Wednesday, October 1, 2014

I am an artist... . ! ? ...

"In the Garden" from After the Storm visual    ©LisaCheney
At what point is the title "artist" no longer followed by a question mark?

I don't have a day marked on my calendar reminding me that I am an artist. I don't know if I was born this way or if I grew over time to resemble the definition. I don't recall having an epiphany one glorious day. I just know that I can't NOT express what I see and feel in a visual way. There is an ache in my chest and stomach that wont go away until I am immersed in the process of creating. I get cranky,  blame others and my busy schedule when I can't sit with my art supplies. In reality, it is me. Only me. There is no one else to blame. Only me. My Ego sabotages my creativity, my muse. Yet She is always there, waiting for me to show up. She is deep within. Waiting. Watching.

Sometimes I wonder if Artist still applies to me when days, weeks, months pass with no art being created? The answer is always, Yes. For when the gates are finally allowed to open, she emerges and can not be quieted. She is happy and full of information. She knows the truth of the remarkable title of "artist" and embraces it fully.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Art is messy... Anyone up for a game of "I Spy"?

It has been some time since I've written a post for my blog. A very long time. I sit here thinking about the past few months, "What has kept me preoccupied?" "Why haven't I been connecting with myself here, in this space, or in my books?" Well I am still mulling those questions around in my head. The good news is I am starting to make art again. And it feels WONDERFUL!

My studio as a general rule isn't spic-n-span however I am usually mortified when someone "pops over" just to say hello unannounced. The voice in my head shouts, "You are such a SLOB! Nobody wants to see your studio looking like THIS!" and I end up apologizing for my messes. However, during my recent whirlwind of creativeness I took this picture late one night of my studio and  posted it on my FB page. Interestingly, and surprising to me, I'm not the only one with a "messy" studio. Afterwards, I started actually inviting friends over without picking up first and they all loved me just the same, and my studio even more than before.

So, today I take pics of what my current world is like... after weeks of preparing for my solo exhibit (more to come on that next) and a week of unburying myself from emails and freelance work. I must say I am ready to tidy up now that I'm having a tough time finding things, and I am hoping my lost set of car keys are somewhere in here.

Left side
workspace counter
right side and back wall... ugh my "design" area has
been overrun with mounds of paper!

So Seth, Here's to you!! We were in the same mindset and I didn't even know until today... ;-)

I actually cleaned up my encaustic palette in
preparation for working on a new piece.

containers for supplies...that are missing their
supplies, somewhere else on the counter
getting caught up on my freelance design jobs!

See that mound of "stuff" on the floor? Yeah, that is wax.
My floor is now covered in wax that needs to be scraped off. 
Coffee helps. A Lot. 

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

21 Secrets Coming SOON!! Sneak peak....

in the background, you can still see the ghost of my self portrait

So, a few weeks ago I began the exciting new journey of filming my first on-line workshop. We are still in the editing phase and tomorrow I get to see how it is all coming together. I am excited and a little nervous...but mostly thrilled to finally be able to jump into the online workshop world and work with individuals that I otherwise wouldn't be able to meet, talk/share with, and more importantly... touch on a deeper level.

After filming the techniques for The Savage Mirror workshop, I ended up with a self portrait (the demo I did for the workshop) that needed it's story brought to life (something I have each participant do with their own portraits)... last night I dove in, and this is were the page currently sits. My eye, and the expression of it is what drew me into the mirror... that is what I wanted to keep. The pages are still in progress, and more needs to be pulled and pushed, more text to be brought forth, and more symbolism incorporated as the story unfolds. I now wish I had my camera to film the progress... but I did take these stills. I will share the continued metamorphosis and final piece with all of you that sign up for the "21 Secrets Art Journaling Workshop." You still have a small window of opportunity to learn how this portrait came about and to join me in the Savage Mirror workshop!!! I hope to see you in a few short weeks!!

Click here for more information about
 "21 Secrets" and how to sign up.

"She Let Go" in progress.... 

Monday, October 14, 2013

21 Secrets 2014!!!!

Click here for more info on 21 Secrets
Last week on my Facebook pages, I mentioned and teased you with the upcoming On-line class I'll be teaching. Before giving you all the details I want to first give a bit of my background, for those just tuning in or that have just recently started following my blog.

