An Artist's Quest

craft

Making LOVE (it’s not what you think)

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Love note we made at the first monthly meeting of Open Heart Studio troop #1. Laminated and with strings ready to put anonymously into the world to promote love and peace one person at a time!

I’ve been thinking a lot about the uncivil discourse in our country and the world that seems to be filling our newspapers, our social media, and our inboxes.  But we all know in reality we are more alike than different, we want to give and receive love, we want our family and friends to be safe, happy and whole.  You know that’s about it really when you come down to it, and I think almost everyone could agree to that.  So what has been rolling around in my mind is how to get that message out? I decided showing love and building community through art is what I know so last week I launched this-

OPEN HEART STUDIO troop #1Promoting civil discourse one LOVE letter at a time.

This is what I sent out to my local friends:

Mission:  To reveal our common humanity via Random Acts of Love, through the vehicle of art.  No politics, no religion, just a common need to receive and give love.

What: Make a love collage on one side of a 4×6 card, write a simple note such as “YOU ARE LOVED, pass it on”, laminate the card add a string on top  place them randomly and anonymously in the world.  That’s it!

Short Term Goal: To brainstorm the idea with you and make some love notes and send them out in the world.

Long Term Goal:  Meet monthly to make collage cards and set them loose in the world.  Encourage others to start their own OPEN HEART STUDIO troops.

Dreams: To have a mobile Open Heart Studio van filled with collage items and everything needed to make a R.A.L. card…go to scout meetings, schools, churches, synagogs, mosques, town meetings, have a booth at farmers markets, a stand outside of Congress, at the U.N.….oh yeah and achieve world peace!

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Inaugural meeting of Open Heart Studio troop #1 –  thanks to Kate, Sonia and Jack for joining me on a rainy Thursday night to MAKE LOVE happen!

I don’t have a facebook page or a website or any of that right now just an idea and a hope for a more loving, accepting, helpful, peaceful world. I will keep you posted on my progress.  Maybe you want to start your own Open Heart Studio troop. Yours can be troop # 2!

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Time is Racing

Somehow I can’t keep up with my life these days; well that’s not quite true, I’m keeping up but just barely.  Workshops are happening, my work at The Bishop’s Ranch is happening but I feel stuck in quick sand, I’m running but it feels more like slogging.  I keep thinking I’ll get caught up – today is the day – and then the next day is the same. I’ll keep trying – I promised to blog more but bare with me.  I want to keep you in the loop about what I’m up too so….

This weekend I taught this weekend at The Bishop’s Ranch my Winter Creative Workshop. It was all about making art papers and making personal, artful gifts and cards with the stenciled, stamped and sprayed papers, take a peek:

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But wait there’s more! I’m having a Studio Sale December 1st-3rd, here is a preview and a link to details STUDIO SALE… PLEASE COME AND INVITE FRIENDS:

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Still MORE! Commit to your creative self in 2017 come make art with ME! WORKSHOP INFO

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Gotta Love It!

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These are just a few of the items that I can have my paintings printed on!

Hello dear readers as you know I’ve been doing some new paintings lately and with the wonders of the digital age you can have almost anything printed on almost everything.  So I decided to see how these images would look on a myriad of merch.  I uploaded my digital photos of these layered lovelies and look what I got –  I love it!  I ordered the Buddha printed on the tank top for myself- I thought you might love it too… follow this link then click on the painting you like and see it printed on everything from tank tops to phone covers…. really I mean it – check it out!

Redbubble Printing


Wowza – ain’t it amazing

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This is just a sampling of swag that can be printed on- everything from mugs and pillow and all kinds of satchels and totes…. and don’t forget the scarves- I can’t get enough of them!

I’m am still amazed and thrilled at how the internet and digital life have expanded how and where my art can go. So with the idea of sharing that wonder, here is quick post to show you some new designs I have posted to my Spoonflower fabric shop and my Redbubble merchandise shop.Two of my newest design came from photos I took last summer. I met up with my college girl friends for a getaway on Orcas Island in the Pacific Northwest. While there I took tons of up close photos of the beach and tide-pool rocks- I put them together 2 photo montages one is a variety of browns, grays and blacks and the other is a striking black and white design of worn barnacles on a black rock. I love how these look. I have ordered a couple of yards of each from Spoonflower to sew a dress (I think) I promise to post a picture when I finally get it made. I also made a cool pattern from montage of photos from an old abandoned truck I found on a hike on the Ranch back property. Pictured above are several other designs in my collection and some of the swag it can be printed on!  Click through to the links to see, remember to scroll down on the Redbubble site to see all the merch.

REDBUBBLE ooddles of objects : http://www.redbubble.com/people/lisathorpe

SPOONFLOWER fabric by the yard: http://www.spoonflower.com/profiles/lisathorpe


Setting the Table

Black bird- Napkin is spray painted on cotton sateen- machine washed and serger hemmed.

Black bird- Napkin is spray painted on cotton sateen- machine washed and serger hemmed.

