Sunday, March 23, 2014

Illustration Friday - 'red'

Hey all, happy weekend -quick post for IF's word prompt this week, 'red'. My inspiration was Jimmy Choo's 'anouk" red patents. I got one of his sig. perfume gift boxes for Christmas, LOVE...

This was created in another of my handmade journals (finally finished it after a very long time) The japanese cherry blossom paper strip you see is the inside cover of the journal back, it happily peeked out and fit the theme :>

Have a creative week!

Thursday, March 13, 2014

The Great Big Stitched Postcard Swap

Hello friends! Just wanted to share a little project with you from the Do What You Love website. The deadline to post online to the group is tonight so I'll be making this a short post and finish it tomorrow.

Anyhow this was my first time jumping in on this: a global swap of stitched postcards with each one having a prompt word - for this 7th swap the word was 'create'. And actually I'm not even sure how I first stumbled upon the DWYL website but when I seen the sign up for this swap well......I do love serendipity :>

Here's the front of my postcard that I created for my swap partner, Beth Parker. I love her bright & fun, colorful illustrations and can't wait to see what she created for me (!)

I'll post the back of the postcard and some closeup details tomorrow.....

Cheers! xo

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Illustration Friday - 'twisted'

Hello friends, a quick post for the IF word this week 'twisted'. Haven't joined in over there in ages so popped in seen the word, then got to work.

I had lots of ideas float around in my head on what to illustrate: gnarly tree trunks, braided hair, a forest path, leafy vines etc. In the end I went with a favorite snack - warm, soft pretzels (with plenty of mustard, thank you)

Pretzels have quite a history actually, dating back to the Early Middle Ages. There are numerous accounts on the origin of pretzels, as well as the origin of the name; most agree that they have Christian backgrounds and were invented by German monks. Read more about pretzels here....

Anyhow, I'm totally going to make these sometime soon after getting a craving for them doing this illo :> Here's the recipe I'll be using, it looks a bit complicated but it's quite simple to prepare:

Philadelphia-Style Soft Pretzels

4 cups (600 g) all purpose flour, plus extra for work surface

1 package active dry yeast
1.5 teaspoons salt
kosher salt for sprinkling
1 tablespoon honey
3/4 cup (180 ml) milk
3/4 cup (180 ml)water
oil for greasing bowl
2 teaspoons baking soda dissolved in 1 cup water
1 cup  (115 g) melted butter

In a food processor pulse together the flour, yeast and salt to mix, then add the honey and milk. 
Slowly add the water until a soft ball forms, pulsing for about one minute. Continue to mix the dough for 3 more minutes, then turn onto a floured surface and knead by hand until dough is smooth and elastic (about 2 more minutes).

Form into a ball and set in a lightly greased bowl. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled in size ( hour). Keep dough bowl covered while you work, break off a walnut sized piece, and roll into a long rope 16-18 inches long. Use illustration as a guide to form a pretzel shape and set on baking 
parchment lined cookie sheet or a lightly greased cookie sheet. Repeat with remaining dough.

When all the pretzels are shaped, cover with a towel and let rise until doubled, about 40 minutes. 
Preheat oven to 375°F (190°C), and brush each pretzel lightly on top with baking soda mixture.

Bake until golden, about 12-15 minutes.As soon as the pretzels come out of the oven brush them with melted butter, and sprinkle with kosher salt. Best when served warm and dipped in your favorite mustard.


Enjoy some pretzels and have a great week!

Monday, January 6, 2014

Happy 2014!

Hello friends and Happy New Year - I hope you have been well and are looking forward to this brand new year filled with new dreams, hope and possibilities. Last year was a quirky one for me with short bursts of creativity but mostly it was filled with expanses of  no inspiration and more thinking than doing. I've always been a glass half-full person though and so managed to hang in there and wait it out.

So now.....on to inspiration! I love, LOVE the color Pantone selected as their color of the year, anyone with me on this? Such an upbeat color, it's impossible not to feel good looking at it. (btw the knitted coin purse with the felted pull is from Paper Source)

Wishing you all the best that 2014 has to offer, abundance in all areas of your life and a gentle reminder to not let setbacks derail you on your journey - sometimes they are blessings in disguise.

Monday, August 26, 2013

Dear Blog - it's been awhile

i'm  still  here . . .

hello again. thank you for coming back to visit dear reader.
i was away much longer than i anticipated. i've missed this blog and all of you.
i hope you are well.

