Sunday, November 28, 2010

Indie Spotting for the Holidays

Looking to buy handmade for your Christmas gifts this year?  You HAVE to check out IndieSpotting.  It's so much more than just a blog!!  On this site, you will find great gift guides for any holiday, "how to" items you can create for yourself or give as gifts, featured artists with links to their shops & other artist shop links off to the right of the website.  (You'll have to check out my new avatar that I created myself, under Our Sponsors - it's also the new header for my blog.)  I actually had hired someone else to create an avatar for me, (since I really wasn't comfortable in doing that myself) & after several attempts at contacting the person to see how they were coming along & never getting a response, I decided to make an attempt at doing it myself!

My shop is featured in their "handmade holidays" section on their IndieSpotting website site & on their sister site An Indie Christmas under their "handmade holidays gifts" section.

If you're looking to support artists, creating handmade unique items & wanting to stay out of the "big box" retail stores, this is a great place to start!!

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Who is that artist?

First of all, grandmas can be SO awesome!! My grandma Elizabeth, is one of them!! I was VERY fortunate to grow up with my grandma & grandpa living right next door. I have noticed throughout the years that I have acquired some of her values, personality traits & "quirky ways" (which I'm very proud to possess!)

It was that same grandma that saved these creations of mine while I was growing up.  We came across these little treasures when we moved her from her big 6 bedroom house of 60 years into a 1 bedroom apartment.  This first one as you'll see in the picture, was done in 1974 (I was 5 years old).

The potholders (remember the little looms we all made those looped potholders on), I was 10 years old. (I still love weaving today.)  At least I had an eye for color in the brown one, not so sure about the other one though :) I remember making TONS of these!!  It was so touching to see that grandma had saved these ALL THESE YEARS!!

One of the many things my family did right was to expose me to some type of art since I was 4 years old (I was put into dance classes & didn't stop that until age 16).  I was encouraged to draw, to paint, to dance (music was in the house at all times) we went to musicals, I was in art fairs, anything that involved the arts, we were encouraged to participate..  I remember taking art & music classes all through K-12.  (Then a college degree in Fiber Art.)

(Time to get on my soap box here) This summer, I went to an Art Fair in Leavenworth, Washington & I had the opportunity to visit with one of the jewelers.  He explained to me that 20% of all of the sales of this art fair, which was every weekend for two months, went to local schools so it could help them have an art program, which was one hour once a week.  ONE HOUR, ONCE A WEEK?  That broke my heart!  Apparently, (I didn't know this, since I don't have children) but with budget cuts, in the schools, the Arts are the first to go?  That saddens me. Children should all have the opportunity of being exposed to the Arts, encouraged to create & to only get one hour a week to do this?  I just hope families are encouraging their children to create at home since they can't get that at school anymore.  
(Ok, I'm down off the soapbox, now)  :)

I am VERY grateful & thankful that my family encouraged me, while growing up, to be creative!!!  Maybe some day, those pieces above will be worth something, lol!!