Archive for August, 2009

day 21 – Golden Circle

Today is the last day of August and this is the final piece in my personal challenge to create a new piece daily and list it to my etsy shop. I successfully completed the challenge and I have to say I am very proud of myself. Thank you everyone for following along with me, and for those who purchased pieces and support me in my creative and artistic endeavors. (((Big hug everyone!)))

The Golden Circle is another piece inspired by my Circle Series. I worked it in reverse from what I usually do, moving from the outside in. All those tiny golden circles were hand painted in watercolors by yours truly and there are touches of gold shimmer here and there.

Change of topic, but more important, could I ask a huge favor of you? You might recall me mentioning my friend Nikki on here in the past. She has been struggling with cancer for over two years and because of recent events she is in desperate need of your prayers and/or any positive thoughts you can send her way. She is one of my nearest and dearest friends. Some wonderful things about Nikki:

She LOVES movies and would probably love to see every single movie ever made.
She loves photography and takes excellent pictures.
She was just married this summer to one of my other near and dear friends Tom.
She also is the kind of individual who always puts others before herself.
She will save any stray animal that comes her way.
And her birthday is one day before mine, but several years younger.

My sister in law is also organizing a novena to St. Peregrine, the patron St. of cancer patients. Starting on Wednesday she asks people to please say this prayer for 9 days in a row. I would be grateful if you could spread the word. You can read more about Nikki’s journey here on her Caring Bridge’s page.

Thank you!

Blog Inspiration and B&W Sunday


Today I wanted to share a great blog,  Na-Da Farm Life with Anne Marie. My sister-in-law sent me a link after meeting Anne Marie. Dacia knew that I would love the site, and it’s true, I absolutely love it. It’s a real breath of fresh air in the blog world.

Anne Marie and her family do the homesteading thing and she shares her life through blogging about the farm and family, composing beautiful observations on life, and posting her gorgeous photography and an occasional video. Oh, yeah, and she has chickens!

I really admire blogs like hers, which really speak, and have content and substance. I compare it to my own, and I’m left thinking Inspiration Junkie looks an over-eager 7 year old, arm flailing in the air,  “Look at what I made, look at what I made!”

Anne Marie does a post each Sunday called Black and White Sunday where she invites others to share their own black and white photography.  Since I wanted to share with you the wonderful Na-Da Farm Life blog, I thought I’d also take the opportunity to contribute to B&W Sunday as well. This afternoon I just had to get out of the house for a walk and took my camera along. The pictures in this post are the results of my jaunt, you can click on them to see them bigger over at flickr.

If you are interested in reading more of Anne Marie’s posts I encourage you to check out these posts below.  They have really inspired me lately.

Anne Marie’s oldest daughter requested a handmade dress and you can see the results in this post: Innocence

The Na-Da Farm way of life may give the impression that they live a simpler life, but in actuality it’s just richer. A kind of life I would love. Although I’m sure it’s not all just sitting in the prairie pastures watching clouds and listening to the birds. One can dream. Prairie Walk

Anne Marie invited readers to recreate in photography a favorite old painting, and although the deadline has passed, it might still be fun to do: Disguise Fete

Now, before I sign out I just thought I’d mention that tomorrow is the last day of August and the last day of my month long challenge to create a new piece of artwork daily. This month has sure spun by quickly. I can’t believe it will already be September. Fall is right around the corner.

day 20 – moth to the flame

Earlier today I was putting together some of my zines to send out in the mail.

They are teensie tiny zines that fit into a matchbox. Part of assembling the zines includes emptying the boxes of all matches into a zip lock bag that I store my matches in. I have LOTS of matches.

Today was yet another bustling day, by the time I got to start on my daily piece I just knew I needed to work on a piece that would be very repetitive. I wanted something that would be meditative to work on. I got the idea to just recreate the same image over and over and over again. I spent some time sketching different ideas out and nothing seemed to be working. I got up to take a break and as soon as I did I thought of all the matches from earlier today. Yes, I wanted to just draw match sticks over and over. But how is that interesting?

What I really wanted to do was just fill an entire page with matches, but it wouldn’t be much of an interesting composition. I started to think about matches, which made me think of fire, which made me think of flame, tada! “Like a moth to the flame” and the piece design was born.

I illustrated the piece in pen and ink, colored it in watercolors, then finished it with smudging black pastel around the edges.

This piece is available in my Etsy shop here.

day 19 – eat create sleep

eat, create, sleep, repeat. A day in the life, eh?

I rather like today’s piece, it makes me smile.

Are you noticing a trend in how the pieces are showing up late this week? Well, I have to admit that it is pretty difficult to fit in creating, listing and blogging each evening. I have more admiration for daily artists every passing day. I think the point of the daily artist is usually that this is their full time job and they are supporting themselves on their pieces, but me, well, I have another full time job AND I wanted to offer my pieces for a steal.

