Saturday, 10 October 2015

Nature Hanger

I've been working on this little clay nature hanger for a couple of weeks, as I have the time. And yesterday, I finished it! I started off by collecting beautiful leaves from around our yard and pressing them into air dry clay (forgot to take pics sorry!) that I rolled out with a rolling pin and cut to size. I was sure to add small holes at the top and bottom for string. I decided to have some that are the actual shape of the leaf and others that are circles and ovals, just for some variety.

After the clay had spent about 5 days drying (doesn't need that long, but that's when I had spare time again!) I painted them in the colours that I wanted (gold, chocolate and caramel) and then let them dry.

I added gold and bronze leaf to the leaf prints as well, for added interest and well ... just because I'm a bit addicted to leafing actually!

I then went about threading the clay pieces together just with normal raw string, making sure that the string went through behind the clay piece, not on the front of it. 

I strung the pieces in odd numbers and then hung three strands of them off of a branch that I just picked up from out in the yard!

All that was left to do was to hang it up and enjoy!! I really like it and I think it turned out beautifully!

What have you been creating this week?! 

Have a great weekend!

Monday, 5 October 2015

New Lessons

I agree with the recent statement about creativity from Claire De Boer, when she says,

"So much of it is about nurturing something within; and the more it is nurtured the more it develops into something strong and beautiful, not unlike watering and feeding a plant".

It gives a picture of not demanding from ourselves, but letting our creativity have room to breath and develop. Giving our creativity the permission to make mistakes, to not always have to create a masterpiece. To not have to always get it right. To not even always have to create something that must be seen. 

People interpret art differently. Art serves different purposes for different people. It takes on different forms for different people. 

In our recent entry into our regional art competition, the outcome for me was no prizes. Am I bothered? Absolutely not! For me, it was never about winning in the first place. It was about being around creative people who 'get it'. They get that urge to create that won't be silenced until the brush is on the canvas, or the pencil is in the hand, or the hammer at the ready. 

There is no point in me beating myself up about not winning a place. There can only be one winner, and that's how it is.It does me, or you, absolutely no benefit whatsoever when we compare our art negatively to the work of others.

I said negatively for a reason.

I did compare my work with others that night. But not from the perspective of 'I really shouldn't have entered' or 'my work is pathetic'. Having my work up on display alongside other artists, allowed me to compare honestly, where I'm at as an artist. I was able to see that while my art is good, with classes, it could be a lot better (as I've not really had any). I don't think I would have been able to realize the opportunity to develop myself as an artist, through doing some classes, if I hadn't seen my work with the others. I'm very thankful for seeing that learning more really does assist with better expression and technique in the artwork. 

So my encouragement to you today is? To put yourself out there. Don't be discouraged in yourself if you don't win prizes. Art is about so much more than prizes. Open your eyes to see the learning opportunities that come from events like this and be thankful that we have a plethora of ways that we can increase, develop, hone and nurture our creativity.

Don't give up on yourself. Keep right on trying and creating. You can do it! You'll be so glad you did!

P.S. My eldest daughter did come second place in the children's category for her piece titled 'Summer Time'. She was very shocked and we are very proud of her
for giving it a go!