Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Presenting: "Hanging Out"!

Today is the entry deadline, so just to leave myself time for complications, I went ahead and entered it last night. He's officially done for now. I would have liked more time to make adjustments and there is one area I'd like to change...but I can't do anything to it now until I hear back from the CPSA. I won't hear anything until the beginning of May. If I do not get into the exhibition...then you'll see this little guy getting a makeover.

I received a postcard from my local Alliance of the Arts reminding me that their Annual 2D/3D All Florida Juried Exhibition is coming up. The entry deadline for that is April 20th. I was hoping their's would be a little later, so that if I didn't get into the CPSA Exhibition, I could enter this same piece into the local Alliance Exhibition. Unfortunately, that won't happen. I do have one piece to enter, but may try to work on a second entry if I can complete something between now and then. I got into the local show last year with an untitled piece.

There is also a juried exhibition coming up for the Boca Raton Museum of Art. That deadline is April 22nd...so I'll enter the untitled piece that I entered into last years local exhibition. So that makes 3 exhibitions I will be entering into. Wish me luck that I get into at least one of them!

In between that, I also need to finish Biondina, and start the portrait of my cousins for my aunt in North Carolina. Artwork may move more slowly for a while as I made the mistake of telling one of my friends that I wanted to tone my upper arms for my wedding dress. She now has me going to her house 3 nights a week to workout on P90X, and expects me to work out at home on my own too! Aside from that, I also picked up a new hobby. I am going to try to turn my black thumb green, and see how long I can keep up gardening. I started a gardening blog to keep me motivated on that too. That idea seems to be working well for my artwork, so I'm sure it will work for the gardening too. That blog can be found here. I can't wait to get home and see how my plants are doing now that we've had a full day of sunshine after a day of rain and a day of gloom!

Friday, March 27, 2009

Can you tell which one is the real thing??

I ordered prints of two of my portraits from the Frame & Art Gallery in Ft. Myers, and got a call today that they were ready to be picked up. So after battling traffic on I-75, and having to get off at an exit with a Publix so I could go inside and let my car cool off while I bought a gallon of water to pour into it, I managed to make it to the gallery 15 minutes before they closed.

This is the first time I've ever had professional prints made of my work. The reason I did it this time, was because I am so attached to these two portraits, that I didn't want to part with the originals! I feel that these two are my best work so far, and really wanted to keep them all for myself. But a piece of me really wanted to give them to my brother. They're his kids....they're better than anything else I have given him, and he has everything I ever gave him hanging up in his house. So I thought, well...I'll get the next best thing. I'll have Giclee (pronounced zee-clay) prints made for myself, and give him the originals. It took me several months to talk myself into this decision. lol. So since I'd like to go up and visit him soon, I wanted to have them ready, so I went on a mission to find a place to print in my area. I was almost going to go with this place in Naples, until I read some fine print on their website that said that they held all rights to the image. What? It's MY drawing...my artwork...you don't hold any rights to it. So I continued my search until I found the Frame & Art Gallery owned by Michael Damico. Here is a link to Michael's blog. He is a great artist. And who better to trust your artwork with, than another artist?

Thanks to Michael and Nick from the Frame & Art Gallery, I have beautiful prints of my drawings. I will definitely go there again. The prints are gorgeous...and Michael and Nick were really nice. I spoke to Michael on the phone a couple of times before going in there, and he was always pleasant and helpful.

Can you tell which ones are the prints and which ones are the originals??

Wednesday, March 25, 2009


So I ended up taking the whole day off today. I went to my dentist appointment this morning, and then came home to catch up on everything. I did 3 loads of laundry....wait, I just remembered there's a load in the washer that needs to go in the dryer, so that's 4 loads. I ran a load of dishes through the dishwasher. I cleaned half the kitchen. (The island is still a mess, but I ran out of time, lol). I cleaned out my garden in the backyard, and started an herb greenhouse kit and a windowsill flower garden. And I worked on the squirrel.

I'm on a new kick all of a sudden. I want to start growing plants. I've always had a black thumb. But I have been keeping a Lucky Bamboo alive for a year and a half, even saved it from dying when one of the stalks turned yellow. (I was so proud of myself! lol) I also have a Seagrape seedling that another co-worker gave me 5 months ago that I have managed to keep alive. I've watched 5 new leaves grow since she gave it to me. So now all of a sudden, I want more! lol. So she is bringing me a Confederate Rose tomorrow which she has rooted from her own plant. Another co-worker is bringing me a Banana Tree "pup"...from his tree. That's what he called it, I don't know if that's the correct name for it. And I am going to try to revive the dying plants in my backyard. They all died back because of the long winter we've had, but I'm pretty sure they'll all come right back. They did last year anyway. The problem is, they were never maintained to begin with, so they're not growing well. But I hope to research them and fix them. I've started a gardening blog, www.gardeningamateur.blogspot.com...I figure it will keep me motivated, the same as this blog keeps me motivated to work on my artwork. Besides, the more pretty flowers I have, the more art references I have! :)

Sunday, March 22, 2009

We're getting there!

