Thursday, July 9, 2009

Truly Phenomenal Artists Celebrate the Beauty of Freedom

ANNOUNCEMENT: If you did not have a chance to check out the AMAZING interview yesterday with Kelly, creator of Backward Glances, please refer to the previous post. You'll love it!

This week inspired me more than I ever dreamed. These talented, professional, funny, down-to-Earth, amazing artists rose to the challenge of this theme and created some of the most freeing work I've ever seen. They did not let personal challenges, dislike of colors, frustration or mistakes stand in their way. They simply plowed through armed with raw emotion and determination and created...magic.

I tip my hat to you artists. You are more inspiring than you will ever know.

I needed this TST more than I realized...thank you for being a bright light in my life.

Now, I invite you to leave everything behind and bask in the result of true creative freedom...

Susan, creator of Yaffa Dreams, created this stunning SAILING ON THE OCEAN OF FREEDOM SUNCATCHER.

"None who have always been free can understand the terrible fascinating power of the hope of freedom to those who are not free."
~~~ Pearl S. Buck

"First, let me say, that the pictures do not do this justice," said Susan. "I live in the Sunshine State, but when I need to take pictures, the sun is hiding behind clouds.

Many have braved the ocean, some on rafts and whatnot, to venture to the United States of America in hopes of living free.

This suncatcher was designed with this notion. The blue glass beads represent the ocean. The red, white and blue heart glass beads represent my love of this country. I am a first generation American, and am so grateful to have been born in the United States. The suncatcher also has other red, white and blue glass beads and two AB crystal star beads. When the light hits the beads, they sparkle."
AND my blog:

Ceridwen, creator of Wanderlust Bling, created this gorgeous piece.

"It took me a long time to get back on the creative wagon after my three week vacation to Alaska," said Ceridwen. "It wasn't so much a lack of creativity as an overload of inspiration. When I read the freedom theme, it seemed to shake something loose. I thought of the freedom we had in the Arctic Circle in June - the freedom to do anything we wanted at any time of day or night, since the sun never set. This necklace is a representation of the never ending day - the two strands of sky blue and cloud white are broken only by the bright magenta flash of the sun briefly painting the sky sunset colors before reappearing and making day again."

Amanda, creator of Persistent Green, created this incredible Untitled watercolor.

"Another work in progress this week! I have to be honest--I'm usually not a fan of the red, white, and blue color combination. I wasn't really looking forward to my piece for this week's theme. Well, with watercolor, of course, nothing is as it seems. The initial application of these colors turned into a spectacular array of reds, pinks, blues, and purples as the process continued and the paint mingled. What a great reminder to drop our expectations at the door and just TRY it!"

So this one was another surprise. After posting the theme I was stumped. I had no ideas. My daughter and I watched Tinkerbell and had a conversation about how "free" fairies are when they fly. They can sprout wings and fly anywhere. That got me thinking about the freedom we all have to spread our wings and soar...only many don't do that. Once again in the craft store (craft stores and book stores are my slices of heaven) I found this fabric and it fit. The fairy outfits are red, white and blue. The photo of the journal is not done in fact I was just about to adhere the fabric but I ran out of time last night. It will be filled with prompts to help you fulfill your dreams and it's dedicated to my daughter...a special little soul that I want to see fly as high as she can in life.

The wonderfully talented artist Maureen created this sensational piece.

"For this week, as soon as I read Natasha's urging to 'embrace individual freedom,' I knew this piece had to have something to do with ME," said Mayreen. "But red, white and blue just don't inspire me. But sweet Amanda/Persistent Green encouraged me.

So I found a blue and deep pink I could live with--and just swirled out The Story of My LIfe. I rose and fell and ultimately rose again. (Teehee, I think the color of the squiggle that represents me is actually 'rose.') So there you have it: my life in living color. Me, free finally to be me."

For this week, as soon as I read Natasha's urging to 'embrace individual freedom,' I knew this piece had to have something to do with ME. But red, white and blue just don't inspire me. But sweet Amanda/Persistent Green encouraged me.

So I found a blue and deep pink I could live with--and just swirled out The Story of My LIfe. I rose and fell and ultimately rose again. (Teehee, I think the color of the squiggle that represents me is actually 'rose.') So there you have it: my life in living color. Me, free finally to be me."

Teri, creator od Giraffelabel, created this hilariously brilliant piece.

"So, I tried to do something for this week," said Teri. "And, then I tried some more, and then some more. Basically what I ended up with was not good at all! (I'm not just saying was bad!) But, I kept trying to fix it, and today I realized there was nothing I could do to save it. But, I still had fun working on it, learned some things, and in the end was able to laugh at myself. (as my husband and kids laughed with me!) We tried to find other uses for it, and what was supposed to be a womens top was turned into a hat for my son, a scarf, a belt for my daughter, etc...and this was one of the funniest...

Just thought I would share my "process"...and give you a giggle! hee hee!"

Bird, creator of Crow Tarot, Kitty Hawke, Cat Bird Crystals, and One Earth, One Tribe, created these magnificent pieces.

