Thursday, July 25, 2013

where does the time go?

This is my cutie palm tree - that my awesome husband Dan created for me in the special latte's he makes me!  Although - he bought me a Keurig a few months ago - and it has kinda "replaced" him making my morning coffee with the espresso maker.

Anyway, we just got back from San Diego, and I'm trying to get back into work... I don't know why but it's so tough for me every time we come back toward the's only 2 hours difference in time zones but it really knocks me out -- maybe it's the big traveling day that knocks me off balance -- but I just seem to need to take naps for a few days!  haha  Nothing wrong with a good nap though right??

Click picture to check it out on Amazon

I got my new Kundalini Yoga Ultimate Stretch DVD yesterday - so I started my day with that today!  WOW it really does stretch you!!  haha  Thanks Sherry for recommending it!  I'm gonna try to get back in my daily exercise routine and eat less carbs!  Hopefully I can do it all at the same time!

Does it ever seem like that to you??  That you can only concentrate on one big life goal at a time??  The hours in the day just pass like the speed of light -- and it never seems like I can get it ALL done!!  I work SO much -- and there always is so much MORE to do!  And then when I really try to concentrate on exercising and eating better... it takes up a bunch of time... and even less gets done business-wise.  Not to mention housework, yardwork, grocery shopping, errands, etc.

Sometimes I wonder -- how the heck did I do all that I did in my 20's??  I was married - had 2 kids - owned an art supply store (worked 80+ hours a week), taught painting classes, painted til the wee hours of the morning to do art/craft shows, ran the house, did the errands, took the kids to all their sports and classes, did conventions...holy cow, I'm getting tired just thinking about it all!  haha

Now, my kids are's just me & Dan...and the cat... I run 3 sections of my business (kinda like running 3 businesses), and have the same household stuff... and we try to get out to enjoy kayaking, biking, walking, etc. when we can --   but my daily "to do" list seems to have a million things still on it at the end of the day!

Hmmmm.... I don't know!  Maybe somebody's sneaking in and setting my clocks ahead all the time?  Or adding more things to my list??  haha.  I really need to get a better handle on it somehow.  I LOVE everything I do -- and I want to be fit and healthy --  I guess I just want it all!  haha   I LOVE being in my 40's -- I feel so in control of my life and things are GREAT -- but I really don't like my energy slowing down -- maybe I need to take my vitamins more regularly??   I guess part of  the answer is to "be more present" in the everyday minutes --  breathe into each and every one --  stop trying to multi-task on everything and just PAY ATTENTION to one thing at a time! 

Here's to all of us getting a few more minutes in the day, to just chill!!  :)


Wednesday, July 17, 2013

garbage painting ~ step by step

I've been doing a lot of mixed media lately ~ and one type of painting I LOVE to do is a style I call Garbage Painting.  Take your garbage can out from under your desk... I bet you have tons of stuff in there that you can use to create fun texture, image, and background!  

Sale flyers, junk mail, printer paper, envelopes, lined paper you wrote on, old lists, ledger paper, postage stamps, barcodes, tissue paper, greeting name can use it!

Rip up a BUNCH (you'll need a lot) of random sized pieces.  I collect bits and pieces of scrapbook papers, wrapping papers, cards, etc., in a drawer one of my plastic organizers - then whenever I need a "fill in" or extras - I have them handy!  No waste!  :)

Next - start glueing the pieces down randomly all over your canvas!  I use DecoArt's Decou-Page in Matte, or you could use Mod Podge Matte Medium, or Regular White Glue (watered down a little for easier application).  Spread some matte medium onto your canvas, place the piece of paper, then spread some more glue on top of the paper.  Matte Medium leaves an awesome, smooth texture for you to paint on when you're finished ~ so I would suggest that over the white glue ~ but you can try different options.

Continue slathering on medium, paper, and more medium ~ until the entire canvas is covered.  Let dry!  A couple tips -- if you're using 3/4" deep canvas, it can tend to warp a little if you add too much paper and glue -- especially if you are wrapping paper around to the sides -- so if that's a concern for you, use a thicker canvas like 1 1/2" gallery canvas.  Second, some of your paper images, words, etc will show through the paint - so make sure they are items that you're o.k. with people seeing.  haha

When the entire canvas is dry -- start adding paint to the surface!!  Just think "background" at this point -- colors you love together!  I do a wash of one color first - to get a layer down.  Then start slapping different colors on here and there -- as your intuition likes -- don't think to much!  Use different brushes - pick up a color and pounce in a few areas... water-down some paint and let it run down from the top...etc.

Stop from time to time and let your paints dry -- or use a blow dryer or heat gun to speed up the process for you!  If you don't stop and let it dry - your paints will become "muddy" with each new color put on top of each other - and you want them to stay nice and saturated - so you can see the different colors and texture.  It's GREAT to have some areas that blend together and form new colors -- but when your canvas gets too wet -- you lose the definition.

garbage painting, mixed media, Sue Allemand, step by step tutorial

garbage painting, mixed media, Sue Allemand, step by step tutorial

Use an old credit card or a piece of cardboard, dipped in paint, to make "swipes" across the painting in different areas.  The texture of the papers underneath will create cool, distressed-looking sections!  

garbage painting, mixed media, Sue Allemand, step by step tutorial

When you're happy with the background - and it's totally dry - start by drawing/sketching your design onto the canvas with a pencil!  You can use traditional methods of transferring designs, if you wish, by drawing your design onto tracing paper first ~ then using transfer paper and a stylus to transfer the design onto your background.

mixed media painting, Sue Allemand, copyright 2013, art print
"Patience" Vase Print by Sue Allemand ~ available HERE

Continue painting, shading, adding textures with scruffy brushes, bubble wrap, stamps!   Just have fun!  And every time you look at your painting ~ you will remember and see all the little bits of garbage that make-up the background and awesome texture of your fabulous painting ~ and that you saved from the landfill in the process!  :)


Thursday, July 11, 2013

skeptics, naysayers, negatives - meh!

