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It was a good year.  It was the year I felt brave enough to try painting faces and it was tutorials from 'Kat Can Paint' that explained the idea in simple language that made it possible for me to paint flesh tones.
It was the year I learned that Picasso copied an old master's painting over and over again as a learning exercise and it was the year I realised I could do this too.  It was the year of Andrea De Meng and Tracy Verdugo workshops and painting with Isabelle Bryer.  It was the year I finally felt I had made progress in my painting.  It was a good year.


One of the most reasonably priced ecourses on the internet.  Before the first video had finished I was running out to Michaels for paper clay.  Nicely filmed and well explained.  Jennifer Rizzo will have you forgetting about perfectionism and getting your hands dirty.  Even if you have never used paper clay before Jennifer will help you get beautiful results.

Visit Jeanne Oliver's ning forum for more information.


‘The [African] masks were not simply sculptures like any other. Not at all. They were magic objects…They were weapons. To help people stop being ruled by spirits, to free themselves. Tools. If we give a form to these spirits, we become free…I understood why I became a painter…Les Demoiselles d’Avignon must have come to me that very day [when I visited the museum and saw the African masks], but not at all because of the forms; because it was my first exorcism painting’


I found this on the Inward Facing Girl blog and just had to share...


I just love everything about this - Jennifer Mercede in action!


It was so nice to be painting with Tracy again.  This time we are all at Jenny Doh's Studio Cresendoh in the Artists Village of Santa Ana.

It was great to reconnect with old friends and meet new friends.

I don't find Tracy's process easy but I do think I learn and grow every time I take her class.

Here's our group photo - look at all those lovely gems!

Photo courtesy of Jenny Doh
I'm already looking forward to 2015!

Painting with Isabelle Bryer

Today I was lucky enough to paint with Isabelle Bryer.  I posted some of her beautiful artwork a few weeks back.  After I contacted her she kindly agreed to show my her dry brush technique.  She was very kind and generous with her knowledge and I found it inspirational to spend time in her studio surrounded by her beautiful artwork even if it was just for a few hours.

The painting below reminds me so much of Isabelle herself...


I was super excited about going to Andrea's workshop and she didn't disappoint, Andrea is very generous with her knowledge.  It was a lot to fit into one day but it was nice to go home with the feeling of achievement.


I do love finding new (to me) artists and it's extra nice when they are local.  I stumbled upon Isabelle Bryer's work on Etsy.
This piece in particular calls to me...

Snow Angel by Isabelle Bryer

Find Isabelle HERE.


I learn something every time I do one of these studies.  This painting taught me I really do have the patience to paint all those little individual daisy petals.

Klimt Study
Mother & Child
Acrylic on Canvas (12"x12")


I'm good at starting projects... very, very bad at finishing.  All pieces WIP.


Sunday's painting.  She's still a WIP.  Need to rework those lips for starters...

It's funny how little errors become so noticeable after posting a picture.
I tried to paint during my teens and twenties.  If I had ended up with the image above I think I would have thrown a tantrum and given up painting forever... or at least until the next day.

Today and I can see all those little errors as an opportunity to improve - those wonky lips, those too small eyes...

Here she is after working on her a little more on Monday evening...
I'm still not sure if she is finished.  I'm sure I could do better on the nose and lips, but I'm learning to love my work - imperfections and all.


Work in progress...


This week I feel I made a breakthrough.
Check out the fantastic mini classes and workshops offered by Kat McBride over at Kat Can Paint!


This is quite amazing - watch what happens when a NASA scientist taps into his creative brain...


Dadirri - A Reflection By Miriam - Rose Ungunmerr-Baumann

NGANGIKURUNGKURR means 'Deep Water Sounds'. Ngangikurungkurr is the name of my tribe. 

The word can be broken up into three parts: Ngangi means word or sound, Kuri means water, and kurr means deep. So the name of my people means 'the Deep Water Sounds' or 'Sounds of the Deep'. 

This talk is about tapping into that deep spring that is within us.

Many Australians understand that Aboriginal people have a special respect for Nature. The identity we have with the land is sacred and unique. Many people are beginning to understand this more.
Also there are many Australians who appreciate that Aboriginal people have a very strong sense of community. All persons matter. All of us belong. And there are many more Australians now, who understand that we are a people who celebrate together.

