A Quest For Focus


** My Paradise

Called Home **

Hot and Loving It!

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Seems mother nature skipped spring for us up here and headed straight for summer, but that's ok by me - at least it's here! We rarely turn the AC on since we get such a nice breeze coming off the lake we just open all the windows in the house. My studio however is on the other side of the house and breezes are not as plentiful but I love it anyway...something about being hot and sweaty while creating is just a good thing!
Last night was so gorgeous I packed up some of my things and took them out to the gazebo to work on, it is a wedding guestbook/album as a gift for a wedding in October, her colors are yellow and olive green so I used one of my favorite fabrics (it came in 2.5" strips). I have a pretty clasp coming in the mail to hook to the leather pieces to shut it but just tied it for these pictures in the meantime:

We took the boat out for the first time finally - just a gorgeous sunset.

This song has no relevance to this post, it's just what I'm listening to at the moment and I dig the video!

Life is sweet...................................at the Shores

For the Love of Books

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

I've quit waiting on my new camera to get pictures of my handbound books - I am very sure that when Tom went to purchase it he never completed the transaction *sigh* I'll order it myself but for now I stomped out to the deck and took pictures the best I could for my shop....which has now opened, there are a few on the right sidebar if you scroll down. I never really knew how hard it was to open one, I am not very good with trying to advertise and describe my things so any help or feedback would be greatly appreciated. They allow for 14 tags and I get stumped after about 5 or 6! Are my prices too high? UGH...this is just not easy :o(
Now I will leave you with a sweet song by Peter Gabriel "The Book of Love" in honor of my newly bound love for sale!
Soaking up the sunshine finally!............................at the Shores


Sunday, May 23, 2010

Ok, no cool art (or what I think is cool) But I will take you through a funny thing that happened to me this afternoon.
We have a gazebo that is off the deck from the house, I normally hang a few baskets of flowers around it. Tom and I picked up some petunias since my geraniums didn't do so well there last year  - my guess, not enough sun. Anyway I pulled the first old pot down, replaced it with my new found purple goodies, went on to the second, reached up and and found 5 little yellow heads that started to peep themselves silly. I was shocked, all I thought was  DO NOT TOUCH THEM....really, would they die if I had?!? Not sure but it wasn't going to be on me if they had. I set the basket down on the railing and they one by one jumped to the ground. May I tell you, this DUCK laid eggs in a hanging basket 10 fet off the ground. Here is how it happened (best as I can recreate):
The pot after they ran for their lives:
I ran like a mad woman into the house looking for ANYTHING that would take a picture of those lil troopers marching to the water (sort of put me in the mind of General Sherman marching to the Atlantic but without the fires and they were cuter) I only caught the last 2 leaping for momma:
Here they are with momma (yes, yes...crappy picture) they are pulling up the rear:
All's well with the wild life.......................................at the Shores
**I've added a couple videos to a couple earlier posts, see a few posts below. Who knows, this might be a new tend here ;)

For Your Listening Pleasure

Friday, May 21, 2010

Today was my patient visit day and staying true to form I am completely wiped out so I will leave this to entertain you until I am up for the task! My very favorite - since forever!

Snuggling in..............................at the Shores

Exit Through the Gift Shop

Thursday, May 20, 2010

For anyone who pops by this blog might have seen me mention Banksy a time or two and tonight I was wondering when or if his new movie "Exit Through the Gift Shop" would be playing around here - highly unlikely, but a girl can hope. I got turned on to him by Jeannie a person whom I've never met in person but have the great fortune to trade art and emails over the past year or so and consider her a friend. So, when I started doing ATC's I was also in an online class taught by Mary Ann Moss for "stencilry". I learned to cut my own stencils and started using them on my ATC's and Jeannie has gotten a couple even, I love cool stencils and love cutting them even more but love the surprise after spraypainting them and seeing just how they turned out the mostest (yeah, not really a word, but it's my blog and I'll use what I want). Anyway, Jeannie saw a Banksy link a while back and had to share it with me THANK YOU, JEANNIE!!
This guy is fascinating in my opinion - I dig good street art, always have but this guy beats all, his guerrilla art and cleverness floors me and nobody knows who he is! He's left his trail of spraypaint all over the world and last week his mark was left in Detroit....whoda thunk it?!  The images here are from that Motor City drive-by, just look how he used the chain that was already hanging    there pre rat attack. Photos (I believe) and article is by Travis Wright @ Metro Times Article about Banksy's Detroit visit   

