Monday, October 29, 2012

Meditation and Mandalas

Hi Everyone! I'm Beth - one of the new kids on the IA block and this is my first time hosting a challenge and I am so excited to be here! So let's get started... As this time of year has everyone focusing on fall and all the fun and beauty it represents I thought I would take us for a walk down a slightly different path this week.

Our new challenge at Inspiration Avenue for this week is meditation and mandalas.  Through the act of making a personal mandala the meditative process which ensues helps calm the mind and some would say helps one on their journey of seeking wholeness in their life. There is no doubt as to the beauty found in mandalas, which in and of itself can be calming to the heart and soul. This is not a religious act but rather a spiritual quest for finding happiness and completeness from within. So, come along this week and discover a new practice...

Explore the magnificent patterns and textures. Rejuvenate and invigorate your mind!


"A Mandala is considered a Sacred Circle. It's the focal point that symbolizes our spirit,
which, like the circle, has no beginning or end.

Mandalas embody the transcendental qualities of the Ineffable --
the metaphysical principles from which the Universe is made.

The Word Mandala is thought to have been brought to European culture around 1900 by Dr. Carl Gustav Jung. Mandala means circle and community in the ancient Indian language, Sanskrit.  Doctor Jung felt that his personal Mandala was much more than a geometric shape; he thought the Mandala represented the archetypal symbol of wholeness. The Mandala has existed throughout history in almost every culture's mythology and teachings of spirituality. The doctor used Mandalas to help his patients uncover insights about their inner life and true nature".
(excerpt from
If you are interested in further study of the mandala there are many wonderful websites out there for reference.  Just hop into Google and type in "mandalas". 
Mandalas can be whatever you want them to be - they actually remind me a lot of Zentangles in that both are meditative processes - no matter what else they are being created for. Following are some beautiful examples that I pulled from Google images to give you a little "inspiration." As you can see mandalas range in design from the extremely complex to the more simplistic, and even some that are quite whimsical!

So, come join us this week on our mandala journey.
All you need is a piece of paper, a plate or something round to draw your beginning circle onto the paper, something to color with, and let your heart be your guide. 

If you have never made a mandala before I am adding a few mandalas already drawn (courtesy of Google images). Just start listening to your muse and color away!
Do be warned, they are addictive!

"Oh, what's that... you want to see what I made?" Silly me, of course you do...

I used homemade twinkling h2o's and homemade glimmer mist for the background. Then I started in the middle and began drawing my mandala. My teacher would probably cringe because I didn't use any drafting tools, it's all free hand...

and here are the mandalas I promised that you can just start coloring!

I do hope you enjoy this exercise,
and don't forget to add your link on Mr. Linky at the bottom of this we can all come by and oooh, and ahhhh over one an other's work!

If you pop over to my personal blog, Mossberry Cottage ( you will find a link on my sidebar for a free mandala class with the instructor I learned from. I met her over at Willowing where by the way, you will find a second free class from Guadalupe!
So, don't forget to link up and most importantly, HAVE FUN! 


Monday, October 22, 2012

Trick or Treat?

Last week, Diane invited us to create art about our favorite season.  
You've probably guessed by now that I chose fall.

Our new challenge at Inspiration Avenue for this week is centered around the autumn season.  Fall is definitely in the air in the northern hemisphere.  Many are planning festivities for Halloween.  Others are embracing the season and treating themselves to special things related to fall.

Caramel apples, spiced cider, pumpkin pies...When autumn comes around, what is your special treat?

Do you love to rake up a big pile of fallen leaves and jump in?
Does your family take a drive in the country to enjoy all of the visual pleasure of fall?

Will you put a scarecrow in your yard or garden?

 Or carve a jack-0-lantern from a big fat pumpkin?

Are fall flowers something you fancy?

Do you find joy in dressing up in a fun costume for Halloween?

Are there children who knock on your front door and beg for candy? 
Or do you take your kids around so they can trick or treat?  

