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Roben-Marie Smith

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Life is not merely a series of meaningless accidents or coincidents, but rather, it's a tapestry of events that culminate in an exquisite sublime plan." ~ from the movie, Serendipity

Entries in art journal (3)


Art & Soul in Paradise

What do you get when you cross 4 artists, a few art supplies, and a tropical island?  Some amazing collaborations, sunshine and happiness!  What an insane combination! Last month I had the opportunity to invite 3 friends {Rae Missigman, Sandi Keene, and Roben-Marie Smith} to our home in the Cayman Islands. Whenever we weren’t on the beach, we were spread out on my dining room table, talking sharing, painting, creating.

Roben-Marie and Sandi shared the idea of “art journal collaboration” where we all sat around the table, quickly gathered a few supplies to use, than as we listened to a song on our playlist, we each began an art journal page.  The idea was to work instinctively, without planning out the page ahead of time.

Once the song was over, we immediately handed our art journals over to the person on the left and began to create on the journal in front of us during the next song!  Sort of like a musical chairs idea but with your art journal!  We could add to, cover up, or build on anything on the page. I loved the freedom this exercise gave me and once the initial stress of having to “create on demand” passed, I was able to loosen up and just let my pen, brush, or whatever I had in my hand flow!  After we went round a few times {there are no rules here} we each ended up with amazing masterpiece in our journals.  I love that we each have expressions from each other in our journals now.  This was a great warm-up but we continued to do it throughout the week just to see what we could come up with! And even now when we get together, we still do some type of collaboration, even if we are just doodling in each other's books!

Here are a few samples of what was left behind in my own art journal:



By day, I had a blast playing tour guide for my friends.  If you ever travel to Grand Cayman, there is one spot your shouldn’t miss – Stingray City.  We took a charter out into the North Sound and had an awesome day of swimming with the stingrays and snorkeling.  Sandi took my picture below from her perch on the boat and I just love it!

{photo cred: Sandi Keene}

The week was full of many firsts, including an evening called “Open Canvas.”  We took a big, brave step and signed up to paint in public at an event that featured about a dozen artists who set up easels under the moonlight.  It was a beautiful starry night in a lovely location.  We met other artists, ate and drank, and overcame all inhibitions.  It was very vulnerable at first, but before we knew it, we forgot about the onlookers as we got deep into our artwork.  I never thought I would be able to do it but now I wish I had more opportunities to paint in public. Here’s a few pics of our evening – forgive the poor photography but we were using camera phones in the dark!


Here's what I managed to paint that night - love my Carribbean Ladies with Attitude!

It was a magical week and we ended it on a high note with a beautiful sunset.  We decided we would all paint the sunset as it was setting and we used sea water in our water colors.  Symbolic of our time together . . . the sea, the colors, the art, the friendships.  I am so blessed to have these people in my life and to be able to share my special place with them!


A Peek Inside My Art Journal . . .

Had the rainy day blues today so just had to paint a warm, sunny, tropical spread in my art journal.  I can hear the steel drums in the background . . . "we're jammin', jammin'"


The Sketchbook Project 2012


In keeping with my New Year's Resolutions (which I ALWAYS make, but NEVER fulfill), I participated in the 2012 Sketchbook Project and actually FINISHED the book and postmarked it on time!  This in itself was a huge accomplishment for me.  I've signed up three years in a row but never actually completed my book.  It was a lofty goal, but also I think what stopped me in the past was putting my artwork out there for the world to see and judge.  I felt vulnerable and exposed and always struggled with the feeling that, "I'm not good enough." So the real resolution was to get over that feeling--I am not the BEST artist and I am not the WORST artist.  I am good ENOUGH.  I'm learning to love that word . . . ENOUGH.

If you don't know about the Sketchbook Project, read more about it here. I know there are a lot of people who don't like the idea that the book goes out but never comes back and I admit I felt that way in the beginning, but after a lot of contemplation, I realized that art is meant to be shared.  Art does not speak to anyone or move anyone or effect anyone if it is not SHARED.  I would love to have kept my sweet little book but I had to let it go in order for it to have real meaning to me.  So I kissed it goodbye, and sent it out into the world to hopefully inspire at least one person. That's what Art means to me!

Here's a peek into my Sketchbook Project Journal . . .

My Completed SketchbookOpen HeartI Dreamed . . .ExpectationsYay! I did it! I really did it!