Monday, February 23, 2009

7 Word Bio

Do you read the Accidental Creative?

They started a feature recently about writing your 7-word bio. Can you describe what you do in just 7 words? Think of it as your laser beam intro, a way to describe what you do quickly, clearly, and concisely so that your listener “gets it”.

Ok, I’ve been playing with mine. Whittling it down to 7 words is tough! But here are some drafts:

  • I paint small abstracts with lots of layers. (8)
  • Small abstract paintings with a big impact. (7) Not bad, but a bit vague.
  • Abstract paintings with transparent layers of bold colors. (8) Eh.
  • Small abstract paintings with bold transparent colors. (7) I like that one.

I think I’m on the right path, but I’ll keep tweaking for a while.

Give it a try, and head over to Accidental Creative to see what everyone else is thinking up.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

My Vision Journal

Have you signed up for Christine Kane’s ebook on Vision Boards yet? I did, and wow has it gotten me rolling!

The Process

I started with the writing exercise and the Be Have Do list. Then, I browsed through magazines cutting out images and text that resonated with me. I sorted them into groups, and spent every night for a week arranging and gluing pages.

The Pages

So far, I have an 8 page double spread in my journal. I chose to use a journal rather than a board because I carry my journal with me all day long. I wanted to be able to keep the images with me and be able to look at them anytime.

I didn’t buy a special journal. Instead, I used my everyday journal. The paper is thin and lined. Now that they’re loaded up with pictures and glue, the pages are a little wrinkly and warped – but hey, so am I! I thought about ironing them to take out the wrinkles and then decided to leave them alone. Nobody’s perfect and my pages don’t have to be either.

Each double-page spread has a common theme, and each spread has a different intent -- some are about a specific goal or desire while others evoke a general feeling or state of mind that I want to expand in my life.

Now that they’re done, most of the pages focus on my core values. Not one page focuses on material stuff. I didn’t intend for it to work out that way, but it did. Very cool.

I flip through my journal several times a day. Sometimes I’ll open it to a certain page and leave it on my desk or kitchen counter so I can look at it while I’m working or cooking. The feeling I get from looking at the pages is complex: happy, yes, but more than that. Satisfied, warm, proud, hopeful. Anticipatory. All of that. And more.

Here are a few pics. Yeah, I've made them small and fuzzy. The pages are personal, so I hope you’ll understand.

The Results
Results? Already? You bet. After only a few days, little things have already started to change. Not magically, let’s be honest. Christine emphasizes the importance of not only thinking about your dreams but also acting on them. Because the vision journal helped me clarify my wants and desires, I’ve started to take action on them. I’ve found myself being open for opportunities and putting myself in situations that move me closer to my goals. Small steps, sometimes, but steps nonetheless in the direction of my dreams.

How About You?

Have you made a vision board or vision journal? What's it like?

Sunday, February 08, 2009

Cleveland Has The Blues Treasury

Susan J. Hale of Numeric Design and also a local Clevelander has kindly included my One White Snowflake ACEO in her recent treasury, OOOooo Cleveland Has The Blues ooO. The treasury is a beautiful and elegant arrangement of handmade items in subtle shades of blue. I'm delighted and flattered that she's included my card.

Take a look at the treasury quick; it expires on Tuesday, Feb. 10.

And be sure to check out the number art and letter art in Susan's Etsy shop at and her blog at

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

Call for Entries - Color me Cleveland

From Artists Archives of the Western Reserve []

AAWR is looking for a few good artists!

Color me Cleveland, scheduled to take place from June 19 – 26. 2009, will be a city-wide festival of "plein-aire" art, the second in an annual fund-raising series held by the Artists Archives of the Western Reserve. We want to promote public awareness of the unique contributions of Ohio artists to the region's visual artistic heritage while at the same time celebrate Cleveland's parks, architecture, and public spaces.

On the "Painting Days," Friday, June 19th, Saturday, June 20th, and Sunday, June 21st, artists will spread out around Cleveland and surrounding areas, creating works in a variety of media at 10 - 13 pre-arranged outdoor locations. Advance publicity and notice through the area media will generate wide public awareness of the event, attracting audiences to the artists as they work.

