Posts from January 2014

First work of 2014

January 30, 2014


My first piece of the year is very Arabian. I am currently working on art to be shown in Saudi Arabia and am planning a series of Arabian Doors

I painted a piece of cotton a few weeks ago. This piece began looking like this.


After I completed the painting on this piece, you can still see some of the brown through the paint, which I was hoping would give it a painted wood look. It is quite interesting to take a look at this piece before it was quilted.


The quilting is my favorite part. It brings color and texture and life to the piece!

I had it mounted on stretcher bars and framed so the size is 9 1/2″ x 6 1/2″ x 3/4″.

I am hoping to make a few more of these Saudi doors. I’m planning the next ones to be in more traditional colors.

The art show is in Dhahran, Saudi Arabia March 6, 7 and 8. I better get to work!




January 22, 2014

Queen of the castle

In 2005, my husband and I traveled to Jordan, a land full of history and so many exciting sights. We were on our way back to Amman from the Dead Sea when we stopped at an ancient Crusaders Castle, Kerak Castle. It was amazing. I took a tour of the Castle with a very kind Arab man. As we worked our way through the Castle, the big finale was to have this picture taken, me sitting on the high wall of the Castle.

What you don’t see in this picture is my terror, my incredible fear. I sit down, I can hear the traffic moving below, I can hardly breathe, the blood is pounding in my ears, I’m feeling dizzy. I am terrified that I am going to fall from the wall into the traffic. Then, my body moves to paralysis. I have no clue how I am going to move away from this wall. You can see my hands almost attempting to hang on to the wall. This all happens in the time it take to snap a photo. The kind tour guide finishes taking the picture and puts his hand out to help me up. I am certain I could not have gotten up from that wall unassisted.

It was then that I realized I had a fear of heights, a fear of falling, particularly into traffic. It was one of the most fearful moments of my life.

The most common time I feel fear is around creating art. Of course, it is not as frightening as the fear of falling into traffic!

I spent much of last week sitting, paralyzed by the fear of starting, fear of making a mistake, the fear of failing. This talk carried on to snowball into questioning if I really wanted to be an artist, and, well, I’m sure any of you who have experienced “creative” fear know where this continued to lead. Finally, I knew I had to start. I knew that if I continued to sit, the paralysis would just simply become permanent.

And so, I began.

Paint mix

I am using Daler Rowney Arylic Artist Ink. I like using this paint because it offers a few options on fabric. If the fabric is wet, it will run and pool and give you interesting patterns. It does work well dry if you have specific areas to paint, however it does take a lot of ink to get a deep color.

Once I started, it felt better. Once I was in full paint mode, my mind started to explore other possibilities. And instead of saying, “I can’t”, I began to question “what if?”


I finally got the painting finished and it was forward on to the quilting, my favorite part! Because I like to stitch in specific areas, I start and stop in those spaces, and spend quite a bit of time burying the thread ends by hand, into the piece. It is labor intensive, but I am so much happier with the results!

The piece is almost finished and will go off to the framer today. I have to keep moving forward!

I would love to hear how you overcome your creative fears.


January 8, 2014

I spent sometime recently choosing a word for the year. I am new at this. 2013 was the first time I ever chose a word, “imagine”. Well, to be honest, it was a year that took me to unimaginable places, it was the most amazing year of my life! Here is hoping that in 2014, “forward” will work the same magic. I worked with a friend of mine who, when the going got tough, used to say to me, “keep moving forward”! I often find myself stuck in a rut, sitting, thinking, fretting, feeling the fear of creating when truly, if I just kept moving forward, the creativity would consume me! That is what this year is about for me. It is about continuing to make art, creating everyday, moving past the fear, onward to forward!

That said, here I am blogging, which is something I never envisioned for myself. Apparently forward is working.

I did some painting yesterday and was very happy with the results.


While the fabric was still wet, I folded it and left it to dry. I’m loving all this rich texture before I even begin with the piece. I have an idea where this piece is leading me!

I hope your New Year is going great!. I would love to hear about your choice of a word for 2014!