Clearly I've been away from my blog for a bit. I've been thinking of this post for some time now and although I will try not to write a hugely long post, I would like to offer some heartfelt words on where I have been. I started off 2014 returning to work full-time. I work in Production Accounting for film and television and took a small movie, locally. I was really excited to go back full-time, I felt ready and I was excited to work with new people. However, the show proved difficult (an understatement) and I found myself working extremely long hours and the environment became more and more stressful and tense. This certainly didn't leave much time for self-care and creative projects. What happened however, was something that I didn't expect, as the show was coming to an end it was like a brick hit me in the head and I suddenly realized that I was the square peg this time, I was odd man out. See without going into a ton of boring detail, this was a small, independent film, something I'm not used to with people who knew each other (some of them quite well, they'd worked together before). I come from a very different background and close to 14 years of studio backed projects, working with people who have been doing this a very long time and tend to run a pretty tight ship. It's neither here nor there and one way isn't necessarily better than, it's just what I'm used to. I pushed too hard in a world where my experience really didn't matter and all though I do not agree with some of the things that were done, or the way many things were handled, I take responsibility for not realizing sooner that I didn't fit there.
In the meantime I was stealing a moment now and again to check my favorite blogs or scroll through a few photos on Instagram late at night or while I crammed in lunch at my desk. Before I knew it that little thing called "blog envy" snuck up and tapped me on the shoulder. By the end of the show I was feeling less than, I was down, defeated and extremely tired. I hadn't the motivavtion for much of anything and just started slipping further behind. My creative life had pretty much been abandoned minus a sketchbook page here and there and now my job life seemed confusing. Did I even want a job in Prouction anymore? And, always the bigger question, now what? Let's just say it got a bit worse before it got better. I couldn't remember the last time I felt this way. I knew at some point it would be up to me, and only me, to start pulling myself together. And trust me when I say, too much time spent online looking at other people's lives can be relentless and exhausting. If I'm busy doing that I don't really have to focus on my own life, right? The problem is that all of that time on social media and other people's blogs and websites can make you feel inadequate and like you will never catch up, to what I'm not exactly sure.
So, come April (and I couldn't even believe it was April), I did what I could. Small steps here and there getting back into a routine, back in my studio, back to the gym, back to life. I decidedly spent more and more time away from the computer. I took a few small trips, Canada, San Diego and San Francisco to step away and seek that Inspiration which to me is like air. When I returned, I got organized, I can not stress strongly enough how important I think this is! You need to feel comfortable and at ease in your space. I had too much clutter and really just too much stuff in general. I cleaned out everything! I took the house and my studio apart and spent weeks putting it back together and getting rid of stuff. Shorlty after I finished I began work on classes I now offer here at my home and studio. I knew I just had to go for it, it felt awkward sending out that first email and flier about classes starting in May. But I did it, this was my first group in May.
What I didn't see until now was how all of this would somehow fit together. See, that crazy job lead me to really look at myself and the kind of person I am. I was less than proud of myself on more than one occasion during that show. It's hard to admit when you're wong or that you don't "fit" somewhere or with someone. Feeling so defeated after that job eventually is what sprung me to action here at my home and studio. Although not having work for some time can be difficult it allowed me to not only get really organized it allowed me the time to plan classes and that was my start. I am now doing art everyday, loving my home and studio and yes, I will be starting a job with Fox, a place where I "fit." I am happiest when I get to be doing a little of everything, working, playing, creating, traveling and simply being home. There is a place for all of these things, it's ok to wear many different hats. I can't be happy working crazy hours and not even seeing the outdoors for almost 5 days at a time or burried deep in my computer wondering why everyone else seems to be doing what they love; nor can I be happy if I am not making the time for art and creativity. I think I forgot how much I love just sitting and drawing.
The moral of the story, don't do what I did. Although it is clear to me that I needed to step away I didn't need to abandon the things that I love. When we do this we slowly cut off our oxygen. Whatever you can muster right now, do that, or keep doing that. A 30 minute bath, 30 minutes in a sketchbook or journal after everyone else is asleep, 10 minutes to meditate before running out the door... Whatever it is keep it. Keep at least one thing that is yours and that helps to keep your soul smiling. I have been lost this year and I was forgetting to look up and rememebr that life is happening all around us, all the time, and we need to be present so that we can see the things that truly move and inspire us. How else can we figure out the next step...
