Saturday, October 31, 2009

Memories by Jamie

This is a piece that my mother made this week. It is about memories with her mother and sister.
I like that she set up a little vignette for her whole piece. I love that everyone's mind thinks differently...
I hope you had fun creating!

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Punkin' Patch

We are really enjoying the Fall season around here! (I won't complain about it being 90 degrees...)
But we are enjoying all the pumpkins and Halloween parties.
Have a safe and fun Halloween, and I'll be back here on Sunday night for Make Some Art Monday!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

99 cent find leading to a million dollar question

I haven't been thrifting in a long time, but I've been on the look out for a few things so I went to Goodwill today. I didn't find anything I was looking for, but I did find this 99 cent pile of sticks.
It already had the hook on it and I didn't even want to spray paint it. I hung it in my bathroom to hang all my earrings. What do you think it was originally made for?
This is my favorite pair. I'm thinking of getting a short haircut again where you can actually see my earrings. My husband likes my hair long, and I've been trying to grow it out. But it just doesn't look like it used to.

How about you? Do you wear your hair like your husband likes it, or do you care? Or does he even care, for that matter?:)
I think we all want our husband to think our hair is beautiful, right? But if I don't FEEL beautiful, I don't think I'll look the part.
Short hair is so much easier, and in my case, I'm in need of style.
I'd love to hair (hear) ha ha your thoughts on it.
Oh, and I'm linking up to Kimm's Trash to Treasure.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Make Some Art Monday

Hello! Welcome to the very first "Make Some Art Monday"!
Did you make some art? I can't wait to see it. Remember the theme this week was quotes. But if you weren't inspired by a quote, or would rather share something else you made, please feel free to share.
This is the piece I made this week. I don't know if you can read the quote, but it says:
Normal day, let me be aware of the treasure you are. Let me learn from you, love you, bless you before you depart. Let me not pass you by in quest of some rare and perfect tomorrow. Let me hold you while I may, for it may not always be so. One day I shall dig my nails into the earth, or bury my face in the pillow, or stretch myself taut, or raise my hands to the sky and want, more than all the world, your return. -Mary Jean Iron

While I was gone I was missing my day to day tasks like laundry, packing lunches, helping with homework...all the normal every day activities that we sometimes complain about, but are really joyful common experiences.
I used a piece of watercolor paper cut to 8 x 10, painted the background with yellow and gold metallic acrylic paints, stamped numbers on the side, free-motion stitched around the numbers, and collaged the pictures, text, and paper shapes on.
I added the pom-pom fringe on the bottom and used a hole puncher and ribbon on the top to string it.
I want to hang it somewhere where it can be a daily reminder of how lucky I am to be at home with my kids, even amidst some of the monotonous days...:)
This is the inspiration for next week. I found this large mural in a Starbucks at the Charlotte airport. I love the enormity of it.
Look at the colors, the shapes, the randomness of the strokes...
I am very curious to see how this inspires you to create something. Or show us something else you made!
Don't just sit there...Make Some Art!!
If you are linking up this week, please remember to be kind and don't be a copy-cat!:)
1. Make sure to leave a permalink to your post, not to the whole blog.
2. Leave encouraging comments for others who are participating.
3. Please link back to this post in your blog entry.
I am so excited to see what you made. (I hope I'm not the only one...that would be terrible!)

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Jamie's Butterfly

My Mom doesn't have a blog, but she likes to read mine.
She also has never really done any art, but when she read about the challenge for "Make Some Art Monday", she wanted to participate. I told her I would post her piece.
I was completely surprized when I saw it! I didn't know she could do any of this. You did a great job Mom! I especially love all of your color choices...:)

Friday, October 23, 2009

Coming home...

This is my "hotel palette". When I was cleaning up tonite I just thought it was so pretty I had to take a picture.
I am E.X.H.A.U.S.T.E.D...
This week was very successful. Lots of hard work, but very successful.
I am falling into bed, and will spend the day tomorrow traveling home.
On Sunday I plan on loving on my family all day, but I will still be posting the linky party for "Make Some Art Monday". I will aim to post it up on Sunday night by 8 p.m.
By the way, if you have sent me an email this week, please give me a few more days to catch up!:)
Have a great weekend friends!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

I need YOUR help deciding...

