Monday, January 16, 2012

Back to Painting!!!

Well, it just goes to show, when you don't do something for a while, you can get pretty rusty:)

I haven't sat down and really painted on canvas for quite a while.  I was painting on fabric, making my little fabric quilt girls, and got quite used to that.  It's a bird of a different feather though, getting back to acrylic on canvas.

Anyhow, I worked all day yesterday and today, and have this half finished piece to show....he's actually more than half finished...he's very close  to done, but I still have some tricks up my sleeve for him!!!!

Almost finished clown, January 16, 2012

Hope to have him finished soon and will definitely be posted on here when he is!!!  Have a great day...and a creative day!!!


Friday, January 13, 2012

A Lesson in Public Relations for the Artsy and Crafty!!!

Hi there!  Thought I'd share some things with you I have recently gleaned from my interactions with other area businesses.  It just goes to show, it's ok to screw up, we all do----it's what happens afterwards that counts.

Some of my goodies.

This lesson is about selling goods to local businesses.

1.  Always Begin by Getting to Know the Owner and Employees

I cannot stress this enough!!!  It is the foundation upon which your working relationship will be built, so make it good:)  You are going to be trusting these people with your inventory, so you need to get to know them.  Even if you have to stop back in on several occasions to find a little time when they are not too busy, it will be well worth your making the effort. 

2.  Don't expect them to be more organized than you are.  What does this mean?  It means that you need to take complete responsibility for your items by:

a.  Gathering your goods
b.  Pricing your goods
c.  Making a detailed list of all items, a contract, a copy for your records and one for them.  Take both and have them sign off on yours and you sign off on theirs.  Then you will have a specific file for this info in your file cabinet/drawer.
d.  Securely pack the materials
e.  Make any materials needed to provide a description of items that need one (little cards that stand in front of a statue of a goddess....who is she, what does she mean, what will she do for you)
****Don't expect the people who work in or own the store to know about these items just because you do:)
f.  If possible, help in the display process....if you have things that might make your merchandise stand out etc, then don't be afraid to suggest ways to display your stuff.  Also with this, you should check back often (if just in the begining months) to make sure they are not hiding your items behind bunches of other stuff.  Be nice and gentle and try to get your items moved to a better location....try to make them think it's their idea...and always be nice. 

3.  Stay in Regular Contact---don't go too long between visits/calling and checking in with the location.

Keep a file for all your locations and keep your paperwork in it.  Make sure to note owner and employee names and slight description to help you with getting to know them. 
Now, you can also keep a smaller book in your vehicle....put:

Sticky tabs to mark the different locations, leave several pages of room for each location then;

Location Name
Owner, co-owner, employees and tiny description of them

Then underneath write the date when you stop by and any merchandise you leave.  Always do this no matter what print outs they may give you.  Keep all notes here about what's selling, what you need to bring back, new items you might be able to make for the location.  These things are easy to forget later and only take a moment to jot down.  Taking good care of business at the time, will save you loads of time, worry, and confusion later. 

4.  Finally, keep it fresh.
If something's not moving in one location, try it at another.  Moving things around, and bringing in new product will help insure more sales and a better relationship with the location.

To Walk with Grace....

In the cactus garden, Phoenix, AZ.

In another edition of "The Art of..." series, today we are examining the Art of Walking with Grace. 

Yes, often times it's much easier to find the beauty and grace in a plant than in some of our fellow man.  We all have days where things don't go right and we get a little frustrated....we all have days where we're just off.  And you know what, that's ok.  We are only human, we will continue to make mistakes til our deaths because of it, but our best choice is always to come back to the thought of, "I walk with grace through this life."  Does that mean you are expected to be perfect?  Absolutely not.  What is does mean, is that when you screw up, you are the first to admit it, own to it (take responsibility for it), sincerely appologize for it...and move on.  It means that as you apporoach each situation in your life, you do so with kindness and consideration. 

It is easy and petty to dig into another's psyche and pick away wherever you may find fault, while it is sometimes difficult yet uplifting to find what is right and good about this person or situation and dwell in the possibility of that.  In fact, the more you change your attitude and see the positive, the good, what's right about others, the more naturally at ease you will become with doing it.  It will have become a good habit.  And you will be weaving the tapestry of your life with harmony and style (no more big bump and lumps!!!)

So today, remember:  Grace will get you there with ease and beauty, don't fight the river, flow with it.

Take care and have a gorgeous day wherever you are!!!


Thursday, January 12, 2012

The Art of....Learning a Lesson.

(((First, a little background:  Having always loved to write, and wanting to do something to affect a positive change in this world, I have decided to do a group of articles (if you will) entitled, "The Art of...," because I believe there is an art to living life well, and I believe I have something to offer to myself and others in this process of discovery and actualization.)))

The Art of ...Learning a Lesson

I find myself at the age of 41, just starting to wise up and listen to my life, to hopefully, finally learn the most important lessons....though I feel I should have learned them long ago.  Will it help to focus on that last fact?  No.  That's lesson #1:  Focus on the positive!!! 

