Thursday, June 2, 2016

I'm giving away a hand stitched art journal

A couple weeks ago I saw the most adorable journal cover on Pinterest and had to find who made it.

                                                                 It was Teesha Moore.
                                                   Here is an example of the Art she does.

I realize that she has been around the Creative current for ages and I remember seeing her art before and thinking "weird!!" in a wonderful way.

                                This time it was her hand quilting that really caught my eye .   
                     She made bags and book covers with her little patches.
Im not even sure if this is an actual Teesha Moore but you can see the style that caught my attention.

Messy and irregular, covered with a wild assortment of beads and buttons, even keys were sewn on in places.  I loved it and started looking for more examples.  

Teesha has been kind enough to make some YouTube tutorial videos. 

 I watched as many as I could so I could learn how to make my own 
funky quilt patchwork something or other.  

Then I started cutting and sewing and hand stitching and attempting to piece together all my little patches. It took me 2 weeks.  I poked my finger with my needle so often that it has no feeling in the very tip anymore.  

When I was done I had a big pile of little patchy quilt pieces.  
I decided to make some art journals and had enough for 3 journal covers.

I added a signature of mixed media paper and stitched it into the journal cover.

 I don't need to keep them all so I  have decided to share one of my home made art journals with you.  

So if you would like the chance to win my Teesha Moore Inspired Art Journal then this is what you have to do.
Send me some love!  Leave me some comments and visit my sites.

You can leave a comment on my blog (1) , 
on my facebook page (2),  Lori Bradford's Art, 
visit my web page (3) 
like my Etsy page (4)  

I will add your name into the draw for each comment and like. 

 That means your name can go into the draw 4 times!

Easy, right!  

I will draw the winner on June 21th, 2016.  That should give you lots of time.  

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

What do you do when you hit a dry spell?

It happens to me every time I have to pack up my art supplies and get ready to travel. Twice a year I do it and you would think that by now I would have some kind of strategy or plan or trick but I haven't figured it out yet.

Every April I pack up my paints, new art supplies and finished or half finished paintings and load them into the truck for the week long trip back to our home in Saskatchewan from our winter place in Texas.  I am usually just hitting my stride, making lots of art and finding new ways to be creative and then I have to stop and pack.  I always have a project to work on while we travel and this time it was an Art Quilt that needed some beading and embroidery. 

Well I got the art quilt done before we got home and then and managed to haul all the new supplies into my studio.  Then I spent 3 good days rearranging all those supplies.  After I was done I stood there and looked. 

Looked at all that stuff, all those wonderful possibilities and nothing happened.  I couldn't decide what do next.  Should I grab a canvas and paint some more or my sketch book and do some drawing.  Maybe I should get my art journal and just toss some paint around and see what happens.  Nothing happened. 

I wandered into my studio 2 or 3 times a day with great plans to start.  Then wandered out again.  I cleaned my closet, took 2 big bags of cloths to the Salvation Army.  I dug all the raised beds in my garden and greenhouse and emptied my compost bin.  I took the dog for a walk and read a couple books.  Oh and I looked at Pinterest, now is that a time grabber or what? 

Art just wasn't happening and I really hate these dry spells. 

Then this afternoon I grabbed a canvas off the shelf and poured a puddle of yellow ink on it and smeared it all around. 

Hmmmm a start.  I dropped some alcohol ink on it, interesting stuff happened.

I like teal and blue and green gold so I started putting that over the yellow and a painting was born.  More blues and some green and then some orange.  Well I will just let my intuition take me where ever Im supposed to go with this.  At least I'm painting again. 

I have no idea what it will look like when it's done. 

Stay tuned.

Thursday, March 17, 2016

Flowers for weeks 7, 8 and 9

I'm fortunate enough to live in a sub-tropical climate for half of every year.  The tip of Texas is about the same latitude as the Florida Keys, shares the Gulf of Mexico and has some amazing winter weather, especially for this Canadian Gal. 

The flowers are endless and I have no shortage of subjects.  What I am short of is time to paint them. I'm falling behind on my promise to myself of one flower painting a week. 
I actually have 3 paintings to share today, weeks 7, 8 and 9. 

We took a week at the end of February to explore the north east side of Texas and the west side of Louisiana, an area that is known as the Piney Woods. 

Magnolias blooming at the Melrose Plantation on the Cane River in Louisiana

While there, the Magnolia trees were blooming and I just couldn't resist bringing a small one back to our place to plant in my yard. 

I picked one covered in buds and it seems it loves it's new home as all of those buds opened and more are coming. 
Ana Magnolia blooms just opening.
My little Lemon tree is blooming and smells like heaven. 
My lemon in bloom.

