Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Merry Christmas from Me to You

I found a great website a while back that lets you add all sorts of animations to your pictures and save them as animated gifs.  The site is LunaPic.com.  The site does not limit you to animated effects.  It actually offers a full range of effects that you might find in Photoshop, as well as a whole lot more. 

But it was the snowfall effect that caught my eye, so what better to do at this time of year than to add some snowflake frames and snowfall to some of my artwork?

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So take a break from the Christmas rush, pour yourself a mug of hot cocoa and enjoy these animations I created featuring the Christmas and winter-themed digital artwork I have made into greeting cards in years past, as well as some seasonal quotations. 

Each of the images I have shown here are available as Christmas cards on my artist website at JayneWilsonArt.com (without the animations, of course!)  I've put the direct links under each picture so you can stock up early for next year!

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“I love snow for the same reason I love Christmas: It brings people together while time stands still. Cozy couples lazily meandered the streets and children trudged sleds and chased snowballs. No one seemed to be in a rush to experience anything other than the glory of the day, with each other, whenever and however it happened.”  
Rachel Cohn - Dash & Lily's Book of Dares.

"Children Playing in the Snow" is available
as a greeting card at JayneWilsonArt.com

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Oh, jingle bells, jingle bells. Jingle all the way.
Oh, what fun it is to ride In a one horse open sleigh.
Jingle bells, jingle bells Jingle all the way.
Oh, what fun it is to ride In a one horse open sleigh.
James L. Pierpoint

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"Winter Sleigh Ride" is available as fine art prints and greeting cards

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"Snowmen fall from Heaven, 
One snowflake at a time"

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"Winter Cottage and Snowman" is available as a greeting card 

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"I love the excitement, the childlike spirit of innocence
and just about everything that goes along with Christmas." -- Hillary Scott

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"Watching for Santa" is available as a greeting card 

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"Christmas is not a time nor a season, but a state of mind.
To cherish peace and goodwill, the plenteous in mercy
is to have the real spirit of Christmas" -- Calvin Coolidge

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"The Snowman and the Curious Foal" is available as a greeting card 

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"Christmas isn't a season, it's a feeling" -- Edna Ferber

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"Bridge Over a Winter Stream" is available as a greeting card 

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"Snow falling soundlessly in the middle of the night 
will always fill my heart with sweet clarity" -- Novala Takemoto, Missin' (Novel)

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"Snowman in the Moonlight" is available as a greeting card 

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I hope you enjoyed the wintery scenes and quotations.  Now, if you have a little time and want to amuse yourself for a while, head over to Lunapic.com, upload a photo of your own and spend a little while playing around with various effects and animations.  Or, if you're caught up in the holiday rush, just bookmark the site to go back to later, when you have some time.

This will be my last post before Christmas, so I'd like to take this opportunity to wish you all a very Merry Christmas, or whatever holiday you celebrate at this time of year, and a Happy and Healthy New Year.

Saturday, December 10, 2016

Connecting with Local Artists

A few weeks ago I saw a notice in our local paper about a local art group, the Tomball Art League.

I was interested in learning about them because I was looking for a group close to home.  Houston is such a sprawled out city that any art event I would go to in Houston usually involved an hour or more drive time, one way.

I was a member of Spectra Artists in Houston for a while, but never went to any of the meetings as they were far away, and by the time I got home from work (often a two hour trek), there was no way I could get to them before they were over.

I didn't re-up my membership with Spectra Artists for 2016 since I wasn't working full time.

So I'm really excited to have joined up with Tomball Art League (TAL) and went to my first meeting today.

Since it's December, it took the form of a holiday painting party and gift exchange, plus everyone bought some snacks, so there was a wonderful spread of food.  

It was very enjoyable meeting local artists and after the business meeting, we were each given a 10 x 8 canvas, brushes, paints and a reference picture to copy.  And while we were painting, we also got on with the gift exchange and the white elephant exchange, which were great fun.

I got some lovely Christmas ornaments hand-made by one of the members, and my white elephant gift was some Tom Jones paintbrushes.

Here's my effort, the first acrylic painting I have done in over 30 years, lol.  

As I mentioned in my last post, I recently got my pastels out of mothballs and have been playing with them a little.  So the idea came to me to use the same reference picture we had used at the painting party, but this time see if I could produce a pastel version of it.

Here it is in progress, with the reference photo picture above it.

Here's it is, more or less finished.

It was just a quick, happy piece.  It was fun to do - I need to do more little studies like this.  I should remember to focus on what I see versus what I put on paper.  I noticed that my squiggle across the middle of the ornament is too squiggly compared wit the reference pic, lol. 

Here's a closer look at it. (As with the other pictures, you can click on it to see a larger version)

It's not great, but the more I practice, the more my observation will improve.