Wonderful weekend

I attended a wonderful workshop at Sally Jean‘s gorgeous studio in the Pearl. Her studio is heavenly and her personality and style is imprinted on every single square inch of the place. Spending time in her studio is an inspiring experience. If you haven’t already done so, pick up a copy of Where Women Create… you will be amazed. And Brad was the photographer! His photos are wonderful and he’s got a couple more spreads in the next edition. Great work, Brad!

The women in class were so very creative. It is always fun to meet new people and learn about their lives. Watching how others compose their artwork is always interesting. It was truly a pleasure to see everyone’s finished work. What talented artists! See for yourself…

I apologize I didn’t get everyone’s name to give them credit for their work. 😦

Going back to Sally’s lovely studio tomorrow for round two: soldered angel tree topper! Yippee!



Art & Soul recap

I had such a wonderful time at Art & Soul. It’s always over too soon. The people who attend are some of the most wonderful women I’ve met. And the classes are always great. I don’t know why, but I was extremely tired the whole five days. I was feeling foggy and slow; not creative at all. I didn’t take my camera so no pictures this time. And even though I tried as hard as I could, I felt disorganized. I did learn some things though and did create some things I’m happy with. But next year, I’m staying at the hotel!

my Gridlocked piece from class with Lisa Kaus

The best things were seeing friends again and meeting online friends in person. Oh, and of course, the shopping!

Anyway, if you want a different perspective of Art & Soul, wander over to these talented artists’ blogs:


Time flies by

I cannot believe that it is the last day of September. Where does time go? I have so many projects going on, it’s hard to stay focused long enough to finish anything. I have made some slow progress on my studio. I still have quite a bit of work to do but I’m getting there. I kind of veered off from the plan I originally worked out with Brandie. But since I’ve been taking my putting things away, I’m really optimistic about the finished product. My dad finished my work table but I haven’t painted it so it’s not in the room yet. I thought I’d post a couple pictures anyway.

when I want to solder, I'll put the fan in the window for ventilation

I got the greatest bins for my paper at the Container Store!

I've got to be the worst photographer but I sure hope it looks better in the first two pictures than it does here. What do you think?

some of my favorite things

I had this little settee outside but it was really getting dirty and fading. I spent more on it than I really should have and didn’t want it to get trashed so I brought it into my room. It’s not really functional  (although, three boxes fit nicely underneath) but it’s too cute and it makes me want to be in there. The doll is something I had made in my daughter’s likeness. The artist did a good job, I think. Amber was a little freaked out when she saw it.

I finished my trades for Art & Soul. I think I like the packaging better than what’s inside. 🙂

trades for Art & Soul

what's inside

A while ago, I dropped my laptop on the floor and the corner of my LCD cracked just a little. I managed to make it worse and now abut a quarter of my screen is not usable. I bought a new one but I don’t know if I should attempt to install it myself. I think I’ll be calling on my brother… time to cash in on all that babysitting.

I’m also working out all the final details for Deryn Mentock‘s JouJou Workshop. It is going to be a wonderful time. Good food, great people, and lots of fun. It’s also a time to learn something new and invest in yourself and your well-being. For me, it’s so important to persue activities that nourish my soul. When I surround myself with other like-minded, artsy-types, I feel an uncommon energy… a co-mingling of our strength… synergy… I’m sure you know what I mean. I hope if you’ve considered attending, you take this opportunity and savor the experience; you will not regret it. Please leave me a comment or send me an email if you’re interested in knowing the details. Hope to hear from you.

Art, art, and more art!

This coming month is going to be jam-packed with art. I cannot wait! On Sunday, the Muse Council (aka Washington County Mixed Media Artists) is getting together. These ladies are most talented and a lot of fun to hang out with. We’re going to be working on soldering.

Art & Soul starts this week. I’m taking the following classes:

Thursday & Friday: Step Into the Story–Jewelry Technique Workshop with Nina Bagley
Sunday: Gridlocked with Lisa Kaus
Sunday PM: Face Cabochons–Tricks & Techniques with Jessica Acosta
Monday: Charm School with Lisa Call

Check out the links. I can’t wait to see my out of town art friends. Laurel, Dede, Leslie, Keli, Kecia, and Zhulia will all be there. And there will be some other locals attending too: AllegraMelissa, and Michelle. On Saturday after shopping the Vendor event, Melissa, Diane, Dawn, (maybe) Sue, and I are going to get together for a drink. Too bad we didn’t plan ahead, it would have been fun to have a girls sleep over at the hotel that night.

