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Thursday, April 28, 2011

She's my Invincible summer....

"In the depths of winter I finally learned there was in me, an invincible summer."
I painted this picture of my daughter, Rebekka, and put the above quote on it. Her autism is at times, so overwhelming, it's like a winter blizzard. A whiteout none of us can seem to navigate our way out of...pressing in on every side. Then her beautiful heart and shining spirit blaze into the darkness, and remind me of her invincible summer that lives within. She reminds me why I am working and trying so hard, travelling down so many rocky paths and exhausting days. For her. Her heart, her spirit, her future.
Everyone who meets her sees it. Her exuberance, joy, sparkle and light.

Then I thought to myself today...that quote is about me too. About all of us really.We have a beautiful invincible summer inside of us. We shine when we give, we love, we share, we sacrifice.

Thank you for all of your wonderful inspiring hearts! I am so blessed to have so much invincible summer in my life. Shine brightly my friends! I will talk to you on monday. xoxo Tam

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Artfest doll and two New doll faces!

My mom came up for Easter and brought the suitcase I couldn't fit (didn't want to pay extra for) on the plane. So I have the unfinished projects from my 1st and 2nd day classes. Michelle Allen's class was "whats your story?" Kindof a little life vignette...I did "my life is a circus". In the crazy chaotic up and down sort way...NOT the dancing bears and cotton candy everyday way. mmm...cotton candy. Sorry I get distracted easily! So here is the very first "art doll"I have ever made. She's a bit butchy...hahaha! but I like her.

She has a pompom on her hat you can't see well, and both of her knees are jointed with a bead. She also has painted toes, and I used cupcake liners for her little skirt.

This is her box. The black and white bunny will be on the top, holding heart balloons, and she will be balancing on the chair in a most circus like fashion. (like my son when he wants something that's too high up.) I once came downstairs to find him on top of a CRAZY stack ... a chair, then a step ladder, a footstool and....A BEACH BALL!! I am not kidding. He was teetering on top of it all trying to get a movie I had taken away! Hence the theme my life is a circus. That boy has problem solving skills I tell ya! LOL!

I found making my first doll so fun, I started making more when I got home. Here is the start of one of the heads...

I painted them last night...just a bit of a sneak peek. Mindy Lacefield got me hooked on the amazing pinky red paint you see on the faces. Thanks so much for the wonderful tip Mindy!

The second face in progress. You will have to check back to see them getting done!

Little closing thought for the day...."To enjoy yourself is the easy method to give enjoyment to others." Hope you all do something you love today! xo Tam

Monday, April 25, 2011

Professor Hootinsnoot!!

Professor Hootinsnoot stopped by this afternoon. He had heard I make killer mouse pellet crumpets." What! No, you must have me confused with someone else (who has scary cooking preferences I might add")!"Pish tosh! he exclaimed! I'll have a spot of tea then. "That I can do", I replied.

He filled me in on all sorts of bookish and owlish facts, and we had a delightful afternoon! LOL!

Some "Studio Saturday"pictures on a Monday cause that's the way I roll. Plus it was Easter, and my sons birthday, and I had company for the weekend! I know..."Excuses! Excuses!" I hear you saying...LOL!

This was the word I chose the year the kids were diagnosed with Autism. I put it above the window in my studio to remind me of miracles, and hope and silver linings.

Little vintage vignettes that I love to look at.

My door of ribbon. I wish I could tell you that this was my whole collection...and my husband wishes the same sentiment, however, this is about a third of my ribbon! YES! I LOVE ribbon. I bought a cool hanger from IKEA, put the ribbon onto metal jump rings, and hung them in a rainbow of awesomeness from my door.

Short and sweet today, I get a few hours to myself tonight, and I hope to make something fun in the art room! Hope you all had a wonderful Easter full of peace and blessings. xo Tam

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Gratifying Whim...

