Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Managing the ART of the POSSIBLE

You know many of the top designers over the years have NOT be able to draw-or found drawing boring-they might slam off a little sketch but the rest is a visionary process that takes place between their heads and hands.

I have always considered myself a mediocre artist but a fairly good designer-I certainly understand colours and textures,form and how shapes work in space-that's why I did costumes design for many years-you paint with light colour and shape.

I am always amazed by someone who can do photo realistic drawings and paintings-its a special gift-while impressive it doesn't always make great art-just great renderings of a specific subject.

The hardest thing for each creative person to remember is that their work is extraordinary and unique-no one else in the world can do what YOU do with your hands-its impossible-even identical twins can turn out fair copies of what the other twin does but when subjected to close scrutiny differences are obvious and as unique as fingerprints.

I think by nature we who art are very sensitive and easily hurt or slighted, seems to come with the territory.

Few people do not seek the approval of family and especially parents-the worst audience often to receive that approval.

I have spoken and written at length about how much I learned from teaching decorative painting-how damaged people are, how egos have been crushed and how many people, women especially, are physically and verbally abused-it's a tragedy.

We often learn very early where we stand in life (and in the family structure) by being labeled-he's the smart one, she's the artist, he's the neat one, she's the cook etc ad nauseum.

I can't begin to impart to you the sadness I have felt for people over the years when I complimented them on their work and was met with, "Well I'm not a real artist, my SISTER (Mother, aunt, uncle etc) was the real artist.

At the same time I have felt it necessary to give people a gentle smack upside the head and remind them that by virtue of creating art one is a real artist and the whining and crying is self defeating, wastes time and in the end who cares or notices that we feel inferior? Pretty much no one.

People will give us a pat on the back here and there or commiserate with us over our lack of perceived abilities but they get bored with it and eventually there we are, all by ourselves with our complex feelings that we can't please anyone (which is untrue) and no one cares (which may be somewhat true).

I create for me----well for me and the Russians---the Russians seem to really like what I do so I pander to them a bit-I am , after all, in business to sell my art and make a bit of extra income.

If I could make money from it I would do digital collages for ever more and never touch a fine point marker again.


So your assignment for today besides having a glorious creative day-is to do something for yourself-make sure YOU like what you've done-then put it away and NEVER show it to anyone, EVER.

The reason being: If you have created something that you truly like you have pleased your toughest critic so WHY take it any further? Love it, languish in it, Treasure it and keep it for thing that no ones opinion makes any difference about other than your own.

Done and done.

Trust me I have drawers and sketchbooks and portfolios full of art that no one will ever see-its the stuff I do for me and for my enjoyment and that's all is is and all it ever needs be-I don't need anyone elses approval or validation on those items.

The more of that sort of foundation you create the thicker your skin will be and the less you will care what others think-you will learn how to choose the critiques you accept and the one's you discard and ignore.

Just my fifty cents worth...

Sunday, January 23, 2011


Tiffany challenged us this week with the Tarot deck and the wheel of FATE-I have always loved the "code words" from the Gay Divorce, "Fate is a foolish thing to take chances with" So my collage for this week went together in no time at all-hope you enjoy it and thanks to Tiffany for this weeks challenge-hope life is slowing down and smoothing out for you???
Bon Chance!!

Here are also a few ATC designs I did last Halloween-each had an actual spinner like an old fashioned game card---I had great fun with these and many other such designs last fall.

Lena Katrine- You're an ANGEL

I recieved a lovely note with an attached image from Lena Katrine(

Using one of the images from my HAT SHOPPE sheet she has created a lovely and unusual card featuring dark tones of purple and an intricate folding design-I hope you will check it out on her blog.

I am always so happy to recieve well done and unusual images from crafters, artists and designers who include my digis used in a new, frsh and exciting way!

Lena recieved a 2011 first quarter digi THANK YOU sheet for her time and effort to show my appreciation for her work.


By the way she has a great blog post which includes lots of information on how she created this card at the address above!