My journey with visual journaling began back in 2007, back when I needed a creative outlet besides my graphic design. I have drawn and painted on and off my whole life; for years I had been making books as gifts for others; I had been using the combination of typography and imagery in my design work for over a decade; yet at that time had never combined all this into one art form. In 2007, I hadn't heard of the term "visual journaling", I just wanted to start keeping a sketchbook again. That "sketchbook" quickly morphed into a book that contained both imagery and my writing. I was inspired by joining online sketchbook exchanges, and sharing my visual journal pages with others through my Flickr stream. This lead to being published in 1000 Artists Journals, by Dawn Sokol. I was thrilled and excited to be included along side so many others that shared my newly found passion for documenting their lives. I was just beginning to realize how many others were needing this sort of artistic expression. Soon after, I was approached, by the amazing duo Teesha and Tracy Moore, about submitting a workshop proposal to their upcoming art retreat Journalfest. I swallowed my fears and submitted what I had to offer. That was 2009.... I was hooked. I love being surrounded by like minded creative souls who have a passion for expressing themselves in the book format. Over time my journals have morphed, grown, and matured. I have continued to teach workshops as I am just as inspired by my students as they are from me. My Visual Journals have changed my life, saved my artistic self, and helped me to grow into the artist I am today. They are sacred to me, and a blessing I am thankful for. Through them I have been introduced to artists I never imagined I'd meet and converse with. Through them I have been able to bare my soul and document my "life story."

The past year or so, I've been approached by many individuals to offer online classes. Something I kept adding to my goals list, yet it kept getting pushed down the list as life events dictated more attention.  This past year, I have been embracing the mysterious ways that the universe has been working in my life, allowing those things that have been on my "wish list" to present themselves... and wow have the floodgates been opening!!!

I am excited to finally announce to all of you that the time has come for my first online class!! My popular workshop, The Savage Mirror, is going online!! But I wont be alone in this adventure! I am partnering with 20 other amazing souls to offer you an amazing visual journaling experience! I have joined the 21 Secrets visual journaling family for 2014!! 

Here is the information about The 21 Secrets!

21 SECRETS is celebrating it's fifth year of gathering talented, inspiring Artists eager to share their art journaling secrets with you in a BRAND NEW FORMAT that will make your experience with 21 SECRETS much more personal and in alignment with the rhythms of your own creative life!In other words.... YOU RECEIVE ALL 21 WORKSHOPS AT ONCE IN A DOWNLOADABLE eBOOK WITH UNLIMITED ACCESS! YOU KEEP THE VIDEOS, WRITTEN CONTENT & VISUALS!

With each 21 SECRETS membership you receive the following

    • A downloadable eBook that contains 21 art journaling workshops which include instructional videos, supportive content, and inspiring visuals by talented, professional Artists.  No longer do you need to login to a website or find your password--you can keep this eBook on your computer or iPad!

    • Unlimited access to all the workshops at once!  You pick and choose which ones you do when and go at your own pace!  There is no time limit--these workshops are yours to keep!

    • Membership to the private 21 SECRETS Facebook community and 21 SECRETS Flickr gallery where you can share your art work, be inspired by others, and receive warm, supportive feedback from other members and teachers.

    • The opportunity to learn a variety of art journaling approaches, techniques, and processes that will energize your creativity and touch your Soul.  

    • Be a vital part of a supportive, loving Artist online community that is going on it's fifth year and celebrates everyone's unique expression and supports all Souls in growing more confidant as Artists.

Even though the workshops don't begin until April 2014, TODAY is the Pre-Launch which means you can get it at a heavely discounted rate!!! Here is the breakdown of the pre-sale discounted prices:

$59 for buyers 1-50
$69 for buyers 51-150
$79 for buyers 151-300
$89 for buyers 301-500
after 500 members, the cost goes up to $98 so signing up early is going to be a lot more cost effective!!!

learn more about all the 21 Secrets instructors!!

Please note: Each instructor has an individual affiliate link, so when you sign up though my link above, I will get credit for that, which in turn is how I receive payment for working with you during this fantastic workshop.  Though, even if you choose to sign up through another instructor's affiliate link, we all benefit from having a full event... we are one big happy family over here!! I look forward to working with you in April!!

Monday, September 16, 2013

Postcards From Paris!!

In my last post I shared with you my dream of visiting Paris and Southern France. This is a a trip I have dreamt of since my early college years, a trip I never thought I would actually get to experience. Now that it is a reality and I will be stepping into this adventure in a few short days, I want to share with you what I have been working on to make this trip even more inspiring!

What I wish for is, to take you with me! I want to share this dream with all those that have supported me emotionally, creativity, personally, and professionally. I wouldn't be the woman/artist that I am without the loving support of ... my "tribe" ~ my people, my "ones" that keep me afloat in all areas of my life. All of you who have sent me words of encouragement and thanks. All of you who have seen me through my hills of joy and valleys of sorrow. Yes, you are my "tribe" and I feel blessed knowing that you are with me.

