Wednesday, March 31, 2010

"Sacred Waters..."

...from my Silk Sari ATC collection
makes an highly dramatic
while using Microsoft Editor.
I just had to share!
I really, really love artsy surprises like these.

The moments of happiness we enjoy
take us by surprise.
It is not that we seize them,
that they seize us.”
Ashley Montagu

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

"A Spring Desert Palette..."

...from bougainvillea to brittlebush...
so bountifully blooming and wildly beauteous!
Click on any image to enlarge...:)

Monday, March 29, 2010

"Be Aware of the GIANTS...!"

...the Argentine Giants,
(a.k.a. Echinopsis candicans) that is!
Height to about 3 feet. Spreading to about 7 feet.
White with yellow centers, very fragrant,
up to 8 inches in diameter.
Blooming Time:
March - April.
Green stems are stems 3 or 4 inches thick.
Purple, with a red pulp.
0 - 2,800 Feet.
Sandy flats. Full sun. A xeriscape landscape plant.
Native to Argentina.

(PSST...Reports have it that they are being spotted
My neighborhood is full of them.
Be on the alert...You just might see some, too!)
Have a Happy Cactus Monday...
keep your eyes peeled for giant surprises!

“Surrounding yourself with dwarfs
does not make you
a giant.”
~Yiddish Proverb

Sunday, March 28, 2010

"How Could I Resist..."

"Lemon-Lime Sour Cream Meringue Pie
with Fresh Raspberries & Sliced Kiwi,
Baked in an Almond Pie Crust"
as quoted directly
from the desert menu at the Tonto Bar & Grill
in Cave Creek Arizona...
where Scott and I
met mom and dad for lunch yesterday.
Check out their website...
for a real taste of "Arizona flavor".
See awesome photos of the property
and feast your eyes on delights beyond imagination.
It was a glorious spring day...lovely family time...
an amazing top it all off.
So now, I ask you again... could I resist??? :)
Life is good!

Saturday, March 27, 2010

"Floral Splatter..." my little red Hand.Book sketchbook.
(And, no, I STILL haven't completed the book...)
I had a beautiful bunch of roses
gifted me by my sweetie for the first day of Spring
and have just now gotten around to painting
one of them.
The other two "flowers" were painted several weeks ago
with out any references...just my ole
imagination to rely on...
which didn't do the tulip any justice at all!
So...I have decided that
in the interest of becoming a better observer of floral life
I will make it a point to visit Trader Joe's
this week and treat myself to a
one of their exquisite floral bouquets...
and then paint like crazy until the "cows come home"!
There...I've said it...well, written it...
right here in public even.
Expect great things! :)
P.S. Does anyone out there have any good tips
how to create loose spatter
on a painting without it looking like
like a kindergarten paint war??
( see above...)
Yes??? Fingers and toes crossed...
Drop me a line...LOL:)

"People from a planet without flowers
would think
we must be mad with joy the whole time
to have such things about us."
~Iris Murdoch

Friday, March 26, 2010

"An Open Letter...From Danny Gregory..." taken today from the Everyday Matters Group Blog:

"Dear Friends:

As you have heard, my wife Patti passed away last week. She was a lovely, creative person who gave me strength, inspiration, ideas and love. She was always extraordinarily positive -- despite what the pathetic initial media reports may have told tell you.

A couple of days ago, our friends put together a lovely tribute to her memory. Hundreds of people jammed the place, singing songs, sharing stories, crying, laughing, and celebrating her life and approach to it. She touched so many, and the spheres of her influences all came together on Wednesday night: artists,musicians, school friends, librarians, fashionistas, moms, dads, kids, chefs, florists, all celebrating the bright perspectives and willingness to take risk with which she infected them all. There was huge crowd out on the street that couldn't get in to share the festivities. I was never prouder of her.

Everyday Matters was the fruit of our family's mission to celebrate our daily gifts in the face of the random crap life throws at us. That mission grew from Patti's heart. The fact that she has gone does not diminish the importance of this mission to me and to all of us. Life is wonderful. Its riches don't lie in bank accounts or career success or power or fame. We just need to look around us, at the beauty of a wrinkled orange skin, the ray of sunshine across a wooden table, the shape of a napping pet, an abandoned shoe, a building against the sky. To reap those riches, I use a pen and a small book. I meditate on what I see, and transcribe that reflection in my book. The lines I make , sometimes sure and sharp, sometimes wobbly and vague, are the deposit I make in my account, the way I capture life's true rewards and value.

In the days following Patti's death, I lost my appetite, my ability to sleep, my concentration, my will. I hesitated to pick up a pen. Nothing seemed to matter, let alone the everyday. But then, after some time spent staring into space, I began again to draw. And I must and will continue. Drawing brings me meaning. To abandon it would betray Patti's memory and myself. I hope that if you are hesitating to draw, beating yourself up because you're not good enough, telling yourself you have no time to spare, feeling distracted and down, remember that, though life can be plucked from us at any moment, it is full of wonder and beauty. Keeping an illustrated journal is the perfect way to capture and treasure the gems that lie all around us. A few minutes a day make it all worth while.

