Tag Archives: artist friends

Sometimes We Have to Play!


Last week several of us got together for our Diva Day. We just played with paint, paper, & a serious supply of plastic wrap.

There are times when playing is the only thing that starts the juices rolling, and this was one of those times.  Since we only get together once a month, talking is mostly what we do.  But we did play, each in our own way.

The process we played with is to cover the paper with paint, and put plastic wrap over the top.  Twist and pull, leave a pattern on the paper, then leave it alone and let it dry.  The darker the paint the more intense the pattern.  If it dries to light, do it over with a darker color.  Or do it a second time to allow for more layers of pattern.  There isn’t any right or wrong way to do this!

When the plastic wrap is dry, and it’s pulled off, start looking for images in the dried pattern.  Again, anything goes.  Whatever you see, either outline it, and paint around it, or just paint around it.  That is called “Negative Space Painting.”  The idea is to blend out the paint you are using for outlining.  Keep it wet, and work it until you have defined images on the paper.

This will be totally different for some, and easy for others.  It took me forever to wrap my head around this method, but it’s fun, and pushes your brain to thinking creatively.

Here are a couple of examples of Negative Space painting…..

Artichoke Flower

God of Wine

Traces of the Past

I hope you have fun trying this, if it doesn’t work the first time, try it again…..OR, use watercolor, or acrylic ink and pour the paint over the paper.  Remember to use watercolor paper, and if pouring a color is what you like don’t forget to wet your paper first. Both mediums will work.  Watercolor will take longer to dry, and has it’s challenges.  Acrylic dries faster, so keeping it open might be a challenge for some.

Thanks for checking in, and trying something new.

Holly, Moley




I am over the purse thing.  After helping some of the girls with purses, figuring out my own design, and all the chaos that goes with a room full of purse painters…….I’m over it!

I painted two purses….one to small for me to use, a little  leather travel bag I purchased on Cedros St. years ago to travel with.  Turns out,  it’s so small it won’t hold my sunglasses, or much of my wallet.  So of course, I had to paint it.

Paint on leather

The other a canvas travel bag that should eliminate my wallet, but hold my sunglasses.  The thing is,  I got over it before I finished, and that is not good!  When that happens, I start making mistakes, and mistakes I made.  Dripping paint where is shouldn’t have been.  Smearing from the side of my hand, things like that.  So I did exactly the same thing I’d do in a painting.  There are no mistakes, only opportunities to be creative!  Well, I don’t know about that.  In this case I’m not so sure that worked.  Line work was used to pull it together and poka-dots were used to cover other opportunities.

“I should have stopped here!”

All in all…..

I meant to do that!


Oh What A Beautiful Morning!


Good morning everyone.  I awakened this morning with the sun shinning in my bedroom window.   Bouncing out of bed all I could think of was,  how blessed I am to be living in beautiful Southern California.  The weather is moderate, temperatures are mostly perfect, and we have a roof over our heads.  Schmaltzy I know, but my heart is filled with joy at the prospects of the day.

With a cup of coffee by my side, and some Nora Jones singing in the background I’m thinking of all of you and the creativity each of you have to offer.  Many of us don’t feel like we have anything to offer, and creating anything is just not worth it.  My feeling is that everything we do is worth something.  If we create for the love of creating anything, that’s a good thing.  I have to remember, “It’s the journey, not the destination!”

Wednesday some of my friends and myself were playing with our iPads.  We were trying to find an app that allowed us even more options for creativity, and then learn to use that app.    That’s where the picture came from.  It’s an old picture of my old self with red hair,  feathers for earrings, and glasses.   An abstract watercolor from Sketch Master, one  the apps I’ve collected.  Just a start in the world of iPads, something my friends and I are just learning, and  It’s fun and different for me, but even though it’s something I don’t want to get involved in, there is something to experimentation.

I do love to experiment! 

This is pretty cool also!  A negative of a picture.  Maybe this would help with learning to negative shape paint, or sketch.  It would be a great exercise for learning to draw.  Can you see how this might be helpful?  I always try new things, it never hurts.

Have a great weekend. and look at your surroundings as if there is information to be used in your creativity!

Artists Hacks…..


I actually got a couple of things out of this little video. You know how things get forgotten over time? Well, This was just a little reminder about a few hacks I’d totally set aside and forgotten.

Robin Clonts is a cute young painter with ideas, take a look.  Maybe you can get something out of this video too!

I knew This Was Coming…

I prefer to remember my friend by her peacefully beautiful garden

I prefer to remember my friend by her peacefully beautiful garden

But I had no idea I’d react  this way….

Last week I helped a very good friend clean out the home of another very dear friend, and this is the end to the story!

My friend Barbara passed last September, she had been very ill, and unable to walk, dementia had set in and the worst part was that she realized she wasn’t thinking clearly.  It was very sad, however we all realized her quality of life was not as it should have been, or as she wanted, so when she unexpectedly passed, it really was a blessing.    Barbara had been a hiker, a writer, a world traveler, a teacher, and an artist among many other things.  We were all devastated, but we knew it was best!

