Sunday, March 29, 2009

checking it off!

What a weekend...It weekend started with my husband coming home sick Friday night who I had to take care of- lots of drama when the husband is sick- he is kind of a man/baby.  My plethora of work gave me a good excuse lock myself in the studio and stay away from the germs.  I worked my tail off and am happy to say that I have checked everything off my to do list for now- purses for my trunk show- check, class materials for online class- check, custom purses- check!  And it is just in time because I am afraid I am coming down with my husband's crud which I am not happy about- germs always have really bad timing!!

Pretty Please...

Recently my friend Kelly Rae blogged about "What is and What is Not Okay" a great post about using art, inspiration and projects from her book. I feel the need to post my own thoughts about this topic.

I wrote Canvas Remix to inspire others to try new techniques and concepts to find their own style. I love teaching and demonstrating simple techniques and tools and ways to think differently about art and while I am an author and a teacher who puts information out there- I am first and foremost a painter and artist who makes a living from my own creations that have taken me years to develop.

Please, please, pretty please...

Do not teach from my book, publish techniques or directions from my book (or my blog, articles, online classes and tv appearances) on your website in your own articles or blog without my permission. I work really hard to constantly come up with new ideas, projects and techniques that I have written about and published in articles, in my book and on my blog in hopes of providing inspiration for my readers.

Please do not use photos from my blog, website or onlines classes without my permission. I love when people link to me or review my work and I gladly provide photos to those who ask- please just ask.

Pretty please do NOT reproduce my designs, concepts and replicate my art or purses for
financial purposes. I wrote a book to inspire, I write articles to inspire NOT for others to replicate my concepts and work for the purpose of selling and building their own business based on the things that have I been selling and creating for the last decade.  I often choose NOT reveal all of my secrets that go into making my purses or paintings for this reason- I am not just a teacher I am also a designer and artist who makes a living from selling completely original items.   Example- If you have taken one of my classes and love painting messy canvas and have had fun sewing with it and have been inspired to use it in your creative projects...GREAT!! But if you are now opening an Esty shop, marketing your work the same way that I market my own, using my concepts, colors, words, shapes and designs of my purses and items that I sell, then there is a problem.  

One of the most profound things that you can do as an artist and a creative person is find your voice, your style and your own unique art to make. While I understand wanting to learn techniques and projects that many artists teach, use this as a starting point- embrace finding a unique way to make it your own.. Please don't embrace my designs as your own. (Kelly describes this really well goes into more detail in her post and I invite you to read her thoughts on this topic.)

The bottom line is that I do not support copying another artist's work- being creative is about finding yourself, it's being authentic and creating work that is unique.  Taking a class and reading a book should be the first step in creating your own look, your own style and the beginning of expressing yourself visually.  If any of this is unclear or you have questions about your work please just ask.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Before + After = Joy

There is something that I LOVE about the concept of before and after- I have always liked makeover and remodeling shows and on an even deeper level there is something that I love about transformation.  My whole creative process revolves around transformation- starting with a piece of canvas and transforming it by adding layers of color and texture and then transforming it again into something new and often functional! I never get tired of this process- each and everyone one of my creations brings me ABSOLUTE joy when finished!

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Lots to Share!

This week has been busy, busy busy...but really what else is new?  I have lots of fun announcements, information and of course shout outs to share!
I have meant to share this stuff but have gotten caught up in LIFE so here it goes!

First I wanted to announce that I will participating in a book that author and artist Chrissie Grace is writing- It's all about swaps and collaborations- there is a fun group of people participating and this is sure to be a really wonderful book.
  Check out Chrissie’s blog for more information! 

I will be having a trunk show here in San Diego at the Escondido Museum of Art during Escondido Fashion Week on Thursday, April 9th- Its not LA or NYC Fashion week but it is a week devoted to fashion!!! I am super excited and have been creating like crazy making some really unique purses to sell. Having a trunk show is a pretty cool opportunity and it got me thinking about having a virtual trunk show that all of you would be invited to attend on my blog- You would be able to view and purchase purses at discounted rate! 
Stay tuned for more info!!

