Sunday, August 30, 2009

Sunday Art Work

Here is a peek at a painting that I've been working on.
I am not pleased with it (she won't let go of her mascara...)
but she is going in a good direction.

I'm really trying to get things lined up to begin offering transfers of some of the faces that I draw.
I thought that maybe some people would like to have a face to paint themselves...without having to draw one.
Can't draw but like to paint, or want to learn to paint?
Then this would be the thing for you!

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Thursday, August 27, 2009


OK - Here are a couple more really fast sketches.
I was sitting on the front porch, waiting for the Gold Finch to come back and began sketching things around me.

Here's the Gold Finch. Sitting on (mostly) dead cone flowers.
They really love the seeds, so leave your dead (and dying) cone flowers there for them!

There is a teeny tiny little section of a fern that my son gave me for Mother's Day.
(oh, BTW, he says that he is doing "fine mom" at school...)
I did cry (just a tiny bit) today thinking about him.

I was reading Mystele's blog entry and the flood of memories washed through me...
Our babies grow up so fast, don't they?
And the tears were not just for my son - all those memories made me think about my mom too.
Wishing things had of been different, wishing this and that.
And then realizing, after reading this post (on finding your sparkle again Aug.20), that the time had come for me to be lighthearted again.
I have been so consumed with handling matters after the death of my mom, and consumed by family members that lie, cheat and steal that I feel like I have lost my "light hearted-ness".
I want it back.

I am going to take it back.

Wow- did I totally get side tracked?!?
And that, my friends, is JUST how it happens with me!
I can see my husband and friends laughing and shaking their heads right now...agreeing with me...
(I really DO do this a lot - get side tracked, that is)
OK - back to the sketches...

This page is just kinda a mix of what I saw with my eyes and what I felt with my heart.

The one on the lower left hand side is a teeny tiny portion of a seed head on a Purple Fountain Grass plant on our porch. I love those plants.
The seed heads bow gracefully in the breeze - swaying to summer's last afternoon dance...
The one at the top left is a section of another plant (name?) on the porch. I liked the spiked appearance of the seed pods.
And last, but certainly not least, is a picture of the tender roses that my hubby gave me.
I invited you to watch with me as they opened their tender little petals to us.
This is their final glory.
All thick and full and beginning to fade.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009


My husband knows how much I love getting fresh flowers,
and having them in our home just brings this...I don't know, this tenderness to each room that they are in.
This weekend, he brought me some beautiful roses.
All goldenrod, yellow, orange, apricot colored...just beautiful!
I was taking pictures of them each day - watching the progression of how they open and show more luscious colors...
enjoy this with me.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Art School

This weekend, my husband and I moved my son off to Winthrop University to go to art school.
How exciting is that?
How scary is that?
How awesome is that?
Three questions - one answer...

My son has worked very hard to get to the point that he is at. He worked full time at a manufacturing job this summer, saved his money and went the last two years to a technical school to save us all some money.
He took all of his entry level education classes and most of his "free" classes there too - all to save money. And that was his idea. He was so smart to do that. I know that he wanted to go on to "regular" college with his friends but he knew that that the "logical" thing thing to do was to commute from home and take the classes at a fraction of the cost. His education is completely paid for up to this point and he is entering Winthrop as a junior. He transferred 46 credit hours into the art program.
He is thinking about Elementary Art Education as the final goal.
But the first year is going to be full of glorious art classes.

Anyway, I think that I did pretty good.
(well - this IS my only child, ya know!?!).
I didn't "boo hoo" or embarrass any of us.
Not too bad, anyway!

There is so much more that I could write about this day but I am tired.
My house is a wreck after trying to go through things to see what he might need/want and
I'm hungry.
The most important thing being that
I am hungry...

Have a blessed evening everyone.
Hug your kids.
Kiss your spouse.
Be nice to everyone.
It just makes everything a little easier for everyone, ya know?

Thursday, August 20, 2009

August sketches

I have always love to draw, to put pen (or pencil) to paper
and leave my mark.
My vision of what I see...
whether it's a one of a kind thumbnail from nature,
or my take on a famous painting or drawing.
My son seems to have the same desire...or fire...or ability.
Take your pick.
We could be left alone for hours with nothing more than a sketchbook and a pen and
we. would. be. cool.
Ask my husband (yep, Mr. Wonderful)
(the one that buys me all those cool sketchbooks and pens!)
(and totally fills my soul)
(forgot to say this - right before the (yep,) part)
did anyone but me understand this?
I'll bet Laura, Liz, Tama, Charlotte and Judy did! (Hey my soul sister peeps!)

Well - I totally got side tracked, didn't I?
I do that a lot.
A lot.
Creative minds and all that you know.