After about six months her home was put up for sale, her car was sold, and after a couple of weeks the house was sold as well. The new owners we excited to be starting the next chapter of their lives in a beautiful home.  What was supposed to be a 45 day escrow, turned into a very short escrow with a last minute notice to move out, and a   short week to pack all of the remains in the home, and leave.

 Some times there are blessings in what one would think was a desaster. 

The blessing came by way of not having time to think of all the beloved treasures remaining, or how Barbara traveled all over the world to collect  these treasures, or even who could possably clear out a 3000 sq. ft. home in a week, not to mention the garage!  But it was done and over with a few hours prior to the deadline, sadness left behind along with the gardens, the pond full of Koi, and a tree house that was never quite used enough.

It took many people, some literary working day and night, some as much as their bodies could handle to empty drawers, cupboards, all nooks, and all the crannies being emptied out.  Many of us have boxes and boxes of things yet to be distributed to places like the Women’s Resource Center, or helping Young Artists Thrive.  A few things were saved by each of us in Barbara’s memory, however only a small amount of treasures can find their place amongst us.

Barbara spent many years teaching children, she would be happy to know how much of her things will be going to help thriving student artists locally.  Or, things that will help the homeless families get back to a much needed normal way of life.

Yes, I did keep a few things, maybe more than I needed, but not more than helped me feel closer to my friend.  What it did for me in the process was to help me realize how we all have way too much “stuff!”  I know for me after going through her studio, and kitchen, and finding so many multiples of the same thing, unopened, or unused, it helped me realize how privileged I am, and how much less I can do without.  We have a little home, under 1000 sq ft, and yet every space is filled with things we no longer use, or are from our younger years and hold memories.   Our kids will one day go through our home, just like we just went through Barbara’s home.  I don’t want that to happen, and yet it probably will to a certain extent.  That home was 3000 sq. ft., and ours is 923, and like Barbara, we have every space stuffed with treasures.  I no longer can stand that, and in all fairness someone else might need it more than we do.  All the clothes we save for a special occasion, or that have memories;  all old photos that will fade and get tossed in the end; the art supplies that will be better served with struggling young artists that have very little.  Most of it belongs with them, and it makes me feel good about donating it to them.


Barbara was in her eighties when she passed, and never expected to go before her mother did, who was well into her nineties.  We can’t rely on those things, and not having anyone to leave all this to except a great-niece that lived in Wisconsin, that was a heavy load for anyone.

Yesterday, Friday the 15th was the deadline for the home to be emptied, and it was!  The garage an entirely different story.  It made me sick to go out there and even think of clearing out the garage.  It was overwhelming for all of us.    I helped a little, but whether it was exhaustion, or emotions, I hit the wall!

This is really a wake up call to myself and all of us working together in the past week, to tackle this problem way before it gets this far.  In the garage there were old empty  boxes lining the walls, old printers,, computers, or appliances that no longer worked on shelves.  You would never have called my friend a hoarder, yet that is exactly what I would now call her.  My home is neat and clean to look at also, but I think we hord, we don’t even realize it in that way, and I don’t like that…..not one little bit!

I’m going to take one room at a time, maybe a closet at a time, but I need less not more.  Clutter makes us all feel confined and stressed and we don’t need that in our lives.  I want to be a minimalist not a hoarder.  I’m not going to wear that tight tee-shirt, short mini skirt,  or those high heals ever again, and someone else might.  I have many good clothes that I can’t wear, or never get that dressed up to wear…Off they go!

I want to live a peaceful, stress-free life and I think this is a good way to start the process.  How do you feel about this……  are you saving things in boxes you don’t even remember, or clothes in a clothes bag or on a hanger you will never wear?  I know I have expensive clothes that I can’t for various reasons even try wearing, or treasures I have already packed away for lack of room.  (Think of all the “retail therapy you are missing out on by not having space to put it!)

I just want to keep my Teddy Bear, who was my very first and best  friend, can I keep him please!


Place your hands in the soil to feel grounded. Wade in water to feel emotionally healed. Fill your lungs with fresh air to feel mentally clear. Raise your face to the heat of the sun and connect to that power to feel your own immense power.”

~Victoria Erickson

Doyley Printing


Today being the 1st of March, I thought something totally different, at least for me, would be in order.  When I was a kid my mother would make little cards out of paper stock and wax paper.  She would cut the  wax  paper to the small size of the card stock, and press on top of the wax with dried pressed flowers in between.  They would be tied with a small bow after using a whole punch in two places, and they were so sweet.  All her friends loved them, and I loved them also.

This is a little different but it reminded me of mother using wax paper to create her cards.  Probably because of the iron.  Since this is so different from anything I have been doing, and I liked the art he created more as a start than anything else, I thought you may like to see this method of encaustic.

Even if you don’t want to try it, there is a good chance it will trigger something in your creative memory to inspire you to go further.  I’d love to see it, and I’m sure if you could post it on Facebook we would  all be able to see it.  Don’t forget to mention my name so it actually gets to us all.  Karen Samenow!

Thank you all for watching, and keep creating……