art is the soul made visible

art is the soul made visible

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

30 Days of Getting Shit Done Revisited

Awhile back I had decided to spend 30 days tackling the various tasks I was procrastinating on doing-I called it “30 Days of Getting Shit Done”.  I didn’t get very far in the 30 days before quitting.  As I sit here with an overwhelming amount of tasks that (still) need to get done -I’m willing to give it another go.  If you have a long list of “to-do’s” as well, then keep reading and consider joining me.

First, let me “out” myself as a very skilled procrastinator.  For me procrastination is part of a stressful, overwhelming pattern.  The pattern goes like this… anxiety over performing a task(s) (or sometimes just being generally anxious) leads to>>> procrastination which leads to>>>the task(s) becomes more unmanageable which means>>>I become even more overwhelmed and anxious about the task(s) which means>>> my general level of anxiety and overwhelm build and spill over into other areas of my life which means >>> life begins to feel very unmanageable and I get stuck in a state of avoidance.  Action is the only antidote to this pattern.  Action is what “30 Days of Getting Shit Done” is about.

So, I made the decision to do this 30 days in the middle of November.  The skilled procrastinator voice in my head said, “You should definitely start this on the 1st day of a month, not the middle.  And you should definitely start on a Monday rather than a Wednesday”.  Tempting, but I know that “NOW!” is the ONLY time to deal with procrastination.  Besides, I want some relief from this stressed, overwhelmed feeling NOW-not on the first of next month.

I will share  how I am doing this 30 days, but feel free to do your 30 days however you wish.

***Instructions for 30 Days of Getting Shit Done***

1.  Make a list of all the tasks that need done that are weighing you down.

  What is weighing you down?  What are you avoiding doing?  Tasks left undone can take up a lot of mental energy and create stress.  Make a list of what needs done for you to free up that mental energy.  For me this is going to be a lot of cleaning and organizing type stuff, but there will also be things like phone calls on my list.  I will be making an exhaustive list, but I am reminding myself that I do NOT need to get all of it done in this 30 days.  Making a thorough list will allow me to see exactly how much needs done and help me to prioritize. I can see where I am at the end of the 30 days and do another 30 days if I want/need to.

2.  Break down tasks into manageable chunks.

I am feeling overwhelmed, so giving myself big overwhelming tasks to do isn’t going to move me into action.  So, I have decided to break tasks down into actions that will take about 15 minutes to do.  For example, I have “clean/organize bathroom closet” on my list.  So, under the task of  the bathroom closet I will have listed “1st shelf”, “2nd shelf”, “3rd shelf”, and “4th shelf”.  Each shelf should take about 15 minutes.  I can manage 15 minutes, but the idea of doing the whole closet in one sitting is overwhelming.  The idea is to  keep the tasks manageable and realistically do-able.

3.  Do one task from the list each day, for the next 30 days.

I can manage 15 minutes of task-tackling each day.  15 minutes is a small amount of time, but over a month it adds up.  If my math is correct that equals 7.5 hours of work done by the end of  the 30 days.  That’s a lot of  time!!  If I were to do that 7.5 hours of work in one (or even over two or three) sittings it would be very hard on me.  Time and energy are limited resources-especially with this autoimmune disease.  I simply can’t do the superwoman thing like I used to.  I used to be very good about staying on top of what needed done, but now I often struggle to take care of the basic tasks of living.   But…I think if I am organized and systematic I can get a lot done in these bite sized chunks of time.


So…what do you think?  Care to join me?  Today my task will be to write my list.  Good luck everybody! xo

Monday, August 10, 2015

Happy Birthday to Me and a Gift for You

(Coloring contest is now closed!)
Hello friends!  Today is my birthday-WooHoo!  I made it to 41 years! Sometimes that feels like a HUGE accomplishment.  Life can be very, very challenging at times.  I have had depression in varying degrees as long as I can remember.  There were many times when I did not think I'd make it this far-and frankly didn't want to. So, for me, 41 years is a big deal!!  I am happy with my life and myself.  I look back on my 41 years and see a lot of learning and growth, and that's kinda what life is all about I think.  I am proud of the person I am and the way I choose to live and be. It might not look like a very impressive life from the outside, but from where I'm's a pretty amazing life. Anyway-I'm looking forward to a quiet day today.  I want to make art and spend the day reflecting on and appreciating the 41 years I've got under my belt. And hopefully take a nap as my good friend "Insomnia" made a visit. But first I have this for you...

I finished my coloring page-yay!  In case you missed it, I am creating a coloring book and have a coloring contest going on.  You can get the details  and your free printable coloring page HERE.  And see the second "kid prize" (which is ridiculously cute) that I am offering HERE.  And I made a printable PDF of my finished mixed media page/painting for you HERE.  Print it out and hang it on your fridge, cut it up into pieces and make a collage, shrink it down and make it into a postcard...use it however you like (just personal use only please).

