In Finding the Moon

in-finding-the-moon“Don’t think. FEEL! It is like a finger pointing a way to the moon. Don’t concentrate on the finger or you will miss all that heavenly glory!”   Bruce Lee – “Enter The Dragon”

The Artistcellar Labyrinth series holds great inspiration for me. The variety of designs is an encouragement to slow down and listen, and to allow their voice to guide you. Or in the words of Bruce Lee, “Don’t think. FEEL!”

So it was, during the last full Moon, with my Strathmore Journal in hand, that I started my next design. I chose the Anasazi stencil. My heart was telling me it was the right one to use.

I stenciled directly on to the page in my Journal with Dye-Na-Flow Midnight Blue. By drying between applications I was able to produce a dappled effect of varying shades. Once the base was complete I layered lunar inspired colours of metallic acrylic. Warm highlights were added to accent and compliment the cool.

It is wonderful to experience the positive aspects of the full Moon by revising goals and setting intentions. Because of this powerful lunar energy, meditation is encouraged. I find just looking at the Moon introduces calm and stillness to what is usually a frenetic life. Mindfulness is highlighted. It is the perfect time to seek the benefit of walking a Labyrinth.

It was my time to put the work together. I’ve mentioned that I am compiling a great collection of images in my journal and from there I chose a watercolour swatch in shades of indigo. I also selected the Open Work stencil from the new Artistcellar Blocks series.  It has become one of my favourites!

The Bruce Lee Estate recently released a series of his 1968 pocket notebooks.  He filled them in neatly written script noting appointment details, affirmations, and his philosophy on life. They are inspirational. Reading through them, you can’t help but see how his life and work were intertwined…the fluid with the sharp, the public with the personal, and the strong with the sensitive. But above all, he had the power to still the mind and allow his spirit to soar. He found the compliment in opposites.

I kept his quote foremost in thoughts while working and allowed the collage to build itself. I wasn’t thinking of technique but rather was permitting the elements to find their own home. I allowed myself just to feel. When my collage was finished, I knew I had discovered a place of deep stillness. And once there I too did not will miss all that heavenly glory.

MATERIALS USED

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Shall I Tell You About My Life?

MAN OF THE WORLD

“Shall I tell you about my life
They say I’m a man of the world…” – Peter Green 

How do you share your deepest feelings? Do you ever use your Art to tell someone about your Life?

June’s Lunagirl Moonbeam challenge is all about Fathers and Brothers. As with all Lunagirl Collage Sheets, sometimes it is difficult to settle on just one image. But for me, the J. C. Leyendecker image from the “SharpDressed Man” sheet whisked me away on my journey. It was easy finding just the perfect complimenting backdrop…the Lunagirl Maps Sheet. I loved the look of the map…like an open book.

Who could this man be? What was he reading? Why does he look so serious? Could he be planning a great adventure or contemplating voyages of the past?

Working on the piece my thoughts were drawn to an early Fleetwood Mac tune, written by Peter Green in 1969. A melancholy song, it is about a man who has everything he desires except the true love of a partner. At the time Peter was fighting his own demons. And, as is the case with many artists, he let us witness a glimpse of his struggle by opening his heart through his work.

Supporting the digital aspect of the collage is a selection of stencilled conventional elements from my collection. As it is an introspective piece I added the Moon…the symbol of the soul, the capacity for reflection and renewal and the cadence of time.

Do you ever open your Book of Life sharing with us your voyages of the soul? Does your Art allow us a fleeting glimpse of your world?

The Mystery & Magic Surrounding You

#2016artjourney

Clandestine. Surreptitious. Hush-hush. Cloak-and-dagger. Mysterious. Secret. The words…and the feeling connected with them… encircled me when looking through the Gecko Galz Pretty Portraits collage sheets.  There she was. Right in the middle of the sheet…the beautiful woman in a turban.

Who could she be? I imagined a magician’s “lovely assistant”. I adore the art of magic. The oddities are so wondrous they draw you into a web of mystery. Sleight of hand to palatial stage shows, I am totally intrigued. And to me, the world of magic and mystery is summed up in one name: Houdini. Harry created his own reality which he shared with his audiences. He was a seeker, always looking for the next illusion, the next sensational escape.

The central image of my digital work is from the Gecko Galz Pretty Portraits collage sheet. The starry background is from their Moonbeams 2 sheet. The image of the Moon is from my collection.

Working on the image allowed me to realise that we are all part of the magic that surrounds us. As artists we seek, and we create a world filled with wonders. All we need is our lovely assistant called Creativity.

What Will You Be When You Grow Up?

