Colour in with me - The Madonna

Colour in with me.  Journal page entry on The Madonna.

Dressing as Art

If you love to paint yourself as a picture via your dress... you may like to view Advanced Style...

Wandering around the Arts Centre Gold Coast

Wandering around the The Sculpture Walk at the Arts Centre at the Gold Coast, I was contemplating the nature of transformation and what that means to me. 

As I was thinking about transformation, and how I would define it, I happened upon this sculpture. 

Every side is fascinating.  Is the person transforming into the wisdom of the owl or emerging from the tree?

Or emerging into human from owl?

ah the patience of the person who created this work. 

I imagined the sculptor gradually chipping away and smoothing off...

rough edges...
did the figure emerge from the stone? 

Or was there a plan to start?  Did the plan evolve? 
Oh the questions that went through my mind and still are.

I invite you to imagine sitting on the seat below,
and reflect on the statue and contemplate transformation. 
Feeling the slightly rough edge to the stone with your hand and allow the stone to hold your weight as you rest from your walk. 

As soon as I find out the sculptor's name I'll pop it in here. 
Images taken at The Sculpture Walk at The Arts Centre Gold Coast
I imagine we are all transforming each day
as we grow and move into different stages of our lives. 
What about you?
What do you imagine and believe about transformation?
Are there areas in your life that you would like to transform? 
Have you been through a transformation? 

Halloween Art Matchbox

Image prior to completion (I don't want to spoil all the surprise).

Warlocks, Witches, Bats and Goblins... muuuurrrggaghahhhha.  A whisper of a cold draft on your skin, a dark shadow crossing your path, and you'll be wondering, is it All Hallows Eve yet? 

It's been a fun swap at Milliande this month.  Halloween is the theme and this creepy little box has now been sent off to the USA.  The spider is a little beaded treat that I made and it lurks inside.

So many stories abound about Halloween and how it came into being. 

Trick or Treat

I've read that trick or treating came from and old English tradition of beggars knocking at the door and asking for a 'soul cake'.  They promised to pray for the dead of the house in return for the cake.  Here's an excerpt from one article you might find interesting...

Soul cakes, a form of shortbread — and sometimes quite fancy, with currants for eyes — became more important for the beggars than prayers for the dead, it is said. Florence Berger tells in her Cooking for Christ a legend of a zealous cook who vowed she would invent soul cakes to remind them of eternity at every bite. So she cut a hole in the middle and dropped it in hot fat, and lo — a doughnut. Circle that it is, it suggests the never-ending of eternity. Truth or legend, it serves a good purpose at Halloween.

A Halloween Art Therapy Activity - Art Therapy Blog has a great art therapy for Halloween article if you'd like to read it... here's an excerpt

The most consistent origin, and probably the most well-known, refers to Halloween as a way to honor the dead. It also signifies the end of summer and the end of the Celtic year…and the beginnings of a new one.
People were very superstitious back in the day and thus arose the idea that souls of the dead frolicked the streets at night. To keep the bad spirits at bay, treats were left outside to pacify the evil spirits. This led to how it works now, otherwise known as trick or treating.

To participate in the art therapy exercise go to:

Jason deCaires Taylor Underwater Sculpture - real people can't live underwater

I love being a member at Milliande community... today I was visiting a member's blog at
where I found a link to Jason deCaires Taylor's underwater sculptures...

View more of the amazing underwater sculptures at:

You tube links:
Real people can't live underwater...

Blog hopping... Obvious to you, amazing to others

I came across Kristin Dudish's wonderful blog when her little heart painting attracted my attention on Rita's also wonderful blog after seeing a painting of Rita's that had attracted my attention on Milliande's wonderful community 

Anway... where was I... back at Kristin's blog... when I came across this gorgeous video that Kristin had... and I wanted to share it too, but for some reason my blogger doesn't want me to post it...

Now this may be obvious to you and if it is please let me know what I'm doing wrong so I can share it here.. but if you click on the link below you can watch it anyway... I loved this video by Derek Sivers - Obvious to you, amazing to others.

