Me happily painting in my sister's studio.
During the conversation, she reminded me of the oil paintings I had done as a teen. I'd taken summer art classes at Bucknell University, in Lewisburg, PA, where our Mother worked as a secretary. As a child, I had always loved art and my Mother encouraged all of her kids to draw, paint and make crafts throughout our childhood. But somewhere along the way, for reasons unknown to me, I stopped painting, drawing and creating anything. I know I was told I couldn't be an artist when I grew up, so perhaps that's why I stopped. But my sister reminded me how much fun painting was. She suggested I "just play" with paint on paper and mix some colors to see the stunning results I could get. So I did!
My sister's new Angel painting after I showed her the Julie Prichard style of drip painting. (Julie teaches this method online.)
The result was the beginning of my foray in Mixed Media Art, focusing on acrylic painting with collage. I poured over internet web sites, art blogs and Yahoo art groups; getting tons of ideas of things I wanted to try. I began taking workshops and art classes in San Diego, CA where I live. Unlike my sister, I'm fortunate so many talented artists live here and travel here to teach.
Meanwhile, my sister, Melanee, was stuck in an artistic slump. She hadn't painted anything in ages, except the Angel painting, (shown above), she was finishing up when we reconnected. I went to visit her for my summer vacation in 08/09 and we spent almost everyday painting together in her studio. I showed her what I had learned from taking classes with Chris Cozen, Julie Prichard and Karen O'Brien. She soaked it up like a sponge. Previous to my visit, her style mainly focused on Vintage and she wasn't attracted to bright colors like I was.
Here are some cool Needle Punch Rugs she made:
She had also discovered Mixed Media Art and made this assemblage for a friend of hers to help her after a painful divorce.
But it was the heavily textured, sgrafitto painting style I had learned from Chris Cozen, which really changed the way she thought about color, texture and painting in general.
Look at these!
Melanee and I also had a blast painting Mythical Creatures as taught by Karen O'Brien. Here's what she made during my visit.
So there you see the full circle. She encouraged me to start painting, after being dormant for too many years. I didn't resist, but instead, flourished with her support. So I took a few workshops and taught her some of the techniques I had learned and viola' ... her work is hanging in a gallery, she's sold a few pieces and thrilled and happy to be painting more and more!
Meanwhile, I have applied the spiritual principals of, "The Power of Now," and "The Law of Attraction," to my own life and it's bettered my life more than anything since I got sober, 22 years ago. I would encourage anyone who wants to make some changes in their life to read these books. Changing the way you think, will change your life!
Please click on the links to learn more about the artists I've mentioned. Thanks for visiting!
Please note: ALL of the art work in this posting is the property of my sister, Melanee Herrera. She created ALL of them. None of these are mine. You can easily view my artwork in previous posts.