Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Sharing JOY!

Fall at Tallulah Gorge in north Georgia...JOY!

Jamie Ridler asks today: What do you wish to share?
All week I've pondered the question posed last Wednesday--what luxury do you wish for?
My first thought then was the luxury of generosity, which led to the many ways that one can be generous without financial means, which led to the response to today's prompt, even before it was asked!

I can share JOY!
I can be just as generous as I want to be!
Joy doesn't have to cost a dime; true joy is not attached to any monetary expense or reward.
I have started taking note of those moments of pure joy in my days, and expressing gratitude for them.

I feel joy when
* my almost 13 year old climbs onto my lap, throws her arms around me and sighs "Mama, I love you"
*I smell fall in the air and see the leaves dancing in all their glorious colors
* my little nephew comes bounding into my house and asks "what art are you working on today Jennifer? Can I do that too?"
*I have my first nibble of 90% chocolate with peppermint tea when I sit down at my computer each morning
* I realize my 16 year old knows how to apologize
*someone tells me that my art makes them feel happy
*my husband snuggles in and tells me that I'm his best friend
*I understand...and this is one of my greatest joys....that my adult children were listening!
They actually listened and learned from what I've always tried to teach them. And they're good people! *wiping a happy tear*

How can one feel that kind of joy and not want to share it?!

What brings YOU joy today?

And what do you wish to share?

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Oh My Yes....Spill It Online Workshop

Yes indeed; I want to sign up for this online workshop!
And after you see her joy and excitement and some of Carmen's work, I'm betting you will too!

I apologize; I know it's short notice (I AM the Queen of Last Minute, you know!)---The class starts Thursday.

Here's a slideshow of Carmen's work, and there's another, longer video about the Spill It workshop on her site.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

It's Wednesday

and that means Wishcasting on Jamie Ridler's blog.
Today ---- what luxury do you wish for?

My first inclination, the first thought that hit me-- The luxury of generosity, being able to give to others the way that I would like to.
The second thought was shame, because of the painful realization--- Generosity should not be a luxury! We shouldn't feel that we can only give when we have the money!
True generosity comes from the heart, not the wallet.

And so I feel often I feel the inclination to create something for someone, to send them a note, even just give them a call, but I don't. More often than not it's a lack of time, nothing to do with finances.

Look at that beautiful photo above----this is what my world looks like right now during my favorite time of the year; I feel blessed.
Today is my birthday, and it's been fabulous! My family has given me some wonderful, thoughtful, very personal gifts---a serious pair of scissors (that had better not EVER be seen in anyone else's hands!), a gorgeous Alphonse Mucha print, a Led Zeppelin pictorial history, an itunes gift card, even a Lisa Frank kitty cat folder (don't ask...ancient inside joke). My oldest son is taking me to lunch at the Grit in Athens. And I love Facebook today---I didn't realize I had so many friends until they all started wishing me a happy day!

Thank you Jamie, for opening my eyes today gratitude and the luxury of generosity.
I wish for all of us the luxury of generosity.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Latest Belly Painting

Here we have mom, Lili Hill, painted by tattoo artist Chris Parry.
Lili was photographed by Athens photographer Courtney Goldman.
For more information on this calendar project, visit Marion's Facebook page.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Davis Reunion 09

The 2009 Grady and Birdie Davis reunion will be held on Saturday October 10 at 4:00 at Moon's Grove Baptist Church.

Just something I cooked up....would've loved to make it into a t-shirt design---

Phoenix Rising---Our First Contributor!

How cool is this??
Just got our very first submission for the Georgia Theatre art quilt project (aka Phoenix Rising).
It's by Athens artist Jamie Calkin---his take on the beloved Georgia Theatre, showing the marquee just as it was the day that it burned. Thank you Jamie!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Halloween Fun!

I know; I know it's late in the season, but I simply can not resist!
I have the gallery space available (at my husband's studio in Athens); I have several Halloween projects of my own in the works, and oh my goodness....who doesn't love to cut loose and play at Halloween?! I'm not sure which I love best, Halloween or Christmas...hard to say.

This is also a great way to introduce Tim's studio to the community. He just recently set up shop in downtown Athens.

My oldest son Parker coined the event name Penumbra---
Pronunciation: \pə-ˈnəm-brə\
Function: noun
Etymology: New Latin, from Latin paene almost + umbra shadow
: a space of partial illumination (as in an eclipse) between the perfect shadow on all sides and the full light
: a surrounding or adjoining region in which something exists in a lesser degree : fringe
: something that covers, surrounds, or obscures : shroud a penumbra of secrecy

Of course, the original name that he came up with was perfe
ct--- Delirium Nocturnum---
until I realized it was the name of a beer.
But come on! Delirium, a nod to one of our favorite authors, Neil Gaiman, and combined with nocturnum? Crazy Night?!! Perfect!
However,'s a keeper. Great one Parker! Than

We plan to accept artwork (any media; ready to hang/display) up until October 21.
Then we'll have a reception (open to the public, free admission) on Saturday October 24 at 7 pm.
All artwork will be available for sale, unless otherwise indicated. The exhibit will remain until Halloween evening.

