Friday, April 29, 2011

Great giveaway to share!

Paper Cakes Finds
A fun website that advertises so many amazing creatives is giving away advertising spots! I thought I'd share this for two reasons, well actually three. The first is for all those shoppers looking for goodies, it's a great place to fine wonderful artists and creators to buy from. The second is for all those creatives that are looking for a spot to advertise their websites. And of course third, it counts as another entry if I blog about this great contest!  Can't miss another chance to win! Here are the details...Just click on the link below the banner be redirected to Paper Cakes blog to enter.
Keeping my fingers crossed for anyone who enters! Let me know what you think of the site
and if you enter! Good luck!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Off to the Beach!

Well, at least my jewelry is off to the beach! The Mystic Jewel in the Outer Banks, North Carolina has two amazing shops that carry Stacie Jewelry. Here are few pieces that I sent off to the shops:

If you ever get the chance to spend a little time in the beautiful Outer Banks area, check out The Mystic Jewel shops. One is located in Duck and the other in Corolla.

Off to create more jewelry! Enjoy your day.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Happy Earth Day!

"Bob" Madi's tree she planted for Earth Day
Welcome to Earth Day! My daughter Madi planted a tree for Earth Day and promptly named Bob. So, welcome Bob!
Last weekend I attended a Recycle Reuse Earth Day Exhibit at The Muse. It was a crazy weather day, with high winds and thunderstorms. I actually read in the paper this week that three tornadoes did touch down that evening in New Market. But, I couldn't miss it! Here are some of the exhibits that were displayed that evening:
"Truth" by Courtney Prahl  
Courtney created this amazing sculpture using roots, vintage pieces, and found objects. Courtney is a mixed media artist with a great shop on Etsy.
"Buttons & Chains bracelet" by Stacie Spencer
I used vintage jewelry from three different necklaces and old buttons. Read more about this piece in my Earth Day Art Challenge post.

"When Pigs Fly" by Heidi Rosencrantz
Heidi used a music box, dishware, toy figurine, vase and paper mache to create her fun sculpture.
"Bench & Chair" by John Cummings
John is a homeless man that lives in Frederick. He used clothespins to create these intricate wooden designs.
"The Dancer" by John Holly
John created his dancer using a coat hanger, aluminum and fabric scrap.

"Hope" by Laurel Manthey Silvio
Laurel used wood, scrap metal, photos, chicken wire, jar, sticks and newspaper to create her beautiful artwork.
"We all live downstream" by Hillary Banachowski
Hillary used wood, glass, metal flashing, sheet rock, and acrylic paint to create her water themed artwork.
"Earth Goddess" by Karen Peacock
Karen Peacock created her sculpture using Costco bathing suit display torsos, discarded materials, and leftover paint.
"Pink Lady" by Ellen Byrne
This is one of my favorites, I think the Pink Lady is beautiful and serene. Ellen used an old frame and canvas, "opps" paints which are colors from rejected house paint.

If you live in the area, you still have time to visit the exhibit at The Muse. The Earth Day exhibit will run through April 30th.  I have to say, I'm really happy that I braved the weather! Hope you have a wonderful Earth Day! I'd love to know what you did today to celebrate Earth Day. If you get a chance, leave me a comment and let me know.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

21 Secrets Collage, Painting & Soul Class

I had a great time this Wednesday working on a Collage class from 21 Secrets. What an amazing class this is! I wish I could lock myself in my studio for a week and just play with all the wonderful techniques.

My sister came up for a visit this week for my birthday and a little creative time. We had so much fun with this particular class. The concept included first writing down your thoughts on your journal page, then covering them with fun collage papers. The next task was to find a face in a magazine to alter.

The theme of my journal page was courage and letting go of fears. My thoughts were centered around my art and letting go of all the fears and just soaring. So, I was looking to create something very bold and striking. Here is a photo of the collage before I altered and painted the face:
I choose the Lion to symbolize courage and bravery. We pulled out the paints and transformed the faces, added details to the collage and just kind of played. Here's the result:

The woman is strong and bold, while the Lion is softer and kind. I really love how it turned out. It's funny because I actually picture my journal page at times when I feel I need a little courage.

My sister's collage turned out quite different, much softer and beautiful. Here is her collage before she altered it:
The woman's face is soft and serene. She has two teenage boys, so you can see she is looking for a bit of calm and relaxation!  Here is her collage after she added her magic touches of pen and paint:

I really love the soft blues she incorporated into her collage. So excited to find a few hours to start another class!

While I was visiting the forum for the class this morning, I found this link to a blog called Kim Klassen Cafe that had 10 fabulous quotes we can trust. I wanted to share them with you.
10 quotes that you can trust. Kim Klassen Cafe

 I hope you enjoy the quotes and find a home for some of them in your own artwork. Enjoy your day.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Blogging For Lila - One special little girl

Today's story is about a special little artist named Lila. Lila is a remarkable, talented little girl all of 4 years old. Unlike most little four year old artists, Lila struggles with a very challenging disease, Cerebral Palsy. I can only imagine the challenges and struggles that face Lila and her parents on a day to day basis.

