Outside The Box

As you all know, I’m just in the beginning of this re-dedication to the basics of my drawing and sketching, but I’ve already found out at least one super-important thing:

I need to step outside my usual, go-to ideas and ways.

It seems I have a formula to not only my approach to art, but in subject-matter, style… everything. There has recently been a familiar, run-of-the-mill-ness – dare I say a stagnant? – approach.   And result.

Now, I’m not saying it’s bad or wrong, nor will I abandon it completely because sometimes it’s what I’m feeling at that moment.  What I am saying for sure though, is that it’s time for me to push the boundaries and try new things. And if I don’t, can we say:  b-o-r-i-n-g?!

Which brings me to today’s sketch of the week.

My list (that I referred to in the last post) suggested a skull & crossbones. (What?!) Interesting. Definitely not something I’d have considered in the past. In fact, in the past I probably would have skipped over this idea and gone onto the next, more “me” idea.  But not today!

So I did a little searching for ideas and I found one that jumped out at me.

Now, keep in mind this is just the beginning of this & there’s a lot left to do. But I wanted so share because it is so out of the ordinary for me – and quite frankly, I think it’s a good start.

Skull with Snake

Definitely a skull. No crossbones.

Funny thing, too – I actually feel kind of excited about this one – and that hasn’t happened for a long time. Could it be that after a bunch of years I’ve finally decided to break out of my previous “normal” and, in doing so, might actually stretch my art muscles?!

Who knows where this will lead? (hint: I certainly don’t! hahaha!)

Thanks for stopping by!


Finding my creativity

I set up a table in a good spot in the house for sketching – good lighting, plenty of space, comfy chair, cat in another room (if you have a cat, you know that’s pretty important…)

I got out my sketch book & graphite drawing pencils.

I took out the sketches ideas list. You know the one. That list like that one your high school teacher had – the homework theme that they write on the board on Friday, that’s due on Wednesday, that not only keeps you creating but also gives you ideas to pull from later for more finished works. Yeah, just like that one.

I picked my first assignment – “Draw a pair of old shoes” – easy choice, it was #1 on the list.

I even set up some shoes – haphazardly of course, for interest – to give me a visual.

Picked up my pencil of choice, poised it over the paper…

And just sat there.

Staring blankly at the shoes.

And then the paper.

And back at the shoes.

And back at the paper. The new, fresh, spotless, mocking, paper.

Good light, good space, no cat. This should be a perfect spot, but I just wasn’t feeling it. It was like a creative vacuum.

A bit defeated I got up, grabbed the pencils & paper and went to my room and laid on the bed. I put on my headphones and cranked some music (started with Flogging Molly, if you’re wondering).

I just laid there, eyes closed, music distracting my brain (by then it was Good Charlotte, I know this information is very key to the story!) And then it hit me.

All through high school & college, I laid on my bed or floor and sketched. I never had any special table or studio unless I was in a classroom.

I opened my eyes, creativity newly charged – hey – there was even a pair of shoes on the floor! (Kismet? or am I just a little messy?)

Anyway, I grabbed my supplies and I put pencil to sketchbook paper – and guess what?

For the first time in a long time, I started drawing again. Will wonders never cease?

Looks like I found my creative spot!

That’s today’s brilliance! Thanks for stopping by and sharing my journey!

Drawings – beginning stage

Nature’s beautiful colors are really filling in. It’s been especially fun to be out taking photos of flowers in bloom.

Ahhh… color!

And I’ve been slowing going through, editing and adding photos to my “nature” gallery on my imagekind website ( http://www.artbycarol.imagekind.com ) – only a couple have made it so far.

I also shared recently that I started a couple of drawings, so I thought I’d share them at stages.

This is the beginning stage (after about a week or so) – each with the inspiration piece:

splashing horse

splashing horse




Neither is very impressive looking at the moment, I know.

My talent in art has always come easily to me. I think I’ve been taking it for granted, though.

Instead, I want to remember (and relish in) the passion and challenge and pure joy that comes out of pouring heart and soul into my artwork — whether it be drawing, painting or photography.

And that takes patience – something that does NOT come easily to me!