 How I created my page...
I initially planned to use some regular 'ol crayola crayons and color my page like I did when I was a little kid.  (By the way...I have some fun tips for coloring with crayons and  that I plan to share another time).  When I sat down with my crayons I changed my mind.  I felt pulled to make my page into a painting.  I wanted to challenge myself to take this simple coloring page and get a little more creative with it.  I printed my page onto some lightweight watercolor paper that was not heavily textured (just some cheapie stuff from the Michael's kids art section).  I started with watercolors, adding color to everything but the hand shape (which I painted with gold acrylic paint).  I then deepened some areas of color with colored pencils (I am madly in love with Prismacolor Premier pencils!!)   Initially I thought I would use the circle shapes for written journaling, but ended up simply adding  an "Om" symbol near the bottom of my painting. I added marks around the border with gold and silver markers and outlined some of the shapes with gel pens.  I named it "Hope Grows".   I really love how my painting turned out!!   I hope you enjoy it too whether you print it out or not.  xo

Sunday, August 9, 2015

Facebook Update

Okay, back on FB for now.  I had to prove my identity, which I find ridiculous and infuriating.  I told them so (not that they care).  Anyway, just wanted everyone to know that I'm back on FB.  I will keep the G+ group open in case I have further problems with FB, but don't plan to use it much.  Busy working on painting my sculpture today, so I'd better get back to it!  I hope everyone else is having a great day too!! xo

Thursday, August 6, 2015

UPDATE: Facbook problems (again) and Coloring Page Sneak Peek

Hello friends!  Again I am having problems with FB.  I won't go into it (again) because it's kind of exhausting, so I'll just say that I am no longer on FB.  Unfortunately I recently started a group there that would (in part) serve as a place for readers to share photos, etc.  For example, I was asking everyone to share their colored pages for the coloring contest there.  And now, I have no way to access it.  So, I  created a G+ page for us to share pics, etc. you can find it HERE.  And the event page for the coloring contest is HERE If you haven't read my post about the coloring contest yet you can find it HERE and an update on the post where I offer another prize (a very cute prize I might add) can be found HERE.  Until I find a good place for you guys to share pics... is a sneak peek of my own coloring page.   I will share more about my process when my page is complete.  See you on G+!

Friday, July 31, 2015

Mindfulness Art Journal and a Product Review

Hi guys!  I'm going on  virtually no sleep, so forgive any bad grammar and misspellings.  Anyway....recently my artist friend Amber was kind enough to gift me a set of her groovy printables (yay!)   She did it just 'cuz she's a sweetie.  I had the idea to make something with them and then write a blog post about it.  So...I did not get compensated for this review-the product was a gift because we are friends and the creator had no idea I would choose to review it like this.

I decided to make a quick art journal.  I think making the book and decorating all the pages...whole project was maybe 2 hours.  All my art journaling friends will appreciate how super mega FAST that is!  Before I get started on telling you about the book.  Amber's Etsy shop where she sells her original art, etc can be found HERE and her shop at Scrapbookgraphics (this is where you can buy the kit I am using) is HERE.  Specifically I am using the  Namaste Printable Art Collage Sheet Background and Namaste Printable Mini Art Journal Kit.  You can get both kits for a total of under $6.  So, yeah...just go ahead and get 'em.  You can print them out as many times as you like, so it's a great deal!!

I made my book by using her backgrounds for my pages.  I took two of her background pages which I had printed out and put them together with right sides facing out.  Then I stitched around the edges with my sewing machine.   I left some of the threads hanging long because I like the look.  I repeated until I had all pages ready to bind.  To bind my book I simply used my sewing machine to stitch right down the center of my stack of pages.  I folded in half along the stitch line and then got busy decorating my pages.  Oh...and I used two lengths of ribbon to close the stiched to the front cover and one to the back. Now I'll add a little bit of description to each of the pics.

The pic below is the front cover.  All images are Amber's but the scraps of papers under the girl and under the words.

This spread features a photocopy of a girl from one of my other art journals. I added a spot for journaling on the upper right of the right side.  The "life is unpredictable" card is a project life card.  I decorated it with scraps of pretty paper from Amber's kit.

This page features plenty of my own art.  The eye is a stamp that I carved myself, the OM is a stencil I made and the flower is a stencil I made as well.  I stenciled the flower in black and then doodled over it with paint pens.  And...another Project Life card which has a photocopy of some of my art underneath. I tried to leave some room on most of the pages to do further artwork and written journaling.

This page has some of my favorite elements from her kit.  The scalloped painted edge on the left and the scribbly rainbow come with the kit.  I then added some of her words to a Project Life card along with a photocopy of some of my art.  Lots of room to add to this page, which I love.

This might be my favorite page(s) in the book.  The girl is a photocopy of a work I recently did.  The triangle on her forehead is from the kit as well as the words.  The left page has  a large Project Life card as a fold out "page".  I added a copy of one of my artworks to it.

