Saturday, December 31, 2011

Bringing in the New

What can I say about 2011?  Was it a good year?  In many ways it was...at least eventually I hope to only see it that way.

I got to do many fun things, experience some goals for myself, start a long awaited relationship over with my son, watch my grandkids grow like weeds into well adjusted, healthy young kids, learn new art techniques which brought my personal creativity to a new level and to recognize most of my blessings, see old friends, travel a little and appreciate who I am.

I experienced health challenges along the way which will hopefully make me a healthier and stronger person who will live longer as I have lots of things I still want to achieve.  It was pretty scary going thru it all but I'm blessed to now see the light at the end of the tunnel as they say.

Reflecting back now, I realize a lot of things about this year that have made me a better person, mother, grand mother, friend, woman, partner and artist.  I also recognize now that God has a plan and I'm not in control.  But, if I listen very carefully I'll get to where I'm suppose to be in God's plan and in God's time without many bumps in the road along the way.

There are some words that will be in my vocabulary on a regular basis this new year...
1-Gratitude always number 1
2-Humility
3-Acceptence
4-Respect
5-Appreciation
6-Blessings
7-Wonder
8-Abundance
9-Obedience
10-Recognize God's presence in my life

I'll be 66 in less than 2 months and I think it's about time I have finally come into my own.  So here's to the old...2011 and I welcome the new...2012.  I intend to make 2012 my most brilliantly successful year yet.

Here's some things I created throughout 2011

Mixed media handmade jewelry
Mixed media handmade jewelry

"I Have Everything I Need" mixed media painting on canvas SOLD
Unframed (better for photos) shadow box mosaic collage "Gratitude" SOLD
"With all my Heart" small mixed media in shadow box frame
"serenity" Totally handmade with acrylic shield
Mixed media cuff bracelet SOLD
"Make it Natures Way" mosaic collage in shadow box frame
"Mixed media neckless SOLD
"Look Within" mixed media on canvas SOLD
"Home Sweet Home" Hanging Fabric collage quilt
"I'm Still Learning" SOLD
"Inspired" SOLD
"Fruits of Life" mixed media painting on canvas SOLD
"Anticipation" mixed media on canvas SOLD
"Endless Tomorrows" Mixed media on canvas
Shadow box mosaic collage SOLD
"New Beginnings" acrylic painting on canvas
A collage book that went into a shadow box frame SOLD
Living Fearlessly, a mixed media painting on canvas
Oh my, and this is just a handful!  There are so many more things I could post but I won't.  I'm finding it so interesting to see how much work I've created just this year.  I'm astounded!  I guess I just don't realize how much I do accomplish.  This is, of course, a blessing to know as I don't give myself enough credit most of the time.  I will now I'm sure....I'm feeling kind of proud actually.  I hope I can remember this when I start to doubt myself.

Well, this takes me to the last post of 2011.  I had many followers before I lost my original blog and only a few now so I'll just send my wishes out to old and new friends if only by spirit.
May the New Year of 2012 bring you many blessings both for you and your family, perfect health and many joyous moments to reflect on.  Wishing you Peace of Mind, Lots of Inspiration and Much Love throughout and always.  God Bless You!
Renee

Friday, December 16, 2011

Commission Work

A few years ago a lovely women purchased a mosaic collage entitled "Gratitude" from Ten Women Venice.  She saved my contact information and commissioned me to do 8 mosaic collages to give as gifts to each of her family members this Christmas.
She chose the word "Powerful" as the theme.  Each letter had a specific meaning and was to be used in all 8 shadow boxes.
P - Prayerful
O - Obedient
W - Worthy
E- Eternal
R - Reverent
F - Forthright
U - Understanding
L - Loving

Here's what I created for her......

Powerful 8 unframed
Powerful 7 unframed
Powerful 6 unframed
Powerful 5 unframed
Powerful 4 unframed
Powerful 3 unframed
Powerful 2 unframed
Powerful 1 framed
A grouping of 4 framed 
It was quite challenging to create 8 very different views of the same word and overall theme going to the same person.  Sometimes I surprise myself.
As far as I know, all arrived safely and my client was happy with what I created for her.


