Monday, January 15, 2018

lightworker in progress

she hasn't gotten a name yet,  but i have ideas for a lightworker series, so i'm just going with that name as a placeholder for now.

yesterday i worked on her for a while.  i have a vision of her holding her light against the darkness that threatens her joy on a daily basis.  both hubby and son, at different times stated "this is going to be a dark painting".  yes.  it must be.  but, there is hope in her darkness.

onto the photos.

after protecting her eyes, which i hope to keep un touched save for the underpainting which is in these photos, i took a deep breath and dove in.  i gave the whole canvas a wash of color.  burnt sienna, raw umber and quinacridone nickel azo gold, layered and dried between colors.

i sprayed as i went for my drippy look.

not caring where the drips go. 
 she may be crying in the end, or not, who knows

after giving it a wash of quin nickel azo gold

and then a big leap of faith and a huge breath...

yep, it's gonna be dark

still working on the background, and then i'll be working on adding some soul to this beautiful girl.  excited to bring her to life!

until later,

Friday, January 12, 2018

first class complete!

you guys!  i actually completed a class*!  in a timely manner, even!

*and by 'complete' i mean i could fiddle some more, and i could decide to do a more polished background, but the technical work has been finished!  

this was the first weeks class in let's face it, taught by kara bullock herself, and it was dedicated to the master artist piero della francesca.  kara did a painting by piero in her own style, and i took another painting from him and tried to do it more my style with his style and kara's style together.  my style wasn't as prominent, because i'm trying to learn from others, but i certainly let my muse speak.  like, when it came across that i was doing a chinese madonna, instead of more piero's style, i let her come.  i didn't want to change her, because, honestly, i loved where she was going and wanted more of it!  i try to listen to my muse.

this was the painting i was referencing;

this was my underpainting on top of the sketch.  getting placement of shadows where they needed to be.  looked ok here.  kind of close to what i saw.

and then i started mixing paint.  guys, paint mixing is HARD!

between the paint color and how her face morphed, i just couldn't fight the muse.  i went with it.

and, i'm loving her.  

my goals for this piece were;

to get the pose close to what he painted.  (check)
to include hands.  (check)
to finish it.  (pretty close to 'finished' for me, as i like a rough background anyways.  it tells a story)
to get piero's bright blues and reds that he uses.  (check)
to incorporate some gold paint.  (shiny=check)
to be able to make the fabric look like it's fabric.  (i think i did ok)

so, week 1 is done!  

until later,

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

this years tarot draw

a few days back i did my big tarot draw for insight into the coming year.  as always i burned some sage, lit a candle and went inward, into spirit.  i currently have 10 decks that i use for these big draws, and i intuitively chose one deck for each month.  i wrote the meaning for each card in the journal i have just for my tarot use, so i can go back to see if i need to heed any warnings or just to get a heads up which is always nice.

going inward

 unless specifically stated otherwise, 
i took the words for each card directly from the authors book that came with the decks in question.  i did not write the descriptions, they are not my words.

january- i drew from goddess guidance oracle cards by doreen virtue 

kuan yin- compassion
release judgements about yourself and others and focus on the love and light that is within everyone.

february- i drew from power of surrender cards by judith orloff m.d.

surrender frustration
frustration doesn't open any doors.  the key to resolving a block is to take a deep breath, center yourself, and regroup so you may approach the situation more calmly.

march- i drew from wisdom of the oracle cards by colette baron-reid

#39 new life
when spring awakens the world, joy and excitement can be felt all around and in your very core.  blossoms burst from the trees overnight, birds return home and sing their glorious song, and nature is full of promise.  miracles beckon to all of us.  this is one of those times in your life when new ideas inspire you and new opportunities bring you hope for seeing your dreams come true.  all is well in your world, and you have the energy you need to feel renewed.  allow your heart to fill with enthusiasm.  let your light shine, for this is a time of good fortune.

april- i drew from my old morgan greer (i think) tarot deck 

8 of rods/wands
(description from the tarot coloring book, by theresa reed)
not a single human figure appears in the 8 of rods- these wands fly through the air all by themselves.  if you look at the direction, they are pointed toward the earth, a sign that something is about to come to a successful conclusion.  something is moving along with great speed.  this is a great card to see if you are planning on moving or taking a trip.  it is also sometimes associated with important messages.  all systems go!

may- i drew from tree magick by gillian kemp

39 the sweet chestnut tree- growth
three sweet gifts of heaven will fall like sweet chestnuts.  life will be bright and social like the trees glossy, sharp pointed leaves.  the deep spiral furrows in the grey bark symbolizes interaction and growth.  a new romance or social activity may happen through three friends, just as the female flowers sit in threes in a little cup.  like the sweet chestnut, life may flower in june and bear fruit in october.  when the pale green male catkins fertilize the flowers, the cup becomes a spiky shell encasing three nuts until fall when they escape.  each nut encapsulates knowledge, predicting a phase of learning for you.

