My Memories Suite Giveaway

Today I am hosting a giveaway…my very very first.

I was always really attracted to the “idea” of scrapbooking, and I’ve even managed to put together a few, before I was a full time artist and a mom. The only problem….Time! A few years ago, I started to make a scrapbook for my mom for a birthday gift. It’s still not done!! I always say, “when I have time”…with my kids growing up and being soooooo…busy, I just haven’t managed to finish it off.  Deciding on paper, finding the right embellishments and then cutting and gluing everything takes forever. Well, I don’t have to do that anymore, because now I’ve found My Memories.
My Memories Suite is rated #1 on Amazon and Top Ten Reviews. You can create so many different projects: photobooks, digital scrapbooks, cards, calendars, and printables for parties, and they’re free templates are gorgeous. Look what I made today, in half an hour!

I couldn’t resist sharing the whole thing…it was fun to put together, and super, super easy. Basically just drag and drop your photos into the squares and…voila! A beautiful layout. They have a lot of great pre-made templates, and new ones are very affordable from their site. Everything is customizable, too. The sizes of pictures, the embellishments, the page elements…it’s really a great program.
Sooooo….I guess you’re wondering what you have to do to Win this great software: just follow the instructions below…

First, Like my Facebook Page or if you don’t do facebook, follow my blog…
Then, follow me on Twitter
Then, answer me this, in the comment section…What made you smile today? (and tell me if you’ve done the other things)

I’ll announce the winners in a week…and if you just can’t wait, or you don’t want to follow my instructions, lol, you can get 10 bucks off of the software, any time, by clicking on the little icon below…

Grizzly Dreams

Grizzly Dreams (Please click to see big…it looks WAY better:)

This idea came to me in about 30 seconds while I was reading a book about blogging..???
I have no idea where it came from. I don’t think that I was thinking about bears…It was more like, “A blog header should be 692 pix, by 190 pix…wow, that would be a cool painting!”  I did a lightning fast sketch so I wouldn’t forget, and kept reading my book. I didn’t actually get to the painting for a few days. 
This sort of depicts Bella Coola, where I live, but no particular scene. There’s a Nuxalk village, with totem poles, really high, snow-capped mountains, salmon in the rivers, and lots of grizzly bears.
So…the urge to paint from my imagination has passed…there’s no more imaginary scenes fighting to get out of my confusing little brain, so I’m back to my 100 paintings. Today I painted an interesting bottle/vase from life. It’s square, with a flower shaped opening…hmmm…maybe it is a vase…
And, I also painted a cow…to go with the farming/back to the land/natural living series of gallery paintings I’m working on. They will all be posted within the next few days.
These last two fun little illustrations will be posted as prints for sale on Etsy soon, as well, as soon as I get some more paper…
Talk to ya’ tomorrow.

Once upon a time, there was a hungry bear…

So…I should have known better…really…I’m a Taurus, and I’m not sure if this has anything to do with it or not, but…Ever since I was little, every time someone has tried to make me do something, whether I may have possibly wanted to do it or not, I dig in my heels and resist. The more they push me, the more I definitely DO NOT want to do it. Even if I may have started out kind of wanting to…
Anyways, my point is, I told myself…”You are going to paint 100 paintings in 100 days”, and myself, in typical Tahirih fashion (although, I might add, I kinda wanted to) dug in her heels and decided that anything else would be better than painting 100 paintings in 100 days!

The first week went fine, I was enjoying myself, squinting away quite happily, and then something happened. Inspiration.

But it had nothing to do with painting from life. In fact, it had nothing to do with painting from a photograph.
Like I said, I should have known! My grown-up me says “you’re going to paint real things, from life!” and my child me says “No way…I want to paint…from my IMAGINATION!” Add a little foot stomp there for emphasis, lol! I don’t really know why this is happening. I don’t generally get inspired by my imagination…I’m usually moaning about my lack of it, and drooling over everyone elses beautiful, imaginary scenes. Anyways, here is the result. I put it on a black background so you could see the edge of the paper…BTW, I promise I’ll get back to my 100 paintings soon!

Orange Crush – the sequel

Orange Crush ~ the Sequel
6″ x 8″ oil on canvas

This is the next in my vintage bottle series…It was really fun to do. I was a bit afraid of the texture on the bottle, but it turned out to be easier than it looked. 
This one is the eighth painting in my 100 paintings series and is  up for bid on ebay right now
Click below to try your chance at winning this one:


Pepsi Cola and New Wheels

Pepsi-Cola 6″ x 8″ oil on canvas
Hi Y’all…I’m having such a great day! I’m the proud owner of a new (to me) blue mountain bike! It’s amazing what makes your day:) But seriously, I haven’t had a bike in about fifteen years. What’s up with that!? I rode so far!! It’s nice to not have to just depend on my two feet anymore. It takes sooooooo…long to get anywhere by running. Now I can get to the store, the post office, friends’ houses…I don’t have to be just a lonely, house-bound painter…Yay! And to top it all off, as I was riding home, I looked into the clearing at a little creek where I like to sit for a break and a drink sometimes when I’m on a run, and there was a momma deer and her baby. The weren’t afraid and I sat and watched them for about ten minutes until they decided I was boring and walked away into the forest. So Cool! It made me feel so blessed to live in a place where I can experience something like that at any random time. Who needs Starbucks?!
Oh yeah, I’m a painter…that’s what this blog is about;)  My new ebay offering and practice pic is another old bottle we found in the dirt at the same old farmhouse as in the previous post. I guess they like Pepsi and Orange Crush. Lucky for me…now I just need a Coca-Cola and a 7-up bottle to finish up the series. I do have one more pop bottle to paint tomorrow. It’s really cool, and really old. I can’t wait to share it with you. 
Anyways, this one’s up on ebay right now…CHEAP…too cheap, but if you want it click below…Please! Lol!


Orange Crush, vintage bottle still life

Orange Crush – 6″ x 8″ oil on canvas
About a week ago, I decided that I was going to ditch the photo references for a while and paint from life. It’s something I’ve never done consistently, and I know that it’s an imperative skill to learn, as it helps fill in the blanks for you when you are painting from photos. Photos lack depth, their range of values is short, and the colors are never true. 
So, this is an excercise. I’m not going to stop painting what I usually paint, but I’m going to try to fit in one of these little guys every day, as well.  My goal is “100 paintings in 100 days”. I’m going to try to post one every week day (I take weekends off to hang with my kids.) And they will be up for auction, starting at a very reasonable price.
A few years ago, we were living on an old farm from the fifties and my husband found this vintage bottle buried in the dirt. I thought it would make a great still life subject! And to make the play on words, I added the orange. I placed the bottle and orange on a piece of glass in my black covered shadow box to create the reflection…