 I went very simple with the last spread.  I wanted LOTS of room to do art and writing here.  Just a Project Life card and some words from the kit.

Finally...the most important remind of breathe  I used another stencil I made myself and one of my favorite techniques of doodling over my stenciled image.

I hope you like the project and please do check out Amber's shops if you feel moved to do so.  xo

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Update on Coloring Contest (Another Prize!!)

Just a quick post to let you all know that I'm adding a second prize to the coloring contest!  This will be the "kid prize".  After a dear friend's daughter entered I thought, "A painting probably isn't a super fun prize for a kid.  We need something fun for kids".  So...the prize for the winning kid will be one of my matchbox bear sets!! WooHoo!!  These little guys are "famous" (okay using the term very very loosely-lol!)   ...they are featured in the book "Microcrafts" in which I was a contributing author.  I sewed this little guy by hand and even knit him an itsy bitsy blanket!  So...if you have kids in your life be sure to invite them to join the contest!  You can download your printable coloring page HERE.  See contest rules, how to enter,  and the "grown up prize" in the post below. xo
And do check out Microcrafts if you get a chance.  It's a really cool book-and I'm not just saying that because I contributed projects to the book I promise!  Check out Microcrafts now.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Coloring Contest and Bunny's Super Mega Happy Fun Group

(coloring contest is closed!)

Hello friends!  I want to let you know that I'm creating a Facebook group to go along with my blog. It's called Bunny's Super Mega Happy Fun Group.  I will be using the group for all sorts of fun things (stay tuned for future fun!),  a space for us all to share how we use my printables, and lots more. So, I invite you to join me there.

The first fun thing we will do in the group is have a coloring contest!!  I am working on creating a coloring book.  The coloring book is in the (very) early stages, but I couldn't wait to share one of the pages with you.  You can get your FREE copy HERE.  The prize is an original mixed media painting titled "Mermaid at Midnight" (fits nicely in a 5x7 frame, image is slightly larger than 5x7 inches).  Please do download and color your copy even if you don't wish to enter the contest.  Personal use only please!!

Winner gets this original artwork:

* Contest is open to everyone (including international participants).
* To enter you MUST post a photo of my above coloring page which you have colored in my Facebook group Bunny's Super Mega Happy Fun Group  and/or the  G+ event page HERE (use any medium you wish to color it!)   I will check both groups for entries before selecting the winner(s)
* Contest ends August 31, 2015 at midnight
* One winner will be chosen at random to receive the above prize (but you never know...I might end up offering more than one prize if the mood strikes)

Thank you so much for joining in! I cannot wait to see everyone's coloring work!! xoxo

Monday, July 13, 2015

Gratitude Freebie-Yay!

Today I wanted to quickly share a gratitude printable I made.  You can get your copy HERE.  Print as many copies as you want (personal use only please).  I left these black and white so that you can color them as you like.

You can use these in a number of ways.  Use them in pocket letters or other snail mail, use them in your art or written journal, fill one out daily and tape it to your fridge, carry a different card in your pocket every day, or use them in any other way you like.  I'm sure there are loads more ways you could use these...I would love to hear your ideas!! Maybe you can collaborate with a child in your life...he/she does the coloring and you do the writing.  However you end up using these, the main thing is to stay focused on gratitude.  Taking time daily to think about what you are grateful for can really help you to feel happier and more capable of handling the difficulties that so often arise in life.

I hope you have enjoyed this free printable!  I have another in the works, so check back soon!  Wishing you all an abundance of gratitude, happiness, and peace.  Of course these gratitude cards are totally free and you are under no obligation, but...if you feel moved to support me in my art making you can make donations via the donate button to the right.  Any amount is appreciated and useful. Again-donations are totally optional so please enjoy this gift whether whether you contribute or not.  Thank you and best wishes!! xoxo

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Time to Catch Up

Hello Friends!  Here's a pic of me and Buggle over the holiday weekend. Buggle is so funny...notice his "sleepy eyes"?  He was napping when I started taking my  daily selfie (well, almost daily).  As soon as he heard me snapping pics he woke up so that he could be included.  I swear-if he sees me taking self portraits he cries until I pick him up and include him.  Seriously!  He'll even get up from a nap to be in the pics!  He is such a character!!

