Monday, November 25, 2013

The Artstronauts Club is finally live!

My next big project is here!
It is our goal to have this meeting place that continually has new sources of inspiration in the form of online workshops, interesting videos, relevant articles and how-to's, downloadable art and art supplies (like collage sheets, patterns, wrapping paper, etc.), tips on new art supplies and books, random quirky stuff and a forum to share ideas and your own art.  We will delve into anything and everything that enhances your creative life.
Tracy and I will be your editors, but we have a huge network of amazing artists, teachers, musicians, videographers and photographers who are excited about this project and will be contributing their own unique ideas as well. We keep hearing how excited they all are and how this just "feels right". We feel the same way!
Right now, we are on the ground floor of this behemoth project and while we have big ideas, we also want to allow space to see how this grows and expands.  I know a thing or two about following a creative idea and know how it can lead to adventures far beyond what I could have envisioned.
The subscription price is $5/month.  For that you will receive full access to everything on the site which will include new content every couple of days. We will include a few videos each month as well as some digital art supplies, among loads and loads of articles, tips, reviews, videos, etc.  A value of $100/month for the workshops alone, all for the cost of a grande coffee latte!  We want to make this affordable to all, but also help us keep food on our table and new art supplies on our art desks.  ;)
To see what all the fuss is about, go to:

and look for the little "JOIN" tab at the top

Wednesday, October 09, 2013

Magical Life

I recently did a speaking engagement at an art retreat and several of the attendees asked that I post it on my blog.  So here it is.

Tips for a magical Life

First of all, find your joyful process.  Mine happens to be journaling.  But you may have more.  Recently, my joyful process has been focused on the process of transforming our living space.  More about this later (in another post).

So, if you can connect to your joyful process, you will connect with your passions which in turn will cause people to notice and then they will connect with that.  They will notice and connect whether it's through viewing your artwork, reading your blog, talking to you at the coffeeshop, etc.  Your passions will make you and what you do much more intoxicating and interesting.

The best artists are the ones who are constantly on the lookout for what makes the heart beat faster.  Be sure to sketch it, take a photo, make a note of it, or even post it (pinterest, Facebook, a blog).  This gives you vibrant inspiration which in turn will be seen in your work.

Put your art first.  Stay open.  Put in a TON of hard work.  Regard work as a fulfilling opportunity to be the person you want to be and have the life you want to live.  I love to work and lose my vitality when something gets in the way of it.  It's always been that way.  If work is a negative word for you, find a way to make it positive.  Magic will happen.

Rituals can help.  They help bring focus and energy to your day.  Some of mine include:

  • Coffee and journaling every morning.  This can be done at a coffee shop or at home (these days it's been at home).  I have a journaling desk that always has my open journal on it with some pens.
  • I prepare vegetables in the morning for the day.  I try to be in the moment while I am cutting them and washing them.  I notice their brilliant colors, textures, smells.  I try not to think about the day while I am doing this.  This makes meals so much easier and greatly reduces the amount of time to cook.  When I am barreling through the day, the last thing I want to do is bring my creating to a halt and spend an hour cooking.  It allows flow throughout the day.
  • I take a break about 3pm for a snack and read through my books and magazines for 15 minutes.  If I am tired, I take a nap instead.  This helps me to not get too obsessive with my work and projects and reminds me to stop and breathe.
Organization is the key to success.  Make your organizing time enjoyable by listening to music.  Be in the moment and enjoy the process.  I cannot stress enough the value of being organized.
  • Tidy when your studio is tidy (this would apply to your whole house too).  Don't let it get really bad.  Slow down and take that extra 5 minutes to put away your mess.
  • Get rid of stuff!  Clear out every cupboard, drawer, closet, room.  This is so simple to do and makes your life so much more magical.  LESS THINGS = CLEAR HEAD = BETTER CREATIVE FLOW.  Fill up large trash bags, take them to a charity center and smile all the way home.  As you are unloading clutter from your house, you are feeling lighter with every trip to the Goodwill.  Don't consider for a moment how much something is worth that you are getting rid of.  Instead focus on the fact that it's just the price you are paying for living a creative, flowing, magical that flows and allows you to breathe and be at peace.
It's all about the Flow.  You need flow in your body.  Your environment needs to flow.  Your artwork needs flow.  And of course your passions rely on flow.  Flow happens when stagnant energy is removed.  Clutter does not equal flow.  Cupboards that are packed with stuff is not flow.  Eating foods that aren't good for you is not flow.  Having too much in your home so you can't walk around freely is not flow.  You get the picture here.  Strive for flow in ALL areas of your life.

