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Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Have a Heart!

Happy Valentine's Day

Saturday I had a great time painting with 16 kiddos at Cartmell elementary in Carrollton, KY.

We painted an abstract heart.
They and I had a great time!

Here's a short video of our class.

Some of these kiddos have painted with me many times and some had never painted before.

 Painting Abstract Hearts

 They all started with a heart at the center,
but that's where the similarity ended.

 They gave lots of thought to their paintings.


 Here's me and my posse!
Are they just the greatest bunch of kiddos!

It takes a lot of brushes for 16 people to paint
all those hearts!

All clean and ready to go to bed!

If you would like to host your own party
click HERE for all the info. 

I can come to your venue for children or adults.
These classes are also a great team building exercise.

Hopefully in a month or so I will have my own venue for things like group classes, art camps and private lessons.  

Stay tuned! 

Monday, February 13, 2017

We Have Nothing To Fear . . . Motivation Monday

Fear
And The Roll it Plays

What is FEAR?
Does FEAR play a roll in our lives?
Why are we Fearful?

I hate being afraid.

Fear brings on physical changes in us.
It can manifest itself as:
nausea
shakiness
pale skin
flushed skin
feeling faint
heart palpitations
sweating
cold and clammy
biting fingernails
chewing on lips
hair pulling or twisting
stuttering
crying

and I'm sure there are many other physical cues we have when we are afraid.

Sometimes we are afraid of the unknown,
and sometimes we are afraid because of past experiences.

I am terrified of dogs.
I've been mauled twice and when I see a dog,
my heart starts to race,
it's hard to breath,
I shake
and I've been told I get real pale.

I had a German shepherd rip me off my bike when I was about 13, tore my pants, bent my wheel and flattened both my tires.  I don't remember how I got away, but bike riding was never the same again.

I always love it when people say something stupid like
"well just don't be afraid".
My first thought always is, "well as soon as I find that fear button I'll be sure to turn it off".

Where is the fear button and how can we turn it off?

I don't know!

I have a brave little granddaughter, 
(ok, she's not little anymore) 
Who was afraid of everything as a wee little one.
She was afraid of noise, bugs, people, animals, even the wind.
Then at age 4 she decided 
"she was too old to be afraid of everything".
She found her fear button and turned it off.
Not for everything, but for the completely illogical fears she had, she was able to figure out how to turn it off.

 I think there is such a thing as "healthy fear".
Otherwise, every little boy would be broken all the time from big wheel and bicycle dare devil tricks, and they would never make it past 17 after they got a drivers license.
Fear is good, just as in all things, in moderation.

But what about those fears that keep us from doing great things and becoming the people we really can become?

Mastering our fear can be a lifetime pursuit.

I'm sure you've heard coaches interviews where they talk about a player who has lost his confidence.
He shoots 10 3's or free throws and misses them all.
It starts to play in his head.
What if I miss again?
I don't want to miss on national TV!
I don't want to run laps if I miss!
My team needs me not to miss!
There are scouts here and I can't miss!

What happens?
More misses!

We enter an art competition or request to enter a gallery
and we are rejected.
 What happens to our confidence?

We try for a promotion at work and are told no.
Confidence goes out the window.

Fear rushes in!

So should we not reach for those goals,
on the slight chance we might not make it
and then we'll be disappointed.

Absolutely NOT!

We should try for all sorts of goals, 
recognizing from the outset, we won't make them all.
We might be picked last.
We might not be picked at all.

It's hard to keep our confidence up when we feel fear or rejection, but it is part of our purpose of life.
To become our very best selves,
not our mediocre selves who didn't give it a go.

On the other side of fear is courage and victory.
But we will have to get through the fear to reach 
the exhilaration of success!

 This painting was the first real figure painting I've ever done.
I started painting figures during a 30 paintings in 30 days
challenge hosted by artist Leslie Saeta.
The point of the challenge is to get in your studio and paint every day for 30 days AND to blog about it.
So here I was trying to learn to paint a new genre' I'd never painted before and to tell the world about it.
Believe me, FEAR crept in.