Cerebral Palsy is a neuromuscular disease that affects the cerebellum in the brain. Lila's cerebellum has been growing at a slower rate than the rest of her brain. Lila's issues are mainly physical. Her parents have started a blog called, Mommy you know what, to raise awareness of the disease as well as funds for much needed stem cell therapy. Here is a bit of information about Lila that I borrowed from her mother, Maria's blog:

“Lila is a beautiful 4-year-old girl, who lives with cerebral palsy and hasn’t been given a fair chance at life.  We, Lila’s parents, are on a quest to give her that fair chance by allowing her to have a stem cell treatment this coming summer.

Since birth, Lila’s cerebellum has been growing at a slower rate than the rest of her brain.  The cerebellum controls a multitude of things that we all take for granted (i.e. balance, coordination, emotion, muscle tone, muscle control).  The majority of Lila’s issues are physical, as she walks with a walker, has no balance or coordination, and has low muscle tone.

Stem cell treatments with CP have been proven to help the child with speech annunciation, balance, strength, and increased levels of cognitive abilities.   In every child, the levels of these changes differ, however they have all been seen time and time again.  If these changes are all we see in Lila, this will certainly change her life forever, and you will have helped!

All of that being said, she is a very happy little girl who seems to shine a light on everyone she comes across.  There are people in our community that know and love her, whom we don’t even know!  I seem to believe it is her smile that captures everyone’s hearts, as she has ours.   What a special little girl, one that has taught us how to love unconditionally, to not take the little things for granted, and to know that each little milestone is truly a really big milestone! 

We love her so much and just want to give her a chance for a more “normal” life.  For Lila that means that she may have the chance to have a college education, career, marriage and a family.  Our goal is to raise $20,000 by mid-June, however we hope to surpass that goal give Lila have a second treatment after one year, which is recommended by the doctors and could benefit her tremendously.  We hope that you all will join us on our journey, and embrace our little girl just as we have!” (as told by Maria)

Today's post is part of a "blog hop" that my creative friend Sarah Stevenson put together to support her friends Maria and Lila. Sarah started off the blog hop on her blog, What is Design? It's been very inspiring reading all the different blogs that have participated. Our goal of the blog hop is to raise awareness of Lila and her journey and funds for her stem cell therapy.

I'd like to offer a way for you to help out Lila. From today, April 15th, until the end of the month I'd like to donate 25% of all my Stacie Jewelry Etsy sales to Lila and her Stem cell therapy fund. All you need to do is hop over to my Etsy shop and purchase a piece or two of jewelry. I will automatically keep track of the sales and donate the 25% to Lila on May 1st. Please share this fundraising information with your friends and family. I'll keep you posted through twitter and facebook about our progress. After the fundraiser is over, I'll write a post to let you know how much we raised.

You can hop on over to Angie Allen's blog, Snap Shots of the Daily Grind on Monday, April 18th for the next post about Lila. Thank you so much for taking time out of your day to read about Lila.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

An Expert at 100!

I just had a birthday, my 49th. It was a perfect day. The weather was amazing and I got to spend my day with 3 of my favorite friends. I had a wonderful celebration with my family the night before and just couldn't have wished for anything else.

My son got me a Border's gift card, so yesterday I borrowed him from school and we went to lunch and the bookstore.  I found these fun little drawing books and just had to buy them with my gift card!
The first one has great ideas about drawing simple cute people.

I thought, I'm already 49 and I'm really just getting started on this whole drawing thing. Then I thought, hey by the time I'm 100, I'll have over 50 years drawing experience! I immediately felt much better.

Here are a few of my fun drawings from the first book about cute people:

 And for the boys...

I had a blast drawing these cute little people. Can't wait to start on the plants and small creatures book!

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Earth Day Art Challenge

Last week I answered a call for art for an Earth Day Art Challenge with the Muse in Frederick. The challenge was to create a piece of art using entirely recycled items. Since I happen to enjoy working with jewelry, I decided to create a piece of jewelry using vintage jewelry and buttons. I am happy to say that the bracelet I created was accepted for the Earth Day Exhibit!

Here are photos of the vintage pieces that I used to create my "new" bracelet.

I enjoyed the challenge of using vintage jewelry pieces and buttons to create something new. I always like the idea that someone else wore the jewelry in another place and in another time. The buttons are from a collection that I inherited from my husband's great Aunt Marguerite.  Aunt Marguerite was a talented artist herself and loved anything crafty, so I know that she would enjoy that fact that her buttons are living on in the artistic world. I have used her buttons in mixed media collage and as decorative embellishments on clothing.  She had an amazing talent of carving birds from wood. I will have to take photo's of her work and share them with you in a future post.