Monday, December 5, 2011

Since my hysterectomy

Just needing to express my gratitude for finally being on the mend today.  It has been a very challenging time for me health-wise.

Since my last post about the challenges I was dealing with after my hysterectomy, I have since had 2 more surgeries.  I knew I wasn't right and something was amiss inside of me because I just didn't feel quite right.

I had a calligraphy workshop the weekend of Nov. 19-20th that I was looking forward to for a long time.  Saturday all went well but Sunday was another story.  Right after lunch I went to relieve myself and because my bladder was still numb from the hysterectomy I was straining to urinate.  I felt a pop and a pain shot up into my gut that took my breathe away.  I came out and mentioned what I was experiencing to a friend and then I felt the strangest thing. As I was sitting with my legs stretched out and trying to let the pain pass, something started to throb between my legs.  It was a weird feeling so I went back to the restroom to check it out.  What happened next changed my outlook on life.  As I explored what was pulsing, I reached down and literally held my intestines in my hands which had fallen out of my vagina.  Within the next 20 minutes I was on a gurney, pushed into an ambulance and rushed to UCLA Medical Hospital where they performed emergency surgery to put things back where they belonged. 

What I was told was that my stitches from the hysterectomy didn't hold up and 2 feet of intestines fell through my vagina which is what was in my hands.  Bizarre is not quite the word that would describe what I was feeling during this ordeal.  Unfortunately, the next day, the doctor who did the emergency surgery felt that the section of intestines that had escaped did not get enough blood and oxygen while exposed and he needed to go back in to remove that section.  Hence...the third and hopefully final surgery.

I'm post op a little over 2 weeks now and finally seeing the light at the end.  It's been an horrendous ordeal with everything that went on in the hospital and the strangeness of the experience, I can only say how grateful I am to be writing this post, sitting upright with no tubes up my nose and down my throat, needles in my arms or catheter, sleeping in my own bed and surrounded by my pets, art and family.  I am looking forward to a full recovery and a prosperous, peaceful, happy and healthy 2012.

I can let it go now....I hope.

The Grand Opening Celebration

Looking in at our Grand Opening Celebration

Because I wasn't up for hanging out the entire evening, I got to our Grand Opening Celebration when it began around 5:00 p.m. Friday evening.  It was bustling all up and down Montana Avenue and the gallery was filled with people by the time I left at 5:45.  From what I heard, it was a very successful event.

We received so many compliments and happy wishes welcoming us to the neighborhood and the proof was all the sales.  We hope we made lots of new return customers. 

My jewelry is doing very well and it is what is selling...not my art, unfortunately.  I guess I'm happy at least something is selling.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Ten Women On Montana Open For Business

Ten Women on Montana opened our doors this week  for business.  Our new home feels fresh, classy, organized and looks like a wonderful gallery with fabulous art for sale.  Here's a look at our opening window, the over all display of  inside the gallery and of course, my space and new jewelry items I have for sale.

First window display on Montana
Looking into the gallery from the front door
Looking out from the counter area
Some of my art for window display
My mixed media art in my new space
"And this too shall pass" necklace
"Holiday Treat" necklace made with old vintage rhinestone pin
"Charmed I'm Sure" necklace
"Hidden Meaning" necklace
A Stone's Throw" necklace
"Bejeweled" necklace
"Amore" necklace


 I have so much more that I have created, in the midst of creating and have ideas for creating.  I'm so blessed and excited to be in our new home and feel confident we are exactly where we are suppose to be.

In gratitude...always.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Ten Women Venice has a new home

After 2 months since we vacated Abbot Kinney, Ten Women Venice Gallery has found a new home and will be opening tomorrow for the first time in it's new location.  We also have a new name..."Ten Women Venice on Montana".   We are now on Montana in Santa Monica.

