Saturday, August 29, 2009

Signs of Autumn....

As September approaches, and signs of autumn begin to appear here in Lancaster County, I find my work taking on a bit of a cooler feel....

This piece is the latest eBay offering - the last large sign I have in stock which is not set aside for the Ghoultide Gathering. I love the shape of these, and really must paint one for myself one of these days - they're perfect for either wall, door crown or mounted on a post outside, welcoming trick-or-treaters and Halloween party goers. :)

('Cause, you know, ONE of these days I'm sure I'll have time for a Halloween party, hehe!)

So yes.....the faintest hint of autumn is in the air here, and much as I try to enjoy the blessings of each season as I'm IN it, I have to admit a sense of anticipation always hits this time of year.

There are just so many things to love about autumn....

The hills on fire with color

Fresh picked local apples for pies and applesauce

Big comfy sweaters and Timberland boots

Crock pot dinners

Starbucks pumpkin spice lattes (I know, I know, they're taking over the world, and I should go out of my way to support small, independent coffee houses instead, but maaaaaaaan these things are good!)

The smell of woodsmoke coming from nearby farms

Neighborhood children BACK IN SCHOOL (yay!)

Local pumpkin butter

Knitting (which I actually do all year, but I'm more into it as the temps cool down)

And last but not least, the Ghoultide Gathering!

What are some of YOUR favorite things about autumn?

♥ Carolee

Friday, August 28, 2009

An Informal Poll of Sorts :)

Lot's of magic afoot in the studio these days, and all of it original, one of a kind art....

I adore working like this - completely immersing myself in one piece at a time, pouring all that energy into a single creation. It allows me to almost become lost in a piece....absolute bliss as an artist!

I know some artists prefer to work on pieces en masse, and I do admire that. It certainly seems more productive....But alas, I've never been much good at multi-tasking. Can't even drive and talk on the phone at the same time, hehe!

The reason I mention this is I've been receiving emails lately asking for prints, postcards and patterns. I've always been sooooooooo reluctant to go down that road - like it goes against the grain of the way I usually work....

But working this way also has it's limitations, and there's the nagging thought that offering just a few of these might make my work more accessible. Might make it possible in these challenging economic times for more people to have little bit of Halloween whimsy ala King of Mice.

So here's my question. Questions, actually.

Do you think a few packages of cards would fly on Etsy?

Do you think a couple of simple painting patterns would be appealing?

And if so, what would you like to see?

Inquiring minds want to know. ;)

♥ Carolee

Monday, August 24, 2009

A Winner :)

First, thanks sooooooooo much for all the kind comments you left on my little blog giveaway! I'm overwhelmed by the response, and wish I had a trinket box to send to each and every one of you!!

But there's just the one, and it goes to Tonya, of Back Porch Pickins. Congrats, Tonya! Shoot me an email with your mailing address, and I'll get this out asap. :)

(And look for another giveaway very soon!)

♥ Carolee

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Mood Music :)

Just a quick post today, as I'm painting madly on two different commissions, and am FINALLY off to see the Harry Potter movie this evening (yay!)

The annual autumn-wishies hit full force this week, so I was feeling the need for a little mood music, and updated the playlist yet again...

If you're into autumn and Halloween (and really, who ISN'T?!) just scroll down to the purple playlist on the right, where you'll find some inspiring mystical tunes, followed by some Halloween stuff, ending with Christopher Walken's rendition of Edgar Allen Poe's "The Raven".

What kind of music puts YOU in the *spirit* of things?!

~ Carolee

Friday, August 21, 2009

Show and Tell

Remember those days in school? I remember Show and Tell was always on a Tuesday, and I also remember just being sooooooooo excited to share....well, I can't exactly remember WHAT, but do I remember the excitement. ;)

That's a bit how I'm feeling - so much to share I hardly know where to start!

The week began with a knock at the front door, which I admit I tried very hard to ignore. I do that sometimes if I'm working - ignore knocks at the door. It's usually either magazine salespeople or young men in ties trying to convert me, so I'm in no hurry to check it out. But Cadie and Cosmo (a.k.a. the crazy Aussies) were not having any of that, and when the barking finally reached a level that went straight for my spinal cord, I decided to see what the fuss was about.....

