Love

Happy Mug & Art Supply Giveaway

Hello creative friends! How's your week been? We are in the big thaw out after waaayyy too much snow in Portland. What a mess. So, I've been cozy inside having far too much coffee in my brand new mug BUT look how cute it is!

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Look, don't ask me why but fun mugs make me happy! THIS mug makes me VERY happy! It also completely describes my life! When I fill it up to the brim with yummy coffee and head on up to the studio, it makes me smile. Now, that, my friends is a good way to start your morning, right?

So as you know, when I LOVE something - I like to spread the word! What better way than to do a GIVEAWAY of three of these mugs to fellow creative friends! To kick it up a notch, I'm throwing in a $20 Blick Art gift cards too! We all know you can't have too many art supplies. ;)

This fabulous mug was created by the lovely Brooke Davies from Arrowcreek Goods. They have a lovely shop full of gorgeous mugs and they do custom work too! Make sure you go pay Brooke a visit.

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Good luck!

xo,

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Vulnerability + love = JOY

Hello lovely blog readers, I hope your week is going well. I have been down with a bad cold but I'm on the mend. All that time in bed, let me truly reflect on all that has happened in the past month.

Many of you know, I had an Art Retreat on Bainbridge Island about four weeks ago - the Intuitive Muse Retreat.

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Where we focused on trusting our creative instincts and quieting the critical mind. We set intentions, journaled and made A LOT of Art! It was an amazing experience and a great honor to teach on this magical island - a place I had been two times prior but as a student! The women that joined me were incredible souls, all beautifully open and excited to delve into learning more.  (Little did I know, just how much I would learn along the way.)

So let me share with you a little about the journey...

Robin and I were lucky enough to stay in a sweet spot just a few steps away from the farm. It was the perfect place to center myself for the teaching that lay ahead and with a view of Seattle like this...well...it was beyond gorgeous and did much to soothe my anxious mind.

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The days leading up to the retreat were spent drinking tea and practicing my lessons with Robin. She was so kind and patient, listening to me go over things a thousand times! LOL.

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That's the funny thing about what I do - it kind of terrifies me! I actually get very nervous when having to speak in front of a crowd. Online, in front of the camera, it is somehow easier but sitting in a room with a many sets of eyes on me - oh boy - it makes my hands shake and my nose sweat. (Yes, my nose sweats when I'm nervous, it's very attractive - I assure you.) 😜

I knew that the hardest part would be the first night. The introductions. The part where I have to talk about myself.  I knew that if I could make connections, I would soon relax. I wanted to get to THAT place as quickly as possible but as time would have it, I needed to experience each stage as it came. There was no fast forward button on this gig.

That first night, we gathered at the ranch house for the welcome dinner.  I was greeted with beautiful, warm hugs and even a few excited tears. It humbles me each and every time I meet a student "in real life". The connection I feel for them and them to me is a true thing. What a gift to receive. It amazes me to this day, how powerful the internet is and how very real the connections can be. Invisible heart strings that somehow manage to go through the computer screen. Magic indeed.

When it came time to sit in a circle and do our introductions, the ladies did the rounds first and I listened intently,  shaky hands folded in my lap. Each woman lit a single candle to represent her presence and placed it gingerly on a beautiful old artist's palette - a treasure from Serena's family. It was a sacred thing to behold.

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I was stunned at the similarities of our stories. Before me, was a group of 10 women from all different backgrounds, all different ages and family situations but the common thread was apparent. We were all seekers. We had lived a life seeking out our creativity, searching for our joy and the connection to our soul. We had all jumped through careers, or passions - each coming in with force and usually fizzling out until we followed the next pull. The next insatiable curiosity. Photography, crafts, scrapbooking, cooking, gardening and even creating skin creams! We had all jumped through multiple phases on our journey towards Art. The fact is, Art is seeking. It becomes the vehicle of expression to discover the deeper layers, the hidden parts, the shadowy darkness and the shining light we all carry within us. So, while on the outside we had our differences, really, we were of one mind. One heart, hungry for more.

This helped ease me a bit as I felt the circle close. The bonds forming already - in a matter of minutes! But, my hands and slightly glistening nose gave away my nerves as I began to share myself with the group. I hoped they wouldn't notice but I know they did. I hoped it wouldn't matter or make me look unprofessional. I hoped, with all my heart, that I would be accepted. And there it was - Ahh - hello VULNERABILITY!

