Tried my hand at some pallet knife painting... flowers of course. I'd heard the trick with using a pallet knife is to plan, use loads of paint, be brave and go for it. And so I did...
Did I mention I've finally finally received a pre-approval for a loan to buy us a home of our own? Yeaaaah!!! While I simply cannot wait to find the perfect little place to make perfectly my own, a limited budget means "little" is literal and my list of "must have's" is getting smaller by the inspection. Finding the right place in the right area at the right price is proving to be a little (lot) tricky.
Never mind though.. not a bad challenge to have I guess. I've been doing lots of dream building and creative visualising, now it's time for the universe to do it's thing. "Ask, believe, let go, receive. Ask, believe, let go, receive". This is a few pages from my Dream House File...
I sold these three paintings. Huge thank you to the purchasers, Rebecca at Gemelli Estate and the Art Gods (sorry no link available :) for their support...
I recall this time last year I spoke about my hope and excitement for the year ahead. It had been three years since my marriage break down, things were much calmer, the house, the finances, the settlement, the court battles, the boys battles... all the incredibly difficult and traumatic stressful heartbreaking stuff was done, dealt with... the horrible hard yards were behind me. Or so I thought. Apparently there was one last hurdle... myself.
Deep down I always knew this day would come.. the fear of facing it had been lurking inside me since the day I found the courage to leave. My life had been so difficult for so long (over 15 years), dealing with it had become my comfort zone. I knew once all the bad, sad, tough stuff was gone so too would my safety net, my out, my excuse for not stepping up and creating a better life for us. No excuses now. Just me. My moment of truth. Holy crap!
I felt incredibly vulnerable, raw, naked, inadequate, scared and totally overwhelmed by the emptiness of my life and how I could ever possibly fill it with happiness again. I have never felt so alone. Do I have what it takes to do this on my own? What if I don't? What if I can't? What if, what if, what if??? Anxiety engulfed me. Suddenly I was back fighting for some sort of normal. Something to hold on to, a foothold to stop me from falling and never getting up again.
Enter Kelly Rae Roberts... an angel in the shape of an awesome artist and creative business woman with a truly beautiful soul. Once again the universe had thrown me the perfect life line at the perfect time.
Yaaay... I'm back! Wow... in a blinding flash of beautiful chaos another Christmas has come and gone. And may I say, for the benefit of any other highly sensitive, extremely introverted, single working mothers... "Hal-le-lu-jah, thank God it's over!!!"
I know.. not very merry of me but what can I say... to be honest Christmas just isn't an easy time of year for me. I try hard to hold on to the magic but it tends to vanish into end of year overload by mid December and I'm counting the sleeps till Boxing Day. The season brings with it an exhausting (and expensive) mixture of lovely highs and depressing lows that I'm still trying to process and learn from in the hope that I can do it all a little better next year. And no matter how grateful and blessed I feel the eve before, Christmas Day itself somehow has a way of unearthing the lonely in me, underlining and highlighting it with added exclamation marks by the end of the day !!!
This year as part of my survival tactics I decided it wise to give myself some extra breathing space... along with the stockings and mistletoe I decided to also hang up my paints and artistic ambitions, just until after Christmas of course. To be honest I needed an artistic break, some time to let all that I'd learnt in the previous 3 months settle in to my being and hopefully meld into something unique to me. I cannot wait to get started again and see what emerges in 2015.
I do hope your Christmas was filled to overflowing with that special jolly magic that only Christmas can bring. If not I hope you know that it's ok, I hope you've done your best to feel the spirit... that's all we can ask of ourselves. In the words of Eric Sevareid... As long as we know in our hearts what Christmas ought to be, then Christmas is. Now dust yourself off and get on with creating a better year ahead. That's my plan.
Bring on 2015 !!!
Don't worry... Christmas is always full of fruit cakes :) Phillipa Cullen... lol
We are very fortunate to have a fantastic little art shop here in Singleton aptly named “That Little Art Place”. It has an amazing range of products at very reasonably prices, and the owner Lisa is so supportive and generous. They recently ran a competition for artists again aptly name “Peepers” for which we were supplied with a little gessoed panel with our brief which was to create eyes using the medium of our choice.