Patti was never a member of the EDM group but she met many of its members, and loved the goals of the community. She made things all the time, knitting, sewing, singing, making collages, gifts, drawings, paintings, flower arrangements, photos, and more. Creativity was her passion and she loved people who loved to create. I hope you will help to keep her love and spirit alive.

Your pal,

I felt this to be "must read" for all of us.
It was Danny Gregory who started me on this journey.
Through him I met Anita.
She took me under her wing
and introduced me to a whole new artistic world.
I began my days as an artist/blogger...
the rest is history.
Every single minute of every single day
really DOES matter.
I rededicate my art to that purpose.

"Time is Running Out..."

...actually it is about to expire
as far as the Illustration Friday deadline
for last week's drawing prompt:
It was proving to be a rather tricky topic for me...
until I took a good long look
at our beautiful and bountiful lemon tree.
it's fragrance this season has been heaven like.
But, what a curious thing I found!
The lemon tree was bursting with fruit,
covered with new white buds
decorated with graceful white blossoms
heavily draped in pollen,
deeply skirted below by petals and stamens and all kinds of
expired flower parts which have
fallen to the ground!
ALL at the same time!!!
The branch I drew above was attached
to a branch with ripe fruit!
on this one branch I drew there were
multiple stages of life...
from a brand new a fully blooming flower...
to an expired flower bits...
which disintegrated upon the slightest touch...
(Ah CHOO!)
to the start of a tiny new lemon
not much more than a quarter of an inch in size...
deep green in color...
waiting to grow and bloom
next season!
This little tree just doesn't want to give up!
Maybe we can all learn an important lesson from that...:)
Illustration Friday: "EXPIRE"

“Wisdom is perishable.
Unlike information or knowledge,
it cannot be stored in a computer or recorded in a book.
It expires
with each passing generation.”
~Author Unknown

Thursday, March 25, 2010

"Ten Terrific Trades For Today..."

...#1 from Lubna in the U.K.
...#2 from Janet in Texas...
...#3 from Verlene in Oregon...
...#4 from Bonnie In Pennsylvania...
...#5 from Karen in Ohio...
#6 from Kristy in Kansas...
...#7 from Lisa in Arkansas...
...#8 from Janet in the U.K....
...#9 from Beth in Arizona...
...and last, but not least...#10 from Harriet in Indiana!
What a great week of fun mail...
a real collection is so rich in talent!
Pop in on any of these fabulous artists
to see more of their work...
and, as on any image to enlarge.
The detail in these cards is gorgeous! :)
Thanks all!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

"Timeless Thoughts..."

grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change,
the courage
to change the things I can,
the wisdom
to know the difference.”
Reinhold Niebuhr
(American theologian, 1892-1971)

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

"Winter 'Choose A Theme' Swap..." Illustrated ATCs...:)
The theme I chose was "Ancient Patterns"...
4 cards for the card as a hostess gift.

Since one player was unable to complete the task...
in my group
I received the three cards above
one of my own was returned...:)
The cards above are L-R from:
"Anaryawe" in Finland..."Portraits of Oscar Wilde",
Elina also from Finland..."Steam Engines",
Kati from California..."Nick Bantock style collages."

This was a really fun experience.
Hopefully, this spring there will be another similar swap!
(Click on images to enlarge to better see detail work.)

Monday, March 22, 2010

"Double Your Pleasure..."

...Double Your Fun...

two Views this Cactus Monday...instead of just one!
Happy Spring
in the Northern Hemisphere...
Happy Autumn in the Southern Hemisphere!
A cactus for each season...:)

"If I had my life to live over,
I would start barefoot earlier in the spring
and stay that way later in the fall."
~Nadine Stair

Sunday, March 21, 2010

"Behind The Scenes..."

Whether it be
smack dab right in the middle of the day...
or very, very late
while burning the old proverbial candle
into the wee hours
of the morning...
sometimes the planning and the research...
the trials and the errors...
become a whole
new art form in itself! :)

“Focus on the journey, not the destination.
Joy is found
not in finishing an activity
but in doing it.”
~Greg Anderson

Saturday, March 20, 2010

"Happy Spring!... "

"Printemps Heureux!"
"Gelukkige Bron!"
"Primavera Feliz!"
"Glückliche Feder!"
"Onnellinen Kevät!"
"Happy Wiosny!"
"שמח האביב!"
"Glad Fjær!"
Happy Spring!

Friday, March 19, 2010

"In The Nick Of Time..."

...I came up with an Illustration Friday sketch
and threw in a digital flip for fun!

Illustration Friday: "Subterranean"

“Not in Utopia, subterranean fields,
or some secreted island, Heaven knows where!
But in the very world,
which is the world of all of us,
the place where in the end
we find our happiness, or not at all!”
William Wordsworth

Thursday, March 18, 2010

"Exotic and Delightful..."

