Tuesday, December 31, 2013

A New Year

Wishing you a New Year of health, prosperity, opportunities and hope! 

To start my year off creatively, I've taken a couple of challenges for myself to keep my art juices flowing. 

First, I'm participating in the January 2014 "30 Paintings in 30 Days" Challenge, hosted by Leslie Saeta at Slices of Life. The challenge to myself is to finish as many paintings as possible. I have some nearly finished or backgrounds-started canvases I want to get completed, as  well as some fun ideas for new paintings. 

And I'm also participating in Creative Jump Start 2014. Many instructors with many techniques. I'm excited to get started. You can check it out here: 

There's nothing like a good challenge for the new year! 

Happy New Year, Everyone! 

Monday, December 30, 2013


I couldn't resist showing this as a New Years Resolution. Nothing better than a glass of good wine. I love Story People!  
From Story People

Disclaimer: Please drink in moderation and do not drive a vehicle after consuming wine. 

Thursday, December 26, 2013


Wishing you health, peace and joy in the coming year. 
Miniature 3x3 inch mixed media canvas
by Helen Campbell
It's been a busy week:
wrapping up and tearing down the Holiday Festival booth
Celebrating Christmas eve and Christmas with my husband and son
Appointments with son today and
Working on fitting the leftovers from the booth somewhere "logical" in my studio, so those not destined for my Etsy shop will be organized for the next sale.

Wishing all my Paint Party Friday friends a Happy New Year! We'll see you on the flip side!

Friday, December 20, 2013

For Tracey

Sharing a virtual cup of tea with Tracey Fletcher King, an amazing artist and strong woman with a fabulous sense of humor who I met through Paint Party Friday. This wonderful lady is beating breast cancer with her strength and humorous look at life. 

Tipping my teacup to you, beautiful Tracey! You are an inspiration!

Thursday, December 19, 2013


"If your dreams don't scare you, they aren't big enough." 
Dream Swallow Ornament by Helen Campbell

I'd like to offer a challenge to address the following questions: 

1) Do you have a BIG dream? One you are willing to say out loud?

2) What are you doing RIGHT NOW to make it happen? 

3) What are you doing RIGHT NOW that is holding you back from your dream?

My answers this moment are: 

1) Yes! Being recognized and supporting myself as a nature artist and photographer.

2) a. Selling at the 2013 Holiday Festival of the Arts and researching additional live venues for 2014. 
b. Selling my art and photography on Etsy (I also have a vintage Etsy shop) and figuring out how to SELL my work on FineArtAmerica, society6.  
c. Making time to make art! 

3) Procrastinating by spending unproductive time on the internet. 

How about you?  Are you willing to share your dreams out loud? I'd love to hear them if so. :)

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

What's in my Studio

I was surprised this past week with a package from members of atcsforall.com. I'm one of the moderators on the site, and these wonderful folks have been secretly collecting little cards and gifts from a whole lot of the members to thank us for being there. Isn't it fun? Thank you to all the members who sent goodies! You made my month!
If you like trading mail art of all types, check atcsforall out. We're a friendly place to visit.

This week for WOYWW, I'm sharing a bit from my office/studio/mailing center, which is at the other end of the house from the "studio". This is the laptop command center, with a view (that you can't see) of the evergreen outside the window that houses a suet feeder. Many little birds come and visit me daily. I love it!
That pile next to the laptop are books that are in the process of being listed in my Vintage Etsy. They have been photographed and just need me to finish the listings so they can be posted.  You can see my open computer glasses case, and a couple of bottles and some caliper thingies that will also be listed. I can't remember why I had the double sided tape out. The cord is for the camera. Oh, and there's a tiny 2x2 collage canvas there too next to the books.
Once I have the books listed, they will be stored on the shelves in the back bedroom, which has become the Etsy storage and photography room. I actually have two sets of shelves, this is the smaller one.
Etsy books storage shelf
And this pile is some of the old sheet music I bought at the recent Friends of the Library Book sale. (That's where a lot of the book pile came from too! I love libratry book sales!) Most of the music is in very poor condition, so I'm listing them in my Etsy shop as ephemera. I did keep a pile for my art too. :)

Apropos of nothing... does anyone know how to get more hours in the day? :)

Sharing with What's on Your Workdesk Wednesday and  Artist Studio Day.