<iframe src="" width="400" height="225" frameborder="0" webkitAllowFullScreen allowFullScreen></iframe><p><a href=" to you. Amazing to others.</a> from <a href=" Sivers</a> on <a href=">

Benefits of Art Therapy

At sometime or another we all can experience feelings of anxiety or depression.  As Dr James says 'we all need to manage it and get on with our lives'.  If you enjoy reading about how art can help... you may like the following interview with psychotherapist Dr Chris James at

Art therapy is a very simple process of separating the thinking mind from the observing mind. When we think thoughts, they’re usually fleeting thoughts and we don’t give them a great deal of consideration. Very often we act on those inappropriately.
When we think about our thoughts, then we paint a picture in our mind. Now most people don’t use the observing mind…they don’t need to on a daily basis. But artists do because if artists didn’t use the observing mind, they wouldn’t be able to paint a picture.
So, it makes a very good form of therapy for people who are experiencing mental health problems.
Read more:

Say things with colour and shapes

I found I could say things with colour and shapes that I couldn't say            any other way - things I had no words for.  Georgia O'Keeffe

Mama and Baby Koala in our backyard today...

Too cute - look what we saw in our backyard today - a tiny, tiny baby and not so big mama koala. 
Bit hard to tell how little they both were in this.

The Arts Centre Gold Coast

Outside the Arts Centre on The Gold Coast - how gorgeous is this mosaic by  ____? OK help me out here - I've forgotten, please email me if you know!
Anyone who says you can't see a thought simply doesn't know art.  
- Wynetka Ann Reynolds

The veranda at Lennox by Kareen

The Artist's Creed by Jan Phillips

'You are here to co-create the world - to add  your vision to make visible what is not seen.'

Link to the Artist's Creed by Jan Phillips...

You are worth the time

You are worth the time.. a video on why our art, our dance, our singing, whatever your creative practice... is important and worthwhile...

'Your work is worthy of whatever time it takes' - Jan Phillips

Mixed media Green Fairy Collage Acrylic Newspaper

“Dance, when you're broken open. Dance, if you've torn the bandage off. Dance in the middle of the fighting. Dance in your blood. Dance when you're perfectly free.” ― Rumi

Paint, Dance, Play Music, Love, Laugh. 

Green Fairy dancer... mixed media - cut out from magazine, newspaper, sand, acrylic on canvas.
“Inside you there’s an artist you don’t know about… say yes quickly, if you know, if you’ve known it from before the beginning of the universe.”
― Rumi

Weathered backgrounds for art journals

I was about to share a great video from Millande, however, for some reason, my blogger doesn't want to show a video today... I may have used up my quota for the month... however if you click on the link below, you can watch Milliande creating a weathered background for your art journal on you tube...

Click Here

Milliande Art Community - come and play art, photography, art swaps, atc, journals - with us.
Milliande Link

Art Therapy and September 11

"Our sorrows and wounds are healed only,
when we touch them with compassion"

Our thoughts and prayers are with all people whose lives were changed in New York and throughout the world this weekend...

In 2008 an art therapy program was started for September 11 first responders. The tenth anniversary is now here. From September 11-18 there is an exhibition entitled 9/11 Arts: A Decade Later. The exhibition will be open Sept. 11- 18, 2011 at 34 Stuyvesant Street, Barney Building, 1st floor Commons Gallery. The exhibition is free and open to the public. Gallery hours are: Sept 11, noon to 9 p.m.; Sept. 12-17, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.; and Sept. 18, noon to 5 p.m. For more information, visit

Following is an excerpt from an article on how art therapy has been helping people after September 11... to read the full article follow the link...

For some, arts therapy offered a way to heal in the days and years following the September 11th attacks. NY1's Stephanie Simon filed the following report.

Acosta says through private and public grants faculty and graduate students were able to offer 9/11 related arts therapy to hundreds of adults and children over the years. Interestingly, much of the newer art work created focuses not just on grief, but also new emotions surrounding the anniversary and issues of 9/11 related illnesses.