Lemon Flowers

The last flower painting is from the huge Olive tree that lives on the corner across the street.  I have been told that the tree is over 100 years old.
The ancient Olive tree that I see out my front window.  This is as close as I get to snow on the ground.

Olive flowers

Friday, March 4, 2016

Lessons learned

I like to keep a list of artists who's work I admire, I call these artists my Art Ancestors.  Some of them like Monet and Emily Carr, did their work a long time ago and some I have found through Facebook or their blogs so are current.

One of those current artists who I admire is Jodi Ohl.
Check out her work for yourself if you like. 

I wanted to learn some of Jodi's techniques for her mixed media paintings and the best way to do that was to take one of her classes.   I down loaded her lesson from the internet and got to work. 

I purchased a video lesson called "Tandem Techniques: 15 Mixed Media Techniques for Canvas and Art Journals" from  You can follow the link at the bottom of this blog if you want to check out the class yourself. 

I watched the video, took notes and then went out into my studio and started painting. 

Jodi taught her 15 techniques while painting feathers so that is what I painted.  When I was done I had finished five paintings. 

I took her techniques and added some of my own.  I used my own paint colours but picked those closest to Jodi's.  It is important to put your own personal style on your paintings.

This is the first one I did after the class. 

These others, and I apologize for the poor photos, were all done since the class. 

Here are a few close ups.

What a Good Artist understands
is that nothing comes from nowhere. 
All creative work builds on what comes before. 
Nothing is completely original. 
>Austin Kleon<
  Author of the book " Steal like an Artist".

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

week 6 Ornamental Cabbage or maybe it's Kale.

My flowering kale or cabbage has an interesting story.

I bought 6 bedding plants way back in November of 2014 and they grew to look fantastic in the pots in front of my winter home.  Last  winter was extra cool and damp.  They seemed to love the temperatures and really put on a show for us. 
from the winter of 2014/15

When we were ready to head home to Canada in April the plants were still looking great and I had a hard time abandoning them to the hot Texas summer.  The pots dry out real fast and here isn't much I can do except take them out of the pots and transplant them into the ground where they at least have a little chance of getting some moisture. 

When I got back here this fall I was surprised to see that 2 of them were still alive, well barely alive but still showing a bit of green on top of a long, slightly leaning stem.  I started watering them and gave them a little fertilizer and away those guys went once again! 

What great plants. 

I wanted to fill my pots with Ornamental Cabbage again this winter but after searching high and low in all the green houses I could not find any.  Luckily for me the old fellows that managed to stay  alive thrived and put on a wonderful show of colour for me and my neighbours. 

I have noticed some little baby plants growing in the shade of the big fellows.  Could they have set seed some time along the way?   I hope these little babies grow for me during this summer and are here to great me when I arrive again  in the fall. 

I will be very honest and admit that I don't care much for this weeks painting.  I am not very happy with how it turned out.  Im not going to stress about it though.  Learning how to paint is a process and I have lots of weeks and lots of  flowers left to practice on.  It's not really about making perfect paintings but about setting the goal of one flower painting a week as well as making my art a daily routine. 


Saturday, February 6, 2016

week 5 - Bird of Paradise

I had to go to a neighbors for this weeks flower.  I did say I was going to paint flowers in my yard and garden but not much is blooming right now so I ventured down the block a little. 

This project of painting a flower every week is going well.  Easier that a diet! Well for me it is at lease.  I usually loose interest in things much faster than 5 weeks.  I think it's because I have combined two things I love, gardening and painting. 

The Birds of Paradise flower inflorescence is borne atop long scapes, or pedicels, that grow to 5 feet or more in height. The flower on the Birds of Paradise plant is the most unusual part.
A series of highly colored bracts, or modified leaves, are formed into green, red, and or purplish canoe-like structures. Bracts vary between 4-8 inches long, depending upon the age and size of the Birds of Paradise plant.
Each Birds of Paradise flower is made up of three upright orange sepals and three highly modified vivid blue petals. Two of the petals are joined together in a structure resembling an arrowhead with the third petal forming a nectary at the base of the flower.
Each bract contains 2 or more protruding Birds of Paradise florets of bright yellow or orange elongated petals and a bright blue tongue. The female part of the Birds of Paradise flower is the long extension of the blue tongue, which is extended well away from the stamens.

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

week 4: Poinsettia

I think the paint may still be a little wet but Im rushing to get this posted as the weeks are flying by.

I started this canvas by laying on some texture, in this case through a stencil.  Then I gesso and when that is dry I start my painting. 

I am still enjoying this Poinsettia in it's little pot but I think it's almost time to plant it into the garden.  If Im lucky it will grow all year long and give me colour again.