Mixed Media Artist

Welcome to my blog. I hope that in the months to come you will come and visit and check out what I've been working on! Let me know what you think!
Visit my website at: http://www.lenall.com/

Sunday, March 21, 2010

New Bird Cards

8,000-10,000 Librarians are in the city today through Saturday for a convention of the PLA (Public Library Association.) I have asked all my consignment artists at the store to please beef up their cards in the store and many have done so. The past 3 weekends, I have spent Sunday in the studio making cards. These were done two weekends ago.
I wanted to find a theme for cards that would be an impulse buy for these women and I knew cats was one of them and guessed birds might be also. I bought these bird stamps last weekend at the Paper Zone sale. I think they work with these backgrounds well.

Most of the backgrounds were done in a Lisa Englebreight class 2 years ago. I loved all of them but for some reason, I never used them.

I just love pulling out old paintings and cutting them up and recyling them into something else. I had lunch with a painter friend this past weekend who reminded me that this is a great way to start paintings. I have always enjoyed the challenge of doing it.

I was hoping that this line could segway into Mother's Day, but I think I will need to do something else for that.

Do you recognize "my style" in these? I do. They aren't too sweet (not me at all.) But they are cute and colorful.

I hope they come and buy out the store. We will be ready! Charge!
Update: The store just had it's two biggest days ever! The Librarians have been buying my cards and lots of everything else! Yeah, Librarians! It's been one successful week!

New Cat Cards

These cat cards started from a desire to appeal to the Librarians coming into the Friends Library Store and also because I did very well with all 3 of the cat cards I printed from pieces I did last year.
Cats laying on books. It was a natural brainstorm idea. The books don't really come off as well as I'd hvae liked but they will do for this week. Tonight I spent an hour drawing about 25 more similar cats to add to backgrounds that have been cut. I think that I will add cat quotations to these next ones.

Again I love the backgrounds. All of them are so different. I really had a great day--all alone in my studio. I hope that is healthy! I think it was as I was very social this past week. I had two different, separate house quests Tuesday through Sat am. I went to a concert on Friday night and to lunch on Saturday. Spending the day alone was healthy.

These images started with stickers I picked up on our free table at a recent Portland Art Collective meeting. They had my name all over them!

Cats, or I should say, Kittens are on my mind these days as I am thinking strongly about adding a couple to my household.

I like this thought. I have done just this many a weekend day. I prefer doing it in the sun out in back though. I am sure others will relate.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

It's getting to look a lot like Eastertime!

I spent Sunday in my studio. Yes, it was The Academy Awards day. And yes, I did watch them but I didn't begin watching until 8:00 pm. I have DVR so I can do that. I'll have to watch the pre and post shows later this week. What an upset. I will have to see the Hurt Locker. I loved Jeff Bridges in Crazy Heart. He was fabulous! I spent between 10:30 am till 8:00 pm working on 27 original collaged Easter Cards. You say that's not a lot to show for myself? I beg to differ. I think these cards are very precious.

I used old sheet music, an old book of poetry, an old magazine, Papyrus cards and envelopes, colored pencils, a couple stamps, a gluestick, some handmade collaged paper, a piece of scrapbook paper, deli paper,

a sharpie, a piece of paper that I created using mixed media madness, a Japanese fortune cookie fortune.

The only element I cut out from the cards verbatium was the little birds and the branches. Everything else was just cut using a bunch of cards and papers as collage paper.

Easter baskets hold a very fond memory in my heart. We always put them out and got a very nice basket from the Easter Bunny. Our baskets were purchased when we were 4 kids and they were graduating sizes and different colors. (Too bad for David and Paul, and lucky Brenda and I.) I quess when Beth came along she got the big one (mine.)

I think the basket images turned out very sweet, don't you? They look almost vintage.

There are only 3 weeks till Easter and I haven't noticed Easter cards flying out the door yet. I decided to not make a zillion, as I did at Christmas and Valentine's Day, because this card giving season does not warrant it. I think that these will really add a special touch to the merchandise mix of the store!

Are you ready for Easter? I always equate Easter with flowers. Are your bulbs coming coming up? Mine are....

Thanks for looking!

Paint who you are.

Bohemian Rhapsody
My Mother's Daughter

Croton Hair so Fine

Sweet Bippy

Rose Sachet

It's much more interesting for you and for the viewer. *Robert Burridge

Oscar Wilde said, "Be yourself; everyone else is already taken."

This morning, I've been reading the Robert Burridge Artsy Farsy News: http://www.robertburridge.com/newsletter/artsyfartsy_feb10/
and came across these two quotes that really resonnate with me.

I have taken a hiatus from painting seriously this past year. Oh, yeah, not totally, as I painted my mixed media papers, I also did paste paper, and I painted at Art and Soul last year. But I really have not been painting. I haven't really explored why that has taken place. I don't think it's been a consious choice but more of that I have been doing more crafty things.

Lately, I have been thinking about doing some pieces that will be painted and collaged and I am anxiously percolating on ideas. I don't start though. I know once I start things will be great. Each weekend, I put it on my mental list of things to do yet when I get there I go back to mindless, relaxing mixed media papers or cardmaking.

