I had these two photos of myself taken in 2012 with my new camera (at the time) in a tub of leftover collage papers & photos. It came out of the tub because on Wednesday the 18th of March 2015, a total of 1004 people who do the online photo journal Blipfoto posted photos of themselves with their arms reaching left and right so to virtually "grab" the hand of the next participant when the online journal photos were all lined up together, as they are on the site . . .Read More
Recently, I found I have not been working in my art journal on a daily basis, but still dive in a few times a month. Instead, I take photographs every day (fairly consistently) and journal about my favorite one for that particular day on my blipfoto journal. This habit has become a wonderful creative outlet for me - obviously, as I just celebrated 4 years of keeping a daily, or almost daily photo journal . . .Read More
A look behind the scenes at creative lenna via a virtual blog tour. I'm not sure when this 'blog tour' got started on the web, but I learned of it from my friend Joanna Urbani. How absolutely lovely that she wanted to nominate me for inspiring her! :-DRead More
Even though I have not been posting too often on my blog, I'm still working away in the background on my life & art!Read More
“Moderation. Small things. Sample a bit of everything. These are the secrets of happiness and good health.” ~ Julia ChildRead More
Here's the story of my long absence! Even though the blog has been quiet for 3 months, I've actually still been here. If you kept this space bookmarked and are reading this post, I'm both amazed and grateful. Truth be told, the work of moving to a new home in November coupled with a health issue kept me away from my blog. The move left my art supplies boxed up for months. The rest of the house got unpacked but the studio space required so many decisions. I was just not up to making them. And since my creative art making process is what I really enjoy sharing here, I found I was not blogging either.
Fortunately, the health issue has been sorted and . . . the studio is almost all unpacked! I have a new Doctor, one that listens, who recently told me he was not worried about me, but would continue testing my liver every six months. I have a chronic liver disease called nonalcoholic steatohepatitis or NASH, which is a common and often “silent” liver disease. There are no specific treatments yet, but losing weight has been found to be helpful to shrink the fat cells that aggravate the liver. I'm happy to say I'm down 15 lbs since September and my cholesterol is down too. I had to give away a huge bag of clothes (too baggy) and I'm now fitting easily into clothes that used to be too tight! I have another 15 pounds to shed but I'm not worried about it. Removing wine or any alcohol from my diet has been a huge help in losing weight - plus that is best for my liver. When I have bloodwork and another ultrasound in June, I'm anticipating an improvement in the health of my liver.
Now, in regards to the Mail Art, which is what I really want to talk about most here . . . this is what happened. Knowing how I work, I thought a deadline would be most helpful to get me to started creating again. I've continued being creative through photography during my absence (see my photo journal at blipfoto) but I instinctively knew that to get myself doing collage or mail art I would need a deadline. This is where two of my art buddies, Joanna Urbani and Jewels Welch stepped in to help me (follow those links to see their mail art). They have been exchanging mail art with a theme every month. I have been enjoying their creations! So I slyly asked them if I could join in their exchange . . . . well, they both enthusiastically wrote back that they'd be more than happy (VERY happy!!) for me to join in with their Mail Art/postcard fun. Whoo hoo -in like Flynn!
|Queen Victoria in her wedding dress -note the headpiece|
Jewels gave us the theme of the Language of Flowers. Choose a flower, look up the meaning, decorate a postcard and an envelope to share the meaning of the flower without using the name. Then the mail art recipients could have fun guessing the flower. My friend Cheryl who lives near me in Sarasota gave me the idea for my flower. I told her what I was doing and she reminisced about planning her parents wedding anniversary. Cheryl had looked up the meanings of the flowers that were in her mom's original bouquet, as she was reproducing it for the occasion. One flower in particular she told me about, I already had growing in my yard!
|my card above|
|attached to the back of the card|
I researched on the internet (fun!) and created an information sheet about the history of the orange blossom, then enclosed it inside a small envelope attached to my card.
|one of the envelopes|
|back of the envelope|
Love is the flower you've got to let grow.
~ John Lennon
The direct link: http://animoto.com/play/1uQ4ErIrUlNK9P8pQPl1wg
for a full-size screen, click on the small white rectangle in the bottom right corner!
|A photo of me *by debra pettinato-ross* on Siesta Beach on Christmas day!|
I wanted to suggest if you missed my posts here, you can find me on blipfoto almost every day. Blipfoto is an international photo journal site. You can look at my journal here. The idea is to post one photo a day taken on that day and then write about it, if you wish. Since my main creative activity recently is taking photographs, I have gravitated towards sharing them there . . . instead of here, at least for now! You can sign up for a free blipfoto account and be able to comment, or just visit and read as often as you wish. Not much art is going on here yet as my supplies are only minimally unpacked. I think that should change in the not so distant future but there is a lot going on here at our new home (work to beautify) and I am allowing my art studio to unfold in it's own natural time.
