5

Techniques’: When is it your own?

I have my own style in many things but lately with my girls I have taken to following Tamara Laporte’s wondrous tutorials. I always try to make some part of each tutorial unique in some way. Yet I find myself leery of saying it is 100% my own yet.

For example, I recently completed one of Tam’s tutorial called the “Merry Muse” The photo below is Tamara’s work.

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(Click Here for more info on this tutorial)

To make it more my own I used a different color palette and I changed the items in her hands from a Celtic Harp to Moon and then made my dove different with no crown. See my take on this tutorial below.

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So yes it looks different than Tam’s yet similar still because the techniques used are pretty close to the same.

My next project I decided to still use the techniques I have learned from Tam but I didn’t follow her tutorials directly and even drew my very own girl without any visual aids from anyone else’s works. In other words, the girl is totally my creation.

However, once I completed her, in my mind she is still not really mine. She is not from any tutorial, she is not a copy, and yet she still doesn’t feel like all mine. Simply because the techniques I used were all learned from Tam.

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I would be very interested in what others may think. If you are learning techniques from other artist’s when does what you are working on become your own work? Does every technique used needs to be 100% your own idea? Does it become your own if you mix one learned artist’s technique with another’s? How do you get to that point where you feel your creations are all yours?

I personally have no answer, I am still on the journey to developing my own personal style, technique and cohesive works. However, I know one thing…

Learning various techniques from various artist’s is definitely a great way to keep me moving forward in this journey. So to all those wonderful artists’ that share their own techniques, trials and tricks with us I thank you with all my heart! Thank to each of you, I am confident that one day I will be able to do the same and will have my “own” unique style and techniques.

Hugs & Love from – Ranae’

4

Perfection is the enemy…

I have the most wonderful & inspiring boyfriend ever. Very shortly after we met he gave me a phrase that has helped me over and over again. It is a phrase that I have shared with many others also.

You see I have for so many years struggled with not feeling good enough. It could be the simplest of mishaps and my reaction would be one of extreme failure. My world would threaten to tumble down on me over something as simple as having forgotten to buy milk. Ok so I may be dramatizing a little bit, but not by much. The point is though that I often went to him feeling as if I had failed in some monumental way, when to him it was nothing more than a tiny bump in the road.

He sat me down and talked at length with me about this and then gave me this wonderful phrase.

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“Perfection is the enemy of the good.”

 

What this means is simple, if we are striving for perfection constantly, we tend to get so wrapped up in being perfect that we miss the thousands of things we did good. So by pushing for perfection, and then beating ourselves up when we cannot obtain it, we have missed out on seeing and embracing all the other things we did well. We become imbalanced in our perceptions as well as making ourselves feel like failures when in fact we are really good at so many things

I find this to be true in my art as well. When he and I first met I had just begun my journey back into the art world. Yet I was scared to try a lot of various techniques because I felt that the art I was already doing wasn’t perfect. I became a dabbler at my art and yes I enjoyed a lot of it but I was always just shy of actually embracing it, and I very rarely could say I liked a finished piece. There was always something I did wrong, or I was good enough at, or everyone else did so much better than I did.

I had even found myself doing very little of my own artwork and instead was doing mostly coloring work for other people. I loved doing it, since I am a huge lover of color and blending, but it never truly felt like mine because the original image wasn’t my own work.

So as I tell you how much my boyfriend’s continual support, encouragement and belief in me has impacted me as an artist let me show you some of my art from when I met him vs. my artwork now…

Here are a couple done shortly before we met…

I am not saying they are horrible, but I was too scared to try my hand at anything more detailed than those type of projects.

Here are a couple of works I just recently finished…

I am so much happier in myself and in my art since I am “finally” understanding the most beautiful gift I have ever received. The gift of his phrase, “Perfection is the enemy of the good.” A gift that continues to give to me over and over again in my life. I still struggle to remember this at times, but when I do remember it always gives me the boost I need to smile and remember all those many good things I do so well.

I hope my readers will embrace the phrase and take it to heart so that they may grow and start their well deserved journeys into the world of accepting all the “Good”!

Hugs & Love – Ranae’

11

Mad Hatter Day

Does your art sometimes turn into a series without you meaning for it to?  Do themes just happen or are you one who plans them out?

I started out working on a new project that revolves around Alice in Wonderland. Unfortunately, I am unable to proceed further than my preliminary sketch due to having to work out some kinks with the background material I want for her. So in the mean time I began to look for something else to do.

I don’t usually have a list of what I want to do next and in this case my mind was blank. I only knew I wanted to paint.

I have a great friend, Savannah, who has her grandma’s tea recipe tacked up on my fridge and as I went to get something to drink I looked at it and there began my inspiration. She loves tea so I decided to paint her a whimsical teapot. It was a lot of fun to paint and I definitely want to do more of these.

