Filed under: catalyst
As always, thank you to all of our visitors and all the encouraging comments you left for us. For those of you who did, thank you for playing along with us. We will do a drawing for the RAK and announce the name mid-week. And if you didn’t join us before, we hope you do this time.
Ok! Here’s catalyst number twenty-four:
What’s something that inspires you?
We’re very excited to have Chris Cozen as this week’s Guest Artist.
I found Chris’s blog while I was jumping around from one art blog to another and the moment I saw it, I couldn’t resist the urge to ask if she would guest design for us. Chris’s paintings are so meaningful and emotional that I couldn’t stop looking at them one by one. Each painting tells a different story and there’s so much detail that the more I look the more I discover. It is no surprise that Kris is a Golden Acrylic Paints Working Artist and that she teaches workshops all over. And she’s authored an amazing book, Altered Surfaces to rave reviews.
If you haven’t seen her art before, you must check out her website. We are so honored to have her here.
Chris’s art with this catalyst is below and you can click it to see a bigger version.
Let me first say that art has always been a part of my expressive self. Color is my first language! I cannot remember a time in my life that I didn’t have something creative going on. For years it was my “weekend” escape from my days as an educator. Creativity was part of my thought processing. I love to problem solve!
I chose to use courage as my catalyst because it is something that truly colors the way I see life.
For 15 years I have had a quote hanging where I can see it every day that says “change, of any sort, requires courage.” 15 years ago I was diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis and was faced with giving up my life long career as an early childhood educator. I could no longer give the children and their families the attention they needed as I was in constant pain and wore a splint on my dominant hand along with many other joints that were problematic. That quote kept me focused that I could go forward to some as yet undefined place. I struggled for a few years on many different medications until 2000 when new drugs became available that literally gave me back my body. It made me believe that miracles do exist. I still live with pain, but it is a whisper compared to what I knew before. I can handle whispers.
When I got rid of the splint on my hand I knew that I was obligated to embrace ART in a way I had never done before. I could not waste one more moment. So I jumped in, got myself wet and haven’t stopped since. I recently came across a new quote on courage that goes like this “Courage doesn’t always roar.” That is so true. We can never know what our lives will hold. We can so easily slip into places of despair. Courage is what keeps our heads above water and allows us to hope.
In 2005, four years after I plunged into art full time I participated in a 3-woman show in the South of France. While there I was asked to share my techniques with the local artist community. I taught three impromptu sessions in mixed media and knew immediately that I needed to teach again. I spoke that wish aloud to my friend on our trip home. Little did I know that there would be an opportunity sitting in the mail waiting for me at home. Golden Artist Colors has a program known as “Working Artists.” There was a mass mail postcard announcing that they were looking for a Los Angeles artist to train. Well, I don’t have a degree in art, but I have a lot of courage. So I jumped in again and here I am. I have worked with this amazing company for the last few years and I am teaching art again! I wrote a book last year called Altered Surfaces and just finished another one on Transfer techniques. It’s amazing!
Changes in life do require courage, but remember that courage doesn’t always roar! Be aware of those moments when the door opens. Seize the opportunity to go through. Embrace your potential.
Thank you so much Chris; we’re truly delighted.
Here are some interpretations of the catalyst from members of our team. Click on the photos to see the bigger versions.
It was difficult to pick just one thing that inspires me. So many things inspire me – feeling healthy, the smile on my husband’s face, new art supplies, looking out my studio window… It’s a different thing each day. So I realized that the best way to say this is to paint a sunrise. Each morning’s possibilities inspire me. Each day I have an opportunity to look at the world in a new way and to figure out how to represent it in my art.
Painting in watercolor on cold press watercolor paper.
What inspired me since I was small is the magical world. I love the world of fairies, elves who bring stories and beautiful illustrations.
I used scrap paper, diluted inks, acrylic gold, music paper, stamps, freezing gloss medium inlaid with pearls and the 3D contour of painting.
