Monday, December 31, 2012

Three Candles


Talk of a new year has always brought mixed feelings for me.  There have been times when I looked forward to the new year as an opportunity for new beginnings and new directions.  And there have been times when I was happy to see the previous year end as I hoped that the coming year would not be like it's predecessor.  And then, I have to admit that there have been times when I just didn't see what all the hullabaloo was about.  It was just another day just like the 50 before it.   Cynical, I know....   sorry.   

What I would like to do this year is to offer 3 candles.  One for the last year.  It has had some good, some celebration, some happiness.  But it has also had its share of tears, worry, and heaviness.  I think the blue candle that isn't standing quite straight would be good for the last year.  

And other candle for the coming year.  -the white tall one, I think.  This year hasn't even come and yet it is already filling with hope and uncertainty at the same time as there are questions that only time can answer.    Oh patience, how you allude me!

And the third candle, the wider one, for the stability of life that says this is truly just another day, another opportunity to step one foot in front of the other.  January 1 is another opportunity to awaken and give our best to the day - just as December 31 was and just as January 2 will be.  Every day is a chance to begin again, a chance to find hope, a chance to be better, kinder, more generous people.   

So Happy New Year to you.  And Happy Day.




Wind and Honey Creations

Friday, December 28, 2012

The Road Ahead

Snowy Road 

Where is the road taking you in 2013?  Do you have a plan?  Will you walk into it intentionally or with exploration as you look to see what you will discover?

 
Wind and Honey Creations

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Merry Christmas


I wish for you a blessed Christmas. 
May you find joy in the delights of life and in those you love. 
And may you discover ways to share that joy with someone in need. 

Christmas Collage


Wind and Honey Creations

Sunday, December 16, 2012

A Little Quiet Christmas

nativity

With all the news about the precious babies who are now angels before their time, I find myself at
a loss for words.  So I will share with you today a bit more of the images from my home Christmas.  Both of my kids will be home this year.  It has not been that way for a few years.  They will both be bringing their "someone special" with them.  I have been so excited.  But now, I simply feel very blessed and humbled at the privilege.


These lamps were given to me by an older friend who was simplifying her stash of belongings.
I showed you the swan before but I didn't tell you it came from the Dollar Tree!!!



This snowman was given to me a few years back by a very young art student of mine.



I didn't paint this cute snowman jar.  It is hand painted but by someone else.  I rescued it from the thrift store.



 
Wind and Honey Creations

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

A Little Bit of Christmas

I thought I would share a little bit of the touches of Christmas at my house.  My decor is more on the simple side compared to so many beautiful blogs that have lovely displays on the mantle and other homey spots.  I love that style.  I simply don't have time to make it happen.  So we go for a more simple touch and hope that it is still beautiful.


  Cup-&-Star

I purchased this cup and saucer at an estate sale.  And the vintage ornament is from my childhood.  Actually, I don't know how old it is, perhaps older than me.  I don't even remember where the star came from.  It was not new.  I'm sure it came from a thrift store.  It just seemed a shame for the cups to be empty.  So each one got an ornament or two.

snow-S&P 

I purchased these salt and pepper shakers the first Christmas I was married.  Oh!  How I hate saying they are now considered vintage!  When my daughter was very young, she used to play with them all month.  They would go on adventures around the house, especially on the branches of the Christmas tree. 
 
Santa bunny 

I found this cast stone bunny at a thrift store a few years ago.  I just fell in love with his goofy expression.  But he was painted horribly and someone had hot glued cotton all over his beard and the white parts of his hat and coat.  Then there was spanish moss hot glued to the wreath and basket.  Ugh!  It took a long time to get him cleaned up.  Then I repainted him.  Now, he is one of my favorites.
 
  Christmas-bunny-in-chair 

This chair came from the estate sale where I got the cups and saucers.  I believe it is handmade.  And the bunny is actually a tree ornament.  I got him at a garage sale several years ago.  I have never seen another like him.  I believe he is papier mache.  But, actually, I'm not sure.  

So, there is a little walk through of some of my favorite things.  I'll show you a little more later.

 








Wind and Honey Creations

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Friday, November 23, 2012

Drawing Fun for the Holidays


You are cordially invited to come to Creative Pencils and join The Holiday Designs workshop.  It is a set of 3 colored pencil projects.  We will draw a set of candy canes with a ribbon, a candle, with evergreen, and a vintage stocking.  In each of these designs I will teach you strong shading skills creating depth and beauty in your drawings.  

In the candle project I will demonstrate using the Zest-It blending solution to create the layered look of the colors.  (If you do not have Zest-It, you can blend the candle just like the other 2 projects.)

Once you have learned how to draw these designs you can mix them to create new designs that are uniquely yours.  

You can use these designs to decorate cards, gift tags, ornaments, packages and much more.


 Its fun and even a beginner can accomplish these projects.  Get out your pencils and let's get started.  