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This is where I was. Where I had to be. Exposed and vulnerable, yet doing what I wanted to do so very badly. Connecting and guiding and teaching. So with a deep breath, I accepted the uncomfortableness of it and just spoke my truth, trembling hands and all. I don't know everything that I said but I knew when I had finished that I was safe. These women made me feel so and I was grateful.

The rest of the blissful days glided by full of hard work and wonderful art! The women battled it out with their inner critics, we laughed and shared stories and helped each other solve problems in our compositions. I was at ease, in my role, soaking up the precious time I got to spend with each student. Carefully listening and helping to guide them through projects they could enjoy and learn from.

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They created pieces that pushed them out of their comfort zones, slipping into the unknown, the fear - where the good stuff starts to emerge. Where the left brain retreats and our intuition begins to lead us. The sweet spot. The flow state. I could tell from the class when people were going through it, they worked intently in silence, not pausing to judge or worry. Just moving. Creating. It is one of the most joyous things to witness as a teacher.

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Art time was interspersed with walks among the mystical places on the island,  like the Labyrinth where we silently followed the stones that wound us gradually to the center. And we all enjoyed the special Buddhist Bell that rings out after you have spun it just enough times while focusing on your truest wish and intention.

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Looking back on this magical weekend, I am so filled with gratitude for the opportunity. The chance to not only encourage others to trust themselves but a chance to step into my truest self as well. Each time I teach in person, I feel myself grow. Each time it gets less scary and every time I walk away knowing that this is what I am meant to do. It is where my JOY lives. If it means I have to push up against the vulnerability then so be it - I'm up for the challenge! 😉


 

A big thank you to our warm and gracious hostess, Serena Berry, who was nothing short of perfect - spoiling us with delicious food and ensuring everyone was comfortable. You made the retreat truly lovely and relaxing for our guests and for me too!

Thank you to the amazing women who attended! You each taught me something and inspired me with your open hearts and creative spirit. It was such a joy and honor to spend the weekend with you! I'll cherish the memories of this special time, always.

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Much love to you all!

xo,

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Summer Solstice Sale

Hello dear ones! I hope life has been treating you well! We have been busy over here in my little home, celebrating birthdays and Father's Day and TODAY is our 13th wedding anniversary! Woo! The longest and (most memorable day) of my life - so fitting for the Summer Solstice right?

To kick Summer off right we are having a 48 HR SALE on some of our best online ART workshops! Including my most recent class, Sacred Landscape which has been a huge success!

Are you ready to fill your long, light filled days with creativity?!

Enter Discount Code: SUMMER30 at check out!

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If you didn’t get a chance to take these workshops before, now is the time to scoop them up for an additional 30% off! Remember they are all self-paced, with life-time access and downloadable videos – so you can enjoy them on your own schedule. :)

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Happy Summer Creating! I'll look forward to seeing you in class!

xo,

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ArtWorthy LOVE!

Hello lovely readers! Happy Friday! I have been knee deep in production for my new workshop and I'm still reeling from my extraordinary experience a last weekend!

Many of you know, that I recently hosted my Art & Healing Retreat - ArtWorthy with my dear friend Trina Lee.

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We poured our love into designing this retreat to ensure a special, luxurious and heartfelt experience and it was well worth it! In fact, this retreat completely blew me away! I will be forever moved by the love I felt from each beautiful soul in attendance!

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From the location to the food, to the art making, to the remarkable healing - every minute was filled with magic and LOVE!

It was so incredibly rewarding to see the relationship between EFT and Art and how, by accessing our inner critic and inner guide (thru EFT, meditation and visualization) we could then move straight to productive and cathartic expression through Art!

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Trina and I had personally witnessed this connection but to then see it realized by a group was simply astounding!

We also began to observe how universal our inner critic is and how its message is rather unoriginal. Each woman was being held back by that critical voice but by actualizing it on paper it lost much of its power! This observation and practice brought all the women closer and truly created a safe and sacred space for healing and creation.

With the inner critic put in its place we could move on to celebrating and creating with the authentic self or inner guide! What joy flooded the room as we were able to embrace this all-knowing and all-loving aspect of ourselves. Soulful, beautiful artwork emerged and tears of joy and relief flowed.

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I will be changed forever by each of the women that joined us for this groundbreaking weekend.

I wish to send out my deepest gratitude to them all for coming on this journey with us. I also want to thank my amazing friend Trina for all that she did to help my dream become a reality! I can't wait for the next one!!

If you are interested in attending ArtWorthy in 2017 please click below to add your name to the list. You will be the first to hear about all future plans!