I of course left it until the night before deadline and had little time to spare and little to lose so decided to throw something together using my amazing Liquitex Acrylic Inks. The art gods must have been smiling on me that night because the result just seemed to flow so easily from me and without boasting too much I do loooove my little eyes...
I gave them the title “Behind The Masquerade” because many of us (me) have learnt to hide the pain we feel inside by putting on a bright and happy persona… I did it for oh so many years. I will never forget one Christmas the place I worked at did this lovely thing where they sent a card for each staff member to all the other staff members and we had to write something nice about each recipient in their card… it was a lovely idea. When I received mine it was full of messages like… so bright and cheerful, always happy, always smiling. Little did they know how desperately unhappy I was.
But I think, underneath the brave and happy smiling face, behind the masquerade, the eye’s always tell the story and I think I captured that in my painting which is what I like most about it.
Take the time to look into the eyes of those you care about when you casually ask them how they’re going… that’s where the true answer lies. Then, if you don’t see that happy sparkle.. you know, the one that can only come from a truly happy heart... ask again.
Oh and a nice little footnote… I sold my little eyes to the lovely Lisa at “That Little Art Place” who loved them too and will display them in her shop if you want to see :) Thanks for all your support and encouragement Lisa xx
Phew… I loved my 50th birthday celebrations but it’s also nice to be over that particular hill so to speak :) Aaaah… time to paint again and get on with living my dreams.
As I mentioned in previous posts I rather ambitiously (and insanely:) signed up for three E-courses by my three fave artists all at once and have been frantically trying to keep up with each for the past 6 or 8 weeks. I firstly completed Kelly Rae Roberts Hello Soul Hello Mixed Media Mantras which I looooved, then began Tracy Verdugo’s Paint Mojo and Flora Bowley’s Bloom True E-Course’s, both of which I’m about half way through, again I am just loving every ounce of both these course.
I’m learning soooo much, artistically and personally. Kelly Rae, Tracy and Flora are not only amazing artists, they are also such beautiful, creative, passionate, inspiring, ambitious, kind and giving souls. Their presence in my life right now is pure joy and divine timing... thank you again universe.
So besides partying :) here’s what I've been up to of late…
Lots and lots of layering and letting go. No plan, no expectations, no mistakes. Nothing but me, my paint and my fave music… bliss!!!
Ps. I feel the need to mention... none of these are anywhere near finished... all 5 of my current works are very much still in various stages of "the middle", as cleverly depicted in the illustration below which I can very much relate to! Except mine would be much much longer. Also known as 'the ugly teenage stage'... because every painting (and everyone :) goes through it.
Lots of noticing and sketching the world around me… shapes, colours, lines, the micro and macro. Wow… loving this!! We overlook and take sooooo much for granted. There really is magic and inspiration all around when we remember to look for it...
Lots of other fun creative stuff...
Not much time for much else… I promise my crazy layering techniques will morph into ‘something’ in the coming weeks. I have no idea what which is what makes it so fun and exciting. Stay tuned :)
Oh and I've sold some paintings at my exhibition at Gimelli Estate which is major exciting!!! Including this one to a lady holidaying from the USA who loved my art and is having it shipped back home… how good is that?! :)
October certainly has been kind to me. Life is good :) something I don’t take for granted and am truly grateful for. I hope November is equally kind to you too.
I won't tell you the details of Tracy's amazing techniques, you'll have to do the course for that. But I will share with you a few of my poems. I did four because the process was just so much fun and I amazed myself with each one... it was a little addictive actually. Plus I don't expect I'll ever do it again I let myself totally enjoy it. Here's my faves....
Not sure if I told you there was gonna be any winner's at the end of Flora Bowley's Bloom True Boot Camp (see all in Sept posts here). But there was and guess what?....
I'm a winner!!!
Can you believe that? Woohoo, yeehah and woopdy doo!!! Someone pinch me... I'm soooo excited I have no words to describe. Holy Cow! That's about all I got atm!!!!!
My prize you ask?
A spot in Flora's Bloom True E-Course... "a 5 week groundbreaking and transformational approach to painting (and living) that celebrates intuition, connects body, mind and spirit and allows unique and expressive paintings to emerge naturally and authentically". Here's a snippet...
