I had an idea about a month ago to do alphabet ornaments. I made "A-D" and needed somewhere to hang them. While shopping in one of my favorite haunts, there just waiting for me, was the bark of a tree. It was perfect. So off I went to continue on "E" and so on. I am now on "O" and the idea hit me that the entire tree should be a sculpture because I wanted to be able to view them all around the branch as I am going to need the space for all the letters. I found the perfect base at Michael's, a slice of tree trunk about an 1" thick and will drill a hole in it to insert the tree bark so that it can be free standing and be able to look all around it just as I've envisioned. It always amazes me when a thought hits me and all the pieces fall into place. Now, I don't just see this project as separate ornaments but an entire sculpture. I also think that as I continue to add the finished letters onto the tree I will get some other ideas to add just a bit more sparkle to it to complete the entire piece. Perhaps some letters lying on the base as if it was that time of alphabet year to refresh it's growth...or something like that. I'm inspired to continue on it's journey.
My life is full and complicated as it is...now I'm blogging, creating new websites, selling my art online and who knows what's next. I started a store on Etsy and I'm going a bit crazy with everything that has to done, read, technology learned, download stuff, etc., etc., etc. and this is on top of earning a living at doing a form of art and then having to create more art to sell. Tomorrow is my 62nd birthday and gotta tell you, I'm tired just thinking about all the things I have to do. What happened to life getting easier the older you get? You'd never know it by my life. Well, like they say, take it one day at a time. I decided to take out lots of stuff I've already created over the past years and update them and sell them. It will be so much better if someone loved and had to have something that has been sitting in my box of things that I don't know where to put than for it to go unnoticed and tucked away. I hope that I can make someone happy when they see something I've created and they know they can have it for their own. Now, that will make my day!
It was early February and I wanted to create a piece as a Valentine. My intention was to make several and give them as gifts but I was too busy doing the Academy Award Nomination Certificates and name badges for the AMPAS luncheon so I only got to do one. In my opinion, it came out rather well. However, I've decided to sell the piece in my Etsy shop. It is one of those things that when it sells I will be sad to see it go with hopes that it goes to a good home. If it doesn't, than I will add it to my many creations and save it to be past down to my granddaughter. When I create a piece I feel very attached to it and it's hard to let it go. I wonder if I'm being selfish or is that a normal feeling. Oh well, I guess I'll just have to create another one.
I'm very excited about my new charm bracelet project that I hope is worthy of sales. I signed up for an Etsy.com account and will be offering my charm bracelets for sale there. My friend, Lisa and I purchased these large ball chain bracelets at our rubber stamp convention. We go as volunteers to do personalized book marks for the Society for Calligraphy then afterwards we get to shop around. Being a former jewelry person, I have plenty of jewelry findings, beads, charms and what nots so I figured it would be a great way to put these otherwise neglected supplies to good use. When I wear mine the comments are very positive and people want to know where they can get one...well now they can. Hope you like what you see....
Yesterday, I drove down to Kellogg Poly Pomona to visit with my calligraphy friends who were taking classes at our (Society for Calligraphy) mini conference. I couldn't spare the time to go myself for the 4 days but visit I could. I so lucky to be part of an artist community that is so active and wonderful not to mention the great friends I've made over the years. I didn't visit and chat with everyone for long because there was just too much for me to see...lots of recent work exhibited and for sale. Work for auction and gifts to give away. Paper and Ink, one of our main sources of supplies was set up with lots of new gizmos to buy. Demonstrations of new products and some old as well for the new calligraphers on the block. I felt like a kid in a candy store. I spent lots of money, had fun spending it and brought home lots of goodies. I also took pictures...I visited each class and took photos of the work in progress and to see what I was missing. The Society gives lots of mini weekend classes throughout the year and I plan to take several. One of the items for sale was a small box of alphabet cards that was reproduced as a fund raiser. Each letter was created and submitted by different calligraphers. Some of us did more than one. I volunteered to do "W and L". It was great to see all the different ways the artists rendered their chosen letters. On the drive home I thought about how inspired everyone was by what they were learning and/or teaching and how excited I was just by seeing everyone's enthusiasm. That was my fix for the week. I'm inspired to create.
Today is a day to send notes of love so indeed I will. I hope this Valentine's Day is indeed filled with love and peace of mind. My family and friends will be in my thoughts today and I will send you all my love.
This piece is called "Romantic". I really enjoyed working on it and it will be the first among several that I'm planning.
The first one I did was a gift for my friend Xandra for her birthday. Her name had 12 letters in it so it divided up nicely. Each small square had a letter on it and spelled out her name making it very personal. So then I thought to start doing smaller pieces using words instead. Staring at me was a tear out from a magazine with the word Romantic stacked 2 times so I decided very quickly to use that as my muse. I already had some frames from other projects I've done with art dolls that I temporarily stopped creating so I decided to make use of them. I also had a stack of paste paper that I was saving to use on some unforeseen creation and now having all the ingredients off I went to start playing with it.