june- i drew from the wild kuan yin oracle by alana fairchild

34.  blessing of the khata bestowed
in your heart a desire for union grows, an impulse to move deeper into loves embrace.  as you open your heart, i pour forth my healing balm and my blessing.  it is never too late for love.  it is never too late for joy.  it is never too late for connection.  as my blessing vests in your heart, a path will open up for you, leading you into loves expansive landscape.  you too shall be as enchanted in love as i am, cherished and adored, surrendered in love.  love's blessing and presence finds you now.  you are worthy of such blessing and shall be safe in the joy of it's embrace.

(this one i'm confused about, as i am fully engulfed in love.  though it may be self love, self acceptance that i find)

july- i drew from lo scarabs universal tarot that came in this set

14.  temperance
(description from the tarot coloring book, by theresa reed)
temperance is the card of moderation and balance.  the angel in the card transfers water from one cup to another, signifying healing.  this action is also related to blending, as in testing things out to find the right mix.
going with the flow.  finding the sweet spot. patience and calm.  sobriety, emotional stability and spiritual growth.  thats what temperance is all about.

august- i drew from the angel tarot by doreen virtue and radleigh valentine

knight of fire
a significant situation requires your immediate and full attention.  while time is of the essence, it's important to avoid making rash decisions.  enthusiasm and self assuredness are wonderful, so long as they aren't separated from wisdom and caution.
a person who is passionate, a take-charge person who moves quickly with confidence and certainty on behalf of loved ones or loved causes.  fearless, loyal, charismatic, self assured, adventurous, restless.

september- i chose from earth magic oracle cards by steven d. farmer

lotus flower- unfoldment
your spiritual unfoldment is occurring at all times whether or not you are aware of it.  its inevitable as long as you put your trust in the hands of the creator, the one who holds the light.  like the lotus, your soul is always reaching for the light to fulfill it's karmic destiny, but even in that process there are periods of darkness and times to rest.  it is a natural cycle, one that cannot truly be coerced or halted.  it has an innate rhythm of its own, one that is unique to the being that is you.
you do not need to strive or be driven by spiritual ambition.  it does no good to try to force growth upon yourself- or others, for that matter.  allowing is the key here.  allow the place in you that naturally wants to follow the light to do so while recognizing that even when you have complete faith, you will face challenges and occasionally suffering.  your steady faith and love will guide you on your journey of returning to the light.

october- i pulled from crystal ally cards by naisha ahsain

(i have no book on this deck, and no information, even the name.  google was my friend.
i found information and a message from this deck and card here)
when storm whirls through your cards you are being blessed with a time of great change and growth. the growth that storm brings is rarely easy.  ego based beliefs and ideas may be shattered.  old beliefs that were held dear may become empty of meaning.  but this difficult cleansing of obsolete energies is crucial to gaining new levels of deeper understanding and growth.
storm is calling you to stretch out your arms to the sky and invoke the powers of lightning, rain, wind and earth.  in doing so, you will begin your initiation into the deeper mysteries of your life.

i then had to choose two of the same decks for november and december.

november- i pulled from wisdom of the oracle deck again

2. yin
the feminine principle of receptivity.  letting someone else make the first move.  gathering information and taking cues.  the art of conscious allowing.
this is a time of calculated receptivity as you gracefully await what is coming to you, ready to accept it when it appears.  yin doesn't involve frozen dreams or resting, but rather consciously allowing things to flow to you, poised to receive the bounty that will be made available to you.  it implies sensitivity as you alertly study the actions of others and contemplate how they will affect you and yours.  remember you must make space for miracles to appear.  be the 'shaped' not the 'shaper', and you'll see how quickly your dreams manifest.

december- i pulled from earth magic again

winter solstice- reflection 
review the past year and ask yourself what the most important lessons you have had to learn are, what you have accomplished, and what dreams and visions you want to manifest in the coming year.  whether it has been a relatively smooth ride or a challenging series of events, acknowledge your experience as being the work of Source, no matter what your judgments, fears, or joys are.  honor whatever has happened over previous several months with gratitude and forgiveness.  then let it go.  allow yourself some solitude so you can spend some quiet, slow time in reflection.
once you feel complete, reflect on your present life, especially focusing on what you are grateful for.  when you are finished, consider what is to come- all the different possibilities and potential that exist before you.  allow your imagination to roam without limitation or ambition and see what shows up.  notice how you feel in your body with whatever scenario plays out in your mind.  these are previews of that which is gestating, and can manifest and grow when cared for properly.  patience and stillness is called for here, for just as the earth cycles have their own pace, so does this cycle.

