Friday, June 26, 2009

RIP Farrah Fawcett & Michael Jackson...

I just wanted to take a moment to pay tribute to these two people. I detest the way
the media has turned actors and musicians as well as athletes into heroes. BUT...
I do have to say that these 2 people conjure up such great memories and times in my life. Every girl I knew in the 70's wanted Farrah's hair, including myself.
And every guy I knew was in love with her and had a poster of her in their bedrooms!
Such a sad ending to her life...
Thoughts go out to those who really knew her and loved her.


And the even BIGGER story is Michael Jackson....
I fell in love with his music in Jr. High. We all used to sing in the locker room after gym class. AS a tribute I added the song "I'll Be There" to my playlist.
That was the first song I fell in love with.
When he ventured out on his own, I still loved his music and remember the very
early days of MTV and his amazing videos. Of course by then I was in my 20's and my friends and I would gather together around the TV and dance to Michael's music.
It's a shame that his private life had such a negative effect on his music career.
The music world was changed forever by him.
Another life cut short....

Have a wonderful weekend everyone!
Do yourself a favor and listen to some classic Jackson 5 or one of Michael's
fabulous solo albums like 'Thriller'.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

"summertime & the living's easy....."

We went from very cool, rainy weather to the dog day's of summer in a heartbeat here in the windy city! It feels more like the tropics. But as a friend of mine reminded me...enjoy it now because before long the temps will be back in the subzero range!

My summer is flying by at lightening speed with my daughter home from school. We are being a little lazy but I think I've needed it. I have finally spent a couple hours in my studio and realized just how much I've missed being in there in spite of loving every minute with her. Right now her boyfriend has come for a visit and I will get to spend a lot more time in the studio since he is stealing her away from me
for the time being. He came all the way from Memphis on a train to see his sweetheart! Young love is so cute!

First photo is a wonderful piece of artwork from my MAHVELOUS friend Alberta! She is such a talented artist and a special blog friend. She posted this along with a wonderful tribute to girlfriends. Go check out her blog if you aren't familiar with her. She's Fabulous!! Hugs to YOU GIRLFRIEND! And thanks...


Next photo is the first piece of art I've created in a while. PHEW! And it was a piece I did while waiting for another background to dry. I was busy adding layers of
paint to two other large canvases when I picked up this little 5 x 7 canvas and starting adding some paint to cover an old collage that I didn't like. Next thing ya know, I'm adding some muslin fabric and using a graphite sketching pencil and some charcoal and VOILA! I think I love this little piece! As a matter of fact I REALLY LOVE this and when I showed it to my dear hubby, he really liked it. This was one of those no brainer, spur of the moment creations that are spontaneous and serendipitous! I love it when that happens. When you weren't planning anything, weren't expecting anything, had no preconceived notions of what you were doing but
it ALL CAME TOGETHER! We'll see if I can have another of those moments today or tomorrow...


Next piece is another crazy quilt I've been working on off & on for quite a while.
I haven't done much since coming home from vacation and there's not a lot left to do except adding more beads. I think I'm done with the embroidery part.
It's for my studio. Not sure how many of you are flickr friends and how many of you have visited my etsy sites but my flickr site name is pinkbirdgirl and so is one of my etsy sites. The other etsy is flamingo studio which is what is on my business cards. You'd think I would have been a little more consistent when beginning this whole internet networking process. I guess I should've stuck with flamingo studio since that was the name I started with about 6 years or so ago, before I ever posted anything on flickr. Bottom line....I LOVE Flamingos! I have yet to paint one, but I have done a few in fiber arts and in my collages. One of these days, I'll have to paint one.


Next photo is just the closeup of the center. I printed the flamingo onto white fabric then used Shiva oilsticks, watercolor pencils and gel pens to decorate it further.


The rest of the photos are taken in my backyard. I'm trying desperately to learn more about my SLR digital camera. I take the easy way out most of the time and use it in fully automatic mode and never actually play with all that technical stuff. So now, while I'm stepping back a little from my art, I'm trying to be a better photographer. Or at the very least figure out my camera!
I also wanted to show you that even though I haven't posted any art lately, I've been very busy planting MILLIONS of flowers. I have redone 2 whole flower beds that were overgrown with perennials and I've planted LOTS of annuals in beds, in window boxes, in planters. You name it and I've covered it with flowers.
First up, is a close-up of a begonia in one of my window boxes.



Here we have a close-up of a purple wave petunia! Love this color....YUM.


And here we have my friendly neighborhood ducks that love to come and sit in my backyard under the shade of my riverbirch.

Have a wonderfully creative summer!

Friday, June 19, 2009

Friday Freebie...


Another vintage image, this time a woman who is probably much younger than she appears.Why do you suppose their faces always look so stern or unhappy? Was it the corsets or maybe just the fact that they were considered second class citizens?
I can't even begin to imagine what life must have been like for our grandmothers, great-grandmothers and beyond... Of course there were exceptions to the rule. There were women who charted their own paths and didn't listen to the rules of society when it came to living their lives. I admire them quite a lot! But I can't help but feel some sort of admiration to all those who didn't step to the 'beat of their own drummers'. They were also silent heroes--living quietly and accepting their 'place' in society. Women WERE and STILL ARE the center of the home, whatever path they have chosen.
So today's freebie is a tribute to ALL women-past & present. For those who are charting their own course and for those who are quietly playing by someone else's rules. May those of you who don't quite yet have the courage to create the life you've imagined for yourself, go out and FIND the courage!
May you live your life creatively whether it's through cooking, gardening, raising your children or through any one of the arts!
Have a great weekend~

Friday, June 12, 2009

Happy Surprise & Friday Freebie....

