The last weeks have been busy ones around here. Just when I thought I had my Etsy shop well stocked, I sold three of my larger works (and received a commission for a fourth) and found myself thinking “Replace, replace!” I made a promise to myself years ago that I wouldn’t get in a hurry to add new art – everything would be at a peaceful rate, you know… NO stress. Well, I’m a chronic double tasker and a bit of a perfectionist and one who loves to challenge myself to do more so that promise is being put to the test. So far, I’m exercising the necessary restraint!
Here’s a last look at my recent sales.
Two new pieces are ready to list. Photography is scheduled today and I plan on listing over the weekend.
Creating with another person, especially a close family member or friend, is one of the best times I can imagine. Locally, I have a couple of Mixed Media artist friends who occasionally spend a few hours creating with me. We exchange ideas or experiences, share our recent creations, and sometimes just work silently side by side. Although we love to talk about the things going on in our lives, we seem to reserve most of that for lunch as we eat our bag lunches.
And then there is my sister Janey who lives a few states away – 740 miles away to be exact. She lives “creativity” and has her hand in a number of artistic endeavors – pottery, polymer clay, paper crafting, and most recently – embroidery. When I visit Janey, it is a constant exchange of artistic ideas and we rarely have time to actually do everything we have planned.
Recently, I drove the eleven hours to Tennessee to not only visit with Janey and her family, but to create. My SUV was LOADED with art supplies as Janey and I had decided to spend four full days creating. She wanted to learn more about Assemblage and its close cousin Mixed Media, and I wanted to learn more about whatever medium she was currently working with.
Janey’s art studio is in the lower level of her home but she decided to equip her upstairs pottery room with everything we could possibly need to avoid lugging all those supplies up and down the stairs. I arrived to find a neatly arranged room with at least five large tables and our own individual work spaces – facing each other. Since we would be working for hours each day, we wanted to easily visit back and forth as well as see what the other was doing.
I have made several such creative Janey trips to Tennessee. Always, it is a rich time of not only creating but sharing our bond as sisters and friends. This trip, we each created a mini assemblage canvas. Janey was a bit unsure of her ability to create such a work but it wasn’t a matter of ability – she has that. Rather, it was a process of working with her and showing her each step to be made along the way to obtain that desired end product.
Although Janey and I mostly create in different mediums, Janey is the best at brainstorming ideas with me. When I’m mulling over what step to take next on a difficult work, I send Janey photos and we start discussing the challenge. She is sort of a co-creator in those times. After asking questions and offering ideas, she may try to locate an item for me online or recommend a place for me to look.
Janey has art supplies – everywhere – perfectly tagged and organized. Yes, I went exploring! I loved examining her large array of polymer clay creations and found these beads tucked away (and out of sight). I couldn’t resist asking her outright to give them to me. I’m planning to feature these striking beads in an assemblage canvas but I’ll want the beads to be part of the focal point so that will take some brainstorming… maybe even a call to Janey for some joint planning.
My first sale in my Etsy shop was to Janey. I was unaware that she had fallen in love with a particular piece in one of our first video shares. It featured a girl flying away with a kite and a quote that held special meaning for Janey. I was honored (and thrilled) to pack up this first sale and send on to my sister.
Earlier this year, after I returned from Tennessee, she purchased another work – one of my favorites. Unbeknownst to Janey, I had created Bird on a Branch while thinking of her and her love of birds and flower gardens. It contained many of the found objects that I purchased while in Tennessee shopping vintage malls with Janey and her family. It was entirely a “Janey” piece and somehow, she picked up on that. She immediately fell in love with it and, once again, surprised me with her purchase.
I hope to plan another Tennessee trip later this year. We’re hoping that our sister Mary can join this time around. Talk about sister artistic talent – Mary is a painter and professional photographer. She also built my Art Creations by Vicky website – yes, this one!
Fellowship, childhood memories, understanding where one came from, shared love for family and each other, and expressing oneself artistically – all make for a fabulous time. We highly recommend trying it! Oh, and those mini assemblage canvases Janey and I were creating? Here’s the result!