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When I was finished with it, once again I turned to my friends. While chatting with them I just asked them to name me a few of their favorite things. One of my friends, Nicole, said bunnies. And so this lil bunny was born. She was an ornery bunny and as usual I almost gave up on her as she went through her ugly stage, but I pressed through and I rather like her now. Not too bad for my first ever acrylic animal.

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Still running into trouble with my background and having to wait now for delivery of the material I designed, I once again was looking for something to paint.

My friend Michelle and I have been talking about holding some of our own paint classes at some point and were chatting about what things we could paint in those classes. Being a lover of hat’s I told her I wanted to try a whimsical top hat.  And so this hat was created.

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Now look back at the various items I wound up painting over the past couple of weeks… do you see the theme?

It was completely unintentional but I wound up painting items that can be found relating to the one thing I “truly” wanted to be working on, which was my Alice in Wonderland!

Funny how things interweave isn’t it? “Curiouser and Curiouser!”

How about you? Do you find yourself working in themes without intent to do so? Perhaps it’s just a certain color palette you keep using unintentionally. It may even be thicker than normal line strokes or an embellishment you suddenly realize you put into many of your art works.

I would very much love to hear from each of you regarding your experience with such.

Hugs & Love Ranae’

4

Artist Spotlight – Tamara Laporte

We all have various Artist’s we follow and learn from. Today I decided I am going to dedicate time on my own blog to highlight some of those who have greatly inspired me as well as taught me some wonderful lessons.

Today I am highlighting one of those artist’s I very much respect and admire Tamara Laporte. These Pencil Sketches I did are a result of Tam’s course “Radiant Faces” Which is only one of the many wonderful courses she offers.

When I first ventured back into working on, what I love to create the most, my girls I discovered Tamara Laporte. Her whimsical girls really touched me and I wanted to learn how she does the magic she does.

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At the time she was advertising for Life Book 2014, so of course I purchased the class. Life being what it was I had to put my art on the back burner and wasn’t able to return to her courses until 2015. Once I did though I was hooked.

This is an art piece I did guided by Tam’s Radiant Faces Course also, and is one that I receive the most compliments on.

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Calm Fires

She still has her personal courses from the previous year’s Lifebook’s available and the full Lifebook 2016. Fantastic course to challenge and help you develop from some super talented artist’s.

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It is amazing to me how quickly my own artistic style has evolved since I first began taking her course. Tam is not only a great teacher of her art style but she also cares very deeply about people. She incorporates life lessons into her classes as well as guiding us through the art processes.  Her view of the world and people is truly inspiring and her calm demeanor about all things makes learning from her such a truly wonderful journey in so many different ways.

Another thing that inspires and fills me joy while I learn from her is that she is one of those wonderful people that understands how important it is to care for self. Not just in health ways but in matters of her own day to day life, her passions, her spiritual side and emotional sides. Being an introspective person myself I take great comfort in listening to Tam and knowing there are other who realize the importance of looking deeper into your own self.

She is constantly running special deals on her classes and they are offered in a wide range of prices, so if you’re not ready for one of her larger packages you can choose one of her Self Study Mini Classes. They are all Fantastic courses and I personally have taken over 10 of them. I myself am very excited for her newest course to start up. It’s called “Ever After” and is about fairy-tales and how to develop your own style.

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For her special deals check out her etsy shop.

https://www.etsy.com/uk/shop/willowing?section_id=8069840

To enjoy reading and learning more about Tam check out her website.

http://www.willowing.org/

Let her know Ranae’ sent you. *giggles*

Hugs & Love – Ranae’

This entry was approved by Tamara herself and her photo’s were used with Tamara’s express permission and only for the purpose of this particular write up. They are subject to copyright laws and protected by law.

13

The Healing Muse & Melancholy

How often does your muse turn to you during those melancholy stages? Do you allow it to come forth and inspire you artistically?

I don’t typically create my art to show my places of melancholy, instead my muse brings forth ideas that give me joy, with bright colors and of whimsicalities or fun oddities.

However, this was a tough week…

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I woke up Saturday and all I could think about was Mom’s day. That is a hard holiday for me, for many reasons, some of them way too personal and still too hard for me to speak openly of. But the part my muse grabbed a hold of was how deeply I miss my Mom.

Mom was a wonderful, Wife, Mom, Business woman, Homemaker and friend. It still amazes me to this day how many different people my Mom’s kindness touched.
She was always thinking of other people and could be found lending an ear of comfort, reaching out to those less fortunate than herself and encouraging others. She used to pack a little Ziploc bag with things like aspirin, Tylenol, allergy pills, tums etc. and carry it in her purse just in case one of her many friends ever needed a little emergency med care.

For as far back as I can remember my Mom and I would always use the well-known phrase, “I love you to the moon and back.” But we would put our own spin on it. For example, she would write or say, “I love you to the moon and back a million times!” I would reply, “I love you to the moon and back a billion katrillioin zillion times.” We’d just make up names for our own big numbers. That always meant so much to me and now I even do the same phrase with my youngest daughter, Della.

