Friday, February 8, 2019

Word of the Year - Intentional

I've noticed several people choosing a word for the year recently.  I always thought it was a nice idea but could never settle on just one word.  Five or Six maybe.  A list for the Pick the Word of the Month Club maybe.  But one word for all 12 months?  Oh my.  The mere thought of it made this right brained girl dizzy.

But as 2018 came to a close and I looked back I found that I had actually lived a word for those 12 months.  Follow Through.   ...oh!  I guess that's two words, isn't it.  Well if you say it fast enough it sounds like one word.  Try it with me.   Followthrough.   See?  It works.

Anyway, the realization that I had lived a word (or two) for a year made me rethink the idea of choosing a word for 2019.  And so, here at the beginning of a new year ...   oh       You're thinking its February, Elizabeth.  You're thinking its not the beginning of a new year any more.  You're thinking I've missed the boat for new year thoughts and new year directions ...  and new year words.  

Well, maybe not.  I mean, isn't the point to start looking forward to the days ahead with a new perspective?  Isn't the point to move forward from where we stand with a changed direction?   Isn't that true whether the date is January 1 or February 8?       Yes, I think so too. 

And so my word for 2019, my very first word of this year, is Intentional.  The more I think about it the more I realize it encompasses everything.   I can know what is best to eat for good health.  And I can eat it, most of the time, when I feel like it.  I can know all kinds of physical exercise that would be beneficial for my health.  I can want to do said exercise.  I can choose to do said exercise.  But I have discovered those mental exercises are not enough.  You have to actually get up and DO them.  Ugh!  And I can want to be more creative.  I can choose to spend more time creating.  But actually putting pencil to paper requires more than that.  It requires the intentional choice AND follow through AND doing it again tomorrow.  And then the tomorrow after that. 

Oh my.  This is going to be a year of stretching and growing. 

So I will be back here in this bloggy space INTENTIONALLY in a few days.  I hope to see you here too.  I've been working on a large project for the last year and I will be sharing more about it in the coming posts. 

Do you choose a word of the year?  What is your word this year?  And how has choosing a word worked out for you before?  I'd love to hear.  I always hear about them in January but not so much in December.

Wind and Honey Creations
Creative Pencils - Online Drawing Lessons

Monday, April 2, 2018

Just Some Fun Art

Currently I am working on a rather large project that will be revealed soon. When I need to take my thoughts in another direction for a moment, I am focusing on creating art that is simply fun. Sometimes a girl just needs to go to places that have no real deep meaning, no enlightened artistic techniques, and no life altering purpose.

So I thought I'd share some of my fun.

I love bunnies and when I really want to relax I return to my first love drawing simply in graphite.  

And then there is the fun look of a simple black and white drawing on a colored background.  This cat was done in charcoal with a touch of India Ink on a Moleskine Journal Cover. 

I'm thinking about putting this one in my Fine Art America Shop.

This little girl and her kitten were done with a new approach I am playing with.  I draw it in graphite, color it with Derwent Inktense, and then shade it with Graphite.  Its a quick process and fun.  I am enjoying the whimsical subjects I've been choosing for this process. 

And in case you are unaware since Winter seems to be making a comeback this week, Spring is just around the corner.  You can see in this pot that the kitties are already sprouting this year.

Today I am diffusing Spring Mist.  Here is the recipe.
     4 drops Lemon Essential Oil
     4 drops Orange Essential Oil
     1 drop Lime Essential Oil
     1 drop Cinnamon Essential Oil

Wind and Honey Creations
Creative Pencils - Online Drawing Lessons

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

New Things and Old Things and Happy Returns
Flower Child   My newest mixed media painting

I used to read about bloggers that were away from their blogs for a while and some of them were away for a long time. And I thought I would never do that. I didn't mean to. But as the circumstances of life grew and piled one on top of the other, it just happened.  At first I was caught up in the "stuff" of life and then eventually it had become such a habit not to write that I'd run out of words to say.


