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2013…Ringing in the New Year

Sunday, December 30, 2012

This year has been an interesting year with many changes.  I’ve been thinking more and more about the changes, how it will shape the rest of my life, and what directions to I want to go.  There have been many days of ‘good intentions’ but just didn’t hit the mark of accomplishment.  There have also been many challenges that I was surprised that things turned out so well.  Those are the ‘oh yeah, I did it’ days that I want more of.

Our front window, with artist blown glass.

A friend and fellow artist, Lynne Medsker is working with a two word concept for the year.   Her blog post “Words and Intent” is a great read.  So…toe tap, toe tap…I have been sitting at the keyboard writing these lofty resolutions; then pondering about them.  The all hinge on two concepts…organization and schedule.

Since there have been so many changes recently in my life, organization is key to me.   Schedule is also key, because I’m out of sync with my new creative path.  Glass became second nature to me but mixed media hasn’t made that mark yet.  It’s much more challenging to me as well.  I get to pick and choose but I’m also not proficient in any yet.  That’s going to take time and dedication but I’m good with that.  The path of least resistance isn’t always the best, it depends on the goal.

That leads me back to goals…organization and schedule. Now those are a bit odd coming out of an artist’s mouth but business is also part of being an artist.  Or it is for this one.  My concept is paring down to build a foundation then add as I go, that’s the organization part.  The schedule part will last as long as I need to set a pattern of efficiency.  When I add to the foundation, I’ll add it to my schedule. It’s simple as that.

The snowfall on the trees are right out of fairyland.
This leads me to my focus points…that’s just a fancy name for ‘to-do’ list.   

These are current and to be re-evaluated as the year moves on.  Life has a habit of making changes that a person can’t stop.  So why fight it…I’m working with the seasons instead.

Single drops of water, combined with many, make up a world of ice.

First off…
I’m finally done with having a couple websites, a business blog, a personal blog, working on this or that…whatever.  I’m just here, my blog.  It’s also a landing page for my Etsy shop, Facebook, Flickr, Pinterest, and whatever else I decide to add later. 

There are only so many hours in the day and trying to keep with all the ‘you have to have this’ online isn’t working for me.  There comes a point that marketing and social media isn’t helpful if it takes away from creation.  So for right now, that’s where I need to be…creating.  It’s a balance that I’m working towards.

Winter sky of grey with a single watcher.

I’m taking some time for me; this is part of the schedule issue.  When an artist’s hobbies become more than just a hobby, they become self-employed and the hobby goes by the way side.  So this year, I’m taking time for a new hobby, hand building pottery.  Classes start on January 10th.   I’m betting you will see photos so don’t worry that you’ll miss anything.
A photo is worth a thousand words....this is how I feel about snow.  Normally, I don't mind but I'm snowed out early.


 Keep my photo files organized!  There is no great time eater.  If I don’t keep up on my photos, it becomes overwhelming to say the least.  It’s also back to Flickr!  It’s an easy way for me to organize my photos, sketches, and work.  Instead of having all the photos on my iPhone, just use the Flickr app instead. 

Now why did you get a novel when normally my blog posts are short and sweet?  Well, don’t get used to it.  Most of my future posts are most likely going to be photos, at least until I can figure out all the buttons and knobs on the new camera.  The other, I've found if I write and post it, I do it.
Later Gators!

Snow, Night Photography with a 50mm prime lens....Photo collage backgrounds

Saturday, December 29, 2012

If I can avoid going out in the snow, I do.  Going out in the dark and snow, is something I just don't do.  I'm not fond of cold, snow, or slippery anything.

But...sometimes, I just can't help myself...I had to see what snow looked like though the lens...

These were shot with a Nikkor AF-S 50mm f/1.8G lens.  It's my prime lens that I use most of the time.  I can't say that I'm a great photographer but having decent equipment sure makes it easier to get good shots.

