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Kate loves creating

Kate loves creating

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Monday, November 17, 2014

I am teaching at 21 Secrets Art Journaling Spring 2015 online class

I am thrilled to be a part of the Spring 2015 teacher line-up. Here are a couple of examples of my journaling style.


Sunday, November 16, 2014

Scotland and other adventures

I just got back from Scotland a couple of weeks ago. I attended Gillian Cox's week long workshop. If you aren't familiar with Gillian Cox (Gillian Lee Smith), well then please visit her website. I can't even explain the impact that it had on me. I went there, and because I teach, I felt like I should impress the other students at the workshop. We started out with sketching outside (oh no, my biggest fear)! I never got how artists could just go outside and sketch the most mundane images and make them look interesting. I couldn't even understand sketching something spectacular, especially when it comes to buildings (the dreaded perspective). So any ideas of impressing anyone went right out the window. It was then that I decided to be the student and learn; learn the things I didn't think I could learn. I wanted to leave this workshop with something new that I could use in my own art, not just a bunch of "my" work.
So here is my feeble attempt of trying to draw a landscape with some buildings.
Believe me this is one of the better ones! Yuck, so much to learn and could I learn it? Gillian helped me by explaining more about background , foreground, and midground and how to create that illusion. I got what she was talking about, but still couldn't apply it. When I got home I tried some more,

Not perfect but I was starting to get it. I have been wanting to create environments in my paintings so that my figures would be somewhere. I was so focused on the portrait and figure that the background was of no importance to me, but to create atmosphere, they need to be some where. I have a ways to go to understand perspective, but now I have the desire to draw what I see around me. I actually enjoyed drawing my patio, and will now start including drawing my environment as part of my artistic practice.
Here is some of the work I created in the workshop

I started this landscape with a figure during this workshop. It went through many stages of development

Now when I got home, I really changed it and find my style changing and developing even more

 I have worked on another piece that I like. Here it is.

One of the most important aspects of being an artist is to be a student. I will never stop growing; this will consume for the rest of my life!

I have a new online workshop that will be starting Nov. 24, 2014

I ALSO HAVE CREATED STENCILS!! My stencils can be purchased at Stencil Girl
Here is the link 

Saturday, September 13, 2014

I hate when I lose the magic of a piece!

So I have had a couple of months to just paint. Painting for myself on the weekends and during the week painting for my online workshops. I got back from Art Unraveled in August which was my first time and I loved the venue and can't wait to go back next year...but I digress. I seem to have a couple of styles. I love painting whimsical girls in splashy watercolors and I was really pleased with this little one.

She is painted on a fabric book cover. I always love to come back to this playful way of painting. I love drawing and love to draw on top of these watercolor portraits adding bits of collage.
I am working on an upcoming online class "A date with the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood. This is a painting I painted at the beginning of the year when the idea first came to me.

This is my interpretation of a Dante Rossetti painting. I am learning so much about this time period.
Here is my 2nd piece for the class. I first drew a picture of the lovely Jane Morris (wife of William Morris) and then made an image transfer to use as my underpainting. I thought it appropriate to design my version of a William Morris print and used that as wallpaper behind the figure. far so good! I am on a roll and everything is going great and then...........
I found this portrait by the incredible photographer at that time who worked with some of the same models as the Pre-Raphaelites, Julia Margaret Cameron. Google her work, she photographed the most incredible portraits. So I start painting and I like what I am doing.

I really wish I would have stopped here because I loved her expression, I loved the looseness and the unfinished look of the piece, but I thought I better get into some smoothing out and glazing and this is what happened

It became too smooth and I hated the glazing. I think it made it look dirty. I do love the background and the hint of a backyard with trees. I stopped filming for this class at this stage because the class was getting way too long. I had it sitting in my studio for a couple of days,and the first image I created haunted me and I wanted to get back to that place so yes, she called to me and wouldn't let me go till 8 hours later! I finally surrendered and realized I could not get back that original freshness. Note to not try to copy your own paintings. It just doesn't work. That is the magic part of have the craft and the practice going, but at some point the muse (being in the moment) takes over and THAT can not be repeated!

So this is where I surrendered! She looks haunted and exhausted which is what I was after working on her. She finally said 'Time to move on, you have learned what you needed to learn here'. So now I am exhausted but now know I can create like the first image I shared which is the direction I really want my work to go...but this painting was not going to be it. It is just a stepping stone. Heck, it really isn't about the's about the experience!

Friday, July 11, 2014

Making a living as an artist and this week I am part of a blog hop.

I have been teaching alot lately and taking a couple of classes for my own pleasure. I always dreamed of making a living as an artist but never really knew how to do it. Teaching involves alot of preparation, planning and organizing. Something I thought I never was really capable of doing and thought that it would take away from the creative process. I keep wondering how many hours should I put into actually doing art and whether the business of art would consume all of my time. At first, the time spent planning my classes, filming, editing, promoting, responding, traveling, would be an irritation to me, but I actually kind of enjoy it. I feel like I am taking care of business and that the pressure is off for the moment to produce a "masterpiece". I finally realized that being an artist isn't just about painting all day. I couldn't paint all day every day even if I wanted to. There needs to be that time of allowing the creativity to marinate inside until I feverishly HAVE to get into the studio and work it out. My work for my classes and art to sell takes up the work week but the week-end.....well, the week-end is my time to explore and go deeper in my own study as well as practice my craft. I like to go back to traditional drawing and painting techniques to keep me true, but that isn't my art, it's the craft that leads me to my art.
I have been taking a class with the brilliant Gillian Cox Unearth, Gather and Create. Here are some of my projects from that class.

