Art and Positive Thinking

Welcome to my Renee Loves Art blog!

My focus is exploring, creating and reflecting upon the positives of life and connecting them to my art whether it be photography, pen and ink drawings, watercolour paintings, mixed media, digital media or any other possible media I dive into!

I hope you join me on my art adventure!

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Positively Melodious

You're My Best Friend
Positively melodious depicts our evening of joy.  Music uplifted us tonight at a Youth Open Mike Music Night at the Legion in the "Gas City".  Local youngsters bravely volunteered to play their guitars, pianos, drums and tambourines.  Many also sang some amazing songs.  I am so envious!

I am always over taken with emotion, when a young child has the courage to get up on a stage and play and sing for an audience!  I know exactly how that feels.  In grade three I sang at the Music Festival at the College.  I was a very shy child, but I managed to sing a song about a sparrow in front of a crowd and jurors.  I earned third out of three, but at least I tried. I was told I needed to sing louder... not better, so I guess I did well. 

More recently in November of 2011, I had my own piano recital experience.  In January of 2011, I signed my husband and son up for guitar lessons, and me for piano lessons for a Christmas present.  I grew up playing the organ.  I had had a year or two of lessons as a child, but had barely played since I was a teenager.  Naturally, I had lost a lot of knowledge and skill.  I had forgotten a lot of notes, and of course, my left hand was very weak because I chorded or played by ear. 

I bought an electric piano several years previously, but only plunked away, and didn't really play very often.  Each night and day, the piano would forlornly stare at me, begging for me to play with it.  Finally, the pleading tugged at my untuned heart strings, and I took the plunge.  I decided to call up my nephew's music teacher.  I noticed at his guitar recital that she had a real cool, relaxed demeanour, and made the students feel comfortable and successful.  She accompanied them, making them feel supported.  I decided she was the lady for us.  She luckily had room for us. 

Back to my recital.  Jeff, my husband, agreed to play in the recital if I would play with him and our music
teacher.  I learned some new songs for him and learned how to accompany.  We had a lot of arguments about keeping time and hitting the right chords, but persevered.  The day of the recital at the library, will be one event I will never forget. The memory will always be there for me to put things into perspective.  My heart was racing, my legs were bouncing  and my breath was shortened... I/We were so nervous...Jeff and I were the only adults on the program.  Also, the piano was a grand piano, and I had never played one.  That made my heart leap and want to hide.  My music book was way up high, the bench seemed all wrong, compared to what I was used to, and I seemed to not be able to find where middle C was supposed to be.  Luckily, we had three of us playing, so if one of us messed up , the others would carry us.  I tried trelax...but good grief, there were so many different things that I wasn't used to.

When we were done, I wasn't even sure how I /we sounded.  My legs were weak, and I felt like fainting.  The crowd cheered the loudest for us, not because we were the best, but because we had the courage to try.  One lady came up to me and gave me a great big hug, I had never met her in my whole life.  She said that we were an inspiration to her because she couldn't even play in front of one person, her favourite aunt, in her own home.  Another lady said, "Well, done.  I am going home right now and telling my husband that we need to play music together!"  My mom and dad, father in-law and his lady friend came to watch us like we were young children.  My mom video taped us, like every proud parent would.  She asked us if we wanted to watch it.  Jeff and I, both in unison replied, "NOOOOOOO!"

Just the other day, Jeff decided to watch the video.  He said that I carried him and he did horribly.  After a few bars, he quit watching and said all of the feelings of stress returned to him, and he just couldn't stomach it!  I still refuse to watch and listen to the video.

So, when I say, I am very proud of the braveness of the young children tonight, I mean it.  I clap hard and loud for each kid, even if they make a bazillion mistakes.  I know precisely what they are going through!  I now feel motivated to play piano right now...oh, but it is too late.  I will have to play tomorrow and have another positively melodious night in the privacy of my own home, just for me!  I salute the musically brave!

The photograph is "soul property" of Renee Dowling. 
If you wish to use the photo in any way,
or would like a copy, please contact her

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Positively Profiled

Positively profiled on a power pole, a red-winged black bird patiently posed, pondered and gazed at the pinky orange sunset tonight.

Positively Profiled

Amazingly, the pink sunset seduced the tree trunks to disrobe their usual attire for an outfit of pink, something that I have started to notice now that my eyes have been trained to look at things "like an artist".

Pink Attire

I caught a glimpse of the duck that I have been tracking in my dugout.  The poor thing has a white spot that always gives it away.  Can you find it in the photo?


