Category Archives: Books

Intuitive Painting

Hi everyone. Hope you are all doing really well!

Okay…so, show of hands…who was looking forward to summer so badly? Couldn’t wait for the kids to be out of school…have things slow down a bit…enjoy the lack of rushed mornings and packed lunches. Sound familiar? Yeah…I was there too and now I’m kinda feeling overwhelmed/annoyed juggling a smattering of camps, all in different locations, a bored kid (when camp is over), running around like a taxi and basically having a complete lack of a schedule. Makes me a little on edge – especially when all I want to do is paint!

Now, don’t get me wrong. We’ve had a great summer so far. Got to take a few trips and make some memories with the kids but I guess I’m just a creature who likes rhythm. A consistency to each day that I can count on.

So…to soothe my nerves I’ve been spending a lot of time (when I can slip away) with my art books and journal. I’ve been incredibly inspried by Tracy Verdugo’s new book – “Paint Mojo“. Her work really speaks to me and feels so authentic and organic. You must check it out. She creates most of her work by way of Intuitive Painting, also called Expressive Painting, Soul Painting or Source Painting. Wondering what that is exactly? Well… I found this wonderful definition via here.

The medium of expressive painting exercises your creativity without concern for the results, develops greater trust in your intuition, expands your sense of freedom and possibility, and gives you a way to fearlessly explore unknown aspects of yourself.

I know it sounds a little woo woo…but I’m okay with that and let me tell you – it’s pure magic! Scary? Hell yeah. Exciting? Definitely. It is most of all – surprising! Surprising to see what unfolds in your Art, what forms arise and symbols come up.

This isn’t communing with any kind of spirit or anything like that. It’s just getting in touch with your inner self and removing the Ego, the BS, you know – all the junk that gets in the way – and letting all the beauty of your soul pour out onto your canvas. And sometimes that beauty can be kinda ugly at first and that’s ok. As you move through the work, it transforms. Remember, this kind of Art is not about the end product but rather the simple act of creating. I’ve done two works so far using this technique and they are really so different than anything I’ve ever made.

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This first attempt at making a background was tons of fun! Lots of scraping, stenciling, splattering and other fun paint verbs…

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Lots of layers, symbols and imagery came as I worked on this piece. I would often walk away when my mind would pause and then I would wander back as more images flooded in.

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This was my second Intuitve Painting back ground. Added some scraps of vintage paper to this one.

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These images came thru stronger, resulting in a more striking composition. I was braver with this one and I think you can see and feel that. Loved working in such vibrant colors even though it isn’t my typical palette. Screen Shot 2014-07-14 at 3.35.17 PM

I can’t wait to do more!!

Anyway, if you are in a creativity rut I highly recommend Tracy’s book or just pull out the Art books you already own and visit with them.

When you are ready…grab a canvas, leave your logical mind behind and let the paint flow! Be brave, trust your hand, your eyes and most importantly your heart!

Let me know if anyone gives it a go! I would love to see what you come up with! Feel free to shoot me an email with your images. It would be fun to feature some of your Intuitive Art on the blog!

Sending you all lots of love.

xo,

Ivy

P.S. Okay just found this amazing video from the amazing Intuitive artist – Flora Bowley…check it out. So beautiful!

 

 

 

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Filed under Art, Books, creativity, intuitive painting, Learning, mixed media, painting

Life lately…

Hello lovely people! How are you? Things are going very well in the Newport home. We just got back from celebrating Grace’s 8th birthday in Disneyland! The Claire Bear stayed home with the grandparents, so it was really special (and a hell of a lot easier) to just be able to spend time with Grace.

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She loved Disney…of course. Her favorite ride – Space Mountain! Below is the very embarrassing but hilarious shot that is taken while on board this insane roller coaster. Although, I look like I am about to be killed, I am actually having fun…sort of. Grace on the other hand, looks just thrilled and a lot less terrified! We laughed about this one for days…

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On the Art front, I finally completed my most recent abstract commission. It sat like this for a LONG time…

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Then one day, I just couldn’t fight it anymore…so I tackled the underpainting.