As you all probably know if you have been following for awhile I have been spray painting everything I can think of; fabric, wood, paper anything and everything is fair game for my spray paint experiments and I am in love with the results. Now I have a new amazing tool in my toolbox that I have been lusting after for years. For my birthday a while back my husband got me a serger also called an overlock machine. It is what makes a finished edge in most manufactured clothes and can create a rolled hem…for you stitchers out there you know this is an amazing tool. Don’t worry faithful Bernina sewing machine you will always be my first love but the Juki serger can do things you can’t. So now I have combined my obsession with spray paint and the wonder of a machine rolled hem and created these, if I do say so myself, fabulous napkins. I am getting ready for a studio sale in a few weeks and I’m in frantic maker mode. These little beauties with be one of many creative wonders for sale. The sale is November 19th-20th from 3pm-7pm both days. If you are local I hope you will come by and bring some friends. The sale is in my studio at The Bishop’s Ranch directions. For those of you far away I’ll be putting the napkins on my Etsy shop soon (not there yet – no time ugh I need an assistant!) here is a link to that anyway because there is some sweet stuff that will be out to view at my studio too.

In Flight- Napkin is spray painted on cotton sateen- machine washed and serger hemmed.

In Flight- Napkin is spray painted on cotton sateen- machine washed and serger hemmed.

Blue bird in Flight

Blue Bird in Flight

Brown Owl

Brown Owl


Miracles, the Meaning of Life, oh yeah and Pinterest…

Albert Einstein quote, on encaustic collage of spray painted papers plus my newly discovered old idea of embossed aluminum foil.

Albert Einstein quote, on encaustic collage of spray painted papers plus my newly discovered old idea of embossed aluminum foil.

Raise your hand if you love Pinterest….(my hand is up by the way) . If you don’t know what Pinterest is, it is like the idea folder and recipes binder and pattern box you have tried to keep up with all these years- it’s the pages cut out of Sunset magazine and Bon Appetite that you tried to organize but never can keep track of. Pinterest is an idea box without the box, folders and binders all your good ideas are in one place and you can see everyone else’s good ideas too. Usually on Sundays I give myself a little weekend treat and troll through Pinterest for ideas. I find it particularly useful for elementary art teaching ideas. Last Sunday I came across an old art teacher chestnut that I almost dismissed. The idea is to glue down yarn to card board and when it’s dry wrap it in foil then paint with india ink and buff it with steel wool so it looks like tin tooling. I’m going to guess this was published in Sunset magazine in the 70’s because it was all the rage when I was a kid. But the truth is it’s hard to get good results. First it’s hard for anyone least of all young children to make the yarn and glue behave, second the foil rips when buffing and then the whole thing is a mess. But for some reason the idea stuck with me and I decided to try it in a slightly different way. I spray glued leaves to matt board then spray glued the foil over that and rubbed it down. Then instead of using india ink I used my new best friend Design Master spray paint (I swear they are not paying me to mention them- and don’t think I haven’t tried- but I just love this stuff for everything!) any how and then buffed it off with steel wool. Voila! Fantastic results, then I decided to try vinyl letters also to great effect.

Meister Eckhart quote, solar print (see post about solar prints) and embossed foil on encaustic collage

Meister Eckhart quote, solar print (see post about solar prints) and embossed foil on encaustic collage

Ok so you get why Pinterest is in the title but Miracles and the Meaning of Life, where does that come in you say?? Well this one little Sunday Pinterest moment led me to excitedly experiment with a new idea, and once I had my new foil pieces I needed some reason to use them. So I was motivated to work on some collages to incorporate them. And wanting to add meaning to my images I searched for some thoughtful quotes. When I had gathered some of the worlds accumulated wisdoms I spent a meditative afternoon laboriously rubberstamping them on graph paper. In the end I made twelve new mixed media encaustic pieces that I love, made new an old technique and got acquainted with some deep and pithy thoughts from some of the worlds great thinkers, if that isn’t a miracle born of a relaxing Sunday morning drinking coffee and perusing the internet then I don’t know what is! Find yourself a miracle… go on get out there and find one – if you can’t find one then make your own!

Erma Bombeck quote, art papers, leave embossed foil, spray paint.

Erma Bombeck quote, art papers, leave embossed foil, spray paint.

ART SALE: I know most of you live far away but I’m having a Studio Sale to sell these works and others you have seen in this blog on Thursday and Friday November 19-20th from 3-7pm, if you are in the Sonoma County area please come! Directions

ART CLASS: Want to learn some of the techniques I share in this blog? Come to my December 5-6 Winter Creative Retreat and do just that! Register Now

Spay painted papers plus solar print and embossed foil

Spay painted papers plus solar print and embossed foil


A Study in Blue

“Study in Blue” in my Mixed Media Meditation Journal

I’ve been spending more time in what I’ve now dubbed my Mixed Media Mediation Journal. I have found myself drawn into my studio and opening up to wherever the moment takes me. Today as I was cleaning out an art closet I found a pack of Sun Print paper that is probably 15 years old I had it in the throw away pile but thought better of it and gathered some leaves from outside my studio to see if the Sun Print paper still works after all these years – it does! You can see my row of sun prints drying in the art room. What started as a closet cleaning turned into a meditation in blue. I’m usually such an on task person – I don’t allow myself to play until the work is done – but I’m beginning to soften on that ideal – I’ve decided it is best to greet the muse when she presents herself – and today she was all decked out in blue and beckoning, I could not, should not resist!

Sunprints in various stages of development in my studio

Sunprints in various stages of development in my studio

Detail- Sunprint plus drawing and painting

Detail- Sunprint plus drawing and painting

Detail of page - stamped, stenciled, spray paint (of course)

Detail of page – stamped, stenciled, spray paint (of course)!