You can purchase this workshop on the home page of Creative Pencils




Wind and Honey Creations

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Happy Day of Thanks


I have several friends that have been posting a gratitude list daily on Facebook.  I love that.  I love the idea of perpetually finding something new to be thankful for.  I love the thought of being intentionally thankful.  I wish I had done that too.  But I was busy and, at least mentally, in a whirlwind.  So I didn't do it.

I'd like to make a small list here.  I'll keep it short for your sake.  : )
 

I am thankful:   
  1. I have a daughter with whom I can still laugh and have fun.
  2. I have a son who has grown to be a man I respect.
  3. I have a husband who loves me still even though the years have begun to show on me. 
  4. I have the privilege to live the life of an artist with creativity all around me.
  5. for my local students and my online students from all over the world.  What fun they are to know!
  6. for the honor to have rescued my sweet furry friends and to enjoy their company daily in my studio.
  7. for my faith.  It is what sustains and energizes me.
  8. for technology.  Although it exasperates me, I could not accomplish my business without it.
  9. for the many many miraculous things I have seen develop in those I love in the last year.
  10. for the perpetual and amazing patience of my God.
And thank you, my dear blog friends, for joining me here from time to time.  May your holiday time be blest with delight, gratitude, and grace.




Wind and Honey Creations

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Oh The Things You Could Draw

You know how I love pumpkins.   This one is by Sandy Simpson



Shell from Pencils 201 by Justine Hennessy
Sometimes I wish I had a camera pointed at my face when I open the emails I get from my students.  Occasionally they find some of the exercises to be particularly challenging, and I feel their struggle.  But when it finally clicks and they begin to make real progress, I celebrate with them and the drawings they send to me bring big smiles to my face.

I have to brag on them sometimes because they are just so very good.  I love that they each have their own style and their own interest for drawing subjects.  I love that they are each finding their own unique creativity.

Here are some pieces done recently by a few of my students at Creative Pencils.  Now, when you look at these and are impressed - and of course, you will be impressed - remember that these students started out as beginners.  This is not the level at which they came into class.

Now, doesn't that bring a smile to your face? ....................
Yes, I thought so.....

"Chloe" by Sandra Petersen



Wind and Honey Creations

Monday, November 12, 2012

Zest-It Has Come to the USA


After much diligent work to understand and conquer all issues related to importing from the UK, Vicki Byers of And Bear Makes 3, is now a US distributor for Zest-It.  Zest-It is a non toxic blending medium for colored pencils.  

I have personally not previously used a solvent for my colored pencil work because they tend to be fairly toxic substances.  But Zest-It is environmentally and health friendly.  (Well, don't drink it...)  I love how it works and enjoy using it to create a base undercoat to my colored pencil work.  It sure is easier on the hands than hand blending all of that with a blending pencil!  


I posted a review and test of Zest-It a year ago on my blog.  Here is the link to that post if you want to see the results.  Vicki is currently the one and only North American distributor of Zest-It.  When I ordered my Zest-It from the UK, my shipping was as much as my order.  So I am thrilled that Vicki has taken this task on.  You can reach Vicki online here or if you would like to speak with her on the phone, you can find that information here.

You can get a nice bottle for refilling and also a container with a sponge.  This container is nice because it is more stable.  Several of my students and I have all spilled our bottle a bit.  So, we were glad to get the container with the sponge making it nearly impossible to spill.  




Wind and Honey Creations

Thursday, November 8, 2012

We Are All Out Of Excuses!


The following video is of a man born without eyes and yet he paints.  Oh, he paints abstract, you are probably thinking.  No!  Esref Armagan paints with a great deal of detail and even accurate perspective.   This self taught artist from Turkey paints with his fingertips.  His choices for colors that he has never seen are incredible.  Mr Armagan begins by etching out a drawing and then applies oil paints, one color at a time.   He says that he feels "inside" his paintings while he works.   He even paints landscapes that he has never seen.  You can see some of his art here.

I am truly amazed by this man and humbled at the silly things I can find as excuses for not being more productive.   I hope you enjoy this video and are inspired as well.






Wind and Honey Creations


Friday, November 2, 2012

A Day for Rest


Its a lovely Fall day at my house - sunshine, a breeze, and moderate temperatures.

 I'm taking some much needed time off for rest.  Then will be back into busy mode tomorrow as I go to teach a marathon 5 hour drawing class.  But my students are great so it should be an enjoyable afternoon.

I hope you are enjoying your day wherever you are and whatever it is filled with. 

I really liked the way this photo turned out and even the unusual dimensions.  I took the original at Whole Foods Market.   I cropped it from a larger one and then played with it in photoshop to get the dreamy feel.