Goal setting is SO important too.  Write goals and "wants" down.  Say them out loud.  Know in your heart that they will happen.  Your list of goals is telling the Universe where to focus their energy.  So, think BIG!

It is hard for artists to have schedules.  I struggle with this.  But a rough outline can really help.  If you don't have a schedule, you can flutter away hours on the internet.  It also allows the time and space to work on everything in your life you want to make time for.  I would encourage you to sit down and write something out that includes everything you want to have time to do.  Change it as needed as you go, adding and deleting activities to make your ideal life.

Lastly, work really hard.  Don't wait for inspiration.  Be wary of other people telling you what to do or what you should do (even as I am sitting here doing just that by writing this manifesto).  ;)  We all intuitively know what we need to do.  Muster the energy within yourself to just make it happen.

When I had a real passion for something, it made me focus DEAD-ON!  And I worked really hard at that regardless of other interesting intrusions.  So, to summarize:
  • Find your Joyful Process
  • Connect with your Passions
  • Shoot for a state of Flow
  • Rituals are good to have
  • Organization is Key
  • Make a list of what you want in Life
  • Believe in the fact that you will get it
  • Work really hard
  • Stay Focused
  • Try to maintain a schedule

Monday, August 26, 2013

One Week Left till the fun starts

 The final run of The Mermaid Circus will be starting in a week and we still have a few spots left. We are limiting the size this time due to a more managable facebook group for everyone to share in. I'm not one to toot my own horn, but this IS a fantastic experience and one that won't be repeated. Even if you don't like circus's OR mermaids, there is so much great information to apply to your work. We have even been approached about doing a book on it, it's that awesome. Neither of us have enough time to devote to a book so if you want to see it, this is your last chance. For the amount of sheer lessons and the fact that you don't have to travel anywhere to take this, it's a great opportunity. hope to see you in the classroom.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Big Journaling for Big Intentions

Call of the wild soul is a retreat that first started in england.  I had the honor of being one of the teachers at that event and it was an amazing experience.  Erin Faith Allen has combined art with the deeper aspects of the soul to create an event that will expand your awareness and talent exponentially.  When asked if I would come to Petaluma in Nov., I didn't hesitate to say YES!  I approach this retreat differently than I do my other workshops in that I let it ALL out...I dive deep to tell you where my art, images and techniques really come from and how to access that secret ingredient yourselves so that your artwork and your everyday lives really sing!

 This workshop is more about paint and crayons as opposed to my normal "collage and pens" style I usually teach.  
hope to see you there.

8 new ones

Sunday, July 28, 2013

The party of the Year!

In case you all haven't heard yet, Tracy and I were asked to be the guest speakers at the Petaluma, CA. retreat called Art Is You.  We have heard good things about this event from teachers who have taught at  our events (Artfest, Journalfest) so we were thrilled to find out we get to hang out with all our friends again.  We are throwing in a fun workshop that is free to all attendees during the opening night party.  There will even be cake!  Friends, fun, art and cake...what more could anyone want?!  We will also have some fun stuff for sale during the vendor night as well.  Hope to see you all there!

Saturday, July 27, 2013

The circus is coming! The circus is coming!

The first time the Mermaid Circus came to town, it was incredible.  The art that was produced was crazy good.  Not only were our students inspired by our videos but everyone was inspired by each other as well.  It was amazing as you can see from these photos below (all were created by students).

 These photos from students are just a tiny little sampling from the facebook group postings thatwas a part of the workshop.

The Circus is COMING BACK TO TOWN!!!  
If you missed it before, you won't want to miss it this time around.  It starts on Sept. 2nd.  For those who were in the workshop before, there will a couple new videos from me as well as a $50 discount to re-enroll.  click on the link below to learn more.

