Saturday, February 27, 2010

A Little Silver....

...a little glass, put together and POOF! you get a lovely pendant. I've been having fun lately with the new beads I've found.
To see what I've been busy doing, check out my blog at Z'annes Bazaar

Ten Top Reasons to Sketch or Draw

1. to slow down and really see the nature of an object, person or landscape

2. to create a habit

3. to practice & improve skills

4. to relax and enjoy a form of meditation

5. to explore different styles

6. to experiment with media

7. to collect ideas for future projects

8. to play with line and color

9. to document travel experiences

10. to capture a moment in time

What makes you want to sketch or draw?

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Woven hearts Beat

Here are a few photos of my woven heart valentine I made for my PAC valentine. I cut 3/8" strips of fabric, than wove them together. I then laid them on a piece of iron-on interfacing and pressed. Then I put a piece of lt wt batting underneath and machine quilted at a diagonal. I cut out a heart shape and satin stitched the edges. Backed with a gold dollie and glued on to a red card. It was really fun to make and I hope my valentines like them! May our woven heARTs beat together for a long time.

Favorites Now and Then

Alone Inside This was the first Textured Lady that I ever did. The concept evolved through time. The inspiration originated from a Calvin Klein Eternity ad.
Shell Vase I don't know why I like this so much. I think it's because I lose myself in it and never get tired of it. This image has been desktop image since I created it.

Rocks in my Head I'm a rock collector and have been since I was in second grade. Those of you who have been to my house have seen them inside and out. LOTS of them. This reminded me of the day I visited a old rockhound in Central Oregon who took us to his strip mine. You could see the veins of rock between layers of ryolite.

A Safer Place This is a fantasy place that just emerged from a pour using lace. It just worked. It has a lot of depth to it and I love the color and texture.

I have always marvelled at which pieces become my favorites and stay with me. I produce a lot of art and there is no way I can show it all in my home. I do like to live with my art but I also like to collect my friend's art too. It seems that no matter how old they get or even how many flaws I have found in them, my favorites seem to stay with me. When we are talking about our own art there can be many different reasons for this. Sometimes it may be how we felt that day, who was with us and what happened on that adventure. It could be the colors or the textures that speak to us.. It could be an object that was dear. It could be what someone said about it. It could be that it got into a juried art show. There are many reasons for why pieces become our favorites. For me it is never because it matches my sofa! LOL
Do you have favorites? Have you have wondered what it was about them that spoke to you?
Above are a few photos of earlier and later work that live in symbiotic harmony with me.
For more on this see my blog, Plethora of Color at

Friday, February 19, 2010

What do you do for Inspiration?

We are starting a new feature in which we ask our members a question for the month. This month's question is "When the well runs dry, what do you do for inspiration?" We hope you find lots of ways to get inspired from these responses!

I step away from my art desk to remove myself from the "pressure" to create and the monkey-mind that says I "should be" creating. Then I go outside and lose myself in physical activity, be it heavy lifting and digging in the garden or a long, fast hike with my dog. I find that getting in touch with my senses (the sounds of bird call, the smell of the soil (mud), the sound of my blood pounding in my ears, the feel of my muscles straining) fills me with renewed joy and a sense of freedom which I then bring back to my art space.


Four things:
1. This is crazy. When I'm stumped, I organize my studio and just
start messing around. Putting things away, going through old scraps and
half done projects gets my juices going for some reason.
2. I keep an inspiration pile handing on one of those clips and it
hangs from a hook near the light switch (no accident there I guess).
These are little clips from magazine, catalogs of colors and things I'd like
to try
3. I make something for someone else, imagining what colors and themes
they like
4. I use my SoulCollage
cards to start
with a color scheme and textural elements. This method always works.


When I'm looking for something to do but my Muse is MIA, I will go to my personal library

and look through some of my books and magazines to get ideas for future projects. If

that doesn't get the job done, I will pull out the pen and paper and Zentangle. Usually

I can get my brain back to a creative zone with just a little meditative doodling.