But in the spirit of grace, life continues to unfold and as the leaves of Autumn begin to change color, I am turning a few of those leaves over and returning to my beloved blog as I apologize for my absence with air kisses and promises to stay put this time.  No more long pauses between posts.
And she comes on the cutest bags!
One of the things that was supposed to come with this return was a new blog.  My former Wind and Honey website was created on iweb.  You may be aware that Apple stopped supporting websites created on iweb several years ago.  But they also said the sites would continue to work as long as they were left up.  And they were right.  It did.  For several years.  But finally last winter my old, friendly, easy, drag and drop website could no longer keep up with the rapidly changing technology and it crashed.  It has taken me a year to pull together all the pieces necessary and to gather my courage for creating a new website that would not be so easily designed nor maintained.

In the process of this very grown up experience that I was neither prepared for nor desired, I was advised that it was time to move from this fun and beautiful blog design and begin to post my new writings on my new site.  With a sigh and a pout I agreed but planned to leave this blog up because I love everything about it.  And so, tonight I was to the point in the new website design that it was time to create the blog.  I planned to point the two blogs to each other but to post everything new on the new site.

And then the moment came to write on that new blog.  Its all very tidy....... and white...... and plain...... and, well...... not me.  I just couldn't do it.  So, here I am, back again.  Instead I've chosen to create a link on that page that points people here.   --- where it feels like home.   I hope you agree.
phone case by Wind and Honey Creations
 When I haven't been in the throes of web creation, I've been playing with mixed media painting.  I usually begin with my pencils but as the piece progresses I pull out whatever is necessary to get the look I am after.  Each piece may involve colored pencils, graphite, pastels, ink, watercolor, acrylic, pasted papers, or even some digital painting for finishing touches.  I am having so much fun with this creative venture.  It is so free with absolutely no rules.  (And if you've been with me for a while here, you know I'm really not fond of rules.)  I just add whatever I want in whatever medium makes sense at that moment.  There have been a few glitches along the way as I found a few mediums that don't play well with others.  But that is part of the adventure of it all.

So pop on over to the new Wind and Honey Creations site for a look/see.  And while you're at it, have a sachet through my new shop Wind and Honey at Fine Art America.

And I'll be back here to share again sooner this time... promise. 
Love my Oils!

Today I am diffusing a little Autumn Magic.  Here is the recipe.
     4 drops Cinnamon Bark Essential Oil
     4 drops Orange Essential Oil
     1 drop Nutmeg Essential Oil
     1 drop Clove Essential Oil

Wind and Honey Creations
Creative Pencils - Online Drawing Lessons

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Siamese Cat in Luscious Colors
Have you tried the Derwent Tinted Charcoal? The colors are so lovely. The lend themselves nicely to drawings of subjects in a more natural setting. And they are perfect for Siamese cats! Charcoal has a reputation for being bold, even visually "loud". If you love the colors but are a bit intimidated by the fact that they are charcoal, this is the workshop for you. I use techniques with charcoal that bring softer results than is typically imagined with charcoal. And these tinted colors are wonderful to work with. 

Students at any drawing level can enjoy success in this workshop.  I give detailed step by step instructions. You can even email me with your questions or scans of your drawing as you work so that I can help you. This is a video workshop so you can watch it as many times as you wish at whatever hour your creative juices are most active. Join me! We'll have fun. 

Wind and Honey Creations
Creative Pencils - Online Drawing Lessons

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Artful Prayer in Mini Session

My thoughts have been going in the direction of art journaling a lot lately. For one thing I'm working on a really big project that involves my art journal. But more on that later.   But also I have been preparing to teach at a retreat this weekend and also another one next weekend. I will be teaching a mini session of my Artful Prayer Workshop at each of them.   For the Artful Prayer Workshop we use only artist pencils of various kinds and markers.  I love what I call "paint and paste" work.  But I find that when I work on something with that approach, I get so caught up in the technique of it that I fail at the journaling part.  But when working with the slow medium of artist pencils, my mind has the freedom and space to move forward with my prayer time.

You know I am a self professed paper snob. I have trouble finding a journal made just right with just the right paper to work with my various pencil supplies.  So I've made journals for the weekend participants.  Each one is different so they can choose and be unique.  When I teach classes I'm all about making choices and about being your unique self.

