This weeks challenge at Inspiration Avenue is Pure. I could not think of anything else as pure as a child, so I decided to paint a little girl. It's my interpretation of a vintage picture that I have in my stash of goodies. I changed it up a tad to make it my own. I named my version Purity. I used acrylic paints on watercolor paper, embellishments for the flowers and added a few inked stamps for more interest.
Check out the other entries here at Inspiration Avenue after the noon deadline.
Thanks for looking.

Sunshine Award

"Sunshine Award"

I received this lovely blog award from two very special friends of mine....Maggie from The Magpie's Nest and Stephanie from Dragonfly Design Studios. A very sincere thank you goes out to both of you for thinking of me.

Maggie is a wonderful graphic artist who designs beautiful collage sheets and giclee art prints. She sells them in her Etsy store Magpie Mine.

"Wintry Women"

This is only one example of the type of work she does. Please check out all she has to offer. I love her work and I get lost in a retro fantasy as I browse through her huge selection.

My dear friend Stephanie paints like a dream. Her subject of choice is flowers from her garden. This is one of my favorite...


You can find her work here in her etsy store. She sells original paintings, greeting cards, and ACEO cards...and if this is not enough she also likes to make altered books.
Both ladies are so very talented and I'm honored to know them.

So the rules for accepting the Sunshine award are

~ Put the logo on your blog or within your post
~ Pass the award onto 12 bloggers ~
~ Link the nominees within your post ~
~ Let the nominees know they have received this award by commenting on their blog.
~ Share the love and link to the person from whom you received this award.

Here are my nominees:

Bunny @ I'm Just Sayin

Lisa @ The Wright Stuff

LuLu @ Coastal Sisters

Luthien @ Pimp & Paint

Pat @ Images Through an Open Window

Sherry @ Everyday Possibilities

Tammy @ Art and Inspirations

Please click all above links and enjoy these beautiful people.

For The Love Of Horses

This morning I drove home to visit my mom and sisters. I had a little time and the weather was so beautiful I had to stop off to take a few pictures. I love horses,... always have. When I was young we raised a few, but mostly my dad was a cattleman.... If you do not know, most ranchers like to raise one or the other. You either breed horses or you breed cows. I'm sure there is an exception but lets not go there. My dad did not like horses. He said they were hay burners.

I have been wanting to stop and take pictures of these horses for a while now. To me it looked like a small farm with a few horses here and there. There are always at least 3 or 4 horses scattered under the trees. It's on the way...right on the highway to Gonzales. It's such a picturesque site... horses grazing under the trees. I love it! I pulled off the road and jumped out of the car and took a few shots.
While I was there the owner drove up in his atv and told me his mares had some babies. He told me to drive up to the gate and they were right there for me to take pictures. So I did. It was just up the road.

"So Sweet"


The owner Mr. Jordan let me into the pen with the mares and colts. He had four babies which were only a few days old. The horses were surprisingly gentle and tame. Anyone could tell they were well taken care of.
"Buddy The Stallion"

I could not leave without taking a few shots of Mr. Jordan's prize stallion Buddy.
Mr Jordan the owner of this ranch breeds these horses to sell. He is such a nice man. I'm so glad I finally stopped to smell the roses....errr take a few photos. Dummy me did not realize that this place was horse ranch. I never noticed the amount of horses there before on my many trips to Yoakum. Goes to show you learn something every day. Oh and talk is cheap in small towns. I learned lots of gossip to tell my sisters and mom. The man ...Mr. Jordan knows some of my relatives. I love days like these...lol!

Searching for Texture

"Texture Picture Moss"

The weather has been so beautiful and pleasant that I had to take advantage of it by spending time outside. I grabbed my Cannon Digital SLR (which I love btw)... changed the lens to a macro and went to work. I walked around with camera in hand looking for interesting textures. I am now collecting fun textures like above for my digital art. We will see what I can come up with. I have not used this picture yet. I'm still taking the digital workshop I spoke of in previous posts....still in the learning phase.
Well I hope everyone is having a fun creative week doing what you love.

Antique Rose Pendant

"Pendant from Antique Rose Collection"

I've been a busy bee this week. I finally cleaned out my studio from top to bottom. It still looks the same but at least it is more organized. I mopped behind the tables and shelves, dusted and most of all threw out a few things. It feels so good. I love that feeling. Nothing better then a nice clean house or studio in this case. It took me a couple of days to clean so then obviously it felt great to be there. I immediately went to work on a set of pendants.
This one pictured is my favorite. I was able to make four out of the one plate. They all look so romantic clasped on a stand of pearls. The roses are very faded. The plate was aged to a perfect caramelly brown. Is caramelly a word? Well I just made it up if not. I've listed them in my Esty store so if you want to look at them all, check it out here!
Thanks for looking.
Hope everyone is having a fab week. It's been in the 70's here in good ole S.A. Needless to say I've been in heaven. I know it wont last. It's supposed to get cold again this weekend. Sooo "if you don't like the weather in Texas wait five minutes....it will change". lol!
Have a good one!

A Pocket Full Of Sunshine

"My Entry for Inspiration Avenue's Weekly Challenge"

The theme this week at Inspiration Avenue is "A Pocket Full of Sunshine".
I decided to do a page in my art journal which is something I have not done in a while. Working in my journal is so relaxing. I try not to put any pressure on myself and let my muse take over. It really felt good to get all messy with paints and ink again. Then as I worked the magic started to happen. The colors that came through told me I needed a fairy in a garden. I had visions of Tinker Bell throwing her magic dust everywhere. She became my own personal Fairy who brought sunshine and flowers and magic to my life. Wouldn't it be fun if we all could have are own Fairies who would bring us pockets of sunshine?