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And then finished it within a couple of days. My client loves it! Thank God! I’m so honored that it will be hanging in her front living room above the mantel. Screen Shot 2014-04-29 at 1.39.14 PM

I did the underpainting in acrylic and then went over the entire thing with these water-mixable oils that I am totally in love with! I was originally trained in oils and I’ve missed them ever since art school but once acrylics became so popular I just migrated over to them. Less toxicity and easy clean up but I’ve always missed the buttery richness and blend-able quality of oil paint. Discovering these has been exciting and I want to continue exploring them.

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So…the BIG news is that I leave for my very first Art Retreat on Thursday morning with my friend Katie! I can hardly wait! It is the Nuture Your Creative Seed Retreat hosted by the lovely, Serena Berry on the enchanting Bainbridge Island, WA.

The teachers will be Jeanne Oliver and Stephanie Lee!! SO EXCITED! Jeanne has been an inspiration to me for years and was truly the one that led me back to art, so it will be such an honor to meet her and learn from her in person. I adore Stephanie’s book and her whole thought process behind her creations, not to mention all the inventive techniques she has to share, so I know she will be an amazing mentor too! I feel so grateful to be able to experience this! Like deep in my bones grateful. 4 days of art, connection, creativity and even a dash of yoga. I couldn’t ask for more! Thank you, Katie for being brave enough to join me on this adventure!

I look forward to sharing my creations and experiences with you when I return!

Have a fabulous rest of the week!

Much love,

Ivy

 

 

 

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Filed under Art, Books, creativity, Learning, painting, Thoughts, Travel

Little time, lots of inspiration.

Hello friends,

I know I promised to share more art so here are some pics of what I’ve been creating lately. I’m on week 6 of my Jeanne Oliver online art course. Its been an incredible ride! So much to learn, so much to create and SO little time! I’m trying to be patient with life and accept that I can’t paint all day while managing a household, two little kids and a very busy husband. Patience is not one my strengths.

I also have to really watch myself. You see, I get a little competitive. My fellow students are constantly posting all the beautiful art they are creating and I want to KEEP up…but alas, I simply cannot.  Luckily, we have access to the class for two years!

Here is a little Cézanne watercolor/charcoal study…this was a fun and relatively quick exercise. He was a genius at layering color with watercolors! Something, I’ve yet to master.

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Next, I attempted to paint one of Cézanne’s favorite landscapes…Mont Sainte-Victoire. He painted this scene over 60 times! This was a tricky one. SO many colors but I really enjoyed the challenge.

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Here’s a close up of my version.

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Painting Cézanne landscapes, inspired me to try one myself. Although, I’m not in love with this piece it was good for me to do something outside my comfort zone. This is an Irish landscape, depicting O’Brien’s tower.

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Then we went on to study Botticelli. I have not done my painting yet but I loved sketching from his work. His faces are brilliant and so beautiful.

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Okay, and lastly, I wanted to recommend this book to all those creative Mama’s out there! I kinda horde art books but this one is my favorites right now. It gives me hope that if I plan a little better, I can find more time for my art and not neglect my kids!

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Alright…well I best be going. I hear little Claire bear waking from her nap. Back on the job! ;)

Hope all is well in your world. Try and take time for yourself to create, read, cook or whatever makes you happy – you won’t regret you did! Also, I would love to know any tips on carving out this time – since I’m kinda struggling! Let me know what works for you!

Much love,

Ivy

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Filed under Art, Books, creativity, Learning, painting, Thoughts

Happy Valentine’s Day

Hello friends! Happy Friday and Happy Valentines’s to you. I hope you are surrounded by the people you love. Hubby and I are going out for a much needed date night. Can’t wait to get all prettied up and sip a fancy cocktail.

I did splurge yesterday on a little gift to myself – this book – and I’m so pleased I did. I’ve already devoured half of it and I’m loving every page. If you were a fan of Eat, Pray, Love then you will LOVE Paris Letters by Janice Macleod. I’m so tickled with the book that I just subscribed to receive one of her magical, illustrated letters from Paris via her Etsy shop. Anyways…had to share this with you!

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Okay I’m off to get ready for my date….it takes a while these days! ;)

Much love to you all,

Ivy

P.S. I’ve been doing a ton of art so I promise to share more of it next week! More vintage treasures to show you too!

