All posts by Maria G

I'm a multi-media artist and writer.

Paper clay bowl with painted mandala

Paper clay is so much fun to work with. I don’t know the difference between paper clay and air dry clay, but they are both easy to work with. I like to make little bowls and paint them. It’s actually relaxing and satisfying to paint funky patterns without pre-planning.

I use Plus paper clay:

paper clay bowl

I roll an amount that I think will be enough for a small bowl. I roll it with a baking pin that I usually use for my polymer clay. I try to get the thickness even by eyeing the clay since I don’t have clay “bars” that help to make an even thickness. But handmade doesn’t have to be perfect!

I bend the clay over an object that will make the flat bottom I want. In my case, I used the bottom of an empty Mod Podge bottle. The bowl dries about 24 hours depending on how hot or cold it is.

Above are some examples of recent bowls. I made a YouTube video of my latest bowl, and you can watch it HERE.

I have also been making “heart guardians” from epoxy clay (Apoxie Sculpt) attached to rocks, shells, or geodes. They have been popular in my etsy shop. Here are some I made.

It has been fun to experiment with clay lately. I haven’t painted as much, but everything goes in cycles. I like to go with the flow of the moment. It’s challenging to make something different. I feel a lot of resistance, but when I press through that, I really enjoy the process.

I have some new items in my etsy shop if you’re interested. You can check them out HERE.

Please make your own paper clay bowl. I know you’ll love it! 🙂 You can’t go wrong with the process.

Lots of love,

Maria

Be brave in the face of inner struggles

Be brave, “don’t listen to the inner critic” people say. It’s trite but true. No matter where you are in your artistic career, you’ll face new and daunting challenges. “I quit,” you say, “I can’t get my mojo back”. In the big scheme of things, a few days (months) of no creative urge don’t matter much.

I started selling paintings on eBay back in 2003, and when I look back, it has been a pretty wild ride from then to now. The urge to paint never went away, but I went through long periods of not knowing what to paint next. My mind was blank.

In comes the doodles and the testing of art supplies! (Thank God for that.) Back in the day, I committed to making some art every day, and I have pretty much stuck with it. I get antsy if I don’t make something artsy every day.

So I’ve painted abstracts, geometrics, funky figures, florals, aborigine-inspired art, portraits, spiritual “beings”, and through it all, I’ve made clay mosaics since 2008. I still have pictures but my earliest attempts were lost in a computer crash, but here are some from 2009.

I look back at my old art and realize how different my art is now, but I suppose the vibe is more or less the same.

The artist’s journey

As stated above, when you’re an artist you journey along with your creativity. I never know where it’s going to take me next, but lately, I’ve been painting funky florals. Who knew?

It makes the artistic path exciting. I made a YouTube video on how to paint a similar floral. Check it out HERE.

I have no idea where I’m going next. My mind has been blank for quite some time, but I was painting over an old painting and realized I had the beginnings of flowers, and the rest is history as they say.

Trust

Trust that your muse has your back. As you change and deepen as a person, so will your muse take you on the next leg of your art journey. You don’t need to know a hundred miles ahead, just the next step.

When you trust that everything is as it should be, your next step will be revealed. Don’t ever quit! All you do is prevent yourself from new artistic exploration. In the beginning, I wanted to paint like Marc Chagall. That never manifested but I added a few funky chickens (roosters) like his in my art now and then. 🙂

Marc Chagall painting

I get inspiration from all kinds of artists, but I feel better when I inspire myself. 🙂

Keep making your art! Don’t be afraid to explore. Doodle if nothing else works. I have doodled on packing paper, deli paper, napkins, printing paper, paper towels, and junk mail. You can make your own delicious paper to use in your paintings or art journal. I made a Mark Making video for you. Check it out HERE.

If you are in the market for floral art, I have some for you in my etsy shop. 🙂 Earth and Faery.

Also some nature spirits in clay, and some sewn songbird sculptures that are new. Next, I’m going to make another clay chicken! I’m almost out, and Easter is coming fast.

Happy creating, and lots of love. I’d love to hear from you.

Maria

New year, new inspiration, still old me

New year, can you believe it? We begin with a bang thinking that this year will be different. We’re going to shed all bad habits, take up good ones and finally break through THAT resistance, and vanquish all procrastination.

I have news, we are still who we were on December 31, but I can see the lure of a fresh year ahead. I entered the Goodreads reading challenge to read 55 books this year. I read a lot so I will probably make it, but maybe that is the optimism of a new year speaking? We shall see…

I did start the year with a creative bang, so at least I have that going for me. Art is in my blood, and the more art I make, the more anchored the “habit” gets. It is a good, nourishing habit!

Make art get into your blood! Take a daring step to incorporating an art habit into your daily life this year. It’s amazingly rewarding. If you are reading this blog, you are an artist. This year, give your art a great deal of love and attention. It will make you so happy.

Here are some things I made in January. These figures are elves /nature spirits / fairies, whatever you want to call them.

I made some floral paintings as well, and a funky bird. You can check out these items in my etsy shop Earth and Faery.

I have a gift for you! Yesterday I made a how-to YouTube video on painting a funky floral like the one above.