 


Wind and Honey Creations


Saturday, October 27, 2012

A Love Affair with Pumpkins

 
I love pumpkins!   I'm not sure what it is about them that has captured my heart.  But I've loved them for as long as I can remember.  Perhaps it is their shape.  They are so fun to draw and color.  The ripples in their form provide ample opportunities for creative shading and highlighting.  And yet they are not difficult to draw.  The natural variations in their shape gives lots of grace for those struggling with perfection when outlining their form.  

a 

 Perhaps it is the season they come in.  I love Autumn with its crisp new air.  I love the colors of the leaves changing.  Autumn provides a sense of nesting as we get out the quilts and prepare to snuggle in for the winter.   Autumn reminds me of the fun memories of football season when I was in High School band.  And although I'm not much of a sports fan, those were very important days that made a huge impact on my life.


Maybe I love pumpkins because I love its pie.  I love pumpkin pie so much that when I was growing up, I used to ask for it in lieu of a birthday cake.  And I married a man that loves it equally as much.   Just give me a good pumpkin pie and I'm a happy girl.  

We had a pumpkin vine grow up volunteer in our yard one year.  That was fun.  It was as if the seeds knew, just like those stray kittens know, that this was a house where they would be loved and well cared for.   The vine grew large and beautiful with all its twisty curls.  I think, perhaps, I will plant a pumpkin vine next year.  Or maybe 2 or 3. 


I can tell you this, though.  My love for pumpkins is definitely not because of their color.  I'm not really fond of orange.  Shhhh, don't tell my OSU Cowboy friends.  I will be the first to shout "Orange Power" at those games.   But only out of loyalty, not out of a love for orange.    

So I love my pumpkins, color or not.  And even though the reason is a mystery, I will enjoy them just the same.  Now, pass another piece of that pumpkin pie, please.




Wind and Honey Creations

Monday, September 17, 2012

A Tiny Little Artbar

 
A few months ago Derwent sent me a set of their new Artbar. They only sent me the set of 12 which was such a teaser!  Of course I was sure I needed more.  I was very busy at the time they arrived and I was not able to find time to play with them.  I watched the demonstration videos and found them intriguing but not really in line with the art I usually produce.  I did find some interesting uses for them in my art journal pages.  But not much else.  I did purchase the set of 24, though.  Because even in the art journal backgrounds, I was pretty sure I needed those soft pastels in the set of 24.  
I was happily surprised when the set of 24 arrived and I discovered that there were only a very few duplicates from the set of 12 I already had.  And they were basics like black and browns - colors you will use up more quickly anyway. 

Then recently, in the Tiny Masterpieces Studio Group on my Creative Pencils site, we were discussing the fact that it had been a while since any of us had worked on any artist trading cards.  So, on a whim, I pulled out a tiny Strathmore canvas precut to just the right size for an ATC, and I opened up my newest set of Artbar.  

The ATC nest full of eggs with wind blown feathers that you see above is the result.  I used a tiny paintbrush and the scraper tool to help the process.  I loved doing this.  In fact I was almost late for my afternoon class because I found it difficult to stop.  I loved the soft gentle look I was able to create quite easily with them and I delighted in the way I was able to embellish it with the scraper tool. 

The Artbar are compact and, based on this project, I believe they will last a long time.  I predict I will use them a lot.  I love that I could take them along with me so easily should I choose to.  Perhaps that will be a way to keep me from being late for class.  I'm looking forward to trying them on a number of surfaces.  I'll share them with you here when I do.





Wind and Honey Creations

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Its a New Day at Creative Pencils


My dear blogging friends, I apologize for my very long absence.  Life has been full and days have run into weeks.  But I have an exciting announcement that does explain some of my time in the last weeks.  

 


Colored Pencils 101
Pencils 301
Creative Pencils is the site where I offer lessons in pencil art.  In the last year it has been a subscription site with a monthly lesson plan.  But it is a new day at Creative Pencils!  It is now filled with workshops so you may choose what you want to learn.  You can even work on more than one workshop at a time, if you like.  The foundational lessons in basic graphite pencil (Pencils 101, 201, & 301) and colored pencils (101 & the upcoming 201) will remain open for students at all times.   And I will always be available to help and critique your work in those lessons.  I love watching the students blossom and grow as they work through those exercises.

Cat Portraits in Graphite
The other more specialized workshops like cat portraits or the upcoming dog portraits, etc. will be offered for a limited time.   And I am available for every workshop for questions, critique, and even just conversation.                                      You can become a member of Creative Pencils simply by enrolling in a workshop of any size and then signing up.  You may remain a member even when you are in between workshops.   
Art Journaling with Pencils Studio Group
We have Studio Groups where all members may share photos of their work and join in conversations about subjects they enjoy like art journals, especially those created with artist pencils.  Artist Trading Cards is another studio group and there are others including one discussing using your drawings in your mixed media collage work.                                                                                                              
 We are having a lot of fun at Creative Pencils!  Come and join in on the fun. 
 Of course you can do it!  That's what the lessons are for, to teach you.    Pop on over and see our new look!


***Creative Pencils has moved to Creative Workshops.  Come by and see***



Wind and Honey Creations

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