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Much love to you all!

xo,

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Giveaway Time!

Hello lovely readers! I know Mondays can be tough but I have just the thing to brighten your day. A FUN giveaway! This one is in celebration of our new online class called Inspired Collage by Petra Hrziwnatzki and it is packed full of goodies! The bonus is that these items are also on the supply list for the class! Woo!

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Let me give you a run down on these awesome prizes--->

  1. A gorgeous 12" x 12" pack of scrapbook paper by K & Company
  2. My favorite glue for collage - Golden Matte Medium 8oz.
  3. A sweet feather stencil 
  4. A pack of pastel hued Sharpie Paint Pens
  5. Tim Holtz - Thrift Shop Emphemera Pack (54 pieces)
  6. A set of 3 Adirondack Alcohol inks in pretty colors
  7. Elements Remnant Rub-Ons by Tim Holtz
  8. A beautiful large 12" mandala stencil
  9. One of Petra's favorite books - Start Where you Are by Meera Lee Patel
  10. A stunning set of 18 Martha Stewarts Craft paints (a fav of mine)

Pretty sweet right? Okay, you know the drill...

To enter to win this SHARE about the class on one (or more) of your social channels….i.e. Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram etc.

***Please use the image and link below to share on your social networks:

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Inspired Collage Link: http://ivynewport.com/inspired-collage

***AND THEN CLICK BELOW TO ENTER YOUR NAME INTO THE DRAWING!***

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Pretty easy right!?

 

I will be drawing the winner on Tuesday May 3rd! So stay tuned to see if you won!! Can’t wait to wrap up this box and ship it out to a lucky creative friend!

Thank you all for helping us share this event! You guys are the BEST!

xo,

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Poetry & Paint

Hello there and Happy Friday! Goodness! It's been so crazy around here! My ArtWorthy retreat is in just under two weeks, I'm in production on my new class , I spruced up the blog (it needed it) and well...I just got back from Mexico! I can't complain though because - truly it's all GOOD. Good crazy is just fine...right? I can deal with good crazy. ;)

I will be sharing pics from Mexico soon but I wanted to share some new work that I completed recently. These paintings kinda came of the blue for me...along with the words that followed. It always surprises and astounds me how much of our subconscious can emerge when creating art.

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This piece was inspired by the photography of Errikos Andreou. I just loved the pose. It spoke volumes to me. I used a mixture of charcoal, liquid pencil, acrylic paint and gesso to create this.

While trying to name this piece a poem came to me...

I hold the strands of my life. Ribbons of light, bone, blood. Memory. The tide has come in. Washed it all away. I am left with what remains.

It was both thrilling and a tad alarming to have these words spill from my pen onto the page. I am still slightly  unsure where these emotions came from...

Immediately after that one I created this piece -

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Again words accompanied the painting...

Clinging to the shore a tether to my heart. At once, I am engulfed beneath the waters. Silent. Reborn.

A third piece is in the works. I feel like a series has begun here for me - a new and exciting adventure.

Have you had poetry emerge with your art? I would love to hear about your experiences.

Have a beautiful and creative Saturday.

xo,

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My creative workshop on Bainbridge Island

Hello friends! How was your weekend? Fabulous, I hope. I was busy with the usual family stuff but I have to admit it was hard to stay out of the studio! I've been making so much art lately and it seems the more I make the MORE I want to make! Creativity truly does build upon itself!

Speaking of creative, I'm so excited to let you know that I've been invited by the lovely Serena Berry to come teach on Bainbridge Island, WA. I'm over the moon!

This Mixed Media workshop is called "The Intuitive Muse" and it's all about connecting with our inner creative guidance system and learning to trust our instincts when it comes to making our art! This promises to be a healing and nurturing event full of new discovery and exploration!

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It's going to be a truly special weekend! To read all about it head on over to Serena's site. Registration is now OPEN (only 11 spots available).

I can't wait to create with you!

Much love and gratitude,

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Crystal Neubauer Workshop

Hi there friends, Happy Friday!

I'm so excited to share about this fantastic workshop on Bainbridge Island, WA - March 11- 13, 2016! Come join me! There are only 4 spots left!! If you are not familiar with Crystal's gorgeous collages let me show you...

These textural, abstract collages are just dreamy to me. This girl knows composition!!! I love how she creates exquisite balance, contrast and tension! And all those gorgeous vintage element....sigh...

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I would love to see you there! I'm so thrilled at the opportunity to be the student instead of the teacher!