"The pleasure of gratifying whim is very great. It is known only by those who are whimsical."
James Boswell

This is Snoodle. I thought she was going to be a good playmate for Sprinkles, but I was wrong. She is a very naughty bunny (as you can see from the mooning picture below) I look up from working and she's eaten every last chocolate egg!! Well you know I couldn't possibly consume that much chocolate, so it must have been her...see how she's looking up and avoiding eye contact?

The starts of Blinkin.

Naughty Snoodle, wishing she could come to your studio and eat all of your chocolate eggs!

Thank you so much for boosting my confidence in gratifying my whims by your awesome comments. My inner critic keeps telling me different, and I really appreciate your encouragement! :o) Have a wonderful Good Friday everyone. xo Tam

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

WARNING! Mom's birthday present spoiler alert!!

This is my latest creation. The monster rag doll class at artfest looked so fun, I was really inspired to make some. I am not quite brave enough to do the fangs and whole bit yet...plus her name is Sprinkles...and a Sprinkles with fangs seems like a bit of an oxymoron no?? My mom was so in love with the class I thought Id make her one for her birthday. Don't keep reading mom! you'll spoil your surprise! LOL!

None of my kids clothes are safe now!! It was so much fun to make her! Her face is a piece of a vintage chenille blanket, her collar and arms are, what used to be some shirts of my daughters! hahaha! Here's a whole shot of her.

Seriously...you can tell me. Does this color make my butt look big??

Chillin' in the studio...waiting for the many brothers and sisters that are sure to be born this week!! Rabbits do have a nasty habit of multiplying. Be back soon with more!

Hop to it and go make art!! xoxo Tam

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Studio Saturday and Artfest Loot!

So I thought I would post a few little detail shots of studio number 1. Much to my dear husbands chagrin...I have started to convert the laundry room next to this studio into studio # 2. I just have too many loves I tell ya! And when I gently remind him that he has a 24 by 28 garage all to himself with absolutely no house items allowed...he just smiles and asks "what color were you thinking?" LOL! Good man! good man! I have a real problem with my addiction to ribbon, and glitter...this is just one small shelf of I'm ashamed to say (but not really ashamed) many more! Evil Martha! Why did she have to go and make so many awesome colors?
I have quite a few clocks in my studio (5 actually) so why is it I'm still always late to pick up the kids from school?
One of my walls of art from some of my favorite artists. {Hey Regina and Misty xo}
Vendors night at Artfest is intense! Imagine hundreds of women (and a few brave men) all scouting through amazing artists tables full of awesome stuff, and knowing if you walk away from the cool treasure you have in your hand, it probably wont be there in 15 minutes...but what about all the other tables?? What happens when I run out of money, and then find something too cool?? Do I really need to eat on the way home to canada?? No! I will spend my food money too! (insert maniacal laughter here) Ya, that's pretty much how it goes every year. My mom has had mercy on me every year and bought me food on the ferry ride home...but I think she is becoming wise to my ploy. (don't read that last bit mom). :o)

Amazing antique photos and treasures...
K, I didn't buy this at vendors night , but my wonderful friend Janne from Norway gave me her class sample!! Isn't it awesome? It's currently being made into something cool for me!
Beautiful little art blocks from Michelle Allens booth!
Ahhh! Mindy!! I went back to her booth and kept bringing people. Her stuff was mind blowingly adorable! If only I could have bought more! But there's always etsy...which I already went to today. {sheepish grin} She has coasters people!! how can I stay away?? I don't use coasters, but still! I need them :o) And magnets. Oh the sweet little magnets!
Last bunch of loot was from the dearest Sunny Carvalho. I would link to all these wonderful artists, but I am severely technologically challenged. Sorry, that's on my list of stuff to learn. Sunny said I was officially a stalker once I returned to her booth three times. HAHA! I really respect her amazing talent, and I don't think she actually sleeps...seriously. She is gifted in so many areas. Very fun to shop at her table. I got this beautiful copper bracelet...
This awesome purse, with a print of one of her paintings on the front.
And this is Basil. She is a hand sculpted, hand painted doll. She looks like me...well maybe my nose is smaller. ;O) I couldn't pass her up. They were gone from her table in less than 10 minutes! Check out her blog to see how many cool ones she had.

