Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Easter Pretties

By Leslie Brier, Brier Design

The weather here has been crazy. It was 70 degrees last week, and yesterday we had a two-hour delayed school opening because of ice. I decided that I'm going to ignore the weather outside, and pretend it is springtime inside. I made a new batch of Easter Pretties.

I molded a batch of bunnies and lambs, and set them out to dry.

Next, they got a coat of paint, and a box to sit on. After that, I added more color to the boxes with colored pencils, vintage trims and flowers.

And a sprinkling of glitter was the finishing touch.

This batch of Easter Pretties was delivered to Chicks Picks by Hillary. We tried them out in one of her fabulous shadow boxes. I've decided that I definitely need one!

In the meantime, I've made a little more progress on my cuff bracelet.

And now, both dogs are wondering what I'm up to! That is Miss Marilyn Merlot on the left, and Miss Brigitte Bordeaux on the right.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Works in Progress

by Leslie Brier, Mixed Media Artist

Since I got my studio cleaned up, I've been getting into all kinds of new projects. I signed up for Elizabeth Woodford's Beaded Cuff Bracelet Class at FCCA (Fredericksburg Center for the Creative Arts). I spent a fun afternoon last Sunday sorting through my bead boxes and boxes of smalls to assemble a litte grouping of items I wanted to use for my bracelet. They were so pretty that I decided to photograph them. They might end up as the back of my new business cards.

I put them on the floor in front of the sliding glass door to take the photos. Miss Bordeaux was very puzzled.
 On Tuesday, I took the first part of the class. This is how far I'd gotten by the end of the class.
And this is Bordeaux, wondering why I am taking pictures when I could be playing with her.
I started this piece to hang in my living room. This is the first time I've made a piece specifically to go in my house.
This is how it loos now that I've added the background in. It's kind of in an ugly duckling phase at the moment. I'm going to go in and lighten it up. I'm not thrilled with the way the colors are working with each other. Most of my pieces go through a phase like this, so I've learned not to get too concerned about it.
I like the way this particular section is working, but it is a little too bright. I'm debating about whether to go over it with watered down paint or watered down gesso. I'm also trying to decide what color the 3-D birds will be. There an awful plastic faux woodgrain at the moment. Comments and suggestions are welcome.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Inspired Ideas!

By Leslie Brier, Brier Design
It's here, it's here! The latest issue of Amy Powers' Inspired Ideas magazine. This magazine is a mixture of artful ideas and eye candy that you have to see to believe.
I was so excited when Amy invited me to share a project with her readers.  My article, Shake It Up appears on page 122 of this issue. It describes how to make salt shaker pendants like the one shown  above.  Would you like to see a preview of the magazine?
You can click the link above to enjoy a 12-page peek, courtesy of Amy.

Sylvan's work is in this issue, too. Our bracelets are part of an artists' collaboration project - Off the Cuff. Each artist made a bracelet from the repurposed cuff of a dress shirt. I love classes and collaborations. It's always so interesting to me to see how each artist starts with the same basic materials and creates something that is uniquely their own.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Reality Check

We've had a lot of ice here resulting in lots of snow days. Which gave plenty of time to work on cleaning and organizing my studio. I was shocked at how much time it took to get it back on track. I spent more than forty hours to get the studio to the place I wanted it to be.  Ultimately, I'm glad it took that long, because it gave me a lot of time to think.
I spent the first few days feeling frustrated that my space was too small for all of the projects that I wanted to do. Now, I feel grateful for the space that I do have.

I was overwhelmed becaue I had so many projects that I wanted to get to. Now, I am feeling more focused.

The picture above shows how many bins of stuff I was able to donate, share with art friends, or rehome in my studio. That's a lot of stuff. Nobody needs that much stuff! I am concentrating on feeling grateful for the time, and space and ability that I have. And I can't thank the Amazing Alice enough.  She is the best organizer and most encouraging cheerleader ever! I'll post pictures of my "new" space next week.

One of the first projects that I worked on was new jewelry for the emporium at LibertyTown. This bracelet reminds me of the saying "as the crow flies". Okay, they're swallows, but you know what I mean.
These copper earrings are now at LibertyTown, too. I've been in a very birdy mood lately.

I also got a chance to do another pouring of Susan Lenart Kazmer's Ice Resin between bouts of tossing and sorting. The more I use this product, the more I like it. I have big plans. And now, I'll even have some elbow room when I'm putting pieces together. It doesn't get any better than that.