Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Tatianas New Dress

I'm back to my blog now that the holidays have had their way with me! Everything was so busy I couldn't squeeze even an extra minute or two out of life, but now, breathe in...breathe out... I'm back!

As many of you know, I was recently added to the roster of fantasy/fairy artists involved in the ever growing Enchanted Visions Project. Check out my Nov. 17th blog entry for more details on the project. I finished my first contribution to the project and submitted it at the beginning of December. They usually have a theme that is a word or phrase to inspire the artists to come up with something based upon that theme, but this time they tried something new. We were given three stock photos from and could choose one (or more) to use as inspiration. When I looked through them, this one caught my eye. I thought,

"That model really likes that dress she's wearing!" How would I know that? Well, my daughter Brittany got married a couple of years ago, and I recall chatting with the sales lady while she was trying on dresses. She told me that you can always tell when it's "the" dress, because they look at themselves, and they smooth the dress down over and over with their hands, I watched the brides, and she was right, the dresses they didn't like, they didn't even touch with their hands hardly at all, the more they liked the dress, there would go the hands! So this photo made me think of that day. I decided that she would be a fairy in a really lovely dress, a new dress fit for a queen. So I thought, why not make her Queen Tatiana from Midsummer Night's Dream?!

I had never worked from a stock photo before, so that was kind of a fun new world for me. I usually take my own reference photos, but it really was neat seeing all of the wonderful photography lisajen had there for the plucking! She asks for the artist to give her a credit line (fair enough) and of course a link back to her deviant art site where her photography is posted. That's all I ask from people who want to use my artwork for their websites, so it seemed very fair to me.

I opted to reverse the image in Photoshop to begin, I gave her very platinum blonde hair, and imagined a dress and crown fit for a fairy queen. This was a really fun project, I really enjoyed it, and I'm happy with the outcome. I have her posted in my Etsy store as prints, and watch for her to be added to Crystal Art Pendants, compact mirrors, coffee mugs and more!

Glad to be back in the blog!

Blessings for a wonderful New Year, and watch for a new Magical Monday Movie Post, next Monday!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

The Steampunk Fairy is Done!

The Steampunk Fairy is done! This one was really a fun piece to create, she has a totally playful attitude sitting on her "paper moon" set, which I based on old Victorian designs of antique paper moon photos that were very popular from the turn of the century up into the 40's. although the Vernian looking rocket-ship was my own addition. I'll have her available in my Etsy store soon, both as prints and gifts!

I hope you enjoy my new fairy, more to come in the future.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

I'm Now a Contributing Artist to the Enchanted Visions Project!

I got some exciting news today! I have just found out that I've been accepted to be a contributing artist to the Enchanted Visions Project! What's that? Well, it's a creative endevor that was originally concieved by legendary fantasy/fairy artists Jessica Galbreth and Amy Brown. The idea was that they would challenge each other every month by agreeing upon a thematic title for a piece of art, then both artists would create their own artistic interpretation of the theme. Artist Coriander Shea Detwiler was inspired by the project and joined as well. Coriander has since facilitated the project as something that select other artists can contribute to as well. It's really fun to look through the themes and see what different artists envision when given a theme. It's a great opportunity to be creative, and join in with other talented artists to create some very interesting galleries.

I felt very honored when I found out that I'm included as a new contributing artist. So I recieved my first theme, and hope to finish something before the deadline which is the end of the month to be posted for November. The idea is to create brand new pieces, not send in work that is already done that might fit in with the theme, so I don't have any art included yet, but plan to very soon.
I'll be sure to post my new contribution when it's finished. Watch for my new steampunk fairy later on today!

Friday, November 12, 2010

Freebee Holiday Gift Tags on My Etsy Store!

We have a really fun special in our Etsy store for the month of November! I created these designer gift tags, I'll be using them on all my gifts this year for sure! So I put them all together on a digital file that you can print as many as you need yourself on your choice of paper. With any purchase in the month of November, we'll email you this file and you can print all of the gift tags you need for your gift giving this holiday season!

Here are the ones I printed out myself last night, they turned out pretty nice!

I made a little holiday gift scene showing gifts, as you can see the tags are a good size, so there's plenty of room to write on, plus if you really need a smaller tag, you could easily re size them.