***New "DONATE" button!!!***  I added a donate button for anyone who wants to support my art making.  Donations are totally optional, so please feel no obligation to contribute.  However, if you do wish to support my can donate any amount.  Believe me every little bit helps-even a dollar can buy something-like a bottle of craft paint for example.  So, if you wish to help-know that any amount is appreciated and will be put to good use.  The donate button will allow you to make donations via PayPal.
Here's a pic of me at Mt. Soledad over the weekend.  I hadn't been in years.  It is such a beautiful panoramic view of San Diego.  By the way...I sewed the skirt myself and even dyed the fabric!  Is 40 too old for a giant hair bow?  LOL   I actually don't care about such things.  I remember awhile back someone on Facebook took the time to post about "woman who wear pj bottoms to Starbucks".  It made me sad to read it and all the judgmental.  Why does it matter what a woman wears to Starbucks?!?  Who gets to decide all these "rules" about what kind of clothing makes a woman "acceptable".  Wouldn't our energy be better spent working on accepting others and focusing on what really matters...kindness, respect, good manners, etc?  Why do some people feel the need to pick apart others like that?  A lot of people say it's what is on the inside that matters, well-if that's true then why are we hearing so much of this judgmental crap?  Why do so few people practice not "judging a book by it's cover"?  I could continue this rant all day, but that's not a good use of my time or energy.  So...back to happy things!
Next on our list of things to catch up on...the sculpture!!   I started this sculpture a few months ago.  I recently finished the sculpting part of the project and am very pleased with the result!!  The sculpture is made of paper mache with a couple of layers of a handmade "clay" over the top.  I started with a clay recipe I found online, but ended up coming up with my own recipe to suit my needs. This was my first time trying this process.  It was far more time consuming than I anticipated, but the result was well  worth it.  The sculpture is "life size", almost 3 feet tall and very solid.  It weighs at least 25 lbs.  I managed to get a nice smooth surface (which is what I wanted) but it took a lot of doing.  I will definitely continue working with this medium and have lots more ideas to bring to life.   Here are a few pics of the finished sculpture before I started the painting part of the project. 

 And here are the early stages of the painting part of the sculpture.  I am painting with acrylics and working in layers.  This is the first few layers of paint.  In the end the sculpture will be covered in flowers and leaves-a wild colorful garden.  I am soooooo excited to get going on the next layer!! Twice a year the San Diego Watercolor Society has an "experimental" show.  Normally there are strict rules as to which surfaces are allowed, etc.  During experimental shows the rules are less strict.  So...I'm hoping to finish by the end of August so that I can enter the sculpture in the September gallery show.  So far as I know, no one has ever entered anything like this.  It will be a lot of fun to bring something so different to the gallery!!  I have a few other projects going with deadlines, so it's going to be a VERY busy couple of months.  Wish me luck on staying on track!!

 And finally...a recent art journal page.  With the start of the MBSR course-mindfulness has been on my mind.  I painted a Buddha as a reminder to be mindful.  Unfortunately I did terribly with keeping up with the course for the first fact, so bad that I decided to start over with the course this week.  Last week was a holiday week and very very busy, so I think the timing was bad.  I could carry on with week two, but I think I'll get more out of it if I get a more solid footing to begin with.  And with my "30 Days of Getting Shit Done"-same thing, didn't accomplish anywhere near what I'd hoped.  So...getting back on course with that today as well.  It's "okay" to "fail", but important not to give up simply because something is difficult.

Monday, June 29, 2015

Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction & 30 Days of Getting Shit Done

First a quick art catch up...
I entered two paintings for the July gallery show at San Diego Watercolor Society and one was accepted-yay!!  The painting in my last post "Wanting" was accepted-hooray!!  I also entered a small painting of a pink peacock, pictured below,  (5x7, mixed media) which was not accepted.  For me the "trying" equals "success", so I don't mind if my artwork is not accepted-so long as I try I feel like a "winner".'s definitely more fun if it is accepted and I am grateful to have a piece in the next show!! We walked around looking at all the entries for the show...Oh man!! This is going to be a really incredible show! There was some really amazing stuff entered-very creative, beautiful work. I always enjoy the shows, but this one has me REALLY excited!  In other art "news"...Today I finished a portrait of Frida Kahlo which I started ages ago.  It's 8x10 mixed media on cardboard.  It was interesting doing a painting on cardboard-it is a fun surface to work with but also challenging. Happy with how it turned out!  She is staying on my desk for now-keeping me company.  This painting is much prettier in person and I am really enjoying looking at it.

And now MBSR...
Today I started a meditation course.  It's a Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction course that I found online for FREE!!  Here you can check out the  FREE COURSE. UCSD has some additional resources HERE if anyone is interested.  For anyone who hasn't heard of MBSR  Jon Kabat-Zinn is a physician who started MBSR  (in 1979 I think).  It's a scientific, non-religious meditation program for health and well being with proven results. Just what the doctor ordered! ( lol-ing at my own terrible joke)!  I meditated for years, but have been struggling to get back into the habit since getting ill.  I sat in silent meditation daily for years and even went on a number of meditation retreats (3-5 days of solid meditation).  I know I am capable of meditation, but for various reasons I've been really resistant to it for the past couple/few years.  I've managed to meditate a little here and there, but haven't made a practice of it since getting sick. My stress level has been out of control for about the last year and I know that meditation will do me a lot of good. I am excited about the course, because I think it has the structure and support (via the guided meditations, videos, and articles) that will help me get back to my meditation/mindfulness practice.  I desperately need it.  It's not fun feeling like I'm on the edge of a nervous breakdown-constantly.  Fortunately that feeling has been (slowly) shifting over the past couple of months, but still-my stress level is WAY too high.