Thank you Flora. And the Universe. And my courage. And me :) You are awesome!
I won, I won, I won !!!
Sorry, going now :)
Life is great when you participate. Phillipa Cullen
You know that saying.. "When the student is ready the teacher will appear"? Well all I can say is I must be really ready because so many amazing wonderful teachers are showing up in my life and I am lapping up every ounce of their artistic and life wisdom and knowledge... like a paint soaked sponge :) And I'm love love loving it!!!
Again the universe has placed in my lap just what I need at just the right time. This time in the beautiful artistic shape of the lovely Tracy Verdugo. As I said in my last post I have recently begun her Paint Mojo on-line course. Here is a taste of her loveliness, can you believe that's her singing too...
And this is what I've done in the course so far.
Some thumb nail sketches to gather inspiration...
A scratch foam print...
And a mono print...
Soooo much fun... can't wait to experiment more with these mediums. Or find out what Tracy has up her sleeve for us next.
Hope you are all enjoying this beautiful sunshine. I I spotted this today... trees are so awesome, even after their death.
I learnt soooo much from Flora Bowley's Bloom True Boot Camp (see previous months posts). So many tips and techniques and a lot about myself. The main thing I got from it though was a wonderful realisation and belief that I can do this. I can cram. I can find/make time. I can (and indeed should) prioritise my artistic ambitions. I am worth it.
But I want to learn more. Learn whatever it takes. Keep going. So I'm now throwing myself into another on-line course called Paint Mojo by another of my very fave artist's Tracy Verdugo.
Soooo excited... I'll keep you posted :)
Prob should go do some chores now. Not a lot of that been happening lately which, considering my frustrated post back in December, is a huuuuge leap forward for me and something I'm actually very proud of :) I have a life of my own now and with practice I've learnt to re-prioritise, put things off that get in the way of my needs. I've found that the urgent must do stuff gets done and everything else gets done eventually, after I do the things that matter to me? Only took me 50 years to figure that out!
Hope you're putting your needs first too.
If the shelves are dusty and the pots don’t shine,
it’s because I have better things to do with my time.
Another biggie for me. It's not easy being a perfectionist.. actually it can be crippling. It has been my biggest hurdle as an artist to date. It is the single biggest thing that will stop me from living my dreams... if I let it. I don't intend to let it any more!
In my last post I mentioned another on-line course I'm doing. It's called Hello Soul Hello Mixed Media Mantras by another of my absolute fave artists, Kelly Rae Roberts. I'm hoping neither Flora nor Kelly Rae will mind me cross-promoting their courses... they are both just the most awesome inspiring creative women on the planet and I am learning so much from them both not only in an artistic sense but mostly in a personal life journey sense. They say art reflects life and it's true... for me anyway.
Coincidentally I'm having to do some pretty deep soul searching stuff for the Hello Soul course, lots of letting go of the outcome, being fearless, staying unattached and trusting the wisdom of my heart... no matter what. And so I'm going to share that little (big for me) journey with you and walk you through the painting I created today for that course.....
But how do I? Should I really risk what I have created hoping for something better? What if everything ends up a big mess? What if I really regret it? Do I really want to take the risk? Do I have what it takes? Am I good enough? Obviously this little hurdle right here runs way way deeper with me than my art. I so so so want to overcome my "stuckness" in all areas of my life. Ditch my comfort zone(s) so I can live fearlessly and free, chase my dreams and go for the things I deserve... happiness, success, love. I knew I had to push through.. I had to keep going. It was excruciatingly difficult.
I can't help but have total gratefulness for the fact that I didn't stop at that first layer, or the second or third. Look at what would never have been. Look at what I'm capable of... I'm a little bit excited at the thought of what else I have in me. My mind is boggling big time.. again :)
So I hope I can take this arty lesson and apply it to the rest of my life. I will certainly try.
Thank you Flora... it was you that lead me to Kelly Rae actually. As they say when the student is ready. I am ready and I'm so so grateful that you both appeared. Flora your Bloom True E-course will be next.. I can't wait :)
Trust and believe... no matter what!
PS. Thought I'd share my finished piece.