This was taken at the beginning of setting up our spaces 

For the past month, all the artist members were busy painting, reconstructing, re-doing floors, buying new shelves and lights handling whatever had to be done to get us up and running with enough time for the holiday selling.  We are just about ready to open our doors and consider ourselves ready for business once again.

 We have a fresh new look, some brand new artists and lots of enthusiasm to make Ten Women a fabulous art galleryThere are 20+ women artists contributing to a wonderful array of art for almost everyones' taste.

I believe I was one of the first artist to get my shelves up, jewelry places and art on the walls. Here's a look....
My space is 36" wide from floor to ceiling
The bottom half is all jewelry
Just a sampling of what's new in my art
Some fun necklaces


The gallery is truly looking amazing and I'm very excited to be part of it and the new location.  More photos tomorrow...

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Life is Changing

Life has been changing for me at a rapid pace for the past few months which is not so unusual, however, I'm tired.  So much is continually happening that it's hard to just stop and take a breath and take it all in.  I seriously need to slow down and life just keeps bringing me more challenges, hurdles and mountains to climb and new things to do and decide on.  I truly do not know how to stop it all from happening.

In the past, my MO was to run and start over thinking I will do it all differently and the outcome will be different.  I'm 65 and it has always ended up the same.  I am truly bewildered as to how to not end up in the same place once again.  I am down right tired...and not just because I had surgery only 4 weeks ago.  I just can't seem to put it all together and realize that I am not 40+, or even 50+.  I am 65 and I want to slow down.
How do you coordinate the brain and all the powers that be to make it all happen where the progression of slowing down happens gradually, in a timely manner, where you don't have to pull the plug on anything and be able to function and take good care of yourself.  Where did I go wrong?  It's like a thoroughbred at the gate just waiting until you lift it so it can dash about and keep running forward.  What I want to know is....... where am I going?

I am at 2 galleries, doing shifts at both.  One is new and the other just starting over in a new location.  Everything is new!  Lots of energy is needed with "new".  I'm still looking for my energy to spare. I don't even have energy for myself to heal let alone "spare".  Yet, being in these galleries is what I want.  I'm confused and life is constantly confusing me.  I have no words right now......

There's an old Musical called "Stop the World, I Want to Get Off".  It kind of feels like that at times.  And yet, there's the other side that has to be careful of my words, thoughts and actions.  Oh fuck!  I need a break!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

No News Isn't Necessarily Good News

It's been so long since I posted on my art blog I may have forgotten how it all works. It's been since July, August, whenever I returned from Phoenix that things just changed and I don't really know why. So much has happened in these few months that would be just too much to go into so I think what I'll do is slowly work backwards.

Today, I am 6 days post-op from my hysterectomy. Precautionary they said, pre-cancer they said, everything has to come out they said. Okay, take the damn things out!

It was done robotic laproscopically where they use robot hands to do the dirty work. Imagine that! And, they sent me home as soon as they could get me off the table. Big mistake my friend! The next day I was in the ER with such severe chest pains I wanted to die.

When they do laproscopic surgery, they fill you with air to lift everything out of the way. When it's all over, it's up to you to deal with the gas. Me and the gas didn't get along so well. It's a long story, but the long and short of it is that because of my "J-pouch" (replaced colon from colon cancer) I don't expel gas like everyone else. The gas decided because it couldn't get out "that way", it was going to travel up and out the other way...NOT! It all got lodged in my chest pressing on my heart and lungs making it excruciating to breathe. It was even in my neck for heavens sake.

After numerous tests ruling out heart and lungs, it turns out the gas has to leave on it's own.......this according to the emergency room doctors. Imagine my surprise to learn that they can remove my female organs robotically but they can't give you anything for f..king gas. Getting out of the ER was another story for another post. All I can say to that is, if you don't have to go there, don't.

Finally home, my son Greg stopped by and immediately went to get me Zantac. Literally saved the day. A little Zantac and Alka Seltzer and I was on my way to a better day.

Tomorrow is the removal of the catheter and 13-14 staples strategically located around my abdomen closing 6 wounds created for the robot arms and I should be as good as gold.

