Monday, May 30, 2011

Over the Edge and Arcimboldo Self Portraits

 by Leslie Brier, Brier Design Studio

I wanted to share some of our finished Art and Soul Projects with you. My daughter and I took Stephanie Rubiano's "Over the Edge" class. We worked on cradled hardboard, and learned all kinds of new techniques. Stephanie takes great care to ensure that projects are well-made and of archival quality. That is something that I really appreciate.

This is my finished project. I used a photo that I had of my daughter dressed as a fairy.
When I took the Stephanie Lee class last winter, my classmate and kindred spirit, Annie, gave me a book page. The words "A fairy legend" worked perfectly with the image.
 This is my daughter's completed project. The tag says: "Take the road less traveled by". Didn't she do a great job?

 The last class that we took was Pam Carriker's Arcimboldo self-portrait class.

This was the original image that my daughter used.

And this was her finished self-portrait. It turned out great!

 This is the original image that I used.

And this was my finished portrait. As you can see, my daughter's project was much more successful than mine. I added a lot of paint, because I was unsure of myself. The good news is, that I learned a lot from the project, and I'm planning to try it again soon. Pam's methods definitely take the scary out of portrait painting.
This is Pam signing our book. You can see a couple of the other class portaits in the background. Pam's book is called Art at the Speed of Life. I am really enjoying this book. It is just the pick-me-up I have needed with the schedule I've been keeping these days.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Where Have I Been?

by Leslie Brier, Brier Design Studio

Note: I am going to whine for a moment, so if you don't want to read the whiney part, you can skip straight down to the pictures.

Ever since I got back from Art and Soul, my life seems to be on fast-forward. Work-wise, I'm juggling a whole bunch of projects at once. On the home front, my son is getting ready to graduate from high school, and my daughter is going through SOL testing. I'm trying to get the house company-ready, meet all my deadlines, and still have some time to create.

Oh, and there's a snake in my garage. And it won't leave. When we get brave and try to chase it out, it just slithers back further into my garage. I would post a picture of it, but then, every time I go to my blog page, I'll get cold chills all over again. I feel sorry for it, but I really, really, really want it out of my garage.

I feel better now.

Guess what I got for Mother's Day? One-third of an antique booth, that's what. I've decided that it's time to put all of my hunting and gathering skills to good use. My friends Suzanne and Jolie and I went together on a space in an antique mall.

This is how the booth looked when I left it today. I think we did a pretty good job of mixing together all of the different stuff we had.

Jolie brought in this cool manly mannequin. I covered him with all kinds of little goodies.
I just got that bird cage. I decided to take it straight to the booth, before I fell in love with it.
The teller at the drive-through at the bank saw the cage and  asked me if there was a live bird in there. I totally forgot there was a bird cage in my car. And I was still freaked out about the snake in the garage, so I'm thinking that suddenly there's a live bird in the back of my car. After I freaked out for a minute, I realized what she was talking about, and so I blurted out, "No! But there's a snake in my garage!" Now I'm wondering if I need to change banks, or just pretend I was drinking at the time.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Art and Soul Vendor Night and "In the Garden" Charm Swap

by Leslie Brier

Didja miss me? My daughter and I just got back from Art and Soul in Hampton, Virginia and we had the most amazing time! We squeezed so much into three days that I'm going to have to do more than one post. And I'm not going to remember what order everything happened in, so I'll just download some photos and ramble on about them.

First of all, my daughter and I had the world's best roommate, my coolio art friend,  Janet Moss. She is the best at planning ahead, networking, and helping me justify my "junk" purchases. I'll have a post soon about the gorgeous scarf she is wearing.  This was us heading to Vendor Night which is an artsy junker's paradise!
Look at the amazing stuff I got! I bought a pocket watch from Sue at Vintage Rescue Squad that I'd had my eye on. The baby and the pin cushion with the baby on top came from Beth and Suzy of Dime Store Chic, and those two ribbons hanging in the back came from John Whiting of Whiting's Old Paper. He has the most amazing paper collection you can imagine. His store is a definite must for an ephemera excursion.

Before I left for Art and Soul, I signed up for a charm swap. Here is the bunch of charms that I sent to Hampton.
This is a closeup of one of the charms.

And this is the glorious assortment of charms that I received! Each one is so beautiful. I felt so grateful to be part of such a talented group of women. Opening each of the charms reminded me of getting valetines back in grade school It was all so exciting! (You can click on the photo for a closer look at each one.)
Anne Koussa made this beautifully presented charm. It actually brought tears to our eyes!

Here are charms made by Melissa Robertson, Gail Cervarich, Carol Dee Myers, Donna Butcher, S.K. Berman, Janet Moss and  Kristina Penhoet.

These were done by Theresa Hope-Goddard, Patti Reinheimer, Deborah Petronio, (the adorable baby face flower) Lorie Garver, and Dawn Gallop. (Yes, that is a tiny garden gnome!)
Still more came from Marcy Wyatt, Carol Dee Myers, and Julie Armstrong who organized the whole group, and had adorable little bags for us, and flowers for us to wear as well.

I missed getting a closeup of the group of charms at the top of the first photo, but they were made by Erin E. Montgomery, Linda Simon, Margaret Rodriquez, Karen Fllerton, Tammy Marie Bacot, Catherine Mein and Linda Hawkins.

The original concept of the swap was to make one necklace out of all of the charms. However, each one is so beautiful, I think they merit their own necklace or bracelet. I have a lot of jewelry to make!