Anyway, I'm not much on winter shots but them selves but they work great for backgrounds as photo collages.  So, you will be seeing lots of these.

Have a great weekend...I'm off to see if I can figure out my graphics tablet better.  It and I need to make friends.


Blizzard of 2012...Briggs, the wonder sheltie, in the snow....

Thursday, December 27, 2012

We survived the 'Blizzard of 2012' and have dug out.  It wasn't that bad here, the streets have been cleared already.  We kept up on the driveway, walks, and back deck. 

Anyway, this is Briggs being the shaggy backyard king. 

Me, I'm mostly staying inside and working on finishing up a few watercolors.

Later Gators!

A Wordless Wednesday...

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Need I say more? It's a blizzard day in Indiana...

Back to hiding...stay warm and dry!!!

Digital Mixed Media...Quiet Studio

Monday, December 24, 2012

I was up very early while the house was work on an idea.  I think that the above will print up fabulously on a metallic luster. 

On that paper orders ETA later this week!!
I can't wait....

Anyway, I'd like to get some painting in this morning before anything else happens...bye!

Later Gators,

Bird studies for for a day in the studio...

Sunday, December 23, 2012
 It's a quiet day at the Stumpp house so we decided  to make a grocery run and bunker in for a while.  Snow and colder weather is headed our way.  It's not bad when you don't have any place to be...but many people do. 
Today is an awesome winter day...a bit chilly but it is sunny and the birds were out in mass.  I got a few decent shots for a new idea of a new series.  That means, if I can get it sketched out to my satisfaction, I'll mock up some birdie designs. :-D 

Off to the studio...
Later Gators,

First snow photos

Friday, December 21, 2012

First snow photos....thought I'd better get some shots because tomorrow it's supposed to be in the high 30's.  It won't last long. YAY!!!!

Later Gators,

Digital Mixed Media DONE!

Thursday, December 20, 2012
The 12-12-12 digital mixed media series is done, for a while.  I'll start print soon.  Believe or not, that's the hard part.  The type of paper will either make are break a digital piece.  Anyway, that will be the next biggie on the horizon for me.

Now, I'm moving on to a couple projects.  The main one is coming up with a schedule of doing it all.  Well, like that is ever going to happen.  I do need to find or make time to paint, even if it's only a hour a day.

The next couple of weeks will be ones of quite.  My sinus infection is calming down and I've got lots of things to get done.  Hopefully some photography.

I'm off to play in the studio...

My Wish for the World...

Monday, December 17, 2012

Ok...I think this gets the message across.  I'm back painting fun stuff until I get my groove back.  I've come to the point that I've realized that I need to paint a couple hours a day.  It's the only way my skill base goes up...instead of down.

Later Gators,

The challenge of mixed watercolor painting

 I spend a lot of time at the Indianapolis Airport. Either dropping Bob off or picking him up.  I pulled over to the side of the road and popped off a couple of frames.  I'm thinking that a wide angle would of been better but  you get the idea.  At night, the airport can be seen for miles.  It's actually a lovely view.

Yesterday, I took some time off my digital direction and picked up a brush.  It was good to work with watercolor paint but painful.  It's come to the point that I really need to have a set schedule in a way.  I really need to paint a couple hours a day, every day.
How I'm going to do it all?  I don't know.  There isn't enough hours in the day or I'm not multi tasking well enough. That's one of my goals to figure out...soon. I've been told that it gets easier in time, I'll hit a schedule that works.

Mixed media has it's challenges and this is one of them.  The other challenge is the amount of stuff you need...most, not that expensive...but it's the storage and physical space that is needed sometimes.  This is another challenge that I'm working on.

I'm off to the studio...later gators...

Fine Art Friday...just about done with the Digital Mixed Media series

Friday, December 14, 2012

Wooty Woot, I made a Fine Art Friday for once!!!! 

This series is almost done.  I will get them printed and matted in a 12x12 pop in the frame, ready to go art.

