Hi everyone and welcome to my first ever post in my first ever blog. I'm so glad that you found your way here.
I’m an art journaler and a mixed media artist delightfully entangled in the never ending process of creative learning. This blog will be a space for me to stretch my boundaries, experiment with new techniques, explore new genres, create with new products, and breathe new life into old vintage finds. And to share what I learn with you.
While I've been thinking quite a bit lately about projects to post in this blog, its been a challenge to know where to start. When I happened upon an old shoe box and discovered some hand painted shells lovingly wrapped in layers of old, crinkled tissue paper I knew I had found my answer: Just start at the beginning.
So here goes. One of my earliest childhood memories is watching my Great Grandmother decorate scallop shells. She painted each with teeny-weeny flowers that she made from itty-bitty, individually hand painted baby crustaceans that she picked out of colorful rows of teeny-tiny glass bottles with long slender tweezers. I'm pretty sure that that's when my obsession with crafts started. When I think about my Great Grandmother, I always remember the smell Duco Cement, and as Martha Stewart says, "It's a good thing."
Does anyone remember the Craft of the Month Kit? Every month we’d wait for the mailman to deliver ours. The most entertaining one was a distressed wood decoupage project. I'll never forget watching my normally quiet mother wielding a heavy chain with all of her might to beat up a poor defenseless piece of wood. (The neighbors thought it was quite a sight to see too.) There was always a craft project happening at my house. My mom made us matching outfits, decorated animal cakes, stenciled our family room wall, folk painted our furniture, and made bargello pillows. She taught me crewel. So it seems that my mom also needs to take major responsibility for instilling this creative bug in me.
Tucked underneath the shells, in that same shoe box I found some more of my mom's keepsakes including two Mother’s Day cards I’d made her as a child. The first one was made when I was in grammar school. My handwriting was terrible and the sentiment (“It took a lot of glue, but I made this just for you”) was pretty cheesy. Apparently, this card, my first foray into the card making world, was a mixed media piece, heavily influenced by Great Grandmother's shell art.
Notice below, that my hand writing had slightly improved when I made the second card in Jr. High school. But the cheesiness of the cards sentiment hadn't, ("Crewel may be your bag...but your mine"). A few things jump out at me about this card: What was I thinking? I should've paid more attention in my English class, and even back then I was breaking rules by stitching on paper, (although I do want to point out that I may have been way ahead of my time on that technique. Just saying...)
In the July 2017 Somerset Studio Magazine Mary Beth Shaw writes, “Perhaps we visit new media and explore diverse themes, but we always come back to who we are.” (Shaw, Mary Beth. “Stencils, Layering Silhouettes With Pattern.” Somerset Studio July 2017: 89.) Its so true. I’ll always continue to look for new ways to stretch the boundaries of mixed media and opportunities to break the rules. Its just part of where I came from and who I am. Only from now on, the "Infinite Possibilities" will be documented in this blog. I hope that you’ll join me on the adventure.