Sunday, December 15, 2013

On my book stand - The Icarus Deception

On my book stand - and recommended reading for artists of all types.  The Icarus Deception.  I love a book that makes me think. 

A favorite quote from the book: 
"The art of moving forward lies in understanding what to leave behind."

From the Village Books (our fabulous local book seller) website: 
"In Seth Godin’s most inspiring book, he challenges readers to find the courage to treat their work as a form of art.

Everyone knows that Icarus’s father made him wings and told him not to fly too close to the sun; he ignored the warning and plunged to his doom. The lesson: Play it safe. Listen to the experts. It was the perfect propaganda for the industrial economy. What boss wouldn’t want employees to believe that obedience and conformity are the keys to success? 

But we tend to forget that Icarus was also warned not to fly too low, because seawater would ruin the lift in his wings. Flying too low is even more dangerous than flying too high, because it feels deceptively safe. 

The safety zone has moved. Conformity no longer leads to comfort. But the good news is that creativity is scarce and more valuable than ever. So is choosing to do something unpredictable and brave: Make art. Being an artist isn’t a genetic disposition or a specific talent. It’s an attitude we can all adopt. It’s a hunger to seize new ground, make connections, and work without a map. If you do those things you’re an artist, no matter what it says on your business card. 

Godin shows us how it’s possible and convinces us why it’s essential."

Saturday, December 14, 2013

A Day in the Life...

It's going to be a Fabulous day! 

Oscar is available at naturegirl22.etsy.com
Really, it is!  Here's why I think so...

1) Cell phone locked up last night while I was at the Handmade Holiday Market (which went okay, I sold some stuff) so a trip to the Verizon kiosk at the mall is in order for this morning. Yay! Don't you just love the malls at Christmas Time? 

2) The copies I left behind Thursday at the copy shop were kindly taken to the Holiday Show for me by a fellow artist, (the copy shop let them go?) however they are not at the Holiday Show and I have no contact information for the kind fellow artist. Hmmmmm... 
So, I apparently didn't need to work on those projects this weekend. Free time!

3) And the errant (now 10 day rather than 2 day) Priority package (with the prints for last nights market and the Holiday Show) left Federal Way Sorting station yesterday afternoon. That’s only 100 miles away! Surely it will arrive today!

I hope you're day is more than fabulous too!  Happy Holidays!

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

What's in my Studio...

This has been a bit of a crazy week, with a few pesky health issues causing some stress. All will be well. However with all that is going on, I have not taken an actual picture of my studio in all it's messy glory. o.O  

I created a few ATC's this weekend for an art a-thon on atcsforall.com. This photo was taken in the studio. Does that count? :)  
I could not get this to scan well, and the photo is pretty lousy, but you kinda of get the idea.

Last weekend we went to the Port of Bellingham Holiday Festival, where the main attraction is the gingerbread house contest. This entry is by my friend Llew. City Sidewalks includes our local arts and craft store.  She got First place in her division. (You can see the blue ribbon to the right)

 This cool church is by another friend, Vonnie, who took second place. Yay for their creativity!

I'm still working on some ornaments, and pins and tiny canvases. My final Holiday show of the season (thank goodness) is this Friday in Fairhaven, from 4:30 - 9:00. So I'm getting a few more goodies ready.

Finally, I wanted to show you my recent painting on display at the Allied Arts Gallery. The open house last Friday was wonderful and I made a couple of new friends while I was there. All the art in this exhibit is under 6 x 6 inches, and in a variety of mediums. Glass work, sculpture, photography, ceramics, mosaics, and paintings.... I worked a shift in the gallery Saturday, so had the opportunity to get a closer look at all the wonderful art.
Low Tide and Autumn Mountain III by Helen Campbell

Hope you're having a wonderful week! 