First I tore the paste paper into 2" squares as I wanted the natural edge look and made sure that they would fit in the frame once laid out. I also wanted to make sure I had enough space around each one so I could have some play room to extend and hang things. I decided on the individual letters I would use and placed them on each square. Then I went to play with the layout, my absolutely favorite thing to do. After each square was designed and completely glued, stapled or punched to secure placement, I cut out from black foam core smaller squares to place in the back for attachment. I wanted each decorated square to vary in depth so I alternated the attachment pieces (the foam core) behind by first stacking 2 together than 1 achieving movement. To finalize the attachment of each square I used glue. Since the word romantic has 8 letters I used the last square for the double word Romantic. All in all, I am very pleased with the way it all turned out. My next piece with be "abundance" and am looking for the my muse to start it.
I'm also working on an alphabet tree however, that's on going since each ornament is one letter and there are after all 26 letters in the alphabet.
Today is very frustrating for me. I have an entire day to play with my projects but I want to do more computer stuff and because I'm not very computer literate everything new to me is hard work and mind challenging. So why do I frustrate myself? At this point in my life I really need to be thinking differently about attracting more creative inspiration into my life. I also have products I'd love to be selling and earning some different kind of income. Calligraphy has supported me very nicely for the past 28 years but I have RA and my hands are starting to become worrisome. I'm sure I'll be fine but to be on the safe side and to push myself I need to learn more about the worldwide web. It is the future way to do business and the future is here now. So, I guess I'll go back to trying to figure out just how ignorant I am.
Yesterday, I spent most of the morning visiting doctors, labs, imaging, being poked, prodded, pulled and squeezed and needed a pick me up. Low and behold, in my purse, I found 2 $10.00 off coupons for a very favorite shoe haunt in my neighborhood. So off I went quickly forgetting the past several hours. Now, just because I have a shoe fetish does not mean I get out of control when it comes to buying shoes. I am much better than ever I was with only about 18 pair of shoes in my closet compared to when I was in my 20's, 30's and 40's. At almost 62 in a few weeks, working at home and no night life to speak of, I can't justify having the amount of shoes I used to have. Now I buy cozy, comfortable shoes I can wear all the time with my funky wardrobe of casual clothes. So, while looking around not sure even if I'll buy anything, I came across these little black slip ons that had a plain black ribbon tie in the eyelets. Immediately I thought, being the type that loves to alter things, of how cute they would be with several different strips of dotted fabric instead of the ribbon. Needless to say, I purchased them at a whopping 16.99 plus tax with the $20 off, quickly took them home, pulled out the black ribbon and inserted the fabric. I just love it when a little idea turns out to be my now favorite pair of shoes.
This is my first blog entry and even after reading "Artful Blogging" I'm still not sure what I'm doing but I won't let that stop me. So here it goes folks...
Yesterday, having little in the way of paying work, I spent the afternoon at a friends house playing with a soldering iron. My friend, Xandra, has done some successful soldering and although I've tried to solder before have not been successful. Thinking, if I watched and took some instruction from her, I'd get something created that could possibly further my skills it would definitely be a promising day indeed. NOT! How frustrating that tool and little ball of solder can be. After carefully wrapping a scrabble tile with the copper tape and soldering all around it, I did manage after numerous attempts to solder a jump ring onto it, however, it is entirely off center and a bit wrongly angled. I kept trying but my dreams of things I could create "when" I learn how to solder has made me rethink what and what I am not good at.
Now, I am an artist to the core. I have a successful calligraphy business for the past 27 plus years, made books, art dolls, original creations that people actually pay for, create wonderful altered books and one of a kind pieces, dabbled in jewelry, anthing new that happens on the art scene, etc. but that darn little tool and tiny ball of solder has me stumped. My son told me that it's a "guy thing" and that he's not surprised that I can't do it. I was at first trying to prove him wrong, however, I'm wondering if he knows something I don't. I know there are thousands of female jewelry artists out there that can wip that tool into shape and make it do incredible things. I'm just wondering "is it me or are some women just incapable of soldering".
In any case, I think I'll stick to what I know and be done with it.
I'm so grateful to be able to share my art with others. I'm mixed media and love doing lots of different mediums. My main stay is calligraphy of course and most of my art has words in them, hence "The Word is ART". Hope you like what you see and come back often.
Have a blessed day. Renee
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I've been a professional calligrapher and designer for over 35 years and have had extraordinary experiences. I am proud to say that my clients are from all walks of life and a handful of celebrities that are faithful to my work. I've been blessed to be able to earn my living by doing what I truly love to do. I will always remain grateful and proud.
Come visit to see some of the calligraphy work that I do and ...