"So we are also focusing on that aspect that that how the people who are not only emotionally and psychologically but also physically dealing with the problems," says Acosta.

The exhibition, which opens September 11, will take place in the first floor gallery located at 34 Stuyvesant Street. In addition to the artwork that will be on view there will also be some interactive components.

Julia Cameron - The Artists Way

A few years ago now I came across The Artist's Way by Julia Cameron. One of the exercises that Julia gives you in the book, is to have an Artist's Date. It has been a fun exercise, and both my husband and I have found a new fun interest that we enjoy doing together. Over the years, we have made it a part of our travels to have an artist date, and while Julia asks us to have an artist's date by ourselves, I have found it also makes a fun date for partners and friends.

Julia has a wealth of teaching to help you access and develop as a creative spirit. If you would like to learn more Julia can be found at:
Julia Cameron

Click here to watch Julia

Our Lady of Divine Presence

This artwork was conceived from a topic that has been a challenge, a teaching, and precious in my life - being focussed in the present moment. As I painted I meditated on the present moment. While I was painting this artwork, I loved how many sayings and quotes turned up in my everyday life that had to do with the present moment. Some of the words were ones that came to me as I painted, some are favourite quotes.

Our Lady of Divine Presence. Some of the words written on the fabric... Your presence is the greatest gift you can give. If you dwell in the past or the future you will miss the moment. Don't let yesterday use up too much of today.

Prints, cards and giclees are available at Fine Art America

Hand Carved Feather Stamp - by Geninne

Stamp Carving from Geninne D. Zlatkis on Vimeo.

I was visiting Geninne's Art Blog this morning and watched this gorgeous feather stamp creation... you can see more of Geninne's art: here

What are you grateful for today?

I spotted this image on Cheryl Richardson's facebook page... it is by Melissa

Black and White Art Challenge

Today's artwork - Today I will be grateful for my many blessings...
I am learning how to paint faces at present, so I have set myself the challenge to paint lots of faces and see what happens, this is my first attempt at a face with eyes open. The text is from The Language of Letting Go by Melodie Beattie.

Idea from a Black and White art prompt challenge by Tam at Willowing - link on the side of this post - you can watch the video below...

Art Exercise from Milliande Community

Here is an art exercise from Milliande Community... it's a fun exercise to do, and fascinating to watch all the variations that other artists create... if you'd like to join click here to go to -

Espresso Yourself

Playing in the art journal - ideas for an artwork

Trees for Life - 2011 International Year of Forests

Trees for Life Exhibition
2011 International Year of Forests

The United Nations General Assembly declared 2011 as the International Year of Forests to raise awareness on sustainable management, conservation and sustainable development of all types of forests.
White Tiger under Tree Image by Kareen Fellows

Through the magic of Twitter and other social media tools, artists from around the world are coming together to create beautiful artworks inspired by their own natural environment. Each signed, original artwork is selling for only £45.

This is a fantastic opportunity to support a great cause and to own an original work of art. Moreover, every artist is very generously donating 100% of the sales to the award winning Scottish charity Trees for Life!

The United Nations declared 2011 International Year of Forests and this year Trees for Life aims to plant its one millionth tree! This would be an amazing achievement and we want to help make this a reality by raising £10 000 through this exhibition.

Trees for Life Exhibition

Before I die I want to...

I loved this image from Candy
Before I Die transforms neglected spaces into constructive ones where we can learn the hopes and aspirations of the people around us. It’s about improving both our physical spaces and our individual well-being. This process (including obtaining official approval from many entities) has been a great lesson – more on that later. If you’re in New Orleans, stop by the corner of Marigny and Burgundy (900 Marigny Street) to add your thoughts to the wall and discover what matters most to your neighbors.
To read the rest of this article visit Candy

What do you want to achieve before you die?

Make Art Not War - success for people with PTSD

Make Art not War

After carrying guns in combat, soldiers who return from Afghanistan and Iraq with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) would do well to grab paintbrushes and pencils. A new study has found that art therapy can help alleviate psychological traumas that come from the horrors of war.