so, there it is- my year in full view.  i find it rather interesting, the cycles seem to be in tune with how i usually am feeling, and winter for the month of december, going inward and reflecting.  for july i pulled number 14 which is a symbolic number for winter-orion and his death, and the card is for emotional stability and sobriety as well as healing.  july will bring winters 20th anniversary on the other side, and i'm going to need assistance with it all.  all in all i see lots of growth coming up, personally, spiritually, and in my art.  i post this here in order to come back and reflect each month or in years to come.

until later,

Friday, January 5, 2018

progress is slow

i mentioned last time that i received a gigantic canvas for christmas this year.  the day after christmas i had to bail from a family gathering due to depression and anxiety and felt like the worst person on the planet for doing so.  the next day i started sketching what i hope to be a healing work for me.

she is incredibly sad and vulnerable but her light still has a glow to it.  she does not want the guilt and responsibility of 'living because others need her'.  she needs to find her own joy in living again.  she's tentative and protective of her flame, scared it will be snuffed out. she needs to keep herself and her little light safe but knows your own light, and the light of the world, shines brighter if you share your flame with others.  

on new years day our kids and grands came to play games instead of our annual movie marathon.  i just could not come up with movies i wanted to watch.  it needed to be lighthearted, thats all i knew.  in the end, i just decided on a game day.

here 'we' are playing our new game "labyrinth".  
i ended up just watching the game play that day

 my yearly january ritual of pulling a card for every month proved interesting and gave me some hope.  i need 2 more decks to bring my total to 12, one for each month!

i will read each months card reading on the first of each month for insight

i'm waiting for a shipment of some paint to be delivered to me, cause i don't have enough of the right colors to cover this whole canvas.  trying to be patient, here.  i had an idea about collage-ing the whole background full of this girls 'story' before painting the background, but i put a few pieces down and decided to collage only the orb she carries and just a few odd papers here and there on the background.

as i collaged the papers in the orb, parts of it became sort of a conversation between winter-orion and myself... my grief speaking and winter speaking to my grief.  it was pretty cool and felt good.

this is the soul, the part of you that makes you, you.  
your memories and thoughts, the important parts of life

now i am thinking about how it will all play out, how i want it to be, how i can try to get the effects i would like to see, tossing things out there in my head and hoping it comes out ok in the end.  it's all an experiment.  the work of painting sometimes happens well before paint even enters the studio.

speaking of the studio...  it is wicked cold here in massachusetts and set to be even colder this weekend, wind-chills said to get down to -35 degrees F.  i've been turning on the heater down there in order to piddle around, and one night forgot to turn it off until the next evening.  when i went to turn it off, it hadn't gotten above 44 degrees!  i won't be painting down there anytime soon.  right now i'm set up in our sitting room, and plan on just being as tidy as i can with the drips.  

as soon as my paint is delivered.

until later,

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

goodbye 2017!

it's been a while with me in the trenches of an over the top, major depression, and i'm slowly making my way out.  i could have a few more battles to go before i am ok, but at least i feel safe again.

for my oldest sons birthday in november, we did our annual decorating of his spot;

i forced out a few mini paintings for people this year to go on their tree;

i love how they each have their own personalities

and for my mother in law i painted her chihuahua pup;

we had a nice christmas with all the kids and our 10 year old grand twins from far away.  they were able to go sledding this year and it was a hit!

the very first gift to be opened (and then put out of the way) was an extra huge surprise from one of our adult kiddos!  that canvas is gonna take a lot of paint!  i've been looking thru the reference photos i've been collecting for such an occasion and i think i have a subject.  this will hopefully help the mood a bit.

after the houseful of people left for other parties early christmas afternoon, mark and i opened up stockings we stuffed for each other, in a new tradition i hope to continue as it was nice to have some sweet alone opening time with my main man.  

my three online art classes have ended for the year, and i'm feeling sad and lost without my weekly lessons from some of my favorite artist/teachers.  so this morning i raided my savings account to buy the class i most wanted this year, from kara bullock.  i will be taking lets face it 2018 which will be a year of lessons, focused on different art movements and masters from those periods.  kara has many other classes at different price levels.  (the other classes i want to take are lifebook 2018 with tam laporte and paint your heart and soul 2018 with olga furman.  the pocketbook will only allow one class right now).

i've downloaded and printed out "my magical 2018 yearbook" a free download by jen morris, hoping to get my head around some goals and start to make habits to help me achieve those goals.  i also just ordered a day planner from commit30.  these planners help plan each day with your future goals in mind, asking for a commitment of just 30 days per habit.  

i think (hope) with all the new art supplies i was gifted, the weekly classes to look forward to and to work with, and my goal planning help, i should be off to creating the life i want to live.

and on that note,

wishes for a safe, colorful, and prosperous 2018 to you and yours.

until later,

Thursday, November 2, 2017

dream painting

i have gotten my hands painty!  this is HUGE!  i don't think i've painted since september?  something like that.

this painting will be symbolic of a dream i had the night before.  i woke knowing it was an important message from winter-orion and should be represented as a canvas so to never forget.

the following is taken directly (edited a little for clarity) from my dream journal, where i jot down the important or cryptic dreams i have and then interpret them from a book i have and from internet sites if i feel it needs more information.