YouTube video link

One of my most popular YT videos is the on how to make a spirit doll. You can easily make one and stuff some intentions and affirmations into it. I write them down on pieces of paper, and with the focus on my intentions, I incorporate them into the doll. So much fun! Check out that VIDEO here.

For art journaling or plain writing journaling, I have a simple tutorial on how to make your own journal. All you need is willingness, some art supplies like watercolor paper and a few paints, and some string or embroidery floss. Check that blog post HERE.

I’d love to hear what you’re working on or what difficulties you have with making art into a consistent practice. Leave a comment below or write to me at maria@mariagreene.org.

Have the best year ever, and lots of love and glitter sprinkles! 🙂

Maria

A month of Mixed media madness

A month that flew by and I felt as if I was out of breath at the speed of time! It’s so important to make some art to keep sane. 🙂 Things have been changing for me. I seem to lean toward sculpting lately. In the past, I worked in my art journal pretty much every day, but I don’t as much now.

I try to go with the flow. Sculpting has been much more of a challenge since I never had any formal training. However, I like to take online courses, so I’ve learned the basics that way. And, there’s always YouTube…

I made this wood and clay mystery bird. I used polymer clay for the body, and I liked the way it came out. I’m going to make more of these kinds of strange figures. 🙂

A month of mixed media madness

Then I made cats!

A month of mixed media madness
A month of mixed media madness, mermaid cat

The mermaid cat is all fabric that is gessoed and painted, except for the wand and the base. I used a Susan Barmore pattern that I found on etsy, and it came out ok.

So my inspiration has been more with 3D objects than with 2D. I bring out my canvases but the flow has not been there much. I did however make one mixed media piece on a cradled wood panel.

Mixed media madness!

She can’t help having a big nose like that…

It was fun to make.

I haven’t made a video tutorial this month, but I came across Ina Solsbery on YouTube, and her found objects sculptures are awesome. She also makes some art journal spreads. Here’s one made with pretty napkins and paint.

Napkin collage with Ina Solsbery

YouTube and Pinterest are great sources of inspiration. Go there if you want to get ideas.

I made a simple spirit doll using one of my painted clay faces as a focal point a while back. If you missed it, you can check it out: Spirit doll tutorial.

I was looking through my old videos and this totally RAW art journal spread I made in 2015 is an inspiration that you can still make art even if you have no idea where to start. Check it out.

If you missed my last blog post with the Funky Bird tutorial, you can read it HERE.

The holidays are almost here (gasp.) I have lots of cute things in my etsy shop for those looking for a unique gift: Earth and Faery

I wish you loads of inspiration!!

Maria

A month of mixed media madness

Make a funky bird ornament

Make a funky bird, friends! I just posted a new YouTube video on how to make this fun and quirky bird (owl?) A fantasy bird maybe? Click HERE.

Make a funky bird

I have been pretty busy in my studio this month, but I’ve focused more on sewing than paint and paper. I made a couple of songbirds. They are so much fun to make, but now I have to put away all the sewing paraphernalia.

I got a couple of paintings made as well.

I think I mentioned in my last blog post that I’m re-issuing the old historical romances I wrote in the 90s. One is set to come out on September 1, The Undoing of Lord Saville, and the other is already out, TheTaming of Viscount Perth. If you like humorous sweet romance, you might like these. Only on Kindle at this time.

I hope you’re having some joyous time in your studio during these crazy times. I love going into my studio and make happy things. Nothing better to keep the positive vibes up! Well, meditation really helps too.

Lots of love, Maria

P.S. My etsy shop is shock full of fun and colorful items. Earth and Faery.

Why I love polymer clay

Why I love polymer clay? There are so many reasons, and I will try to mention some here.

Back in the day I read a book by Laurie Mika titled, Mixed Media Mosaics, and I was hooked! I made tray-loads of clay tiles and painted them. I adhered them to any flat surface that would hold them.

That’s how it all started, and then I began making 3D items, and even ventured into some clay jewelry (not many, but fun.)

Now I have branched out from polymer clay to epoxy clay for some items, and I like the challenge of “mastering” a new material.

Polymer clay is such a forgiving and easy-to-work-with material.

All you need is some elbow grease to soften the clay, a few simple tools, and an oven to bake it.

It became a fun challenge to look for things I could imprint on the clay, from vintage buttons to jewelry charms, rubber stamps, and things like bubble wrap and other trash items.

Here are a couple of examples of my recent clay work:

Polymer clay wall art where I used one of my painted faces.
Epoxy clay work, cosplay forest crown
Polymer clay hand sculpted spirit doll faces
Polymer clay faces for sale

I have branched out with my clay faces to include “elementals.” I have a fire elemental at the top of the picture, and also a Frost Queen, which is new to me.

Yesterday I got a wild hair and decided to make a video for my YouTube channel. Octopus eye on a key… hmm, sounds weird right? You can view it here:

Polymer clay octopus with eye on an old key

So I’ve moved from flat surfaces to explore more 3D styles, but mosaics will never get boring to make. Right now, people are into clay faces and making spirit dolls. Everything seems to go in cycles.

If you’re interested in spirit dolls, you can watch my video on how to make one. The link is in my PREVIOUS blog post.

I wish you lots of happy creativity, and if you’re in the market for a quirky gift, please check out my etsy shop, Earth and Faery.

Love, Maria