The greatest honor of a lifetime is to be who you are.
~ paraphrased from Joseph Campbell
If you cannot see the short video I've embedded below about the project, please go here: http://youtu.be/t168HcRgfKQ. I hope you join me!
Les arbres sont la creation de la terre pour parler au ciel.
Trees are the earth's effort to speak to heaven.
You can read more about it on my journal entry for January 23.
I am still catching up . . . not uploading for every day that I missed, but just for days with photos that are important to me or special in some way that I want uploaded to my photo journal.
Thanks for visiting! I have changed my comments here back to a separate page instead of embedded and I hope that makes it easier for you, I heard it was troublesome at times. I am sorry if the new captcha code (prove you are not a robot) is harder to do (I find it is) but unfortunately I don't have any control over that. I need to leave comment moderation on in order to keep phishing and spam off of my sites. They still try to leave it sometimes, but this way I can catch it and no bad links are posted!
|I used this one for my blipfoto . . .|
|This was the original!|
; ^ ) lenna
On May 1st, I discovered and committed to Julie Balzer's Art Journal Every Day. For a while there I was working in both my art journal and taking and uploading a photo, every day. whew! I have just finished four months of doing something in an art journal almost daily -or at least trying to. I really loved doing this and produced so much art. It really threw me into working in an art journal, something new for me, as well as doing something artistic and creative that was just for me. Since I am often doing art for other reasons -swaps, teaching samples, submissions . . . art for ME was an an unusual and wonderful experience!
September 1st rolled around today and I realized I was not ready to commit to working in my art journal every day. I remembered I had saved a link to a website where the challenge was to be creative everyday - making a piece of art (any kind), cooking, dancing, singing, knitting, taking photos -whatever, anything creative! I found the site: creative every day and it definitely appealed to me. Low pressure and I did not need to post about it everyday unless I wanted to. So! I have committed myself to this. I feel good that I have committed to a challenge that will encompass all the things I like to do and not leave me feeling over committed or too frazzled. I may keep a journal about what I'm doing or I may just keep a pact with myself. Does that make sense? To celebrate, a photo I took of Asia today, in the back yard, just for fun. I also made a delicious butternut squash soup for dinner!
For this swap we were required to use the new postcard tags shown below from Collage Stuff. No problem there for me! I found them intriguing. I sewed a piece of my fabric paper with a flower theme to the front of the tag . . .
My student Beth asked me in a comment, "What will you do at the end of this May challenge?" That is such an excellent question, Beth! When I started this project I told myself I'd commit for the month of May and see how it went. That was really Julie Balzer's suggestion and a good one. I listened, since this whole thing is her idea! I am totally hooked on working in my art journal every day now that I have been doing it a few weeks. I think I've only missed 1 or 2 days this month. My need to do more hands-on creative work is what brought me here because earlier this year I felt I was doing only some and not enough. I was itchy for it. Most of my time was spent writing lessons for my online classes, helping students, organizing, writing, preparing and orchestrating my creative swaps - I wasn't doing as much art as I wanted to.
Blipfoto, wow! They make a celebration out of it on the site, announcing your 'blipday' and even giving you a balloon! I would say most members there try to do a special photo for that day. As one person remarked when I said my 100th blip was near, "oh, the pressure is on!" ; ^ )
For my special "Blipday" journal entry, I did not use the photo of our sweet Chloe above, even though she is so cute. Nor did I use this one I worked on in Photoshop, even though it was interesting . . .
|Asia, me & Chloe, in my parent's side yard|
|Playing with Photoshop and a picture of Asia . . .|
The rose is from my mother's garden and appears again here!
I can't even count how many photos I have taken since December 4th, when I signed up for my own blipfoto journal. A lot! I have taken many, many photographs and learned so much. In just about one week, I will celebrate my 100th blip (100 days of photos uploaded) in that short amount of time! I have taken even more photos than I can share if you can imagine, but here are a few recent ones:
|me, often at DeSoto memorial beach|
|Asia & Chloe xox|
|working with photoshop elements|
|These Capri pants are Thrift Shop finds!|
|My mom's special Iris - I asked my Mom where she got this Iris from. |
She laughed and said she got it from Home Depot here in Florida!!
Amazing, huh? It only blooms for a day or two.
|lots of beautiful photo opportunities -|
and now I am really taking advantage of them.
|Warm Mineral Springs|
I am sure this looks excellent for those of you battling snow & cold!
|The water is salty! It's very easy to float & relax in.|
|The fern garden at Historic Spanish Point|
|what Steven found in the Fern Garden|
|walking at Historic Spanish Point|
|Steven taking a break!|
|In the Butterfly Garden|
|Historic Spanish Point|