Category Archives: process

I had a discussion yesterday

I had a discussion yesterday about art. Some days I paint perfectly recognizable art projects, like birds and things in nature (for example.)

I had a discussion
random bird

Sometimes I make random art, which is so easy, but the pages don’t necessarily mean anything to me. The person I was talking to swore by random art.

It’s interesting because the art journal pages I don’t care much about get the most “likes” on Instagram and Facebook. Not that the likes matter much, but they are an indication of what speaks to the viewers.

People like random “loose” renderings. I feel very ambivalent about that kind of art. It doesn’t SAY anything to me. I like a good story or something recognizable.

Not that random stuff is ugly. Many times I’m drawn to the energy, and that’s enough.

I had a discussion
The other woman

To stretch myself I’m going to make art that doesn’t always sit well with me and see where it leads. If it’s easy, it flows, but there are no rules. Easy doesn’t mean fulfilling.

I had a sdiscussion
Flying into the sunset

I do like abstracts as long as they draw me in. I’m very ambivalent about my own art at this point. These art journal spreads have been painted, mostly, with a paint on a credit card edge. I like the texture, but I also like texture on house walls. 🙂

When is it decorative, and when is it art? Well, it doesn’t have to be labeled, but it’s an interesting question .

One time I painted walls that had a leather faux finish. It was a lot of fun experimentation to get it just right.  In the end, it was a satisfying project. I wouldn’t call that art, but it needed skills.

I had a discussion
Totally random

The above spread was totally random painted with a credit card, except for the art picture that I glued on top.  I can’t say that I like it, but it is what it is.

I had a discussion
Random art

What is your opinion? What kind of art makes your breath catch in your throat and your eyes widen?

For me, I would say it’s some kind of mastery that shines through the art.  I’ll never forget when I first saw some real Renoirs at the Met in New York. The light he had mastered! I’d say it was an awesome immersion experience.

As it is, we live one day at a time, and any creative endeavor brings us closer to the heart of who we are. Each piece of art brings us closer to more deeply express the essence.

I aspire to inspire, one step at a time. 🙂 What about your art?

Lots of love,

Maria

P.S. I have an e-course, FLY YOUR SOUL, coming up shortly.  No link as yet, but I will add one once the offer is available.  Meanwhile, you can always join my newsletter: LINK HERE.

Polymer clay mosaic tutorial.

People have been asking me about more polymer clay mosaic tutorials.

I have posted before on how to paint the baked tiles, and there is a YouTube video on how to paint them as well.  CLICK HERE.

Here are some pictures on how to put the mosaic together with the finished tiles. Since this is a star box I had to fiddle with and cut some of the tiles, which is tricky since they break pretty easily.  It’s much easier to make a square or rectangular design.

polymer clay mosaic tiles
painted tiles ready to be assembled
star box lid
Box top painted black

I paint the lids black to hide any gaps between the tiles. If the gap is too big I place some glue and drop some seed beads to fill the gap.

layout
layout, one tile at a time
finished design
Tiles fitted and glued down

Here you can see some blue seed beads in the top two corners. The tiles were too big to cut for size.  Seed beads are great and they lend some sparkle to the project as well. Choose a color that matches the main color(s) of your design.

painting the box
Painting the box

I painted the box on the outside with acrylic paints.

gold interior
spray painted interior

I spray paint the bottom and the interior with gold paint before I paint the rest.

finished box
finished box

What do you think? Pretty colorful. I had fun making this, and so many others.

I made a mirror that promotes PEACE!  I thought that was a worthy thing to be reminded of while looking into a mirror.  Peace begins within and it’s a choice. I even had a Buddha charm I embedded in the clay and baked.

peace mirror
Peace mirror

The mirror part distracts from the frame in the bright outdoors, but there it is. Polymer clay is so versatile you can make almost any design.

I use old buttons, rubber stamps, charms, found objects, and lettering to imprint the tiles. You can use anything that makes a nice imprint.

If you enjoyed the tutorial, please leave a comment.

Please visit my new etsy shop, Earth and Faery.

Have a great creative week!

xo

Maria

Stop beating yourself up!

Sometimes we set impossible goals, or goals we’re not quite ready for, and then we beat ourselves up for not accomplishing them.

It’s good to have a schedule or a plan and to stick with it, but if it’s totally overwhelming it’s going to be counter-productive.

If you discard a goal and feel bad about it, know that today is a new day. How can you modify the goal and feel more at ease? Life is not a race and what others accomplish has nothing to do with you.