Sooooooo glad I did!

It was a priority mail delivery from one of my collectors and friends - this beautiful bunny teapot, a gift for my 50th! Can you believe it!? Not that I'm 50 I mean, but that one of my collectors would be so sweet? I'm overwhelmed. It's in the china cabinet with a few of the other teapots (I have a smallish collection), where it will stay until I change the teapots around for Christmas. :)

Thank you again, Barbara!! I'll treasure it always....

The next amazingly wonderful surprise came last night in the form of two emails congratulating me on my work appearing in Early American Life magazine's "Events" section, representing the Ghoultide Gathering. Here's the little blurb, with a photo of last year's "Carnivale de Mystique" chest....

I'm thinking of bringing something similar to the show this year, we'll see. Just two of these chests left and one is already in progress for a commission. ;)

The next bit of excitement is that I was able to lay my hands on one more very large platter, which I've spent the last couple of days working wicked and whimsical magic on...

It lists tonight on eBay, at 9PM eastern. :)

Finally, I have to share the fabulous Miss Vanessa Valencia's annual Halloween Party! SUCH fun, these blog events, and I'll be there with pointy shoes and bells on. :)

That's about it for now. I'm about to have a glass of red wine with my very late supper, put my feet up and catch up on a bit of reading.

Oh! And if you haven't already, please scroll down to the previous post and sign up for my little giveaway. I'll draw the winner's name on Monday. :)

Wishing everyone a magical weekend!

¸.•´¸.•*¨) ¸.•*¨)
(¸.•´ (¸.•´ .•´ ¸¸.•¨¯`• ~ Carolee

Monday, August 17, 2009

A Little Blog Love Back Atcha...

It occurred to me the other day as I was blog hopping....

It's been the longest time since I've had a giveaway. :)

Sometimes life just gets in the way...the painting and sculpting, the commissions and shows and auctions, the email and errands, the cooking and cleaning. Craziness around here on a daily basis...

So I'm here to remedy that with this humble little trinket box. It's just 3" x 3" x 3", but perfect for a few teabags or maybe some catnip....or rings, or paperclips, or whatever tiny treasures you may want to keep in it.

I love the tiny mice running around the edge, and the little message inside. They make me smile. :)

All you have to do is leave a comment here about something that makes you smile, and you'll be entered in the drawing. If you follow my blog, you'll be entered twice. And if you have a blog and give this little giveaway a mention, I'll make it three times. :)

And if you don't have a blog which links to your post, be sure to leave me your email so I have a way to get in touch with you.:)

Names will be tossed in the hat one week from today (Monday, August 24th) at 9PM eastern, and I'll announce the winner. (Oh, and I'm fine with international entries!)

Thanks for playing!
♥ Carolee

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Wicked Good Tea and Other Goodies....

It's not often I'm tempted to keep a piece of my work instead of selling it - if I did that, I'd eventually have to get a "real" job, and I love this artsy life too much! But I must admit it's sometimes hard to part with the tea pieces....

Like dog and cat people, and journey and destination people, I think there are also coffee and tea people. And while I do love my vanilla lattes, for the most part I fall into the latter category.

There's something truly magical about a good cup of tea - it warms, it soothes, it relaxes - just a few sips can change your whole perspective....Which is exactly the feeling I was trying to convey with the latest eBay offering, a witchy tea box. I hope I've succeeded. ;)

I've also been busy these past few days with creative pursuits of the culinary variety...

Friday's project was a fresh peach pound cake with apricot brandy glaze....

And last night found me staying up 'til all hours blanching, cooling, cutting and freezing a large batch of summer sweet corn. This is an annual project, and I admit I grumble about the time involved, but come January, I'm always soooooooo glad I froze so much of the stuff. :)

I'd like to say the latest domestic kick extended itself to houscleaning and organizing, but I'm afraid the place still looks like the art explosion. ;)

Ah well, one thing at a time.....

It's approaching midnight as I type this, and if I'm not careful, I'll turn into a pumpkin, so off I go. But not before wishing everyone a happy and creative week ahead!

I'll be back very soon with photos of works in progress....