Ce qui m’inspire depuis que je suis petite c’est le monde féérique, j’aime l’univers des fées, des elfes, les histoires qui s’en rapproche et la beauté des illustrations. Pour les techniques utilisées : Il y’a du papier de scrap, des encres diluées, de l’acrylique doré, du papier de musique, des tampons, du gel médium brillant avec des perles incrustées et sur le contour de la peinture 3D.
A few months ago, I took this class where we talked about who we are as a whole and what we’d like to stand for in the world. We created three to four areas of things that we stood for. My four were: peace, family, changing the world, and creativity. These are the areas that inspire me. I want to feel a strong sense of peace every day. I want to leave the world better than I found it. I want to have strongly bonded and supportive family. And I want to foster creativity within myself and others.
For this week’s catalyst, I took a photo for each area and printed them together. I then sewed between the photographs to create pockets and inside each pocked I tucked two sets of journaling. One was a list of things that inspire me around that category and the other was a list of things I aspire to do in each area. Whenever I have to make a choice about how to spend my time or how to decide around a commitment, I look at this page and see if it fits within one of my squares. This makes sure that the life I live is aligned with my priorities.
Inspiration can come in many forms. One day you’re taken in by the sights of something. The next day it might be a smell. I am energized by several things:
4. Seeing other people’s work
5. The little pile of odds and ends on my desk
6. New tools and supplies
7. Vintage anything
8. Artsy blogs
9. A nice juicy new colorful pen
10. 80’s music
I’m inspired to create!
Background is a layering process. Fluid acrylics to swipe all over the watercolor paper, mostly swirly strokes. Liquid watercolors mixed for the aqua and painted over the whole thing. Stamped shaped & star with white gesso and fluid acrylics. Took a brayer, rolled it through black paint, rolled it over a 1-10 numbers stamp, rolled off some of the ink and then rolled onto the background. It transfers some of the paint, plus the negative of the letter stamps. It’s hard to see all that since I covered it up with the list and ‘Create’ letters but it makes for a great background.
I’m inspired by all things Mixed Media. I read artists blogs, magazines, ezines and anything else I can find related to mixed media. My favorite magazines are the Stampington publications, including Somerset Studio, Somerset Sew, Somerset Life, Somerset Home and Somerset Workshop. I am addicted and buy them as soon as I see them, for the pure eye candy. I saw these adorable paper watches by Connie Govea Stuart in Somerset Workshop Vol. 3 and decided to give it a whirl. I’ve been wanting to try these since I saw them and there was no better time than this catalyst.
there are lots and lots of things as well as people who inspire me on a daily basis.. but silence is something which challenges me to move beyond and at the same time calms and balances me.. in this hectic world sometimes silence is hard to find but you can always make your own choices…. i make a point of not watching tv (oh yeah we put ours away a while ago now – the best thing for a peaceful mind) and not having any music playing at night while i am on my own and paint or write..
i painted diluted ink on an A3 size heavy watercolour paper, then sprayed some luminarte pigments over the top. when dry, i stamped and embossed the letters (my own words)..
It says: “sun, sea, colors, vintage” These are the most important things that inspire me to create. I love to walk on the beach when the sun is in the sky to watch the sea and birds flying in the sky. They give me a feeling of freedom. Colors are the base of my work, without colors I can’t create !!! And vintage, I really really love old and vintage things … old books, old furnitures, old clothes, old fabrics … they give me a lot of ideas.
Now it’s your turn: show us your therapeutic art around “what’s something you collect or hoard?” I urge you to give it a try. Embrace the healing power of art. It can be any form of art as long as it speaks to you.
Leave us comments with your work and we will send a RAK to a random participant. You’ll have to link your art by Sunday night, August 31st, midnight PST to qualify for this week’s RAK. If you don’t have a community or blog where you upload photos, you can upload them on our flickr group.
There’s a recent change in RAK rules: to qualify for our weekly RAK drawing, all you have to do is do art around ANY of our catalysts. It doesn’t have to be the one from this week. We believe in the healing power of art and we want you to pick whichever catalyst inspires you the most.
For our RAK for this week, we are thrilled to be giving away a beautiful kit from our sponsor Scrapperie.
Remember, this is not a competition. If your art makes you feel even a bit better at the end, you’ve won.
Until next week, enjoy each and every moment.
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