The month is winding down rapidly. I only have two more pieces to go. My plan all along has been that once the month is over the originals will be priced more appropriately. But, I’ve been tossing around an idea of adding prints to my shop of some of these pieces. They will stay fairly inexpensive. What do you think of that?

In a completely unrelated note today I discovered a new, um, sport? recreation? exercise? hobby? Well, whatever you want to call it, it’s pretty sweet. It’s hoop dancing, yeah, as in hula hooping. It’s amazing to watch how graceful and fluid these dancers’ moves are. I actually rule at hula hooping and do it all the time, cough, on the wii fit, but I probably couldn’t keep a real hula hoop up to save my life. Regardless, I think I would like to skip right past the introduction to hula hooping 101 and go straight to flame hoop dancing, see the video below.

I kid, I promise not to set myself on fire. Good night everyone.

day 18 doily

Day 18 is complete and available in my Etsy shop.

I have a list of things to do and a bunch of things I want to share here, but this week has been wearing me thin. Right now I’m so tired I can barely keep my eyes open. I wanted to take a nap right after work. But, if I did, I knew I’d probably never want to wake up until tomorrow. Yes, I’m that tired.

Sleep is calling.

day 17 – night scene

Today’s piece is done and I’m exhaust-ified. In the shop!


So, I was looking around my studio and saw this piece.

It’s a self portrait I did long ago, inspired by Chuck Close‘s technique. I really liked that piece and thought “Why not?” So I attempted something similar.

It’s based on the photograph I took below. Today’s piece above is based on the picture to the left in this diptych.

It took a long time, and now I’m ready for bed.

Good night!

Day 16 – Wings

Today’s piece was designed by just rummaging through my paper stashes. I sorted through different paper bits before finding the wings, which I ultimately decided to work around because I liked them so much. This piece is in my Etsy shop currently.

I used a coin holder which I’ve used before on a few mail art postcards.



My manager at work is a coin collector and I fell in love with coin holders so for Christmas one year he gave me a pack. Now I use them to trap and display ephemera behind, like in the above postcards. You can see the postcards larger by clicking on them.


i love you clouds, originally uploaded by robayre.

I wrote a whole long post, but decided it was just too much to share. Instead I just printed it out and will keep it for myself.

Summed up, it was just about today, and how it was a pretty great day.

day 15 – You’re my favorite

Back by popular demand, I’ve created another paper cut piece.

This piece completes week three in my daily pieces. I used the phrase “you’re my favorite” borrowed from my grass quote painting. I just love the phrase.

Yesterday’s piece sold so quickly, and with all your kind compliments I felt so flattered. Thank you so much (blushing).

Tomorrow morning I’m going to a bike auction held by the city. I’m crossing my fingers that I might find a bike just like my old one. It was a popular bike for several years and I used to see people riding them all around town. My ankle is healing up and I’d love to get back to riding my bike to work before it gets too cold out. Wish me luck :) oh, and I found this funny shirt today on threadless. I thought it was funny because I’ve had my bike stolen in the past.

Have a good weekend everyone!

Day 14 – Paper Cut

It’s 11 p.m. CST, which is where I reside. I’m am posting my daily piece just in time.

When I got home from work today and went into my studio I said “uh-uh, no way”. Last weekend I didn’t tidy up after last weeks daily pieces and this week it has just continued to pile up. There is literally a square foot of empty space in which to work.  But, did I begin to tidy up? No, of course not. I went to check my email, twitter some, facebook, finish a movie, check my email again.

Today’s piece has a bit of a story. I got the idea to do a paper cut piece while at work. On my work computer I have a  wallpaper I created using all flickr favorites. It makes me happy to glimpse between open files and programs and catch an image that inspires me.

So, mid-day I spied a paper cut piece by Elsa Mora and thought “I want to try that for tonight’s piece!” I used to be quite handy with a pen knife. Back in my newspaper days, they didn’t call me the Paste-Up Queen for nothin’.  When I finally sat down to start working I couldn’t think of anything to do. I even changed my mind at one point and decided to do a completely different piece, but I needed to print something out and my printer is out of ink. Back to the drawing, or rather cutting board.

I started pacing around my studio and my eyes fell on a card that my friend Jenny sent me years and years ago. It has the above image by Masha D’Yans and I just love, love, love it. I suddenly had my inspiration. Vines with leaves and flowers.  BTW, I just looked up Masha’s site to post the link here and I AM IN LOVE. She is my art idol. I love her watercolors, they’re so wet and loose, bright and wild,  there’s a touch of the dark and yet innocence at the same time, plus her work is often very earthy, leaves and grass and trees, just up my alley.

So, this is what I came up with. The picture isn’t that great for right now because I had to take it in a dark room with artificial lighting. I’ll switch it out tomorrow.

I like how it came out. It was very time consuming. I can’t imagine when Elsa is doing her paper cuts she is cutting 140 pound watercolor paper.  Each cut was more like 3 cuts back and forth again to get through it. I went through about 6 blades in the process, but it was worth it, don’tcha think?

In my shop!