Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Holiday Market Fun!

One of my favorite seasons as an artist is fall. There are a lot of Holiday gift markets that go on and I love being part of them. My most recent was the Maker’s Market hosted at Mixson in Park Circle. I had a great time and made a good amount of sales. At this market in particular I was selling mostly to people who I don’t know. Being an artist, there is the fear at these things of… “Will anybody want to buy my stuff?”  When doing events for people I know I figure a folks will take pity on me and buy a journal or a print, but it’s a whole other ball game when trying to appeal to strangers.

The good news at the Maker’s Market was that I did well! I had a few friends who live in the area come out and support the team, but for the most part my sales were to those unknown.  I had a couple different people say they remembered seeing me at Parktoberest, a similar event in October and even one lady who had just seen a print of mine in a picture somewhere and was very excited to be able to purchase one. Being remembered felt awesome. I always hope that my table stands out and that people will like it enough to purchase something for a friend or loved one.

If you were present for the Maker’s Market you may remember a drawing I did for a free matted print. The winner of the free print is: Haywood Robinson. Congratulations! If you didn’t win but were hoping to get your hands on a print maybe as a Christmas gift, please visit my Etsy shop and use coupon code: MAKERSMARKET for 20% off everything in my shop.
This year in the Knight house we are trying to buy local and hand make a lot of our Christmas gifts. We have chosen this partly because funds are low and partly because of an email I was sent by my dad about the importance of supporting our country’s economy this holiday season.  If you’d like to join us on this mission you can support our local economy by purchasing from me J or any of the other awesome Etsy shops online.

Blessings to you and yours as Thanksgiving and Christmas approach, I pray it’s a joyful Holiday season for us all.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Creative Process: Our Journey

I recently completed a series called "Our Journey" that I showed in the Affinities art show a few weeks ago at our church. I'd like to share a little of the process of creating this series. If you didn't have a chance to see my series then that's the first order of business. Here is a link to view it.

So now you know our story...it has been a crazy journey to say the least. And I must first say that this series came straight from the Lord almost with a bow on it. In the middle of the night one evening shortly after we found out we would miscarry, I was lying in bed tired from crying all day and just frustrated with the Lord because he wouldn't let me go to sleep. Shortly after I woke up with these seven pieces in my mind. The titles were there and even a vague visual of what each piece would look like. I can say that the theme of the series of the peas was rooted out of something that came from our first loss. When you lose a baby dealing with it is tough, in part I think because by cultural standards it wasn't a life that ever came to be, so it's hard to mourn and share the loss with people who never knew of it. I never really recognized the life of our first loss and then one day I read my friend's blog who had just lost a baby. I was intrigued that she wanted to recognize the life. So I wanted to do the same with ours. I thought, maybe I will paint a picture for our precious one. Here is a picture of the first sketch of that piece. 
From this original sketch I think the Lord crafted the series. God is so good. It's almost as if the original sketch he gave me foreshadowed what was to come. It's not often that the I receive so clearly a piece of work from the Father, I'm certain not due to His lack of speaking but to my inability to listen. I always feel like God and his character are the inspiration for my work, but sometimes.....sometimes, God speaks and I am the recipient of his word. This was one of those times, thank you God. 
Once I received the pieces I then did a rough sketch of each piece as I normally would and began a few weeks later putting them on canvas. When you see the pieces you'll notice the texture and mixed media involved. I used a modeling compound to add the texture, which I put on first before any paint. The torn paper came in after I thought the first piece was done....it just looked kind of boring to me so I made a rash decision to add the paper and it worked. I often make decisions like that in my artwork, which reflects my personality...I'm a go with the flow kind of gal. I think this is my favorite series so far, but Robert says I always say that when I finish something new.

My favorite piece in the series is probably "The ones we've longed for". When i was writing our word to each of our peas I found myself falling in love with these children I've never met. I asked Robert, "Sweetie, how will we know who is who when we meet them?". He wisely said, "We'll know", like a grandpa full of experience and wisdom. It was somewhat nerving to write it all out, knowing that I could face the ridicule of some who think it's over the top or the actual possibility that we might not have four. But I'm not afraid, go big or go home right? I'm thankful I did it and thankful the Lord loves me for dreaming.

One thing I came away with from this series is that our trial has become a beautiful story only the Lord could write.  Although it has been a trying journey which is not over, it has shaped my life and our marriage in ways we could have never "made" happen. Thank you God for choosing us for this trial, may we come out giving you glory and staying faithful to you.