And finally-30 Days of Getting Shit Done...
Feeling constantly on the edge of a nervous breakdown for most of the past year has meant that I have not done a good job at keeping up with much.  So, I've got what feels like a billion nagging tasks which I've been avoiding.  Time to deal with them.  I know that not having all that stuff hanging over my head will help my stress level a lot. So, I typed up a big 'ol list of stuff that's been needing dealt with (I think there's about 20 things on it-some will need more than one day to complete and some are re-curring chores) and have decided that every day for the next 30 days I will do one thing on the list (health permitting).  Today I put away the sculpture stuff that's been on the floor.  I've had two paper shopping bags full of sculpture supplies sitting on the floor for over a month.  I live in a tiny and very FULL studio apartment.  Two bags takes up a lot of space when you haven't got space to spare.  I had to do a bit of re-arranging to get it all put away, but it's done now. And now I'm not tripping over bags of art supplies on the floor.  You can imagine how good I'll feel after 30 days of getting that type of thing off the "to do" list.  Other things on my list...catch up on emails, organize paperwork, clean off  my art table, clean out and organize my pantry, replace the dead twinkle lights in my bathroom, organize bathroom cupboard, and more.  I can't say I'm excited to be tackling all these chores, but I am definitely happy to be freeing up my physical and mental space by doing them.

Thursday, June 25, 2015

"Wanting", Feeling Stuck, and Symbolism

Hello Dear Friends! I just finished a painting today that I want to share with you.  I will be submitting it to the San Diego Watercolor Society gallery this weekend for the monthly juried show (wish me luck!)  This one is titled "Wanting". It is done in mixed media on paper and  measures 20" x 22".  Price is $575 framed.  I am very pleased with how this one turned out!!

I really had to work for this one.  I did some of the work on this piece during a spell of depression.  When I started the piece I was feeling okay, but halfway through...I was hit with a very, very deep depression. The depression pretty much murdered my inspiration.  It is rare for me to lack inspiration or drive to make art, so it was pretty painful to experience that while creating this painting. I really had to push, to force myself, to keep going.  Fortunately the depression (slowly) lifted and inspiration returned, but it was rough going for a bit. I started the flowers during that rough spot. I ended up pushing through that feeling of "stuckness" and coming up with something beautiful (...beautiful to me anyway).  I experimented and used totally new (or "new to me") techniques and materials for the flowers.  I really felt like my ability to create took a leap forward during that experimentation process. That perseverance, that determination to keep going despite the oppressive force that is depression...I ended up expanding my skill set and bringing extra excitment to my art practice.  I look at this finished piece and see my ability to transcend difficulties and my passion for art.  The experience of struggling to get past that "stuckness", the triumph over difficulties...makes this a particularly meaningful and  beautiful piece for me. I hope you enjoy it too!

Symbols have been showing up a lot in my art lately. For me art is very therapeutic and healing. I often say art is my best medicine-and truly it is.  Recently with the heavy use of symbolism in my subconscious  seems to be  working things out on the canvas/paper whether I like it or not.  In this piece I didn't consciously decide, "I am going to work out some of my issues here in this painting".  It happened much more organically.  I felt compelled to add the various elements and during/after adding them I was moved to contemplate their meaning.  Not only did I end up with a pretty painting at the end, but I did actually gain some insight and clarity.

Symbols can be highly personal.  There are some symbols that seem to be almost universal (like a heart being symbolic of love) and some symbols seem to make sense only to the person using them.  I will share some of my personal symbolism with you now.  The hands in this painting represent yours truly-they represent facets of me.  The eye in the dark hand represents "seeing"...insight, wisdom. The gold hand with the hole in the palm represents that part of me that feels something is missing...emptiness, void, something lacking. I am reaching up to that part of myself that is wise and knows what I need and how to access it. For me flowers have a number of, nature, growth, spirituality, and more. In this piece I feel they represent (at least partly) spiritual growth. You might notice that the dark hand appears to be dropping the flowers...?  One of the messages I am getting from this artwork is that I am looking/reaching for something (something "real" that is actually  available to me), but I am not quite catching/grasping it.  There is more meaning that I gleaned from this work, but I will keep some of that for myself.  I do hope that by sharing I will add something to your experience of viewing art-not just my own art, but all art.  Exploring symbolism can be very interesting and useful-be it our own symbols or those used by others. 

