Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Caribbean Blues & Floral Magentas

Mimi Frawley of A Thousand Dreams Designs, recently emailed me 2 of her beautiful Nature inspired jewelry projects.
The top picture is her summer free-form peyote bracelet in progress, one of a limited edition of four pieces. She was inspired by this beautiful photo of Dianthus flowers.

Mimi said the Caribbean Bay Blues Charm Bracelet was inspired by the gorgeous blues of a Carribean Bay in the US Virgin Island of St. John. The bracelet is all hand done, including the shell and starfish charms of precious metal clay fired to fine silver (.999 silver) and also includes charms of freshwater coin pearls, Amazonite gem stones, and 6mm swarovski crystals in the color Caribbean Blue Opal.

Notice in the photo of the water, that there is color palette across the top. This is the Color Schemer tool Mimi mentioned in her informative two part blog on color on the ETSY Wisconsin Street "Moo Crew" blog. If you have a MAC you can download this tool for a free 15 day trial, but after that it costs $49.99. You can insert your picture and the program automatically creates a palette from the colors in the picture. The circles (see photo) can be moved around, so you can adjust the palette until you're happy with it. I absolutely LOVE this tool, as I can use it for both my jewelry making and my watercolor painting. So far, I have only spent about 1 hour trying it out, and I am looking forward to seeing what else it can do.

For Windows users, they have a free Color Schemer Color Pix download, but that only picks colors one at a time.

Thanks Mimi, for sharing your stunning Nature-inspired jewelry pieces with us!

(I apologize for the goofy layout of this entry. These Blogspot pre-made templates apparently have a mind of their own.)

Thursday, June 4, 2009

www - wonderful watercolor workshop!

Wonderful!  That’s the best word to describe my experience last week as I attended a 5 day watercolor painting workshop taught by Judy Morris.  She is a master of using textures and other design methods such as stenciling, lettering, and stamping in her watercolor painting.  (See her Tratorria painting on her home page for an example. Since my husband and I are wine fanatics and love to go out to eat when we can afford it, I just HAD to buy a giclee reproduction of this painting.)  The event was held in conjunction with the annual juried show of the Transparent Watercolor Society of America.

I had a fantastic time!  The camaraderie with other artists was great, the teaching was superb, and the organization of the workshop itself outstanding.   If you have a chance in whatever media you work in, to get away for a workshop, DO IT! 

There’s nothing better to inspire your creativity and give you new energy than getting away from real life and relaxing for a while.  It’s also inspiring hanging around in the company of other artists.  I was having dinner with 2 of the ladies in a quaint little coffeeshop/restaurant and they stood up and started taking pictures of all the stuff hanging on the walls.  A majority of people wouldn’t even notice these items, but they were seeing all of its art and design and getting inspiration to paint from it! 

If you can’t get away to a workshop, think about joining your local arts organization. You get the benefit of the camaraderie with other artists without the expense of travel and lodging. It can also open you up to other types of art, networking, and show opportunities. And quite frankly, with the current tough economic times, these organizations could really use your help.

Now I must come back down to earth and get busy on a commissioned jewelry piece, which will transform an heirloom wedding ring into a pendant to honor the ring owner’s grandparents.  I’m really getting to like doing these heirloom pieces.

Don’t forget, if you have any recent nature inspired art to email to me for use on my blog, here’s your chance to get some free publicity! (lwjlynn@frontiernet.net)