Thursday, January 20, 2011

COLLAGE sources

I have recieved anumber of comments about my images and collages-I just want to reiterate taht MANY of my image components come from ITKUPILLI she has an etsy shoppe full of ttreasures.

I also have a vast collection of ephemera from DOVER books-they have digitized much of their collection and the books come with a disk full of great stuff.

The reason I love ITKUPILLI's images is that she provides them in either .jpeg or .png formats-for me the PNGs are the best since they have been pretrimmed all I have to do is lasso them and slide them into my composition then alter and size them as needed.

Using Photoshop CS5 make life so easy in many ways although those who have watched me work say that they can't understand how I can keep track of all the many layers and where to pull what in and how to make the colours works etc.

I guess it's a little mpore complicated than it looks.

I was doing collage-very dark and edgy stuff when I stumbled upon ITKUPILLI-a finnish artist living in Hollywood and selling her ephemera sheets to make ends meet and I saw that edgy doesnt always have to be dark-so she inspired me and even was a source for the components of that inspiration.

She and another Artist had formed Collage obsession but when the other artist had to drop out she recruited from her fan base and we all jumped in as support team so we will be revolving over the weeks with new images and ideas every Monday!

If you have ever been interested in collage, digital collage etc hop on over and visit Itkupilli-you may find a whole new outlet for your creativity.

BTW her link is ALWAYS in my sidebar under great content-Thanks!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Carnival in YUMA

I decided since I was sitting here thinking about it to do a "pretty" collage using Mario/Luigi so here it is...when the carnival comes to town-the bordellos get busy and there are all them great souveniers to enjoy the memories...

The other composition I did specifically for this challenge is at the bottom of the Mario Luigi post below!

Sleep well...

Monday, January 17, 2011

Bits and Bobs

Here we are in the depths of WINTER and all I can think of is Spring and Halloween in the fall---Lots of new over at my ETSY shoppe I have added notecards-they are really hand done by me using photo prints on premium paper and then hand embellished with top quality rhinestones---some of the cards feature my edgy bizarre collages and others my original pen and ink drawings hand coloured with Prismacolour Pencil and then digitally augmented-I hope you will enjoy seeing them and the price includes shipping in the USA...the cards are Strathmore with deckle edges on the envelopes-acid free and archival quality-If you ask when you ORDER I will sign and date each card for you.

My digi stamps are rockin in the UK and Russia especially-I guess I have found my audience after all these years...LOL...thanks to my overseas fans as well as all my fans in the USA for keeping the shop alive and the art moving.

I BRAKE FOR STAMPS the company that has exclusive rights to my rubber stamp line has just added more than a dozen new designs-I'm sure they will be rolling out in the next weeks-I hope you'll LOVE the Halloween COSTUME bears-really cute and again exclusive to IBFS! Thanks Della for your support and confidence in me.

I continue to peruse applications from those wanting to be a part of the design team but I am seeing lots of cards and what I am looking for is alternative uses for digi stamps-maybe a part of gift wrapping, tags on boxes and other useable items-could sets make shribkadink jewelry---thats the kind of out of the box thinking I want to see.

Elaine Lienhart has provided me with a couple of new images of her wonderful work that I am sharing here-the cupid is sold either seperatly or on the armsful of LOVE stamp sheet and the outhouse is now one of two on the site both sold seperatly-Thanks Elaine for being the anchor of my Design Team and congrads on your son's recent wedding.

I am dieting---well I am food planning...I have a great deal of confidence in WEIGHT WATCHERS but it's just too expensive so I am using their principals to take off some tonnage this year (I hope).

It's so hard when you LOVE food like I do-I don't overeat I just eat the wrong things and don't get enough excercise...familiar story?

Anyway I'm trying and thank goodness I LOVE veggies and Salads-I don't do caffine or sugery drinks and fat free dressings (having checked the lable for Salt and Sugar) can be yummy-I am allergic to fish (actually anything that live in or near water)O so that limits my diet.

I used to be able to drop 30 or 40 lbs on ATKINS in a month or so-I was younger then and not nearly so wise about food and nutrition so I am going to have to give up my gall bladder here soon-not an event I am looking forward to but I'm sure I will feel better once I heal.