"It will never rain roses: when we want to have more roses,

we have to plant more trees."
-- George Eliot

sunflowers', acrylic on canvas, 16x16

“We should all have personal hot air balloons and drift serenely through the clouds.”

-- Rhys Bowen, In a Gilded Cage

On the subject of 'drift', I came across an article recently by Gretchen Rubin, author & founder of The Happiness Project - it really struck a chord with me. For many months I've felt a drift attitude about my art & life. She had a short checklist in the article and to my surprise I found myself checking off at least 2 of the statements.

I think from time to time we all need to dust off our inner compass and find our way again by asking ourselves questions like:

"What do I want?"
"What do I really like to do?"
"What grabs my attention, gives me a sense of purpose, fills my passion-well?"

I hope to stay on course with the projects I've started recently, to show up here more often & to get around to visit you soon.

Until next time....

Monday, February 18, 2013

Illustration Friday 'wool' and Paint Party Friday

A quick post for IF's word this week, 'wool'. Also glad to be contributing to the lively group over at PPF.

I had a few ideas for my interpretation of 'wool' but in the end went with my take on this Missoni Soia wool-blend sweater with its' lovely colors. I would love to own something like this, but to be honest I don't think I would ever pay that much for a sweater :)

Check out what other takes on 'wool' are here, and don't forget to pop in to the Paint Party over here.

Have a great week!

Friday, February 8, 2013

Illustration Friday - 'storm' and Paint Party Friday

"I am not afraid of storms for I am learning how to sail my ship."

Louisa May Alcott (November 29, 1832 – March 6, 1888, American novelist, best known for the novel Little Women, 1868)

My offering for IF's word this week 'storm', and actually glad to be submitting this on a Friday for a change - it's been awhile  :) Also for the gang over at PPF where I haven't participated in months (!)

I love the meaning behind this quote, we all have 'stormy seas' at some time or another in our lives just when the water looks calm and trouble-free. If you've been riding out any kind of 'storm' in your life recently, I wish you smooth sailing and a quick, safe journey back to shore....

Have a great weekend

Thursday, January 31, 2013

Illustration Friday - 'wings'

handmade journal, 5x8, mixed media on arches hp watercolor

So happy to be contributing over at IF this week for the word "wings". I haven't posted yet for this new year so I hope it finds you well with lots of goals set in place and let's not forget about our dreams.....

As well thought out and planned as we think things are though, according to statistics, by now most of our New Year's resolutions have fallen by the wayside - that's probably why I don't make any :)

Instead, I usually get my mojo going by focusing on something that's really been an inspiration, like the word "intent",  Panetone's 2013 color of the year 'emerald' (which just happens to be my May birthstone color) or this week's IF challenge word "wings".

Stay true to your self and be well.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Illustration Friday - 'snow'

Inspiration found me today, so better late than never for IF's challenge word this week 'snow'.  I've always loved matryoshka dolls, aka Russian nesting dolls. I have a few sets in my collectibles - one set was custom made for me and made in the Ukraine.

Make sure to visit IF and see what everyone over there is up to - Happy Holidays!

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Illustration Friday - 'stretch'

A quick post for the challenge word this week - 'stretch'. Don't forget to stop by and check out all the talent over at Illustration Friday.

Hope your holiday season is off to a festive start, and that it finds you & yours well - have a great weekend!

Monday, October 22, 2012

Illustration Friday - 'sky'

"Clouds come floating into my life no longer to carry rain or usher storm,
but to add color to my sunset sky." ~ Rabindranath Tagore

handmade journal, mixed media on hot press Arches

* * * * * *
A quick one for IF's word this week, pulled out some paints and splashed some color around. I've been feeling a bit 'out of the loop' as they say, but trying to find inspiration to create & draw/ paint again. Sunsets here have been amazing lately - so glad to see the the trees are trying to keep up as best they can - hopefully a show of riotous color in a few weeks :>!

Don't forget to check out the rest of the talent over at IF, have a fabulous week!

Monday, October 15, 2012

Early Fall + Nature's Color Palette

"The moment one gives close attention to any thing, even a blade of grass it becomes a mysterious, awesome, indescribably magnificent world in itself."  ~ Henry Miller

Hello friends, a quick post to share something that inspired me this morning. The colors + textures in this beauty just popped out at me begging me to look up and then move in for a closer also inspired an illustration which I may end up using for this project if I can meet the deadline.

What's inspiring YOU today?