Monday, April 29, 2013

Mosaic Monday/ Art Sale and Garden Tour!

 Starting to get really busy with new commissions and I have a sale to prepare for in May, I get to sell alongside my best pal from college, Rebecca Swann. I will be taking part in the White Rock East Garden Tour on Sunday May 19th. Today I worked on our flier. I will be selling a little bit of everything, clay robot heads, mosaics and of course I will have samples of my pet portraits on hand. My girlfriend will have her newest jewelry creations for sell. Her work is stunning, so drop by and check us out.


This Garden tour is always a fun one because we have such a diverse group of gardeners in our area. I have even seen chickens and bee keepers on past tours.

Here are the details:
SUNDAY, May 19, 2013 - 10:00 to 5:00
Casa Linda Estates, Little Forest Hills, Forest Hills

$10.00 price of admission to 9 gardens in the 3 neighborhoods and an additional plant sale.

Voted: Best Garden Tour in the USA!

Monday, April 22, 2013

Mosaic Monday/ Etsy Mosaic Octopus

2.5x3.5 ACEO
Purchase at  ETSY

I just listed an ACEO over at Etsy. This is Pinkie the octopus, and she will be on sale for 50% off this week if you check out using promo code: iheartmosaics. She will go back to full price next week. Great addition to any Cephalopod collection.

Description: Iridescent glass in the background, pink and orange glass on the Octopus. She is signed on the back and there is a hook for easy hanging. This small work  of mosaic art is 2.5 x 3.5. She is packaged in a cotton bag for safe keeping.

I will be listing new works all month over at Etsy so check back often. In addition to Octopus and Robots there is always plenty of dog and cat art!

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Photoshop Tutorial/ Smudge Tool

Today I want to share my recent process video that shows the prep work I do using the smudge tool to soften and blend each and every pixel on my client photos.

My subject is Lady and I hope you enjoy this Photoshop tutorial. If you are a potential client I think you will have a better understanding of my process and if you are a fellow digital artist I hope you find it helpful. I do offer classes in Photoshop and my next workshop is in June.
©  rebecca collins /

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Photoshop Tutorial Doggy Eyes

Today I just uploaded a video tutorial on using the liquify tool in Photoshop for opening up eyes. Most of my clients are totally unaware of how much prep work I do with their images before I even start playing with colors. Half shut eyes, missing ears, and pixelation due to low res images are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to issues that I often must resolve before I start working with color and paint tools.

I know a lot of other pet portrait artists follow me here and I plan to start doing more tutorials when I have time.  I will also be teaching a 2 day workshop in June here in Dallas on using the Wacom tablet. You can register for that on-line at the Creative Arts Center WebsiteCreative Arts Center Website.  The fee is $225 and I will cover the smudge tool and the paint tool and students will get the chance to play with the Wacom tablet themselves. 
The workshop is Jun 29 - Jun 30/ SATURDAY & SUNDAY 10:00am - 4:00pm ( 2 days)
Creative Arts Center Dallas Texas.

Monday, April 08, 2013

Mosaic Monday: Obsessions, Studies, Production?

ATC Mosaic Trading Cards
© rebecca collins
Pink Octopus
© rebecca collins
Last weekend I took part in a local ATC mosaic card trade and the theme was the beach. It gave me a great excuse to revisit Squid and Octopus. I made a pink octopus and a red tentacle that I traded, but I had one pink Jelly fish looking guy that I could not let go of because I loved him too much. I really liked his composition and it sort of inspired an entire "series" of ATC sized Octopuses, or Octopi. So this last weekend I started working on a full dozen ACEO cards.
Red Tentacle
© rebecca collins

Doing so many of these in different colors I started thinking about the terms artists use when working in multiples on the same subject. I could call this a "study" because I am having fun seeing how the different glasses combine and cut. I could call it a "series, or I could say that it is "production" work since I do intend to sell them eventually. I will for now avoid the "production word", because for me that implies it is no longer fun and I am actually have a great time doing these little cards. Each one is very different even though they have the same basic layout. I do intend to choose my favorite color combo and create a larger project based off of these little experiments so I suppose they are study in a sense.

And then there is the whole concept of "obsessions". My very first mosaic was an octopus, and then my next 6 projects were Cephalopods of some sort and here I am returning to the subject again.  We recently saw the Chagall show here in Dallas and boy did that man have his iconography down. Half way through the show you started looking for a goat, rooster, or violin in every single painting he did. Don't get me wrong, I loved his work and the show. Where was I, oh yes, artists do tend to get stuck on subjects and themes and I do not know when it borders on obsession and when it is just knowing what you like. I like squid, I like bugs, I like birds, I like robots, and yes of course I like dogs and cats. I like technology and I like glass.  I think I will always return to the same themes over and over again. When it comes to my personal mosaic work it is never really about the subject when you get right down to it and it is much more about the process and the simple love of making things.