Hope you all have a splendid weekend, and your hands find beautiful things to do and make!

xoxo Tam

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

WOW!! Back From Artfest!!

Artfest is always such an incredible time...but this year was my best year yet. The fort and surroundings are so full of beauty... Our classrooms are historical and quirky.
The ocean is only a quick walk away.

And I get to leave behind 3 feet of snow for tulips and sunshine. sigh...
Trades are one of my favorite parts of artfest. It's nice to know you don't have to make them, but it is really fun to stretch and imagine what would make a good trade. The first year I went to artfest, I had no idea what to expect. I made 20 of these little metal tins....
I collaged and hand painted them...

and filled them with all kinds of pearls and beads and a shell I had put a special word into, as well a few got some teeny tiny glass starfish my Aunt Deb had made. Well, they were gone the first night. 20 was definitly not enough. LOL!

The second year I made small plaster hearts that I painted and put whimsical sayings and wings onto. A bit of wire, glitter(of course) and some beads to finish.
This year I made 60 of these tiny glass glitter bottle creatures with hand sculpted paperclay heads. I painted the faces (and put glitter on them! haha!) Then sewed a ruffled ribbon collar to them. Lots of people don't get quite as elaborate, but it is just so much fun to make little things like this to give away, I am already trying to see what I can come up with for next year.
My classes this year were such a blast. I had such a hard time deciding. Finally I picked the wood totem class with Karen Michel. She is so incredibly talented. I have admired this class on show and tell night for 3 years, so I finally took it. I actually jumped up and down in class when she showed us how to achieve her distressed wood technique. Yes, I did. I used a theme on mine, with vintage sewing and antique things.
Antique buttons, a vintage spool cut in half ( by my mom in her hotel room! LOL!)
An antique safety pin and 1930's mother of pearl buttons. Karen also taught us how to make our own paint, and was so wonderfully generous. It was really a perfect class (except too short!)
This is my second day class with Michelle Allen. If you ever can, take a class from her. She is so imaginative, and creative and funny. I loved her class! She showed us how to make these adorable paperclay figures, and how to paint them. We also made these awsesome shadow boxes to put them in. I had to send everything else from that class home with my mom, so I don't have pictures of my box or other character yet. I put a crackle finish on my bunny to distress him a little, and I love how he turned out. It was so interesting to see the amazing differences in everyones ideas and work. That is one of my favorite parts about being an artist. Seeing how every brain creates and works so differently to come up with such an amazing array of work from the same class. I would have loved to post some examples of the teachers work, but I didn't ask for their permission so check out their blogs for inspiration!

I have been so blessed to get Misty 3 years in a row now. All I can say is wow! She has been so influential in my art, and how I now veiw creativity. I absolutely adore her wonderful heart and her amazing classes.
This painting is actually from my last years class with Misty, but my mom has my painting from this year in her car...so I'll have to post it later.

My most favorite part of Artfest though is the people!!
Mom creating into the wee hours of the night in our dorm!
Hysterical Michelle being goofy and wonderful!
Amazing artist Mindy (who I totally geeked out over and went back to her vendor table 3 times!) Those are her adorable little monster rag dolls.
Incredibly gifted and generous Misty (who I have a secret artist crush on! LOL!!)
Super talented Janne from Norway, who blows me away with her art and her kindness!
Kindred spirit Regina, who I only met in the hallway a few times last artfest, but because of the wonderful world of art blogs, I got to greet with a big hug this year. Her creativity is so inspiring! I didn't get pictures of my Sunny and Cheryl and Dottie and Sharon and many others who made artfest so wonderful for me this year. I can't wait to go back! Hope you all had a safe journey home, and I am so excited to see what we all create this year.