Thursday, June 30, 2011

Pep Talk

Do you ever feel defeated? Down on your self?  How will I survive? Not sure everything will work out? Think …is it me? All those thoughts and worries running through your head?

I finally found the courage to file for divorce, after 28 years of marriage, and 6 years of dating before that. Yes, 34 years of my life. Lately, I have had many of those self-defeating thoughts and worries about the future for me and my children.

I was talking to someone, much younger than myself, one day about all of these thoughts. I told the person that when I get like this I just need to think about the “pep” talk that I would give to other people looking to me for advice.

This much younger and obviously wiser than their years person said “well why don’t you write down just what you would say to other people that look to you for advice… then when you have these thoughts and feel down, pull out the paper and read it to yourself.”

OMG brilliant… this person is definitely a keeper in my life!

Sunday, June 26, 2011

My First Booth!

Saturday I participated in my first art fair. Luckily, I have a friend who use to show her work but has not done so in about 5 years. She loaned me her EZ-up, card rack and 2 - A frame panels to display work. The panels were covered in burlap that was faded. So for about $17.00 and the hard labor of my daughter... the panels we rejuvenated! 
My daughter graciously helped me throughout the day. I really think it was God's way of making me actually sit still and not really do much for 8 hours.

Here are a few shots of the booth. I sewed the edges of my Re-Discover Canvas that I painted in Alisa Burke's class as my backdrop...I sold a few prints and cards and made a small profit. This was a learning experience for me. The show took place close to my house so I thought it would be a good trial run. I met a few nice people too. I loved when children came into my booth. For some reason kids seem to like to look at my work... that makes me happy. My favorite comments are; "your work is cheerful" and "it makes me happy".

Friday, June 24, 2011

Art in the Park

"Paint Them Red"
There has been a lot going on over here since my 50th celebration! One of the events taking up so much of my time has been getting ready for Art in the Park in Newport Beach. This is my first art fair. A friend of mine graciously let me borrow her Pop Up and Art Displays while she is off in Italy with her niece for TWO weeks!!

If you are in Southern California, stop by Mariners Park in Newport Beach Saturday, June 25th from 9 until 5. Mariners at Dover Drive. There will be over 100 artists!

The above piece is a one of a kind original inspired by my trip to the Flower Fields in Carlsbad... no reproductions will be made so come and get it at the show!!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

5 and 50

April 28th I celebrated 5 years since my diagnosis and survivorship. Today I celebrate 50 years of life. I am really hoping that I signed up for an extended warranty!

A couple of years ago I had big ideas for today. I was dreaming about going to Italy to celebrate my daughter’s 18th and my 50th. We will not be going to Italy any time soon, but then I thought about where I was 5 years ago. How I was not even sure I would make it to 46. Fifty looked so distant. The American Cancer Society’s campaign for More Birthdays is such a great campaign. I just joined the movement! So many people dread 50. Cancer changed that for me. I am so grateful to be here today. I am grateful that I was here to see my daughter graduate from high school and turn 18. My hope is that I will be here to do the same for my son.

I am reading the book Simple Abundance by Sarah Ban Breathnach…although I am currently experiencing a Not-So Simple Abundance Plan. Today will be simple. My favorite pastry in the morning. A walk around my favorite island. Then to one of my favorite places with two of my favorite people for the rest of the day. That is it. That is all I need. Of course another birthday or 30 would be great too!

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

A New Header!

After my website was up and running, next on the list was an update to this little old blog! I decided to change and update a little at a time instead of waiting until I knew exactly what I wanted. Somewhat of a change for me being a planner and all, but change is good. I had met Laura through the Kelly Rae Roberts e-course. Then we became FaceBook friends and then I started following her blog. She had just done some work for Kelly Thiel and I really liked the clean look. So Laura and I started talking and she has been helping me achieve the changes that have been rolling around in my head for this blog. We have more changes coming but for now let me know what you think of the new header!

If you would like to purchase Kelly Rae's e-books... click on the link to the left and I will receive a small commission. If you need blog/marketing assistance click on the widget also to the left to reach Laura!

Monday, June 6, 2011


Sometime in 2010, Somerset Studios published a call for submissions for the theme “Fearless“. The questions that the request asked were: What does it mean to be fearless? What does fearless look like? What would you create if you were truly fearless?
Whenever I hear this word I automatically put the emphasis on the word fear instead of the word less. I understand the word fear. I have lived with fear all my life… probably on a daily basis. I am sure if most of us think about it, we all have.