Much love,

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The Inner Critic and my Spirit Horses

Hello beautiful souls, How are you all doing? Spring is starting to show up around here. I adore all the sweet pink buds and daffodils! While the flowers have been blooming, I've been busy in the studio filming for my new class - Spirit Horse.

Let me tell you - these Spirit Horse are teaching me so much! I'm creating this class to give others the courage to create large Horse art and  WOW - I've found that my own courage is being challenged!!

My inner-critic has been on overdrive! I can hear her sniping at me - awful words and thoughts about myself. She's a real pain and while I usually can keep her at bay, she jumped me a couple of days ago and I felt like a complete failure. Yeah...she's not the most accurate voice in my head but she can be the loudest!

I decided I needed to drown her out and blast some music (Sia) and just draw like a crazy lady. Fast, (using the wrong hand half the time) and attack the page with charcoal and water! 15 drawings later...something emerged...something beautiful...something loving, something powerful!

The next three drawings flowed out of me. I cried the entire time (mostly out of relief and joy).

These beautiful Spirit horses arrived with such an overwhelming energy of love. It completely blew me away. I hardly knew what was happening.

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Once we can silence that inner critic our creative muse comes out to play. I am so grateful she didn't move out entirely!!

I encourage you to do this if you find yourself paralyzed by fear and self doubt it your art! Move your body! Dance! Sing! And then approach the easel with an open and gentle heart. See what emerges as your inner critic starts to quiet.

Share your art with me! I would love to see it! You can post on my Facebook page!

Much love to you all!

xo,

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ArtWorthy 2016 - behind the scenes!

Hi there! How are you doing? I am feeling quite refreshed, since I just got the lovely opportunity to get away for a few days with my dear friend, Trina Lee! We stepped away from our sweet families to work on our program for our sold out, upcoming art and healing retreat -  ArtWorthy 2016!

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It was a completely inspiring experience and I got to learn more about what it is to be an art teacher and creative guide! Not only did we wallpaper the  place with post-it notes as we organized our thoughts but we also worked through stubborn, creative and emotional blocks that we each were holding.

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Utilizing both Trina's expertise with EFT and my creative mojo, we managed to not only honestly face our Inner Critic but we also encountered our own creative intuition. By allowing the two to co-exist through the act of creating art, we moved swiftly through the fear and self-doubt and found ourselves happily immersed in the moment.

Trina emerged with beautiful, sweet owls...her spirit animal for sure! (She even got up early one morning and added that baby owl while I was still sleeping!!) This from the girl who says - "I don't paint!" ;)

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Some really fun and interesting art came out of this trip for me too! I got to capture my creepy inner critic...yeah...don't ask...let's just say that she's a royal pain in the a** and she stems from crippling experiences in my childhood. We all have a bit of her in us...even if we don't want to say so. She sounds like this for me "What are you doing?" "You know you are going to fail right?" "You are not strong enough to do that!" "Wow...you are really stupid!" ugh...yeah...

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However, after getting out that icky stuff, these loving spirit horses visited me and I painted them quickly and passionately with a feeling of unconditional self love - something I rarely (if ever) experience. It rocked me to my core! Primitive as they may be, they came from a place deep inside that lovingly accepts every single cell of who I am. Wowsers...what was going on? Meanwhile, Trina was bouncing around painting with joy! Some serious ArtWorthy magic was happening! spirit horses

Finally we tackled a quick, expressive and intuitive self-portrait that was aimed to reflect our essence and worthiness over realism. A reflection of ourselves without limiting beliefs! So yeah - I'm looking pretty happy, relaxed and uber confident with my birds and feathers. ;)

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Can you tell I only brought 5 paint colors!!? HA! I didn't think we were actually going to paint!

All in all, I was completely blown away by our experience planning for ArtWorthy. It was work- sure - but it gave back to us two-fold. Now, feeling more prepared and even more inspired, I can't wait to share the lessons, meditations, EFT sessions and more with our amazing ArtWorthy guests. Feeling so filled with gratitude!

Much love to you all!

xo,

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WINNER of the ArtWorthy Giveaway

Happy Friday everyone!! Just wanted to pop in and announce that the winner for the ArtWorthy 2016 giveaway is:

Karen Goetz!

Congrats Karen! I will be in touch with you so we can get that bundle of goodies sent to you!

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Also, wanted to remind you that there are ONLY 3 more days for the early bird registration price for the ArtWorthy Retreat! A savings of $100!

Plus, check out this beautiful new promo video we made for you guys! We are beyond excited and we only have 5 more spots left!