In all that I do, I know I have a definite style of my own. I like that about myself. The style is bold, colorful, loose and out there. It might not be your style. It might not fit into your home. I have noticed the safer things that I do are the pieces that sell. Poured landscapes sold in 2008 so I made more for the 2009 show and I none of them sold. There were 3 or 4 of them that I thought were good.

So my question to myself (and maybe to you, too) is:

Do I do art that I want to do, purely for the joy of it without worrying what will become of it? Or worrying, will someone like it enough to buy it? Or will it be accepted by my peers?


Do I try to find a happy medium that will both please me and others? That way I know that I have a chance to sell pieces? I believe I can find a happy medium. Will I be happy with it? Will you?

Can we talk?

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Art and Soul sign up is this week. I have always gone on-line at 12:00 exactly to ensure I get the classes I wanted. The past two years, I have been successful. I don't know what it is because other years I was closed out of a couple classes. It's probably the economy. Maybe the fact that this is A&Ss' 6th year and people have "been there and done that..." It's probably the economy and every year the prices have gone up. Each year I think afterwards that maybe I won't sign up for as many classes next year because I am beyond some of the classes I have taken. I am not better than the teachers at all. But I am not the same artist I was at my first Art & Soul. Each retreat has touched me in many ways and I have grown some years in leaps and bounds. Last year, I came away feeling that maybe I should be more selective. BUT, I really enjoyed myself and the biggest thing it does for me is gives me a new injection of energy, creativity and inertia.
This year I signed up for:
1.Weds night/Thurs day: Painting Mindscapes with Stephanie Lee
2. Friday night: Shibori and Hand dyed Ribbons with Lorri Scott
3. Saturday: Sculpting a Sketch with Jane Wynn
4. Sunday: Freedom to Create with Jesse Reno

2 painting, one drawing and one fun.
Bring it on. The past few years Art & Soul has been my vacation. This year I will only have to take one day off. Can't wait!

Monday, March 1, 2010

Bella died today....

Bella was an alpha female. She was very sweet but wanted to be my only kitty. When I first got her I had 2 other cats besides her brother. After living here a year, she chased away my little female because that cat was my kitty. Little Cat was chased next door to live with my friend, Mary. It will be interesting now that Bella is gone to see if Little Cat comes to visit more often.

Bella was a hunter from a very early age. At one point, we were getting so many gifts that Frank made me go get a collar with a bell so that it would give her prey warning. It did cut down on her "gifts." Bella was only interested in the hunt, she was very patient and could be seen sitting out for hours stalking her prey. She enjoyed bringing them in, but lost interest after they were dead. That's where Jazz came in--he likes to eat things...enough of that.
Being an alpha she felt it her duty to patrol the yard and ensure that the raccoons did not come into the house. She guarded the cat door and the food. I would come down at night and put the cat food in the garage so she could be relieved from her duty as sentinel. I will always remember her for this.

Bella was a kitty who liked to sit close to me. She was the type that when you hugged her to you she held on and didn't want to be let go. She used to sleep with me too. When she was young, she would come to wherever I was at 10:00 like clockwork and meow to tell me it was time to go to bed. If I did not come she would go without me and I would find her there waiting later. Lately, she would wait till I got settled and then she'd come in and find a place near my hands so that she could cozy up to them and so we could sleep touching.

Her fur was very soft and she barely weighed anything she was so small. This summer she was injured probably from being stepped on. Her spinal column was off a bit at the last vertebrae. It effected her walking but she did not give up. She still got out there and from what I was told and saw did not live in pain.
This month, I had taken her to the vet to see if anything could be done for her. He gave her a high dose anti-inflamatory injection. It worked well as she began walking almost correctly on her back paws. This past friday, I got a perscription for pills that were a lower dosage to be taken for the next couple weeks. I was following the directions to a letter and watching her closely. Sunday, I came home to find that she had thrown up her breakfast and there were additional spots that looked like bile. This happened all day. I got her to drink water but she continued to throw up. She sat with me in the evening for a while and then went into the bedroom and layed on the floor. I picked her up when I went to bed but she immediately jumped off. In the morning, she was very week and breathing a bit hard. She also was moist on her head. I sat with her while she drank water and then she just laid her little head on the rim of the little bowl. It just broke my heart. She got up and moved away from the bowl while I was out of the room.

Before going to work, I asked my friend, Mary, to check in on her. I called and talked to the vet once at work, but he wasn't in yet. I explained all the symptoms and they said it sounded like a reaction to the drug and that she should get better. The vet never called. I called again at 10:30 and they had not talked to him yet. Mary called me sometime around 12:30 and told me that she was gone.

This is the second cat that I have lost on March 1st. The first one got killed in the road. I buried her at the spot that she used to like to sit and watch birds.
I will miss your sweet loving personality and friendship.
I will miss the feeling I felt when I heard your little bell ringing as you came in search of me.
I will miss how you cozied up to my hand and arm to sleep at night.
I loved you, Bella.