Of course, as soon as I started setting this little photo shoot up, Willow the cat had to get right in the middle of everything!
Have a great weekend!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Steampunk Fairy: A Work in Progress

I had an opportunity to work on this one some more last night, in fact I was looking forward to it all day. Once I got into it, I was having so much fun, I didn't want to stop, I was working on it past midnight. Still a lot to do, the skirt has a pattern with lots of detail, so that will take a lot of time. Anyway, here it is so far, I thought you might enjoy seeing where she's taking me, she's really developing a life of her own. In case you missed the first post with the sketch and the inspiration behind this piece it's two posts below this one or, click here!



Monday, November 8, 2010

Steampunk Fairy Sketches

During the turn of the century, "paper moon" photos became very popular. The moon was cut out so that people could sit on the moon to have their photo taken, ladies, couples, even whole families would get their photos taken posing on these celestial sets. I think they're charming!
I wanted to draw a Steampunk Fairy, and I decided to take the inspiration for my new piece from these whimsical old photos. Sunday we turned our clocks back, and I used that extra hour to go back in time, and revisit not only and old photography tradition, but also a time that never was and created this sketch for my new Steampunk Fairy! I hope you like her so far.

Below is a detail shot of the Steampunk Fairy Sketch

Join me later for my pick for Magical Monday Night Movie!

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Midnight Ice Fairy: A Redoux

I had an old piece of art on the wooden art table this weekend that I wanted to share with you! Back in 2004 I did this piece I called The Ice Fairy, I really liked the pose, she's enchanting sitting up there on her snowy branch blowing ice across the land on a winters day. There were a couple of problems with the Ice Fairy though. One was that there was simply not very much contrast, with so much white from the fairy herself, the overcast sky, and the snow on the branches, she just never really "popped." The other problem was that my vision for her wings, and how they turned out really never really pleased me. At the time, I just left it as is and never really fiddled with it. In my head I visualised her with wings that looked like frost on the window, but what I ended up with looked kind of chunky and really didn't have much grace. But at the time, I just went on to the next and left her as is.

Dan and I were pulling together all of my winter pieces to press onto these sweet little porcelain ornaments that we got to dye sub on when we looked at The Ice Fairy. "Yea, I was never really happy with how that one turned out." I explained. So Dan suggested, "Can you change it, what would you do differently?" When I told him there just isn't enough contrast, so she doesn't stand out, he said, "What if the scene was at night and the sky dark and full of stars?" Epiphany!
So I mocked it up in Photoshop to see how it would look and we both agreed, it was a huge improvement. So I got to work with the pencils and paint this weekend! I really had fun with it, I changed her hair, ears, added more contrast to the entire figure, and added a starry night sky, changed to sun behind the clouds to a moon with a ring around it. I also did away with her old strange chunky ice wings and gave her delicate graceful iced wings that fit in with my original vision. Who says you can never go back? Sometimes you can. I hope you enjoy the before and after pictures of what I'm now calling Midnight Ice Fairy! She'll be available in my etsy store as prints, cards, and ornaments very soon!


Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Remarque Prints for St. Louis Witches Ball and Masque

Hi All,

Well I go super swamped here and missed our Monday Night Magical Movie date! I'll have a new one for you next Monday, so no worries. But here's one of the many things that kept me away from the popcorn this week.

Every year there is a really fun event here in St. Louis, the St. Louis Witches Ball and Masque, which Dan and I usually attend. It's a nice time, dinner, dancing, upscale attire and masks, very fancy. This year we are unable to attend, but I wanted to send donations along for the silent auction which raises money for the next years ball and also for the St. Louis Pagan Picnic, basically to help keep these great community events happening. Dan and I love the St. Louis community, so we decided that we should send something special.

I recently saw artist Stephanie Pui-Mun Law's "artist's remarques" that she was adding to some of her matted art for a show, and I loved the idea. A remarque is a small, personalized drawing or symbol that an artist adds to a print, the presence of a remarque increases the prints value. They come from the old days when printing was done with printing plates, the artist would add a small sketch to mark the stages of the process. Of course now many of us artist print digitally, but it's nice to revisit this idea and make a print or set of prints extra special.

So Dan printed one 5 x 7 of each of my four Celtic Tree Fairy prints, we added a mat and frame, and I hand drew with pen and ink artist remarques on the mats. It was a fun project and for a really good cause too. I packed them off this morning, but not before snapping off a few pictures so that you could see them! So anyone out there with tickets to the St. Louis Witches Ball and Masque, you will have the opportunity to bid on these unique pretties.