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Filed under Books, favorite things, Love, News, Paris, photography, Still life

Art Journaling : Brené Brown Class

Hi there! How’s life? Things have been going well here and I’ve been diligently working on my Brené Brown art journal homework from the Oprah life class. Following along with the book has been truly life changing. The messages within have been resonating deeply with me as I become aware of my own issues with perfection, shame and self-worth – pretty heavy, I know. BUT so inspiring and refreshing at the same time!

I’ve had several “ah-ha” moments that made me smile while other pages brought on the tears. One huge epiphany I experienced, was when I realized the cause of my recent creativity block. It wasn’t because my creative juices ran dry or I ran out of inspiration…it was because I was focusing on attaining approval rather than just being authentic. I wasn’t creating for me. I was creating for others and seeking praise. All of sudden, the likes on Facebook didn’t make me feel good anymore, the hearts on Instagram didn’t mean anything. I felt numb. So I stopped making art. Joy was replaced with doubt.  Understanding why this happened has brought me great clarity.

Working in my very first art journal has renewed my creativity and given me the chance to further digest the information in the book. I had promised to share some of the pages with you…so here they are…

I thought that the first assignment was very appropriate. That scary first white page was dedicated to giving yourself permission.

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Next, we had to take pictures of ourselves with our “Pledge” written on our hand – “I’m imperfect and I’m ENOUGH!” Love that.

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The class went on to explore the word – COURAGE and it’s original meaning: to tell the story of who you are with your whole heart. Then we listed the people in our lives that we trust and share our story with. We placed this list in the center of our heart. I wrote the word “Thank You” on my list to remind myself to be eternally grateful to these special people.

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Then we were assigned to find a photo that captures our “true self” and write about who we see, what makes this person light up and how we need to treat her. Loved how this exercise made me feel.

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This last collage kinda just happened…the inside of the journal cover needed some art! :)

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As I mentioned, I’ve never art journaled before and I’m really loving it! I’m getting a little braver with my materials and exploring new ways to blend words and images.

Have you ever kept an art journal? If you do, I would love to hear how you like to use it.

Hope your week is full of inspiration.

xo,

Ivy

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Filed under Art, Books, collage, creativity, Favorite Reads, Learning, mixed media, painting, Thoughts, Words

Inspired by the Creatively Made E-Course

Hello!!! I know it’s been forever and I’m sorry but I’m back and I’m just full of inspiration – thanks to the fabulous E-course I’m taking by Jeanne Oliver.  My first trimester was trying at times, tired, nauseous, weepy but now that I’m well into my second trimester I’m feeling like myself again. While my cravings for chocolate have yet to subside, a forceful urge to create art has emerged, so when I found this course via the Dreamy Whites blog I signed up immediately! Jeanne has always inspired me with her whimsical creations and beautiful art, so what better teacher to help me break out of my creative rut?!

Our first project was to assemble a vintage art journal. A place where we can sketch, doodle, paint and dream. I couldn’t wait to begin. Here is the final result…

Cutting up a vintage book felt so naughty but I knew I wasn’t destroying it, just up-cycling it!

Embellishing the cover with vintage costume jewelry and an old crystal drawer pull was so much fun! I actually raided my husbands tool box and used pliers and screwdrivers! (I’m not what you would call handy…)

The antique illustration was taken from an old Shakespeare book…who can resist Romeo and Juliet? Not this Romantic…

Inside the front cover I added a little brown paper pouch to keep little pretties and the word “faithful” to remind myself to stay true to my creative spirit. The pages are compiled of vintage papers, scrapbook pages, watercolor and sketch paper. Lots of different textures to provide a wonderful backdrop to my creations.

I bound the book using this very handy hole-punch and some organic hemp twine.

Finally I found a use for all the shiny, sparkly baubles I’ve been collecting. It was so delightful to play with them.

I’m really happy with my little journal. Making it brought me such satisfaction and re-ignited that drive to create. I better do it now before I’m buried in diapers! Right?

Hope you are all enjoying the New Year! Let me know what creative goals you have on the horizon…

xo,

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Filed under Art, Books, Crafting, News, photography, Thoughts, vintage