Here is a smidgen sneak peek at a small part of the example for the weekend class.  But one of the things I insist on whether my students are 5 or 75 is that no one can just copy mine.  I teach concepts and techniques not projects.  They must find a way to make it their own.
 My penmanship is less that ideal.  And sometimes I have students who are naturals when it comes to lovely lettering.  I am not.  And I find that for me to spend too much time focusing on the penmanship can ruin the prayerful mood of the moment.  So, I just don't worry about it.

I've also been playing lately with Jennifer Frith's approach to journaling with a weekly calendar.  Its kind of fun and I am thinking about ways to incorporate it into my regular format.  Here are some of my first attempts.  These were created in a hardbound Moleskine using graphite, Derwent Inktense, and Faber Castell Pitt markers.

Wind and Honey Creations
Creative Pencils - Online Drawing Lessons

Friday, July 17, 2015

Let There Be Light - WBC Take 2

If you read my previous post, my original entry for the Where Bloggers Create Party, you'll know I had some electrical difficulties producing a dark studio. Since there was some interest in how I found ways to fit a 20' x 20' studio into a 9' x 9' room, I am sharing more, now that the lights are back on.   I have tried not to repeat what I already showed you in the WBC post.  So, if you didn't see those, you can do that here.
The biggest secret is to go UP with everything!

In moving from a spacious space where light and room were generous, to an itty space where everything seemed a frustration and challenge at first, I learned to look from a different perspective at what supplies should be out where they were visible.  In my large studio, I loved having everything out and visually available at all times.  That was no longer an option.  Well, actually at one point I did have my stainless steel shelves on one wall and the printer/scanner shelves (which is just like the cat's bunk beds) were out.  But I found that in this tiny space, all that utility felt very uninspiring.  So the closet houses the printer/scanner shelves and the large stainless shelves filled with mixed media supplies.  I also have some less than lovely plastic drawers in the closet holding decorative papers and odds and ends.
My antique dental drawers filled with pencils.
I had to think through what I really use on a regular basis.  Could this still be convenient in the closet or does it need to be in the room?  Maybe less than convenient in the closet (the printer and scanner) but maybe worth it to not look at it every day.  Does it really need to be on top of the work table or could it just be in a handy place close by?  I play with mixed media art but artist's pencils are my premium medium when I work professionally.  So having the pencils out and available is most important.

I use altoid tins to hold my most used colors of Derwent Artbar and Derwent Intense blocks.  They take up less table space and are great cases for travel when I want them.   This is a vintage laundry table.  The top is porcelain so paint just washes right off.  The drawer holds markers.

This little folding tray is so handy.  It extends my work table.  It is easily moved to the desk should I need it for drawing supplies or beside the sewing machine.  Or I can just fold it up and put it away if I need the room.  I have one more I use sometimes but I think its in another room right now.
Kenya and Rose in the bunk beds

This vintage ironing board folds up and takes up little space.  But I can easily set it up when I need an extended table top to spread out supplies or finished pieces.
My daughter's ballet shoes

The folding drawing board substitutes for my drafting table.  It works fairly well as I rarely work larger than 11" x 14" anyway.  I loved my drafting table and I did have it in here for a while.  But there was hardly any room to walk.  I realized the real need was for a drawing space that could be elevated at an angle and a safe place to leave the paper while a project is not yet finished.  The table top board solves that need without taking up 3' x 3' of the room and it can be moved should I need the desk for other purposes.
Cigar box for drawing supplies

I love vintage objects.  Previously I had the luxury of being able to place them in my studio just for the purpose of inspiration.  Many boxes and jars were empty.  I just loved looking at them.  But in my new small space everything has to have a purpose.  So if there was something I really wanted in the room I found a job for it.
Matchstick holder for drawing brushes
Lydia, Studio Supervisor in charge of holding the floor down

I love rocking chairs.  I found that I neeeeded a rocking chair in my studio for it to feel right to me.  But, of course, there is no room for it.  I do kind of have a thing for rocking chairs.  I have 7.  This one is the most light weight one making it easier to move about if necessary.  My sweet husband, the Poet, bought me a keyboard that I can hold on my lap in my rocking chair and a large monitor.  So, this can be my desk chair.     ---I know, I know........
Kenya, my muse
As I said before, the sewing machine tucks away neatly on the typewriter shelf.  And there is room underneath inside for my light box. 