When I am feeling like I'm in a "creative rut", I grab a cup of tea or glass of wine (a piece or two of dark chocolate is an added bonus) and sink into a comfy chair in the "inspiration corner" of my living room. Soon I'm immersed in ideas in the books from my personal studio library. I usually don't get to sit for long, before inspiration hits and I begin sketching in my art journal. Then I'm off to my studio, sketches in hand, to begin work on a new piece of recycled jewelry or an assemblage.

Jennifer Campbell


I take a long walk in the Pearl or downtown. Walking gets my blood flowing and brain working, and the heart of the city offers so many little textures, patterns, window displays--something always gets me excited. Even if I don't use those things directly in my artwork, they get the juices flowing. And if all else fails, I can stop by Powells for a good browse of art books.


I usually spend a few minutes daily being thankful in advance that the Universe is bringing lots of creative inspiration into my life. Then I begin to see it everywhere . . . online, in my studio, reading magazines, doing crossword puzzles, cleaning out kitchen pantries & cupboards, shopping, listening to music, out on a walk, doing yardwork, watching tv, etc, etc.


I start straightening up my studio and something always drops out that distracts me so I start working. It happens a lot; I have a relatively clean studio (except all the dog hair on the floor). I also always seem to have a pile of half-finished projects that I keep going back to when I don’t have any other ideas.


I go shopping! I love to look in stores like cargo, flutter or any place artfully decorated. Vibrant colors, patterns, antiques or any good art always gets my mind churning with possibilities. A second to that is getting together with other artists and experimenting, gets me in touch with my creative side. I'm so often side tracked with life and work, I need a push and then I'm off and running. And thirdly or maybe 1st... is "the dealine" it is my master and gives me focus and clarity to start and finish. My ADD brain responds well and I do my best work when I know someone will get to see it at a show.


I find browsing through new technique books is always inspiring.


When the well runs dry, I like to look at art magazines like "Cloth, Paper, Scissors," "Artful Blogging," " Art Journaling," or "Somerset Studio."

Another thing that jump starts my creativity is to just play in my Visual Journal. Sometimes if I can just do something simple and just for me, it is enough to move me beyond my stuck point.

I am always excited and encouraged by reading the blogs of other artists. Just knowing that other artists are producing and creating encourages me and gets my creativity flowing again.


I keep a 5x7 notebook just for ideas that I might have seen in magazine, on line, at a gallery or something in nature, it is all put in the notebook with little sketches and small notes to point out what my mind saw or how I can adapt an object I saw into my medium. Or the other thing I do is look at what I thought was a really cool piece of art I made last year and with new skills and more knowledge I try to think of how I could make it better and most often I come up with an idea that is totally new.


Here's my list of ways I get inspired- go on an artist date (visit a gallery exhibit I want to see, look at art books at library or bookstore, take a walk with my camera, sign up for a class); collage in my visual calendar; blog surf on the internet; clean up my workspace to start afresh; browse through books and magazines on my shelf; start collecting supplies to make something on my to do list.


1) Rest—allow the fallow time; turn away from the creative process and pamper myself….knowing that when I am content the creative spirit will re-appear

2) Turn outward for inspiration—talk to friends, read old journals, visit a shop or gallery

3) Lure myself into doing one tiny thing….inevitably transforms into a little bigger effort

I go straight to my visual journal when the well runs dry. I paint and putz and the journal helps me to open up creatively and to keep myself out of my own way!

We'd love to hear your ideas--What do you do for inspiration?

latch hook purses

These purses turned out fantastic. I first learned how to make a pot holder (smile) but soon moved into creating something that I would really use, a purse. I used all different types of
yarns and fibers to give them character.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Heart Art

I have two pieces of heart art on display in Portland this month. Both are collaborations with my art friend, Destree. The first, Into the Abyss, is part of the Duets show at the 100th Monkey Studio.

