Saturday, August 31, 2013

I Didn't Mean It....

Really....I never meant to be away so long.  I have been on a bit of a sabbatical....looking into doing different things because I have had a very low income year and, frankly, it has been a bit depressing and disturbing.  So I decided with all of the things that had happened over the past several months, that I probably needed a I took one.

 I have been doing other things, things that will become a part of reclaiming furniture at the local trash/recycle centers and painting them....both cosmetically and artistically, giving these pieces new life and value.  I have also been working on shoes, same thing, shoes that I've bought at thrift stores or claimed at the county recycling centers.   And I will be doing the same with handbags and tote bags....some bags that I have rescued and some that I have created from rescued thrift or 'dump' items.

My images have come from nature....there is no end to the wonder of it all....add in a bit of get something, something unique and intriguing, at least if you're lucky!
The picture above is of the top of a small, handmade table that I found in the recycle shed at the 'dump'.  It was blue and grey and moldy and I could also see the cute lines (the sides, etc., that aren't in the photo) and would be a fun project.  I had no idea what I was going to do with it...other than clean it and paint it a color I like and then I thought, what the hell, I'll paint something on it....I knew I had the proper art supplies somewhere for acrylic and watercolor work, so I just started playing with it.  The images I have painted on the table top are strictly from my is incomplete but I will chart my progress and post pictures of the rest of the table, as I continue to 'play'.  I plan to finish it with a high gloss clear polyurethane so that it will be impervious to water or most other damaging things that tables and the like encounter.  The second picture is a wooden tray. and I am still not convinced that it is finished....I am about 98% sure that it is, but I have no reason to rush it along.  It will be finished with the same glossy poly stuff.  Again, this is strictly from my imagination, and I hope this blog will allow you to take a closer look at the details, such as butterflies, birds, buds, etc.  I have a larger tray just like this one that I haven't started yet, but I think it will be a seascape or sailboat or something nautical.
The picture of the palm trees and beach is about halfway complete.  I think I want to add either an umbrella or a boat that is beached or something like that.  I have made some dunesand will also add sea oats and birds and waves or ripples....still lots of things to do with this one, but again, I hope you can zoom in on it and see the details on the palm tree...I think it is pretty cool!!  This is painted on a regular canvas-covered art board that I found at the 'dump'....So my only purchases of new or retail stuff is the art supplies:  paints, brushes, that kind of thing.  I try to find as much as I can at thrift stores, but that is a rare occasion.  I do use paints from the home improvement stores that are rejects and therefore heavily discounted.  I have found some interesting colors this way...great for painting furniture and other large items.
 These shoes have very detailed flowers...they are Ecco clogs, and likely cost someone $100.00-$150.00 new.  They are a green nubuck suede and are in excellent condition.  I got them at a thrift store for myself, but they didn't work for my feet and so I decided to sell them on ebay.  Well, I had them listed for a couple of weeks but no bids, so I took them off and they were my first shoe-painting experience.  I preserved the artwork with a spray-on clear acrylic sealer in a matte finish. It did darken the color of the suede a little, so they look more khaki-ish than the original light green.  I know that they will make someone very happy, and I'll be listing them on my etsy store very soon.

Here are a couple of other pairs of shoes that I am in the process of painting....for these I have been using fabric (one is a dish towel and the other is a pillow cover, both from thrift stores, as well as the shoes) as my inspiration.  The red ones will be paisley when I am finished...The others will have the birds and flowers from the pillow cover (my yellow bird is probably going to get redone, but the pink one is quite cool!).  I am having such fun with this process...another way to make something out of nothing, or make something average into a piece of art.
These next three pictures show my source of inspiration, the photo of the butterfly enjoying a nice drink from a phlox plant.  I wanted to put this image on a handbag... then I was a little freaked out at the complexity of the butterfly I decided that first I would just try to paint the butterfly on paper and see how it went...

I have been filling in all of the flowers and greenery....just did the leaves this evening, and I am pretty proud so far...I think it will be a lovely painting!  My ultimate goal...the handbag:  this was a black leather handbag that I painted sky blue.  You are seeing the back of the bag...I was 'afraid' of starting with the butterfly (this was before I decided it might be a good idea to do it on paper first) so I painted the flowers onto the handbag.  Yesterday I drew the basic outline for the butterfly....scariest part...this is just the back of the bag, and I will have the front and the flap to contend with after I finish the back.  I have taken quite a few pictures of the butterflies, though, so I have plenty of other images to use for the other parts of the bag.  Another project that I will continue to chronicle for you and for me.
One last image for you....this is a watercolor in progress (I am good at being in progress or process or whatever you would call not quite finished...hahaha!!).  I am still trying to get the morning glories that are below the bird feeder to have more depth....and the blank spot on the left side of the railing will eventually be filled with a sleeping cat.  There is still much to be done here....the ground, the sky, etc., but I am taking my time, since this is the second watercolor I have ever done (since grade school, anyway).  It is a medium that I think I will explore till I can no longer hold a brush....I really like all the things that can be is great fun!

So, to sum it all up....this is where I've been and what I've been working on for the past two directions for GKR....all good things....I have decided that I will do clothing on a custom order basis for now, continue making bags of all kinds, and continue exploring what I can do with paint.
I vow to you, I will keep this blog updated with what I'm doing and how things are turning out.  I hope you like my is a labor of keeps a smile on my face and paint on my fingers.
Ah, and the fingers are itching to do a little more painting before bedtime, so I will bid you farewell for the night.  I send you peace and positive energy....thanks for checking in!!