The bookshelves are hardly seen but are still available.  They are behind the door and beside the desk.  They hold up the chair my daughter Kate made that holds the tv.
Some finished pieces available to purchase.

I want to recover this chair but don't have the sewing skills to do it properly.  I welcome suggestions or ideas!!!

And then when all the necessary things were in place I found a few places, mostly on the walls, to add a bit of decorative fluff just to make me smile.
Bo.  The Old Man.  
 Thank you for indulging me this 2nd run through.  I am still learning how to make this space work more efficiently and yet maintain an air of creative whimsey.  It is a growing experience.

Wind and Honey Creations
Creative Pencils - Online Drawing Lessons

Monday, July 13, 2015

Where Bloggers Create 2015

 I thought I was going to miss the Where Bloggers Create Party for this year. My studio was a mess and I didn't think I would have time to clean it up. But I ended up with some surprise time. So, I'm just a bit late but I'm scooting in here in the last minutes. Yea!  Thank you Karen Valentine for letting me sneak in.  **After writing the previous words last night the breaker broke for my studio.  I only had one light on so don't know what the deal is.  But the problem seems to be more complicated than just flipping the switch in the garage.  So I was waiting until morning to take my pictures but have found they are still fairly dark.  I've used the ones that are less dark and tweaked them in Photoshop trying to get a bit more light.  I do apologize for their lacking in quality.)

If you've followed this event for a while now you might remember that I used to have a large sunny room for a studio. (see that studio here) Then we moved and I had a room that was much smaller. (see that studio here) Well, we are still in that same house but I found I couldn't work in that room. I needed sunshine. So, I've moved to an even smaller room with only one window.  What in the world?!!   But, at least the sun shines in!

It has been quite an adjustment and I have had to rethink pretty much everything.  For one thing there is very little room for fluff.  You have to start thinking about just what is necessary.    But I do love that sunshine.   The view isn't amazing but I need to be working and not staring out the window anyway.   In this room, where space is of a premium, the cats have bunk beds.

I do find that at least once a week I wonder if I couldn't find a way to fit my larger work table into this room. I get my trusty tape measure out and check to see if the walls have gotten any longer since the last time I measured. And, once again I see that there is no way to fit that large table in here. Actually, the truth is that I usually have a messy table with only a small workspace -- whether the table is large or small. A lot of the larger table was filled with the cat's baskets.  And if you can see Rose the black cat in this dark photo you will see that she still prefers the table to her bed.

My antique dentist drawers had to go on the lower level.  (You can see more about them in better light here)  When your space is small everywhere is potential for storage.   I can still use them here.

I kept one of the 2 teacher's desks from the previous room.  I love how the typing table in this desk works to keep my sewing machine. And then when I'm finished, it just tucks right back where it came from.   If I did not use this large desk, I could fit my large work table in.  But I'd lose that way cool sewing cabinet.  So, we make choices..... and then we live with them.   (This picture is from the last time I shared.  The light wouldn't let me get a good pic today of the sewing machine out.)

My daughter made this chair that the tv sets on in college. It was a sculpture class and they were supposed to make a chair that represents themselves.  So, I guess this is a portrait of my daughter that sits beneath a painted portrait of her on the wall.  I never realized how redundant that is until I typed it here. 

And then about every other week, I think I might want to bring my drafting table back. But I use a tabletop drawing board that works quite well and the drafting table is only sentimental. So, I guess its really about learning to be content and making things work, making them enough. I have several creative decorating plans for this room. That will give us something to talk about next year.   And hopefully we will have light next year!!

Thank you for joining me in my little studio today.   I've loved having you here in spite of the complications.   By the way, the lovely design for my blog background was created by Karen Valentine using my art.  Its been a few years and I keep thinking I should have her redo it.  But I really like this one so I just keep it.  She does professional personalized work.  If your blog needs a little boost, I recommend Karen for blog design.   

Wind and Honey Creations
Creative Pencils - Online Drawing Lessons
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