I hope I never have to have surgery again but if I do, it's definitely gonna be because I have no other choice. Otherwise, they will have to drag me in kicking and screaming.

On a good news note, I have lots of photos of work I've created over these months, from my trip to ArtIsYou in Petaluma and to tell you all about the new home of Ten Women Venice Gallery.

Thanks for letting me vent.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Art Unraveled


I attended Art Unraveled in Phoenix a few weeks ago and had the extreme pleasure of finally meeting some of my favorite artists that I've been following for a long time. In the picture which was taken at dinner one night in Scottsdale, is left to right, Diana Frey, JoAnna Pierotti, Pat (sorry, no last name), me, Serena Barton, Pam Carriker and Diane Cook. Oh my God...I'm such a groupie! I loved being around the "big guys"! It was a memorable evening for me.

So, here's how it happened....
Over the AU Yahoo group, a gal listed classes for sale at a discount because she could no longer attend. There were 2 classes that, if I had decided to attend in the first place, would have chosen so I gave it some thought. It was going to be a last minute decision and only a few days so why not, right?

The next day, out of the blue, I got a call from my online friend, JoAnna Pierotti. Jo wanted to know if I was taking any classes at AU and I told her my thoughts. She graciously invited me to stay with her which would save me the cost of the hotel...hummmmm! Okay, then she said she was taking Susan Lenart Kazmer class, one of the classes I wanted to take, and that was the deciding factor for me. I quickly purchased the 2 classes, made my plans and off I went in only about 10 days. Fast and furious, whoopie!

I had such a good time getting to know Jo and her husband, Ron. Seeing Jo's studio was a major high light for me. I love her art and will be taking her class at ARTisYou in Petaluma next month.
I couldn't stop looking at her wonderful collection of "stuff" and her creations, OMG! Just being around the energy in there was amazing for me. I'm also a voyeur of art studios, lol.

The classes were fabulous. I took Diana Frey's "Briar Rose" class where I learned to have a deep appreciation for what she does and her soldering skills. Please visit her blog because her work is amazing and she dresses fabulously as well. I did not finish my piece as I just found the soldering such a challenge that it took up most of the day, oy vey!

This was the second class I took from Susan Lenart Kazmer. I love her work, her art and the way she teaches. I learned so much from her and am taking my jewelry to the next level because of her.

I haven't had much time to download my photos and get organized since I've returned from Phoenix. I left and returned to non stop calligraphy work and everything else that is going on in my life that I will have to post another time to show photos and tell all about the new gallery I'm in called Very Venice on Abbot Kinney in Venice and what is going on with Ten Women Gallery. All for next time...
Have a beautiful weekend!


Monday, August 1, 2011

Lost My Domain Name

I'm starting over...

I'm so overwhelmed right now that I can't even take in all that I have to do to be up and running again. I'm leaving for Phoenix tomorrow morning for Art Unraveled and I'm excited about that but I did a stupid, stupid thing because of money. I let my domain name expire because of laziness, thinking lack and being irresponsible that it would be okay to over take my better judgement. I want to believe that everything happens for a good reason and this too shall pass....
BUT...I just can't seem to wrap my brain around what I need to do to start over. It took me 3 years to develop a following and now I have none.

Okay folks, when i return to my already stressful agenda, I will take responsibility and start everything from scratch.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Still Going With TIexture

"If Not Now, When?"

The last touch of texture...the feather.

Top portion

I added a handmade shadow box frame for this piece "A New Day" created from foam core board, plaster gauze and joint compound.  Construction of frame learned from Julie Haymaker Thompson

Detail shot of frame
I'm still hot and heavy creating with textures.  I keep going back to the videos of the online classes I signed up for and taking advantage of my continuing interest, I'm doing all the steps the lessons are providing.  There are so many techniques between the two workshops, "The Plaster Studio" and "Texture Town", that I will probably be busy creating with texture for quite awhile.  So many possibilities, I need little outside inspiration right now.  It's been wonderful!