Archive of ‘Uncategorized’ category

Lisa's Contest Swag

This is a photo of Lisa – the winner of my BIG Contest. Here she is with all of her contest swag! Thank you Lisa for sending this. Don’t you just love Lisa’s studio? She has a wall of folk art paints behind her…..lucky girl! Have fun with your contest winnings Lisa!

I just wanted thank all of you from the bottom of my heart for the well wishes you sent for my Mom. I really appreciate it! Some of you left messages in the comments section and some on my facebook wall. My Mom had her shoulder operation yesterday – she had to have a steel ball, plate and pins put in. She’s a real trooper – yesterday when Mr. G and I saw her right out of surgery she was very chipper and said “I’m a tough old broad!”. She’s too funny. We brought her a gi-normous Happy Mother’s Day balloon and cards from everyone. The recovery from such an operation will be a long one I’m sure but hopefully my Mom will manage it okay with help from the family. My stepfather Ron has been suffering from pneumonia so it’s been kind of tough on him too!

Yesterday we enjoyed a potluck Mother’s Day brunch/my sister’s birthday with family. It was great to be together and share food. My little grandson Sammy was the center of attention!

I’m still playing catchup since my Mom’s accident so have not done too much creatively except for attempt to sew a zipper onto a piece of painted canvas – without a zipper foot. I plan on making some handpainted pouches to sell on etsy so i guess i need to invest in a zipper foot for my over 30 year old sewing machine. I’m a bit dyslexic so have difficulty with the idea of how to sew a zipper on pretty much anything.

 I found these wonderful tutorials online that you might want to check out:

How to sew a zippered pouch

Skip to my Lou tutorial

Flat bottomed pouch

Zippered wristlet  

I just might have to get Mr. G to try it out first and show me – he’s much better at figuring things out like this than i am – being a Virgo and also having a background as a techie who loves a challenge and how to break things down into easy to understand steps.

Hopefully i’ll have my creative groove back on tomorrow…..until then……have a great day!

No Blog today

I won’t be blogging today as my Mom’s had a fall – fell over her little dog Sophie and has fractured her shoulder and dislocated it. She’s still in the hospital awaiting surgery.  Since she is elderly we naturally are worried and quite honestly when i’m worried about something i can’t focus on anything.  If you could send a few prayers my Mom’s way i would really appreciate it.

I’ll be back blogging on Monday.

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend.  Happy Mother’s Day to all of the Mom’s and Grandmothers out there.

Love, Violette xo

Unfurl your Creative Juju!

 I took this picture of a fern frond delicately unfurling. Can you see my bike in the background perched on the Studio outside wall? I loved the juxtaposition of the natural and mechanical. A fern frond is a perfect metaphor for the creative life – gently unfurling the minute you give it permission to grow! There are so many opportunities to grow creatively today. What are some things you can do to boost your creative juju? Here are a few ideas:

  • Read art books and art magazines (either buy them or check them out for free at the library)
  • try a new technique out once a week
  • take a class either LIVE or online
  • read interviews with your favourite artists – this will inspire you to emulate them and carve out your own creative path
  • open a book at random and point your finger at something on the page – create a piece of art around the phrase and incorporate it into the art
  • look at a problem upside down for a new perspective – seriously I do this. Or by the same token you can go out in nature and look at it between your legs
  • take a different route to work or to the grocery store – you might see something that inspires you and will inform your art
  • take something from nature – a leaf, twig, shell or rock and paint or print with it
  • hang out with a child and make art – follow their lead
  • go to ezine articles and check out their articles on creativity and art
  • go to creativity portal and do the same
  • join an art group or form your own. Plan on having creative gatherings where you teach each other your art specialty
  • attend an art retreat. If you can’t afford it you can create your own with your creative buddies
  • take one of your favourite artists such as Van Gogh or Modigliani and make a piece of art “In the style of…..”
  • go for a walk in a busy place and eaves drop on conversations. Take a snippet of a conversation that intrigues you and write a story or fashion a piece of art around it.If you do some of the above you will surely Unfurl your Creative Juju! Can you add any more ideas to my list?  I’d love to hear them!  Have fun with it.


My friend Margot Potter has a great blogpost today on Embracing Rejection. It’s a given if you are out there in the art world you WILL be rejected. What do you do when that happens? Check out the post. Once when I was rejected by an editor I politely asked her what was wrong with my project and why it was rejected. She kindly told me it had to do with my colour choice (which i’m guessing  some folks think is a bit garish). Anyways I went away, licked my wounds and created something different which was eventually rejected. Never give up – keep plugging away at it. As Yoda would say “There is no try. There is do or not do”. So just do it!