I made a goal at the beginning of 2016 to offer something free or paid art-wise to my artist friends.  I followed through until June and when six months were almost up I realized so many things had been counter productive.

I can just give up or beat myself up about it ad nauseam, but that is even more counter productive.

I learned something along the way about the process and that is priceless. If I hadn’t taken the action I would still be in the dark.

It’s not about discarding the dream, but to make it more streamlined to who YOU are, not what people might expect.  Or even bigger still: what you expect of yourself.

Listen to your own drumbeat.

drum beat
The beat of your own drum.

I have always been a doer and sometimes I forget to listen to my own drum. But it’s getting better. Nowadays, I don’t get as far away from myself as I used to do, and I truly want to offer the best me to the world.

I don’t compromise while creating my art, but how I bring it out to the world the best way is still somewhat of a mystery. All I can do is keep exploring and see what responses I get.

One thing I do know. Your dream is important and when you talk about it, you might help someone on the other side of the world as you pursue your own process.

I often get comments like, “oh, I really needed to hear that today, thank you.” Then, what I thought was  a half-assed blog post or art offering, means something. It’s verification that I’m headed in the right direction, and that I inspire others.

That makes every step worth it.

To find the right way sometimes takes many tries, but there are no failures, only experiences.

Believe enough in yourself and keep the dream alive. There really is no other alternative!

So, STOP beating yourself up from now on. 🙂

xo

Maria

P.S. If you’d like to try one of my evergreen art journaling e-courses, go HERE to check them out.

Andrea Schroeder on self love.

I have never met Andrea Schroeder in “real” life but maybe I have met her in my dreams.  She is the creator of the Creative Dream Incubator and the Creative Dream Circle.  A Canadian with a vision that goes beyond the usual “fluff” we so often see on social media.

She’s an artist but also someone who delves deeply into the problems of being human.  She helps you expand the possibilities of being a life artist. I was intrigued by her unique take on common problems / solutions so I promptly joined her Creative Dream Circle.

And I have had fun with it ever since! It’s full of creative courses and other awesome offerings. The yearly  membership will not be enough to go through all the material, but I look forward to a long exploration on her site.

I will offer you links to her offerings at the end of this post.  This excerpt is from her free guided journal + free coloring book.

What it is: 15 pages of journal prompts and hand-drawn mandala coloring pages to explore and color.

She writes:

It’s a beam of creativity & love, from my heart to yours.

This book is designed for people who want to lead creatively abundant lives — and do ‘impossible’ things, with ease & joy, every day.

Filled with journaling prompts, unique energy alchemy processes and hand-drawn healing mandala coloring pages, this book will lead you through the process of learning more about your (amazing!) self.

There is magic in this book.

You activate that magic by playing with it.

Play in whatever way you want to play. Use whatever art supplies are fun for you: glitter pens, crayons, collage, etc.  There are no rules here.

The journaling prompts are tiny little diving boards, for you to dive off of into your own adventure – go off on tangents and explore whatever thoughts come up in the process.  They will lead you to amazing places.

The healing power of the mandala coloring pages is activated when you color them in, lighting them up with your unique creative expression and ideas.  (If you want to explore mandalas further and draw your own, I’ve got an easy-peasy anyone-can-do.

My hope is that this book helps you to fall more deeply in love with your amazing self.

mandala coloring pagesmandala coloring pagesmandala coloring pages

To download this free inspirational how-to go HERE.

You don’t have to be an artist to create these mandalas.

To find a full length course of painting mandalas or to find out about the Creative Dream Circle go HERE.

All artists and LIFE artists need a shot of inspiration so I have added the link below.  It’s really worth looking into.

To give Your Dream Wings, check out this full length e-course that is FREE!!!  Click HERE.

You can also find Andrea on Facebook HERE.

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Andrea Schroeder

We all need inspiration sometimes, and she’s great at offering new views and possibilities, and I like her laid back style.

I wish you a happy, creative weekend!

xo

Maria

P.S. If you’re looking for a unique gift please check my etsy shop HERE.

 

Too little time

Yes, there is too little time to attend to all the art e-courses I signed up for this spring. Some of them run weekly for a long time, and others are short-term courses.  How do you manage those classes?

I love them all, but I don’t feel good when I fall behind and let some of the classes slip because other things, like “life” get in the way of my fun.

What makes it so fun is that I can explore other artists’ visions of what they practice and how they see life. It’s a great ongoing exploration.

Some of courses are waaay too long and then I have to figure out which classes to pursue of the offering. As with anything else, we have preferences.

Art is never a BAD practice even if the subject does not thrill you. It is always a learning experience and a new way of looking at things.

