Saturday, February 28, 2009

Vincent van Gogh, my friend

Hello all,

I just finished reading the book, "The Yellow House" ( van Gogh, gauguin, and nine turbulent weeks in provence).
And I couldn't put the book down!
I am a huge Vincent van Gogh fan and I have a book collection of over 40 books written about him and his art. Books about the spiritual side of Vincent, about the women in his life, the complete letters he wrote to his brother Theo, etc. and this Yellow house book has been calling to me for awhile to take it down off of the bookcase and read it's contents, so I finally did and I am soooo happy I heeded the books call.
For Vincent, the yellow house represented a place where he would finally be accepted, a place where other artists would come together in harmony and create art side by side, a brotherhood of artists.
Paul Gauguin was to be the yellow houses's first guest, the total opposite of Vincent van gogh, and maybe that's why Vincent was drawn to him.
The two artists work together for awhile but eventually tempers and egos get in the way and all does not end well.
(This is where the incident of "the ear" takes place)
And even in the midst of conflict and strife Vincent van Gogh engages in one of his most astonishing creative spirits in Western art. During his year in Arles, he produces some two hundred paintings, many of which were masterpieces!
While in France, my husband and I traveled to the various cities where Vincent had lived.
We got to see the yellow house in Arles and the cafe where he hung out with friends.
And then we traveled to St. Remy and stayed right down the road from the asylum where Vincent lived for a bit. It definitely was a very surreal feeling walking down the haunting empty
hallway where this great artist also had walked.
Our last part of the trip was spent walking the dusty streets in Auvers where Vincent spent his last days
and it is forever etched into my soul of the day I got to sit in the room where Vincent lived the last weeks of his life, so heart wrenching and inspirational, all at the same time.

The day of visiting Vincent and Theos grave melded my heart with theirs and I will never forget that gorgeous blue sky I gazed upon as I stood at the foot of their gravestones.

Vincent van Gogh was a very complex man, full of genius, detemination and complexity and the last paragraph of the book puts it all so wonderfully, so I will leave you with it's words.

"Vincent wasn't only an inspired, mad artist; he was a great painter desperately trying to remain sane. He saw the world with a rare intensity which gave great power to his work. And it was while looking and painting that he knew the greatest pleasure of which his tormented nature was capable."

talk to you soon,

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Romance and decorating

Hi all,
Just thought I'd show you a couple of corners of my home.

I have always loved the look of dried flowers, so I have a few bouquets hanging up here and there in my house.
I don't do anything special to make them dry, I just hang them upside down and they do the rest.

Simple but beautiful.

talk to you soon,

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

When it rains, it pours!

Hi all,

Yes, it has been raining and snowing here in Northern California like crazy, which is a wonderful thing, because our state needs it sooooo badly! But, I'm not talking about that kind of downpour, I'm talking about my latest winning streak of blog giveaways!

Being a total optimist, I enter the contests with plenty of hope and faith, trying to look past the list of names that are also hoping that their name will be the "lucky winner".
And, then out of the blue, I won not one, not two, but three of the last giveaways that I entered!
I felt like I had won the lottery and squealed with delight with each pkg. that came in my mailbox. My poor hubby had to endure my "look, honey, aren't this cute" remarks but I actually think he was getting a kick out of my being so thrilled with all the goodies!

Hope you enjoy seeing my "winnings" and I hope that you will check out the shops and blogs of the wonderful artists who put on these lovely giveaways.

The first giveaway I won was from the wonderful shop on etsy called
I met this artist on the mixed media thread and when I saw that she was having a giveaway I jumped at the chance to take part! And, I'm sooooo happy I did.
Artsnark also has a blog called "ArtSnark's Artifacts, art and musings for the eclectic soul" so when you get a chance jump over there and check it out, you'll be glad you did.
I can't wait to use the heart punch and rubber stamp on my own creations and the artists board and pretty papers are perfect for my collages.
Thanks ArtSnark for all the wonderful goodies :)

The second giveaway was from and I have been a fan of this shop since I first joined etsy. The reason why? because of their amazing and beautiful hand decoupaged egg and ball ornaments!
My dream is to decorate my christmas tree in these gorgeous ornaments one day! And now I have my very own collection started and I couldn't be more thrilled!
Catnipstudio also has a beautiful blog, so make sure you take a little time to enjoy the wonderful photos and musings :)
Thank you catnipstudio for all the lovely goodies, the tags, the beautiful paper and stencils and now my own gorgeous ornaments!

And last but not least! Thank you to Every time I browse this shop, I am just blown away from the darling creations! So unique and pretty and I had been stalking a certain french style necklace in the shop for months and one day I just couldn't take the waiting any longer and bought it for my very own!
I wear it every chance I get and it gets so many compliments.
Tiedupmemories is new to the blogging world and this was her first blog contest, so I feel very honored to be the winner of her very first giveaway!
So, if you are in need of a cheery fun blog then check it out :)
Thankyou, tiedupmemories for such a darling prize.

Hope this post encourages you to throw your own name into the ring of giveaways.
You'll be happy you did :)
talk to you soon,

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Painting is really my passion

Hi all,
I just wanted to show off my latest art creation.
Lately I've been really longing to get back to my original love, which is
Now don't get me wrong, I still love crafting, but getting that paint brush in
my hand just brings me such joy. I've been a painter since childhood and
when I swirl that paint around on the palette and dip the brush into the
acrylics, a feeling of complete unity overtakes my whole being!
It never feels foreign to me, just ease and familiarity.
The one down side though is that each piece takes me quite a bit of
time to create, which doesn't help me fill up my etsy shop very quickly.
Anyway, that's another issue, lol.
My plan is to start painting alot more and this is just the start of my
color series.
I'm really excited about my next series which is going to be based on
the inspiration of Vincent Van Gogh, so stay tuned for more color.
talk to you soon,