I have a friend, fellow artist Meredith Adler, who writes a blog titled, "Paint Like Nobody's Watching".
Click HERE to see her blog.
I love the title of her blog, because when you first start to do something of a creative nature and put it out there for the public to view, it can be terrifying.
But you just have to Paint Like Nobody's Watching.
Like nobody cares.
Like you don't care what anyone thinks!


I've gathered up a collection of quotes about conquering fear I'd like to share with you. 

·        The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.  FDR

·        Inaction breeds doubt and fear. Action breeds confidence and courage. If you want to conquer fear, do not sit home and think about it. Go out and get busy.
Dale Carnegie

·        Nothing in life is to be feared, it is only to be understood. Now is the time to understand more, so that we may fear less. Marie Curie.

·        I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear.
Nelson Mandela

·        "Have no fear of perfection - you'll never reach it." - Salvador Dali

·        "Fear defeats more people than any other one thing in the world." - Ralph Waldo Emerson

·        Courage is knowing what not to fear. - Plato –

·        Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear, not absence of fear. - Mark Twain

·        'Expose yourself to your deepest fear; after that, fear has no power, and the fear of freedom shrinks and vanishes. You are free.'  Jim Morrison

·        The cave you fear to enter holds the treasure that you seek.” –Joseph Campbell.

·         'The greatest mistake you can make in life is to be continually fearing you will make one.   Elbert Hubbard

·      'The oldest and strongest emotion of mankind is fear, and the oldest and strongest kind of fear is fear of the unknownH.P. Lovecraft 

·        I have learned over the years that when one's mind is made up, this diminishes fear; knowing what must be done does away with fear.” -- Rosa Parks

·     He who fears being conquered is sure of defeat.”    Napoleon Bonaparte

Now get out there and go for your dreams,
learn to paint,
learn to quilt,
learn to sing,
learn to dance,
sign up for a class,
go for a promotion,
start that business,

Push FEAR out of your heart, your head and your life.

Have a great week and thanks for stopping by today.
 

 

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Snowman In The Moonlight

Gifted and Talented Kiddos
Paint a Snowman.

Saturday I was invited back to Cartmell Elementary
in Carrollton, KY
to teach two classes of gifted and talented kids 
to paint this fun snowman.

The goal of a painting like this is to learn about perspective,
highlights and shadows, form and mixing paint.

I had two classes with a total of 13 students
and I did a short video of each class.

I know, I'm holding the camera wrong in this one.
Forgive me!


Many of the students in this class have painted with me in the past.  We always have a great time painting together.


I am seldom in the photos with the classes I teach,
but I had a great mom volunteer to take this pic.
Thanks Crystal!
Didn't they do a great job?!?

(The videographer did a much better job on this one)

Some of these great students have painted with me in the past and some were brand new.
Students in the two classes ranged in age from 1st through 5th grades. 

This group was the youngest of the students
and I think they did a super job.
Don't you!

One thing to remember when teaching children to paint, is to teach the concepts and then let them paint.
We don't need to stand over them and guide their hands or make too many corrections.
As long as they understand what they're doing and why they're doing it, 
Mission Accomplished 
in my book.

If they need help on a skill, I will help, but just so they know how to do it, but not enough to make their painting look just like mine.

The one area in this painting where students needed the most help was in painting the moon.
But for the most part, I showed them how to achieve the round moon and they went right at it.
Most adults would be scared to death to put that yellow/white paint on that blue/purple sky.
That's one of the things I love about teaching children.
They will give it a shot without a lot of drama or fear
where adults struggle with confidence.

On their super Saturdays they do math and science projects and classes, as well as classes in the arts,
and a lot of fun stuff.

Thanks Pam for providing a fun and interesting program for these great ladies and gentlemen.

I had a ball.

If you would like to host a party for your posse,
your kids, your co-workers or your team,
click HERE to get the scoop on it. 

 Have a great day and thanks for stopping by.

Thank you for sharing this post with anyone
 you think might be interested. 

