Saturday, April 30, 2011

Don't Miss Stephanie Brockway's Show

LinkDon't miss Stephanie Brockway's Circus Puppet Theater- Curiosities in Wood at the Guardino Gallery now through May 22nd.
She hand carved these puppets, named them and created stories for each character. She's published all in a book. It's a wonderful exhibit of her artwork.

“Iconography and Beyond”

In the past few weeks I have been working on two new Santos for a show I will be in at The Dalles Art Center. It will run June 1st to the 30th with the opening reception on June 2nd 5 to 7 pm. I will be joined by Natalie Hassell with her Icons and Jerry Fentner’s watercolors. This is a fun show  to see, I hope many of you Portlanders will come up the gorge for “Iconography and Beyond”. I will remind you again in a few weeks (thanks).

There is more on Saturday June 11th I will be teaching a class on how to make a traditional Santos, like the one in the gown. Follow this link to the classes page to learn more  if you would like to sign up. I have a no fail technique so you are all successful in this fun class.

 This is an assemblage Santos
 notice all the different parts.
thanks, Tory
More photos and information on my blog by Tory Brokenshire

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

New assemblage by Jennifer Campbell

Even with the dreary day today, I had to get into my studio. Here are a couple of views of my newest assemblage.

At the beginning of April I went on a 4 day art retreat to Lincoln City, OR with 4 other artists . Of course the retreat included some antiquing! I scored - a whole box of clock parts - most likely from old cuckoo clocks. This piece was created using a vintage camera back, old clock gears and other various parts, a vintage reliquary, and part of a typewriter ribbon tin. The assemblage measures 5"x7".

See my blog for other views and to see the box of treasures I had found!


Sunday, April 24, 2011

Happy Easter to All My Friends!

A little Zentangle bunny for you! Enjoy your day!

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Dayna J. Collins: Fearless Faces Published!

So here's a little story. I received the latest issue of Somerset Studio yesterday and just a little bit ago, I cracked open the cover and read the Letter From the Editor. As I read through Christen's letter and she mentioned the theme for the May/June issue being Fearless, I remembered that I had submitted a few of my Fearless Faces months ago. I immediately thumbed through the magazine and about fell out of my chair: there was a whole page devoted to three of my Fearless Faces. Yikes Almighty! I'm still trembling with excitement.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

April Giveaway - A Laurie Weiss Wine Journal

This soft leather-covered wine journal has a place to record not only winery and wine information, but tasting and food notes and purchase information for 108 wines. It has pockets for preprinted winemaker notes or bottle labels, or any other information you want to tuck in them. It tucks in a pocket or purse so is the perfect size to take with you wine tasting.

Check out Laurie's Black Dog Studio website Here for more of her beautiful journals. Comment on this post to enter your name in the hat to win this popular wine journal. Good luck!

Chena Hot Springs- Alaska

I took this photo in the Ice Museum while in Alaska.

Chena Hot Springs

Ice Museum in Alaska

Friday, April 15, 2011

Question of the Month--Sound or Silence?

Our question this month is "Do you prefer to create in silence or with music, TV or other sound?"


When I create I like to listen to passionate music. I prefer Jazz, Classical or New Age as there are no lyrics. If I listen to lyrics I tend to sing and then I am splitting my brain between the two creative mediums.

Often I am torn between wanting to create and wanting to read. So I also like to listen to books on tape when I create. I feel less quilty doing two things at once!


Sometimes I like silence, other times music. For general work when I'm moving around the studio a lot, I usually put on Sirius Radio, either the Coffee House (Jason Mraz, Dave Matthews kind of stuff) or the Reggae station. Pleasant and mellow and doesn't interfere with my thinking. I have an odd habit for painting though. I listen to the same music over and over without change. This year it's the Stones "Rewind" album. Last year it was Pink Floyd's "Wish You Were Here." It's almost like I can't start painting without that particular music. When I was in art school years ago, the Stones "Some Girls" album was released and we listened to that over and over in class. I have a feeling that set up some sort of pattern that still works for me.


Depending upon my mood, I either work in silence or listen to rap. I know, the two are very far apart! If I'm in the mood for music, I put my iPhone onto my speaker base, log in to Pandora Radio, and pull up the Flo Rida station -- instant Rap. Besides Flo, it plays music from The Black Eyes Peas, Eminen, and 50 Cent. The beat of the music gets me moving and oftentimes dancing and always puts me in a creative, flowing frame of mind. Of course, I do create some pretty crazy stuff as a result . . . .


If I have to concentrate, I prefer to work in silence. The silence helps me focus and clear my mind of all the sounds that bombard it during a usual day. If I'm doing something repetitive or am sewing, I like to listen to my iPod. It holds an eclectic mix of music from classical to '60's pop (Beatles) to Spanish and French songs to folk music to Jason Mraz. It's great to get lost in the moment creating, listening and humming to favorite tunes.


While I work I don't mind silence or I'll listen to books on tape. Creating art, listening to a great book, and a little chocolate on the side is my kind of heaven on earth.