Back to the original post thing...
Sketch books, awesome husband, talented son and drawing...not in that order but my world revolves around it!
So - I have been doing a lot of sketching of thumbnail drawings here lately.
And loving it.
I totally recommend this activity to anyone that is interesting in drawing.
I'm going to share the last two pages
of my sketch book cause - well, cause I like to share.
And I think that showing all of you some good art work along with some not-so-good-artwork will make you feel better about what you're doing.
Or not doing.
Whatever the case may be.
The point being that if you want to draw better
Seriously...You might say "Oh, I wish I could draw like you do."
But if you want to do that (not like me but anyone that can "draw")
you have to draw.
A. Lot.
Like- everyday helps.
Doesn't have to be a masterpiece (but if it turns out to me - good for you!)
just a little bitty bit of daily drawing.
Could you do this for a week?

Could you?
Let's try it, okay?
It won't be hard for me because I already draw just about every day anyway.
Alright - draw daily for a week and then compare your drawings.
I'll bet that you will be very surprised at how much better you are.
It's like doing (sewing, drawing, painting, golf, playing a musical instrument, cooking, running) the more you practice, the better that you are!
Painting. Sewing. Quilting. Golf. Driving. Playing a musical instrument. Cooking.
You get the picture.
So - if you want to be able to draw better...
then what are you going to do?


Oh- see the drawing of the dragon'ish circular image above? I saw a billboard going towards Charlotte NC yesterday that had a similar image that was a silver bracelet (or ear rings - not sure which) but they looked awesome! I wrote down the designer and the jewelry store...
might have to check that out ladies!
It appeared to be one of those pieces of jewelry that may take up gifts for the next four years though...
any jewelry designers out there that could make something like that for less?
Please email me...

Sunday, August 16, 2009


Those of you who read my blog (and/or know me in "real life") know that my mom passed away in February of this year.
You could understand that, to say the least, it's been a gut wrenching journey since then. Besides all the standard probate checklist, I've had to try and deal with family members that have not always been upright and honest in what they're doing.
I'm not going in to that (aren't you glad?!) but did want to share a couple of treasures that going through my mom's things have turned up.
I crocheted for years and years - my mom and great grandmother taught me the standard grannies square when I was about 10.
I laid it down for a while but picked it back up when I was pregnant with my son (who is now almost 21).
I didn't want to do the regular yarn crochet and found myself drawn to the white cotton thread doilies that you find in antique shops.
So I began the loving journey of teaching myself this type of crochet.
Needless to say, my mom loved the lace that I made and all she had to say was "Oh, Callie! (my nick name) I love that!" and it was hers.
Those doilies that I so lovingly made for my mom have come full circle.
Below is a picture of a few of them...
I loved ( and still do) the intricate lace patterns and worked with some little bitty thread back then! My eyes are not good enough to work with such small thread now.

Again, I've said this before but I'm saying it again...My grandmother was a doll Doctor and a maker of dolls.
She and I must have been so much alike in some ways - always making things with our hands, sewing, quilting, know - just being artists.
I found a copy of her "Doll Doctoring" manual.
I looked and looked and couldn't find a date on or in the book. It is about 3 inches thick and a veritable cornucopia of knowledge.
Everything one would need to know about fixing up a damaged doll baby...
And look at this box that I found - my mom's handwriting.
"Very Old Doll".

Look at her! My grandmother had evidently began the restoration process - you can see that she has had some "re-do" work on her beautiful head.

Look at those buttons that make the movable arms and legs...

The fabric of her body is so old that it's falling apart.

The clothes that were inside the box were too small for her - they may have been her clothes when she was younger.

But they are just as old as she is. Teeny tiny crocheted lace on one of the dresses.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Brought to you by the Letter "N"

I want my buddy Martha to see that I have been watching her glorious videos...
and practicing.
Look at this awesome little "art" work, I mean word that I created...
My name those little details...
and in my drawing class, I really stress that it's all about those little details... Oohh...look at this little piece of practice...
Create (daily).


Oh, now I says "Is pire to spell better"
What's going on with that? Did some little elementary school kid get hold of my markers...?

OK -I have to come clean here...
I did it.
I am the one that (accidentally) left out the letter "N".
My husband DARED ME to put this on my blog...
Mr. Webster was one of his nicknames in school (imagine that?!)...
So I had to add the next line...
"love your Miss Spelled Word"
and I do Is pire to love that word every day...
It brings me Joy.

You know, she may be Miss Spelled but she looks good !

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Paper Fabric and Peeps

I've been doing some free demonstrations on making "Paper Fabric".
I'm also working on a new class about backgrounds for mixed media art work.
I'll include the paper fabric as part of the class (a tiny portion). I did the demo at the Asheville Quilt Guild and the ladies loved it! When you learn the process, it really opens a lot of creative doors to other possibilities.
I've included a few scans of some that I did.
I think that you'll be surprised with the progression of what you can do with cheap craft paint and distress ink pads.
And a couple of other things that I withheld for the workshop - secret weapons if you will.

This is the base of the technique. Paper collage on fabric.

I've added a few thread blobs and gauze for texture. This piece also has fabric dye on it - was just trying to see how it reacted with the paper/fabric combo.

