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September’s Blog-o-Sphere Think Tank’s subject is “Share an image you really love right now”.

There are so many, but I love this one. Dan captured me during one of my early Chasing & Repoussé moments. Not everything is technically correct, yet I love looking at my hands working. I’m practicing. I’m learning. My goal is to continue to do so for as long as I live in this world. I can say my technique and skill has improved since this was taken two years ago.

It’s all part of my motivation to become a better artist.

Let’s see what my fellow bloggers shared on this topic.

Until next time, I continue to aspire to be more as an artist and a person.

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June’s topic for the Blog-o-Sphere Think tank is:  “If you could learn anything, what would it be?

It just so happens that I finished my second workshop with Il Maestro Fabrizio Acquafresca this past week.  I wanted to refine my skills in Chasing & Repoussé.

The week has been filled with ups and downs, joys and sorrows as I struggled to grasp the concepts to create movement in metal. Even though I have diligently been practicing, I just was not seeing any improvement. I desperately want to become one of the best and master Chasing & Repoussé.

I know this will be a life long journey and I am willing to commit to it. Even though I began to learn the technique two years ago this month, deep down I knew I was stuck in my development. With this piece, I now know my work will begin to grow again. It just takes time and LOTS of practice, coupled with the guidance and instruction of a master of the craft. It has been said that Fabrizio is the best instructor of this technique in the world. I would agree that he is. It is my honor to call him friend and I am indebted to him for sharing his gift with the world.

Now let’s see what my fellow bloggers had to say about this topic.

Until next time, I continue to aspire to be more as an artist and a person.

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As a happy coincidence would have it, this month’s Blog-o-Sphere Think Tank topic is, what are you looking forward to?

Tonight is the opening reception for my first joint artist exhibit, Botanical Expressions at Commonwheel Artists Co-op in Manitou Springs CO. I am most definitely looking forward to tonight!

I’ve shared a bit about my preparations and some of the new works. Here’s another sampling of some of the works that will be on display and available for purchase if any call to you.

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The reception runs from 5-8 PM tonight. If you are in the area, I hope you can join us. The exhibit runs through June 13th. A wonderful opportunity to see Chasing & Repoussé art jewelry with beautiful watercolors by fellow artist and friend, Jo Gaston. Great art, great people, great location. A perfect way to spend your Friday night!

Now let’s see what my fellow bloggers are looking forward to:

Andes Cruz
marie bell
Diana Bell

Until next time, I continue to aspire to be more as an artist and a person.

February’s topic for the Blog-o-Sphere Think Tank is “What are some of my priorities?” I took some liberties with the title, generally things for this month will center on what are some of our top thoughts, concerns, or focuses?

I must admit I do have a lot on my mind.

For whatever reason, I seem pulled to consider the options available if Dan & I choose to move to the Pacific Northwest. This type of move is not in our immediate future that I know of, yet, the pull to research the possibilities is strong. Right now I’m doing my best to focus on the present.

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The desire to be in my studio and practice my craft is a constant. Most days I get in there and do something. The pull to work with my hands, coupled with developing new designs is formidable.

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There is an awareness that I need to spend quality type with Dan and the bassets. We do out best to have date night on the weekends. Dinner out, a late lunch or movie, discussions about the events during the week and plans for the future. With the dogs, I try to avail my lap for snuggle moments with the pups every day. I know they need to spend time with me as every morning, as I attempt to eat breakfast, I am buried under a pile-o-bassets.

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Paring down on the unused and unnecessary articles of clothing, decorations, etc. One of the good things I saw on Facebook in the past week was related to Lent. Completely different from the normal 40 days of ritual, use this time as a benefit to myself and someone else by going through my closet and selecting an article of clothing that I do not wear. One item, each of the 40 days, to donate to a worthy organization that will help others in need. I like that, so I’m doing it. It helps with removing the superfluous things, plus someone else benefits. Bonus.

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Disclaimer….this is NOT my closet….yet!

Preparing for upcoming exhibits is a must. Added to that, I am considering what avenues will work best for finding my target audience. I have yet to find a satisfactory answer.

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My journey in faith, while I mention it last, it is my number one priority.

Those are just a few of the things that continually bubble up to the top of my priority list. I know I can’t do it all at once, so I do my best to carve out bits of time to focus on just one thing.

Now let’s see what my fellow bloggers had to say on this topic:

Andes Cruz:
marie bell
Robyn Hawk
Beth Cyr
Diana Bell

Until next time, I continue to aspire to be more as an artist and a person.

 

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January’s topic for the Blog-o-Sphere think tank is, “What has had an impact on me lately?” It was this quote from Steve Martin, shared by a Facebook friend and social media guru, John Paul Aguilar.  It just hit me like a ton of bricks. I have this quote in a number of places so I can see it every day.