If you'd like more information, or would care to participate, give me a call or email; we'd love to share our Halloween frivolity with you!
And please do help us to spread the word!

OK, So I Didn't PROMISE.....

I didn't promise my sister that I wouldn't post her artwork today!
She has this project going on that she's calling P.O.P. d'Art (Photos of Pets Digital Art).
The above work is her own beloved Poco on a notecard.
I am strongly encouraging her to pursue this idea!
I'll let you all know when she's set up her blog, Etsy site, etc, but I couldn't wait to share this and get some feedback on it for her!

If you'd like to send Jill some love, encouragement, or find out how to commission her, leave your comments here. I will be more than happy to forward them to her.

Go Jill!

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Another Mother....

Looks like Marion's project is moving right along!

Busy today, tweaking the blog and pondering a name for the Halloween project I'm producing.....
Stay tuned!

Friday, September 11, 2009

More Mamas, More Bellies

This week's crop of painted bellies!
A few more and Marion will have a calendar full.
Check out her Facebook page here

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Separated at Birth?

Nah...not when you look more closely.

There was some discussion about whether the drawing I'd included on my I'm All I Need post was me or my daughter Hannah.
The drawing was based on a photo of me at age 12.
Above are some photos of Hannah and me, side by side for comparison.

I've been using the photo of the 12 year old me in an ongoing project; I consider that image me at my most perfect, before I "forgot" who I was.

I borrowed the idea from artist Nic Hohn in the March/April 09 issue of Cloth Paper Scissors magazine.
I removed the color, then blew out the contrast in the photo using Photoshop Elements. I erased my hair, then made multiple copies of the new, "blank" me.
I've enjoyed playing with the image in a special journal, exploring various aspects of myself, even creating and trying on new identities. The more I play, the more I learn about myself.
I'll share more from this journal later on.

Phoenix Rising

Big Announcement! Jumped into this project now with both feet, so look out!

This is written in press release form (no, I am not that arrogant!); just easier to re-post than to try to explain it. For those of you who are not local, the Georgia Theatre is an Athens landmark. Many Athens bands got their start there, and many, many big names have played there over the years. The theatre was completely gutted by fire earlier this summer, and was under-insured. It must be re-built!

Please forward to your art-friends! AND your musician friends!

Georgia Theatre Art Quilt

It's no surprise that the music community of Athens has rallied in the support of its beloved Georgia Theatre in hopes of soon rebuilding it. They've done an admirable job in their fund-raising efforts.

Though Athens is widely known for its music scene, the world should also know that Athens has an impressive art scene as well!

Local artist Jennifer Schildknecht hopes to unite the music and art communities in order to generate more love and support for the Athens landmark.

“Musicians are not the only ones with fond memories of the Georgia Theatre! And they're by no means the only ones with a voice!”, says Jennifer.

She is extending a call to artists and musicians (as well as business and private individuals) locally and globally, inviting them to participate in creating an art quilt.

The finished quilt(s) will be auctioned at a later date to raise capital for the theatre rebuilding.

Jennifer, aka Moon Mama, describes the art quilt as “non-traditional” wall-hanging; in other words “this ain't your granny's quilt!”. Each block will be a work of art in and of itself, no sewing required; in fact, no fabric is required. Shown below are some sample blocks made by Jennifer, which include canvas, fabrics, hand-dyeing, yarns, embroidery floss, glue, ink, paint, rubber-stamping, cardboard, markers, charms, fiberfill, hand-stitching and machine-stitching.

“I would love to see at least 2 similar, if not identical blocks from each contributor, so that two quilts can be made---one to auction and one to give as a gift to the Georgia Theatre. I would love for the Theatre to have that outpouring of love displayed right there in the new building”. There is no limit to the number of blocks one can contribute. “If there are enough blocks, I would be thrilled to make yet another quilt, so that we could auction one locally AND one globally (perhaps on, as well as donating one to the Theatre itself”, Jennifer explains.

The actual donation of the blocks will be commemorated as well. Jennifer's husband is Athens photographer Timothy Schildknecht, of Visual Artistry and Magic and the Fringe Collective. He plans to be on hand whenever blocks are handed over to Jennifer, keeping a photographic record of the entire undertaking. “We're open to making each donation from artist, band or business into an 'event'. Businesses should feel free to present their ideas for collaborating to us to make this even more of a community effort” say the Schildknechts.

All blocks should be turned in to Jennifer by Friday, October 23.

A date has not been set as of yet for the auction of the completed quilt, nor has a venue for the auction been selected.

There are only a handful of basic guidelines for creating a block for the wall-hanging--

Each block must be 12x12”, with a ½” space left along all four edges, allowing it to be sewn into the quilt.

