Thursday, December 19, 2013

Remembering the Snowman

For about ten years now I have used my own art for Christmas cards.  It's one of the traditions I enjoy most.  Its a labor of love and I keep a card from every year.  It's great to look back at them all and remember the inspiration.  I've painted poinsettias, cardinals, pine cones, snow scenes, holly and so much more.  It's a challenge and lots of fun to hunt for the next idea to turn into a card.  This year I find myself behind the eight ball.  Something has to give.  And I think, it's the card...

It's not that I didn't create the art.  I did that last year!  But in the rush of things to do I waited too long and the shipping to get them here on time is outrageous!  Reluctantly, I decided to send just the Christmas letter with the art at the top. Sometimes we have to make concessions.  This will be the first time in many years that friends and family wont get a card from us along with the letter.  

Before trying to order cards, I put up the tree and got out the decorations. I was late getting out the Christmas decorations too!  Let's blame it on a late Thanksgiving, shall we?  While I was setting out my small group of snowmen, my favorite snowman fell to his death!  I was surprised it upset me so much.  I try not to get to attached to "things".  In fact, over the last few years I've culled my Christmas chotchkies down to a lesser cast of overkill.  Every year as I pack them away I ask, did I LOVE seeing this and is it worth packing up this year and unpacking next?  It's made a difference in helping me keep only what has real meaning, a memory or just brings me joy.  

Back to the point.  The snowman causality upset me, until...I remembered I
had immortalized him in a painting!  The painting I created last year for this years card (that will not make an appearance), is in fact a still life grouping of my snowman chotchkies, with the now shattered favorite -- front and center! 

Maybe I should rethink getting rid of the cast of characters I store for Christmas?   They have been a source of wonderful inspiration for my cards. keep my eye out for next years subject!  

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Countdown to Christmas

Countdown to Christmas!
Have you made your list and checked it twice?
Need some ideas?  
I'm SURE you've been nice!

 If your like me, you have lots to do right now.  I hope you have a quick minute to read the latest installment in the "tools" series for Watercolor 101 on Empty Easel.  (Click the highlighted text to read the article)  This series has detailed all the tools you need to start painting in watercolor.  Make that list and give it to Santa--then paint with me!

 Beginning in January I will begin a series on basic watercolor technique to get us started painting.  They are perfect for the beginner or those who need a refresher.  If you know anyone who might be interested in these upcoming articles, please share them with your friends!

 I also have some fun exciting things planned in the New Year for my faithful blog readers--yes that's YOU!--so stay tuned!  I will roll them out beginning the first week of January.  As always, I hope you enjoy it and thanks for reading!

Friday, December 6, 2013

Watercolor Easels on Empty Easel Magazine

Here's a link to my latest article about easels in the Watercolor 101 series on Empty Easel. I hope for those of you new to watercolor these articles have been helpful.  In the new year I will be writing tutorials on how to paint in watercolor.  Stay tuned and thanks for reading!

Thursday, December 5, 2013

How To Make This Christmas More Creative

Something as simple as Christmas lights can be an expression of creativity.
Have you seen those houses that have whole light shows?  

I love art and artists!  I enjoy every form of art.  I love, love, love, (did I say LOVE) music and have great respect for those who have mastered those skills to a point where they can express themselves creatively.  (just like any artist and art form)  Because I know the work it takes to master a set of skills in the visual arts, and because I've dabbled at playing the piano and singing in choirs, I am always in awe of the creativity behind a musical composition or vocal arrangements and so on.  Below is a link to some pretty creative guys and a piano for your viewing pleasure :)

The arts bring a fullness to life that I think we can take for granted.  I gave myself and now you, the challenge to find ways to make art a more intentional part of the holidays.  How can you do that?  Its as simple as buying a new Christmas CD.  Below is a list I've made.  See if any of these ideas hit a note with you.  Any ideas I missed?  Do you have any creative ideas?  Leave a comment on my blog or Facebook page MichelleMorrisArt so we can share ideas and creativity this Holiday Season!    

I saw this on Facebook and wanted to share some Holiday Cheer as well as some pretty creative guys and a piano!  

                                                  Link:  Angels We Have Heard on High

Some Creative Ideas for this Christmas:
  • create a painting and use it to make your own Christmas Cards
  • gather a group of friends and go caroling
  • have a party and invite others to bring a gift to exchange they made (a twist on the white elephant) 
  • find a new way to dress your tree that reflects your personality
  • attend the Nutcracker preformed by your local ballet troupe
  • attend the symphony's holiday performance
  • for those with snow: have you ever though of a snow man as sculpture?  Build a creative snowman!
  • do a visual journal for advent 
  • write a song or some poetry with the holiday theme
  • take your camera and shoot your favorite aspect of the holidays in a creative way
The list is as endless as we are creative!   Have a creative holiday season and a happy (creative) Thursday!