08 August 2009

inspired self portrait

donna downey is a craft artist goddess. i haven't followed her story from the beginning, but ever since i found her blog i have been smitten with her.

she does these posts called "Inspiration Wednesday." {told you, she's a goddess} a couple of wednesdays ago, for week 5, she posted this as her project. (go see it, for real) in my opinion, its sort of a self-portrait reflection: beautiful, fresh and right on. she explains in her post what techniques she uses, and though i didn't go the exact same route, i did an inspired project of my own last week thanks to her brilliance!

this piece was made on a piece of 9x6 sturdy cardboard, something that was {literally} laying around. paul gifted me this song "the gardener," by the tallest man on earth. it was so darling, people. i was having a crummy day at work, and he delivers his ipod tuned to this song and a red hot roasters iced coffee. yes please. he is darling. the lyrics are paul in song form...

"so now we're dancing through the garden,
and what a garden i have made.
i won't be lying when i tell you that
i'm a gardener of a man
in your eyes baby."

oh yes, yes, a gardener, its so perfect for paul. the way his committed and sincere love nurtures and grows me. so as a response to his ultimate loving nature, and that gesture, i created this piece as a gift to him. it was my inspired reflection of how much his tilling and planting and weeding and work had grown me.

so here you can see the whole image, and some of the detail shots. be sure to click on the images, they will show up "life size" (not too scary, i promise)...some tips from my project:
  1. start with a solid background that will let your accent colors be...accent colors. don't compete. (unless you're into that)
  2. a beautiful plant turned into a headdress: how perfect. get creative with details. work outside of the lines you've imagined. find your reflection in the unknown objects.
  3. think abstract: i made flowers out of golden fluid acrylics, acrylic paint and glitter. i didn't know how dark or how light they would dry, but in the end, they turned out beautifully. also: i added the lace paper to the bottom and i think it worked to add color, texture and focus. some hambly rub-ons in the top right corner are always a favorite focal point!
  4. scavenger hunt: i'll say it, "the buttons are vintage," and you'll believe me. but seriously, they are! and they were just in my craft box, waiting for the perfect moment! they work so well with the colors; they are textured and a bit funky! i chopped off the back of the flower buttons and used a nail file to flatten out the surface. worked perfectly!
  5. choose a photo that is both timeless and festive: this pic was taken spur of the moment, but it spoke to me about the real me. lighthearted, fresh, mascara only me. when the picture is casual, the piece just pops!
  6. finally, i hung it with a plate hanger on his inspiration board. as you can see, my paper goods dominate his board, but i figured this was an important one to put front and center ;)
if you take a few hours to do a reflective, inspired self portrait, (and i really encourage you to do so, whether you're gifting it or not) find space within yourself to see what you see. to reflect on a theme in your life. to call out some courage and an abundance of joy. feeling so inspired and so grateful for inspiration. go get it folks, there is so much to be had!


donnadowney said...

you rock!!!

Ferd said...

this is fantastic... what I think I like the best is that you have your senior HS picture on your cork board?! that is hilarious stepho!!!

facebook photos said...

Stephanie I am very proud of you for Doing what you enjoy and sticking with, and for letting Paul know how you feel about him. You have a wonderful gift. Cheers from England