So here is where I'm at now. I don't like all the white space on the bottom, but my fiance thinks it makes it look more 3D. So, what I'm going to do is finish the whole thing, and then if I still don't like it, I'll erase and add some leaves here and/or there.

I must admit, I'm getting awfully tired of the color scheme. lol. I am dying to work on another portrait, but since the deadline for this guy is less than 10 days away, I can't stop to work on anything else. I am contemplating taking a day off work this week to work on him. I have a dentist appt. on Wednesday, so I'm thinking...maybe I might want to just stay home that day. Go to my appointment at 9am, and come home and spend the day working on this. But I probably won't. I'm one of those...hmmmm....I wouldn't say workaholic, but I'm one of those people who doesn't take time off work unless they need it. But once in a great while, I'll take a day, just one day, to relax by myself....and it is usually only when I have to take time off for something else, like a dr or dentist appt. lol. So we'll see. I always make the decision at the last minute, too.

I'm thinking now that maybe watercolor pencils would have been better for the leaves and sky. I bet that would have made this go so much quicker. Dangit, why didn't I think of that sooner?!

Well I do have another picture of this little squirrel that I can experiment with watercolor pencils on. I do have another exhibition that I want to enter coming up with a May deadline. Maybe I'll try that one out. We'll see.

On the wedding side of things....I bought my dress yesterday! Me and my mom went to Alfred Angelo yesterday. I had already had my dress in mind cause I found it online several weeks ago. So we tried on that one, plus 4 others. I had selected about 8, but we didn't try them all on because I was loving all of them. But I had some in satin and some in lace, and the saleslady told me if I tried on the first one again, it will be a decision maker. So I tried it on again, and I was still in love with it. It was still my first choice, so I decided to go with it. It was absolutely perfect. It made me feel good, gave me the figure I wanted, it was comfortable, I walked in it, sat it in, it didn't bunch or move at all...she didn't even have to pin it or anything. It just was a perfect fit. The only thing it will need is a bustle and a hem. (That's if I don't lose any weight, of course. But if I do, it'll only be about 5 pounds. I don't really want to lose, though, I want to tone). I didn't want to take the dress off! We actually left the store without the dress, planning to buy it online because I had found it on Ebay. But we got out to the car, and were standing in the parking lot talking about it, and figured out that I would only be saving $60 by getting the dress on Ebay...plus it would be a lot riskier. And I had a $75 off coupon that expired right after my appt. So we walked right back into the store, and bought the dress...and the veil and tiara and bra and slip. lol. So that part of my wedding planning is done. I'd love to show you which dress I bought, but since my fiance can't see it, and he WANTS to, I'm not risking putting it up on the blog. lol.

While we were at the bridal shop, we also picked out a possible bridesmaid dress, and a definate flower girl dress. I can't wait to get my flower girls in there to try it on! The dress is beautiful, and it goes really well with the appliques on my dress. PLUS, the saleslady is going to see if she can order the applique on my dress for me, so that I can sew it onto my ringbearer pillow...to tie it in with the design on my dress. So that's cool, cause then my ringbearer will be tied in with the rest of us.

So that's all for now. I will continue to work on Mr. Squirrel and post more later in the week. See you soon!

Sunday, March 15, 2009

More on the Squirrel

Well I thought I would get more of this done during the week, but I didn't. My fiance and I went out to dinner Monday night to scout a restaurant that I stumbled across as a possible location for our wedding. It was pretty nice, so we're going to keep that in mind, but we're still going to keep looking.

On Thursday, me and my best friend went to see the New Kids on the Block. LOL. I have to tell you, we really didn't think we would enjoy it. We haven't listened to them in 17 or 18 years. (Wow that makes me feel old!) The music is the complete opposite of what we listen to now. I tried to listen to their music at work the day of the show, and I really couldn't get into it. And I couldn't remember any of the words. But when I was 10-11yrs old, I was a superfan! I had everything; pillows, the sheet set, the bath towel set, the beach towel, a hat, t-shirts, I even had a Joe doll! lol. (I still have him, he's in the attic with Ken and Barbie. I also still have the pillow and the hat, but I have no idea what happened to the other stuff).