As many of you know, I almost never sell my original artwork. Mostly because the majority of the work I do is in my sacred journals, books that I couldn't fathom parting with. On occasion I offer up handmade reproductions of work from my journals, but never the originals. What original art I have sold is few and far between. It is still difficult for me to release my "babies" into the world to live in others' homes. They are so personal and hold a very real piece of me in them. Happily today, I am learning to release my grip and allow a few of these vulnerable ones to fly. The only way I know how to give a piece of myself is through my art. So I am offering my "Postcards from Paris" to you all. I know they each will carry a token of my gratitude and love in them, my offerings for you.

Sample "Postcard from Paris" ~ Front
Limited Edition "Postcards from Paris" Set in a collector's tin

I am so excited to share my long held dream with you! Thrilled to share my journey with you! I will be leaving for France on Friday, Sept. 20 (in just a few short days!), where I will stay in Paris for a week and then travel down to Southern France for a week with two amazing women/artists. During that time, I will be sketching, painting, journaling, and creating original artwork to share with you!

While traveling it will be easiest to take you with me via Facebook. 
So, I have set up a new FB page Here I will post ongoing images of our journey while in France. You will see me working on the original 12 "Postcards from Paris";  images of your personalized "Passport To France" as it travels with me over the next few weeks (but you must be quick, these are only available for the next few days); Also see the views that inspire me, take my breath away, and make me wish I could hunker down and spend months instead of days in the surroundings. Upon my return, I will continue to work on original art as my continued dream is to have all the original work together in a solo exhibit. On the Facebook page,  I will set up individual albums for the "Postcards from Paris" art, the "Original Art inspired by France," and images from my France Visual Journals so that you all can view the work online as it is happening.

Get Your "Passport to France" before the plane whisks me away!
Check the Facebook Page for images of your passport traveling through France

Finally! I have set up my Etsy account and have listed all the pledge levels and what each one offers. 

I know the next few days are going to be hectic as I pack and prepare for our journey, so keep touch through the Facebook "Postcards from Paris" page.
Sending you all lots of love from the heart!
~ Lisa

click on image to enlarge

Friday, August 23, 2013

dare to dream?

When I was young I dreamt a lot. I dreamt of living in the forest, inside hollow trees, like a fairy. I dreamt of driving my daddy's fast antique cars. I dreamt of designing my own home with a tower that had a view of the sunrise and the sunset. I dreamt of being brave. I dreamt of being liked by my peers.  I dreamt of learning how to make anything just like my dad. I dreamt of being talented like my mom. I dreamt of living by the ocean. I dreamt of being pretty. I dreamt of floating across the land in a hot air balloon. I dreamt of being an artist. I dreamt of rocking my small child to sleep. I dreamt of finding love. I dreamt of seeing far away lands. I dreamt of being able to write, sing, and dance with confidence. I dreamt of being passionate in all that I do. I dreamt of safe places to dream. 

I feel an immense gratitude that many of my dreams have unfolded and brought me on a journey far better than I ever could have imagined. I wake each morning knowing that I will spend many hours of the day doing what I love. I am loved by two fantastic kids, who unknowingly teach me how to be a better person. I have my tribe of friends, family, and creatives souls that bring me up and inspire me. Yet, I still have dreams. 

So many dreams. Some just fleeting thoughts. Some became distant memories, for I was told they were unrealistic due to lack of time, money, or priorities. I was told perhaps someday.... someday, when does someday ever really happen? 

For as long as I can remember, I have dreamed of traveling to far away lands. Then in college, the far away lands became the lands were the masters lived. I dreamed of seeing the incredible paintings, architecture, and sculpture created by the masters. To see even a small portion of the art from the history books would be amazing. What would it be like to walk the same streets, see the same sites, be inspired by and connected to artists from the past? Can you imagine!? Top of the list, Paris! I dreamt of traveling there right out of college with a group of artists. However, other life priorities came about and the dream of traveling to Paris was just another distant memory. Until a year ago. I met a artist who was planning on going to France, she invited me to go with her. I recall thinking at the time she was just dreaming, yet I was very excited at the thought of the dream. As the months passed, she continued to refresh the excitement. Could "someday" actually be a reality? There were so many naysayer thoughts jumping around in my head... "Is this even something I should consider? What about the time away? What about the money? Who is going to watch the kids? You are going to get lost in that big old city. What makes you think you deserve this?" Oh, so many critics giving reasons why I shouldn't do this... but, the door was open, I didn't want to walk away from it this time, so I took a deep breath and a leap of faith!! 

In one month, I will be fulfilling a lifelong dream!!! In doing so, the world has been opening up in ways I never imagined. I am so excited to share all this with you!! Stay tuned!!

: My question to you.... What is YOUR life long dream? Dig deep, it is there, still whispering to you. Do you dare still dream about it? Is it in the category of "someday"? What steps can you do to bring it out of "someday" and into reality? :

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