Thank you so very much for reading!! I would love to hear any thoughts that you have!  xoxo

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Hello Friends! (a quick update)

It's been awhile since my last post and wanted to say a quick "hello" and let you know I'm still "here" and looking forward to things to come.  First Buggle and I want to wish you a super mega happy day...

I've been busy working on a sculpture which is soooooo close to being done (woohoo!) Well, the sculpting part of it is nearly done.  After the sculpting I will use the sculpture as a "canvas" for a painting.  I will post pics soon and share about my process.

I've started drawing my own coloring book! It's a fun project, but slow going as I have so many projects to work on before it.  I plan to share a page or two here on the blog after I get a bit further down the road with it.  So, that's one thing I've got "in the works".  

All for now! Wishing everyone a lovely day!! xoxo

Friday, May 29, 2015

Gelli Printing Fun and Freebies

Hi guys!  I recently made some gelli prints (woohoo!)  and posted them on Facebook in one of my art groups.  Someone suggested I scan them before using them in an art project-that way I could print out copies in the future for more art projects. Brilliant!  I figured that while I'm scanning for myself I might as well make a PDF for you guys.  So, here ya go! I would love, love, love to see what you guys do with these!! (For personal use only please!)  xo

Get your printable PDF HERE

And get the second PDF HERE

Thanks for visiting my blog! Please do leave a comment if you enjoyed today's post and would like to see more of my gelli prints and if you'd like me to make more gelli printables for you.  xo

p.s.  all of the designs on these pages were made with stamps I designed and made myself  :)

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

More Free Art Journaling Cards-WooHoo!!

Hello Friends! Thanks for all the lovely comments on Facebook about the journaling cards I posted yesterday.  I have another set of printable art journaling cards for you today-Yay! If you missed yesterday's post, be sure to check it out and grab the other set too.  Yesterday's cards are found HERE  .

 For today's set I used some of my hand carved stamps and embellished with pens and markers.  I hope you enjoy them!  These are totally free (personal use only please), but if you feel moved to give something back...I would really enjoy seeing how you use them!!  Sharing your work is of course, totally optional-but if you feel moved to share photos of my cards in your own journal I would really really enjoy it!  Feel free to post links to your blog (or wherever else you have pics of your work) in the comments below.  Or if you are feeling shy about it you can share with me privately.

A shout out to my friend Angella who inspired me with her own journaling cards which can be found HERE  Do check out her blog, it's full of wonderful things!

Printable PDF for these cards is HERE   I recommend printing on card stock using the highest print quality for best results.
Personally, I think I prefer yesterday's cards over today's.  Which do you prefer?  I would love to hear which you prefer (and why if you feel like sharing) will help me to choose what other things I might make available to you in the future.  Also  (at the time this post is being written) there is a little survey in the sidebar on the right...if you have a moment, I would appreciate your input.  Please do take a moment to answer the survey question. Thank you so much for your support and encouragement, it really gives me a great boost and warms my heart!!  xo

Monday, May 25, 2015

Art Journaling Freebie

I have some art journaling cards for you today.  I was inspired by my dear friend Angella and some beautiful art journaling cards she has on her blog.  You can see her work here.  Please do check it out, I'm sure you'll be inspired!  Anyway, I made some journaling cards to use in my own journal and am sharing them here with you.

Link to printable PDF is HERE.   Just print and cut out the individual cards and use however you like (personal use only please).  I recommend printing them on card stock and with the highest print quality for best results.

This is a pretty quick project and you might want to make your own.  I simply painted some square-ish and rectangular-ish shapes in watercolor on watercolor paper. When the paint dried I used pens and markers to add borders and other little elements.  It's okay if your shapes and lines are wonky-it just adds to the charm.  Enjoy!  xo

Sunday, May 24, 2015

My Journaling Practice, Working with Resistance, & a Big Thank You to Suzi Blu

This past year I started doing written journaling again.  Suzi Blu started a journaling "course" (it's more than that...hard to pin it down with a single word/phrase) this past year called "Paint & Chronicle".  Here's a link for anyone who wants to check it out: Suzi Blu's Paint & Chronicle: My Sacred Narrative   She has weeks 1-19 available, and you can start at any time (you don't have to wait for January  or any other special time to dive in). I highly recommend checking it out. Unfortunately (but understandably) due to personal circumstances she is unable to continue offering this wonderful course. I have been so inspired by the course (and her and her art) that I don't want to lose that momentum.  So, I've decided to create my own journaling practice.  I've no intention to create the next "Paint & Chronicle" or  take Suzi's place in the journaling world  or anything like that (as if I could even if I wanted to!).  What I *do* want to do is take some of the tools I learned from P&C and incorporate them into a "new-tailor-made-for-me" journaling practice.

Some of the qualities of P&C that I want to carry over into my "new" journaling practice are:

1.  Having a focus and using writing prompts

2.  Using journaling as a tool for taking real action in life

3.  Combining written journaling, art journaling, & scrapbooking all in one journal

Here are my pages for the week.  As you can see my scanning job was less than perfect-oh well!

