Twistangled

I didn’t realize this post was left as a draft! Life has indeed been crazy as we finished up our school year and began our summer school session. And some of the circumstances left me in a slump during which I simply focused on the extremely important and urgent things I needed to do. So it’s a been a while since this event which happened in January. I hope you will still enjoy reading about it and the photo I was able to catch during the trip.

Our family visited San Antonio, TX last month. We’d gone there to witness the graduation of the USAF TACP Eagle 100 class. My husband is part of Eagle 23 class. It was nice to see some positive changes in how the TACP tech school is done. There’s a fantastic graduation ceremony for those who pass the course, as well as a question and answer session for spouses and parents to get a general view of what their loved ones will be living once they join the career field.

When the graduation service was over, we walked out of the building and I saw this beautiful sleeping tree. The sky was extremely clear and the branches stood out so perfectly against that crystalline sky. I snapped a couple of shots with my cell and created this photo-manipulation. I added an overlay I created by using the fisheye mode on my cell to snap a blurred macro shot of a makeup sponge covered in soft pastels. The overall effect was pretty surprising and I’m really happy with the result. I hope you enjoy it, too! If you like what you see, please share this post. If you’d like to purchase a print or photo gift with this print on it, these options are only available on deviantArt for now. I’ll be uploading to Society6 and Redbubble as soon as possible.

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Almost Too Busy

I’ve been almost to busy to create art. Almost, but not quite! I still haven’t been creating at the speed I was last year but I’m convinced that’s just my way. I’m considering starting another home & family type blog since that’s where most of my energy is being devoted these days. One of my friends mentioned that she missed seeing my recipes on facebook. I do my best to avoid that site, so I think a blog would be an excellent alternative.

Here’s what I’ve been working on lately, mostly drawings these days, color coming from soft pastels and colored pencils. I love soft pastels! I love the effects you can create with them. I just need more work with them.

"Imagine Invent Explore" - drawing created by Melody Kittles - To purchase your print of this item, click the photo to go to my deviantArt page.

“Imagine Invent Explore” – drawing created by Melody Kittles – To purchase your print of this item, click the photo to go to my deviantArt page.

I started first with pencil, then inked over the lines. The balloon’s color comes from the colored pencils and I added color to the sky with the pastels. In this next one, I used ink and soft pastels.

"Changes" - drawing by Melody Kittles - If you'd like to purchase your own print of this piece, please click on the photo to go to my deviantArt page.

“Changes” – drawing by Melody Kittles – If you’d like to purchase your own print of this piece, please click on the photo to go to my deviantArt page.

This piece is very organic…it’s a vine…or a tree…or just some random leaves and twigs…leaves a lot open for the imagination. My husband says he really likes this one.

If you like either of these pieces and would like to have a print of your own, you can click on the photos to go directly to my deviantArt page, where you can choose from a variety of items sporting my prints. They’d make nice holiday gifts!

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An Almost-Dream

Our internet will be off on Friday so I want to try to post up until that day, as long as I have something to share. I hope you will enjoy this.

"An Almost-Dream" - photo by Melody Kittles, edited in Gimp - If you're interested in purchasing a photo, art print, or photo gift, or if you just want to know more about this picture, please click on the photo to go to my deviantART page.

“An Almost-Dream” – photo by Melody Kittles, edited in Gimp – If you’re interested in purchasing a photo, art print, or photo gift, or if you just want to know more about this picture, please click on the photo to go to my deviantART page.

A New Year, A New Practice, And A New Artwork

Happy New Year!

I’m sure you’re wondering what I’m talking about. We are dropping our home internet access. I still have internet through my phone, but it will be limited. I’ll post as I’m able and as the app allows. Sometimes the WordPress app glitches. Even so, I know my posts will not be regular (not that they have been lately, but…) I do want my readers to know I will continue to post as I’m able. At the very least, I can say that when I do post, it will most likely be on Saturdays, unless we are traveling. I want to spend more time with my family and not be so heavily reliant on the internet.

My newest art piece is a straw painting done in ink and acrylics. For more information, or to purchase a print or art gift, please click the photo to go to my deviantART page.

"Spring Half-Dreamed" - artwork by Melody Kittles - Please click the photo for more information, or to purchase a print or art gift.

“Spring Half-Dreamed” – artwork by Melody Kittles – There’s a nymph hidden in there, helping the tree bloom. Can you find her? I was totally surprised to find her there! Please click the photo for more information, or to purchase a print or art gift.

It is my hope and prayer that each of my readers will have a happy and prosperous 2015. See you later!