This is where I have been. Trying to figure it out. Knowing now that I did not see this "break" coming nor did I think it would last as long as it has. Trying on many different hats and realizing that I like wearing all of them. Figuring out how much of what fits where. Learning that I can work with the studios and still live a creative life. Understanding that Inspiration is everything. Embracing my imperfect self and learning to love her.
As much as I hate to say it, 2014 has been a bit rocky so far... more on that later! However, I have been back in the studio since last week and remembering how good it feels to get out in the world and seek inspiration. Most of you know how much I love flowers! For me, they are truly an endless source of inspiration! So yesterday I spent the entire afternoon at one of my favorite places, Descanso Gardens. I spent the day, walking, photographing, and doing color studies. A beautiful way to spend an afternoon.
It's almost Valentine's Day! Every year I like to try and come up with something fun to put on co-worker's desks, something yummy to add to my Husband's lunch or find a cute little box and mail it to my best girlfriends. This year I decorated these adorable little clay pots and added all sorts of goodies! You don't need a lot of fancy supplies. The main ingredients are the pots, any paint and candy. I grabbed a variety of supplies but didn't actually end up using all of them.
Once you have everything together, grab your little pots and just paint with a foam brush, the top of each pot. Let the paint completely dry and then you can add some dots, some doodles, whatever you like! I used mod podge and glitter around one! Can't go wrong with glitter!
While your paint dries grab any tissue paper you might have and cut small squares to tuck into the tiny pots. If you are using wrapped candy this step can be skipped.
Now for the little flags! Again I gathered all sorts of things but didn't end up using a lot of it! If you don't have all sorts of little embellishments these could be as simple as writing a message or printing out a Valentine phrase on the computer and wrapping it around a toothpick! A lot of the supplies I show here are from the dollar and two dollar bins at Michaels.
Have fun! You could easily make your own embelishments by cutting hearts out of any patterend or plain construction paper. Felt is a really cute touch for the flag too!
Woohoo! Grad the candy and eat....Joking! Grab the candy and assemble. Just take a moment and see which candies you like with which pot and add your little Valentine flags and Voila! You have a perfect little Valentine's Day Treat for loved ones, besties and co-workers.
2013 was a crazy year for me! I have so many things to be grateful for...my beautiful studio, my amazing family, a supportive Husband, the ability to work part-time all year, my first solo art show and teaching! Teaching at C2E (Coach2Edify) was a major highlight in 2013. I am so pleased to continue teaching in 2014 and I do hope that we continue to grow. Mayra, C2E mastermind and founder, has such a vision and I love what she is constantly working towards, it is a gift to be part of her "tribe."
I had the priviledge of teaching two Vision Board classes to two very different groups of people. A small group of women and a group of students. While researching Vision Boards and looking for examples...etc. I came across an article from Psychology Today titled, "Throw Your Vison Boards Away." And although I wasn't overly joyed by the title I sat and read the whole thing; and I was so glad I did! Bascially the author was simply stating that you don't get to create a pretty board, look at it everyday and magically things will happen. The article was about the hard work it takes to achieve your goals. And although I didn't love the negative tone of the article, it was, in fact, a really good reminder that setting an intention, dreaming, creating a vision board...and so on is really Step 1. Because I am an Artist, a very visual person and visual learner, I have been creating vision boards since 2007. Having a visual component is important for me! However, that one article changed how I taught this class and it set up my teaching for the first quarter of 2014 at C2E. The first three classes I'll be teaching will be focused on Action Steps! Now that we have a visual of what we would like to accomplish, what steps will each of us take to make sure that we are staying true to our vision and working toward our goals.
Here are a few tips that I mentioned in my classes. 1. Try not to include more than 5 things for your vision board. Generally 3 to 5 goals are good and not overwhelming when you start to break them down. 2. Only you can decide what is visually pleasing and exciting for you. Make sure that your board is something that you will want to look at each day. Use colors that you love! 3. Try to keep the board organized. You will see below that my board looks a bit crazy but there are four main themes in my board, organized around each corner. Organiztion, Fitness, Art & Creativity and Self-Love. 4. Remember as you create your board these goals will need to be broken down into action steps. If you think of ways you can incorporate these steps in your life (as your working), write them down!! 5. Have FUN!