"i just now (2:30pm) remembered i had a winter dream last night.  can't remember much, but it was set by his place of death, by the bridge that crosses the river and canal.  young winter (about age 7 or so) crossed the river, walking thru the shallow water, then came back toward me over the bridge and a mama bear was with him.
i wish i remembered any other details from this dream.  i woke up with it fresh in my mind and knew i must write it down, but was too tired.  i also thought that bear means protector of children and family?

from book- bear often represents mother.  can represent our ability to recreate ourselves after a period of rest and reflection.

my thoughts- winter crossed the river easily then came back to me via a bridge with a bear.  the ABILITY for me to see he is ok and can still visit.  it is a good thing for me to recreate myself after this hibernation.

bear is a consummate mother, caring for her young with observable devotion.  bear is a symbol of motherhood and child protection.  (winter is ok, he is safe)
celtic goddess artio is bear goddess who represents the transformation of seasons.  she is said to conjure winter when she needs rest.  upon waking, artio is said to summon summer."

so, i was blown away by the symbology of just one or two elements in this remembered snippet of dream.  the bridge meaning to me transitions to the other side (or back).  and the bear who is a protector, who says it's ok to rest and reinvent yourself, who conjures winter!

i know this was the important part of the dream and i'm not unhappy that i can't recall the rest of it, and i knew that having a reminder of this important communication would help me during the seasonal ebbs i have when just getting off the couch is a struggle.

so, yesterday i painted a background, and today i have sketched my mama bear

i'm hoping that this painting will remind me of bear symbolism and reestablish that my hibernation is just a season.    i need a bit of hope to tide me over till the spring crocus bloom again.

until later,

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

a stress reliever

i've noticed i'm pretty burnt out with painting. i start one and it doesn't go smoothly and i get stressed and lose the muse with my idea so start another one with the same result. it's the stress of expecting each painting to be presentable for the show in february. i can't paint with that expectation on me, so i've decided to let myself off the hook with painting on canvas until after i'm set up for the show! that should cover THAT anxiety. but, i've been waking in the middle of the night with show anxiety and having to go downstairs. just need to concentrate on my tasks and get myself to the finish line.

i have 17 canvasses that are ready to show.  that is, i'm not fiddling with details on them anymore and they are varnished.  of those, i think only one has wire for hanging.  we never got to that over the weekend, so i must wire 16 canvasses sooner rather than later.

i also have to make sure i know each canvas size and calculate their price point.  math and i are like oil and water, so i will do the calculations and bring them to the hubster to verify.  

honestly 17 is a reasonable amount of paintings to show.  they are of differing sizes and prices, and i'm sure they will show well as a group.   i don't need to worry about the amount of paintings, i have enough and there have been shows with less on the walls.  i also need to remember that i will have 20 of my mini canvasses there as well.  my art will be well represented.

i realize it's only october, so i have 3 months before crunch time starts, but my mental health warrants i get these tasks done as soon as possible so i know there are no loose ends to concern my head about.  that the only worries i will have are the ones i make up.  

honey told me the other night after i told him i was stressing, "you know,  only like 30 people will see your paintings. it's a small room in a small library.  more people see them when you post them to Facebook!".  he's right.  i know he's right, but there is something more personal when someone can get real close to your paintings and scrutinize them or touch them (which i hope they don't!).  i feel more vulnerable sending them out into the world like that for a whole month.  but, like myself, they must grow up and see where life takes them.

my birthday went well.  sweetie took the day off to be with me on my special day.  i woke ridiculously early and went outside as the full moon was calling.  the first sight that caught my eye when i went out the door was the constellation orion, which represents my son, winter-orion.  it was a very sweet birthday greeting from him, and i felt it to my bones!

after saying good morning to winter and grandmother moon and resisting the urge to howl (your welcome, neighbors!), i went to my spot on the couch to grab my laptop, finding a card from sweetie on the computer instead.  my smiles were great at 3:30 in the morning!

sweetie took me to get my hair cut, a very short style i am so happy with, and to spend my gift card from michaels.  i got some yummy colors from golden acrylics, some varnish and some fun washi tapes that will look nice hidden in some future paintings!  i went to sallies beauty supply and bought some pink hair color to get me smiling again, and on sunday we saw 'evil dead, the musical', which was raunchy, messy fun.

and, today i pink-ified my hair!

yes, color is my happy place!

until later,