I really need your help deciding on a picture for my author photo for the book.
Do you like this one?...

or this one?...
I personally think the second one is much more flattering!! ;0)


Good morning! This was the view from my hotel room this morning when I woke up. Pretty...
Unlike my hometown, Cincinnati is in the middle of Autumn. The leaves are changing and it's so beautiful!
Do you want to see a little bit behind the scenes? Here is a picture of my station. You can see the star of the show, my sewing machine, on the table. This is where the magic happens. (tee hee) F + W has a really big photo studio, with tons of cool props.
This is one of the many walls of supplies. If you need something, there is a 99% chance that they have it.

My editor is super sweet and cute, and I am lucky enough to work with the same photographer as I did in my other two books. She's awesome! My favorite part of the day is our hour long lunch breaks at the most delicious restaraunts. My husband thinks I keep writing books so I can be taken out to lunch every day. ;)
The contributors to this book are so talented, and I am so proud of this book! I cannot wait to see the publication on stands.
Okay, we are in crunch mode now, so I'm off to work. Is it Thursday already????

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Bragging rights

Did I mention that I am in Ohio this whole week on business? We are doing the photo shoot for my new book, and I have been here since Sunday.
When I walked into the hotel, I burst out in tears. A week without my babies? A week without my husband? I am a total homebody and I like to be totally immersed in what all my kids are doing. But after a little cry and a coaching session from hubby I was better. Now I am actually enjoying the week!

Tonite I started editing these photos I took last week. Would you indulge me in some bragging?

I am so proud of this kid. Logan and I have been through some semi-rough patches. You know, normal boy stuff...but enough to keep me worried some days. He is turning out to be such a wonderful young man. He is so funny! A natural athlete, Logan is good at everything he tries. He is very loving too. He is a natural born leader, and I can't wait to see what the future holds for him.
Ashton is our sweetheart. This is a boy born with a heart of gold. He would not, and could not, even hurt a fly. Although he is unaware of it, he is a ladies man. His teachers tell me all the little girls want to play with Ashton. He has a one-track mind...when he gets into something it is very hard to tear him away from it. In Kindergarden, he is already reading very well. You usually don't have to tell him to do something more than once, because his gentle spirit does not want to disappoint anyone!
Oh, Ava. My girl. Our only daughter. Precious and cute, she's got an itty bitty temper when things don't go her way. Ava has wonderful manners...she never forgets to say please, thank you, yes mam, yes sir. She is in the midst of three year old fantasy land. She loves to play pretend. She is a caretaker and likes to take charge of Jackson. This little girl has all her brothers and her daddy wrapped around her little finger.
Baby Jackie. Jackson. Jack-Jack. Jax. Bubba. Googie. Googa-waga. The one-year old with 1,000 names.
This little boy does not miss a beat. He thinks he is one of the big kids. Teeny-tiny sits at the big table and eats with a fork and spoon. The highchair was gone almost 2 months ago. He follows all the big ones around. Goes down the big kids slide at the park. Takes off his diaper when it is wet. He may be 15 months old, but he is the youngest of five and intends to keep up with all of them!
We have been so blessed with all of our children. My step-son Carson is 19 years old, and he is such a wonderful young man too!
Can you tell I'm missing them?:)
I'll be back tomorrow with some pictures of my trip...

Monday, October 19, 2009

Make Some Art Monday

I had an idea last night.
Don't say uh-oh...:)
Will you join me?
Every Monday let's come here and link up. We'll show each other something we made during the week.
A painting or drawing?
A mixed-media piece?
A mosaic?
Something you've sewn?
A holiday craft?
Just create Something!

I know a lot of you are artists by trade. You sell your pieces on Etsy or your web site. Some of you want to sell your pieces but don't know if they are ready. And some of you just want to play, have fun, and create things for your house or as gifts. Everyone is welcome! This is meant to be an encouraging place to come and share!