In addition to a dozen or so distinguished Archived Artists who have agreed to participate, the AAWR is seeking twenty-eight artists to paint, sculpt, draw, photograph, and otherwise inform and perform on the Painting Days. The following day works will be brought to the Archives gallery facility on East 123rd, where they will be displayed during a week-long silent auction and during scheduled receptions. The week is concluded on Friday, June 26th with the Gala during which guests will enjoy food, drink, and entertainment while participating in a live final auction.

The Archives will receive a 60 % commission on all sales.

Entry is free, and many of Cleveland's best-known artists will receive this invitation – so please act now.

Name: _____________________________

Address: ________________________________________________________________

Phone: _________________________________________________________________

Email: _________________________________________________________________

Circle all that apply:

Yes I wish to participate in Color Me Cleveland as an exhibiting artist

Yes I wish to participate in the event as a volunteer

Email to []

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

February Goals

8 hours/week of studio time (minimum)
8 hours/week of computer time (blogs, etsy, twitter, forums, etc.)
4 hours/week of exercise

Total = 20 hours

I tend to be cyclical in my studio time – either I spend tons of time or none. Because of that, I tend to avoid working in my studio unless I have bunches of available time. Well, that rarely happens.

I know that when I paint regularly, my art gets better. If I walk away from it for a while, I get rusty. I waste a lot of time overcoming that rustiness each time I pick up a paintbrush again. I want to develop a habit of working in my studio regularly.

Good art doesn’t just happen. I have to work at it. I have to put in the hours. There are no shortcuts. Thinking and reading and talking and dreaming are no substitute for doing.

OK, 8 hours feels kind of wimpy. My perfectionist side wants to set a goal of 30 hours or even 40 hours – why set anything less than a big hairy audacious goal! Oh, good grief. I’m starting with a small, attainable goal.

8 hours is a start – a manageable start – especially considering the time required to market my art and keep myself healthy.

Over the coming months, I want to increase my studio time to 20 hours a week.

I’m challenged trying to figure out how to juggle these hours along with all the other tasks in my life.

But I’m confident that it will all fit. When I’m not exercising, my excuse is always that I don’t have the time and can’t imagine how to fit it in. But when I’m exercising regularly, it fits and so does everything else. I can’t remember what was taking up my time and preventing me from exercising.

So my studio time will fit. I’m confident of that.

How do you make it all fit?

Monday, February 02, 2009

The Same Goes For The Computer

My electronic gadgets are in cahoots to suck the life right out of my life*. My computer is as big a time drain as the TV.

I’m done with their siren song. It doesn’t keep me on my path.

Don’t get me wrong. There’s a place for entertainment and relaxation in my life. TV and movies are also great art forms and they’re part of our collective consciousness. They can be life-changing.

But sometimes they’re not.

And they can hold me back from doing other things that are also important. Balance is important. I need to balance sitting and doing, passive and active.

So, heretofore and henceforth, my goal is no more than 8 hours on the computer a week. Yes, I know it’s valuable – social networking, blogging, twittering, commenting in forums, updating Etsy and my web site. But Great Gravy can it take up time!

I’m hoping that by turning off the TV and the computer, I’ll open up time to paint. Not to mention what it could do for my electric bill.

* p.s. I’m well aware that it’s not the gadgets’ fault.

Sunday, February 01, 2009

Turn the TV off!

I admit it. I've been watching too much television. I turn it on as soon as I get home from work, plop myself in front of it through dinner until I nod off at bed time.

Don't ask me what I'm watching, because I honestly couldn't tell you. I'm not paying enough attention to know. Oh, I do watch certain shows and flip through bits of movies. I think I've seen 10 minutes of almost every movie ever made. Much as I like some of the characters, I couldn't tell you any of the plots.

It's Novocaine for my brain: TV on, brain off.

Blame it on hibernation season -- it's been cold and dark and snowy. But regardless of who (me) or what is to blame, enough already!

My clothes don't fit because I'm not exercising. My house is a mess because I'm not cleaning. My social life stinks because I'm hanging out in my living room with imaginary characters. I haven't read a book in 2 months.

I'm turning the TV off. Oh, I can watch a show sometimes if I turn the TV on to watch it and then turn it off when the show is over. But none of this mindless vegging and wasting of hours.

So...what do I do if the TV's not on?

  • Paint.
  • Exercise.
  • Read.
  • Go out and talk to real people who lead real lives. Enough with the scripted dialogue.
  • Finish the porch project.
My goal for today is to set goals and a schedule for February so I can start making better use of my time.

What are your goals for February?