What I want to talk about is another special quality of my people. I believe it is the most important. It is our most unique gift. It is perhaps the greatest gift we can give to our fellow Australians. In our language this quality is called dadirri. It is inner, deep listening and quiet, still awareness. 

Dadirri recognises the deep spring that is inside us. We call on it and it calls to us. This is the gift that Australia is thirsting for. It is something like what you call 'contemplation'.

When I experience dadirri, I am made whole again. I can sit on the riverbank or walk through the trees; even if someone close to me has passed away, I can find my peace in this silent awareness. There is no need of words. A big part of dadirri is listening.
Through the years, we have listened to our stories. They are told and sung, over and over, as the seasons go by. Today we still gather around the campfires and together we hear the sacred stories. As we grow older, we ourselves become the storytellers. We pass on to the young ones all they must know. The stories and songs sink quietly into our minds and we hold them deep inside. 

In the ceremonies we celebrate the awareness of our lives as sacred.

The contemplative way of dadirri spreads over our whole life. It renews us and brings us peace. It makes us feel whole again.
In our Aboriginal way, we learnt to listen from our earliest days. We could not live good and useful lives unless we listened. This was the normal way for us to learn - not by asking questions. We learnt by watching and listening, waiting and then acting. Our people have passed on this way of listening for over 40,000 years.

There is no need to reflect too much and to do a lot of thinking. It is just being aware.

My people are not threatened by silence. They are completely at home in it. They have lived for thousands of years with Nature's quietness. 

My people today, recognise and experience in this quietness, the great Life-Giving Spirit, the Father of us all. It is easy for me to experience God's presence. When I am out hunting, when I am in the bush, among the trees, on a hill or by a billabong; these are the times when I can simply be in God's presence. 

My people have been so aware of Nature. It is natural that we will feel close to the Creator.

And now I would like to talk about the other part of dadirri which is the quiet stillness and the waiting.

Our Aboriginal culture has taught us to be still and to wait. We do not try to hurry things up. We let them follow their natural course - like the seasons. We watch the moon in each of its phases. We wait for the rain to fill our rivers and water the thirsty earth.

When twilight comes, we prepare for the night. At dawn we rise with the sun.


I'm signed up and ready to go.  July cannot get here fast enough.  A minimum of six participants are needed for the class to go ahead - anyone local to Pasadena, Los Angels?  Michael DeMeng is teaching too!!! 

Find out more details and sign-up HERE.


From July 2011.
Credits: Fiddlette Desgins


This is a page I created a couple of years ago for the Deviant Muse at Deviantscrap.com.  It's the first page of an article for my lovely designer friend Christine Honsinger who is Fiddlette Designs.
I LOVE this page.  I consider it part of my best digital artwork and have posted it here as a reminder of what I would like to get back to.
Christine is between virtual homes right now - I hope she finds a new store very soon!


A rare Sunday afternoon alone means I get to watch Frida the movie with Salma Hayek.
I loved the animated sequences that connected life events to her artwork. I wish there had been more of these, but that's not a critisism it's just me wanting more.  Frida is a beautiful movie and well worth watching.


I thought I had finished this painting that I had originally started in Flora's class at Cresendoh with Jenny Doh back in er... erm... I think it was 2011...

...until I saw Whitney's Buddha.

Then I knew I had to be bold, unfold and Bloom True, find my Paint Mojo, channel the Goddess Within, trust the Angles in My Studio and get with the Buddha Program.

When I signed up for the Buddha Painting Program I didn't realise you got one lesson every three days.  I'm impatient.  I watched the first video and then was off. 

Here's my buddha painting.

Thank you to Whitney Ferre for a huge does of inspiration and to all my art lessons/teachers/mentors from the last two years...

Digi Scrapping Again

I LOVE this paper - I want to wrap everything in it.

Everything from The Lilypad
Paper by Little Butterfly Wings
Buttons from Love You Good Bundle by Rachel Young
Paper Hearts Winter with You by CD Muckowsky
Alpha Luv Song by CD Muckowsky


It's been a long time...

Credits: Love You Good by Rachel Young
Messy Love Papers by Michelle Goldin
Winter with You by CD Muckowsky
All available at The Lilypad

Thank you for looking!


Thank you 2012!
Wishing you all wonderful things for 2013!