If I am working in my studio all day long, I will start out listening to music and then at night switch to watching a small TV for a change-up. Though, oftentimes, I crave silence after a long day of music so I will work silently and relish it.

The kind of music I listen to always depends on my mood. If I need to get energized and want to sing along, I might listen to compilations like the Best of Chicago, or the Best of Hall and Oates. Yup, I am totally a 70s girl. Sometimes I will get in a groove with one artist and listen to his/her entire body of work. One favorite memory is having spent days with Joni Mitchell getting ready for our first Portland Art Collective "Open Doors" Art Sale. I had put my 13 CDs in chronological order and went for it. I find that the continuity of the same voice helps me stay in the zone. I have done this with all of my favorites: Joan Armatrading, Indigo Girls, Dar Williams, Elton John, James Taylor, Celine Dion, Shawn Colvin, to name a few.

There are other times when I need some soothing music so I listen to yoga/meditation CDs. And most recently I "discovered" listening to books on tape which I absolutely love when I am working on collages. Needing to follow the story gets me down to my studio every free moment!


Silence or sound...well, it depends on what sort of creating I am doing.

When I paint murals or large canvases I prefer to listen to Il Divo .

If it's found object jewelry that I'm working on - I'll be in my garage studio (preferably on a warm sunny day) with only silences and possibly a few meows during a visit from the neighbor's cat.

To get the creative juices flowing, a jolt from Slumdog Millionaire (Jai Ho) will do it every time


I have to have music going. I love jazz, rock, classical and easy listening. It depends what I am doing for what type of music. If I want to get something done I listen to fast rock and roll and dance music. I might even dance around a bit to get the blood going. If I have some time Sunday morning before anyone gets up I put on Classical music to stay calm and enjoy the quiet with a cup of tea while I sew. I like to listen to the sewing machine so I rarely use my head set when doing that, but if I am working on the computer or journaling I really like the isolation headsets give me. Favorite music lately: Katy Perry and Prince for upbeat music, Brandon Chandler for bluesy music, Glee songs-some of the arrangements are very fun. The best thing I have(besides my sewing machine) in the studio is my IPod and music on my MAC. Buying music now is a treat. I set up my computer with speakers and that is my stereo...I rarely listen to the radio anymore.


That is a real sensitive area for me. I have music for every mood, from Winterbone new wave, to

elevator classics. I basically like it quiet, no music. It is also difficult for me to be creative when

music is introduced to the art area that I do not like, or is really loud, re heavy metal. After all, it's all about

me! (smile) OK, so I live with it, but it eats away at my creative mind at times.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Seoul South Korea

Photos I took in Seoul South Korea. I like them better in a collage than alone.

Blog Giveaway Winner...

And the winner of Tammy Vail's Victorian Tassel Doll with hand-dyed lace and ribbons is...Linda Lynch! Tammy will be contacting you for your address information and soon you will have a little prezzie delivered to you. Congrats!

Watch for our next blog giveaway announcement in the coming days!

Monday, April 11, 2011

Creativity in my friend's studio in Walla Walla, WA

This is the triptych that Tricia and I created together last year. The narrative describes their lives in Portland and then in Central Oregon on the Deschutes River. The triptych hangs on the front of their house.

Below is a collage I made after deconstructing a piece of art that they have had hanging in their house forever. I used the glass and frame from the original piece and repurposed parts of the original piece in my collage. It hangs in their guest bedroom.

Below is a little wooden box that I covered and then raided Tricia's many boxes of cool beads 'n things for the top!

Below is a wooden box I bought at New Seasons grocery store. The lid is a curved piece of wood veneer. How fun it was to go through her myriad piles and boxes of paper for just the right ones!

After driving the 4 hours to get to her house, I was immediately instructed on how to sew this very nifty binding for a small 4x5 journal. We hit the ground running!

We both realized how lucky we are to have one another to inspire and instruct. We experience so much synergy that every moment is filled with excitement, inspiration and creativity. This includes all our homecooked meals and our walks. Thanks to her husband who fed us throughout the week!

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Small Prayers

Still gray here in Portland, so I needed a burst of color. I had all these scraps sitting around and decided to make small prayer flags out of them. They are about 3x4", just tiny bursts of color on the balcony.

I don't know why it thrills me so much to use up tiny little bits and pieces. A strong frugal thread in me I guess. Lots of these bits were headed for the trash before I came to my senses.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011


I finished this new fiber piece called "Fragile." Many of the fabrics are reclaimed--some vintage linens, some almost rags, but I love the worn history each of them brings. They are held together only with lines of stitching, no backing, to show off their delicate nature.

I love the fringe on the bottom made of chains of funky crochet mixed with torn and knotted organza:

Monday, April 4, 2011

The Cherry Blossoms are finally out!

Cherry Blossoms tend to herald the coming of Spring.  They have finally appeared this year!