I ALSO MUST have to give some shout outs to wonderful bloggers out there who have recently been throwing some wonderful PR my way in the last week! 

Please go check out Jennifer Perkin’s blog- not only because she gave Canvas Remix and AWESOME review but her blog is packed full of really creative tips, techniques and projects. I first met Jen when I was a guest on the DIY show Craft Lab and her easy personality and fun sense of humor made taping a television a little less stressful! I think Jen is one of the hardest working peeps in the crafting biz and I am so inspired by her ability to find creative ways to market and run her business!

My thanks go out to Kelly Rae who recently wrote a lovely post about Canvas Remix and hosted a give away on her blog. Because of Kelly’s post, I have aquired all kinds of new readers which is always great! I met Kelly a couple of year ago via email when working on my book and she has been a wonderful online friend who I hope I will someday get to meet in person!! If you don’t read her must!! It is full of honesty, inspiration and a true glimpse at what it means to find yourself as an artist!! 

You will have to visit the Quilting Arts blog for a wrap up of the Quilting Arts TV filming in February OMG!! There are some really great photos and some FUN video of all of us in the green room passing time!! 

Check out the Bernina Blog!!! Jeanne Delpit of Bernina who I met in Cleveland and is honestly one the nicest people I have met in a while taught me how to use a Bernina for the 1st time! I have been dreaming of Bernina ever since!!! 

Check out the around the way blog

If you are an artist or blogger who has created your own projects inspired by Canvas Remix, my online classes or if you have blogged about my clutches or book- Please let me know! I want to make sure that I mention you in my shout out blog posts!!

Sunday, March 22, 2009

So Much Fun Trespassing!

So I had a pretty GREAT weekend- not only was I really productive but I spent the the morning with my husband roaming around neighborhoods, under bridges, on train tracks and in some kinda scary parts of town- All for my online class- Graffiti Chic. We were doing some filming and photographing some inspiration for the next two weeks of lessons!  

We had SOOOOOO much fun trespassing in places we weren't supposed to go (but all we were doing was taking pictures I promise) exploring our city and trying really hard to stay dry in a "not so San Diego" downpour!  One thing I realized when hunting down graffiti is that the city of San Diego has done a really good job at painting over graffiti.  All the places that we knew we would find amazing stuff had been painted over.  And while I really am supportive of keeping our streets clean I must say I was bummed to see how good of  job our city did covering what I consider art!  Oh well, we had a blast that we topped off with a sinful lunch that I am going to need to eventually burn off (theres always tomorrow!).

Saturday, March 21, 2009

And the Winner Is.........

The winner of the Custom Clutch is Little Fragment Studios- Congratulations- please contact me so we can start planning your custom clutch! 

I just have to start by saying all the comments that everyone left about all they juggle were incredibly inspiring and reassuring.  I often feel like I am the only one juggling (though I know this is not true) in my low moments- which are fleeting- I tend to feel frustrated, challenged and not sure why I am doing what I am doing. Reading about the things that all of you have going on reminds me of how complex, multifaceted and amazing WE women are! 

In honor of the lives that many of us lead I am going to start hosting a monthly interview on my blog about women who are juggling normal life along with making some of their dreams come true.  So if you are raising a family and growing a small business or working all day and then working into the night on your passion- please contact me! I will be posting very soon my first interview with a childhood friend who is growing a business as a chef- stay tuned!   

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

custom clutch giveaway!

I just finished the last of my custom purse orders tonight and I am SO happy to have caught up on work (for today!).  Sometimes I honestly cannot believe how much I am juggling right now but accomplishing each project one day at a time makes it worth it!

And to celebrate, I decided its time to do another custom clutch giveaway- I have been giving away all kinds of fun stuff on other wonderful  blogs  I thought I should join in the fun and give something away on my own blog!  

The winner will receive a CUSTOM CLUTCH and will get to pick their own colors, words and images for their purse and then I will make it for you!!

So here is how it goes...

Leave me a comment- tell me what things you juggle in your own life.
The winner will be drawn on Friday 
Good Luck!