The second piece, Dark Heart, is part of the 5th Annual Portland Love Show. Stop by either of these shows and take a peek.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Hearts at the Guardino Gallery

Three of our Portland Art Collective members are showing their work at the Guardino Gallery in Portland. "The Heart of the Matter" Show features fabric hearts by Robin Olsen and whimsical wood sculptures by Stephanie Brockway. It's a perfect place to celebrate Valentine's Day and purchase a heart for a loved one.
In the Main Gallery, Gaelyn Lakin shows her fabulous mixed media sculptures. Her dolls demonstrate her attention to detail with creative interpretation in her use of fiber and recycled materials.
Both shows run through February 23rd.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Mary Lou Zeek 100 Artists Show Nourish & Sustain

I highly recommend seeing the 100 Artists Show at the Mary Lou Zeek Gallery in Salem, OR. Each artist was sent a food can to create a piece of art around the theme 'Nourish and Sustain'. Proceeds of the silent auction benefit Marion-Polk Food Share, a local food bank. It's always amazing to me to see how a 100 artists given the same item create very different artwork.

Two of our Portland Art Collective members participated this year. Check out Tory Brokenshire's and Dayna Collin's assemblage pieces.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Creative Habits

Many years ago I was lucky enough to take a workshop from Nick Bantock, author of Griffin and Sabine and many other gorgeous, provocative books. He was kind enough to spend some time talking with me about his background and his process.

One of the habits that stuck with me is this:
Always leave something simple undone. When you go into your studio the next morning it will be easy to know where to start.

If you admire Nick as much as I do you can read more of the interview on my blog and newsletter.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Valentine's Day is coming! Are YOU Ready?

I have been making Valentine's since I was a kid. I love making and giving them as much as I have loved getting them. I thought that I would show you some of the Valentine's I have made in the past year. They are all different and use different mediums. Which do you like best? Check out my blog for more...

What is it about Valentine's that is so mezmorizing?

Do you remember (even in grade school) feeling excited on that day?

Can you remember that special Valentine from a special person in your past?

Wasn't it fun?

Make a Valentine, give a Valentine! Whatever you do make the day SPECIAL!

I hope you get lots!

Yellow Crowned Night Heron Day 6 Tuesday Jan 19, 2010

If I was a cartoonist, I'd have a lot of fun spoofing this large "ave." They sit on branches still as statues, sometimes facing away from all the action in the estuary. Looking grouchy and taciturn, they juveniles try to get a rise out of them and they sort of hunch up their shoulders and retreat deeper inside themselves. Sketching and painting this quirky heron felt like getting inside it a bit. I smile when I see them.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010


My goal this year was to improve and enhance my skills in two dimensional media, working with both drawing and painting. The figure in this collage was drawn in pencil, painted with liquid acrylic to allow the graphite to peek through and then cut out and applied to the collage created on canvas board. I could barely contain my excitement when I found that my collage had been published in the gallery section of Bee Shay's wonderful new book, Collage Lab!

Monday, February 1, 2010

And the Winner is....

Following the very scientific process of putting numbers in a bowl,

I drew #6--Carolyn from Loves Stitching Red as the winner of the heart giveaway. Congratulations Carolyn, you will be receiving the rust colored heart! (Hermila is the winner of the heart giveaway on my blog and will receive the polka dot heart.) If you would both email me your mailing addresses, I will get those off to you.

Thank you to everyone who left a comment about the hearts--I really appreciate hearing from you and finding out what you like! We will be doing more giveaways in the future, so please keep watching for them.

I have been busily playing with Photoshop as I finish up DJ Pettitt's online class. It's easy to become addicted to it. The class was very challenging, but worth it. I ended up learning a lot about masking, layer adjustments, and making my own brushes. I recommend it for anyone who has a little Photoshop background.

This is a composite of about 4 photos I took on my Sunday morning walk downtown:

And this is from the Japanese Garden, blended with several other photos from my archive:

I don't have a clue what I'll do with it, but it is fun.