I have found that I really enjoy working the square.  I will be doing more and I like how the work looks in a large wall.  Three pieces are fabulous over a couch. One or two pieces in a bathroom.

My day is coming to a close soon.  I'm still fighting a sinus infection that seems to have taken up residence in my face. Pesty, pesty bugs.  So after dinner, I'm going to relax with a book.

Have a wonderful weekend,

12-12-12...a new Digital Mixed Media series

Wednesday, December 12, 2012
Today has been a good productive day…I’ve started a new series called ’12-12-12’.  I think that’s what I will name it.  12-12-12 is a once in a lifetime day so spending it with creative energy was the way for me to go.  

The favor of the series is line and texture.

Sometimes, a series is more than just an idea or creative thought.  It’s a way to let a person know that the entire series can flow to together. 

When a series flows, it can be hung together in a wall grouping.  I’m hoping that it will hit that mark that I’ve set.
This series just didn't pop out today. I've had a lot of prep time the last couple of weeks.  Creating a huge number of backgrounds, then storing them away to use later.  Anyway, sometimes it would be much quicker for me just to paint the piece than to create it in digital format. This is one of those 'hmmmmm' moments that I've been thinking about. 
Have a great 12-12-12 day!

Digital Mixed clean watercolor palette

Tuesday, December 11, 2012
A photo is worth a thousand words...a clean palette and desk.  It's rare...actually this is the first time that I have totally cleaned a palette.  Now the real reason cat, Izzy, decided to sleep on my desk. A fuzzy, furry cat doesn't mixed well with paint, any paint unless it's totally dry.  My palette paints were still damp, fuzzy mess by the time I found them.

 The above was a digital mixed media experiment that included work with a graphics tablet.  The graphics tablet is one of the pieces that I've been missing.  It's a wonderful addition for any one that does digital art.  I have a Wacom Bamboo Create, it's the largest Bamboo and I'm glad I did.  Later, if I stay with digital, I may upgrade but for now, I'm fine.  It works wonderfully for me.

The above is a background...I make lots of these to either to digitally draw on or to merge with other digital work to create the final piece.  Sometimes I will use these as layers or pieces of them to create texture. 

That's all the fun stuff, now for the icky.  I've been having lots of sinus issues, it's the same one off and on since May. Enough times that my Doc has decided to to send me to a CT scan.  So tomorrow, I have to have a sinus CT scan.  She would like to confirm that I have a big 'snot ball' of infection someplace in my sinus cavities before she puts me on 6 weeks of antibiotics. 

Later Gators,

Why I keep my camera with me....Garfield Park Art Center...a few adventures with photos

Sunday, December 09, 2012
Bob and I started off at Christmas as Garfield.  We were both elves at the Garfield Park ArtCenter, part of the toy making station.  It was three hours of non-stop kids and parents wanting to make toy wooden cars.  Both of us got to wear elf hats, a perk, and listen to the bell choir. 

Another one of Santa's elves...

Exhibition by Garfield Park Arts Center Teaching Artists is currently on display.  The work is worth a peek, it's very unique, colorful, and fabulous.  I was rather impressed with the exhibit.  There is a large number of different types of mediums; which is always a challenge.  So who ever hung this show also did a fabulous job!!!  There's a lot that goes into exhibits such as's the behind the scenes that can made or break an exhibit.  This one shined!

Before going home, we had to stop in at Martinsville to pick up some displays from an artist friend that is leaving the state.  That was a bit sad, I will miss her.

Anyway, we had to make couple of other included pulling the car over for me to get a few photo shots off.  Deer don't normally come out in the day but it was a misty, grey I'd say we got lucky.  Isn't she beautiful!!

As long as I didn't move, she didn't move.  She realized I wasn't a hunter and quickly became uninterested in me but I couldn't get too close.
It's photo shot surprises like this is the reason why I normally keep my camera with me.  Yes, it's not light and sometimes a PITA but I'd miss a lot of photo ops.
Same bat time, same bat place...

