Friday, June 3, 2016

Brave Enough: Artist Camping and ICAD 2016

It has been hard to give up the Thursday blog post for this week.  Here it is Friday night, and I just need to build a post because I have stuff I want to share.  I'm feeling like I've jumped some hurdles art wise.  If you've been following along, you're aware that the travel art kit has traveled but not gotten used on previous trips.

 While we were away camping over the Memorial Day weekend, I was able to pull out the watercolor palette.  It was so sweetly calming even with the chilly weather, I didn't mind bundling up to stay by the fire.  It felt great to fill a page in the watercolor sketch book!  I read Wideness & Wonder, The Life and Art of Georgia O'Keeffe by Susan Goldman Rubin.  It's an artist biography for young readers.  It's a beautiful book and perfect length for anyone short on time for reading.

camping with warm hat and neck warmer May 2016 Christy Sheeler

travel watercolor art kit and books for reading Christy Sheeler Artist

folding metal watercolor palette for travel art kit

watercolor sketch book in the mountains, travel art kit, Christy Sheeler watercolor artist

watercolor sketch book, folding metal watercolor palette, travel art kit, Christy Sheeler artist

Last summer, I joined in on the index card a day challenge or ICAD.  It's a challenge to create something with or on an index card, one a day, for the months of June and July.  It was difficult for me to find my groove in the challenge.  I was feeling a great need to be more creative.  Within myself, I felt out of shape art wise.  It seemed forced, disjointed, and frustrating.  I couldn't figure out what I wanted to do with the art supplies.

2105 ICAD Christy Sheeler artist

Without much time spent using my art supplies, the creative energy did not flow easily.  Knowing it was time to quit avoiding this struggle, I kept pushing forward, even if I didn't like what I made in the end.  I made the challenge for 8 days.  That's it...barely more than a week.  In that week, I did make my way over some hurdles.  It wasn't a complete failure though I took it rather hard.  Somehow, it fueled me to be more determined in my artistic pursuit.  The incomplete ICAD challenge led me to many new goals in the past year.

ICAD 2015 Index Card A Day Christy Sheeler artist

Day 7 index card has been trimmed and placed in a small gold trimmed frame.  This little painting gave me hope that I could find my way back to more art on a regular basis.

Index card #7, watercolor on watercolor paper, quick watercolor sketch, gold frame Christy Sheeler artist

On day 8, my last card of 2015, my index card has my words of challenge to myself,

"Am I brave...enough to step out & find out what I can do AND whether anyone will appreciate what comes from my mind to the paper through my hands and my brush...let's see!"

Index card #8, Challenge to myself, Christy Sheeler artist, watercolor, black and white pen on watercolor paper

I am taking the ICAD challenge for June and July of 2016.  I want to see what it brings this year.  I am in better condition, excited and ready to see what waits to be created on an index card!  I'm taking the nature inspired route with various plants as my subject matter.  That may change before June is done.

ICAD 2016 Christy Sheeler Artist, Index Card A Day Challenge

Card #9 Bunching green onion flower head, watercolor pencils, inks, washi tape, stamps, Christy Sheeler Artist, ICAD 2016, Index Card A Day

Card #10 Dandelion puff from our lawn, watecolor pencils and pens on gesso coated index card, Christy Sheeler Artist, ICAD 2016, Index Card A Day

Card #11, Red geranium flowers, watercolor pencil, stamps, inks on gesso coated index card, Christy Sheeler Artist, ICAD 2016, Index Card A Day

If you'd like to follow my creative Instagram feed, search christysheeler.artist.

I will link to the Daisy Yellow ICAD information so that you can give it a try!

Thanks for dropping in to let me share this quick update!  Please drop in again soon!  I'll be sure to keep the inspirations flowing through words and photographs.  My camera waits to have the memory card unloaded; we'll see what treasures I captured on our camping trip.  I believe we are finally going to experience summer here in Montana...oh, wait that could change withing the next 5 minutes.

I'm relieved to have the survived the past two weeks!  It's been crazy busy and now I'll be able to clean up my work area and begin again.   I'm weary and resting up to get busy in the art studio with artwork again.

What challenge can you give yourself?  What hurdle are you afraid to attempt?  What is holding you back from trying even if you fail?  Like me, maybe you need to change your idea of failing.  Maybe it's time for you to give it another try.

"Failure is only the opportunity to begin again, only this time more wisely."  -Henry Ford

-she must make art.


  1. Thanks for sharing your art with us. I like painting outdoors but of course that brings its own share of challenges. The weather can change on you and then you are left not only with rain or sun pelting down on you but changes in the entire light and color scheme around you. Hope you complete the 2016 challenge.

    Andrea Wilkins @ Getaway Outdoors

    1. Andrea, I haven't experienced the rain but I have painted on location in the sun and it really drained me fast! I raced to get the most important details recorded and took several reference photos for later. My family members have short attention spans so I'd be thrilled with an entire hour of painting outdoors! I know it won't always be like this so I make the most of it. Thanks for reading!