Dreaming of spraypaint and brick walls.............at the Shores

From Pysical Graffiti

Going to California

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

".......Standing on a hill in my mountain of dreams, Telling myself it's not as hard, hard, hard as it seems......."  ♪ ♫
As promised, no new journal today even though I did make a 5x6 one while having my coffee this morning. This was for a swap where you had to make an ATC you picked a subject that normally HAS hair and then substitute the hair for anything BUT hair. Ever since I got in this swap I've been singing "Going to California" over and over in my head every time I thought about the swap so I went with it!

♪" I'll meet you up there where the path runs straight and high" ♫....................at the Shores

Yep, Another One

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Since it has been rainy and cold (and have a plethora of chipboard) I tried another new binding and loooooove it! I did a very funky size too, it's 4.25"x 11". I even got brave and modified it a little, the tutorial just had the binding on the spine straight but I scrunched it and added a little bead. It's called a buttonhole binding, you get a peek at the paper thru the 2 "windows.

I've got a new ATC almost finished I'll post tomorrow to spare anyone of yet another journal! 
Pleased as can be, I am......................at the Shores

Another New Journal

I managed to get another journal done for my etsy shop in between trying to straighten up this house. Still no sign of my new camera so I guess I'll wait a few more days before I start shaking some trees. I don't want to open my shop without good photos so I'll just bug anyone who comes by my blog here with lousy pictures of them.
This one was done with the Belgian binding, batik fabric (what else?!) and a print of my Romeo & Juliet handcut stencil.

Sick of this cold, rainy, crappy weather...........................at the Shores


Monday, May 17, 2010

We just spent the weekend in Kokomo, IN with our kids and grandkids. Our oldest grandson was baptised and a BBQ followed. Yummmmm!  I could just eat these lil ones up! 

I've been having a hard time getting any momentum with making my journals due to having to scrounge for chipboard/cardboard covers....well, I solved that problem. I ordered enough chipboard from a local company for 50 journals WOOOOOT! No more rootin' around for pizza boxes, beer boxes etc. Yes, I know recycling is the way to go but it  just slows me down too much, so for now I will blaze through these:
A time to bind.................at the Shores

Read the Label

Saturday, May 15, 2010

This is just a part two from my last post. I finished the journal for my DIL. As I was getting ready to bind this journal I needed to spray the painting I did in the previous post with a fixative since I used some oil pastels for His head covering sooooooooo I picked up the can and sprayed the page real good only to find out it wasn't fixative - it was SPRAY MOUNT! Ugh, the picture was ruined, one big sticky mess! The lesson about reading the label has been learned :o|

Double checking the labels..........................at the Shores


Thursday, May 13, 2010

So, I needed to make a journal for my step-daughter-in-law for her birthday and figured she would use it for either taking notes at church or maybe bible study...whatever. So I made pretty covers (I'll post it next) and put put plenty of papers in it but thought I would try cutting a Jesus stencil for the first page to make it a little extra special. I cut my lil heart out for at least an hour, spraypainted the image and scurried downstairs to show Tom, he looked at it for a bit...then a bit longer, finally I asked him if he thought my painting could pass for Jesus - he said "Sure, nobody knows what he looks like anyway" GAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH! Here he is:

He doesn't look like a Charles Manson does he?!? Does he look too intense?  Hmmm, maybe, and perhaps with good reason. 
Aggravated and yet always amused...................at the Shores


Tuesday, May 11, 2010

My son's birthday is Sunday, big number 24. It rattles me just thinking about how old my kids are, neither are married nor have any kids but I am a step-Omi to 6 LOL! My step-daughter Randi came over Sunday because this was where she felt like spending mother's day. Her husband brought the two sweet boys over for a little bit and we crafted our butts off for a couple hours, funny how two kids, 6 & 4 have such different artsy styles, we had a blast. They then went on their merry way but Randi stayed and visted more, it was such fun and Tom was over the moon to have his daughter hang out with us for the day/night.