I liked that Suzi had broken up P&C into weeks.  Each month had a theme and each week had it's own prompts and/or actions.  In my new journaling practice I won't have a monthly theme, but will go week by week.  Each week I will pick a theme.  For me, going week by week will allow me to work with an issue/topic for as long or short amount of time as I need.  When I've done all the work  I need to do with a topic then I'll pick a new one for the next week.  For example this week I am choosing to work with the topic of "resistance".  I will work with it for as many weeks as I need to and then choose a new topic.  (By the way, don't ask why I chose a circus theme...I don't actually like the circus due to the animal cruelty...funny Bunny!)

I've been noticing a lot of resistance in my life lately.  Resistance to meditation, to yoga, to having a regular bedtime, etc.  Soooooooo many things I'm resisting lately!  Good, healthy things that I WANT in my life! So, this is a great place for me to start in my "new" journaling practice.  Suzi picked a quote each week to go with her theme.  I realized I really like adding inspiring quotes to my pages and will continue to do that.  I also liked that she used writing prompts to go with the themes-to give some direction.  Prior to P&C my journaling was all stream of consciousness type writing.  I found the prompts really helpful and will come up with my own each week.

My prompts are written underneath a flip out card I taped into my journal spread:

This week my writing prompts are:

1. Where in my life am I experiencing resistance?

2.  What are my reasons for resistance in each area of my life?

3.  Where am I most stuck?

4.  What can I do to break through the resistance and become unstuck?

5.  What are some ways I can reward myself for reaching my goals along the way to "unstuckness"?

This is how I've been working in my journal, and will continue to work.  I am working in a 8.5 x 11 (I think) size Moleskine sketchbook.  I tape in graph paper (something I learned from Suzi) to do my writing on.  I have been taping two or three pages on top of each other onto the sketchbook page.  I then do some sort of artwork on the underneath Moleskine paper.  I sometimes tape in decorative papers or lists or random other things too.  Today I taped in a pic of a bird from a magazine which I plan to use as a drawing reference. In the pics below you can see how I set up my page(s) for the day. (Sorry for the crappy's very overcast today and I just couldn't get a good pic to save my life.  And you saw how the scanning went! ha!

By the self care list and self esteem list (which I've taped into my journal) are printable and available to you HERE on my blog (for free)  if you want a copy(s).

So, there you go! I hope you enjoyed hearing about my journaling practice.  I would love to hear about how you journal! Feel free to write about your own journaling practice in the comments (or write about anything at all that you feel moved to write about). And a big giant THANK YOU to Suzi Blu for 6 months of Paint & Chronicle!!  I credit Suzi and P&C for getting me back into written journaling and for sooooooo much inspiration!  I learned a lot, accomplished a lot, did a lot of growing, and so much more over these past 6 months. And I've made some wonderful friends through P&C, including Suzi herself.  Thank you so very much dear Suzi!!  Much love!  

Please do check out these links to Suzi's work.  She is an incredible artist who sells all sorts of cool stuff...rubber stamps, original art, and you can even take an online class with her!

Friday, May 22, 2015

Self-Care and Self-Esteem (Free Printable)

Hello everybody!  Thank you for all of the support and encouragement yesterday on "opening day" of my new blog.  Today I have another free printable for you-Yay!! I won't have printables every day, but when I make something for myself that I think you guys might like I will try to make it available to you as well.'s printable is a self-care and self-esteem combo.  (Clickable link to the PDF below)  The side with the cute girl is for us to write down our self-care tasks/goals/tools for the day.  The side with the plants is for us to write down some of the reasons we deserve to give ourselves loving self-care.

SELF CARE:     Self-care tasks for the day will be different for everyone, but I will share a few ideas for those who feel they can't come up with any at the moment.  If you have suggestions for self care tools, please feel free to share them in the comments! There are basic self-care tasks that need done daily like brushing our teeth, getting a good night's sleep, and eating nutritious food.  Those might seem like no brainers, but when a person is depressed or anxious it can be easy to forget to do those things (or not feel like doing them).  Having a written reminder can be helpful for a person struggling to get the minimum done.  Then there are the "above-the-minimum" tasks, the tools that we can use to improve our quality of life- & to cope with things like anxiety and depression.  This is where we all might have different things to add to our lists.  Some of mine would be:  color in a coloring book (helps me when depressed), play with my cat Buggle (he's always good for a laugh and it helps my depression), and organize my art supplies (this is a good one for me to do while anxious).  Other tools which might be a little more universal: taking a walk, meditating, yoga, taking a few deep breaths, watching a movie, talking to a good friend, and soooooooo much more.