Sharing with What's on Your Workdesk Wednesday and  Artist Studio Day.

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Low Tide Mixed Media

Low Tide 5x5 mixed media

A small 5 by 5 inch canvas abstract of the low tide in Bellingham Bay. This is as the gel medium attaching the buttons was drying.... you can see bits of white, but ignore them and pretend it is dry. :)

This piece will be on display at the Allied Arts Petite Four Show starting Friday Dec 6th at 6:00 pm.

Totally spaced getting a "finished" photo, as I was getting several things ready for several destinations all at the same time. (This time of year is crazy busy for this artist). I hope to get a picture at the open house tomorrow night.

I thought I'd show you the photo this is loosely based upon. This is my first attempt at painting water. I definitely need to practice more!
I'll keep working on getting a painting the way I envision it in my mind. Perhaps larger canvas next rendition... :)

What are you all working on? For inspiration, check out the Paint Party Friday artists!

Linking with Paint Party Friday hosted by Eva and Kristin, and 
Artist Showcase hosted by Robin at TheSmartestArtist.

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

What's in my Studio this week...

This week I've actually been working on paintings! Yay! 

An almost finished mixed media canvas destined for the Petite Fours Miniature Art Show at Allied Arts.  The show starts this Friday, Dec 6, and goes through Dec 19th. If you're in the area, I hope you have a chance to visit the gallery at 1418 Cornwall Ave in Bellingham. 
Low Tide 5x5 mixed media canvas WIP

You can see the molding paste and soft gloss gel containers, which are sort of holding up the pictures I'm using as reference. These are photos I've taken on various adventures around our area. I also have a gazillion buttons and you can set the tin and two jars in the background if you look closely. And lace! I found this lace at a garage sale last summer. It's mid-century french lace, a very cool find! 

And just because the WOYWW folks love seeing bits of the mess, here's a shot of the closet.It actually doesn't look too bad. I have things stored (mostly) in clear plastic tubs I got at Costco, so I can see what I have at a glance. Alas, not everything is in the containers yet. Some is still in boxes and needs to be transferred. One of these days, I'll get it all finished and organized. I will. Really. :)

Have a wonderful week! Check back on Friday for a view of some of the new paintings. 

Sharing with What's on Your Workdesk Wednesday and  Artist Studio Day.

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Free Printables - Handmade Labels

I just wanted to share these cool Free Fillable Handmade Printable Labels from www.EverythingEtsy.com.

This site has a lot of cool information, tutorials and free printables. Check 'em out!

Friday, November 29, 2013

Holiday Stress...

Too much, too much, too much. 

We don't need to have so much. We don't need to do so much. 

Relax. Rest. Rejuvenate. 

Solstice Snow 5x5 Mixed Media
From my Archives

By the way, if you're out shopping this busy weekend, shop local! 

Linking with Paint Party Friday hosted by Eva and Kristin, and 
Artist Showcase hosted by Robin at TheSmartestArtist.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

What's in my studio...

A peek at the mess especially for my WOYWW friends... :)
The piling station for in progress work that I'm going to get to one of the these days... The shelves are full of journals, some done, some not. Some of the old maps I use in my art are there too. Stuff. 

My Big Kick with dies and a pile of in progress paintings in the background. 

And the first layer of molding paste and string on a 5x5 canvas... I'm working on this one again tomorrow. I really am! I plan to have it ready for the Petit Fours Miniature Art Show submission next week. I'll share the progress on Friday. 

I'm continuing to work on things for the Holiday Festival of the Arts which continues until Dec 24th. Restock items for things that have sold and I don't have enough to replace. Cool, actually. :)
Also I'm prepping for the evening art sale on Dec 13th. As well as the Petit Fours show next week. Will the work ever be done? I'm feeling exhausted tonight.

However, I'll be fresh and ready to go in the morning. I'll check in with folks then!