I have been told that fear and love are opposite emotions. That it is hard to feel love when we feel fear and hard to love when we fear.
I had just finished the book by Gerald G. Jampolsky, MD “Love is Letting Go of Fear” when I started to work on this submission.

Somerset Studios has selected this piece for publication in the most current issue, May/June 2011. It appears on page 120. Thank you to Christen Olivarez and the Somerset Team. I am so grateful.

This is my artist statement for this piece:

Fearless… without fear… I chose to put the accent on the second word… fear LESS… I recently read the book “Love is Letting Go of Fear” by Gerald G. Jampolsky, MD. Gerald teaches us to let go of the past and stay focused on the present. “Revealing our true selves, the essence of which is love, is a matter of releasing those limited and limiting thoughts.” The message in this book is to live a life in which fear, doubt and negativity are replaced with optimism, joy and love. When I read the call for submissions, the title of this book and its message was still in my head. I chose to replace fear and less with love and more…

It has been over 6 months since I created this piece. Even though it is sometimes hard to do I still believe in its message…

Below is my progression:


Saturday, June 4, 2011

It Was Worth It!

Are you the person that is always asking your kids to pose for a picture to celebrate an event or just because today is Saturday?  I have always loved taking photos. Sure, I get the rolling of the eyes, the “come on Mom” but I keep asking and snapping anyway. This past week was one of those times that made it all worth it. For the past 13 years I have taken a first day of school photo of my daughter. Well except for this past year… I missed the first day, but it was a “close to the first day of school” photo.

Thursday she graduated from high school! Yeah. I found all of the photos…with exception of one year… She was entering 8th grade. I looked all over for that photo. Then I remembered, that year, the first day of school was about two weeks after my 8th chemo treatment. So that could mean either she did not want her photo taken that year, I forgot.. Chemo brain anyone… or I did take one and it will show up when she graduates from college! Luckily I had taken another photo close to that time which has become the “stand in”.

This is the culmination of 13 years of the “First Day” and of course her final day and what all of those other firsts led up to!

As a Junior she transferred to the Early College High School in our district. This is an amazing program. Students take both high school and college courses. She graduated with her high school diploma and almost 30 college credits. She wants to study Psychology to become a Marriage and Family Therapist and maybe an Art Therapist. She also wants to own her own Candy Store someday. She can counsel her patients and after their sessions they can purchase candy… sounds like a good plan!

We are so proud!

Friday, June 3, 2011

Larger than Life

Two weeks ago today I had so much fun. I attended the workshop at CREATE with Alisa Burke. I have always wanted to paint BIG. The largest canvas that I have done is a 30” x 40”. Recently, I have had this urge to “throw” paint so I decided to sign up for Alisa’s class.

When we moved to California in 2003, the home that we were renting had ugly tile floors. I bought this roll of canvas and painted a floor cloth for our kitchen. I currently use it in my studio: 

I took the remaining roll of canvas to the workshop. Alisa started the class with a demonstration and then she set us free.  I found myself standing there trying to figure out how big to cut the piece of canvas. Definitely stuck in my left brain…

Finally after wasting about 10 minutes, I told myself that I have always wanted to paint big. The floors were covered with plastic. I can always paint smaller later. Just cut the canvas and START.

I cut the canvas 52" x 50":

 and started:
I loved that Alisa really had no “rules” she gave us suggestions and ideas and guidance if we needed it, but it was a day of play.
Opening our minds to other materials that we may not have thought of using.
Also a way to use up our old supplies.
Layers and texture and pattern and color… oh my!
After lunch Alisa gave us another demonstration regarding the focal point and center of interest of our piece.
Again, not a “do it this way“, but more of a think about it and be more deliberate about this part of the piece.
I chose to add some large flowers across the center of the canvas.
 Added some colorful "centers".
I have been reading one of Kelly Rae Robert’s favorite books: Simple Abundance by Sarah Ban Breathnach… it has set me on the path of trying to re-discover MY authentic self. I had to include these few words that meant so much to me when I read them: denial to acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity.

Now the last decision is always when do you know when the piece is done? As I stood back and no impulses were coming to me regarding adding anything else I had my answer.
What a fun day!

When I told a few people in the know that I was taking a class with Alisa Burke the response was “you will love her… she is such a sweetheart”. I have to say they were right. The internet can introduce us to people we have never met and we may get a glimpse about their personalities, but there is something about spending time with a person and having that experience that is still so important and powerful. If you have a chance to take one of Alisa’s many classes… go for it… I may even meet you there!


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