I am part of a blog hop and asked to join. These are questions I need to answer so I will give it a go.
1.What am I working on?
I am getting ready to teach at Art Unraveled in Phoenix so I am working on several class samples of figures and portraits on vintage fabrics. That is my more commercial work. I am also in the early stages of more figurative work in church or cathedral setting. I  love doing figurative work but most of my prior work was rather flat. I am becoming more and more interested in atmospheric work and the idea of painting something and wiping it off and leaving a stain of what was there before.
How does my work differ from others of its genre?
I think the fact that I work on vintage fabric is probably the biggest difference. I used to be a textile designer in the apparel business and got my college degree in Fiber Arts so I always loved working with fabric. I started painting 5 years ago and was never drawn to canvas. I started layering fabric, adding gesso and venetian plaster and found this substrate glorious to work on!
Why do I create what I do?
I must or I will go insane is really the truth! I love to wake up and run to my studio to examine what I did the day before with fresh eyes. It is like waking up xmas morning! It is so thrilling when I am excited with what I am doing in the studio. If I have a dry spell, I almost go into a depression. Creating art is probably my drug of choice. I am a compulsive, obsessive person so having this as my focus is match made in heaven. I must create and when I can't create I must know that it is time to rest and refuel for the next round.
How does my writing process work?
I am not disciplined with my writing. It probably is the weakest link I have connected to my creativity. I usually write a blog post once a month. I always put it off but when I do it I feel so much better and I actually like most of what I write.
Here are a couple of lovely talented women I would like to introduce you to if you haven't met
Lori Scott 
Lorri Scott is a wearable fiber artist living in the Santa Cruz Mountains above Monterey Bay. Give her a dyepot and she'll magically transform silk fabrics, ribbons, and garments into fabulous colors using shibori, resist, vat dye and warp painting techniques. She is a self taught weaver, dyer, and clothing designer who has been published in Shuttle, Spindle & Dyepot, Belle Armoire, Somerset Wedding and Quilting Arts Magazines.

Kelly Berkey

Kelly Berkey is a professional artist, jewelry designer, and blogger. She is captivated by people and capturing emotion and the human spirit onto her canvas. She primarily works in oil, but loves to explore all mediums.
Her soulful approach to her work, love of mindful living, and journaling her experiences as she grows as an artist has made her blog a huge success. Her article The Authentic Self is published in the Live Out Loud Spring Edition of The Studio Voice.
Kelly has studied under artist Michelle Dunaway , is taking private lessons with Tina Garrett, taken college level art courses, numerous online art workshops, and purchases every painting demo she can get her hands on. She is always striving to improve her craft and is influenced by the great works of not only Michelle & Tina, but also Dan GerhartzJeremy Lipking, and Richard Schmid.
Kelly lives with her husband of 28 years in the beautiful countryside of Ray Co, Missouri, where they both have art studios. Together they share in the creating and running of their online jewelry store Berkey Designs.
Kelly's work has been collected throughout the U.S. and Internationally.

Be sure to follow them next saturday, June 19, 2013 as they continue this blog hop.
Galia Alena

Light chaser, wanderlust gypsy, clay slinger, paint splasher, word crafter, sacred journaler, beauty unveiler, adventure seeker and soul feeder.
Galia Alena is a “coeur”ageous pioneer artist with a poetic vision exploring intuitive wisdom. Her images evoke tranquillity and infinity, coaxing the viewer to participate into the self-exploration which successfully ties the lyrical to the universal. They reflect an understanding of mythical and archetypal wisdom common to us all, yet from a supremely vulnerable individual perspective. “It is through my creative practices that I feed my soul and return to myself always afresh." She is a photographer by trade and mixed media artist by practice and shares some of her gifts in several online courses or in live groups: &

Thursday, May 29, 2014

My New online class -Fractured Angels

I am getting a great response for my new class online. I have been so busy the past couple months teaching live and traveling, it was nice to get this project finished and up and running. I have learned so much from online classes myself and I try to keep the group interactive with lots of posting and conversation. It brings so much to an online class. It really creates a lovely community. I learn the most when the students are engaged and inspiring each other and that is what I hope to create for this class. I have a private Facebook page for students and myself to post and interact and I am available for critiques if requested. I understand some students are not comfortable with that and I respect that,  If you feel more comfortable, I am available via email to offer that service.  Critiques are a beneficial process to improvement.
All the videos are up and it is a self paced class but to keep the class alive and current, I will be working on a painting and sharing each week videos and images of my progression and if I struggle with it, all the better. Not every piece goes smoothly and sharing that struggle is so important.
Here are the images that I will be demonstrating in the class. Hope to see you there!
To learn more about the class go to . You need to become a member of this ning site (it is free) before you sign up for class.

I also have a link on this blog, top right hand side