Be positive, inspiration

Loved this post by Seth Godin today!  He's always got some great snippets of wisdom for us - and they always seem to come at the time that I (or someone close to me) need to hear them!

It's about choosing your own path (in business or in your everyday life) - regardless of what your skeptics are tellling you.  Those people who say, "She can't do that!", or "You're dreaming", or "It'll never happen!", or "That's impossible".  Those people, that you're all excited to tell your ideas and plans to - but are met with negativity and naysaying that make you believe you CAN'T do something!

DON'T LISTEN TO THEM!!  Those are the same people that are content to live in their comfortable, hamster-wheel life - never venturing out and doing something risky or bold or FUN!  They are not the people who foster change in the world, invent new processes or cures, or stick up for their fellow man.  Is that who you want to be?  Is that how you want to live this one - all to short - life that we have??  Just going along, to get along?  Doing what others want and expect from you??  Or do you want to LIVE, push the envelope, be daring, squeeze EVERY bit out of this life that you have??

I choose LIFE on MY terms!!  And that may make some people mad, or confused, or jealous, OR just maybe - they'll see their own lives in a different way (that's what I hope!).... see, through me, that they can say NO when they don't want to do something or go somewhere or talk to someone...the world won't fall apart!  Say NO when things are "expected" of them - but they want to go another direction...the world won't fall apart!  Say YES to yourself - your happiness - your dreams - your own peaceful life without drama or guilt over insignificant things...the world will open up to you!  Stop the drama and negative madness - it serves no purpose but to create more drama and negativity.  Disengage!  Honestly, just sit back and watch ~ and you'll see ~ once you step out and stop engaging in the drama-filled conversation ~ how much more peaceful and happy you will be!  I've done it!  Once I stopped arguing, once I stopped having the need to be right (because you know, it doesn't really matter right?), once I stopped listening to and engaging in the gossip and complaining -- life was happy, and peaceful and positive!

YOU are the most important person in your life.  Take care of YOU!  Nurture YOU!  Breathe deeply  - smell the roses - do what you LOVE - find your OWN path - and be with people who support YOU and LOVE YOU for who you are...not who they think you SHOULD be or WANT you to be.  And do the same for those you choose to have in your life!  Be patient, be loving and understanding ~ for they too have DREAMS!  Big dreams!  Let them have them!  <3

" It's not about the skeptics. It's about the people who care about, support and enable." ~ Seth Godin


Monday, July 8, 2013

let there be light

art studio, Sue Allemand

This is what I did the other day -- added fun round lights to the ceiling in my studio!  I need to buy a couple more strings - to finish the whole room - but I LOVE how it gives a fun, carnival-type look to my studio!

art studio, Sue Allemand

Our house is very dark - especially on cloudy and rainy days - and I'm ALWAYS needing more light!   We have really wide overhangs on the house and even on a sunny day - it's not THAT bright!  I've contemplated getting ceiling lights put in - or putting a skylight in my studio - but like that's ever gonna happen!  haha    I would actually have to clean everything out of my studio - yeah right - and plus, by the time we got around to having it done - it'd be time to move back to California for good!  So the new owners would be the recipient of the new lights/skylight...and I've already told myself I'm just going to finish projects that I've started around here over the years -- NOT start any new ones!!

art studio, Sue Allemand

Sooooo.... these will do for now!  Only $12.99 a string at Target!  Love those round bulbs!  They didn't have them at our Target until recently -- I had started adding round xmas bulbs onto each light on a mini Christmas lights string (whoa that was a job!  I had it half done - a 100 string - and then Target got these in!    Somebody at the Goodwill is gonna look at that half done string and think - what was somebody thinkin'??  Haha - yep - I'm crazy!  But hey - it WAS creative!  :)

I'm off to San Diego for 2 weeks!  Leaving tomorrow morning.  Mmmmmm - can't wait to relax at the beach... Harbor Island on the grass (which I LOVE!!  That's my favorite hangout!  So peaceful and beautiful - sketching, meditating, or reading a book by the Bay with an awesome view of my favorite city and Coronado Island!)...cuz I probably won't be able to get anywhere NEAR the beach - in JULY - with all the tourists...unless I wanna park a few miles away or get there BEFORE the crack of dawn!  haha    And I'm gonna be LIVING in my maxi dresses , sunscreen, floppy hat & flip flops!  Yay!

Talk to you soon, from the other side of the country...



Monday, July 1, 2013

love is everything!

Mixed Media Art Print, original art, copyright Sue Allemand, inspirational gifts

New Print - "Love is Everything" - 10" x 8" - Original Mixed Media Artwork by Sue Allemand.  Now available in my Etsy Shop.  Purchase the print matted to 11 x 14 and ready to frame -- or unmatted!
FREE SHIPPING in the U.S. Contiguous 48!