It's a cold icky day here...Backyard views in Danville, Indiana

Friday, December 07, 2012
 It's a grey day here, Mouse (below) is napping. Which I would like to be doing but I've got some jewelry to photograph.  I've been trying to gather up as many photos as I can to paint before we get into the snow season.  BTW, snow is a four-letter word to me.
 All-in-all, I'm enjoying my camera.  I still can't walk and get all the buttons/knobs working so it's a time thing. 
On top of the gloomy day, the HVAC man is here.  We don't have any heat right now. Yesterday, it kept getting colder and colder in the house.  I thought it was the icky weather.  Yeah, right, I wish.  I looked at the temp, it was down to 61 wonder I was cold.  Anyway, it's in the process of being worked on. 

Have a wonderful, dry weekend!!!

Backyard winter garden is done!!!! Bird photos and Etsy

Thursday, December 06, 2012
 Monday's chore was cleaning out the deck garden and getting it ready for winter.  Next on the list was getting it ready for bird studies.  Which really means getting out all the bird feeders with all the cleaning and filling done.
 Then it was the waiting game of the feeders are fill, where are the birds??? They figured out that the Stumpps have a fly-thur chow line now.
 This little guy (above) was funny.  He kept on wanting to jump up there with the big birds.
 I guess the robin is waiting in line.
Mr. Squirrel had no problems with joining his feathered friends. 

My focus for the weeks is working on jewelry photos for Etsy.  It's a new lighting setup and new camera. So far, well, it's been a lot of tweaking but it's coming along.  It takes a bit but as soon as I hit the sweet spot, it will be much quicker.  I'm just out of the swing. 

Later Gators!

Simple Concept in a Wacky World....

Wednesday, December 05, 2012

That's all I really have to say today...


Bee Skinner at Tri Kappa’s Gingerbread Christmas...a show review from a shopper and artist

Sunday, December 02, 2012
Yesterday, Bob and I stopped in at Tri Kappa’s Gingerbread Christmas. This show has been around for decades and it’s held at the Plainfield High School.  Tri Kappa supports local not-for-profit organizations by providing an area devoted to their wares, ranging from homemade candy, jelly and jams, and cheese balls to the Mental Health Association wreaths, yellow trash bags, and bake sales.  The admission is $3 per person with all proceeds supporting charity, culture, and education projects in the community. Tri Kappa donates over $11,000 annually to local schools, and supports local services such as Meals on Wheels, Senior Services, Arts Council, Riley Children’s Hospital, Sheltering Wings, and Mental Health.  Tri Kappa does wonderful things for Hendricks Country. So by shopping local, it's a triple gift.  Think global, buy local is my motto.
The place was packed with buyers and had well over a hundred booths...

 A Facebook and artist friend, Bee Skinner, was showing.  I tried to get a photo of her booth without a lot of people in it, no was always full as well.  Her work is fun, unique, and bold.  She is a glass artist that currently is working heavily with fusing.

Her booth is lovely and displays her work's another shot.  I did not do her work justice. It was a really quick shot because several people stepped out. She also has an Etsy shop and you can catch her on Facebook.

This is a very interesting and unique show…very home town sort of event with some very high quality work and some Christmas seasonal items, that is also part of charm of the show.   I was surprised by at the number of artists PLUS everything was handmade. I was even more surprised by some of those artists’ quality of work.  Work that isn’t typically found at a holiday craft show.  
Overall, it was a gift shopper’s dream and one of the best kept secrets of Central Indiana.  Everything was well displayed and had pieces that I would buy (and I did buy).  Maybe, I’m too old school when it comes to holiday shopping, but I loved the mix art, craft, and the charm of the seasonal items.  There was something for everyone there. So mark your calendars for next year's shopping.
Later Gators,