A few weeks ago I was the lucky winner of a giveaway on my friend Janine's blog.
She painted this lovely little painting of an angel and I just received it in the mail. Thank you so much Janine! She's adorable and I will find a worthy spot for her in my house. If you don't know Janine, go check out her blog. She does wonderful paintings that make you smile : )


So here's another Friday Freebie. It's another cabinet card and I really like this one! I actually printed it onto a transparency and then transferred it to fabric
and used it in one of my little crazy quilts. I posted it a while back, here's the link to that post. If you do take a look at it, you will notice that I played around with it
in photoshop before printing. I turned it into a solar effect. The little girl ended up with a bright yellow dress & background and then I used some Shiva oil sticks on it to give it a little more color.


It's been a somewhat busy week and I haven't been around to all the blogs I'd like to see but hopefully will have a few moments this weekend.
I'm busy trying to get my house somewhat organized. We've been in the house almost a year and it's still not quite home... I'm getting there. The yard is also a work in progress, but I would much rather be outside digging in dirt than in the house organizing closets and cabinets! So the house is done in spurts.
At this moment my art studio is so packed full of furniture that I can't even walk in there, much less get to either of my desks to do any art. We had the basement carpet cleaned yesterday and my room is NOT carpeted to the excess furniture had to go into my studio while the carpet was cleaned and it's still damp! So I guess my studio will remain a storage room until tomorrow. Maybe just maybe I can at least
get an art tag done, so I won't feel like I've lost my creativity completely!
Have a wonderful weekend!

Friday, June 5, 2009

Freebie Fridays


I'm taking a little step back from my artwork for a while to 'hang out' with my daughter. I still feel the need to stay somewhat connected to my blog and the
friends I've made, SO I'm going to start sharing some of my MANY vintage photos. I have made a few pieces of art with them but not a lot. It's one of those things where I just HATE to use the actual photos and I just haven't gotten around to printing out any of the pictures. I did play around with a few in photoshop but never created much with them. I have actually used 4 original cabinet cards in my artwork in the past and then
felt guilty by using the original. Go figure? I think it has to do with the fact that
they were someone's family. Anyway, I need to get over it and start sharing if I'm not going to jump in and do anything with them.
Please feel free to use them and then share your work with me. And if you do use them
I'd appreciate an acknowledgment in your blog.
Thanks and happy creating!

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Mentally, I'm still in vacation mode....

Wow! I can't believe I've been to sunny FL and back. I've missed so much on everyone's blog. It will take a while to catch up with everyone. Although with my daughter home for the summer I have a feeling that my blogging as well as my artwork is going to slide a bit. So forgive me if I don't post or comment very often.
Spending time with her right now is more important as I've realized kids grow up way too fast and take off on their own so quickly that I'm going to savor time with her this summer. She may not come home at all next summer. She's thinking of staying at college and working. So I'll take a bit of a break from art and blogging. Not totally
withdraw but step back a bit, so I can be available to take off and go with her to the lake or shopping or even go to yoga together.
As I promised on my last post, I am posting photos from my trip to FL.
First photo is from the back deck, looking out over the intercoastal waterway at sunset.
Next photo is Mr. Turtle. He lived in the dunes between the house and the beach. He had a few companions also. He came out with his friends several times a day to chow down on vegetation.
Then he would slip back into his huge hole in the sand. Isn't he cute?


Next photo is a storm brewing over the Atlantic Ocean. It was taken from the front
deck on the house we stayed in. Just love the ominous sky. It looks like someone is pulling
a dark curtain down over the light sky.



And FINALLY... The grandchildren in the new outfits! I stamped dolphins on my grandson's and seahorses on the girl's dresses. The girls really loved their's.
I took a ton of them so I will pick the best ones and frame them for their
'pap' for Father's Day.



Why is it that vacations always feel too short? I think vacations should be a
minimum of 2 weeks.Although with all the stuff you have to do when you get
back home it would be even worse.Acclimating back to reality and laundry and grocery shopping and on and on really makes the vacation slip further and further
from your mind.
Maybe if I goof off with my daughter this summer I can extend some of that
'vacation state of mind'.
I will post a few pieces of art that is in progress just to prove I AM doing something. The question is... will I finish all the pieces in progress?
I do have some projects that are a MUST! So when I get to those I will
definitely show you those.
For now...so long and hope to see you within a week or so. I will probably do
more looking at sites, then posting. Time is precious. Enjoy it!

P.S. I found out when I got home that I was the lucky winner of a giveaway over at my new friend Janine's blog. If you don't know her, please go check out her blog.
And wish her a speedy recovery as well,because she just had surgery on her foot.
But because of her inability to be up and about, she is creating some wonderful paintings! There is always a bright side to any little mishap in our lives!