♥ Carolee

Thursday, August 13, 2009

*It's the MOST Wonderful Time of the Year!*

Nooooooo, not Back to School, silly....


And of course the weeks leading up to it, when we get to completely immerse ourselves in all things wicked fun; bright colors, parties, dressing up, parties, scary movies, tricks and treats...and did I mention PARTIES?!

As you can tell by the latest eBay offering, I have Halloween parties and entertaining on the brain this week....

Eight whimsical coasters, which live in their very own Halloween box. :)

My favorite is the little kitten surprised by the mouse, hehe....

I can't even tell you how many hours went into this one. Enough that all my other plans for the day went right out the window. Seriously. My long suffering husband is at Best Buy as I type this, picking up a new vacuum cleaner, which I've been promising to buy for DAYS now. The old ones died (both of them) and with two Aussie dogs and three cats, waiting until the weekend is just not an option. ;)

I did however manage to pull dinner together, so when he gets home, he'll be rewarded with one of his favorites, baked ziti. Doesn't it look yummy?

Check out the old formica boomerang pattern on my kitchen counters, haha. :)

LOTS of projects in the works tomorrow too, including a plan to do something with half a peck of very ripe peaches. Cobbler, pie, pound cake - not sure yet, but I'll try to share a photo.

In the meantime, I'm off to throw together a salad to go with that ziti. I'll be back soon with new photos and more Halloween goodies!

♥ Carolee

Monday, August 10, 2009

As Busy As....

....A bee? As busy as a beaver? As busy as Grand Central Station? As busy as a one armed paper hanger? As busy as a one legged man in an a** kicking contest?

All this, and other idioms as well, hehe....

I did however manage (despite a power outage yesterday) to pull a piece out of the fire for last night's PFATT Marketplace update. Just one this month, available on a first come basis, and priced a bit lower than the usual "buy-it now" option on eBay. I wanted to create something not only for Halloween, but for the entire season. The handsome fellow here looks so much like Merlin, I wish I could keep it. But sell it I must, so if you're interested, just shoot me an email. UPDATE - SOLD. :)

LOTS of other goodies in the works too, but many will be going with me to the Ghoultide Gathering. This time of year is always absolute insanity, with more ideas spinning around in my head than time to create them...Emails for commission work are also pouring in, and I'm booked all the way through October now!

Look for another eBay offering tonight, and a Halloween checkers game later in the week (the design will be different, but see my banner above for a peek at the piece - an actual table, with a removeable top for storage). One of these days I need to paint one of these for myself - it's the perfect size for storing magazines, which I'm quite sure have found a way to reproduce. ;)

Okay - off I go now to forage around the wood stash to see what strikes my fancy today....You have to love a job where you wake up most mornings wondering what would be FUN to do today, eh?!

Whatever you're doing today, I wish you an enjoyable time of it too! Back very soon....

♥ Carolee

Sunday, August 9, 2009

A Welcome Detour and a Talented Young Artist

Much as I LOVE painting all things *wicked and whimsical*, it's fun to veer from that occasionally - and soooooo good for the creative soul....

So I thought I'd share the most recent project (and the result of Thursday's treasure hunt) - a memory box presented to my niece Sarah at her wedding shower yesterday....

It's difficult to see in the photo, but the lovebirds are actually a canvas painting, set on risers about a half inch above the surface. LOTS of fun gathering the papers, buttons and jewels for this piece, and I'm thinking I just may need to do a Halloween and Christmas version soon.

Sarah loved the piece, which of course made me feel all warm and fuzzy, but the BIG hit of the party was my other niece Amber's gift to her big sister Sarah. With her permission, I'm sharing it here, because I just think its soooooooo amazing.

Here's Sarah and Joe's engagement photo....

(Aren't they just the cutest couple?)

And here's the watercolor portrait Amber painted using the above photo for reference...

Now, here's the amazing part. Amber is just thirteen years old. Not only is she just thirteen, but she chose to work in one of the most difficult mediums there is when it comes to portraits. Talented and fearless - a combination which (assuming she pursues this as a career) I have a feeling will take her far, and someday we'll all say "I knew her when..."

That's about it for today.....Day off are fun, and I wouldn't have missed the shower for the world, but commissions, auctions and show pieces are looming! So off I go....