Absolutely any media may be used as long as it doesn't interfere with the flat hanging of the quilt, or in other words, nothing overly heavy.

Free creative expression is encouraged, but no health codes should be violated!

The finished block should be signed by the creator(s) on the front, and include a card on the back with all contact information.

Watch for future announcements concerning the Phoenix Rising Georgia Theatre Art Quilt Project, or the posting of photos here---

Phoenix Rising Georgia Theatre Art Quilt Project page on Facebook

Jennifer's blog at

If you have questions about the project, or would like to participate, contact Jennifer Bond Schildknecht on Facebook, or at, or at 706-540-2712

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

I'm All I Need

I'm All I Need

If I learned nothing else in my “Year of Doing Nothing”, I discovered that I am all I need. I am enough....just like I am. Constantly struggling to change or better myself is, in reality, not necessary.

I found that I could trust myself; my own opinions and feelings were valid....I didn't need to ask anyone for their permission; I didn't have to weigh their opinions in order to act. Heck, I don't even need to feel rejection when my girlfriend doesn't answer her cell phone (I've also realized that half the time, she just can't find it!)!

Some of you already empowered women may laugh; some of you may snicker nervously to yourselves, but I'm betting most of you are silently nodding in agreement; you know exactly what I'm talking about, maybe not even consciously, but you're feeling that little ping of agreement in your gut.

Most of us were shut down as young girls. I was relieved to discover earlier this summer that I was SO not the only one who felt this way! Read more of our conversation at my new friend Christine's blog

It's been a long, slow, often painful climb to where I am right now, and though life's not perfect, I'm pleased to be able to say—I am enough.

This is Freedom From Self Improvement week over at Jennifer Louden's place Yeah, I know---the week is half over, but there are still lots of delicious freebies to be found there.

I'd been slowly digesting what Jen had to say on the matter over the last little bit, but yesterday's blogpost from Creative Juices artist Chris Zydel pushed me over the edge, and she has graciously allowed me to share some of it (ok, a big chunk of it!) with you.

“Somewhere along the line.... I got kind of burned out on trying to fix myself. I had spent most of my 20's, all of my 30's and half of my 40's trying to get better. To heal old wounds and improve myself so that I could have a happier and healthier life. In many ways it's been a very worthwhile journey and I've made some powerful and much needed changes in my overall existence.

But at a certain point I also began to realize that it was not very much fun to always be scrutinizing myself for what was wrong with me. That I would have a much better and more enjoyable experience if I took my attention off of what was not working and put it onto what was already easy and good instead. It was making the shift away from what I didn't like or shouldn't be and moving more in the direction of my hearts desires. It was letting go of "Never Enough" and embracing the question "Where Is My Joy?" much of what drives us to change is based on fear and shame. We believe that we're not good enough, we are continually cowering under the shadow of a deep sense of inadequacy, we walk around feeling really bad about who we are and constantly vowing to making ourselves into a new and upgraded version of our old and unacceptable selves. We spend all kinds of time and energy and money polishing up our image, whether it's physically through trying to lose a few pounds or emotionally by whipping ourselves into a constant state of bright eyed, cheerleader, peppy, positivity .

We THINK that we're doing a good thing by trying to "improve". But really it's a sneaky way for the inner critic to get it's hooks in us. Every time we are driven to make ourselves "better" we are not allowing ourselves to accept who and what we are, just as we are in this very moment, as completely and utterly perfect.”

Amen Sister! Don't take my word for it, Friends---it's being shouted from the rooftops all over!

You are all you need! You are enough!

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Marion's March of Dimes Calendar Project

My friend Marion Mullinax is coordinating what promises to be an amazing project!
She's coordinating 12 expectant mamas with 12 local artists, and having their bellies photographed by 12 local photographers.
She's putting all the painted bellies together into a calendar, available later this year, as a fundraiser for the March of Dimes.

Of course Moon Mama participated, painting her Moon Mama logo on a deliciously blossoming mama's belly!
And my husband Tim (aka the Canadian), a photographer himself, is participating as well---
he's taken some of the shots, and he's opened up his Athens studio, Visual Artistry and Magic, for all the action

Shut up and DO IT!

Just how long have I been pondering the notion of beginning my own blog?
Months, maybe years....
How long since I created the graphics for it? I'd rather not say.

Do all artists sit here, staring at a blank screen, wondering if they really have anything to say that would be of interest to anyone else??

Lee Iacocca summed it up and
gave me a swift kick in the
pants this morning--->

This, for me, has been the Year of Doing Nothing..... a time of healing, recovering
and reconnecting, and the realization that it is true --- there is nothing more pathetic than an artist who is not creating. Now is the time to bring myself back from the brink, back to life, to take my art seriously.

And I want to share it all with you!
It's now or never.

This is my first step.

I'd love it if you'd hold my hand; we'll start down this path together.

Shall we?