Sparrow1

J.J. said that “…freedom’s just another word for nothin’ left to lose…”

To me freedom means that I can choose live (and love) unconditionally…some would say that’s not possible, maybe it’s not for some, but it is a great goal and I believe I am getting stronger and better at it everyday. 🙂

If I live unconditionally that means that no matter what is happening around me I will not allow it to steal my joy. My joy is not dependent on my circumstances. I can always reach for the thought that feels best to me in the moment and choose to stay the course, choosing one good feeling thought that leads to another good feeling thought; then I gather momentum with the good feeling thoughts, and then those thoughts actually turn to good feelings. (keep reading you will see my explanation below)

What I have been discovering is that when I keep that series of good thoughts going (momentum), then I keep the series of good feelings going as well and as a result it becomes easier and easier to ride that wave no matter what comes my way.

When I can find joy in the smallest things, it is then easier to pull out of a downward spiral; it doesn’t have to be something big to lift me into joy. I know that every time we think a thought that is good or happy or a thought of appreciation, then my brain (and yours) is creating chemicals that make me/us feel good, happy and appreciative. I also know that if I think a judgmental, bad, or negative thought that my brain makes chemicals that get me feeling that way too. The judgmental, negative thoughts are self destructive and that is why we want to be filled with compassion, love and joy because we want to, not only love ourselves, but love others as well and this is what the world needs most.

So knowing this is very empowering and knowing that we can train our minds and grow new neurological connections, moulding our mind, to be uplifting, loving and creative reminds me that we were given power, love and a sound mind.

It feels so good to love and encourage others and it costs nothing; don’t you agree?

This little painting is of a sparrow (another awesome symbol) in flight.
I have always loved birds and to hear them sing gives me such a sense of freedom and because of this I often listen to tracks of just birds signing while I’m painting…I’m as free as a bird 🙂 You can go to the link below to hear what I listen to.

Please click on my Vimeo account with that little icon in the bottom right hand corner; I would be so thankful if you commented and shared on there too because even though many have seen this video, it isn’t showing that on Vimeo. 🙂

Freedom, love and respect to you.

 

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Hello, What’s New? It’s Good to See You!


Well hello, what’s new with you? It’s good to see you here! I am looking forward to hearing from you. I am seeking to hear back from you, in the comments, please share at least 1 thing that you are grateful for in your life right now.

 Let me tell you a short story. Years ago when I was a single mom I worked two jobs and was raising two children on my own with no financial support. One day we were invited to some friends house to dinner and someone said to me “Something must be suffering in your life.” He was talking about the fact that I had to work two jobs, raise my girls, and take care of our home, our finances, our bills, our health, our food preparation and so on, by myself, and he was so right, something was suffering. I could not handle it all so very well, not so very efficiently but what I did was handled the most important things first. I made sure my girls knew that they were loved, I made sure that I spent time with them and that when I was working, they were well taken care of. I made sure that we had food on the table and that we were not sick. I did the very best that I could do at the time.

 The reason that I am telling this snippet of a story is because I have let this blog slide a bit by not posting often and, to me, that means that I have let you down as well. I apologize for doing that and I promise that I have made a commitment to write something or share a photo or two on here every week. I am committing to being here, not trying to do it all at once, to share something that I believe will be of benefit to you. I am here for you. I may be sharing a quote, a short and sweet word, a photo of what’s happening in my life or something else that I find inspiring or a video link. This blog is now going to be a place where you can feel a little or a big lift.

 I intend to speak (write) as I do to my own family, to share love, helpful information that will inspire you, health information that will boost you and of course my artwork painted with love.

 YOU are special, you are worthy, you are enough, you are important.

 Today`s photo that I am sharing is of the Hibiscus plant flowering in my dad`s atrium…what a joy to see these flowers in the middle of winter like this. Plants are very healing to us in many ways; living in a climate where it gets pretty cold and white, I like to visit some of the greenhouses here and spend sometime with the plants, it lifts the heart for sure. So try it, even if you are not in a winter wonderland you will notice the benefit of plants by getting to a place where they are in abundance. If you are in the city, visit a greenhouse, a florist or even the local store where they sell cut flowers…and do what the song says …stop and smell the roses, (Oh my this is a song from my childhood…see how powerful our words are? They affect us for years.) 🙂

hibiscus

Wallpaper Paintings


As long as I can remember I have absolutely loved different types of papers, textures, cards and books. When I was younger I would spend as much time as I was able to inside the store looking at and touching all of the greeting cards. While I was attending Art College one of my favorite places to be was in the college’s art supply/bookstore selecting out art supplies. They had sample books with paper samples in it; that was just something that I liked doing. Another favorite place for me is the hardware stores, I know funny…but the smell of wood just catches me in a nostalgic way and I could linger strolling through a hardware store forever. They also have samples of paint and wallpaper…oh my wallpaper is so rich. I don’t really like wallpapered walls, but wallpaper itself is fun to experiment and play with; when I say play I mean to collage with it or paint on it. I have a few rolls of different types of wallpaper that I have been collecting over the years and finally decided today that I would like to paint on pieces to see what effects I can get. Of course one of my favorite subjects to paint is the human face. I plan on painting many quick sketches on pieces of this beautiful textured wallpaper and then after it is dry my plan is to mount select ones onto these walnut framed panels that I have. I have a feeling this project might take some time but I think it is well worth it. The photo of the painting below is my first “Wallpaper Lady” which I did today.
I painted it in oils and my colors are Titanium White, Raw Umber, and a touch of Phthaloe Blue in some areas. The subject is from an old black and white (sepia colored) photograph by Julia Margaret Cameron from the 1800’s