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Don't miss out on this amazing, healing and creativity filled journey!

Have a gorgeous weekend!

xo,

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New Amazing Feather Art Book

Hi there! Okay, so you guys know I have a thing for birds and feathers...I mean I even did an entire class dedicated to them - soooo when I saw this I kinda freaked out.

Artist and author Chris Maynard is truly gifted! His feather sculptures are beyond gorgeous...see for yourself...

  [youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eClZPg1ivIc]How completely stunning right?

Enjoy some more images of his spectacular creations and then go visit his site.

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Hope you enjoyed these!

xo,

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All images via here.

 

Art to Adore: Dominique Fortin

Good morning! I haven't done Art to Adore in a while and a weekend is always a good time to get a dose of inspiration right!?

So lately, I've been completely in love with the work of Dominique Fortin. Her artwork has a beautiful sense of innocence and wonder. Many of these images are of her daughter too which adds such a intimate quality. I also adore her limited palette. She has a fantastic balance of contrast and color. Her work is both delicate and bold! Love that!

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Beautiful right? Go visit her website to see more of her exquisite work. Now, go create something that makes your heart happy.

Much love to you.

xo,

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**All images by Dominique Fortin**

Outlander Art Retreat: Scotland

Hello my friends! I do hope you are well and that the holiday season is treating you kindly. I know it's crazy busy! We got the tree up early this year and the house is all decked out in lights and trim. So pretty!

In the midst of all the festive mayhem, I've been plugging along on a very, very important project of mine. A dream really....that has finally come to light. I've meticulously planned my first international Art Retreat for May 2017!!  Now, I just need guests to take along with me!

Who loves Art AND Outlander? Show of hands! Well, I do and I'm hoping some of you do too because that's what this Art Adventure is all about!

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I have found as an artist, that nothing inspires me more than travel and good stories! The Outlander books first captivated me (completely) when I was pregnant with my first daughter. I devoured the books and created art around the characters. I even named my second daughter, Claire. It's not a co-incidence!! ;)

A fan? Yup! A fanatic? Yeah, maybe but I thought why not combine two of my passions? A perfect excuse to travel with some like minded friends and see Scotland while creating art along the way!

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So who's with me? As Jamie would say..."Je suis prest!" (I am ready.)

If you want to read more about this extraordinary journey come check out the page here or click on the image below.  I've got a detailed day by day itinerary all planned out! It's dreamy!

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I hope to meet some of you in Scotland!

Happy Holidays and much love to you all!

xo,

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Art to Adore

Happy Friday my readers! Hope you have some lovely plans for the weekend! I'm actually going to go see Madonna!! Eeek! Kinda a childhood dream so I'm a little giddy! Anyway, before I break out in my Vogue dance...I wanted to share some more gorgeous bird themed artworks! I've been working non stop on my Flight & Feather  online workshop so yes, I have birds on the brain....big time!

Enjoy these beautiful and inspiring creations....and go visit these artists' galleries of work.

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Evening by Jeanie Tomanek

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Introspection by Alexandra Douglass

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Paperbirds by Steven Kenny

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Danielle O'Brien

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Lynn Watt

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Have a beautiful weekend!

xo,

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FREE Mixed Media Art Journaling Video

Hello my creative friends! How's the week treating you so far? I meant to get this to you yesterday but I'm afraid I got a little tied up wrapping the videos for the Paint & Pixels Online Workshop! I'm SO excited for class to begin! Not too much longer now...Sept 14th! If you haven't checked out the info on this Mixed Media & iPad Art class yet...go here for more info.

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So anyways...today is my birthday and in the theme of celebration, I wanted to give you a special treat! I've made a lovely FREE  Mixed Media Art Journaling Video for you - documenting my creation of the spread below. It's full of teaching and tips to get you creating in your art journal too! Plus, my little studio kitten, Leo makes an appearance. He is quite the art admirer. ;)

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I've been exploring Art journaling recently and it's been so enjoyable. What a wonderful way to explore, experiment and play all within my beautiful vintage ledger.

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To go watch to the video go here.

Please do share your creations too! I would love to see what you guys make! Feel free to join my student group on Facebook and start connecting with other creative souls!

Hope you enjoy the video!

xo,

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Art Love : Françoise de Felice

Hello friends, How are you? Spring is blooming all around us here in Oregon and it is truly so beautiful! My kiddos are finally all healthy (knock on wood) and we are looking forward to a trip to Disneyland for Grace's 8th birthday in April! The Claire Bear will stay behind this time with her grandparents, so the trip should be a tad more relaxing.