If time is short, make a decision to paint X amount of minutes every day and stick with it. That is the answer to “too little time.” It’s amazing how much you can accomplish in as little as 15 minutes a day.

I enjoy that there are e-courses available about all styles of art, and artists.  I don’t even have to leave my house.

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Abstract exploration.

This was inspired by some abstract tutorial I found online.

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Flower mandala.

I had seen flower mandalas online, and also classes on painting mandalas, so I wanted to try my own.  My backyard does not have an abundance of flowers but these came from there. It was fun to make.

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Awful still lives I painted in one course.

I definitely don’t like painting still lives…

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Silly portrait of myself

I had never tried a self-portrait. I don’t care much for the exercise, but it was challenging.  The things in the background are paint tubes.  I think I mostly used colored pencils for this portrait. My hair is short now.

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Upside down cat.

We were supposed to paint something upside down so I used a picture of my cat with his head upside down, and then collaged a couple of hands below with a fish.

My mom used to say that when cats sleep with their heads upside down it’s going to rain… I haven’t seen any evidence of that, but she lived closer to nature.

What new things are you trying? Are you involved in any art e-courses this spring? I think it’s worth the effort.

Have a great, creative weekend!!

xo

Maria

P.S. You can always try my art journaling tutorial for free if you sign up for my newsletter. 🙂  Click image in the top right hand corner of this page.

Doubt is what holds us back.

I have no doubt that doubt holds us back from achieving our dreams.

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doubt and fear

Dreams can be elusive, and you might have a vague idea of what your dream is about. If you have an inkling that is GOOD! So many people don’t have any idea of what their dream or passion is.

Achieving a dream can be fraught with doubt and other pitfalls, but the easy part is to JUST START where you are now.  Say you want to be an accomplished painter and you know you feel great when you paint, but something holds you back.

Fear create doubts. “I’m not good enough.”  “I can’t paint well enough.” “I never went to art school so I can’t be a painter.” “People don’t approve.”

Sounds familiar?  But who cares?  When you start something, you might not have any idea of where you’re going, but buy some art supplies that appeal to you. (Most likely, you already have some dusty stuff hidden in the closet.) Dust that stuff off and bring it back out.

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Despite the doubt, just start.

Once you have started and made a commitment to pursue your desire to become a painter, you will find that the next step on the journey will reveal itself.  It’s as if starting sets off some kind of unseen magic.

You will make some ugly art and you will make some great art, and the PROCESS is what makes things interesting.  Everything you do will teach you to take the next step. Art, by the way, is an endless exploration so even if you are a painter for 60 years, you still have more to explore. That is a great thing!

Other passions might not have that longevity factor.

You will be working on yourself as you follow your passion.  Everything we dare to do helps us to discover new depths and gifts within ourselves. That is another gift that happens when we dare to step out of our comfort zone and try something new.

By all means, take some painting courses to learn technique, but know that the true creativity is inside of you. Don’t become a copy cat. Be brave enough to forge your own path even if there is lots of resistance. That might never go away, but you can make friends with it and DO IT ANYWAY.

Resistance meets me every morning in the studio, but what the heck is new with that?  Nada.  Old record of fear keeps playing in my mind, but action takes me beyond that and into the space where magic happens, or not. I still gain experience that is valuable.

How to find your passion if you don’t know what it is.

Think back to when you were a kid. What did you do then that you enjoyed? I enjoyed crafts (paperdolls,) reading, and the outdoors.  Art making has traveled like a red thread through my life.

Think of some job you liked or had a knack for. It might have been a summer job when you were young.

What do you have a knack for?  Writing? Numbers? Decorating?  What do your friends ask you to help them with if anything?  Do they often say, “You’re so good at this.”

If you like more internal things like reading, maybe you can try writing a book.  What if you like intuition and meditation, all internal experiences? Maybe you can teach that to people.  What if you love to cook? Maybe you can specialize in some type of cooking and write a cook book?

The possibilities are endless.

Maybe you like to speak, to lead, to teach. The online world is filled with endless possibility to make your mark and help many people.

Find your passion, START doing it.  Take one step at a time, and when hurdles show up (as they will,) deal with them one at a time. You may have to do some internal work to get past feelings to inadequacy but in the long run, you will stand VICTORIOUS, and who knows, your paintings might be worth millions (once you’re dead, haha.) It’s all in the process, baby.

Kick the doubt to the curb and tell it stay the hell away!

xo

Maria

P.S. I have an art and intuition ecourse coming up. Art as Oracle 2 starts on June 7. You can read all about it HERE.