Hope you are all doing well-thanks for hanging in with my rambling, bizarre blog posts-feel free to comment-I always read them-I have had to limit posting to blog members because of the Chinese spammers-somehow paper crafts, art and porno don't go together for me....

Cheers all!!

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Carnivale Pazzo Challenge on Collage Obsession

I promised that I would do a post about Mario/Luigi...the fellow in the picture above.

I know very little about him-I was searching for a picture to use in an "Avante Garde" ATC swap and I came up with Mario/Luigi because I needed someone whose head I could rip off and fill their still breathing body with skulls or tea party paraphanelia---you get the idea.

Over the years he has had two heads at least twice, he has been a gay zombie and even peeked into Marie Antoinettes boudoire via a convienent window---he has never complained, he just smiles and accepts my abuses (many of which I'm sure are capitol offenses in at least 5 countries not to mention Mississippi).

I suppose with his somewhat dirty hair and dapper moustache he was quite the guy back in the early 1900s-add in that physique---well, Sandow move over.

One wonders what the real stories are behind these obscure images we use in our collage fevers-did he have a huge family? Did her perish in the Chicago fire or the San Francisco earthquake?did he travel with some circus...we may never know.

Carnivale Pazzo-CRAZY CARNIVAL in Italian can have all sorts of meanings-life is a sort of Carnivale Pazzo don't you find it?

I love creating and thinking in another language often Italian, French or German each has it's own unique palatte and set of textures for me but somehow Mario/Luigi is always an Italian...truly looking at the picture he could hail from almost any eastern European country or medeterranian island.

Just so those of you who are visiting here from the Collage Obsession website blog post on this challenge won't go crazy-here is the translation: a deolate land...Horrors!

One of my favorite opera quotes from Puccini via Manon Lescaut but on my tombstone I would like:

Vissi D'arte, Vissi d'amore

I lived for ART, I lived for LOVE

or maybe just


Have fun with Carnivale Pazzo-I am hoping for some deep dark bizarreness bit I am equally hoping to be completely suprised...CIAO!

Monday, January 10, 2011


This weeks COLLAGE OBSESSION challenge is JEWELS.

Using a lovely tinted portrait of a lady (which I'm sure has been appended with extra jewelry) I set off on my creatrive voyage.

Never one to draw back from all things sparkly I used as my muse the lavish and bejeweled Russian icons of a bygone era and with a nod to Les Folis Bergere I created Our Lady of the Jewels-a madonna of excess.

Hope you enjoy her she's wearing jewels from the Hope Diamond to earrings owned by Maried Antoinette-many of my collages draw heavily from digital ephemera sheets created by ITKUPILLI founder of Collage Obsession and one of my favorite sellers on Etsy and elsewhere.

The base image was supplied by her and many of the embellishments on this collage draw from her sheets.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

New Obsession

I will be a part of the Collage Obsession team contributing rotating challenges and participating as well-HOORAY!

Glad We were able to help keep such a great blog site going!

I think my first challenge post will be next week---Yikes!

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Still looking for DESIGN TEAM MEMBERS

I am still 5 designers short of filling my 2011 Design Team.

I am looking for designers who think outside the box, create cards and other craft projects especially 3-d items using digi stamps (mine) and who will be able to produce at leazst one project per month (beautifully photographed) to use on this blog.

My elite design team members will recieve digi sheets and other items before the are available to the public (free of charge) in exchange for their participation.

Elaine Lienhart is the anchor designer of my team.

Submit 3 jpegs of your BEST work and BEST photography of you work to my email addy


Saturday, January 1, 2011

Happy New Year

Collette never again questioned Sophies HATS!

I just want to say a quick HAPPY NEW YEAR to all of you.
I hope 2011 is full of health, happiness, interesting prospects, art and all sorts fo fun for each and every one of you!!!
I am sharing a couple of my new digital collage pieces and will be sharing what I do for Collage Obsession challenges here now in addition to my on my portfolio site.