The following week is my birthday. Not sure what’s going on for that but I’ll be 39 (again). 😉

Then the weekend of October 18 & 19, is Deryn‘s JouJou Workshop! That is going to be so much fun. There are still spots available so if you’re interested in attending, let me know! A juju is a charm or amulet with “magical” powers. The word “juju” is derived from the French word joujou meaning “toy” or “plaything.” In this class, we’ll spend a fun first day playing with charms. We’ll assemble all sorts of joujou charms and create a beautiful charm keeper pendant designed to hold them.

Deryn is a wonderfully talented artist; originally from Hillsboro, she now lives near Houston. Hurricane Ike devastated parts of Texas but Haiti has been particularly hard hit this season. Take a look at her blog to see the beautiful necklace she’s auctioning. She’ll match and donate the proceeds to charity: Double Harvest‘s Benevolent Housing Project to build housing in Haiti. Not only can you own a piece of original art to wear, you can help out people in need so bid, bid, bid!

Sunday evening already?

This weekend was very busy. I got a new cell phone on Friday and I am so happy with it. I had been with the same company every since I got my very first cell phone, which was more than 10 years ago. I get a nice corporate discount with the new company. And I’m on a plan by myself. *yay!*

I babysat my nephew on Friday night while my brother, sister-in-law, and niece attended a wedding. He is such a cutie; reminds me so much of my brother when he was a baby. Saturday, I took one of the dogs for a haircut. She came home with a bow in her hair… adorable! I tried to snap a picture of it but her hair’s so messed up, you can hardly see it now. I should take it out before it turns into a big knot.

I got together with some of my art friends last night. My friend Melissa gave a demo on altered books. She is so creative and I have admired her books for a long time but never started one myself until yesterday. It will be a good thing to work on when I’m not consumed by other things.

In preparation for Art & Soul, I made some charms this week, 104 to be exact. I finished them today and I’m really pleased with how they turned out. Now I just need to package them and I’ll be ready for trading. I can’t believe it’s only a couple weeks away! *yay!*

I ordered all the supplies for my classes that I didn’t already have, mainly sterling wire and metal clay. I’m glad the price of silver has dropped a little since I first thought about placing my order. I’m so excited to take some time off work, get together with friends, learn some new things, and make art. If you have never attended an art retreat, you should do it! It’s a wonderful experience. The energy when you have so many creative people in one place is awesome.

Have a great weekend everyone!

I am so excited!

Just got a note from Lisa Kaus about some new original artwork–love those mailing lists! I bought this piece:

Isn’t it beautiful?! I just love her work. Something about this just spoke to me. I never used to like yellows but I took a chance and painted my kitchen and powder room yellow and love it. Well, it’s not bright lemon yellow or anything… more like a golden raffia color. I am going to have to find a special place for this little gem. I cannot wait to find out what class(es) she will be teaching at Art & Soul in Portland.

Speaking of classes, I also got a note from Scrapbook Attack, which is a local scrap booking store. I was so excited to learn that they have booked Tim Holtz to teach a two day workshop in July. The details will be revealed in March. Such exciting news!


What a week this has been. Life at work has been a struggle for me but I’m not the only one. Morale is really bad right now and it makes it hard to stay focused. Jobs are being outsourced and off-shored and everyone feels insecure. On top of that, upper management seems oblivious and exempt from these issues. I am normally not a negative person but I’ve gotta work to pay the bills and it’s a constant worry if I’ll be next to lose my job. Sometimes it feels great to vent, so thank you for listening. 🙂

Now to more pleasant things. Tonight Steve and I are going to a semi-formal party. It’s downtown and I’m really looking forward to getting dressed up and going out. Steve has been dying for this pair of Tommy Bahama slacks and yesterday he broke down and got them. He loves clothes and shoes almost as much as I do. Unfortunately, shopping with him is almost as difficult as shopping with Amber… he takes FOREVER to decide on something.He also picked up a really lovely card for me. The card was nice but it’s what he wrote inside it that touched me:

Denise, I think of you at least 1000 times a day and tell myself how truly lucky I am and how special you are.

Wow, I think I’m pretty lucky too.

PS: A PLACE TO BARK INC has over 1200 donations and is in second place. To learn more, click here.