Friday, August 1, 2014

Washi Tape Flowers with Cathe Holden

 I attended a "meet up" workshop at Cathe Holden's Inspired Barn studio in Petaluma, CA. I created 9 flowers, enough for three little corsages.
 She showed the group of ladies gathered in her magnificent wonderland of a studio how to create the individual petals and leaves with wire and washi tape.  If you are not familiar, washi tape is colourful paper tape, originally from japan - but now available all over.  You can buy it by the roll or in packs.
She gave us each a tiny little tin bucket to carry our flowers home.  It is this attention to detail that i love!
 The supplies are simple - an assortment of tapes, some wire, some curling tools and florist tape.
 Without giving away all her secrets - you can see here the beginnings of the petals.
 It helps if you have a killer assortment of floral stamens.
 And a dozen or more washi tapes....  this is what it is all about people!  
as i always say - it is simply more more fun to play with someone else's Barbies 
(remember back when you were 7?).  '
And Cathe has the best Barbies in Northern California!
Here are some of the other student's flowers:

The variety of patterns and colours is so inspiring.
Here are some that Cathe made to show us how:

To learn more about Cathe's workshops and Inspired Barn click HERE.
To see the last workshop i took with Cathe click HERE.

Crafty Vacation

I spent a glorious week at my sister's lakefront cottage and among all the fun and sun managed to find some time to do some craft projects.  This is the view on from the dock.  Yeah - pretty awesome.
 First up was to create a hand painted sign for the little cottage where we slept.  I purchased the painted tin bird last summer, but didn't get a chance to do the sign.  I bought a plain unfinished wood oval at the dollar store.  i painted it with blue acrylic paint and added the blossoms in creamy white.  I wrote out the name in script by hand then painted it in yellow.  i added the dots around the edge with the butt end of the paint brush.
I bought this canvas at the dollar store - i think it was $3.  Just a plain canvas with the outline of an image you can paint with the cheap pack of included acrylics.
WOW - so bright - this is how it turned out!  it was fun and mindless - like a paint by number - but with a little bit more freedom to do it your own way.
My sister asked me to paint something on this used wine bottle.  I used some borrowed glass paints to add a simple wildflower design.
My niece Erica started painting some sticks.  I did the blue one.  
She now has a whole bundle.
I had some fun with paper clay and made three little stylized birds.  I painted them blue(duh) and gave them a brown glaze - but forgot to take a picture!
Most fun of all was this project i did with my friend Z, my sister D, my niece E, her aunt T and cousin T2!  We took empty pendant bezels and filled them with papers and doodads then added two part Ice Resin.  the key is to let them sit out of harm's way for at least a day and resist the urge to touch them!
Here's how fantastic they looked with added ball chain.  
And finally as a special gift to my sister and brother in law, Z and I created this whimsical paper  origami boat and fish mobile for the little cottage.  Such a fun project and such a fabulous vacation.  
Big thanks to my sister's family (missing my nephew Evan from this pic) for hosting us at Lake Hughes, Quebec, Canada.  I'll be back next summer for certain....!

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Asian Brush Painting Show

I had the pleasure of attending an intimate art show at the Stinson Beach Library, to celebrate the artwork of my friend Sandy.  The show runs though July - so you can make a visit!
 Here she is with some of her beautiful Chinese brush paintings.  She has been studying with the master painter Madeline Fu for several years.
Here is a close-up of one of her paintings - so much beautiful detail.  In case you have wondered about the red square stamps on Chinese artwork - it is a custom stamp with Sandy's Chinese name.  All the artists use them. 
We had a lovely drive though the hills and forests of West Marin, and had lunch at the Breakers with some dear friends.  A wonderful way to spend a sunny summer's day in Marin County...thank you Sandy!

Fantasy Landscape Workshop

I took a workshop with Chris Cozen at A Work of Heart in San Jose last weekend with my art buddies Z and S.  it was a long drive - but it was TOTALLY worth it! 
We spent the day in the art filled store and studio space creating two fantasy mixed media collages.
We were asked to bring two images to use as inspiration.  I printed the pic above - showing the famous Faraglioni rocks off the coast of Capri in Italy's Amalfi coast.
We started by identifying the horizon line and copying it to our wrapped canvas with a pencil.  Then add a few key features.  the intent was to be inspired by our image - not to necessarily copy it exactly.
Here is Chris demonstrating how to create a light wash of colour for the background - starting with the earth. She uses all Golden brand paints - which have the intensity to handle being watered down with glazes and mediums and still maintain the vibrant colours.
Here is the little "kit" of Golden paints we were given as part of the class.  Of course we could use any other of the dozens of other paints and supplies to create our artwork.
Here is my first layer of paint - the water around Capri. I mixed assorted blues and aquas with glazing liquid.
Here is after I added some greens and ochres for the islands.
then comes the fun part!  we each brought a ziplock bag of paper scraps and ephemera - plus Chris had more to share.  We tore or cut pieces of papers to add colour, texture and interest to the painting.
Here is Chris demonstrating adding collage to one of her dark canvases.
Here it mine with more playing around and experimenting with bits of collage. Next step - glue it all down with matte medium.
Here is my second fantasy landscape - a misty image of a Tuscan hill town.
First step, transfer the horizon line and the hills to the canvas with a pencil.
Second step add some paint wet on wet to create a background.
Then fill in with a little more definition.
Next comes the scraps and bits of collage.
Here is the final outcome!  after all the collage was glued down I added more colour with glazes and finished the sky.
Here are some of my fellow students work - so varied and SOOOO beautiful:

This ethereal tree is by my friend Z.  She wants to add more layers and colour to add depth to the leaves and branches.
this colourful seascape is by my friend S.
and here is S's second landscape - still very much a work in progress - but looking pretty good!
What a fun and creative day we had.  Chris was an excellent teacher who gave us lots of personal attention.