Saturday, January 30, 2010

Grounded Artventures!

Sometimes being grounded is not all that bad as I found out today.

My artventures began with these ladies who were taken down to get their monthly dusting. LOL! Hey, I work hard and prefer to make art on my days off. LOL!

Our Lady of Guadalupe has stood on this box off and on for years. This was an exchange I received at the stamp store about, um, 7 years ago?!!! Shame shame. I had no idea there was a little treasure inside! All these years I thought it was a beautifully collaged empty box. Until today when something nudged me to try to take off the lid. "OH-MY" went my heart. This little wrapped book stared at me.

I unwrapped the red ribbon and an accordion book opened to reveal faces and collaged images. I could not believe this sat waiting for me in the box all these years. I remember receiving this trade from Danita who temporarily left Los Angeles for D.C., Maryland or Virginia where her husband was to begin working at The Smithsonian. I think. It's been a very long time!

How many more years would have gone by had I not become curious while dusting?!

To be grounded need not be boring. It can bring about visually appealing space, unearth found art or bring much needed quiet time. I experienced all three today as my car sat in the driveway preventing me to get away. It's missing an important part which is required in order for me to drive off. A blessing in disguise, as my friend Ramon would say.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Journal This!

I've talked. I've asked. I give up. So I wrote. And hoped to feel better.

Journaling is good therapy for me. The searching of words helps calm me down.

I love the zettiness of these legs and they're perfect for this page.

When I saw the words "self city" looking up at me I screamed "WOW! How'd you know?!!!" Never heard it before but I love it!

By the time I got to this page I could feel the mad woman in me beginning to leave. And I owe it all to words and images.

So did the mad woman finally hit the road?

Yes she did! Journaling. Cheap therapy.

I was feeling frustrated and out of sorts recently. Work overload probably had something to do with it. Throw in an "Oh no, not again" moment and I had the perfect makings for a mad-woman-journaling session. LOL! I suppose the universe knew just what I needed because once again the words sat there waiting to be used. I felt so much better after my mad-woman-journaling session btw. And I didn't even have to yell at anyone.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Heartfelt Artventures

This heart greets me each time I walk up the steps to my front door.

And as I was leaving the house today this raggedy heart said good-bye and good luck.

The raggedy heart said good luck to me because this is where I'll be standing post for the next 8 days. Yes, it's that time of the year again. The long awaited book fair that I get constantly asked about throughout the school year by the little rug rats.

Oh yeah, this is where the action happens! Right here at the "cashier's" desk. Would you look at all those lovely novelty items? THIS is where the rug rats wave their dollar bills at me. LOL!!!

Only during a quiet moment can I see what the book fair is really all about. All that unpacking, rearranging and making room for tables and book cases is worth the effort when you hear the excited sounds and see the ear to ear smiles of pint sized humans!

What's old is new again. So what else is new? LOL!!

It'll be a few days before Curious George and all the other regulars who are typically in full view can come out again. For now they're hiding behind tall metal book cases filled with the latest titles Scholastics has to offer young minds.

You gotta love what you're doing when you go to work on Sunday and you don't have to be there. Well, I don't hate my job and it's safe to say that I like it a lot. Love? I love the long periods of time I get off. The pay isn't that great. But it's wonderful when the kiddies you once read stories to come back to visit when they're in high school or college. I guess it's OK to say I love that part of my job too. Some of them even come back to the book fair and buy stuff. Hmm. I guess I love that too. LOL! Yeah OK, so I suppose I love my job after typing all that. How many of you get to see young adults who you didn't raise come back to visit you year after year and listen to them reminisce on how they remember you reading them this or that or what kind of books they used to buy during the book fair? It's a pretty good darn feeling, fo sho. You even start to say silly things when you work around youngsters. Like fo sho which I have no idea what the spelling is like. It's all phonetic with me. Whatever, the book fair is here! Pray for me!!!! And how about those hearts looking at me as I leave and come home?!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Sciatica Artventures

Rainy days and Mondays "OFF" never get me down!

Along with rain comes rain drops!

To make me feel better I went through my stash of buttons and other lost objects.