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Updates, Shout Outs and a Give Away!

After lots of planning and research, I have decided that I will now be offering a variety of online classes each month that you will see in the left hand column of my blog.   My goal is to offer a variety of class topics, lengths of class time and prices to accommodate schedules and budgets. The class section will get updated and I will be making announcements on my blog so please stay tuned.  In a crazy economy where many people are choosing to forego travel and spending lots of money, I am passionate about offering alternatives for those who still want to take art classes!  If you have any requests or suggestions for classes, please send them my way!

 I also wanted to share some fun links with examples of student work from the first week- I am beyond thrilled, excited and inspired by the positive response to my first online class and though we are only into the 2nd week, so far everyone seems to be going WILD and having fun- just what I like!

Karen wrote a lovely post about her first week creations!

 Check out Jeane's blog entry on her amazing backgrounds!

 Leslie has gone WILD and I am lovin' it!!!!!!

 I am crazy about Stephanie's studio and she has definitely gotten messy this week!!

******The lovely and amazing Kelly Rae is hosting a giveaway on her blog with one of my books and one of my clutches.  Go check it out here!!

Monday, March 16, 2009

Whimsical Women-Online Class

Whimsical Women 
Online Class
April 13- May 16th
Please note start date change!

While I consider myself first and foremost a painter, I have found passion for pairing my painting and mixed media techniques with sewing!   This workshop will bring it all together and you will learn how to create whimsical women made from painted canvas, 
hand painted fabric, found objects and much more!

You will learn:
 How to brainstorm, sketch and design your own women
How to paint simple faces
Create your own mixed media fabric
Learn simple and non traditional sewing techniques
How to incorporate alternative supplies and found objects
Simple and nontraditional sewing techniques
And all kinds of unique ways to construct your very own funky, wild, beautiful, mixed media whimsical women!


*Class starts  April 6th and runs for 5 weeks (until May 16th)
* You will have access to the classroom blog until May 31st
*Class costs $50 (thats only $10 a week!!)
*Class will be held on a private blog that only registered students are able to access.
*Basic computer skills are needed (be able to login, access a blog, etc)
*There will be TONS of photos, step by step visuals, video lessons (of yours truly teaching and demoing in my studio but not in my pj's), pdf class workbook, class outline, lessons, tips  and lots and lots of inspiration to download.
*A high speed connection if definitely recommended (because of the above!)  
*New lessons will be posted each Monday and throughout the week there will be additionalposts full of inspiration, you will have the opportunity to work on projects at your own pace.
*Supplies needed are very simple, inexpensive craft items- (I strongly believe creating art should not cost a lot of money!!)  
*Each week will also include live and private chats AND as much email support and contactas needed.

*Payment is accepted via PayPal 
(if you need an exception to this please email me and let me know).  
*Feel free to register anytime before the last day of class which is May 16th
*Refunds will be made until the first day of class April 13th.  
After April 13th refunds will not be given.
*Once you register and pay, you will receive and email confirmation with a supply list and details and login information about the site where the the class is held


Sunday, March 15, 2009

Another Birthday

What happens when you turn 34, when time passes a little faster, when you feel a bit older, tired and little flabby????   YOU GO TO DISNEYLAND!!!!!!!!!!

Another birthday has come and gone this weekend and while I really don't care too much about growing old, this HAS been one of those years when I did feel a little older (achy, tired and a little slower) and while I am fine with the process, (I even welcome it) a little childlike fun was much needed and FUN we had!!! Me, my husband and brother headed out bright and early for Disneyland and spent the day running around to our favorite rides having a light hearted day that ended with sleeping through the whole car ride home- just like when I was kid.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Another Preview!

Another little preview of for this next week's lesson on stencils for my online class- Graffiti Chic! 

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Bright Day!

There is nothing like a box FULL of handmade buttons to brighten my day!  Not sure if everyone out there knows- but my parents are ceramic artists (see this post for more info) and every few months they have been supplying me with buttons made from scrap clay that I use in many of my purses.  I have a HUGE button obsession and honestly they are not cheap so getting a bunch of homemade, one of a kind, lovely clay buttons makes for some excitement in my day!! 

