my birthday weekend!

Agnes & Ginger

I flew to Berkeley, California last weekend to spend my birthday with my BFF Ginger. We signed up for Flora Bowley’s Bloom True Workshop, so that we could spend the weekend playing with paint like little girls. We had so much fun, finger painting, eating amazing food, laughing, chanting & re-connecting.

Flora!

Flora has this fabulous ability to inspire everyone to find their own style within while showing all her tricks & techniques to paint intuitively. This is a very different approach to painting than I have been taught in all my instructing. It is how I began painting, but then found my way back this weekend. I loved how although it felt as if we may have been going down an endless path she gave a way to pull it all together in the end. I wished I could have spent a week with her, it was that easy, flowing & fun.

Now the trick is to jump back in & keep exploring what moves me.

this was the beginning

The way Flora starts us out by just making marks & having others make marks on our canvases. Then you take a look to see what is happening.

This is what started to emerge.

The Teahouse Studio

then we added lines

THis one is done

not quite done, but almost there

Ginger & I had a fabulous time eating incredible food that included brussel sprouts, mussels, smelt & rhubarb pie!!

rhubarb pie

this is what flora created

Well to wrap it up, I fully recommend a workshop with Flora, even if you have never painted nor do you want to paint. Her process is really a metaphor for life, letting go, waiting to see what emerges, having patience, doing the work, trusting, being okay to make a choice, commit to something, & oh my goodness! more & so much more. I don’t want to give it all away, but sign up, rush to sign up, she fills up quickly. You won’t be sorry.

I also recommend stealing away with your best girlfriend for a weekend of pure indulgence on your birthday!.

I love you Ginger, thank you for letting me be me & loving me in spite off it. :o)

Big Luscious Love,

Katariina

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the necessity of creativity . . .

This morning I had an easy stroll through a part of the Heights yet explored by me. It’s hard to keep a good pace when I see so much that needs to be captured. My creativity has reached a point of flowing so loudly, I cannot silence it, even if I wanted to.

 

like liquid fire

Creative expression is not a luxury for any of us, it is a necessity much like air, water, food, sleep, etc. It’s just that when we are out of practice of unleashing that need to express, it gets quiet & slowly dries up, yet it is still there, always there waiting for us to start noticing & then coaxing it back into a full flow again. That is where I am today.

But I know what it is like to have life, work & family take over where it feels as if there is no time or energy to express my creativity. I may have been busy, but part of me was dead, lifeless & I ultimately didn’t feel fulfilled or complete.

why just fence between these two trees?

I love my new iPhone for this purpose. I have a lot of cameras, from simple to complicated ones, but today my favorite is still the instagram app on my iPhone. It makes creating interesting, soul-full images easy, less time-consuming, with an instant result.

teal & grass green

I believe the best first step in recovering your creativity, is to start paying attention to what catches your eye. If it is a color, or a building, a contrast of two colors, a person, a crack in the sidewalk, the roots of trees, it hardly matters, but notice it, ponder on it, notice everything that draws your attention. Take photos of them.

Slowly that aspect of your inner being will start trickling a long with your interest in it, then it will give you more, open up further, wider until you won’t be able to stop it. You will need to write a story, a poem, take more photos, rip up paper, get out your pencil & doodle, sketch, paint, sculpt & dance. You will be filled with so much energy you can’t stop or slow down & there will never be a lack of ideas of what to create or express next.

three faces of red

love this polaroid app ~ shake it!

there is no need to be precious . . .

mini pizza box from Collinas!!!

Two mantras I’ve been creating by these days are, “There is nothing serious going on here!” & “Don’t be too precious!”

These both keep me light, child-like & in the realm of fun & open to so many possibilities that could flow in from just about anywhere. Nothing is off-limits in this realm. An old washer found on the street can be a pendant on a necklace, an old greasy pizza box can be a canvas, we can paint with our hands & tear bits of paper to make art.

This is the approach I took to my recent collages that I created on mini pizza boxes from Collinas. The first box actually does have pizza grease & a little sauce inside, but the second one I asked them for after I finished the first one and realized I wanted to make a pair. I chose a color palate out of one of my Sibella Court books, Nomad  for inspiration for the second one. The first one I was just using shades of blue & green to create a pseudo color wheel (which then after it was done made me realize it was the shape of a pizza – go figure!)