Friday, October 22, 2010

The Celtic Full Ivy Moon

The moon is full tonight, and according to the Celtic Tree Calendar devised by Robert Graves, it's the Ivy Moon. The Celtic Tree Calendar is a lunar calendar based upon the first 13 Celtic Ogham letters and their tree correspondences. Poet Robert Graves studied the Ogham and in his book The White Goddess published in 1948, he put forth the idea of a calendar that corresponded with the Celtic Trees. There are several versions of this, I like to work with the Graves version. According to Graves, "I noticed almost at once that the consonants of this alphabet (Ogham) form a calendar of seasonal magic, and that all the trees figure prominently in European folklore."

The Celtic month of Ivy/Gort falls between Sept. 30-October 27. During this month, the harvest is coming to an end, everywhere I look here in the Midwest, I see fields that are bare now, just stumps of corn, wheat or other crops, and the crows are out picking up whatever is left. The Ogham letter Ivy/Gort brings the promise of the inner self and the spiral of life.

This is the Ivy card from my upcoming Voice of the Trees deck, Sept. 2011.

The Ivy plant produces spiral shapes reflecting the spiraling patterns of DNA, the gifts given to us by our ancestors. This is the time to remember the spiraling life within you, where it came from and meditate on where it can take you in life. As you look up at the full Ivy Moon, remember that you ancestors looked at that same moon and be reminded of your ties to them. Think of the positive attributes that you have, family traits that serve you well. Can you imagine how far the genes you carry within you have traveled through the ages to form the person that you are?

English Ivy is evergreen reminding that even as the world beds down to take it's rest, life still remains. Ivy also represents tenacity of spirit, Ivy is a plant that can grow through stone, even when faced with the rocky barrier of a wall, it perseveres, hangs on, and thrives. It looks delicate and lovely, but this description would be a
underestimation of this tough tenacious plant that is a true survivor.

Photograph: The Ivy Wall Copyright Mickie Mueller 2004

Draw upon the power of the Ivy Moon to connect to your ancestors, as well as looking deep within and communing with the self. Cooperation with others, protection and banishing negativity are also facilitated under the Celtic Ivy Moon.

This beautiful Ivy Pendant from lovebellajewels on Etsy!

For anyone interested, I also wrote 13 Celtic Tree Calendar magic additions to Llewellyns 2010 Witches' Datebook, and although 2010 is on the waning end of things now, (it's on sale!) all the magic and much of the other info in the datebook can be used in years to come as well.



Thursday, October 21, 2010

Aziza Fairy Queen, Mostly Done!

I've been working slowly on this one, but now she's almost finished, really just a few tweeks here and there and she'll be officially done!

I worked on it last night for awhile, and took a photo this morning so that you could see, of course Willow my art kitty had to get in the photo! I'm at work, and I would bet money that she's sitting right in the middle of Aziza looking out the window!

Believe it or not, I did some of the details in her skirt with my left hand! I'm having a little hand problem currently, the back of my hand between my thumb and forefinger is swollen slightly, but things like turning my car key, opening doors, etc. really hurts and makes me exclaim, "oooohh! It may be a tendon thing, I'll be seeing my doc soon to have him check it out.

When I was a kid I broke my right elbow and discovered that I can use my left hand with a certain amount of accuracy, albeit a bit more slowly. I told Dan last night that I was drawing with my left hand, and he said, "Oh, that's not good." He looks after me and take great interest in my work as my husband, marketing manager and logistics wizard. So I grabbed a little scrap of paper and wrote, "Lets see how well I can write with my left hand."

...with my left hand. When I handed it to him, his eyebrows went up, and he muttered a sound of approval. It wasn't perfect, but my penmanship isn't great anyway. I have many tricks in my hat!

So I hope you enjoy this noble looking African fairy, I had so much fun working on her. Her wings are that of the African Monarch butterfly, I just love the warm rich colors!



Saturday, October 9, 2010

Aziza Fairy Queen, A Work in Progress

I'm really having fun with this fairy, I wanted to share my progress so far, I've got her costume and wings to work on still and details in the background. Olivia is coming over today, so I don't know how much I'll get done, but here is my new fairy coming to life!

Fare Thee Well,


Thursday, October 7, 2010

A New Fairy Sketch: Aziza Fairy Queen

Greetings Friends!

I wanted to share the sketch of the new piece I'm working on!

I enjoyed doing my Celtic fairies so much that I decided to explore the fairy realm further, looking into different cultures, when I discovered a fairy tribe that lives in Africa called the Aziza. They are helpful fairies, blessing hunters with good luck, and passing on practical knowledge and spiritual wisdom to the people. They live in the forests near Dahomey in west Africa. They seem like Good Fairy Folk to have around!