Friday, August 12, 2011

Finally...the Beginnings of a Shop

After talking about Creative Accountability last week, I am excited to say that my sweet Robert and I have had a productive week for WAMinistries!
By Saturday I was able to nail down a local printer and see some samples...they look awesome! We are working with Postnet in West Ashley, the owner Sharon is so sweet and I can already tell she'll be a pleasure to work with. I was surprised at how well they came out. Once that big part of actually finding a printer was done, Robert went hard to work at sizing my painting images and loading them up in my very own Etsy shop. I cannot say enough, how thankful I am for that man who organizes me.

(side note: I really feel it's so important when searching for a mate be sure to put effort into finding someone who balances you. My Robert and I are very different but if we were just alike nothing would ever get done.) LOVE HIM!

Okay, so as I was saying we finally have some prints up in the shop. You can see what's available here  there is also a direct link to my shop on the website. I've decided to offer the option of purchasing your prints pre-matted which will allow them to fit very nicely into an 11x14 frame. I've chosen standard sizing because as many of you know, having something framed can be really expensive. I hope these prints make a nice gift for someone you love, or simply bless your home! My question for you is: Is there a painting of mine that you know you'd like to see available in the shop? If so we, Robert will make it happen.

On a not so worky note, here's a picture of what I've been working on this week at my new house #1445Bexley! 

I am sewing some curtains for our big window in the living room. Super excited about the final result on these bad boys. Robert and I picked the fabric out together....I think I'm going to love them. Twitter pics to follow! Love to All.

Friday, August 5, 2011

Creative Accountability

Today I will share on the importance of having accountability for your creativity...simply because this is what the Lord is teaching me this week. It started last weekend when I had the opportunity to be a youth leader on a trip to the Motion Conference in Birmingham, AL. If you've ever been part of any youth camp or conference you know that it includes large amounts of junk food mixed with a lack of sleep. So on day two needless to say I was not feeling well. I began the day by telling my friends, "don't let me eat anything fried". I knew if I ate like the previous day I would be even sicker. So...we had a time of leader training where snacks were served and I picked up a yummy chocolate, peanut covered doughnut. To give you a picture of what I'm talking about:

When I walked over to chat with friends, one looked at me and said...isn't that fried? I simply chuckled and said yeah and brushed it off. Then, my second friend came up to me and asked, "I thought you weren't going to eat anything fried?". At that I walked over to the trash can and threw away the delicious barely eaten doughnut. Thinking back, I was actually surprised that the girls held me to my request, but at the same time I was thankful in the end because it was to my benefit to be held accountable.

By the end of the trip this food accountability translated into having these girls asking hard questions about my artwork and specifically my business. They asked me my goals and what I was working toward. This was so good for me because I am not great at staying accountable. As many times as I can ask Robert to keep be on task with my work, it's so easy to blow him off. But to have Stephanie and Jen (my now named: creative accountability partners), it is much tougher to tell them no.  I am so thankful the Lord has brought this epiphany to my mind once again. That it is in accountability that we are pushed to succeed to do our best and grow through the process.

I can proudly say that I am working to finish up my creative/art business task for the week. In fact these are my surroundings at the present moment.

I have been wanting to finally put something in my Etsy shop that has been open and empty for almost 6 months now. So we've decided to start by selling some prints of my artwork. My job this week was to find a place where I can have quality prints made of my work. I am close to nailing down a place and will do so by tomorrow for sure (as tomorrow is the last day of the week :)). And I will proudly email Stephanie and Jen to let them know of my progress!

So....accountability although trying and challenging at times is well worth the pay off when you meet your goal.

You can all keep me in line by asking how my Etsy shop is coming....my task for the next two weeks.

Love to all.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Follow the Way of LOVE

I wanted to share a little about a piece a just finished for some good friends of ours, Shawn and Dawn Leberknight. They recently celebrated their very first wedding anniversary and Shawn asked me to do a painting for Dawn as a gift. I graciously accepted the request and began planning. I must say that this is my favorite type of work to do. One where someone says, paint something for me, here is the theme, go for it. Some of you may say, "no way, how could I commit to paying for something when I don't know what it's going to look like?". However, this is when I feel my artistic creativity flow the most. I love starting with an idea and seeing where the Lord takes it.