As always I asked Frankie (my son) what he wanted for his birthday, he wanted a authentic Germany World Cup jersey and asked if I would paint him the FIFA World Cup 2010 logo.....the things I do for my kids! Here it is all done, I'm pleased it was an easy one it's 8x10:
It was perfect timing on the jersey, two of my aunts were coming to the US to visit my mom so I asked if they'd pick one up for him - mission accomplished! I am sooooooooooooo happy that when Renee' had her birthday last month she just wanted to go shopping for clothes, I just happened to be in Georgia on her birthday week and happily obliged. Whew! Both done, at least until Christmas.

Here are a couple journals I have ready for etsy, if my new camera ever comes I'll take proper pictures and get em on there, sure have no idea as to how to price them though.
The blue one is covered in batik fabric and has acid free " brown paper bag" paper, the green has green paper and one of my paintings printed onto fabric then sewn to some pretty batik material (have you noticed I am a batik fabric junkie?!)
Welp, that does it for me on this rainy, dreary, yucky-but-perfect-for-artin' sort of day.....................at the Shores


Monday, May 10, 2010

Just a quick post today. I've just finished up a "Splatter!" ATC swap:
This swap required a splatter of some sort and I had been hoping for more of a bird poo type splatter (sorry, no other way I could think to put it) it just didn't come out that way but I still like it. I cut a captured fairy stencil and put it all on a brick wall - yeah, I know, another brick wall - I just seem to be in a Banksy sort of mood......................at the Shores

Sweet Day

Saturday, May 08, 2010

I tried to make this post last night but really couldn't. You see, I spent Thursday and Friday at a childrens bereavement camp as one of the councelors and emotionally I was drained. Every five minutes I'd burst into tears, these poor children at 6 or 7, the things they have had to deal with is overwhelming - It's hard as an adult to deal with a death of a parent or other loved one. I had one of those little ones in my arms crying, my heart just ached. She then stopped and looked up at me, her eyes still wet with tears and she pasted a bright smile on her face and said "Happy Birthday" - I just melted, that image will be with me as long as I live. 
At lunch the kids and staff sang happy birthday to me and brought out this beautiful cake, I was beyond touched.
When I got home I found an amazing gift in my mailbox, a lovely book. Every single page filled with beauty and color. You see, it was made just for me by my amazing friend Susan. She was a caring, sweet, wonderful person back in high school and her lovliness has only gotten more grand as these years have passed. Thank you, friend - I am speechless at the love you put into making this just for me:

the inside cover

Here are a few pages before my old camera ran out of memory space :o\

This whole book is filled with wonderful things - THANK YOU, again, Susan...my day was truly perfect!.........................at the Shores

Alter-ed Ego

Monday, May 03, 2010

Ahhhh! Had a fantastic time in Chicago, what a great city to play in for a weekend - tons of photo ops but getting Tom to slow down for my follies is tough at times.
Here are a couple of some "Wrigleyville" street entertainment, this guy was a nut, he went two full rotations on that bar around his bike (someone PLEASE save me from these crappy Blackberry pix - husband has 4 days to get me a new camera for my birthday)
The only art I've finished lately is for an altered magazine image swap, so here she is - before and after:
My Alter-ed Ego
That's a bazillion (give or take a few) french knots for her hair LOL!! I think she looks quite hip ;o) 
Oh, and I also forgot about a lil painting I did for bandeaus nephew's birthday across the pond in Canada, he asked her to give him some art lessons and she's giving him among other things a  pad of art paper I believe and asked some people if they send some words of wisdom for the first pages, I painted a brick wall, used some stencils I had cut that I thought a young dude would like and added quotes for my contribution:
Gotta tidy up my art space for the next big creative etsy spurt I feel 'a comin along.............at the Shores


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