While art therapy as a PTSD treatment has been examined before, no studies have previously investigated its effects on soldiers who participated in military operations in Afghanistan and Iraq. “According to a 2008 report from Veterans Affairs Canada, 10 per cent of Canadian soldiers who’ve been exposed to war zones develop chronic post-traumatic stress disorder,” says Cheryl Miller, who completed her study as part of her master’s thesis in Concordia’s Department of Creative Arts Therapies.

Miller conducted her research at a government-operated veterans’ hospital. Art therapy was offered to PTSD-affected soldiers twice per week in group sessions, as a conduit to externalize recurring sentiments of fear, shame and anger. “Through art, participants were able to express positive feelings, externalize difficult emotions and gain insight into their PTSD symptoms,” says Miller. “Art-making fostered discussion and allowed veterans to show empathy for one another.”

Veterans who took part in the study were 28 to 56 years in age and suffered problems such as insomnia, nightmares, anxiety, hypervigilance, depression, suicidal thoughts, isolation, chronic pain and interpersonal problems. “All participants had served in the Canadian Forces and experienced various types of trauma,” Miller explains.

Participants made use of an array of art materials: paints, markers, charcoal, clay, Plasticine and images for collage. “They produced artworks based on themes such as anger versus tolerance, grief and loss versus new beginnings,” says Miller. “The aim was to give participants an opportunity to express their emotions and to explore their hopes and goals for the future.”

After each session, behaviour observation forms were completed by therapists and nurses. “All staff members noted how art therapy seemed to have a positive impact on participants,” says Miller.

Group dynamics were found to be a major strength of the study. “Through the process of creating and discussing art with peers, participants were able to open up and express important thoughts and emotions in an atmosphere of mutual support,” Miller says, noting groups appeared to be particularly useful in addressing issues of avoidance: loss of interest in pleasurable activities, feelings of detachment and a foreshortened sense of the future.

“Art therapy can engage the creative potential of individuals — especially those suffering from PTSD,” says Miller’s supervisor, Josée Leclerc, a professor in the Department of Creative Arts Therapies. “Art therapy is considered a mind-body intervention that can influence physiological and psychological symptoms. The experience of expressing oneself creatively can reawaken positive emotions and address symptoms of emotional numbing in individuals with PTSD.”

Miller has presented her findings at several conferences, including the 2010 meeting of the International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies. What’s more, the program she developed for this study has become a permanent treatment component at the hospital where it was tested.

With a high number of soldiers who return with PTSD following tours of duty in Afghanistan and Iraq, Miller stresses, creative treatment solutions must be explored. “Individuals with PTSD often have difficulty verbalizing their feelings,” she says. “Art therapy can complement other types of treatment for PTSD because it provides an alternative to verbal expression. Art therapy groups can provide opportunities for peer bonding and appear to reawaken positive emotions in participants.”

Source: Concordia University

Emergency Fair Dinkum

Emergency Fairdinkum by our lovely friend Leanne Prussing - has been announced as a finalist in the Sulman Prize...
NSW Art Gallery - Sulman Prize

I want to touch people with my art

I want to touch people with my art. I want them to say 'he feels deeply, he feels tenderly.'- Vincent van Gogh

Flowering Plum Tree 1887
View Vincent's work at the Vincent Van Gogh Gallery online - click here.

A sincere artist

Art image of Wangi Girl by William Dobell taken by John Woudstra found at The Age

'A sincere artist is not one who makes a faithful attempt to put on to canvas what is in front of him, but one who tries to create something which is, in itself, a living thing'. William Dobell

A sincere artist

'A sincere artist is not one who makes a faithful attempt to put on to canvas what is in front of him, but one who tries to create something which is, in itself, a living thing'. William Dobell

Long Shadows

This is an artwork called Long Shadows by Anneke Silver, I attended a workshop with Anneke last year, if she is in your neighbourhood, jump at the chance to learn from her.
Click here to visit Anneke