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.

PerfectionPost_Ranae

“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.

Teapot_Ranae

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.

Bunny_Ranae

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.

TopHat_Ranae

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’

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…

4_Mom_sm_02

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.

4_Mom_sm_04

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.

4_Mom_moon-2

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.

Dibble-1-2

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.

Dibble-3

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.

Dibble-1

Dabble…

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

Dibble-4

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’

10

Projects Galore

Does it help you to have more than one thing to work on, or does it hinder you from completing projects? How many is too many? How many projects do you have going at the same time? I currently have over 12 things started… Over achiever? Nah, probably just my ADD kicking in…

Projects_Galore-1

I always have many various things I am working on. I find it helps me a lot to do this. This way when I hit those pesky roadblock monsters threatening to push me into the Land of No Return or drive me to Depressionville, I have something else to move on to.

Projects_Galore-1-3

Of course too many projects can be a block also for some people. My artist friend Michelle shared with me that sometimes, for her, too many projects can also overwhelm her. Kind of putting her in a place where she doesn’t know which one to work on. This is true for me at times also, usually when I have so much going on in my personal life on top of it all.

When I first re-entered my artistic life though, I pushed myself to only do one project at time. This was due to me recognizing that I had a very bad habit of not finishing things. I would get to, what many call, the “ugly” stage of something and then quit. So to avoid this I put myself on a restriction and no matter how great of an idea I had for a New project I would not start it until I finished what I had already started. I would write my idea down instead. Kind of my own training/reconditioning process.

Now however, I have no problem pushing past my ugly stages and have completed many projects consistently. Therefore, I no longer feel the need to keep myself to just the one at a time rule.

Projects_Galore-2

Another reason I often have so many things going at one time is that I just tend to go through the, “I am bored stages.” Do you get that way at times? That feeling where you find yourself constantly sighing? Struggling to move forward or even procrastinating with doing your next step?

If I try to push through the bored stage, I tend to find myself not being as attentive to what I am doing and before I know it have forced myself into another ugly stage, which could have been avoided if I had just let it be.

Projects_Galore-1-4

I need my art to be free, I need it to be fun as I am working on it. If it is not fun, then for me it is time to put it away and work on something else. Do I need to have the 12 things going at once? No, not really. But I do need to have at least a couple, and when I find my creative mind just is not there, I break out the color books!!!

Projects_Galore-1-2

But my color book craze I shall leave for another post.

I’d love to hear your feedback on Projects Galore and how many is too many for you.

Hugs & Love – Ranae’

14

Anxiety & the Ugly Stage

I cannot tell you how many times I have about given up on my art pieces. As a matter of fact, I can pretty much promise you that 90% of my finished pieces almost wound up incinerated at some point. However, I was able to turn them into works I am very pleased with, and often times even find myself saying, “Wow, this is my favorite piece!”
Trust me when I tell you every artist goes through this, no matter how long they have been at their craft. That is what I am experiencing today on this piece. I am not at all happy with her hair. It is nowhere close to what I want or envisioned. I tried to fix it and it looks even worse to me now. We all go through certain stages in the creative process. I will share with you those stages as I see them.

  • Inspiration – You have the idea in your mind and are giddy to get started, it’s the perfect picture in your mind and the project speaks to your heart.
  • Excitement – You begin organizing your process, maybe gathering up all the tools you will be needing, setting it to paper in a rough sketch or outlining the idea.
  • Nerves – Then you sit and stare at your paper or canvas for what seems like an eternity. Doubts and Fears try to creep in, but you persevere and begin. Your initial sketch turns out pretty well and again you feel that tinge of excitement. “I can do this!”

Ranae_Sugar_Skull

  • Anxiety and the ugly stage – You have now begun the next steps, adding color, depth, embellishing etc. and it hits you. Nothing seems to look right anymore. You find yourself ready to give up and toss it into the bin. It seems like the more you try to fix it the uglier it becomes and you are moving back and forth between feelings of frustration, anger and defeat.

Ranae_Sugar_Skull-2

 

DO NOT THROW IT AWAY!
DO NOT SCRIBBLE ALL OVER IT!
DO NOT TEAR IT INTO CONFETTI!
WALK AWAY!
No I mean like walk away right NOW!

Put the piece to the side, somewhere you can still see it but it is not right in your face. Gather up your tools and put them together in a drawer or something. Someplace it is not going to be easy to quickly pick them up and add even more.

Good!! Now relax and start on something else, or go read, for a walk, whatever other project’s you enjoy. Because the next stage in the process is going to be…

  • Revelation – At some point you will return to the piece, look at it and suddenly see it in a brand new light. The idea’s will start popping in your mind again and that stumbling block you tripped over is going to look like a tiny little pebble. Now return to it!
  • Skill – This is when your true skill and creativity will shine through. You will turn what you thought of as mistakes into creative opportunities and you will find that renewed sense of pride and more importantly “FUN”!

I am at the put it away stage, where I will remain until my revelation comes!

Ranae_Sugar_Skull-3

So don’t feel like a failure, don’t give up and don’t think you are not an artist just because you’re stuck at the ugly stage. If anything the fact that you are there proves you are an artist, if you weren’t you would not have even gotten that far!

Stay tuned to see my revelation result’s. I am positive they will come at some point. In the meantime…
Hugs & Love – Ranae’

3

Art Begins in the Heart

Gallery (19)

So I finally have my site up and ready for launch, and I am so excited! I hope everyone will bare with me as I begin this new journey. It is my intention to not only show my own journey in the world of Art, but to also encourage and help others as I move forward.

Some may notice the name of my site url is Silver Thread Studio. This is actually my Company LLC name. The name came about with help from my dear friend Joanne Fink. As I was out to dinner with her one night I told her I was having a lot of trouble coming up with a name for my business. After fading off that topic I began to share some things in my life with her. I told her that through all the hard things I had to go through I always looked for ways to hold onto that silver thread of hope. I explained that for me the silver thread represented my mother always telling me to keep my chin up. Mom and my favorite saying was always I love you to the Moon and back, so in my mind the silver thread was a moon beam. When I would have hard times I would search for that silver moon beam thread. I could always find it somewhere, a smile from a stranger, a patch of red in a drab setting, a child giggling or maybe just a small ray of sunlight peeking in through my dark room.

As I told Joanne about this she stopped me and told me there is the name for your company. Silver Thread Studio. And I must of beamed as bright as my silver thread as I knew that was a perfect name for my business.

That said it is my business name and not my trade name. *giggles* So it won’t be seen as often. As you noted the name of my Site is Ranae’ – Art Begins in the Heart. Art always starts with passion, and of course passion starts in our hearts, wishes and dreams. So come join me on this journey into the depths of your own hearts and let’s have some fun learning and creating.

Remember there is NO such thing as bad art, mistakes, ugly art etc. Every creation has value and beauty and mistakes are nothing more than new opportunities to try something in a different way.

Thank you for joining me here.

Hugs & Love – Ranae’