Monday, March 30, 2015

THREE PROJECTS AND LAZY KITTENS

How was your weekend?   Mine was really great...well, I could have done without the snow on Saturday!   But, thankfully, it did not stay on the ground...only in the air.   March Madness games were quite good over the weekend.   A couple of near upsets.

I worked on the fabric landscape some more.   This is where I left it on Friday...

And this is what I have added...

What's left?   Snow around all the trees and fence posts, some cows in the barnyard, folks skating on the pond, a couple snowmen, horse and buggy and folks on the road and a few folks in other places.  I see one tree a bit askew, but nothing has been affixed to the background so it's all okay.   I really am enjoying this...

I played around some more with my 'Making Marks' collage.   This is where I left off last week...

If you remember, I wasn't especially thrilled with this phase, so I continued adding more elements, paint and a final protective coat.   And this is the finished collage.   I am going to hang this one up...

I want to add my comments to the proposition that a real artist would only use the best products.   Do the better products give a different result?   You bet they do.    But that doesn't mean that in order to be a true artist, you must use them.   The paints I used in the above collage were cheap, (59 cents a bottle) acrylic paints and I think the results were spectacular.

I tried a simple painting using the same type if paints and this is what I came up with...
A vibrant painting that I call 'Radiant Universe'.  (I'm also hanging this one up.)   

So the answer is NO, an artist does not have to only use the best products to create.  Artists can use whatever they choose to use.

Chip and Dale have definitely become accustomed to the new pets...

Linus and Lucy were chirping away about ten feet from Chip and Dale when this photo was taken.   As I said...they pay little attention to the feathery little friends.

A busy week ahead.   Trips to Manhattan, the Bronx and Queens.   Should be interesting.   Come along and enjoy the fun...

Thanks for checking things out here...
Talk to you tomorrow...

Friday, March 27, 2015

COLD WEATHER, CRAFT UPDATES AND A DISCOVERY

Ah...well...I had a great time in Time's Square on Wednesday.   Lunch with a friend and sightseeing.   However, it was a bit on the cold side and when I got off the subway in Brooklyn it was kind of raining, kind of sleeting, kind of snowing.  

At any rate, I got very, very cold on the short four block walk back to my apartment.   Even a long hot shower didn't warm me up, but it did help.   So I took some sinus meds and went to bed.   Basically, I stayed in bed until this morning with the exception of a short run to the local drug store for more sinus meds.

Thus, no posts on Wednesday nor Thursday.   But I am back today, feeling much, much better.

So unto today's work.   I tried another Marking Marks type of project to 'free' up my creative juices. I began with a large prefinished easel and two colors...yellow and violet...

I added several pieces using ModPodge...

I liked this very much but the challenge is to make marks.   So, I made marks...

Funny thing, I don't especially care for this so I will continue to add more 'marks'.   I'll let you know how it works out on Monday.

I also worked on my fabric landscape...

And I do like where this is going.   Lots more to add yet.   And then the quilting but I am happy with it so far.

BUT, I discovered something.   I have two area to work in...my fabric area and my everything else craft area.   I enjoyed working with my fabrics.   Can you guess why?   It didn't take long for me to understand...

See what's out and easy to get to?   My fabric!

In the other area, almost everything is in containers...

Yes, it's all neat and organized.   But it is also frustrating for me because too much is not as easily accessible as is my fabric.   For instance, if I am collaging I will need many different things.   So, I will have to take out lots of containers to look for the items I want to use.

It probably sounds petty, but I think that it is quashing some of my creative insights.   For instance, if I all of a sudden decided that I need a particular item but it takes up to ten minutes to find it, that insight may very well be gone.

So I need to look for a way to make these craft resources more easily accessible.   Any ideas? One idea I had was to hang a long rod on the wall from which I could attach lots of containers (with s-hooks).   I saw this at Ikea and really liked it.   A bit too costly at this point, but I think I could still use the idea with Dollar Store items.   What do you think?

Hope your weekend is full of lots of fun things to do...or relaxing if that's what you want.   I'll be keeping up with March Madness.   Most of the games this year have been quite good...like the Wisconsin/North Carolina game.

Thanks for stopping by...
Talk to you on Monday...

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

A WALK AROUND THE NEIGHBORHOOD

Today the weather was a bit warmer...it finally cracked 40 degrees about 2pm around here.   I decided to go for a walk...glad I wore a sweat shirt, a fleece vest and a jean jacket.   Wish I would have worn my gloves!  In the sunshine it was nice but in the shade...it was cold!

So I walked from my apartment on Shore Road up three blocks on 94th Street and then all the way down 3rd Avenue to Bay Ridge Road - about 23 blocks.   I was going to catch the train back but decided to walk back.

3rd Avenue is full of little shops - delis, restaurants, specialty stores, markets of all different cultures and only a couple chain stores.   Basically a drug store and Starbucks.   On the way I stopped at two different stores.   First up was The Book Mark Shoppe in the 8400's on 3rd Avenue...

It's a small shop crammed full of books and used books...


A Children's area...


And Yarn!

You can find the shop easily by looking for the tree outside the shop...

The folks in the store are kind and helpful.   If you're in the area, check it out.   While not as big as The Strand, the big used bookstore in lower Manhattan, it has a great inventory and you can even find yarn and knitting supplies AND a place to sit and knit if you want!

The other store I stopped by was Norma's Arts and Crafts Supplies Store in the 7800's on 3rd Avenue...


This store has a little bit of everything including a lot of children's crafts.   As a matter of fact, they offer birthday/craft parties for children as well as classes for both children and adults.   And they will order supplies if you need something special.

The shop which is small is the typical size of shops on 3rd Avenue.   The supply islands are on wheels so they are easy to move around to accommodate classes.  




The prices are extremely reasonable...actually, the stamps and fabric markers were downright cheap compared to other places.   Again, if you're in the area, check out the store.   The folks are friendly and helpful.

On another note.   I was reading some blogs this weekend and one suggested a way to have fun just making marks on paper to explore your creativity.   The first thing was to make three different types of marks on a piece of paper and then just have fun making lots more marks.  

Before I made the marks, I did color the background by swiping different colored stamp pads across the paper.   Then I made the marks and finally, I just had fun.   This is the result...

The first three marks I made were the deep pink wide swipes (middle lower left), the purple thin scribbles (right and a bit below the deep pink swipes) and the orange wide scribbles (center above the other two marks).  After that, I simply did whatever I wanted to.   It was fun and quite liberating.   You might want to try it sometime.

Tomorrow, Manhattan and Time's Square...

Thanks for dropping in...
Talk to you tomorrow...