It's a choice we make every single moment we are alive in everything we do.  When faced with negativity, in any form, it is always better for us to dwell in the positive.  Yes, there will be times where there is grief and distress, but if we have cultivated the habit of dwelling in the positive, we will be able to come through any situation more quickly, more easily, than we would otherwise be able to do.  Negativity is a ride that takes you on a downward spiral until you eventually end up in a bottomless pit.  There is nothing good that can come from it.  Once you realize this, it's easy to see that the path of growth lies in being an agent for the positive. 

Now, that being said, I know that everyone is different.  We have different circumstances, different body chemistries and so forth.  I myself have had a long standing relationship with depression, and I know only too well the toll it can take on one's life.  So....that leads us to
Lesson #2:  To live your best life, you must take care of your HEALTH!

So give yourself what you need to grow!!!

The less you take care with yourself, the worse you will feel, the worse your outlook on life, the more you will hide away, the less you will interact with the world, the emptier your life will be.

Yes, it's all so easy to say, and easy to understand.  Then why do we have such a hard time remembering and adhering to this principal?  Because we are out of balance.  Things have happened and we have been thrown off center.  Some of us are just slightly  out of balance...we hit a small rock on our skateboard, wavered, but caught ourselves before we ditched out.  Others of us hit a giant pot hole, lost all control, went flying up into the air about 3 feet, and landed in the only pile of rocks to be seen anywhere on the path.  In our haze of delirium, we wander and stumble around in pain, medicating our wounds with the temporary relief of poisons, all the while making a bigger and bigger mess.  Then we draw others into our mess...and no matter how few people we think we are harming....the world is a lesser place for the fact we are not wholly engaged with one another in it. 

Yes, everything we think and do...EVERTHING...has an effect on everyone else, the planet, the cosmos....everything else.  We have a collective consciousness and what we do on a personal level effects EVERYTHING that is. 

So what is the answer then for those who are most out of balance...those who can't see the forest for the trees?  Baby steps to balance.  Think about the things you've done in the past that have made you feel more balanced...was it yoga, meditation, walking in the park/garden/on the beach, getting some exercise, eating more fruits, waking up earlier in the morning, getting a good night's sleep.  Now start to implement the one that you think would do you the most good.  Don't pressure yourself, just do it.  That one thing...each day, a couple times a week, whatever.  Then see if you notice a difference.  Keep trying until you do notice a difference and let that good feeling propel you further in your quest for balance.

So...I have to get to 'living it' today!!!  I'll be back later with more little gems for you and for me, and until then, try to do just one thing this week that will add more balance to your life....and reflect on being positive in all you do and say:)  It'll make you a happier person, I guarantee!!!!

My Best,

Cynthia, OriginalCynDesign

Friday, January 6, 2012

A Good Night's Sleep

Resolution #3 - A Good Night's Sleep!!!

Hi there!  I'm still on the 'doing better' train:)  However, my sleeping is way off!!!  I think that at the heart of it, it's just another bad habit I've adopted that must be squelched!!!  So....I'm going to start doing some things to hopefully help me out!
Sleep is so completely important to our overall health, but it's something that is rarely considered.  In fact, good sleep will help you begin your day with a running start, whereas bad sleep (or little sleep) will put you at a deficit from the git go!!!

There are a myriad of things one can do to help improve their sleep, and/or get to sleep easier.

1.  Exercise
2.  Get up at a decent 8am.
3.  Try not to nap
4.  Do your nightly 'routine' (shower, face wash, brush teeth...all of that) a couple of hours before laying down to sleep. 
5.  Rid your bedroom of any and all lighting (digital lights, etc.) want it BLACK IN THERE!!!  If you have a digital light clock...set it and put a t-shirt over it.  Or get a good sleep mask.
6.  Rid your sleep area of any pesky noises that might keep you awake.
7.  Make sure you have a comfortable temperature in your room, get a fan or extra blankets, whatever you need to be completely comfortable.
8.  If you have issues with your back, or matress, you may want to invest in a new one, and perhaps try out a feather bed topping for your matress.  I used to have one, and I never wanted to get out of that bed:) 
9.  Get in the bed at least an hour before you want to be asleep, turn off the tv 1/2 hour before you wish to be asleep. 
10.  If you've tried all this and still have trouble, check into some melatonin from your local health food store.  It's something that occurs naturally in the body, and yours may be a little low!

These are some of the tips and tricks I could think of, if you have some good ones, please add them here in the comments!!!

Take care, I'm off to actually do some artwork, for it has been waaaaaaaaaaaaaayyyyyyy tooooooo looooooong!!!!  I'm going into artsy/craftsy dt's!!!!

Have a wonderful weekend, all my best as always!!! And hey, take care of yourself, there's only one you and WE NEED YOU IN THIS WORLD!!!


Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Organizational Update!!!

Well, it's MIDNIGHT and I've been at it all day long...pretty much for 12 hours!!! 