...Art Trading Cards arrived this week...

...from Laura in Georgia...

...from Teresita in Thailand...

...from Nicole in Pennsylvania...
...and from Lisa in California...:)
Another week of
additional beautiful and unique pieces...
more wonderfully talented artists to have met!
Thank you each and every one.
Pop in on these artists if you have a chance.
You never know...
you might become an art trading world traveller also!

Who has a trade may go anywhere.
Spanish Proverb

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

"Fluffy Pink Cotton Candy..."

from the "Hearts with Flava" series...:)
Have a sweet Wednesday!

"Seize the moment.
Remember all those women on the Titanic
who waved off the dessert cart."
~Erma Bombeck

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

"Designer Fabrics..."

...for everyday use and casual lifestyles seem to be
a popular marketing trend
Options and price points can range
from upper end Marimekko of Finland designs at
(I remember craving these designs in the early 70's...
and STILL loving them now...)
to the latest arrival/reveal (just yesterday, actually)
from "across the pond"
of the incredible more affordable collection
Shopping is certainly becoming an artistic adventure!
So I was thinking...
what about a "Water Blossoms of Arizona"
collection making it big time
somewhere??? LOL :)
Ah yes!
We must all have a dream!
All one has to do is take that first step...get this...
you can click HERE
for a link to a site called Spoonflower
which will actually take your artwork and
print it on fabric!
The wonderfully imaginative Jane LaFazio
did just exactly can see her results here!
Now how cool an idea is that !!!???
Happy Blooming Tuesday! :)

"We live in a web of ideas, a fabric of our own making."
~Joseph Chilton Pearce

Monday, March 15, 2010

"In Celebration Of Life..."

the coming of a long awaited Spring...
when thousands of thorny desert plants show
their fanciful frilly side.
It is that sorely needed...predictable, cyclical time of
soulful renewal and regeneration.
I herald its near, so very near...
with a big smile in my heart...
and an artistic Muse whose pen is ready to dance.
Today, I also HONOR
the incredible life force of Renee...
whose loving and beautiful spirit at last flies free...
renewed and regenerated and shining,
blooming in vibrant yellow...
swooping raven and there
in that glorious and sacred place...
where the only things that now circle her head
are starry nights and golden light.
I honor her life
with a big smile in my soul...
and bits of stardust in my sketchbook.

Our Lord
has written the promise of resurrection,
not in books alone,
but in every leaf in springtime.”
Martin Luther

Sunday, March 14, 2010

"Some Sweet Serenity..." a soothing Sunday blogpost...
(and another page from my 2010 Zen Journal.)

“Boredom is the feeling
that everything is a waste of time;
that nothing is.”
~Thomas S. Szasz

Saturday, March 13, 2010

"Trying Something New..." swirling together a mixture of
creamy DS Buff Titanium
with a shot of yummy iridescent gold
and adding
whatever chocolaty color combos of paint
I just happened to have sloshed
around on my palette.
in a true barista inspired style
I drew a
swirly heart atop some textured striped
scrapbooking paper...and
The end result was the start of yet another
brand new ATC series entitled:
"Hearts with Flava", baby...
that would be a 'mocha frappacino' flava,
to be exact...:)
Check out this recipe
to make a mocha treat of your very own...:)
Oooh, and also...
check out this collection HERE
of awesome photos of the fancy coffee art work
done with crema and foam...Yum!
Cuppa, anyone???

Friday, March 12, 2010

"I Am So Fascinated..."

by beautifully dyed fabrics
with exotic patterns from far away places.
I love the promise of the wonderful adventures
and stories each piece might reveal.
Presented here above is the second ATC from my
I have entitled this one
"Temple Sunrise"...and I have yet to write its story...:)
Any input? case you wondered...
the blue/green version above is a Microsoft digital flip-
a simple little thing which delights me
to no end. Enjoy! :)

“Never get so fascinated by the extraordinary
that you forget the ordinary.”
~Magdalen Nabb

Thursday, March 11, 2010

"Just What..."

...the (art) doctor ordered...:)
...a mega multiple trade from Melody in Utah...
...a cool scratchboard 4 X 4 from Sandra in Oregon...
...a digital art ATC from Cynthia in North Carolina...
...a winter window view from Anna in New York...
...springtime bliss from Marianne in the Netherlands
via Chicago, Illinois :)... Asian inspired 2:2 trade from Cheryl in Utah...
...a zentangle "Alice" tree from Lisa in Arkansas...
...and, finally, a young Frida from Heidi in Canada.
Enjoy one card daily with a warm cuppa,
a thankful smile, wide and long...
feel your throat pain
just melt away...Ahhh, Yes!
I only wish!!!
My spirit surely felt good though! :)
I see my medical doctor for a follow up today!
Fingers and toes crossed
I will soon feel some real strong progress...
begone raw throat, enough!