Below is a test strip of Brilliance Inks against black. My future project involves black and some kind of "pop" in the way of color.

I just love the colors and collage works of Lynne Perrella. One or more of these images will find their way into my project.

I've been nursing wacky and painful sensations that run from my booty down to my calf. LOL! Well, at least I can laugh about it. Instead of stressing over it, I challenged the pain to a little art session. The weather was right - rainy, and I pulled out some of my nearby stash. Very cost effective! Not what the doctor ordered but just what my muse insisted I do to make me feel a little better. God I love her!

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Sniffling Artventures

It all happened so fast.

Why do people go out in public when they're ill? OK, yeah well work doesn't count. LOL!

Yes, even as I deal with my first cold of the decade I can't stop myself from playing with words and images. What an observation - my first cold of the decade! How could I not write about it then? I simply had to and fortunately the words and images all fell into place. This journal is coming along nicely and with great ease. Even with a sick head.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Winter Artventures

I continue to recycle Christmas cards to add visual impact on the pages of my journal.

The top and lower border on the page below came from a card with a scene of the manger. Notice the donkey looking over my page? LOL!

When I find interesting images in magazines I rip them out and save them in my "one day" baggie. That's where I found "Mother Karma's" eye.

My son and daughter-in-law took a trip to Olvera Street and look what they brought me!! Aren't they cute!! Just think, in another 11 months they'll be hanging on my Christmas tree. Wow.

It's supposed to be winter and I'm not trying to rub it in when I say the daily temperatures in Los Angeles have been in the mid to upper 70s but it does get cold at night. Well, somewhere in the low 60s. I think. Again, not trying to rub it in! It's during the cold of the night when I can be found sitting at my table cutting, gluing, searching for the right words and getting busy in my winter journal. It is after all a winter journal and the atmosphere has to feel just right.
My mission to be a more calm and stress less me continues. I feel a certain freedom to do what brings me joy rather than being tied down to my emotions. Can you tell?

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Artventurous Epiphany

It's a tremendous help to me that the pages of my winter journal were painted in advance. This makes it much easier for me to keep it up as half the work is already done.

I'm recycling several of my Christmas cards to use in this journal. This stain glass is part of a card I dissected for this spread. I love the colors and I wanted to make it work on this page. It worked!

The Epiphany is the day when the three kings found baby Jesus in the manger. Perfect card for this day's journal entry. Things are just coming together so easy for my pages. It has to be a sign that it was time for me to get back into my journaling mode.

We've always kept our Christmas tree and lights up until Jan. 7th, the day of the Epiphany. I know other families who also follow this practice but what I just learned this year is that there are also families who celebrate this day as Christmas. There are a few Egyptian and Ethiopian Christians at our school who follow this practice. I found it very interesting listening to several children share their traditions of this holiday with me today as they visited the library. They were very excited and looking forward to celebrating at home once school was over. One little boy with the longest eyelashes (I swear I saw the tips hitting his eyebrows!) had so much love in his heart as he told me about the wonderful dishes his mother would be making tonight. I can't believe it took me 54 years to learn about this. Where the heck have I been?

Monday, January 4, 2010

Back-to-School Artventures

When I first printed out this picture it was smeared with ink in a very odd but interesting way so I used it. Not sure how or why this happened but it may have something to do with the type of paper I used. I altered it a little further by adding "highlights" to my hair and eyes.

I took this picture of the library as soon as I stepped in. Very dark and cold with a slight scent of "old book pages."

I recovered from my first-day-back-blues after reacquainting myself with the books.

Is there really a saint for reluctant readers? I don't know but there's a book in the library about saints for just about every kind of situation so maybe I should look it up. I'll let you know what kind of interesting facts I find. In the meantime, "she's" it. I think she looks very fitting for this title, don't you? Click on the photo to get a closer look.

I'm not very comfortable with card making. My skills are at the beginner level. LOL! I've challenged myself to send handmade cards to my artsy friends this year. It has to be the artsy ones because you guys get it. I'd be crushed if one of my cards ended up in the recycling bin after all that work. And with me it's a LOT of work. LOL! This will be going out to a special woman who has a birthday coming up this month.