In more bright news, I am THRILLED at how great my online class is going so far.  I have a class full of super talented people that are enthusiastic about making a mess!! Who knew there were so many out there eager to drip, splatter and swipe!  I will sharing some of their work in the weeks to come.   The class has been SO successful that I have decided to continue to offer more classes in the months to come and I am open to suggestions!

I am a blog sponsor on Emily Falconbridge's blog this month and she will be having some FUN giveaways (my book being one) so definitely go check it out.  And while you are there check out this precious video she posted- My hubby and I go back and forth about having a family....well this video makes brought tears to my eyes and made lean a little closer to having a little one!

I just saw a preview of my article in the summer edition of Where Women Create and I am so excited and cannot to wait to share my CRAZY studio with the world.

Saturday is my birthday and what better way to celebrate getting older than by going to Disneyland!! So my husband and brother and I are heading north for a little innocent fun!  I'm sure I will have lots of fun pictures to share!!

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

My Hair=Metaphor For My Life!

Is it any wonder that when my hair is in an awkward stage so is my life?!?!? Well, that is my current situation-I have been growing my hair out from a SUPER short pixie cut and this time I am not going to cut it. For the last 13 years I have had my hair short (except when I grew it out to my chin for my wedding 5 year ago and then chopped it off myself during our honeymoon). 

My hair is how I express myself, it has been a variety of colors, different lengths of short and numerous styles for the last decade and thank goodness is has been short otherwise going back and forth with color would have been a tragedy with long hair! 

But I decided months ago that I want to grow it out and this time I WOULD NOT GIVE IN TO CUTTING IT, not even in the awkward stage!!! Now I have arrived at the the awkward stage and that seems to be the theme in my life right now- I feel like I am waiting- not only waiting for my stupid hair to grow (I know kinda shallow!!) but waiting for what happens next, waiting for hard work to pay off, waiting for the outcome of decisions, waiting to get to the next chapter, waiting for the restlessness to go away, trying to be patient through setbacks and challenges. But I have decided to stick it out with my hair and just embrace the way it looks today- just like I have decided to stick it out with the current stage in my life- I have grand plans and big dreams that require patience and sticking it through - even during the awkward times.

Sunday, March 08, 2009


I just wanted to share a little DVD preview of content for my online Class- Graffiti Chic which starts tomorrow!! This video is one of a handful for this week's dvd and photo lessons in creating messy backgrounds. I really don't paint this fast even though sometimes it feels like it!!!

You can still register to take Graffiti Chic- up until the last day of class on April 5th- click here for more information!

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Polyvore Love

Five years ago, when I first started making purses (made from canvas paintings)- I had this vision of creating one-of-a-kind funky purses paired that could be paired with cool fashion.  My dreams have come true, thanks to Polyvore where you can mix and match your favorite fashion. I have loved Polyvore for while (hours spent creating dream outfits) but recently stumbled upon lots of Polyvore outfits paired with my graffiti clutch handbags! I picked a few of my favorites (look closely for my purses!)

Retro Street Chic.
Retro Street Chic. - by vanessavilla on

my cup of coffee,my smoke/.
my cup of coffee,my smoke/. - by _liebeloula_ on

unique - by pika911 on
almost time
almost time - by KeeKi on

Remembering Sunday.
Remembering Sunday. - by darry! TASTES LIKE VIOLENCE. on

Sunday, March 01, 2009

Coming Down-Jumping In!

I am still coming down off of my jet lag and adrenaline high from my trip to Cleveland. The weekend was a little weird due to my body being run down and my time clock being a little off- but boy was is beautiful here in San Diego the vitamin D did me some good! I slowly began jumping back into my studio and work on some new projects. Made a whole bunch of new canvas and started making some more purses! This evening I am trying to savor my last hours of the weekend and getting myself ready to jump into a new week tomorrow!!

Just a reminder that you can still register for my 1st online class- Graffiti Chic- and if graffiti is not your cup of tea there will be more online workshops coming very soon!


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