I hope you’ll have a magical weekend full of Creative juju! Woo hoo!
Love, Violette xo


This and That


This is my friend Angela’s art – she painted a picture of a woman with a cute headband.  On the headband it says “I heart violette”.  Too sweet eh?  Angela mailed this whimsical painting to me – it cost her a pretty penny.  Thank you Angela.  Your painting will be going up in my Studio!

I glittered the woodblock girls and will be posting them on my etsy site this morning after i do a mini photo shoot and create the write ups.  I seem to be having a bit of a problem with being regular about posting art on etsy.  My New Year’s resolution was to sell a certain amount of artful products per day on etsy by the end of June i think……anyways i only have a couple of months left and am no where near close to my projections.  I’m also having problems posting the appropriate shipping costs.  Shipping from Canada costs way more that to ship from the states.  For example I’ve been losing a ton of money because I haven’t been charging the appropriate amounts – to ship my notebooks i think i was charging 4 dollars to the states and it actually cost me 7 dollars plus an extra dollar for the hard mailer………so that’s 8 dollars.  Which means I’m out 4 dollars.  Good grief.  I’m better off selling prints which cost much less to mail.

I’d Rather be in the Studio

I’m reading a book right now called I’d Rather Be in the Studio: The Artist’s No-Excuse Guide to Self -Promotion by Alyson Stanfield. It’s great – I highly recommend it (I don’t get anything for saying that either!). This is a book I wish I had come across a number of years ago. You’ve most likely heard me whine that I would much rather be drawing and doodling than promoting myself, doing the social network thing, mailings etc. Well if Alyson knew me she’d probably give me a swift kick in the pants…..seriously – she does not endure whining and ultimately says “Ditch the excuses” and get with the program. “Your art studio is a place where magic happens – but not enough magic that you can afford to stay there all of the time.” She teaches you all kinds of practical things like how to create your own marketing materials, artist statement, how to introduce yourself as an artist, expand your mailing list and more. She also teaches you how to become a media magnet so that your buyers come to you. I just wanted to pass this little gem along to you if you are serious about making the most of your art business!

Here is a cool little video on how to build your business using social media.

Check out Linda’s Free paper doll template .  She was inspired by yesterday’s post on leveraging your art.  What a great idea Linda!

Art Journal: Leveraging a drawing

A while ago I created this face (which suspiciously looks like Madonna). I had sketched it out and liked it so much that I transferred it to some watercolor paper and then collaged it onto a background painted onto watercolor (I blogged about it about a month ago I think). As you can see I collaged on a rose and some magazine flowers. The vines were painted on the page. First I added a layer of gesso so that I could paint the green on top. The heart and tulip were collaged onto the page (I think I painted them with twinkling H2O’s). I decided to leverage the face which I quite liked so this is what I did:

  • I used a background I had made by scrapping paint with a credit card. I added some interested by stamping rings on with a lid and india ink. The lines were stamped with the side of the credit card. Next I used a leaf stamp to add a bit of texture
  • With some graphite paper I transferred the face onto my page and then inked it in with micron pens. Highlights to the hair were added with white paintpen and a black brush pen.
  • The face was partially painted in with a combination of acrylic paints. The whites of the eyes were painted in with a paint pen. A pink paintpen was used on the lips.
  • I added microfine glitter to the hair.
  • The words were written with a whiteout pen and a Sharpie poster pen. Re-Evaluate was outlined with a thin micron pen.


Can you see how different the face looks when you apply it to a pre-made background? The next time you make a face, tree, mug or any object that you are pleased with why not save a copy of it and reuse it? You can also leverage your piece even further by shrinking it down and making it into a magnet or a print or a greeting card. I’ve done that with journal pages that I quite liked and had a universal appeal.

The Class


There were only 3 women in my workshop on saturday. The women were wonderful, super creative and talented! The class was well advertised at the store, on my blog, newsletter, twitter, facebook etc. So I think I need to re-evaluate whether or not I want to do classes of this type. Looks like I have to revisit what I am doing. Many of you know i’m menopausal and often don’t sleep well – last nite I was listening (for 3 ½ hours) to an audiobook on using your strengths and focusing on that. I’m now distilling what my actual strengths are which I had not originally thought were strengths. It’s a good idea every now and then to re-evaluate what you are doing – what works, what doesn’t work, what you love, what you don’t love. You can also grow out of love with something too which i’ve found. I am no longer energized by going to parties or being in large groups of people – and that’s okay! How about you? Is it time you re-evaluated what is working in your life and what is not?

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