Paint the Sky with Stars

Paint the sky with stars

I am a big Enya fan and after painting this layered and spattered evening sky art journal page and letting it sit for a few days, the song Paint the Sky with Stars came to mind and those words gave me a good way to finish the piece. I like to let things sit and think about them instead of just rushing in and finishing without letting it percolate.

A friend of mine kept asking me every time I saw her, “Did you finish that [whatever it was that I was working on the last time I saw her]?” and I finally had to explain that is not why I make things. I enjoy the creative process and I just want to have fun. I don’t care if I finish an art or quilt piece at any given moment unless it is intended for a specific recipient because that is not my raison d’ĂȘtre [reason or justification for existence]. I am a process person, not a product person. I love the process!

I have big news! I will be teaching 2 mixed media art workshops for teens through adults as a volunteer at Epoch Arts in East Hampton, Connecticut in March and April. The workshops are Art Journaling and Inspirational Cards and each workshop will have 2 sessions. I am very excited about this opportunity to teach at this “arts for youth” nonprofit organization in my home town. I am working on handouts which will be shared on my offerings page. Teaching art has been a dream of mine for a long while and now it is coming true!

I have been thinking about vulnerability a lot lately and why it is important. Brene Brown has done a lot of work in this area and her Ted talk on vulnerability is one of the top ten most viewed TED talks in the world. Vulnerability is basically uncertainty, risk, and emotional exposure. Her research uncovered a common thread in those who embrace vulnerability: “They talked about the willingness to say, ‘I love you’ first… the willingness to do something where there are no guarantees… the willingness to breathe through waiting for the doctor to call after your mammogram.” This really resonates with me right now and I wanted to share it with you.

Follow Your Dreams


I walked down to the lake on Saturday afternoon wearing just a sweatshirt because we had an unusually warm sunny day for a Connecticut winter. There are a few park benches where you can sit and look at the ripples in the water and let time slowly pass by. It was so peaceful.

When you let time stand still like that you feel rejuvenated and renewed. You gain perspective on your life. Later on, when I was home, I went downstairs to my art studio and exuberance is what came out in my art journal. Giving myself space to just be let the feelings flow through me.

I had attended a volunteer meeting at Epoch Arts that morning and I am happy to say that I will be teaching two mixed media art workshops there in the next session of classes, art journaling and inspiration cards for ages 12 through adult. Teaching and sharing art has been a dream of mine for a long while. You need to follow your dreams.

Tonight I decided to relax and not do anything but daydream and listen to the rain on the skylight. My thoughts drifted like the ripples on the water at the lake and I realized I need to spend more time like this and less time rushing around in busyness and activity. The world isn’t going to stop turning if I miss a meeting. The dishes in the sink can wait until tomorrow. The To Do list will always be there and most items on the list can wait another day, or longer.

What is truly important? The people you love – your family, your true friends, that special person in your heart and life. And you are so important – that person inside of you who needs to take time for self, to relax, and to just be.

Painting on Canvas – Believe

Canvas believe

I painted this canvas last weekend to celebrate the new year. My son gave me a package of 10 high flow golden acrylic paints for Christmas and I was eager to try them out. They are liquid paints in squeeze bottles and the colors are brilliant and super saturated.

I made a mess on my art table and got paint all over my hands. It was fun! I started out by dripping cool colors of paint (blue and green) on the canvas and spreading the paint around with an old credit card and a paintbrush.

While the paint was drying, I looked for my stencils and thought about which ones to use. The paint was not drying fast enough, so I used my heat gun to speed up the process. Then I added some warm colors to the canvas (red, orange and gold) and spread those around.

At this point the painting had a bit of a glow but it was looking kind of dark and I did not like that. Unlike watercolor paints which I had used for many years, you can always paint over something that you want to change with acrylics.

I chose an ivory bottle of craft paint, added some beads of this below the top edge of the painting, and tilted the canvas so that the paint would run down to the bottom edge. Now the piece was starting to take shape.

I had a circle opening cut out of plain paper and used that to paint a circle on the right side. The paint bled underneath the paper, so I used a baby wipe to restore the round shape. There is always a way to recover from a mistake and move on, if you open your eyes and see. Painting is like life and life is like painting.

I used my random circles template (this one came from Artist Cellar) and put a band of small ivory circles down the left side. Then I carefully put some small purple circles on top of the large ivory circle.

I stood back and looked at the canvas. The piece was saying what I wanted it to say. For me, it held that childlike wonder I feel when I look out my window and it is snowing outside. I added the word believe and I was happy.

Believe in miracles. Believe in the small things too. Most of all, believe in yourself.