A Month in the Life… Back on Track

An enhanced ability to visualize and empathize, and hyper-sensitivity are the blessings and the bane of the artistic personality.

I have never had children of my own, so I really can’t imagine the hell that the families in Newtown are going through, but when Mark called and told me what had happened Friday, I felt as though I had been punched in the solar plexus, and knocked further off my tracks than anytime since 9/11.

I was quite literally speechless, and when I have nothing meaningful to say, I just stay in silence.

You may have been as surprised as I was to learn that this is the 40th school shooting since Columbine.

That is not tolerable, and we need to fix it. I am not a gun person and I think some things have to happen there, but I think the other important element here is to focus on our mental health systems so these boys can be helped before it comes to this. You have probably read the post written by the mother of another young boy who could easily take this path. If you have not, you should . . .

I Am Adam Lanza’s Mother

She is not Adam’s mother, of course, but she can see that possibility in her future, and the help she needs is not available.

I am never quite sure what we, as individuals, can do. I feel so powerless at times like these. But at least there is conversation now and perhaps we can make that lead to some lasting change. I hope so.

Blue Birdies of Happiness . . .

I had to do something that felt positive during my mostly  silent and reflective time this weekend. So, I created some earrings using little bird charms that remind me of my signature bird.

They are made of sterling silver ear wires and beads, Swarovski crystals, and bright, shiny plated birdie charms. They come in a choice of six crystal colors.

I put them in my Gift Gallery here and in the real gallery too.

I got carried away and made some very cool packaging for them too . . .

Lesson Learned:

If you want to stamp images on gift boxes, you will probably find that the middle of the image does not stamp, because there is no support benaeth the middle of the cover.

I cut rectangles of cardboard that fit inside the cover and stacked them up until they were taller than the depth of the cover. I taped them together into a block and set the cover on top. The image stamped perfectly.

You stampers probably knew all that already, but I didn’t.

I think this stamp came from Hero Arts.

The Birdies are Here

Yes I can Priority Mail by tomorrow.

An Exciting New Workshop for 2013 . . .

Inktense – From Soup to Nuts

Inktense are the wonderful dye based water soluble pencils by Derwent.

I started using them in my art journal in 2006 when they first came out. I am a color junkie, so I fell in love right off the bat with their brilliant hues.

And lots of other things about them pleased me – like the fact that they became waterproof after being wet and dried.

And we found out they worked great with Sheer Heaven transfers.

It was a lot to love, but I kept experimenting.

For almost 40 years I have been in search of a way to get my high color watercolor paintings onto canvas, with no success. Last Summer, while fooling around, I found how Inktense could be that vehicle. It sent my love affair over the top.

And I haven’t even talked about fabric and wood . . . and then they came out with color blocks!

So, when deciding on an exciting real world (non-digital) workshop to offer next year, I decided on Inktense – I could share the love.

This will be a long and light workshop. That means the lessons will be easier to digest, but there will be more of them – 12 Lessons/12 Weeks.

The first session will be live in an online classroom, so I can perfect the workshop with your feedback, and we can all share. It will run from:

January 15 – April 5, 2013

I have also lowered the tuition by $10 through the rest of 2012 – an early bird special for you.

The description page is here:

Inktense – From Soup to Nuts

If you do not have any Inktense Pencils or Blocks, Dick Blick has a new Selective Set at 45% off. 22 Pencils, 10 Blocks, and some accessories.

Here’s the link to give to Santa:

Inktense Selective Set

I have lots to do and I better go do it!


14 thoughts on “A Month in the Life… Back on Track

  1. linda g
    December 18, 2012 at 4:46 pm

    I’ll be passing on to a few others the info about the Inktense class….I have a few friends who are also in love….
    also, another way of stamping on the box lids….Ink your stamp, turn it inked side up on a table and then press the lid down onto it. that way you can finger press the lid center to make sure it hits the stamp surface.

    Love the birdie earrings….they deserve a nice box!

  2. Elaine Gongora
    December 18, 2012 at 5:22 pm

    Beautiful packaging Jessica. I love the birds too.

  3. December 18, 2012 at 5:35 pm

    Oh geez, Linda – of course! Sometimes, the old brain just doesn’t go that extra inch!

  4. Mary Darling
    December 18, 2012 at 7:14 pm

    I just bought the set. Have a question about Shipping and Handling cost for Jessica and then will order the class. Can’t wait.


  5. Marilyn
    December 18, 2012 at 7:50 pm

    How quickly we slide past the pain first in your post and into the jewelry and workshop…I think that we need to change the entire culture of the country from the fear based attitude that leads to violence as the proper response to when we are hurt. And from the idea that life should be easy and we are unfairly treated when it is not. Etc, etc. I was relieved when I read that one of the parents said he did not want the schools to be turned into fortresses and that even having police in the schools and gun control would not prevent these all happenings. Such actions give us a totally false sense of security, drives the fear response even deeper into the community and totally ignores the social actions we need to make the world a different place where help is available and love is rampant. .

  6. Peggy Schroder
    December 18, 2012 at 8:15 pm

    I’m in Jessica…can’t wait and I think I have almost everything on hand!

  7. December 18, 2012 at 9:48 pm

    Marilyn – What a beautiful response. I so agree. We have, as a country, been so fear based since 9/11 that we are not seeing straight. Goodness abounds and can prevail,

  8. December 18, 2012 at 9:49 pm

    Mary, there should be no shipping and handling on the workshop. I better go in and make sure the right boxes are checked!

  9. December 18, 2012 at 9:55 pm

    OK – the wrong box was checked. There is NO shipping on the workshop and the Shopping Cart knows that now!

  10. Cathy in AZ
    December 19, 2012 at 9:07 am

    Marilyn, I concur with you.

    Jessica, I just love these little birds.

  11. Andrea Stewart
    December 19, 2012 at 11:45 am

    I so love that I can say my best friend all through school is such a wonderful artist. I have absolutely no craftiness in my body so I love looking at yours. Congrats!

  12. December 19, 2012 at 12:04 pm

    Thanks, Andrea! How sweet of you to say. I’m glad we found each other again.

  13. Jeanne
    December 20, 2012 at 6:11 pm

    jessica, I am very excited about this class and VERY excited about getting some good water color pencils at long last. However, I do not have any Inktense pencils, and not all the colors in the Derwent Selection Set are that attractive to me. But would you still recommend the set because they’re basic colors that we’ll be using, or should I choose colors from the open stock? Thanks for your guidance!


  14. jessica
    December 20, 2012 at 7:36 pm

    Go right ahead and choose the colors you like, Jeanne. I only suggest the selection set because it is a good price for a starter set of both pencils and blocks. Do make sure to get the Outliner Pencil though. It comes in all the sets 24 and up, but if you buy eaches of everything, do get that one.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Heads up! You are attempting to upload an invalid image. If saved, this image will not display with your comment.