I'll be teaching at next years first annual JOURNALFEST put on by the talented duo, Teesha and Tracy Moore. This is going to be a very special event and I can't wait to see the assorted collection of folks who'll be turning out. (I'll be offering a class called Impulse Collage focusing specifically on how I like to create forms and structure and layering techniques by hand.)
Teesha has been supporting artist for decades and continues the trend not only through her events but on her blog too. This picture is from a great little feature where she shows how she made journals out of cereal boxes and cardboard! So clever. So check this out for some great ideas. And click here to keep a look out for the JOURNALFEST lineup. (it probably won't go live for a month or so- hang in there.)
In between shopping bliss being back in the states I've been working on Holiday for 2009. I've been enjoying the rootsy look and feel of people here in Ashland and the contrast from Belize. It's worked it's way into some of the new designs like this one. I am such a shopper and have been buying up all sorts of frou frou-ness that I don't neeeeeeed. But so looooooove to have around me right now. Things like oils and lotion, perfume (by A Beautiful Life) and (the best) incense. I'm freakin out people! That's what six months of Belizean grocery stores will do to you.
And a friend gave me incredible jewelry from local Ashland Artists at Liquid Fire Mantra. Yep I got those earing's on the left!!! They say receive in Sanskrit. (and I was shocked to see a very special old friend modeling them- small world! Ms. Isis looking beautiful as ever.) And look at their wild ear pieces! So beautiful.
Thank you to everyone who wrote to me yesterday. I actually feel a little silly for posting my reaction publicly. But I appreciate the support and it helped me get it off my chest. Moving on though and back at the drawing board. This lil' lady is my new bird catcher and part of a new love affair I'm having with color. Suddenly I am becoming interested in color in more subtle ways. I remember this article about a master gardener and the magazine asked her how she achieved such beautiful colors and moods. She said that when she began she use to put a lot of contrasting colors together in her gardens. But that slowly over time she learned that subtle transitions created a more soothing as well as more powerful impact. I have always remembered this article (not the name though) and the past few weeks the ideas she spoke about have been haunting me. So I too am playing around with subtle transitions (at least more subtle for me). Doing more painting in Belize is helping me with some foundation skills that I needed brushing up on. The process is so much more internal and lengthy but I can feel it's impact on me even when I jump back on the computer. So that's what I'm up to on my trip here in the states. I'm already looking forward to being back in Belize next week but not until I've gotten a great big dose of designing in.
(PAPAYA! designs on the left knock offs to the right.) I've been debating sharing this or not but I feel since most of you are artists and designers that this is good for us all to see. I have always assumed that fellow artists and designers would have a mutual understanding and respect for the creative process. But we are learning that isn't always the case. I have always maintained a "there's-enough-for-everyone" mentality. And to squabble about where inspiration arises from seems a waste of time. But today I am seeing what I have heard about thanks to people looking out for us in the UK. The second company to knock off my designs. I haven't even seen them all yet (there's more! and yes they also have glitter details & a sleeve) but I'm shocked to see a professional company who employs designers and works in the same industry as we do would be so blatant for what must only be a buck.
The part that gets my panties in a bunch is that when we began PAPAYA! faced a lot of criticism. In some ways we where before our time and people said we would never make it with our weirdo designs and mixed media feel. Some asked me what drugs I was on while working trade shows. The offenses where there- but we believed in what we where offering (and still do.) I guess for a company to now profit from the path we've laid upsets me. Where where they when we had to educate the public (and the buyers) about art for arts sake and that paper companies needn't follow the traditional format? That people can connect with imagery for the sake of impact etc. And where where they when we lived in a tiny apartment sleeping between boxes of inventory and staying up all night for years designing hundreds of images and glittering by hand until we couldn't see anymore with nothing more than elbow greese?
But regardless of where they where. They are here now. Lets keep our fingers crossed that there won't be gobbs of designers with hungry mitts in the future.
We're about to pee our pants here in the studio. We've been trying to get this image ready for print and we have so many funny comments we can't decide. Plus so many are a bit edgy for us. But hey. Who cares right. We needed to enlist some suggestions and reactions from you guys.
Here's some ideas we've had so far:
"Don't worry girl...We always knew he was an ass."
"She gave up on finding Prince Charming...But at least now she found her ass."
Don't worry girl...Everyone's dealt with a jack ass."
"Ummm...girl he was an Ass Face!"
"In dreams and in love there are no impossibilities." --Janos Arnay
(Photo taken in Talent, OR) I'm in the states again and i've been overdosing on coffee ALREADY. But being back in the PaPaYa! buzz feels really, really good. So many new projects and excitement right now and I getting the collective energy of the studio feels great. I'm planning on milling over back issues of Domino Magazines while journaling my heart out to the political hubub tonight. Wishing you all a happy inauguration day!
If it wasn't obvious by now then I suppose I can out myself and say YES. Yes it's true. I fell in love with a wonderful Belizean man last summer. And since then I have had not only this island to keep me company but a lovely new connection too. (Yay for me!)
The face on this painting has been repainted four times! I generally have a rule of thumb not to paint over things or obsess on corrections. But I just couldn't get the tone or feel I wanted. It was black and white, then yellowish browns, then blue (very blue) and now green. I have to say I like the green face but never intended for him to stay green. But now people I cannot bring myself to paint it again! Sheesh. I will still probably add something to those outer sides but he's almost finished. I'm headed back to the states this weekend and am not looking forward to sharing the cold with so many of you.
But I am looking forward to real coffee, Thai food and of all things sacred...Target!
So this was inspired by a paint brush I'd found on the beach here when I went for a walk the other day. I was thinking about the themes of the Manifest Hope contest and didn't have anything to go on yet.
and then I saw this insanely patriotic paintbrush in the sand. How funny is this? So that's what got me on a kick with this image. The category is Workers Rights. I'd actually like to add a lot more text to this image so that people understand the theme and just because I think it would look good. We'll see. I'd like to send it in with a caption saying (add your own event details please.)
I have been working on submitting some ideas to the Manifest Hope DC Gallery contest that's focus is on three primary campaign issues. Health Care Reform, Stimulating Green Opportunities and Worker's Rights. The art concept search is a good one and I thought what the heck. I'll give it a go. I have never felt more aware of color choices, gender and content. What a challenge. I have found it very difficult to make artwork that appeals to everyone and focuses on the issues. But it's good for me to try and think outside of my own freaky freedom. The contest is a quick one and ends on the 9th of January. For those of you interested in sending in your ideas here's the information from an incredible site. www.manifesthope.com
Hope you had a wonderful New Years and here's to 2009 off to a good start already!
I am the founding artist of PAPAYA! and our flagship, PAPAYA! Living Boutique in Ashland, Oregon, USA. This is my persuit of creative abandon. I'm here to share my artwork, inspiration, travels and lifestyle. To learn more visit the tabs at the top of this blog. Xoxox...