So, I'm still working through my Jeanne Oliver online art course where we focus on one master artist each week. It's been a very inspiring process! One week, our teacher was Kate Thompson and she introduced the artist, Françoise de Felice to us. Oh my! I'm in love. (Thank you Kate!) Her dreamy work is amazing...see for yourself...

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Stunning right? I adore the haunting, layered mystery of her work. I could stare at each piece for hours, visually deciphering the meaning behind the expressions and gestures of her subjects. Piecing together the story and admiring the interwoven patterns and textures, the subtly of color...sigh. I told you I was in love. Totally enamored.

What do you think of her work? If you LOVE it...I dedicated an entire Pinterest board to her. Check it out here to see more of her magical creations.

Hope you having a wonderful week.

xo,

Ivy

 

Love for Minted.

Hi lovelies! I don't often post on the weekend but this couldn't wait! I just discovered a treasure of a site full of beautiful artwork, stationary, journals and other paper pretties. I'm in heaven!

These days, curating is a serious business on the internet, with a plethora of endless choices it's so refreshing to see the cream of the crop all in one place isn't it? Well, that's what I love about Minted. They support creatives all over the world by selecting gorgeous designs and artwork and then make it easy for us to get our paws on all the goods! Love that. Sure they do custom photo cards and all that but what I really adore about this company is the stunning collection of artwork and stationary that is available! I literally spent a good chunk of my morning perusing all the paper goodness - my favorites list is rather long...

So, here are just a few of the things I had to heart!

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1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10.

So pretty right? If you are a sucker for lovely paper products and unique artwork like me - go check them out. I'm off to go order some custom journals! :)

Enjoy the rest of your weekend! It's a rainy one here!

xo,

Ivy

Happy Valentine's Day

Hello friends! Happy Friday and Happy Valentines's to you. I hope you are surrounded by the people you love. Hubby and I are going out for a much needed date night. Can't wait to get all prettied up and sip a fancy cocktail. I did splurge yesterday on a little gift to myself - this book - and I'm so pleased I did. I've already devoured half of it and I'm loving every page. If you were a fan of Eat, Pray, Love then you will LOVE Paris Letters by Janice Macleod. I'm so tickled with the book that I just subscribed to receive one of her magical, illustrated letters from Paris via her Etsy shop. Anyways...had to share this with you!

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Okay I'm off to get ready for my date....it takes a while these days! ;)

Much love to you all,

Ivy

P.S. I've been doing a ton of art so I promise to share more of it next week! More vintage treasures to show you too!

Dear Me...

Hi friends! Oooh baby it's cold outside! At least for us Portlanders. I am actually loving the crystal clear sunshine and frost laden mornings. It's like the very air shimmers with ice. So magical. I am praying for some snow! Thank you all for your beautiful, kind and thought provoking comments you left on my last post. I deeply appreciate you sharing.

Yesterday and today, I have chosen to put my household chores aside and focus on my art. Every time I do this, I am amazed at the incredibly comforting and joyous feelings it brings. I light my favorite candle, put on Pandora and just let myself escape into my creativity.

Today, was very introspective. I am still completing my Brené Brown homework - one exercise was to find photos of ourselves at different times in our lives and then write a message to "that" girl with the knowledge you have now. I chose my wedding day.

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What would you write to yourself now, looking back on those times when you were about to embark on a new journey? So young. So naive. Clueless. Unaware of all the challenges and joys that lay ahead. Blind to the outcomes.

I found this quite emotional and also very healing. It made my appreciate the trials I have been through. It made me glad for the hard days. The pain. The failures. The wrong thinking. It made me have gratitude for the wisdom I've gained and for the baggage that was sloughed off as I tumbled through my twenties, like a pebble in the tide. It was powerful to stand solidly on the shore and look back on those turbulent waters of my past.

Try this with a picture of yourself. It doesn't have to be an art project - just go for it. See what comes up. Be gentle with yourself. This exercise is meant to promote self-compassion so don't go yelling at yourself in a picture at some frat party, drunk or scold yourself for wearing that God awful outfit from the 80's or for not losing the baby fat. :) Write to yourself with love, with empathy, with kindness. Give yourself a mental hug. "That" girl in your picture probably really needed it.

xo,

Ivy

P.S. For those of you who wanted to take the Brené Brown class but thought they had missed it - they are repeating the first part so you can still sign up! I just signed up for Part 2! ;)