"Look and you will find it......what is unsought will go undetected."

Before And After

What a sight for San Antonio! Frozen water fountains!!!! Temperatures stayed in the 30's for three days straight. Or at least it felt like it. This fountain sits in front of one of my favorite Mexican restaurants. The manager forgot to turn the water off and left it running all through the night. We all thought it looked pretty neat.
Top photo is manipulated a little bit in photoshop. What do you think?

This photo here is the original photo. I was not too thrilled with the way the picture turned out. I did not like the background. It's so hard sometimes to get the shot you want. There is always something in the way. I played in photoshop adding all kinds of filters and textures and nothing was coming out right. I stared over a few times and then I decided to do something simple like take out the items I didn't like. I took out the column and the small gray box. I added a textured background...but not sure that did helped much..... and fiddled with the gradient tool. That's about it. I think top photo looks better.


"Would you tell me please , which way I ought to go from here?" "That depends a good deal on where you want to get to," said the Cat. " I don't much care where..." said Alice. " Then it doesn't matter which way you go" said the cat. ".....so long as I get somewhere," Alice added.

This weeks theme at Inspiration Avenue is Wonderland. It could be from "Alice in Wonderland" or it could be anything the imagination decides. Check out the site here to see what everyone comes up with. I'm sure it will be a delightful array of art for your eyes to feast on.
I love the above quote from "Alices Adventures in Wonderland." I feel this way alot. I don't care where I go as long as it's somewhere.....lol!
Hope you find your way.

Grungy Background

I'm so excited! I'm taking a digital workshop for photoshop, and I'm learning all kinds of stuff. This is one little sample of what I can do. It's a neat grungy background. I'm only about half way through the class, but so far I learned how to use the clone tool. It is such a useful tool! There is no way I would have learned to use this tool without the help of this class. This is the second class that I have taken with Gail over at creative workshops. If you want to learn about Photoshop you need to check her out here. I have Photoshop Elements which she works in as well......either Photoshop or an elements version is OK.
Hope you all have a wonderful weekend!
Stay warm!

Charlie Studio

Left side with easel and scraping supplies

Here is my main work station in my little studio. This is where I spend most of time. I thought I'd share my studio with everyone so you could see where I work.
I love my little studio. I'm so glad that I have this space all to myself. It's not much, probably not bigger then most people's closet. It's nice to have a place where you can leave a mess and shut the door so no one else has to look at it. And believe me, I'm a messy worker. When I get in the creative mode.....things are flying. I don't put anything back. Piles and piles of paper everywhere, bowls of water, dirty paint brushes and stamps seem to multiply as I work. I don't like to clean up until I'm finished.
I would like to clean it out, but I'm going to wait for warmer weather. I'm not sure I'll change it much. I thought of going to IKEA to buy all these matching shelves and desks but I really like my old antique y stuff. Much more character.

My grandmother's rocker.

There really isn't enough room for this rocker but I really like to sit in it when I need a break. I make the most of my space. You would not believe all I have in this studio. In the back is a rack for all of my scrapbook papers. Hanging from the ceiling are my funky chandeliers. Which I love. I used to have a string of Christmas lights hanging in the greenery. They eventually died and have not replaced them yet. Some of my older paintings are displayed on the wall.

The other side of my studio...what a mess!

On this side I have an old 50's dinette table courtesy of my antique shop days.
I sew here and I solder my broken china jewelry. You can't see them but to the right I have most of the vintage china stored in the cabinets. The rest of my tiles and mosaic collection are in the garage. On the left side wall , I painted the Eiffel tower. I even have an Eiffel tower lamp sitting next to the TV. And..... I even get cable back here...boy I'm spoiled!
My computer is set up in the office in the house. It's hooked up to a docking station with the printer and the other peripherals. This is a pain because each time I want to print something out I have to go inside.
Here is my shadow. Of course he has a bed in my studio. He has one in almost every room in the house. He follows me everywhere. In the summer the door behind him opens up to my back porch. I leave it open then and he can come and go as he pleases. Needless to say he and I both like warmer days better. I can't leave the door open during this cold weather and we are having some nasty cold this season. I hate it! Can't wait for the warmer days.
So this is where I work. I feel I'm very blessed to have this space. I have not always had this room. I used to work on my kitchen table. I had to move everything out of the way each evening. Now that was a real pain. I know I'm lucky to have this so that's why I thought I'd share some photos. I know a lot of people don't have this luxury. And then again I'm sure some of you have much nicer studios then mine. I'm happy with mine. Now all I have to do is get in there and go to work.

Happy Creating,
The Holidays are finally over. They were a whirlwind of fun and excitement for me and my family. It's always this way. The last month was a blur. I can't believe that not only is the year over but the decade is over too. Now it's time to settle down, go on a diet, start exercising again and most of all get back in my studio. It's been at least two weeks since I last stepped foot in my studio, maybe more. Sometimes I can not wait to get back to creating and then at the same time I feel I'm in a little bit of a slump. I feel no creative juices flowing through my veins. It's too cold. lol. My studio is off the garage, so the central heat does not make its way down there very well. I'd like to clean it out too. I'm in this cleaning and chunking everything out stage right now. I want to make room for more supplies and start the new year fresh and organized.
I am very much looking forward to getting back into the blogging grove. I have missed visiting all of you on a regular basis. I feel this past year I have really made some great friends here in blog land. I look forward to getting to know each of you even better. I love all your comments and feedback, so please don't stop. I'm still here.

I just wanted to mention that I reduced some of the prices on my broken china jewelry...so check out my etsy store. Not everything is reduced only a few items.

Keep on blogging,