Why did this resonate with me? Well, I think it’s fair to say that we’ve all experienced being snubbed. In the art world, where I think I can feel a bit more vulnerable, it has happened. Generally, I find this type of behavior, to make someone else feel less than adequate, tends to come from shallow, insecure individuals. I just do my best to brush off the negative feelings I experience, as they serve no purpose.

When I saw this quote, it made me smile in its wisdom and simplicity. “Be so good they can’t ignore you.” Yes! That’s it.

Thank you Steve for saying this. Thank you John for sharing. May this have the same positive influence on you that it has had on me.

Now let’s see what my fellow bloggers have to share on this month’s topic.

Until next time, I continue to aspire to be more as an artist and a person….oh yes, I am going to be so good, I cannot be ignored.

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“Why do I do What I do?” is the starting point for this month’s topic of the Blog-o-Sphere Think Tank discussion.

Initially, this question stopped me in my tracks. How do I answer this? Then it became clear.

There is a force that is part of my personality. It drives who I am. I am compelled to be creative. I need to work with my hands because I find it fulfilling. I have done this for as long as I can remember. Whether it was coloring books and not staying inside the lines. Knitting and dropping a stitch. Sewing and needing to rip out crooked seams. Stained glass and dealing with glass fractures. Metalwork and melting bezels. With each exploration comes a fall; the proverbial scraping of the knee and then healing.

The joy of expression that I love is the creative process. Sure there are failures but that just means I am growing as an artist. If I wasn’t trying new things, I would remain stagnate and I find that unacceptable. As long as there is breath in my body, I am going to be making things, experimenting, learning and yes, growing.

Each of us are born with gifts; a particular talent or talents unique to who we are. I know this to be true. As I was meditating and reflecting earlier in this year, it was as if my eyes were opened and understanding grew like a sunrise in my mind. Maybe that’s where the expression “It dawned on me” came from….a glorious sunrise enveloping everything in bright warm light making the obscure visible. I finally knew and understood that I was given the gift to be an artist and express my interpretation of God’s creations.

Those who know my work, know I am drawn to trees. They are my muses. For years I attempted to interpret their unique beauty. Now I have found a niche through my Treescape and Botanical series to express my love of them.

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Dendritic Opal Pendant Set in Sterling Silver from Treescapes

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Aspen cuff in Sterling Silver  from Botanicals

Please let me encourage all of you to find your inner gifts. They are there. You may already be using them. Or they may be fighting to come out. Either way, living deep within you is the drive and the force to be seen and heard. They are fighting to reach the surface of your being because they are an essential part of who you are. Listen. Allow those abilities to manifest. Will there be moments of disappointment and discouragement? Yes. These are inevitable as you seek to discover your gifts. Please do not let perceived failures dissuade you from your true path. Please ignore to the inner and outer critics. Be fearless.

Know this. Joy awaits you as your inner gifts awaken and grow with your loving attention and nurturing.

Now lets see what my fellow bloggers had to share on this topic:

Andes Cruz 

angelojones

Diana Bell

Until next time, aspire to be more as an artist and a person.

August’s topic for the Blog-o-Sphere Think Tank:  “How do you envision the possibilities for the future?”

My husband and I have been thinking about this with greater focus for the past couple of years. We’ve been doing a lot of research about where we would like to live, because as my husband puts it, “Retirement opens a whole new world of opportunity”. Why not consider relocating?

As I have thought about the future, my future, our future, these are some of my expectations, hopes, wishes, goals and more.

Where ever we choose to live, I want to get up every morning and enjoy some form of exercise. Whether that’s walks with the dogs, workouts in the privacy of our home or refreshing swims. It’s important to me to keep active. It clears my mind, releases those lovely little endorphins and keeps the blood circulating.

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I want to be more involved as an artist. Work in my studio every day. Get together with fellow artists. Be part of the local art community. Continue to find new venues for my work. Being creative is essential to how I want to live.

Location, location, location. Where will we live? We’ve been exploring the NW. Washington state has an appeal for all its beauty, proximity to the ocean, mountains, wildlife, hiking, photographic opportunity and artist community. We love living in Colorado. It has much of the same appeal as Washington state does, yet the winters in Colorado can be more cold with more snow. We are still undecided on this topic and fortunately, we still have plenty of time to make decisions.

It’s my opinion that you have to prepare for the future you want. That doesn’t mean that you need to become obsessed with it in terms of the “I’ll be happy when…” syndrome. It just means that there needs to be some awareness of where you want to be and what you want to do as you make decisions in the present. Those present day decisions will have an affect on your future.

I can say I am looking forward to what the future may hold and trust that it will be good.

Let’s see what my fellow bloggers had to say about their anticipated futures:

Andes Cruz
angelojones
Tosca Teran
Diana Bell

Until next time, I continue to aspire to be more as an artist and a person.

Kathleen Krucoff


Artist and Metalsmith

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