Friday, April 1, 2011

Artist Profile--Jennifer Campbell

Our featured artist this month is Jennifer Campbell. Jennifer is our resident organizer who always amazes us with how much she gets done without even flinching. Her organizational skills are essential for keeping track of all the tiny vintage pieces she collects for her wonderful jewelry and art objects.

1. What are the main mediums you use? What do you find satisfying about them?

I love creating found object jewelry pieces from vintage tins and clock and watch gears and watch faces. I started creating my heart pendants (known as Heartwings) 4 years ago. As they progressed over the years I have moved forward from originally attaching pieces with E-6000 to using the microfasteners that I use today.

I’ve always enjoyed creating with recycled items which really works with this Steampunk style (watch gears and parts) which is a combination of Victorian and science fiction (think Sherlock Holmes or Time Machine). Its fun dismantling old pocket watches and clocks. Being able to recycle the movements of unworking timepieces along with combining the microfasteners and watch fasteners and charms is just heaven.

2. If someone were going to get started in those mediums, what suggestions would you give?

Blogs are a great way to keep up with your favorite artists and any classes they may be teaching (either online or in person). I suggest taking a workshop at a local art shop or at an art retreat. Books and magazines, of course, are wonderful for inspiration as well as ideas.

And, just get in and do it! It’s a process to enjoy and make the most of.

3. A perfect art day would look like_________

One of my “artist dates” with myself. Road trip! A visit to an antiques market or flea market accompanied by the music of Il Divo. Making fabulous finds on this treasure hunt, and having fun negotiating with the dealers. A back roads drive (maybe through wine country) on the way home, stopping in a little town for lunch at a cafĂ© the locals frequent (beer and wood-fired pizza). A few stops on the road back at antiques shops and a cup of tea when I arrive home along with creating a Soul Collage card to honor the day I’ve had.

4. Do you have dedicated studio space? Give a brief description of where you work.

My main studio space is my garage. My vintage tins are on shelves where I can see them and be inspired by the graphics and colors. I don’t mind creating a mess out there and many months of the year I can leave the garage door open to bring in the fresh air and sunshine (especially in the summer).

Another space I use is my dining room table. I have an armoire where I keep the “art supplies of the moment” and my favorite books that inspire me (vintage jewelry assemblage and Steampunk).

My other favorite space is my inspiration space which is my living room.

I’ll sit with a cup of tea and have a view of the canals of Venice (the mural I painted on the wall), my newly landscaped front yard, my favorite books right there – fabulous!

5. Favorite place you've visited or lived?

My favorite place I’ve visited is Venice, Italy. I love to wander the streets along the canals, not caring if I get “lost”. I mean, really, how far can one get lost there. Venturing into a tiny shop and talking with the proprietor who has owned the shop for 50 years, coming upon a fantastic museum, eating a gelato, an espresso at 4pm and dinner at a local restaurant where you are an “old friend” by the time you’ve been there only twice. Nate Berkus says to “live wherever in the world you want to be”. And my home reminds me of Italy.

6. What inspires you (or are there recurring themes in your work)?

I’m inspired by my treasure hunts through antique shops or flea markets (whether here or in Europe). I never know what will strike as inspiration. I’m very inspired by the fabulous women artists of Portland Art Collective. I love being part of this tribe! I think a recurring theme is “vintage”, creating something from items with a history to create an item looking for a new history.

A favorite antique market in Venice:

7. I still struggle with_______________

Giving myself time with ME. What with working with my organizing clients in my business, The Art of Organizing, and building my creativity coaching business, Life in Colour Creative Life Coaching, I have to make sure to put myself on the calendar. The time I take for reflection, meditation and play and seeing my friends is priceless.

8. I'd be lost without__________

My belief in the Law of Attraction and the power of the Universe…and

my artist friends in the Portland Art Collective, they are so inspiring to me and I treasure any and all time I get to spend with them. And, of course, my friends of many years, as well as my sister and cousin.

9. Favorite dessert?

I adore freshly-made cannoli (especially the ones you can get in a little bakery in Boston’s North End). And anything chocolate.

10. What's on the horizon?

Building my creativity coaching business, Life in Colour Creative Life Coaching (oh…did I mention that again?) I’m having a fabulous time coming up with creativity exercises that will move my clients forward with their creativity.

In April I will be training to become a Soul Collage Facilitator, so be on the lookout for my upcoming Soul Collage workshops!

I’ll also be working on my Etsy store so I can sell my found-object jewelry online. Currently my assemblage art and found object jewelry can be seen at Schafer Studios in Beaverton, OR ( and at Rock Your World Gallery ( new gallery in Lincoln City – 1423 NW Hwy 101 – 97367).

And on my plate right this minute is having my yard landscaped to create my own little inspiration space in the front yard, complete with a fire pit, the sound of water and gorgeous plants to combine with found object art.

See more of Jennifer's artwork on her blog.

Jennifer Campbell CPC

Life in Colour Creative Life Coaching

The Art of Organizing

"Working with you to create an organized life"