Pizza Box "not so precious" collage

The words read, “There is no need to be precious. Perfection is not required, nor ever sought after. Create to celebrate.” I borrowed the sentiment & re-worded it for this box from another design book called, The Homemade Home; living with art & craft by Mark & Sally Bailey.

This color wheel turned into a flower & an ode to Chipotle, with its burrito wrapper & chips bag. This one is my favorite. I had added words to it but didn’t like the look so covered up with more crepe paper (that was easy!).

So I used crepe paper, tissue paper from stores, silver paint pen, paper bags, burrito wrapper & masking tape! Then I went over the edges of all the tears & cuts with Tim Holtz walnut distressing ink & charcoal pencil. The first one also has blue chalk. I took the collage around the sides to create depth.

Color palette from Nomad; A global approach to interior style

I carried it over to the edges

Make one, if you feel so inspired & share the result with me! It’s fun, easy (if you use the tiny boxes), & great therapy!!! Come on & play with me & repeat after me, “no precious, no serious!”

Big Luscious Love,

Katariina

PS. Here are the cool books that inspire me again & again!

on my easel . . .

back to basics

This is a painting that sat & sat & sat on my easel while I tried different sketches but nothing seemed right. Then I painted over it with a slate oops paint & suddenly the possibilities blossomed into a monochromatic, chalk-boardy sort of image. It was different to highlight rather than shade on the nude – a completely different perspective.

Well anyways, here it is for your viewing.I called it Back to Basics (not sure why). I’m sure I’ll keep working on it because I always do, but wow, how different this is than my other paintings. I like that about it. If I keep creating everyday like this, I can’t imagine what my paintings will look like in five years – on my 50th birthday!!!! Woooo Hoooo!!!!

a closer shot

crow . . .

crow stamped on wood

I signed up for a Mono-type class for this semester. It’s starts in a few weeks. I’m so excited. In fact so giddy about it that I had to make my own crow stamp now, before the class starts. I just got this stamping rubber stuff at the Texas Art Supply & drew a picture & started cutting away. It’s so fun that I can’t stop stamping everything!!!

testing, testing,

above studio sink!

on beginning of painting

I’ve had this idea for making an american flag to hang outside on our patio fence. I wanted it to look old & add my style to it. As I started working on it further I decided that it would be a painting about the Marine Corps & war, but a light one. Really maybe it is more about how I joined the wrong Corps. I should have been in the Peace Corps instead. but I don’t know, I was probably right where I needed to be and odd duck. No regrets, some sorrow, sadness, anger, but no regrets.

Everyday as I gain more insight into who I am, really am, without influence from others, I move further away from those things that hurt me more than bring me joy. I seek out those things, people, experiences that are in alignment with who I am. This lessons the dissonance & increases the resonance. I don’t resonate with dissonance.

I visited a gastro doctor last week who told me that my colon was like a jazz band all the parts doing their own thing, not playing the same tune together. I guess Jazz has its place just not in my gut & not in my relationships or work environments.

make art not war

My stars are flowers. USMC is going off the canvas. 83 was the year I joined the Marine Corps. I wrote, “make art not war,” “all we need is love.” “love is all we need,” oh &
“war is never the answer.” Then of course, there is my crow.

Crow is the protector of the castle, the castle being your psyche. He also is a trickster & a shape shifter. Two aspects I love expressing. Tricksters make us think about things that are so firmly embedded in our beliefs that we don’t even think to question. I was a trickster in the Marine Corps.

This painting is about the healing & coming home to me, the me that was me before the Marine Corps.

 

sitting on my shelf

but does it sing?

I have a shelf in my kitchen/great room area where I set the painting I’m working on. I walk by it, sit in front of it, ignore it and sometimes drink coffee looking at it. It’s a chance for the painting to grow further under my skin and point out the little details it needs to be complete (well as complete as it will be).

Here are some more paintings I’ve been working on.

when whales fly

walk away

He loves me, he loves me not

Om Shanti

Now I know