The piece is based on 1 Corinthians 13, the LOVE chapter. This is such a great passage of scripture packed full of wisdom for life. Once before I created a painting around this passage of scripture for another couple. When Shawn asked me about this passage I automatically remembered the other piece I did.  Here's a picture of it:
When I started planning for Dawn's piece, I decided I wanted it to be different, not resembling my "Love is..." piece. I really wanted her picture to reflect who she is and represent her and Shawn. If you know Shawn and Dawn they are a friendly laid back pair. Specifically, Dawn is sweet and softspoken. After talking with Shawn about the piece we decided to  create something with a soft color palette and to work in some cut paper, as paper is the traditional anniversary gift for the first year. Here is an image of what I created for them:

I've called it "Follow the way of Love". When searching the scripture passage we selected, I found the first verse of 1Corinthians 14 and it stopped me in my tracks. It says, "Follow the way of love and eagerly desire spiritula gifts, especially the gift of prophecy". I just fell in love with this statement. After reading through the thirteenth chapter where Paul highlights all the aspects of love and what love looks like the next chapter begins with, "follow the way of love". God reminded me that He IS love, and so we must follow him in all that we do and how we treat others, especially when it comes to our life mate. It just fit.

To talk a moment about the process....this piece is acrylic on canvas with a little mixed media in it. When creating my work I almost always pull from photos. I was looking for some good images of birds. I decided on blue birds, I found a male and a female. The female is the bird looking to the audience, the male being obviously more vibrant in color. For the mixed media I added some pages from an old book called, "The Old Old Story". It tells the story of the Bible in novel form, it's really sweet. I used a matte finish Mod Podge to secure the paper to the canvas. I finished up the piece with some script. I used a Sharpie to do so. Sometimes I will paint my words on although this takes much longer and I often can't get the line quality I'm looking for.

Thanks for letting me share, I hope you all have a great week.

Saturday, June 4, 2011


Have you ever known that you were supposed to do something? And then before you know it time is passing and everything else is getting in the way of you doing what you know you are meant to do? You find yourself doing all things EXCEPT what you're supposed to be doing.

That is where I am right now.....I know I am called to be an artist and create. I know that I am called to share creative things with others and awaken that desire to create in their hearts. But I am failing miserably at my calling in this present moment.  It has been too long since I have made anything worth talking about. So why does this happen? I wish I had a brilliant answer, but for me it's a few things. First: we are about to move into our first home next week, so my surroundings presently are far from  creative. exhibit A:

Second: I have recently begun working part time for my church in admin....what? why would I ever do that, I don't know, but I am. So that is filling half of my week. And Third: I honestly believe I am the biggest excuse maker that The Lord ever loved.

I went for a walk this morning to clear my head, waiting for a revelation.....still waiting. I can only rest in the promise that the Lord's mercies are new every morning. While reading this a.m. I came across a favorite verse: Psalm 118:24

  While I wait on revelation I will rejoice in this new day. Regardless of my failings God has made this day and I am still here on Earth so I will rejoice!

I am not really great at making commitments....I am committed to God and, I am committed to Robert. I am sure I will stand on those, but when it comes to resolutions or turning a new leaf, I almost always fail. So I'm not going to make a commitment to create every day, but I WILL create today! I will take it one day at a time, knowing that I will fail some days. But I will rest in the fact that it does not change the Father's love for me.
"For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come,  Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord." Romans 8:38-39

Thank you God!

Monday, January 17, 2011

passion is essential

Yesterday I got to go to a monthly artist gathering through a group called artistonfire. It is led by the great Alex and Sara Radin, they are a lovely couple of artists here in Charleston. We watched a video of a pastor named Lance Wallnau and he spoke about taking our areas of work/passion for Christ. It was eye opening for me and a little over my head, but a few things stood out to me. One analogy he used was how a fish in captivity only grows to the size of the environment that it lives in...however in its natural habitat it will grow to its full capacity. He said we are like this in Christ....it is what we surround ourselves with that will affect our growth. What are you surrounding yourself with? It made me think that I do not take enough time to expand my personal learning of the Lord's character. It made me long to make my daily prayer such a priority for my day. Will we truly take hold of the dream God has given us and work with all our heart to achieve that dream?

He also said something that I think will stick with me for a long time. I'm not sure if I am getting this right but, "the person with the greatest passion will have the greatest effect on others". He used an illustration of how the homosexual population has truly had a large affect on our culture. Not because they have the greatest numbers (only 3-6% of our population) and not because their "passion" is pure or for the greatest cause, but because they spend so much time and effort working for their cause. They spend time reaching each element of our culture i.e. media, entertainment etc. As Christians we hold 35% of America's population...are we making a great impact? is our passion the greatest? I want to ask God how he wants us to move...not just reaching out to seekers in our church, but in each element of our culture. Especially in our areas of work and passion. How will I reach the artists of this world? What has God called me to do in this area?

I look foward to reading this book which is where the talk from Lance stems from.