WHEN I GROW UP

When was the last time you let your nocturnal imagination drift, allowing it to go anywhere it pleased? As a child, the night and the Moon enchanted me. Looking out of my bedroom window in Brooklyn, the sounds of the day segued into a hushed, almost reverent, atmosphere conducive to thinking, to dreaming.

And times like this I wondered where my life would take me. I knew the path I wanted to follow…but would it happen? My parents encouraged me to always listen to my heart and to find the best in any situation. Their New York values of  tolerance, generosity, and having an open mind always willing to learn, set me on the right course.

The Lunagirl Moonbeam challenge for January is to design using images from her lovely collection of Babies & Children. Although I’m not especially maternal, I drew from the memories of my childhood for the challenge.

The final image is a digital collage. It was easy for me to pick a photo to work with. I loved the way the two girls looked, as if they were sharing a secret. I added images of famous actresses to their skirts and a Verdi libretto to the bodice. What young girl doesn’t want to be an actress when she grows up? I couldn’t resist adding a benevolent face smiling down at the girls from the Moon.

Childhood can be a magical time of wonder. But it doesn’t have to end there. Each day is another chance to capture the effervescence of discovery. What will you be when you grow up?

Do You Believe In Mermaids?

Le Chanson de la Mer

Le Chanson de la Mer

Did you ever stand at the edge of the ocean silently hoping to hear the call of Mermaids?

With Summer officially ending for us in the U.S. this weekend, I thought it was the perfect time for the latest Lunagirl Moonbeams challenge: mermaids. All of the images in the Lunagirl catalogue are beautiful, but I finally decided to use the wistful maiden who appeared deep in thought.

I have always loved the elusive quality that surrounds Mermaids. Like a moon beam slipping across crystal, there is something beautiful and intangible about them. To me they are the all-knowing creatures sensitive to the Moon and the ebb and flow of the tides. In my heart Mermaids dive to the part of my soul waiting to be unrestrained…to be free to explore and discover all that life, and Art, has to offer. They are my guides, my Muse, and I happily follow.

The digital collage incorporates the Lunagirl mermaid as the focal point. Images, purchased and from my collection, are layered to complete the background.

Do you believe in Mermaids? Or are “Mermaids” just the echo of the distant part of our souls, yet to be discovered?

What inspires Your Heart?

Dreaming of the Moon

Dreaming of the Moon – Digital Collage

What inspires your heart? The question posed by Unruly PaperArts was a delicious one. And one I could not resist.

January 31st is the day designated as “Inspire Your Heart With Art Day”. The day encourages looking at Art of any discipline, making it a vital part of your life, and using today as a way of celebrating. Unruly PaperArts is doing just that by having an online Party!

For me, the Arts and my life are so intertwined I can’t begin to see where one starts and the other ends. It is a seamless, comforting, coverlet triggered by my dreams.

I’ve enjoyed working digitally. Again, my Muse led me to my collection of Lunagirl Moonbeam image CDs. With dreaming on my mind I chose Sir Frederic Leighton’s painting “Flaming June”. The beauty of the woman deep in sleep inspired me. What were her dreams and hopes as she blissfully reclined in repose? Who did she see in her dreams?

The composition fell into place…first Leighton’s woman, and the Moon and clouds. I added images from a conventional collage I put together a few years ago: the type, the rice paper, printed tissue paper.

My dreams inspire me. Following those dreams have taken me to places I have never thought possible. The Arts are the means…a soaring soul is my destination.

What inspires your heart…not only today, but every day?

A Simple Wish…

ATC

For You, The Sun, Moon, and Stars – ATC

For quite a few of us on the East Coast of the United States, this has been a glorious Holiday weekend…three days away from the routine of work, wonderful local events to share with friends and family, and best of all, weather sent to us from the Gods.

The ambiance was just the thing I needed to unlock the way to my Muse. Spurred on by my collection of quotes and saying I’ve collected over the years, I kept coming back to one:

“May the Sun warm you, and the Moon restore you, and Stars light your path”

Sitting under the pergola, listening to the birds sing, caressed by the warm Summer breeze, my Artist Trading Cards took shape. The substrate is illustration board. The background is a mixture of sponged Distress Inks of various hues. I stencilled and rubber stamped the patterns in metallic acrylic paint, dusted with Perfect Pearls to add a bit of shimmer. The inspirational quote cut from vintage paper finished the cards.

How often, we as Artists, look to Nature for inspiration. From the simple elegance of a sprouting seedling to the infinite wonder we experience when gazing at the night sky, it is all there for us. We just need to take the time to stop, look, and listen.

My wish is a simple one. May your Summer be filled with Sunshine, Moonbeams, and Starlight…and those you love to share them.