Sharing with What's on Your Workdesk Wednesday and  Artist Studio Day.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Holiday Festivals

Our local Etsy sellers group, Bellingham Etsy Rain, is having it's first Handmade Holiday Market Dec 13th! I'll be there with several other local Etsy artists, offering last minute gift ideas as well as champagne and munchies.  If you're in the area, I hope you stop by! 

Just a reminder, I'm also at the Holiday Festival of the Arts through December 24th. 

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

What's in my Studio..

What's in my studio this week? A messy work area! Oh my! I got started tidying this weekend, but started a few more projects so the mess continues. Ah well!

The Holiday Festival of the Arts booth did get set up, although I'll be rearranging slightly tomorrow. This post shows the initial set up.

I couldn't bring myself to take a picture of the messy work area, so what I'll show you today is the sort of tidy table where I'm finishing up some more matting of prints for the Holiday Festival. I'm also participating in a Handmade Holiday Market with other local Etsy sellers on Dec 13th, so making sure I have enough to tempt buyers.
You can see my trusty ATG gun. I just changed the tape, and need to put a backup refill on my shopping list. Also have some framed ACEO prints showing.

And lest you think I'm not getting any art done, I started these wood watercolor gesso abstract paintings. I'm at the stage where I'm trying to figure out what will appear in the random patterns the watercolor and gesso mix created. These wood pieces were leftover bits from other projects.
4 1/4 x 3 3/4 wood abstract WIP

8 1/2 x 5 1/2 wood abstract WIP

Have a wonderful week!

Sharing with What's on Your Workdesk Wednesday and  Artist Studio Day.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Holiday Festival!

The Holiday Booth is set up and ready for the next six weeks of sales.(YAY!) The Holiday Festival of the Arts runs from Nov 15 through Dec 24th. I'll be busy restocking as I go along. I plan to sell out. :)

Here the booth is all set up ready for goodies. We have a 6 x 3 foot space.The booth next to the Christmas tree was not set up when we were done, so I have no clue how it's going to look yet. It will be blocking out the space behind the tree. 

Here's the stocked booth ready for the first weekend. The lights will be working tomorrow, so we'll go back to make sure things are looking okay. We weren't allowed in today to check things out.  I will also be propping a few things up with the easels I forgot to take when we were setting up. O.o 

More goodies are being priced and will show up over the weekend - pendants, heart ornaments and a few more small canvases. So much to do, so little time! Ha! 

I'm cheating a bit for Paint Party Friday... I didn't actually paint anything new this week, (well, a couple of beginning backgrounds) however I do have paintings up in my booth, and a bunch of prints and cards from my paintings ready for folks to take home with them.  Wish me luck! 

Have a wonderful weekend! 

Linking with Paint Party Friday hosted by Eva and Kristin, and 
Artist Showcase hosted by Robin at TheSmartestArtist.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

What's in my studio...

A quick hi to all the WOYWW folks! I'll be by to see what you're doing late tomorrow or Thursday... I'm still mid-set up of the Holiday Festival booth and busy busy for the next several hours!

This stuff is all priced and ready to go to the Holiday Festival. The booth is all set up, and tomorrow morning I'll go fill it with my wares. If I'd been more organized, I'd have finished pricing before today so I could be done now... but I was not and did not, so that's what I'm doing right now.
Boxes of ornaments and cards

Framed art for the walls

Prints in the process of being framed 

On a side note, this little fella hit the kitchen window rather hard a few days ago. Once I figured out what had made the noise, I was quite concerned. He just lay on his side for a long time and I was afraid he was not going to make it. After awhile he sat himself up and sat here for about an hour. When I went to check on him he startled when I opened the door and flew into a tree in the back yard. Sat there for another hour before he finally flew away. I hope he made it okay.
He's a Northern Pigmy owl, by the way. Only about 6 inches long. Cute as could be.
Northern Pigmy Owl

Sharing with What's on Your Workdesk Wednesday and  Artist Studio Day.

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