I think this noble queen will be standing on the edge of an African forest, her wings were inspired by the African Monarch butterfly with beautiful shades of browns, tans and creams. To invite the blessings of the Aziza to this piece and bring inspiration as well I'm enjoying some excellent African music on Pandora radio, the the mbira is one of my favorite African instruments, it's so healing. I'm sipping bush tea (roobios) in the studio this week. Mmmmm. As Mma Precious Ramotswe says in the No 1 Ladies Detective Agency, "There's no problem too big that can't be solved with a cup of bush tea."

I also discovered that they have fairy rings in Africa! These rings aren't mushrooms though. They are in the plains near Namibia. They are circular depressions with no vegitation growing in them, but sometimes the grasses around the outside gets quite high. Scientists have been researching the phenomenon for 25 years, but no one can figure out what causes them!

I'll work on Aziza Fairy Queen some more this week, new pics of this work in progress coming soon!



Wednesday, October 6, 2010

The Winner of the Fairy Tote Bag is...drumroll...

Olivia came to my house for dinner last night, I made a lovely pot of stew and some crusty bread, it was delicious.

I have a very scientific method for doing the drawing for the tote bag contest, it is as follows. I printed out all of the entries, and I folded them up really small. They went right into my wonderful metal colander. Then I stood the baby and the colander in the middle of the room. Olivia, curious about the big strange metal bowl full of papers, marched right over and began playing with them. She pulled one out of the colander which immediately went into her mouth, as expected. She liked the taste of it, because when I snatched it away to get the name and email address, she tasted all of the rest, it was great fun!

So who was the first entry to be covered in baby drool? Why it was witcho2o752! Contact me right away with your address, so I can send your Tote Bag, you have 48 hours!


I hope you love the bag, and thanks so much to everyone who entered, I will do more givaways in the future, so don't dispair, and Oliva thought everyones entries were quite tasty!



Friday, October 1, 2010

Fairy Tote Bag Giveaway!

Hi Dears!

I can't believe it was a year ago tomorrow that I held my little grand baby Olivia for the first time! It's her birthday tomorrow, and Brittany's planned a party in the park with a charming lady bug theme! It was also Brittanys birthday yesterday, so how cool is that?! I made a huge bowl of pasta salad with fresh herbs from the garden, and I'm bringing two of those awesome beef briskets from Sam's Club that Ellie and I picked up today. All I have to do is toss them in the roaster tomorrow morning.

I was working on Brittany's gift when it occured to me that it would be fun to celebrate little Olivia's first birthday birthday here at the Old Wooden Art Table too, with my first blog givaway!!

I'll be giving away this beautiful tote bag made right here in our studio featuring my "Mother and Child of the Fae" art. This lovely tote is great for shopping, carrying books, papers, or other goods. Made from 100 percent white stain resistant canvas, this fabric feels really nice to the touch, and has a tight heavy weave, a durable finish, and sturdy stitching. It features 2 strong black handles. Most of the time you can just wipe it off with a cloth or sponge, but you can wash inside out in the washer if needed. It measures a generous 16.5 x 16.5 inches and has gussets on the sides to handle quite a bit of cargo.
The design is printed right in my studio and then hand pressed onto this handy tote bag.

How to enter the giveaway (mandatory)
It's easy to get in the drawing. Follow these three easy steps:
*FIRST follow my blog publicly using Google Friend Connect, you'll find that on the side bar of this website, on the right.
*THEN visit my Etsy shop, click here
*LAST post a comment below this post, letting me know that you're following me publicly and tell me what your favorite item is in my Etsy shop! Easy, right?
***put your email address in your comment so you can be notified if you win.

That's all there is to it! You'll be entered in the drawing to win the tote bag. Easy Peasy.

If you've already entered by the method above you can get bonus entries too...

1 Bonus entry for Facebook Friends!
* FIRST add me on facebook if you haven't already...
*THEN share a link to this blog on your facebook!
*LAST Leave me a comment below letting me know that you shared the link on facebook and you'll get 1 extra entry... include your facebook link in the comment or it won't count.

3 Bonus entries for Bloggers!
*To get 3 bonus entries in the drawing, blog about this giveaway on your blog and you must include a link to this contest post.
*Then comment below and let me know you posted a link on your blog, and you'll get 3 extra chances to win. Make sure you add the link to your blog to then comment or it won't count.

