Tag Archives: 13

Happy Birthday to AIRL

Happy Birthday to AIRL

December 13, 2013 ,  Art in Real Life’s 2nd Birthday!!!  Woo!  Send in the clowns….NOT!


Art in Real Life so far has been a pretty in-depth study in discipline and perseverance.  Doing the work. Keeping my head in the game.  Following my heart.  Learning what makes me happy.


It has been a way to share a journey to find what happened to my artistic self over the last 25+ years.  What started out all enthusiastic ambition in my younger days got jaded and lost somewhere between art school and here. I lost the connection with that side of myself, and eventually handed over the trust I had in my own creative nature and declared,” I am not really an artist” out of fear of failure or judgement.  Fast forward to 2011 when I rediscovered that passion and started making up for lost time and Art in Real Life was born.


Making a mark, small or large, on canvas, paper, fabric, the internet or at a job, or at home takes a certain amount of bravery. It requires effort and intention and a lot of trust.  What everyone who has taken a risk and put themselves out there knows is that inspiration is in the doing. Which cultivates more creativity which gives one the courage to try something even more. Posting here in this arena about my personal journey back to creativity in real life has been a lesson in discipline, perseverance and bravery for me and hopefully offers a tiny bit of inspiration for anyone who may have given up on that voice.


Art in Real Life 2013 the year of ….

Handmade Weddings:  Wedding planner is not my profession but this was definitely the year of the wedding, no doubt. Our dreams were big but our time frames and budgets tight so we were forced  to look deep and roll up our sleeves.  Creative thinking, faith and a lot of glue took us from a couple of bland banquet halls to romantic colorful spaces filled with personality and meaningful moments.


Project 365: One of my favorite developments from this blog. Many versions of this project exist on the internet.  There is a website 365Project.org that does a good job of explaining why, in this world of instant everything, does it matter to take one photo every single day for a year of your life.  My Project 365 is not a product of any of those just a suggestion by an extremely talented photographer friend . Her level of photography puts me in my place but she inspired me to really take notice of the everyday happenings, no matter how mundane or messy, and pay attention.  I like that.   Sometimes it is just capturing one simple moment brings me back to that day and the back story.  Looking to keep up with that habit and go for Project 365 2014.  Discipline and  perseverance…

Day 307

Design for Real Life: Although 2013 was all about weddings (and cats if you look at my 365 Project!), I am looking forward to being more active in this particular aspect of my creative life in 2014.  Our company, Closet Factory, has the newest cutting edge drawing technology that presents some learning curves (for me!) but  through discipline and perseverance we have been able to offer this incredibly comprehensive tool our company to our clients.  Helping people beautify and organize their homes is another passion that takes a lot of discipline and perseverance on my part.


A.R.T.:  or Acts of Random Talent page is a place that I am using to curate inspiring artists’ work as I find them around the internet.  Hoping to create a collection of unexpected art that has its roots in real life.  People who, even though they may have come to their calling in a non-traditional way, have made the connection to that inner voice and have stepped into being the artists that they were meant to be.  Really, we are all artists.

alexa meade

Gallery: It hasn’t been all weddings and cats but there has been some actual “visual art” happening around here, too. There have been paintings and classes just not so much on the gallery page.Studio renovations as well as house, food, fabric and yard projects have been a big part of the year, too!


Thank you so much for being a reader, (even if you are related to me in some way and just feel obligated!)  I am ever so grateful for your time. I am aware there is a lot of ways to spend your screen time. Thank you for stopping by.  I hope you will leave me a birthday comment if you have a moment.  I would consider it to be a wonderful gift. You could even subscribe and get an update in your inbox when there is something new here if you want…extra special thank you to my “inner circle” of subscribers!  Love you guys!


Here’s to the next 365 days of Art in Real Life!  Do something powerful and creative – be yourself!

Week as Art – #13

Week as Art – #13

FRIDAY –  the 13th

This is not the post I thought I was going to do today.  Thirteen has always had a special place in my family and I thought that I would do something really BIG and oh-so special.  But no…that’s not happening.  Today has careened out of control – technology-wise. I had pictures that somehow show up on the camera but my computer say aren’t on the SD card.  They are not on the camera when the SD card is not in it though. So I have been arguing with these two devices all day.

I have had another really HUGE deadline to meet – see below – so it took precedence today.  I almost didn’t post anything at all but that’s not how we do things around here.  I had a goal to post every day this week and dagnabbit!  That is what I am going to do!

I was having the same issue with this number a few weeks ago when I was working on piece for the CreateMixedMedia.com challenge.  I had big ideas, tried to get them going several times and was not happy with any of it. The deadline was looming so the result was this tiny 6 x 6 canvas using my favorite colors, my favorite hard-loved cornflower stamp – 3 times for my 3 kids, and vinyl letters which I have been hoarding since Cheers was a hit show on TV.  It was time to give them a life.  What the heck have I been saving them for?  Tiny, cute and simple not so BIG and oh-so special…but it’s okay. You do what you have to do. I still am happy with it.

THIRTEEN. – The number seems to always show up somewhere when something  significant happens. Even in small ways it’s usually around.  My mother was the keeper of all 13 related things that happened in our family.  That’s one reason it is so hard for me to believe that this post took on the nature that it did.  We’ve got a million of them but here is just a few choice items from the list to give you an idea:

– My dad was a full-bird colonel in the Army and when he was commissioned, he was the 13th officer in the ceremony.

– When my parents and brothers traveled to Europe by ship where my father would be stationed in Germany, their onboard stateroom number was 13.

– I was born in Germany while my family was living at 13 Stienhour St. and my oldest  brother was 13.

– My wedding date is on a 14 but so much of my memories are tied into the night before – Friday the 13th. (We were also married in what was at that time the literally “the last house on the left”on the  Virginia coast before the Back Bay Wildlife Area starts and becomes North Carolina.)

– When my son was born, the nursed rolled him to my bedside all bundled up in a fancy hospital bassinette with a big “13” stenciled at the foot.

– My mom passed away 13 years after my dad.  When we were in DC at the hotel for her burial at Arlington National Cemetary, our room was on the 13th floor of the hotel.  It was called the 14th floor, as they do, but it was actually the 13th.  Sneaky..

– This year marks 13 years I have spent with my three wonderful children on our homeschooling journey and 13 years since we moved into this house.

The main reason my post is so late and short today is that I have been busily preparing for another deadline. An entry in a contractor competition featuring a wine room that I designed and the fabulous team at Closet Factory built and installed.  I have been working on putting this together for over a month working with a pro photog – definitely not my little blue rubber band camera! – writing and editing descriptions, reading rules, getting signatures, etc.  And that’s just the entry…never mind the actual designing and building of the project!  That’s been going on for nearly a year.

A wine tasting lounge extraordinaire!  This kind of creative makes me really happy as well.  How’s that for mixed media!?

The deadline is Monday but I really needed to turn it in today.  Why?

Friday the 13th and my entry number? 113…wish me luck!

See you tomorrow… for the final number in this series – #14


UPDATE: As I was doing some behind the scenes work on the blog this morning,  I realized that my first “Welcome” post was on Dec. 13 and this post is actually my 13th post with art content.   Told ya….