This week, you're invited to share an image about fall treats.  Whether or not you are a person who celebrates Halloween, we'd like to know what you find special about this time of year.



Monday, October 15, 2012

For Everything There Is A Season

This week our Inspiration Avenue's Challenge
is free and easy.
Show us your favorite season!
Show it with photography, 
with paint
or mixed media art
the choice is all yours!!

so now it's your turn
leave your link and
 show us your favorite season!


Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Meet and Greet for Beth Pollock

Please join me in welcoming Beth Pollock, our newest member, to the Inspiration Avenue Team
Beth comes to us from New Hampshire.  Beth describes her art as eclectic, due to the fact that she works in mixed media, painting, and collage to create things including jewelry, handmade books, tags, and greeting cards.
Beth feels that participating in a variety of art challenges is a way to explore ideas and techniques, with the result being to learn more about her individual vision as an artist.  One reason she’s joined Inspiration Avenue is her desire to connect with other artists.  By providing support for each other, the IA team is strengthened, both as a group and individually.

Her Etsy shop, Mossberry Cottage, is on vacation temporarily while she creates new inventory. 
Her jewelry combines gorgeous, colorful and iridescent beads with metal, evolving into its final whimsical form as she creates each piece.  Here’s a sneak peek of the type of jewelry you might find in her shop.

“I create art that moves with the rhythm of the seasons,” Beth said.  In fact, she tells us that her creative moods “shift as the seasons change.”  This is evident in two pieces about winter.
Winter Ball
Winter Goddess

“My art flows through a background of anthropology, librarianship, and science.  Nature, ethnology, archaeology and books play a role in much of my artistic creations,” Beth shared. Her experience working as a member of design teams for rubber stamp and digital stamp companies creating greeting cards provided valuable experience.  Through this work, Beth gained insight into her own art.   
Prairie Farm Girl
At this point in her life, she is excited to be focusing on creating her own art and sharing her experience with others who have a passion for making images.   Visit her blog to learn more about Beth.  There’s a gallery of images you simply must see!  Meanwhile, Beth is busy in her studio creating wonderful art to share will all of us.
Beth's Studio

I hope you'll take a moment to visit Beth's blog.  

Watch for an upcoming announcement about the grand re-opening 
of her Etsy shop, Mossberry Cottage. 
Click to Visit Beth's Blog 

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Weekly Art Challenge

(((((  O R A N G E  )))))

Do you go for the orange crayon, 
or do you like to mix yellow and red?
Here in the North, orange is appearing everywhere

In the South, perhaps you are planting brilliant orange blooms

Create something using aNy shade(s) of OrAnGE !

In your mind, is ORANGE:

Happy     Energetic     Hot      Jazzy  
       Vibrant      Fiery     Sunny   Bright?


Soothing    Yummy    Peachy    Cheerful
           Fresh  Harmonious   Mellow    pastel?

YOU decide how you would like 
to present ORANGE!

As usual, any medium is welcome and encouraged!

Create your entry and leave a link here with Mr. Linky
by Sunday, October 14. (If Mr. Linky is being uncooperative, 
leave a link in the comments and we will pick it up. :)
Leave a comment anyway, just because we like comments!

Thank you for playing! We're looking forward to seeing your
O r A n G e !


Monday, October 1, 2012

Everything is Coming Up Roses♥

Hi it's me again, Cindy from Cottage Remnant
I'm hosting the challenge this week.

You guessed it!!!
This weeks challenge is all about Roses.

My favorite roses are the PINK ones of course.
I believe Roses to be one of the most beautiful flower there are, second only by it's breath taking scent that just magically fills the air with perfume. Use any colors you want but mine will probably be pink!

Brigid AshwoodAmos Trout Paine
Jenn's RosePatti Jansen
Roses come in many wonderful shades and sizes,
what wonderful style lies within your creative palette.

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