Back soon with new work. ;)

♥ Carolee

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Wicked Jack and a Treasure Hunt!

I've been busier than busy this week, and it's likely to continue, but today I'm allowing myself a little reprieve to go treasure hunting for a secret project! I'm a woman on a mission, searching for paper and canvas, buttons and bows, ribons and lace, vintage hardware, and all things sparkly....Wishing very much some of my artistic sisters were close enough to join me, but I'm afraid this is going to be a solo mission. ;)

Don't you just LOVE days like this? Where the whole purpose is just discovery and ArT!?

Too fun. And Lancaster County is just the place to do it...Sooooooooooo many artsy-crafty stores and architectural salvage places. Maybe I'll bring my camera so I can share later?

Oh! And while we're on the subject of sharing, here's a peek at the current eBay listing...

Not much else new around here, except of course I'm painting like MAD for the upcoming Ghoultide Gathering! My talented woodworker just dropped off a large order last week, so look for a couple of real showstoppers on eBay too, including a very large Halloween checkers game table (check out the banner above - such a cool piece!) of course, this one will be painted differently, so stay tuned.....

Right now I'm off to grab a few CDs for the car (most of the stuff in there is John's at the moment, which means noisy electric stuff, hehe)....Anyway, I just picked up the new Jason Mraz with one of the many birthday gift cards and am LOVING it, so if you're in Lancaster County and see a black Beetle loaded with treasures and emanating happy music, that'll be me. :)

OK, off I go....Have a happy and *cReATivE* Thursday, all!!

♥ Carolee

Monday, August 3, 2009

Blog Love + Halloween and Holiday Excitement + Magical Shows!

I feel like I've been gone for AGES, but really it's just been a few days....

Can I tell you the truth? I've been busy beyond belief, but must also admit to being sucked in to the vortex that is Facebook.... And methinks I'm not the only one....There does seem to be a bit of a mass blog exodus going on, doesn't there?

The thing is, I LOVE my blog. I really do. And while keeping up in real time is fun, this feels more, well - more in depth, at least as much as that's possible on the internet. Kind of like the difference between fast food and a lovely gourmet meal. Oh! And speaking of blog love, I believe the new issue of Artful Blogging is due any day now. Can't wait to see this one - along with ADQ, Where Women Create and Holidays and Celebrations. (Stampington publications, all!) Thank heavens for birthday gift cards to Barnes and Noble, hehe....

Studio time is being spent gearing up for Halloween now, with a few commissions thrown into the mix, and of course eBay and Etsy. Today's project was a sign (or door crown) in vintage black and orange (listed now on eBay)....

Does it put you in a Halloween kind of mood?! It certainly has the effect on me, but then, so does everything this time of year! Won't be long at all until we're wearing sweaters, drinking hot apple cider and carving pumpkins....

"It's the mooooost wonderful time of the year!"....(that's me singing) ;)

And speaking of the most wonderful time, here are three reasons why....

Tinsel and Treasures, in Alamo, California. I soooooooooooo wish I could go to this one. Such an incredible lineup of artists.

Halloween and Vine, in Petaluma - Fabulous!! (perhaps next year?)...

And of course, the Ghoultide Gathering - a truly amazing Halloween Art show, not to be missed. If you're within striking distance, do try to make it! Seriously, these shows are absolutely magical, and completely infused with the *spirit* of the season (pun intended).

Okay, that's about it for tonight. If I'm not careful, I'll turn into a pumpkin myself - a Halloween pumpkin, but a pumpkin nonetheless....

So I'm off now, but not before wishing you a happy and creative rest of the week!! Back as soon as I possibly can....

♥ Carolee

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Drive By Post

SWAMPED here, so just popping in to say I'll be back with a REAL update (photos and everything) in the next day or two! Lots of irons in the fire at the moment; commissions, eBay pieces, a little giveaway piece and of course, and LOTS of work for the upcoming Ghoultide Gathering (sooooooooo looking forward to meeting some of you in person at this one!)

It's pouring down rain as I type this, bouncing off the skylight overhead, and cooling things down considerably - really putting me in an autumn kind of mood, so back I go to painting witches!

More soon, I promise. ;)

~ Carolee