"This week's pieces were about granting myself the freedom to just be - creative, at peace, as an artist," said Bird.

"Nature's Fireworks & Nature's Fireworks Too came about after my housie & I had a bit of a to-do that left me in no mood to be in company other than my canine's. So I leashed Bailey, put the Butt Quilt in the rolley bag and went to our local park. After some sitting & feeling sorry for myself, then some more sitting while I regained perspective & peace, I noticed this beautiful sunset, and realized why I'd come. :-) I actually took probably a couple of hundred pictures, but these are the ones I felt most drawn to share at this moment. :-) Enjoy! :-)

Filters Freedom Too is from another of those pictures, run through the kaleidoscope filter of PaintShopPro. A five-pointed star seemed very appropriate, considering the hollyday. :-D

Today (Wednesday) I let myself indulge in the creative itch that's been plaguing me for a while now. I'm having this immense desire to start new projects, but I'm forcing myself to finish old ones first. :-) However, today I let myself go a bit. Some 'sea glass' from a couple of giant bags, a new plait & sennit from my nautical knots book, and a complete lack of caring for practicality led to these two pieces - Patriotic Jewel & the Torc of Freedom.

I notice that stacking pieces is a whole lot easier when they are man-made! :-D Patriotic Jewel was SO much easier than the combo pieces I did for 'Bones of the Earth'.

The Torc of Freedom is actually a torc. It goes around the neck, then the short side rests against the collarbones, while the rest comes down to accent elsewhere. A definite departure for me - I design big & bold, but not usually this expansively! :-D

Nature's Fireworks

Nature's Fireworks Too

Filters Freedom Too

Patriotic Jewel

Torc of Freedom

I ask you, do you not feel free to let yourself be you? To create in any form?

Please feel free to share comments and love here and then visit the shops and blogs of these fabulous artists and share some more!!


Phoenyx Ravenswing said...


Welcome back, giraffelabel! :-) Good to see you here again in a crafter's mode! :-)

Good on you for not giving up, even when you chose to give up! :-) Attitude is not only altitude, it's everything! :-)

And yes, you are correct - this particular usage is indeed hysterically funny! :-) Blessings to the patient pooch who participated in the process! :-D

Maureen, I love both the pic & the pun! :-D So very kyool, and so very Phoenix of you - to rise again & again, reborn, but unscathed is the very mark of the Phoenix. :-) Yay, you! :-)

Your work & your stories are both so lovely & inspiring. Thank you for sharing once again. :-)

Natasha, I love your theme, and can't wait to see the finished journal! :-) Yay you for allowing inspiration to evolve naturally out of life. :-)

Amanda, what a wonderful reminder! :-) I also love how the combinations become unique and full of richness of form & texture. :-)

Looking forward to seeing it as it progresses! :-)

Ceridwen, I love the structure of your piece. Using the ends also in the middle of the piece as well as in the traditional place at the back leads to very kyool texture and a wonderful reminder that circles end where they begin and begin where they end, and sometimes both of these things happen where we don't expect them to. :-)

Susan, wonderful symbolism in a lovely design! :-) Beautiful use of color & texture in a small space! :-)

Wonderful work, all! :-) As ever, thnx for sharing! :-)

Bright Blessings & Good Fortune! :-)

Amanda Fall - PersistentGreen said...

Still giggling over the expression on giraffelabel's dog... "WHAT are you DOING to me??" Love it! I think keeping that spirit of lightheartedness is so important, especially when we could easily turn to being discouraged and upset.

Great work, everybody!

FunkyMonkey Girls said...

Giggling at the expression of giraffelabel's doggie:) I did make a piece, I did! I couldn't find my camera, then I found it and the electricity went out and then I couldn't find the thingee I need to put the picture on here :(

Bird your torc is awesome!

Funky Monkey Girl,

Ceridwen said...

Girafeelabel's dog is thinking "I don't... understand... why?!?!?!?" LOL - thanks for sharing with us! Great work, everyone - it's great to be back!

giraffelabel said...

thanks everyone! i just had to share the silliness that came out of my "mess-up". my kids got a huge kick out of it. and, yes, the dog has been through a lot of "dress up" with the kids, and so she is very patient!

i love the submissions this week. although i loved the theme this week, i agree that red, whit, and blue are hard colors to work with. everyone did a great job!

my daughter, who is standing here with me, loves ceridwen's necklace! and the vision of the endless it!

yeah! i am so happy to be back!

Anonymous said...

Great work everyone and haha giraffelabel!

Felicia Kramer said...

So sorry I couldn't participate this week but life interfered (brother's heart surgery, nephew's grad party decorations). I'm totally beat so this will be short. Great work again this week; I'll just give a shout-out to Susan's Suncatcher, Teri's dressed up dog, and Bird's Torc of Freedom. Hope to be back next week.

Mackin-Art said...

Thanks for all the creativity this week, I really needed the inspiration - I came so close to finishing my piece, but it just didn't happen. Hopefully I'll make it next week.

Natasha said...

Hi everyone...I'm so sorry I haven't been little one is sick - either bad allergies or cold ...been a little rough today will be back to comment tomorrow but I LOVED every piece and Teri you made me howl...literally!!!! I think your dog should be the TST mascot!!

Great work everyone!!!

meherio68 said...

Natasha, I hope your little gets better soon.

I think this poor dog has indeed well deserved of the nation of crafters...

Everyone, your freedom is inspiring. I'm sorry I couldn't come up with my own piece in time but I enjoyed your fireworks immensely. Thank you for sharing!