Anyway, we figured even though we didn't think we'd like it, we had to go because we never got to when we were kids. It was like we had to fulfill this childhood dream. lol. We didn't care about it so much that we arrived to the show an hour and a half late, I bought the cheapest tickets so we were in the very last row of the upper level. We even expected that we would only watch a few songs and then duck out before the end. But when we got in there...our whole attitude changed. We realized, once a fan, always a fan. lol. We felt like we were 12 again. They put on a great show, that had us totally enjoying ourselves. Laughing at ourselves. And while there, even the words came flooding back to me. It must have been the atmosphere, the spirit of the place. There were a lot more people there than I expected there to be. The show reignited my love for NKOTB, and my crush on Donnie Wahlberg. (I always did have a thing for the "bad boys"). I bought a t-shirt that says "Property of Donnie Wahlberg, NKOTB". I took tons of pictures. And we decided that next time they come, we're there, on time, and we're not getting the cheap tickets.

Here's a video clip of the show, followed by a couple of pictures. I have clips of complete songs, but the site has a video size limit of 100mb...and all the full songs were 400mb. Sorry about the bad sound quality, but this was taken on my digital camera...which I doubt was made for such loud sound. lol.

And for the record....NKOTB was the ONLY boy band I have ever been into! lol. And I liked that Donnie wore a Pantera shirt and a Misfits shirt. Oh wait, I have one more picture to add:

I totally agree with this sheet. lol. You can click on the pictures to see them full size. Just use your browsers back button to get back to the blog.

Friday night I had to take my doggie to the vet. She had potty problems due to a bacteria in her intestines. She got a shot, and 3 medications to take...and she seems to be doing better now. I spent all day yesterday filling out job applications. I'm trying to get a second job to help pay for my wedding. So I only worked on the squirrel Tuesday, Wednesday and today. Those leaves are slow going. But we're getting there. More to come soon. Hopefully this week will be less busy than the last. Talk to you soon!

Monday, March 9, 2009

Squirrel and Biondina Updates

Well I didn't finish Biondina over the weekend. I had a busier weekend than I had planned. My fiance and I went to lunch on Saturday, and from there, we figured we'd drive around and scout good wedding ceremony locations. It was a total bust, and I ended up depressed that we live in such a crappy area. Beautiful Florida...it's all an illusion! Not one pretty garden or pretty landscaped area at a park in my city or the neighboring city. The Rose Garden is nothing but sticks and thorny twigs, the Fragrence Garden is brownish green, with no fragrant flowers, and over near the wedding gazebo, they have 3 large thick beams of wood sticking up out of the ground with hoses hanging on it. Like i want that in my wedding pictures! And they obviously aren't using them, because otherwise the area would be greener, not brown-green. Logic would tell you that since we just came out of a long winter, it's too early for things to be pretty. BUT, when I was driving down 41 on my way home from the non-existant Fragrence Garden, I noticed beautiful lush green grass, beautiful flowering trees with bright flowers on them, all in the MEDIAN. How sad is it that we take better care of our medians than we do our parks and gardens?? I'm half tempted to have my ceremony in the median of US 41.

Anyway, so then on Sunday, I went to watch my aunt and cousin get baptized, and then went straight from the church to a wedding expo with my mom. So I didn't get much work done on either of my drawings. But I did manage some, so here are the updates.

Biondina is coming along nicely. Lots more work to do, though. I lost some of the likeness in her face along the line, so I need to go back in and fix that. And right now I've got her eyes blue, but don't worry they won't stay that way. (In case I never mentioned it, you can always click on the pictures in my posts to view them larger.)

And then there's the squirrel. I worked on it a bit on Saturday morning, before we got moving for the day, and a little after work today. You can see I'm beginning to get a bit of depth in there with the leaves. The bright area in the middle there is finished. So that's pretty much what the whole thing will look like when it's complete.Now that it stays light out later in the evening, I will have a bit of daylight left when I come home from work. I will be able to work on this a bit during the week, instead of always waiting for the weekends. So more to come later this week, stay tuned! :)

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Squirrel Update, and New Work in Progress

I worked a bit more on the squirrel last weekend, but since the engagement, I can't seem to keep focused on anything but wedding plans. lol. It's not even for another year, no date set yet, but it's all I can think about anymore. lol. So I kept forgetting to post this poor little guy. But he's here now. He's coming along....very very slowly. It's tedious work, but so far I'm pretty happy with how it's turning out. I think I may take out some of the sky....make it so that less sky shows through the leaves. He has to be finished by the end of the month. I hope I can make the deadline!

I had some time tonight while my fiance went to play cards with his friends, so I thought I'd start a new project. (I don't like to work on things without daylight, so it's only a start). This is for the Monthly Portrait Challenge on Wetcanvas. It's an Old Master Study...."Biondina" by Lord Frederick Leighton. A photo of the original painting can be seen here. My study is on 9x12 Burgandy Colourfix paper, which I will cut down to 8x10 to fit in my portfolio book once it's complete. I will try to finish it this weekend. So stay tuned.... :)