Monday, July 22, 2013

july journal pages

Been really trying to journal every single day as my form of meditation.  It's not that it is work or I have to force myself to do it...I have so much fun at it, that I almost feel guilty when I devote a large chunk of time to it....Like I should be doing something better with my time.  So when I look at it as my form of meditation (which it totally is) , I give myself permission to take the time to do it.  And it's been feeling so great.  I'm still amazed after 1000's of journal pages over the past 25 years, that the act of making art is still something that nourishes the depths of my being.  It just feels like something my body needs like sleeping and eating.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

New eye candy.

 I feel like I sorta retired when I decided to quit doing artfest, journalfest and the play retreats.  However, my life hasn't slowed down one bit, it has simply changed focus.  It has been an awesome ride, taking me to places that are new and different.
I've been more than a little obsessed lately with journaling.  I find myself not wanting to do anything else but create.  Thankfully, we just spent a week in los angeles where Tracy taught for 3 days while I got to sit on a deck in the woods (up in Idyllwild) by myself and journal.  It was complete bliss.  But it didn't stop when I got home.  Even posting here is something I am forcing myself to do instead of journaling.  All I want is to immerse myself back into my pages.  But I need to remind myself that balance is everything.
 I'm not entirely sure this page is finished.  I was having fun with my irojiten colored pencils on the background.  love smooth and creamy.  makes my prismacolors and my coloursofts seem super grainy.

 I was reading an interview the other day with Gwyneth Paltrow.  She was talking about going away on a spiritual retreat of sorts.  She set intentions every day she was there but on the last day when she decided to ask the universe the big questions, she said she went on a hike in the red rocks (of arizona) and the rocks literally spoke out loud to her saying the quote I wrote out above.  It really hit me when I read it.  I don't think we give ourselves enough credit.  We truly ARE superheros that intuitively know the answers to our own questions.  We are so much more powerful than we think we are.

 mermaids are still popping up on my pages...

what's up ahead?
Lots (TONS) more journaling.
Our last art romp starting on july 7th.
Some online stuff that I am working on with my daughter, Tiphoni.
Our Summer Evening series workshops (space in everything except the journaling portion).
Speaking (and selling) at Art Is You in Petaluma end of September
and to round out the year, I'm teaching at the Call of the Wild Soul retreat in Petaluma the beginning of November.

Thursday, June 06, 2013

Pink and Gray spells Hooray!!!

Ever since I randomly put these 2 colors onto the background of my journal page, I have been crazy mad about it.  I used a neon red paint and a greyish green and wiped them both down with a paper towel while they were still wet to mute them.  This is a work in progress (which I hope is obvious)...

So, when I started painting some extra pages in my moleskine today to get it ready for an upcoming trip to los angeles, I had to use this combo again (although this one is neon pink and grey) and I thought...I should blog about this since I LOVE IT SO MUCH!
I suddenly realized that I was wearing it too!... (I told you I was crazy for this combo...or am I just crazy?)
I think this is use a little neon with a dull color.  SO awesome.
neon pink and brown!!!  or khaki...or army green...I'm getting excited again...
My new neon red liquitex paint pen with some grey montana paint pens.  ooohhh...yum...
 Are you getting my drift yet?  
 I know it seems like these shots are staged.  I assure you they are not.  I had no idea that I had inadvertently assembled little collections here and there with this yummy color combo.
I found these little storage bags at target a couple months ago.
 I found this betsey johnson design (betseyville) from JC Penneys...$30 and had to have it.
 see how handy these are?
wood and neon...I will have to play around with this combo more.  Try it.  You'll like it.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

new stuff finally!

 I have been so immersed in life and work that I have neglected my much treasured blog readers.  I am so sorry.  I've been doing alot of blogging on my Mermaid Circus Online workshop site, so I haven't been thinking about it here too. are the latest.
 These weird yellow ones were completely done during the last 2 art romps we held.  I find it interesting that they look so different from my normal stuff (at least to me).  They sorta don't look finished and yet I am in that state of liking them the way they are and being afraid if I go further I won't like them as much.  I think I'll call them done and move on.

 Being influenced by gazillions of mermaids on my brain the last few weeks.
This is a strange little page too.  no explanation.  it's just what came out.  ;)