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As I sat there pondering how much I missed my Mom that phrase came to my muse and I added the phrase in my sketch, to say, “miss you to the moon and back.”
As I worked on this sketch my heart filled with warm memories of Mom and my smile grew. Before I knew it had happened I found my smile and although the heaviness of her being gone was still there it was surrounded by the comfort of knowing she is always with me and how easy it is to pull up those wonderful memories at any time. My muse had helped me put the smile back on my face and the sketch was like a calming medicine for me. Missing her yet so happy to of been her daughter and to have so many wonderful memories of her.
My Mom passed in 12-12-2011, and I miss her so much!

So in dedication to the most wonderful woman I ever met and was so very blessed to of been raised by. This sketch is for you Mom.

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In Memory of Jane Erion the most wonderful lady you could ever of met!
I love you to the moon and back an infinity of times and miss you just as much!

-Ranae’

8

A Dibble Dabble Day

So today is a starting out to be a dibble dabble day. One of those days where it’s just hard to settle your mind down long enough to really dig into any one project.

Dibble…

I started out scribbling chalk over the back of a preliminary sketch I did for a larger project I want to do.

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Dabble…

Then I put that aside and refreshed my coffee, walked away, let my pups outside, said morning to a few friends on FB. Grabbed a piece of copy paper and began sketching a face.

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Dibble…

Was not liking that so I returned to my chalked paper and taped it in place, tested the transfer to ensure the yellow chalk I used would work. Walked to my computer then right back to the taped sketch and began the actual transferring process, finished that, took the transfer sketch off then back to sketch on paper again. Still not liking the sketch, I sighed and walked away from it. Took a bubble bath to hopefully relax my scattered thoughts.

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Dabble…

Then Refreshed my coffee again and back to my computer, opened up MS Word and here I now sit typing this blog entry.

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Dibble Dabble…

I have come to the conclusion that part of this dibble dabble is the result of me starting a project I have never tried before. It’s not an unfamiliar medium, it’s simply on a larger scale than I have done before. So a bit of my dibbles are unsurety of how to move forward with it. Of course there is always other life circumstances that enter into the mix which add to this dibble dabble mindset, on top of our projects, that tend to add to the scattered thought processes.

This might be a good day for an abstract of some sort… *giggle* Dibble… Dibble… Dabble… Dabble..

Do you have days like this? If so what helps you to refocus and settle your mindset? Would love to hear your thoughts on Dibble Dabble days.

Hugs & Love – Ranae’

6

Strange Inspiration Processes

Today I find myself wondering about those strange inspiration processes I go through to get to where I want my piece to be. A sweet friend of mine, Michelle, and I were talking this morning about where I get my inspiration from. That is a very hard question for me to answer but I answered the best I could. “I get my inspiration from life.” To which she so appropriately replied, “Playing inspires you. – Nature.”

I agreed she is correct. Yes I am very inspired by nature, I am inspired by oddities, by children, by animals, by other artists, by simplicity, by colors.. and the list goes on and on. However in reality there is no “One” certain thing that inspires me and I find that often times my inspiration simply comes from “playing”. Letting my inner child come out and just be silly and have fun.

So with that I thought I would share with you my process thus far today.

I woke up today and decided I wanted to design another Sugar Skull Girl. So I started off with just the basic face. Nothing Fancy just a simple sketch that I could build from.

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So with my basic sketch created I then scan it to my computer, this way I can make multiple copies and try various things until I am happy with my result. It helps to take some of the fear away, because I know I will still have my original also.

Then I play… and play… 

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and play some more! YAHHH

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I tend to draw this and that, then take a new sheet and do it again. Often I will play with adding to this base face for hours, not even realizing how much time has passed. Just letting myself have fun and not really thinking too much about it all.

Perhaps I will grab some old fashioned crayola’s and color this section, or maybe I will use simple bic pens. Stop for a coffee and a bit of dancing to the music or giggling at my pups then back to the art play.

I may cut one section out and lay it on top of another, to see how I like it or perhaps I will scribble some hair to get an idea of what she could look like. Or maybe I will cut out some hair shapes from card stock or use old frames I have and lay them on the face in various positions.

Many of the trial runs will be very scribbled and very few clean lines. ( I love my erasers!) Now keep in mind none of these are meant to be a part of my finished project, they are simply my way of letting my creative process have some fun until I find what I really like. Before you know it my typically organized studio desk will begin to look something like this…

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But messy or not I know this much. At the end of the day even if I do not like the results I came up with, I had a great day and a lot of fun. Not only that but as I look back on things the majority of “techniques” I now love to use came about from one or another of my “Play Session”.

So please don’t get so caught up in your end result’s that you forget to have fun. Let your inner child come out to play, you just may be very surprised at how very creative he/she is. Just  letting your mind roam until you feel that inspirational ah hah!!!

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Hugs & Love – Ranae’