Super Important for everyone!
Put your email address in your comment so I can contact you if you win!
The Giveaway will end Monday October 4 at 4:00 pm central time. If you enter after that time, it won't count. The winner will be notified by email and will have 48 hours to respond, or a new winner will be chosen.
The winner will be chosen by Olivia's little fat baby hand randomly since it's her birthday giveaway! How fun is that? We'll take a picture!
Sorry, this giveaway is open to US only!

*How to add a comment to this blog
Some of you who are new to blogger might have trouble finding the comment button, I had trouble finding it on my daughters blog too, so don't worry. Look right at the bottom of this post, right below the three square pictures with the caption "you also might like:"
Click the link that says"dropped a note on my art table"

Good Luck!!


Friday, September 24, 2010

New Crystal Art Pendants Coming Soon

Hi All,

I wanted to share the first pictures of our new Crystal Art Pendants! We just got these new dye sublimation blanks in yesterday. We print the artwork out small, cut it off the sheet, position the art on the back side of the crystal blank. Then we press it in the heat press and the ink transfers to the specially treated back side of the crystal. The first one broke, but once we got the pressure right, these pendants turned out really great. The size is just perfect, 1 inch wide x 1 1/2 inch tall, with a beautiful silver tone bail. The beveled edges are faceted adding a bit of sparkle, and we were really happy with how the art looks shining out from behind the 1/4 inch thick pendant.

The only one I have a picture of right now is a gift for my sweet Mar Mar. We planned to press a bunch and get pictures up on the Etsy store, but Mar Mar ended up in the hospital yesterday, so that is a priority. So we wanted to press one for her, I put it on a chain and we'll be bringing it to her in the hospital later on today.

We might have more pictures taken, and put some of these on Etsy this weekend depending on how things are going. I hope you enjoy these pictures until then!

Happy Weekend!

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Pagan Pride Day Cancelled Due to Weather

Well, it is Missouri after all. All week I watched and it looked like it would be overcast but warm, perfect weather for vending at an outdoor festival on a lovely Autumn day. But in the words of famous Missourian Mark Twain, "If you don't like the weather, wait a minute!" Yesterday the forecast changed and we've had thunderstorms since last night!

Dan and I angished over the decision, because we knew people were expecting up to be there, but we had already lost some merchandise (and a little pride and sanity) in storms earlier this year, so we had finally come to the decision that bringing all my artwork into a thunderstorm under a metal tent was a bad idea. Shortly afterwards we found out the event had indeed been cancelled. I felt some relief because I really hate cancelling out of people, but I'm sad for the event planners, they put so much work and money into these events, and it's a shame to see it happen to good people.

They'll be rescheduling, and I hope to be able to attend for the new date.

And such is the world!

Blessings, and stay dry,

Friday, September 17, 2010

Going to Mid-Missouri Pagan Pride Day This Weekend

We are packing up all our lovelies because we were invited to Mid-Missouri Pagan Pride Day in Columbia MO this weekend. The event will be held in Peace Park Sunday September 19, from noon-6pm, there will be workshops, shopping and art show, and lots of fun. Other authors appearing include childrens writer and illustrator Lyon Martin, mystery and suspense writer M.R. Sellars and Joyce and River Higgenbotham. They'll also have music by Elven Drums and Wolf.

This is a free event, but they are asking for canned goods to be donated that will go to local food pantries, funds will also be raised for a no-kill animal shelter.

I'll be doing a workshop on my upcoming Voice of the Trees oracle deck, it's a fun workshop. This is basically an extended version of what I do when friends and family come over and visit my studio and I bring the art for the cards out and lay them on the old art table and go through the artwork and talk about what the cards mean, and the stories behind the inspiration for each piece. Of course the originals are at Llewellyn right now because they are working on getting it all together for publishing, but I have full size copies of the art to show.

Dan and I are also packing up all of our items found on our Etsy shop and even more to bring out and offer for sale. I even have a few of my Triple Goddess statues and some of my sterling silver jewelry too. Dans updating the computer so we can take credit cards while we're there, I know I don't ususally carry much cash, and we found that people really appreciate that we can take cards. It looks like our Etsy store exploded in our livingroom!

Well, it promises to be a great time, any of you Mid-Missourians in the area, drop in and say hello! We'll post some pictures on Monday.

Here are some of our candle sconces waiting to be packed.

Loads of tote bags