Sunday, January 23, 2011

On a roll...

Well, I don't think two blog posts within a week is actually a roll yet... but baby steps, right? 

Today I wanted to feature some of the artwork I did when Tam at Willowing.ning so graciously offered a free course in Art, Heart, and Healing. What a fabulous turnout she had! And what a wonderful and informative and FUN course it was. Sure, she's a bit goofy (luv ya, Tam!) but the quality of videos she puts out are really excellent. It's very easy to follow along while watching. Week one was creating a front facing portrait. I really liked her style of using water soluble oil pastels and paint. I chose to reveal my sensitivity to words. Throughout my whole life I've let words hurt me. Here is my page: 

 Yep, that's me with blue hair. Just kidding.

The second week we worked on altering a board book. We were to make an image transfer of ourselves as a small child and tell our child what we wish for her as a grownup. 
Yeah, that's mini-me, all dressed up as a sheriff of the wild, wild west. I even played with guns. (Insert collective gasp!) I'm not a mushy gushy person and didn't think this exercise was a big deal, but when I saw myself as a small child and thought about what I wished for her... well, it was interesting to say the least. I found myself crying for what I didn't have and feeling sorry for mini-me because I haven't been able to giver her some of those things on my list.

Moving on... we learned how to make "Whimseys" those cute little big-headed characters. The page focused on healing childhood trauma. I don't remember a lot of my childhood, especially my elementary school days, before my best friend Carrie came into the picture in 3rd grade. I can remember wandering around the playground by myself because I had no one to play with. I also remember the older kids making fun of me because I had a big head in relation to my skinny body. (I suppose I looked like a Whimsey, hehe) My Whimseys show some girls reaching out to me and asking me if I want to play with them. (Carrie, do you recognize yourself in your fiery redheaded-ness? With Maria?)

We learned some really good background techniques. Like using a brayer. I had one but never used it with paint before. I love it now. As the layers of paint on my brayer show... I use it often and neglect to wash it before it dries :-)

The third week we made "Empathy Monsters".  I've made plenty of stuffies before so I had everything I needed. Except a zipper mouth of course, the key thing an Empathy Monster needs. The monster is our inner critic and we need to be able to zip its mouth when needed. Well, I figured I could use duct tape when needed. I named him Jude, after a character in a book who was a surfer-dude.
He has an eyebrow piercing, a hoop in his ear, a nice shell necklace, and endearingly crooked teeth.  Duuude. Best of all, he loves me unconditionally and tells me how wonderful I am. Of course I keep the duct tape nearby ;-) 

I am embarrassed to admit that I didn't finish the cover of my book or lesson four. I think life got in the way. But all the videos were downloadable so I can finish them whenever I am able.  I believe if you go to Willowing's site the free course is still up and the videos are still downloadable. It's worth it just to watch Tam work her magic. 

That's all for now. I'll be back in a few days, have a great week!


  1. Welcome back.

    Fascinating artwork, and thanks for the insight. I looked at the Willowing site but never managed to get round to doing anything (nought new there then).

    I love the idea of the empathy monster, but I'm not sure if there's a big enough zip for the mouth on my inner critic :D

  2. That was a great class, and Tam was so generous in offering her time to do this--which I know must be very precious to her right now.
    It's surprising what comes out of us when we do these lessons--like you said.
    I LOVE your blue-haired girl--aaah--love those water soluble crayons!!

  3. Lisa--your monster is absolutely adorable!! And your faces on your girls from Willowings class are so good. Love the photo of mini you--and for the vulnerability you display on these pages!

  4. I'm with you Lisa. intending to blog, intending to blog. I love your girls, transferred AND painted. Lori from Sketchbook.

  5. Thanks Lisa! You got the red hair right and the green dress (I always wore green whenever I could even with blue eyes) and I remember being lonely in 3rd grade too. I think we met at a birthday party for Lisa Oxford or Stephanie something? Amazing what you remember. I don't remember big head, just beautiful long shiny blond pigtails and thinking even then "This girl is so pretty and she doesn't even know it!" The red has faded to blond but I still have the firey red haired temper and you are probably still calm and cool. So neat to go back and relive some of those memories as an adult. I wish my Gracie could find a Lisa, Lisa and Maria for herself at school.

    Thanks for the portrait, I have never been an art subject before except with my kiddies!

  6. I love him. Very creative zipper!!

  7. these are great! I wish I had gotten 1/4 of the talent you did, but it seems it skipped me and went to Jacob. As for the childhood memories, well now you've got me thinking about things too. You did not and do not have a big head either..LOL we always had our hair done neat and in pig tails or braids from mom. I miss those days! Love you

  8. "Tell our child what we wish for her as a grown up"... Wow, I love that.

  9. Hi, Lisa!! Your empathy monster is adorable. I'm going to have to watch the videos about him and make one myself!!

  10. Lisa - I love the work you did for Tam's class - your face with the blue hair is so beautiful, and your empathy monster is wonderful too. Thanks for sharing what you've been doing.

  11. hey lisa I loved seeing everything you've done here. Clearly you put your heart and soul into each of these, and it shows. I have a photo of me somewhere with a six shooter and a cowboy hat (on my stick horse) that makes me think we would have been friends if we had lived next door. cute!

  12. Love all your Tam inspired art! Glad you have taken time to blog again!

  13. Wow - wonderful.
    I still have not finished the course... your fabulous work makes me want to do it right this second!!!
    (I absolutely adore your empathy monster)

  14. Love your art! Very inspiring. :)

  15. Your express yourself so beautifully, both in your art and with your writing. I've enjoyed you very much on our Sketchbook group and here. Congratulations on your score($200)! And, your recognition...bea


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