For all the ladies out there....I just cleaned out the wreck that's been in my bathroom cabinets for a while!!!  It's so clean and organized's beautiful, gorgeous, amazing!!!  And I threw out all the things I never use, yay!!!  I can't begin to tell you how great it feels to have organized closets, cabinets, drawers....clean doors, windows, and surfaces....everything tidy, fresh and neat!!! 
 A little shelf I bought long ago at the Salvation Army, repainted, hung in the bathroom with my Kandinsky set on top!!!  Love it!

Bath salts in a clear vase accent a corner:)
I've also been screwing in all the loose screws, fixing the wobly door knobs...all those little things that nag at a person, every day.

So, I'm tired, but it's a good tired.  I'm sick of cleaning, but I am also pleased with the results and inspired to press on.

P.S.  I juiced today!!!  I believe whole-heartedly in the power of juicing...the juice of raw, fresh fruits and vegetables full of enzymes, vitamins and nutrients....the true building blocks of health and wellness. 

Good night now all, how your day was as golden as mine:)

Original Cyn

Still Cleaning, But Starting to TCB, too!!!

So, Resolution #2 - 'Takin' Care of Business'

Yes, my oh yes, the cleaning is taking an inordinate amount of time....because there is so much sorting to be done.  But the trick is to concentrate on the final goal.  Heck, I'm even doing a little redecorating in the mix!!!

And with the continuation of the cleaning, I am taking care of important business that I'd rather put off til the end of the world.  Today's business concerned a doctor's appointment and a dental appointment.  Next, nagging bills/disputes, trying to get money from people who have sold my products but failed to pay as of yet, finding out about getting my masters in teaching...and some other similar stuff. 

It can be overwhelming, beginning an overhaul (if you will) of one's life.  But the sooner you start, the sooner you'll be in a much better place, living the life you deserve:) 

P.S.  Also playing Vivaldi in the studio today.  No tv + Vivaldi = Mellow Me!!!  And it's really nice.  I cannot truly concentrate and focus on the tasks at hand with that tv constantly going, and don't like how addicted to it I have become.  It's developed into a bad habit.  And I was just learning the other day from the great and wise Dr. Phil, that you have to replace a bad habit with a good one, preferably, one that incompatible with the other.  Like, chewing your nails and taking up knitting.  You can't do one while you do the other = incompatible.

Just one more thing to chew on while we embark on changing our lives!!!

 Ok, one step at a time, on moment at a time, one day at a time!!!

All My Best,

Monday, January 2, 2012

Happy New Year!

Starting the year off right!!!! 

Well, I am not that big on resolutions, because they always seem like empty air.  However...I've been in the spirit this New Year, of cleaning and clearing away all the excess in my life.  That is really such a great way to say it, because that's what I mean in every aspect.  Thus, it is in this spirit that I am making some resolutions....ones I actaully want to do and believe I can and will follow!!!

So what are these resolutions?  Maybe they're more like a list of things....

1.  Clean out a large portion of clutter.  ie...things that haven't been used in years and years need to go. As a mixed media artist, I have accumulated so many things.  And now that I have focussed my artwork more, the need is there to get rid of a lot of things that just prevent me from getting more done.  You know, every time I have to look through a bunch of stuff to find one thing....I'm wasting my life essence!!! 

And so it goes for everything in our homes and lives.  Let's gather the things we don't use, and we truly know we won't use...and give it to someone who will benefit, right?  Why not?  Why let those cans of food go out of date, why struggle through mounds of clothes every day trying to find the few that fit, why shuffle around all the "whatever it is" that's cluttering up your life when u could simply give it away to others who will be able to benefit?  So this is the resolution.  There is so much STUFF in my HOUSE that I just can't  be bothered with anymore.  It's stuff I'm hoarding (you could look at it that way, cause there's not the room) and it's not getting used!!!!! 

So on this one resolution alone, I have cleaned out my studio closet, ready to give a bunch of fun stuff to artists I've connected with here in Virginia Beach, ---a bunch of books which have just been collecting dust for years....I love my books and still have a bunch, but wow it felt great to re-organize them all and let go of so many that others will benefit from.  Next, my tiny bedroom closet.  I segregated the clothes and stored them away, threw some away, saved some for sewing projects, and donated the rest. 

For another fun piece to the organizing of my life, I cleaned off my old computer (just got a new one, but u don't need a new one for this cleaning exercise), transferred the pertinant files to the new one....and gave the old one to my hubby---which, it seemed destined for the dump b4 Christmas, and after my own overhaul of cleaning it working like a dream!!! 

I still plan on cleaning off a ton of photos that are not necessary in the near future...I take a lot of photos for my ETSY shop, blog, etc....and there ends up being an extraordinary amount of junk left over.  I then get caught up in whatever and do not bother to clean it out.  Which, leads to more time spent sifting through photos when I really need waste of my precious time. 

Lesson Learned:  Clutter Devalues Your Precious Life!!!!!  

Detach from material things....all that comes can go...and oh so swiftly.  Once you start to clean and clear your life and your will immediately find more peace.  More to come on life lessons and resolutions.

Much love,