So, here is the final result of combining all these separate pieces together.

There is an artist reception next week at The Muse from 5-7 on Saturday night the 16th. I will make sure to bring my camera so I can share some of the other recycled art pieces with you.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Branching Out

When I sat down to my computer this morning to create a treasury I looked outside my office window for inspiration. First, I saw a rainy and dark day. I thought this can't be a good treasury theme. After drinking a bit more coffee I was able to see the beautiful budding trees in our front garden. So, here is the treasury that came from that vision of Spring growth.
Branching Out
Take a minute today to branch out and try something new. If you do, leave a comment and share your new experience with me. Thanks for stopping by.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Artist of the Month - Monica Soeldner

A New Path
This month's artist, Monica Soeldner's creative endeavors include a combination of jewelry, mixed media, photography and printmaking. Quite a collection of amazing work. I decided to start off our post finding out a little bit more about Monica's jewelry making process. Funny how that one grabbed my attention first!

Monica first creates mini collages and then displays them behind a glass bubble. She is currently focusing on inspirational and encouraging words or reminders. I really like how the glass makes the message and artwork appear more mystical. For the next step, Monica solders the edges and works on the backs of the pendants. The backs are all unique as well, each one is a different vintage paper or washi tape that is then sealed in a resin coating. Sometimes she even puts little words or notes on the back. The best part is each one is truly unique; no two are exactly alike.

Monica studied film photography in college, but didn't really focus on it much until more recently.  Her photography, like her jewelry has a unique and truly inspiring look and feel to it.

She combines her love of collage and photography with her photography panels (above) which she will be exhibiting at the Enormous Tiny Art Show in Portsmouth, New Hampshire this fall. 

I enjoy the contrast of the sharp and blurred edges that she incorporates in her photography. It gives her work a mysterious and dreamy feel.
 I came across several photographic styles and techniques that I am not familiar with while reading about Monica's photography work in her blog. One such concept is called Through the Viewfinder (TTV). I asked Monica to give us a little more information about this interesting type of photography. Here is what she said;

"Through the Viewfinder (TTV) is the process of using a digital SLR camera to shoot an image of the viewfinder of a vintage twin reflex camera. I use a Kodak Duaflex III, which was produced sometime in the mid-1950s. I enjoy this process because I’m still able to get the lovely effects that the dust particles, flaws in the viewfinder, and interesting lighting that the Duaflex produces, without having to use film in it. The film for the Duaflex is no longer made, so in order to use film in this camera, I would need to re-roll it onto a spool that would fit it. With the TTV method, I’m able to forgo film and still get some of the effects of the Duaflex. It produces square images, which are then fun to use in my panels. You have to be prepared to talk to a lot of people if you are working with the TTV method out and about though...everyone is curious about that crazy contraption!"

TTV sounds really interesting and creative. It's nice to know that photography has other styles besides all digital. Another type of photography she mentioned is called lomography. I was curious about this style and asked Monica to explain it to me.

"Lomography is a company, but is sort of described as a type of photography now since it’s become more of an art form. It’s basically a variety of “toy” plastic cameras that produce distortion, blurring, differentiation in colors, and other “happy accidents” that make the photos seem more whimsical and dream-like. The Diana is probably the most popular of the lomography cameras, also the Holga. They are film cameras. I don’t have one yet, I’m still deciding what I want.But I love how dreamy the images turn out. I think they’ll be a perfect next step in my photography panels!"

Journaling is another form of artwork that interests Monica. I asked her what she usually fills her journal with and here is her response:

"Sometimes I doodle or add images to my journaling, but for the most part it’s a lot of writing. I usually go for a stream of consciousness, a free flow of thoughts. Then it will often jump into lists (lists of things I’m worried about, happy about, thankful for, goals, etc.). I journal both on my computer as well as in a number of moleskines I keep in various bags and next to my bed. I always have one I carry with me that often becomes a compilation of to-do lists, random thoughts, ideas for artwork, phone numbers and info I scribble down, etc. This year, one of my goals is to journal daily (more than just the random scribble here and there, but to get my thoughts down each day about what’s going on with me). This is like therapy to me. I find that I’m clearer on my direction, how I approach my work, and how I feel throughout each day if I get it all out like this."

Monica is about to begin a new and exciting chapter in her life. She has been accepted for a graduate program in Library Science in Boston. A girl after my own heart, I'd love to live and work in a library or bookstore! Just the smell of the books is enough to bring a smile to my face. But the field of library science has many different career paths. While Monica would love to work as a librarian, she has other interests as well. She is particularly interested in the tool of online presence development in libraries and library programs. She said that she would love to work on building community involvement in library programs via social media and interactive web databases.

Monica has a shop on Esty, M. Soeldner, if you'd like to see more of her jewelry. To read more about Monica and all of her remarkable artwork, visit her blog. In closing today, I had to include just one more photo from Monica. I love this photo of her and her very well loved dog, Erma.