Here is a peek at my new Vision Board and some examples from the classes. 2014 Here we come!!
...my favorite kind of table, messy creative fun!
Yay for Small Business Saturday! I am so pleased to announce that my Etsy Shop is now stocked with prints, pouches, ornaments and more! In honor of Small Business Saturday and the Holiday Season that I love, I have done away with shipping charges! From now through December 31st please enjoy Free Shipping!
I am also thrilled to announce the Gift Show going on locally here in Woodland Hills at Art Departure! After my October Show they asked me to stick around for the gift show which runs through December 31st. If you are in the Los Angeles area please check it out! They are featuring about a dozen local Artists and they have beautiful jewelry and gifts available. Below is a pic of what my little "area" looks like at the gallery, I love what they did!!
Happy Shopping and Best of Luck to all of you Creatives out there!
Choose what size ball you would like to work with. I'm using the small size for this project. Pull the top out and set aside. Grab your spray paint and start spraying! You can choose as many colors as you'd like or stick with just two or three. I am using bright pink and gold spray paint.
Let the ornament dry completely (it doesn't take long) maybe 10 minutes unless you go really heavy. Grab your paint pens, acrylic paint and any embellishments you'd like to use. Paint, draw, doodle...have fun! For "graffiti style" fonts and shapes large bubble letters and bold shapes outlined in black and white work well. You can always google images to help you find a look you like. I filled in my letters with gold sharpie paint pen and painted my heart with basic craft paint. I also added some doodles and shading with black & white paint pens.
Next, grab your hot glue gun. Pop your top back inside your ball if you haven't already. I used a scrap of fuzzy leopard trim that I had left over. This is where you could use any type of material, ribbon or trim to glue around the cap. You could certainly leave the silver top but I feel covering over it gives the ornament a nice finished look.
And, Voila! That's it, so fast, easy and fun. I love that every one of these comes out so different. The possibilites are endless and you will find so many opportunities to add your own style and personality. I've just finished a whole basket of these little guys for a Holiday Gift Show! Now it's your turn to get busy! I would love to see what you come up with.
I love Fall. Even here in Los Angeles, where it's still warm and sunny, the weather takes a definite shift. The mornings and evenings are cool, we've had some grey and I love it when there are big powdery clouds in the sky. I also love the colors of Fall. Our trees out front are turning a gorgeous color of red and how can you not love all of the orange this time of year. Speaking of orange, I do love pumpkins. I always say, "I can eat pumpkin anything!" I adore pumpkin lattes, pumpkin cookies, pumpkin loaf, pumpkin ravioli...Oh! and pumpkin soup, it's time to start making all of those yummy soups.
Another wonderful thing this time of year is preparing for the Holidays. I can't believe it but, yes, I'm already making Christmas ornaments. I'm under a deadline to get a lot of work over to Art Departure for a gift show that opens on November 16th. Below is a peek at my Graffiti Christmas Balls, so fun to make! If you'd like to give it a go, I'll have a DIY up on the blog Monday. In the meantime, I would love to hear about some of your preparations and projects for this coming Holiday Season....
I am currently taking Flora Bowley's online course Bloom True. This honestly couldn't have come at a better time. After finishing all the work for my show, tons of work around the house and throwing a fabulous 40th with my family and friends.... Frankly, I was wiped out and not feeling (exactly) inspired. I found myself wondering, what next, what do I want my work to be, what direction do I want to go? Because I have had this class to keep up on I've really had to push myself to keep going and keep painting. Flora has opened up a whole new world for me! A way to simply let go and have fun, not to worry about the final piece. It's layer after layer of paint, play, dragging, mark making, writing, personl imagery, stamping....you name it. On my first canvas my flowers appeared quickly which was kind of funny because it was like oh yeah, there it is! Still very much my own and my style. I don't know if I'll ever move away from flowers and images from nature. The white outline was me dragging a small brush around the canvas. Canvas 2 is still very much developing, yesterday I was dragging a brush around with black paint and there are some leaves of some sort coming out? Here's a peek at what I've been up to.
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