* Carmen Beecher * Cindy Michaud * Carol Schiff * Denette Schweikert * Donna Vines * Mary Warnick * Kathy Garvey *Fay Picardi * Jean Thomas

Sunday, June 30, 2013

Still Learning Adobe Creative Suite 6 when along comes CC!

by Kathy Garvey

Last year I made a leap from my Creative Suite CS3 to the wonderful CS6. I only really use Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign and Acrobat. But, the online suite for $29.99 a month gave me access to everything else Adobe I could possibly want.

Thing is, here it is almost a year later and I'm still studying and learning my four chosen tools. And, yes, now Adobe has come out with "CC" which is the planned future for their suite of tools - you sign up, they keep upgrading, you keep getting the latest and greatest.

They're already great. I can hardly stand it! I'm still trying to use all the cool things in CS6 and now I have so much more! The good news is that for over a year I've had the fear that my monthly fee would go up drastically when my year was up. Not so. With CC, since I already have CS6, I only have to pay $20 a month. An actual reduction. Who says big companies don't have a heart!

I haven't gone to CC yet, I'm waiting for the forums to calm down a bit. A few people are having problems with some of the features not working as expected. In the meantime, I'm having fun with CS6. (And watching a lot of free tutorials on all the new stuff. If you haven't ever gone to "CreativeLive" check it out.) Attached are just a few of my week's CS6 Illustrator and Photoshop efforts. If you're in the Melbourne area and ever want to get together and talk Adobe Creative Suite, let me know. I'm thinking a User's Group would be a nice thing to start up again. We used to have one in the area.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Black & White & Red All Over Show

Monday was an exciting day for the group.  That was the day we hung our show at the King Center for the Performing Arts in Melbourne.  This was our first big show in a long time and to get the lobby of The King Center was quite a coupe for us (thank you Cindy). 
When we first started talking about doing a show again, I think it was during one of our retreats after the second bottle of wine had been opened, we really wanted a theme.  I am not quite sure, but I think it had to do with the black and white clay earrings we made for our Christmas sale, which everyone loved, that we thought black and white would be unique.  Somehow the red came in a little later, maybe after the third bottle was opened.  (Don't forge there are 8 of us) and Black and White and Red All Over was born. 
We decided that everyone would do their own thing and we would compare notes and offer suggestions as we got closer to our show date.  Once again I was blown away by how different everyone's ideas were. We all really went with what appealed to us and I think that is what makes the show so unique and so interesting.  Once we had all of our works done Fay volunteered to set up a diagram with our various pieces.  She did a mock up of the King Center lobby and arranged all of our pieces by size and theme.  It was wonderful, I do not know what we would have done without it.
Kathy did some research into a way to let everyone know the theme of our show and who we were and came up with a wonderful banner that says it all.

Ta Da!!!!

Here are a few examples of our different pieces

This is a small selection of one of the walls

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Off Shore Storm, 6x8 seascape, Carol Schiff Studio

  The other day my husband and I went for a walk on the beach.  Although it was sunny when we left home, ten minutes later black clouds were rolling in over the waves.

Purchase here

The clouds had not yet completely obscured the horizon leaving a strip of aqua sunlight on the sea.

When I came home, I went straight to the easel, painting this from memory.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Cathedral Rock, 20x20 Oil on Canvas

I love Sedona, Arizona, and I especially love this spot. The river is so beautiful, and Cathedral Rock towers majestically over it. We had a week's worth of adventures in Sedona, and there are many more trails that we didn't see. I believe we need more of Sedona. No wonder they talk about vortexes there. It's really an other-worldly, magical place.
posted by Carmen Beecher

Sunday, June 16, 2013

GREEN WAVE and other news

My husband retired recently, and we find ourselves walking on the beach quite regularly these days.  I always take my camera because you never know when that perfect scene will be spread out at your feet.  On these days I go without it, I always see multiple "perfect scenes".

90 + 6.50 in USA

Purchase here
I have to remind myself, that seeing the perfect scene, and getting an image of it are two different things.  Usually, when I look in my viewfinder, the sun is in my eyes, or some such distraction, and I just click away in frustration, unable to see what I am pointing at.

I enjoy the trip again when I return home and download the images.  Usually I find at least a few that have possibilities.

I am sure by now all you plein air painters are horrified, but I have always been a studio painter and always will be.  I did TRY to do plein air, but  find it is a whole different ballgame.  I have great respect for anyone who can climb a mountain with a 36x48 canvas strapped on his back.......just cannot see me doing it!

On another note, I have thrilled to announce that I am the winner of not one, but TWO killer give a-ways!
If you are not familiar with Charleen Martin, I urge you to hop right over to her blog.  She does the most interesting and delightful mixed media pieces around.  At the moment, she is recovering from a shoulder injury and is showcasing her most unique jewelry making skills.

She sent me the most wonderful set of her note cards showcasing her fabulous collage works.  Thank you so much Charleen.  I will enjoy sending this out and I know my friends will be thrilled to receive them.

I also entered a little contest on Dreama Tolle Perry's blog.  She was showcasing her new book..."Be Inspired.....Adventures for the Heart".  She asked readers to post their most inspired saying and then selected the ten she liked the most.  Imagine my surprise when she posted my name as one of the winners.  She sent each of us a copy of her book. Click on her name above for a link that will take you to a page to order her book, or download a copy.

Enjoy the day.........

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Figurative Pastel Painting, "I Have a Dream...."

I was notified a few days ago that my painting "I Have A Dream" has been awarded "Best of Show" in the May challenge at CFAI.com.

Purchase here

I'm thrilled to have this honor.

Several years ago, before cell phones etc, I was attending an Easter egg hunt when these two darling babies  suddenly embraced.  I was lucky enough to have a camera pointed in their direction at the right time.  When I saw the image, all I could think about was Martin Luther King's famous speech.


Monday, June 3, 2013

Watch this Space: We have a show at the King Center coming up!

The Pieces of 8 are scheduled to exhibit a sampling of our art created for "Black and White and Red All Over" at the Maxwell King Center from June 24th to July 29th. We'll keep you posted on viewing hours and the exhibit itself. Here's our banner for the show printed at Spoonflower!(That's Denette and Carmen holding it up!)