This scan shows what adding a scrape of paint does for the overall blending of the piece.

I love the way that this small piece ended up. It was part of the above one that I added dye too.

I added some cream paint - didn't really like it.

Added a blue paint - that was okay but not quite "there".

So I added more cream paint...more blue...

Then I began messing around with the Distress Ink Pads (Ranger).

Now I like it.

The texture is amazing - the areas where I added the gauze and thread is just so cool! The ink really picked up that area of additional height and shows it off.

This last piece is one that I used more of the ink pad painting on. I do have a layer of paint underneath that.

Several layers actually.

I usually have about 3 or 4 pieces of paper fabric like this "going" or "cooking" in my studio.

They keep me busy when my muse is resting...or hiding...

I hope that you all have a blessed day today.

In my "previous life" there were a lot of days that were filled with chaos, unrest, and just down right bad stuff - but my life now is the opposite.

I am surrounded by love, acceptance and just down right good things.

My hope for you today is that your life is good. It's peaceful and those that surround you love you.

Accept you and appreciate you.

And if they don't - well, maybe you need some new peeps...

Monday, August 10, 2009

Alabama Stitch Book

I know, I know...I have posted about this book
or it's author
or a project from it
time and time again...

I can't help myself.
I love this book.

I adore the sheer beauty of the simple fabric
and the simple thread.

The brilliance of the way that the two are joined together.

It's just beautiful.

I posted a while back that I was making a project from the book.

And I did -
I finished it just in time to wear to the Asheville Quilt Show!

I made the Reverse-Applique Swing Skirt from the pattern in the book.

It was a BIG hit!

I'll post a few pictures of the skirt -sans Carol- for the moment.
Maybe said skirt + Carol photo will come later...

A Busy Week

Last week was so busy for the Sloan household!
We were finishing up the Big League World Series obligation,
continuing to rush about getting my son ready for art school this fall. He was accepted into Winthrop Art School- but we only have 2 weeks left to get EVERYTHING ready to it pays to check all of your paperwork early and not wait until the last minute!
In my own defence, I have been so crazy busy dealing with my mom's estate and family members that refuse to cooperate with "due process"...
some people just do not understand that there are certain things that have to be done.
And it's not about what they want or I want - it's about what HAS to be done...
I had two demo's last week in Asheville. One on Tuesday at the Fiber Art Alliance that I am a member of.
It went very well! I think that it can be an eye opener for people to watch the mixed media background demo as they begin to look at their supplies a bit differently...
I did the same demo at the Asheville Quilt Show.
Did any of you go to the Show?
My. Oh. My.
Julie Simpson and all the other ladies did an awesome job! What a fabulous show it was! And so many great demonstrations! I was honored to be a part of the event also.
Such great talents right here in our back yards.
I was so busy looking and then teaching that I didn't take pictures. I'll bet if you go over to Judy Simmons or Mary Stori's blog they will have pictures.
Then yesterday, I sent in two project proposal's for a book that is being written.
Keep all your fingers crossed (and maybe your toes too!) that at least one of my project's will be accepted. I think they will be notifying people around the end of this month - maybe next month.

I'll try to do a better post a bit later on.
I'm going to my studio now to begin work on two small (short not small) books to send in for possible publication.
I'm real excited about this project - scared but excited!
I'll let you all know what happens with it all - one is for a magazine and the other is for a publisher (book).
I've released my dream to the Universe - let's see if it's meant to be.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Blog Karma

I just had to share some good karma happenings with you...
A while back I did a blog post about showing some love and what being friends is all about.
Tucked away inside that post was a wish and a prayer to not only help
but to win some one of a kind art work.
KC Willis fiber art to be exact.
I had forgot all about the blog post and the opportunity to win
(you know how that happens - it's the pace of life...or maybe it's the middle age memory loss thing).
But one day this week I went out to check the mail.
Open the box...
reach in...
and pull out an envelope with the return address of "KC Willis"...
You know, KC from Lipstick Ranch.
Oh. My.
I looked around quickly to make sure no one saw me dancing at my mailbox
(although my neighbors are used to me doing odd things).
I ran in the house, threw the other mail aside and ripped open the envelope.
"Mine! All Mine!" I shouted!
Look at what I won! Look at what is going to be hanging in my studio!

Mine! All Mine!

Monday, August 3, 2009

A Tatted Lace Tale

I recently looked around on Etsy for some tatted lace.
I not only found lace, but I found this awesome lady, Dorothy, that will definitely get my repeat business.
I ordered several tatted pieces, a wide embroidered piece of lace and tiny tatted & crocheted doilies.
Here is a copy of one of the cards that was in my package .
Go here - look around -

Look at these tiny tatted pieces!

She sent me extra goodies and refunded a few dollars of my shipping cost!

And then, a week later, she sent me several pieces of tatted lace remnants!
How cool is that?!
Shop her store, tell he that I sent you there!