It was back to school after being off for a blissful 2 weeks. Ah, peace. Calm. Sleep. Why did it have to end so quickly?! The morning BEFORE I get to work is always hard but once I get there this happiness takes over. It's as if I've received a shot of "happy." LOL! Anyway, I should count my blessings rather than dread the thought of work. It's a tough world out there and I'm one of the lucky ones.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Winter Journaling Artventures

I enjoy the privacy and calm my art room provides. I don't mind being in the farthest part of the house away from the main room. I can sit, work, pile stuff up on my table, listen to music and not think about who may need space.

Left-overs are great, aren't they? Especially when you've got plans to make some art. Who has time to cook when you've got a project in the making?! I decided to create a page featuring my love of left-overs. Do you get that when you see this pic?

I'm trying to work on a new attitude of worry and stress less. I've got to be a calmer me in 2010. Wait. Is that a resolution cause I'm not a resolutionist type of woman! Am I stressing about this? Shut up. LOL!

Do you make New Year's resolutions? I used to but I failed terribly over and over again so I decided to abandon the idea. I did an interview with myself about this. LOL! YES, I interviewed myself. You should try it sometime to see how honest you can be with yourself. Click on this journal page to get a better look.

I received a lovely little box in the mail on Dec. 31st from my good blog buddy, Jolene from I love the wrapping that she covered my little journal in. Mija, is a splanglish word. And because I'm from north of the border, I won't even go into the correct spelling of the word. It's a loving name bestowed on daughters but good friends and relatives use it too when addressing a loved one. I guess that makes me "loved." LOL!!

Here's the cover of the journal my daughter purchased for my birthday through Jolene. I love the crazy/cool collage details!

Signatures in this journal are all nestled in double sided paper. Jolene gives a lot of attention to details.

I love the exposed spine that reveals the famous (and extremely difficult for me to master) Coptic stitch. The various shades of waxed linen she uses compliment each other. You can view some of her other journals and some other awesome art at her daughter Jill's etsy shop. Go to to get an eyeful.

The journaling artventures continue! I'm not putting pressure on myself to work on my pages which may be why it's feeling very natural for me to open my book and write, glue, stamp, alter, etc. I must remember this if I want to truly make this my Winter Journal and a completed one at that!

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Last Minute Artventures

The art bug bit me on New Year's Eve! I immediately got to work on a birthday card for my brother and a winter journal when this quote slapped me in the face and I wasn't even looking for it! Perfect timing.

This table may not look very neat and orderly to you but this is it in it's best state. LOL! It was a Christmas gift from my son and daughter-in-law. No more taking up the kitchen table!

I was definitely multi-tasking on New Year's Eve. While making my brother a birthday card, I decided to prepare a winter journal to record my artventures. Again, words just came at me from nowhere! Well, there was this old magazine I'd been holding onto and I rediscovered it and these words and phrases came tumbling out waiting to jump into my journal! Conspiracy at it's best I tell ya!

I found a small journal with pre-painted pages in the corner of my art room waiting to be used. I added some words and my "Winter Journal" was born! I made a tape transfer with the quote which was featured at the top of this blog's entry. I could have easily glued it on but as I mentioned earlier, the art bug bit me and when this happens I just don't do things the usual way!

I found this stamp while looking for a birthday quote stamp. See how things work out? All I was supposed to make was a birthday card and I started on a journal as well because of "words" falling into place for me!

Here's my Winter Journal waiting to be filled with a little art and words. The cold months make me get cozy with pens, paint, paper and YARN - as you can see!

"HAPPY NEW YEAR" everyone! Whew, what an unusual 2009 I had. I found that the best way to say adios to 2009 was to spend the last few hours immersed in artventures. I pulled out a journal I'd set aside to record a few of my winter happenings and went to work at the new table my son Raymond and my daughter-in-law Rubi gave me for Christmas. I guess you could say this was a great way to "christened" the table. LOL!

Thanks for being frequent visitors during the past year. I appreciate your visits and love reading your comments. I hope to provide more artventures for you to read and see in 2010. Best wishes for a great year full of art, love and peace.