Saturday, June 30, 2012

How to Overcome Overwhelm

Patriotic Flats © 2012 Amy Hillenbrand
8 x 10 oil on board

If you would rather listen then read, click on the red play button above.

Have you had those days or even weeks when you mind is spinning with all those great ideas? Your mind might sound like this:
 Oh, I'm so excited I'm going to do this, this is going to be great! Okay, first I"m going to make this and then I'm going to do that, but first I have to get this , but before that I have to finish that other thing has to be done too, oh, I have to order that, but where is the best deal, but what is more important this or that or wait! what should be the higher priority, well okay I think I'll just start here, no I can't start here because that won't work I need to do this first, but what about my laundry, I have to do that it needs to get done too or gosh I think I'll...  (yes, I know that looks and sounds like one huge run-on sentence, but isn't that what your minds does?)

 Before you know it, you become overwhelmed and then completely paralyzed. How crazy is it when you have so much to do and you know the best way to overcome the overwhelm is to get moving. Yet instead you become  paralyzed. The kind of feeling that just makes you want to throw your arms up and say "I quit" because somewhere inside you feel like you can never win or never get ahead, that dreadful feeling of power-less-ness.

But Alas, I have something for you to try, don't worry it's easy and quick. Make yourself BIG- ya, you heard me- make yourself BIG. Think about it, when you feel powerless you feel small and when you feel small it is hard for you to break-free of the overwhelm.  This is going to involve your power of imagination and yes, you can do it.  Think of a pink of elephant-see! You can do it.  

Okay now, close your eyes and imagine you are 300 feet tall and filled with great white light and just take a couple moments and immerse yourself in this feeling. Fill yourself up with the feeling of being powerful. After you have soaked up this feeling, go and do the first thing that comes to mind.  Have fun.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Mr. Leatherneck

Mr. Leatherneck © 2012 Amy Hillenbrand
5 X 7 oil on board
This is my second piece that sold at the annual 5 x 7 show at the Austin Museum of Art -Art House.  When I saw they both sold, I did a little happy dance.  This is the first time I painted some shoes with a persons feet still in them. I think it turned out kinda fun.  Wouldn't it be fun to make up all kinds of stories of whom these boots belong to and what they did that night and where those boots have been.  Okay you start

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Four B.C.

Four B.C. © 2012 Amy Hillenbrand
5 X 7 oil on board

This tiny little painting was one of my submissions to the annual 5 x 7 show at the Austin Museum of Art -Art House.  Each Artist is asked to submit two pieces with the dimensions, yes you guessed it, 5 inches by 7 inches.  All pieces are  anonymously displayed and at the stroke of 9:00 p.m. the show-goers grab the ticket for the piece the are interested in.  I was quite excited to learn that of over 1300 pieces of art my piece was one of the first to be purchased. In typical Austin style, there is live music and scrumptious food and you can step out unto the roof to see the beautiful  Austin skyline.  It is a great event with a wonderful festive atmosphere.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Palace Princess

Palace Princess © 2012 Amy Hillenbrand
8 x 10 oil on board

This is another kitty I found roaming the grounds of the Petti Palace in Florence, Italy in the spring of 2007. When I finished the painting, my Husband said "Um, Amy, she looks a little fat, are you sure you painted this right?" Yes, she was. She was quite a large kitty. I imagine she feasts daily on all palace's delicacies.  She eats like a Queen, I"m sure, but Palace Queen didn't quite have the same ring as "Palace Princess" Below are some more photos from this trip.  It was so spectacular.
This was a view of the Petti Palace looking down from the gardens, can you see the kitties down by the foundation?  That is where they were guarding the Palace.
The Boboli Gardens.
Me, doing the site-seeing thing.
The 1000 year old Villa where I stayed. My room was right at the top of the stairs you see on the right. It even came equipped with a ghost. That was fun.
Where we were served our meals everyday, Talk about Al Fresco dining, Molto Buona!

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Florence Feline

Florence Feline © 2012 Amy Hillenbrand
8 x 10 oil on board

 Why is this painting called Florence Feline you ask? Back in 2007 I was lucky to go on a fabulous painting trip in gorgeous gorgeous Tuscany.  It was spectacular. We spent  most  of the trip in a 1000 year old villa in the beautiful countryside and at the tail end of the trip the group spent a couple days in Florence. I saw all the fabulous sites the  Medici Museum, Micelanglo's David and the Petti Palace with the Boboli Gardens. We arrived late in the day so the Palace was closed. I'm still sad about that. I guess I will have to go back, right? The gardens were magnificent and lo and behold I came upon the palace kitties.  I think this little guy was just waking up from his mid-day nap.
I know this a blogging no-no, but I feel the need to explain my long absence. As I often talk about on this blog, I was called to follow my heart. This time my heart took me to the bedside of my Mother. My family learned of her uterine cancer last August and my Mother and Father bravely went ahead with chemo and later radiation. She actually did quite well on the chemo.  The cancer was aggressive and in the first week of April she had emergency surgery to repair her intestine that had been damaged by the cancer. I felt so fortunate to be there as this all occurred. This was just too much for her weakened body and on May 10th my Mother left this life. I spent about 5.5 weeks away from home and am just now feeling like I'm getting my footing back. I know I could have been no other place at this time. As I painted this painting above, I recalled all the times my Mother encouraged my talents. She was one of my biggest cheerleaders. I will miss her dearly being on this earth plane with me. I'm very glad I followed my heart.  Thank all of you who have sent me notes and cards. I now know how good it feels to be remembered during times like this.