There are only two rules.
1. No copying! Unless of course someone says it's okay, or shares a tutorial.
Inspiration is great, copying is not. If you are inspired by someone's style, please give them credit. But please do not directly re-create someone else's work.
2. Positive comments only. Some of you will be looking for constructive criticism, which I think is wonderful. But please don't go and bash anyone. I don't know any of you that would do that, but I have to say it.

Every week I will give you a guided "theme". If you make something else, that's great. Please still share! But some of you may want a little guidance. This week let's find one of our favorite quotes. It could be something you made up, some scripture, a famous quote that inspires you. Paint it, collage it, experiment with different types of writing...the sky is the limit. I cannot wait to see what you come up with.

Take some time for yourself this week to create something! Will you come and link up next week?

Sunday, October 18, 2009

The Power of the Written Word

I looooove this photo. It is a picture of my grandmother, holding my father when he was a baby. I believe they were in Philadelphia? 1947...
It has been two years this weekend that my father passed away. Sigh...
I was very pregnant when this picture was taken. And very happy.

Along with the photographs my most treasured items from my Dad are letters, poems, and cards he wrote to me. He was a very talented (and published) writer, and he always put a lot of thought into what he wrote.
When I was 10 years old someone at our elementary school read us the book The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein. I really loved that book, and I went home and wrote and illustrated my own version over the weekend. I showed my Dad, and the next day he brought me home a copy from the book store. Inside he inscribed it...

Isn't it special? Because of this, I try to always inscribe books that I buy my children.
The power of the written word was passed down to me by my father. I love reading. I love writing. I love typography. I love seeing people's handwriting and I treasure handwritten notes and cards.
I am missing my Dad so much this weekend, but I am so grateful that I have these things to remember him by!:)
"Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted." Matthew 5:4

Friday, October 16, 2009

Chrissie Grace Designs

I get a lot of questions about my business, and I thought I would answer some of them by participating in Kelly's party about mom's who have their own small businesses. So if your new here, welcome! And if you come by often, thanks so much for reading and leaving comments and supporting me in all my endeavors!

I have loved art since I was a very little girl. It is a huge part of who I am. If I didn't make any money doing art, I would still do it every single day. It keeps me together, and creating brings so much joy to my soul!

I am a mixed-media mosaic artist and author, and I work almost exclusively from home. I will be leaving this weekend for a photo shoot for my new book and I'll be gone for a whole week! That is a very rare occurence!
Here I am working on a custom painting for the city of Sebastian. These doors were auctioned off for an Autism Event.

These are some of my "She Said" prints, which are available in my etsy shop. I have a lot of big dreams with this line. In the new year I am planning on turning these into not only prints, but cards, necklaces, pillows, and other new items.

I started this series after coming up with the concept of Family Rules. These are also available in my etsy shop.
I started my business over 10 years ago. I was getting my Bachelors Degree in Art Education at the time and I was totally intimidated by all the "real artists" in my class that could draw realistically. Mosaics became my thing!

I started doing lots of local art shows, and through the years I started getting a lot of custom orders by word of mouth.
I've done lots of stuff for schools and city projects, including this 7 foot Alligator.

In 2004 I wrote and published my first book with Northlight Publishing. It is a how-to book on Mosaics. I wrote and published another book with them in 2006 on mosaics as well.
Mosaics are very time consuming, and as we added to our family every couple of years, it became harder to have tile and glass laying around. So I slowly started to get back to mixed-media and painting.

My newest passion is sewing and quilting.
Fabric is my new favorite media.
I love to do custom orders for people, like this monogrammed set of dishtowels.
There's a whole world of sewing and quilting that I'm just beginning to learn about.
The number one question I get is how I work with four kids at home.

My answer is...very sporadically! I give myself self-imposed deadlines, and sometimes work late at night or on the weekends to keep up with them. Naptime is usually spent working, and a lot of times my kids will be painting right alongside of me!

Of course they are my first priority, so there are some days when I don't get any work done!:)
You can see a lot of my art archives at my flickr account here. I do love custom work so please feel free to email me any time!

Thanks so much for stopping by, and have a great weekend friends!