Monday, January 30, 2017

A Time For Every Season - Motivation Monday

Turn! Turn! Turn!

 
A Blast From The Past
actually the 60's and The Byrds!

 Click HERE to listen to one of my all time favorite songs.

I'm a Baby Boomer,
so I am also a child of the 60's
and this was one of my favorite songs.

I had a 45 of it and just about wore it out on  my turn table
I played it so much.

I didn't realize until later it comes word for word,
right from the Old Testament of the Bible,
Ecclesiastes 3:1-8.


 Click HERE to get the scoop on this

It is also very true.
There is a season for everything
and there are seasons in our lives.

Childhood
Teenage years
Young Adulthood
Parenthood
Grand parenthood
Old age

 In each season are things that are generic to that particular time in our life.

Children want to be teenagers,
teenagers want to be adults,
    but each needs to be what they are when they are.

Once a teenager is a teenager,
it's too late to go back and be a child,
(even though sometimes they act like children)
As adults, we can't go back and be teenagers,
no matter how much 
"we can't adult today!"

 Click HERE for info on "Hog Wild"

In those seasons we should enjoy where we are
and realize that today might not be the right time to 
be able to do something, no matter how badly we want to.

Sometimes we make wrong or poor choices in a particular season
that changes choices we can make in later seasons.

Parents of young children, regardless of the age of the parents,
will find it might be the best they can do to work and take care of of those children.  Following a particular desire may or may not be possible at that time.  

But life has many seasons, and many choices in those seasons,
and we shouldn't feel depressed or discouraged if right now is not the best time to "go for it".

If there's something in the back of your mind you've always wanted to learn or to try, but now is not the optimum time,
start eating that elephant in a small way now,
and you will be surprised how much further down that road you will be when time, motivation or money is less of a problem.
Start reading about your subject,
listen to podcasts about it,
watch videos of it,
find experts in that field and watch them,
(without stalking)
learn what you can learn now
and if it's something you really have a passion for,
you will be surprised at the time you can find for it. 

I always new there was an artist inside of me,
but because my husband and I didn't really prepare well to provide for our family,
I always put those needs ahead of my wants.
But, I learned what I could in whatever moments I could find.
We had 4 teenagers at once,
so those years were full of craziness.
And just as the last child was getting ready to graduate from high school I was diagnosed with scleroderma and was on oxygen for 5 years.
Not part of my plan!
But, I still had that desire to learn to paint,
so even though I had lungs that looked like deflated balloons
and the stamina of an infant,
I began to learn to paint.

My learning curve resemble 
"The Long and Winding Road"
but after a year of painting for short amounts of time daily,
I began to see results.

If painting is something you'd like to learn,
I can help make your learning curve shorter and 
for you to see results in months and not years.

Click HERE to check out my online beginning painting class or course.  

And finally,
I give away a painting every month and I'd love for you to get in on the fun.

 
I'll give this away on the 31st of January!
 
I'll be drawing a name out of the followers of this blog tomorrow.
So you still have time to get your name in the virtual hat.
If you didn't sign up on that annoying pop up box,
scroll back up to the top right hand side and enter your email in the box on the right that says 
"Subscribe to my blog".
Next, you'll receive an email confirming you did actually sign up.
You must click on the link in that email to actually subscribe.
When I draw out the winner I'll send you an email with
"No Joke!  YOU Won! in the subject line.
You'll have 24 hours to get back to me with your actual address so I can send you the painting.
I move on and draw another name after 24 hours.
So, make sure you use an email address you actually use. 
 
And with that,
I'm done for today.
 
Thanks for hanging out with me today. 

 

About Me

My photo
Ghent, Kentucky, United States
I'm a nature artist and I love to paint old barns, rivers and lakes, trees and fence rows. I work almost daily trying to improve my art and all that entails. I try to learn all I can from others and from the earth itself by being aware of all God has created and its beauty. You can purchase paintings by contacting me at slgraves6@gmail.com. You can also purchase through my gallery website at www.riverrungallery.com . Thank you so much for stopping by.