SELF ESTEEM:     For the self-esteem side of our printable we can list some things that make us feel worthy of taking good, loving care of ourselves.  For some of us this will be really, really hard.  If you find it too challenging to come up with anything or if you can only think of one or two things...consider asking a loved one (or several loved ones) to add to your list.  Someone who cares about you might be able to help you see some of the wonderful qualities in you that you aren't seeing at the moment.  EVERYONE has positive qualities and everyone has potential, so if your mind is telling you that you don't have anything to add to your worthiness list-trust me, it's a lie!!  A few tips to help you with your list (Please don't be limited by this list!!  There is sooooo much more that can be used to make your list, this is just a very small list of things to help you brainstorm)...

*  Think about how you interact with others.  Are you a good friend, sibling, employee, a good caregiver to a pet, etc?   Are you a good listener, helper, supporter, encourager?

*  Do you have hobbies?  What do you enjoy doing?  Don't judge the quality or skill level here!!  Whatever you are capable of doing deserves to be nurtured-not just the things you are "good" or skilled at.  For example I am an artist.  That deserves to be nurtured and taking good, loving care of myself is one way to nurture my creativity.  It doesn't matter what my skill level is-my artisitc side deserves good care whether I am the most or least skilled artist in the world.

*  What is in your heart?  Are you kind? Compassionate?  Loving?

*  What do other people say about you?  Ignore any negative feedback you've gotten.  We are only concerned with the positive feedback right now.  What do you tend to hear over and over from others?

I hope that you are able to create a nice long self-esteem list!  You could try writing out a new list every day and see just how many things you are able to come up with!  Even if you can easily come up with a worthiness still might be a good boost to ask loved ones to add to the list.  Having good self esteem increases quality of live big time.  Taking a few minutes to recognize some of the ways you are deserving of good care is time well spent.

I hope this was helpful!  I would love to hear your thoughts on this printable.  And if you have requests for future printables or tutorials feel free to put them in the comments.  I can't promise I'll be able to fulfill them all, but I will definitely consider all requests.  Thanks for joining me here on the blog!!

Click HERE to get your free printable

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Self Care Zine Freebie

Hello Friends!
Thank you for visiting my new blog!  I am planning to use this space to share about my life, my art, my beloved Buggle and more.  I am also hoping to share things that will be (hopefully) of use to others.  For example, today I have a self care zine for you to print out (and... it's FREE-Yaaaaaayyyyy!!)  Of course, I couldn't just write out a list of self care needs...I had to art it up and make a little book.  EVERYTHING becomes art for me.

For those that don't already know me...HI! My name is Bunny.  I am a disabled artist living in beautiful San Diego, CA with my beloved cat Buggle.  I have been coping with anxiety and depression for...well- forever.  This little project is something I made  as a coping tool. I am making it available for anyone who wants a copy, but please (a little disclaimer here)  know that I am NOT a mental health professional. (Unfortunately)  I am not able to help anyone else with mental health issues (I wish I could, but I am just not qualified to do so).

This zine can be cut and folded to make a little book that you can keep with you to help keep you on track with your self-care. I have been struggling with self care a little bit lately and created this little zine as a way to help myself.  I hope that it helps you too!!  I will share how I filled out my book   in case you can't come up with any self care tools  of your own at the moment.

One thing I need to do daily for good self care is:  get enough sleep!!
Something that helps when I'm down is:  coloring in a coloring book.
Something that helps when I'm stressed is:  organizing my art supplies.
A self care tool I want to try is:  bed yoga.
Someone I can call when I need support:  Juli!
One self care task I could get better at is:  healthy eating.
A tried and true self care tool is:  making art!

Do you have favorite self care activities?  Did you find my zine useful?  Feel free to share in the comments section below!

Below is a link that will show you how to fold and cut your zine to make it into a neat little book.  You could also cut each little page out and paste into a little handmade book if you prefer a different look (example below).  Or get creative and find your own way of making it into a book (please share if you do!!)

Click the link below to print and/or download your copy!  (I am working on getting a clickable image rather than a link-sorry for the inconvenience)

Check out this link for a nifty way to turn your printed self care paper into a groovy little book.

Here is a photo of my cut and folded zine:

And here are photos of another book I made using this printable PDF.  In this book I used some scraps from a manila folder as my base pages and then taped my printed pages into it with decorative tapes.  I then stamped the edges with hand carved stamps and added some gel pen and marker doodles.  I think it came out really cute for such a quick project!  Right now (for me) anything I can do to motivate myself to bump up my self care efforts is helpful!!

Feel free to print out as many zines as you like!  Give them to friends and family if you wish.  This printable zine has been created as a gift, so please-personal use only, do not sell or otherwise use it to profit yourself. Thank you!!

And finally...this is my first blog post, first time creating a PDF, etc.  So, I'm still learning!  If you have any problems let me know and I will do my best to sort it out as quickly as possible.  And a big THANK YOU to all my loved ones for your unwavering support and encouragement which gives me wings to SOAR!!