Vintage Wall Flower

Commissioned


I’ve heard many artists say that they “don’t like commissions” but for me, it has become a huge welcome. A commission is not just money in the bank, it is an awesome opportunity to connect with people, it is also a chance to be challenged to create something that someone else wants. I love the interaction with people and am blessed to have requests for commission paintings.
I took photographs of the stages from this commissioned portrait because, for me, that is such an exciting part of what I do. I absolutely love seeing the painting emerge from the canvas. I also am posting a photo of my limited palette.

I’m looking forward to helping you own your commissioned portrait of a milestone in your life or as a celebration of the ones you love.

Enjoy 🙂 thanks for always being here!

Lara

palette

stage 1

stage 2

stage 3

stage 4

stage 5

stage 6

stage 7

Pink Ink


Pink is a colour that I have lots of fun creating with and associate with so many joyful and positive things such as, believe it or not, serenity (although I know most people think of blue or purple for serenity); love; babies :D; beauty; softness; happiness; health and life in general. So it is understandable that I chose Pink Ink as the name for my latest adventure at “Society 6”!

Yes, I am venturing into this online store and having so much fun putting some of my creations in prints and on items such as tote bags and pillows. It takes significant time to work on a piece, upload, size, and price it but then VOILA! It’s a terrific way for many to get original artwork to grace their homes or to give as gifts, either in a print or on a canvas or some other useful item.

I feel so humbled by all of your love and support over the years and I wanted to thank you by making my artwork available to anyone and everyone!

Have fun going to the site and sharing it with your family and friends! I hope you will like what you see and will offer me suggestions about other things you would like to see my artwork on!

Thank you again and I look forward to serving you and sharing our love of all things pink! (And blue and green and yellow … )
Please click on the link to see it.

https://society6.com/pinkink

Pink Lady line drawing5829

Scars With a Purpose


Scars With a Purpose

We attract to ourselves the people, things and experiences that we are drawn to. I know it seems cliche to say this, but I don’t know how else to explain it. I had seen a portrait of a Nuer man on a friend’s Facebook page. I’ve seen him share this photo before and I found it to be so stunning. As a photographer and painter of portraits, it drew me in, the intensity of this portrait and the light was so stunning. I made a comment that I wanted to paint that portrait, my friend was more than happy about that. I searched the internet to see if it was a copyright image and I couldn’t find the source. I did paint it and of course posted the painting on my Facebook page. When all was said and done I discovered the source/photographer of the portrait. The very day that I had spoken to my sister about it, she asked me if I had given him credit, I was feeling apprehensive because when I painted it I had no idea who it belonged to. Then he (the photographer) sent me a message, he is kind to say the least, I did include his link on my post of the painting but in case you don’t see it there, here is the website of this photographer; all I can say is WOW his work is so amazing. http://www.mario-gerth.de/ I am certain that you will like his work.

Here is the information about the significance of the scars.
The pattern of the scarification takes the form of 6 lines across the forehead. They are given to a youth as an initiation into manhood and each stands for a code of behaviour that the youth is supposed to perfect as a man. Line 1: You are no longer a boy. You are now a man and should not entangle yourself with childish things. Line 2: You are now a man, you are to fear no one and are now independent of your parents. Line 3: You must participate in the defense of the public without fear of death, and you must take care of your household with as much vigour as you would take in the defense of the public. You must not steal, or take part in any scandalous activities. Line 4: You must exercise honour and dignity; being especially careful to not eat at inappropriate places and times. Line 5: You are never to be gluttonous, or covetous. Line 6: You are never to commit adultery, especially with the wife of a man near of kin to you, or to have sexual relations with a girl that is related to you, in particular those that have some sort of blood relation to you. To do so is a violation of the incest taboo and will result in disgrace and death.

A Record of Life Captured on Canvas.



Painting


…the experience
…the effort
…the time
…the growth
…the beauty
…the heart
…the love
all of these treasured elements and much more are the priceless attributes that form the finished piece of art.


I have been working on this 24″ x 24″ oil painting for several weeks, to be fair some of that time was inner work and not the actual applying paint to the canvas, some of the time was invested in recording and editing to create this video, some of the time (3 days) was spent creating and setting up the still life and of course time is also invested in developing this blog.


Someone asked me once “Why paint a still life?” The best explanation is this, when painting from a photograph the subject is no longer in a three dimensional space, the camera has done most of the work for you. When painting from life, one sharpens the creative skills needed in order to capture life onto a canvas, that is why I value painting from life. I love these challenges, in addition conquering the challenge of bringing life onto a two dimensional plain to be preserved forever, that is what I find so satisfying.


That is why my paintings are invaluable, they are an investment of my life, a part of me…what is that worth to me? It is priceless!

LINK: Painting and a Teacup


Click on the ‘Painting and a Teacup’ BLUE link.

Painting and a Teacup