I think it also may seem like this is not a lot of drawing after an entire week or so. Believe me, I get it!

It used to be that I could – and would – knock one of these out every day (and in college, I had to do at least one a day, if not more!)

But art is a process that, to me, isn’t about how fast you can produce or how many pieces you can do in a day –  remember a few sentences ago I said I wanted to relish in this!

Obviously for me, the process is about slowing down, taking my time, and returning to my basic skills.

So, be patient with me, and we’ll see how this goes!

Thanks for stopping by.

Have a great day!

Making progress!

When last we met, I mentioned that I was looking to start drawing or sketching. Well, I have! (yay!)

I started 2 different drawings – and they will be complete drawings not sketches.

Why 2 you ask? It’s just a quirk that I’m sure a lot of artists have. I like to do more than one project at a time, that way I don’t get in a rut and I can return to each piece with fresh eyes and ideas.

One is of a horse and the other is a daisy. I’ll add photos to show you all at some point but it’s too soon in either of them to really note any significant progress. I’m re-learning to slow down and enjoy the process, too!

I haven’t forgotten my photography, either!

Now that Spring is springing here, I’m really enjoying being out shooting photos and adding to my nature portfolio. Truly enjoying it after the long, long, long Winter we had (yes, this self-proclaimed all-seasons lover got tired of Winter!) I must say, I’m especially loving the flowers in bloom!

I’ve even added a few new pieces for sale (yay!) to my imagekind site  — http://www.artbycarol.imagekind.com

Here’s a preview for your viewing pleasure:

click on the website link above or in the right hand column to view framed and to purchase!

click on the website link above or in the right hand column to view any of the images matted and/or framed and to purchase!

I’m also patiently (but not necessarily quietly) waiting to hear from an organization on purchasing some of my photographs for their currently-being-built new building. By reading this, you’re voluntarily sending your good juju (or whatever you want to call it!) that I hear soon just how many they’re going to add into their art collection! Thanks!!!

And if any of you know of a business, college, private collector, etc. (or yourself) that is looking to update their own art collection, please intervene and match-make – thanks for that, too!!

So that’s what’s going on this week. Thanks for stopping by!

Have a great day!

Peace & Love,



Here’s a revelation – I’d like to be freer as both a painter/drawer and photographer. (what in the world does that mean?)

Well, just off the top of my head:

  • More creative.
  • Less critical of my own work.
  • Un-motivated by the pursuit of perfection.

Is that last one even possible?

As I endure the self-inflicted turmoil in editing recent photographs and the apparent horrifying decision on what to draw/sketch next, I realize that what is stopping me is the belief that whatever I do has to somehow be “perfect”… and I don’t even really know what that is! (artists can be so dramatic, right?!)

No one knows better than an artist that art is subjective – what is beautiful (or perfect) to me can be absolutely abhorrent to another. Or worse – the artwork has no resulting opinion and is considered mediocre at best. (that is heartbreaking)

And you’d think with this amazing reflection and realization, I’d be less stuck — it’s a process. (silly artists!)

Oh, don’t get me wrong, I’ll keep striving for perfection (again, silly artists!) because let’s face it, no one wants to see a poorly taken, haphazardly or over-edited photograph being touted as great (they aren’t).

But at least now I can remain aware of all of this as I create. (so I’ve got that going for me!)

So back I go to the drawing board. Literally!! hehehe! (ok, I admit, being able to use a cliché in the literal sense is kinda fun!)

And one of these days you’ll even get to see some new work. In the meantime, don’t hesitate to check out my Imagekind site and follow me on Facebook!

Thanks for stopping by!

Have a great day!

Stay on the bike

Life sure does feel like a balancing act, doesn’t it?

And I know it’s not just me, but some days are a lot more work balancing than others!

Like me as an artist, for example. Some days it’s all about the art, other days it’s about the business of it all, but most days it’s a mix of both.

I’m not asking for it to be completely easy, I like challenges ~ but on days like today I’d really, really, really like to know what “easy” feels like!


I guess that’s the key… just keep moving.

Have a great Wednesday!

ps: Yes, the artwork used for the poster above is my own, in case you were wondering…