Black and White Photo

My husband, John, is the photographer in our house but I like to take snapshots and edit them on my cell. I just have fun with it and don’t intend to make a career out of it like he is doing. We are also certified storm spotters and we take as many opportunities as possible to check out storms in our area and keep and eye on what they’re doing.  I do admit to being fascinated by lightning, charmed by thunder, and mesmerized by cloud formations. As we were following a couple of storm cells in our area, John found an excellent place to stop and this tree was right there, begging to be photographed. 🙂 You can see John’s photo of the tree (a much better quality, and a panoramic photo, as well!) on his post for today, by clicking here. So, without further ado, here’s my photo.

Isn't this the perfect set-up for a stark black and white photo? I thought so... I took this photo with my cell and edited it with the Pixlr Express app. If you'd like to download this photo for personal use, you can do so from my deviantART gallery.

Isn’t this the perfect set-up for a stark black and white photo? I thought so… I took this photo with my cell and edited it with the Pixlr Express app. If you’d like to download this photo for personal use, you can do so from my deviantART gallery.

“Antarctica is otherworldly, like nothing I’ve ever seen before. Stark, cold, beautiful desolation.” ~ Mark Hoppus

Uplifting, Inspiring, Creating

The last few days have been great for my creativity. I have been inspired to create new artwork. I’ve been able to have fun with my art. Even in all that, I still need to read and hear uplifting things. Even in the times when I am able to have fun with my art, at least during this time in my life, I need to hear words of encouragement. So I thought I’d share a few with you. I was working at my part-time job for most of today and working on a play during the evening hours so there wasn’t any time to add more to the newest mixed media piece. I know what my next step will be, though, and I’m really excited about it! I can’t wait to add it to my piece. These quotes seemed most appropriate for my mood today. I know these things already but reading them, saying them aloud, really helps me keep moving forward. I hope they’ll encourage someone else, too. 🙂

“I remember a time when it felt like nothing could go right. The whole world appeared to be teamed up against me. But I kept on moving forward, even when I couldn’t tell exactly where I was going.” (I don’t know who said this. The website just had it posted this way.)

“Go confidently in the direction of your dreams.
Live the life you have imagined.”
-Henry David Thoreau

“When you feel like giving up,
remember why you held on for so long in the first place.”
-unknown

I took this photo with my cellphone and used the Pixlr-O-Matic app to edit it.

I took this photo with my cellphone and used the Pixlr-O-Matic app to edit it.

Theater Costume Project

I’m working on a tree costume for Starshine. She’s going to be a disgruntled and morose British tree in a children’s play later this month. I’ve been working on her costume for a while now. This time, I’m pacing myself, being sure to take time for important things and time to rest. The elements I needed to include were a trunk, leaves, a bird’s nest, and baby birds that move.

For the trunk, I chose a brown stretch knit fabric that had a nifty pattern and lots of glitter. (This is Fairytale Land, after all!) I didn’t have a pattern in the style I wanted. So I had to create one from scratch. I had Starshine lay down on some brown packaging paper and traced out her body lines. I marked where her knees were because I wanted a very straight dress with a flair at the bottom…like a tree trunk and its root base. The sleeves I kept as small a diameter as possible but made them longer than her arms so she could cover her hands with the fabric. I couldn’t make the dress have a turtleneck like I wished. So instead, I cut out a simple head cover out of the leftover fabric that will cover her hair and neck.

For the leaves and treet0p, I created a leaf garland out of green sequin dot fabric and beading wire. It’s light-weight and should make very nice foliage. I’ll attach it to a brown, floppy-brimmed hat we used to use for our SCA events. I’m still working on how to extend some of the leaves out in many directions without making the hat top-heavy.

For the bird’s nest, I’m going to make an overly large scrunchy out of burlap and decorate it with twine and twigs and maybe some leaves. I wanted her to have complete mobility of her hand and not have to worry about the nest falling off during the performance.

The baby birds were a bit of a challenge. I thought right away to use a glove but how to make the fingers look like believable baby birds was another matter entirely! I ended up gluing lots of brown craft feathers to the fingers, enough to cover the color of the glove (though, I did use a black glove). I cut somewhat large triangles out of bright yellow felt and glued those to the tips of the fingers. The audience should have a nice view of those yellow beaks. I have a photo of the baby bird glove that I can share with you today.

Baby Birds for Tree Costume

Baby Birds for Tree Costume ~ The dress fabric is in the background and the burlap I’m using for the nest is wrapped around the bottom of the glove. It’s still just a piece of fabric right now but tomorrow should see it form into more of a scrunchie nest. 🙂

I still have a good bit of work left to do on this project but it’s coming along quite nicely! I hope you’ve enjoyed this update. I’ll share more photos as the project progresses. If you’re in the area and would like to see the play, it will take place at the Eunice Players Theater in Eunice, LA on June 25-28 @ 7 pm and the matinee performance will be on June 29 @ 2 pm.

Acting is like a Halloween mask that you put on.”  ~River Phoenix