First, some back ground. Those of you familiar with the decorative painting world may recognize my books. It has been long time since I had one published. It has taken me a while to get the creative juices running again.
I had to quit painting years ago when I was faced with divorce from my first husband. As a single mom raising three kids alone, there was no time to paint. I went to work outside of the home, my spare time dedicated to my chronically ill daughter and two sons. Depression kicked my butt for many years - smashing creativity to its knees. Somewhere emotionally I felt like I didn't deserve painting anymore & shoved that identity down deep. Things are changing for me. Five years ago I married again, the kids are older and I have more time. Especially since I have been on the 'funemployment' vacation I am beginning to feel like I can start to paint & create again in earnest.
My pen name is Carolyn Altona. My last book was published in 2000 (My doG has it been that long?). No wonder I have gray hair. Here is a link to my last book available Heart of the Home Volume III.
A while back my publisher went out of business. The bottom fell out of decorative painting when scrapbooking came into vogue. The import market also contributed to its demise. I have been offered a contract for three more books with another publisher - but haven't had the time to complete the volume of designs required for each book. It isn't just the design, but the directions & patterns that need to accompany each design. Very labor intensive. I am on the fence about releasing another series of books or just stick to licensing my designs for prints - which will not require me to write directions.
That said...I was hoping to get your help on a little something. I am stuck on one of my pieces. The design is essentially complete & will be finished by adding the 'saying' and antiquing.
What I am stuck on is the saying.
Originally I designed this piece to say "Cant sleep? Don't count sheep, talk to the Shepherd". Which explains the night time sky and angel. If I can figure out some way to make the saying fit on that banner...I may stick with it. But it just doesn't feel right.
I think it is toooooooo long. (click on picture for larger view)
I love these cheeky little sheep. I know they are not realistic - but my style is between primitive, folk art and ...well...cartoon (for lack of a better word). I stopped myself from putting bows around their necks. Be glad for that.
I think I am going to put a little border collie in peeking over the hill.
Here is a closer view of the angel. She is holding the banner in the sky. Don't all angels hang around in the skies above flocks of sheep with banners? Maybe she will get a mouth before I am finished. I think she needs a little attitude.
What isn't visible in these pictures is her hair. I did it with multiple layers of metallic gold paint. After the antiquing is applied - it will deepen the regular yellow/gold paint and the metallic will 'pop'. Her halo is done the same way. She isn't done yet...don't judge her to harshly, she is a simple rustic angel.
She needs a saying on her banner. That is where you come in.
What do you think? I need a saying related to sheep. Can you think of anything?
As you can see I love to put sayings in my pieces. The following are new unpublished designs.
I love to paint bears...if you can't tell. (close up follows) "Peace to Your Heart" © Carolyn Altona / Carolynn Harwell
Here is another design with a saying (the lighting is poor on this one - sorry). Titled "Best Friends" © Carolyn Altona / Carolynn Harwell
I love this saying. I had to create a piece just for this saying... "The End of the Day" © Carolyn Altona/Carolynn Harwell
Bears, sheep and quilts give me warm fuzzy feelings. As you can see the sayings kinda go with the painting. In this one, the bear and sheep are asleep. Their day is done, looking forward to tomorrow - a fresh start.
I think I painted this one as a reminder to let things go. Each day is a new opportunity to begin afresh. I need to remember that instead of letting everything get me down. Can't change the past, just move forward.
So now it is your turn. Do you have any suggestions for a saying I can paint on the angels banner? Any and all suggestions are welcome! She needs you to be complete.