The photographs are "soul property" of Renee Dowling. 
If you would like to use them in any way,
please contact her

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Positive Anticipation

With positive anticipation I walk the pasture, searching, waiting and hoping! It has been just over a year since I had the glorious pleasure of seeing something I have never seen before in such magnitude.  Last May, early in the morning, I spotted a fox scurrying across our pasture with a gopher in her mouth.  Not a totally grand event, but for me, an animal lover, I grew curious and excited, for many springs we have seen twin kits wrestling in our corrals and I was hoping to be privileged to see the sight once again!  I called my son, and encouraged him to hustle, it was still early enough before school for us to investigate.  I grabbed my camera, hopped into the Escape, and drove to the power pole where the fox was eager to get to with her gopher.  To our surprise, we caught glimpses of not one, not two, not three, not four, not five, not six, not seven, not eight, not nine, but TEN little kits!!!! I couldn't believe it, do foxes really have that many kits in a litter? 

They were wrestling, playing hide and seek and ready for breakfast.  I was lucky enough to get a few photographs!  I spent the summer following them, crawling through the tall grass in the pasture and in the ditch to catch a glimpse and some photos.  It was tough to do, with the wind blowing the tall grass and my dog tugging on my arm when her eyes fastened onto the foxes.  Let's just say, my shots were blurry.  I resorted to using a tripod, but still managed to miss several shots... tripods are so cumbersome.

This spring, I have been peeking out our bedroom window every morning and walking past the den most days, hoping, waiting and wishing that the mother will peek her head out of the den with little ones... but so far... boo hoo, no foxes.  They had a rough summer.  To our dismay, we  found many dead foxes on the road and in the ditches... but maybe, with luck, some survived and will come back for a visit or an extended stay!  With positive anticipation, maybe we will be fortunate to have some fox adventures this spring and summer!

Where's My Breakfast?

I See Six

Peek a Boo
The photographs are "soul property" of Renee Dowling.
If you wish to purchase or use her photographs in any way,
please contact her at

Monday, May 28, 2012

Positively Ducky

This evening has been positively ducky, literally and figuratively.  The skies have cleared, the much needed rain has stopped and the birds are chirping delightedly.  Venturing around my acreage, I was surprised to find an extra large and very furry "bird", three different times in three different trees.  It turned out it was our very spoiled barn cat, which has become a house cat because of her siblings not treating her very well and continually chasing her.  Today it was like the Loonie Tunes, "Sylvester" the cat chasing Tweety, only Tweety is really our cat, "Painted Smile", named after a famous bucking horse, by my husband.  Painted Smile did have some great poses up in the trees, however.  As scared as she was, she is now lounging and preening on her rocking chair, as happy as a gopher in a wheat field! 

My nightly journey to the dug out, turned out to be ducky, too, literally.  I declared yesterday, that I should buy a hunting blind to put up at the dugout, so I can get some decent photographs of some ducks.  Every time I spot a duck, it bolts, squawks and flies off.  Tonight was different, I spotted a duck and it stayed in the dugout.  Maybe it is building a nest, because this is the second time I have seen it and it hasn't flown off!  It was very enjoyable watching it "hide" along the bank, wading in the water with its head down.  It made for an excellent reflection.  Now I will be on a mission each night to see if I will be a new ducky mom.  Other birds joined me at the dugout trying to figure out what I was up to.  The evening sky was also positively ducky tonight.  The way the sun was poking its head out among the darker clouds was breathtaking!  Positively ducky!

I Tawt I Taw A Putty Tat

Is Sylvester Gone Yet?

Her Again?

Can She See Me?
What's She Doing Around Here?

After the Rain

And the Skies Opened
The photographs are "soul property" of Renee Dowling. 
If you would like to purchase or use her photographs in any way, please contact her

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Positively Kiddish

Positively kiddish describes my art for today.  Isn't it fun to not take yourself too seriously and create art like a kid, meant for a kid?  Here are three pieces I have created for my cousin's birthday!  Beatrix Potter was my inspiration for these positively kiddish drawings and the painting of the rabbit was done in the Chinese watercolour painting style!  One of my favourite kid books is "Guess How Much I Love You" by Sam McBratney, maybe some day I can think of a story to go with my bunny pictures!  See, I am positively kiddish!

Happy Birthday Bunny!

Birthday Birdie!

Brown Bunny
The art is "soul property" of Renee Dowling. 
If you would like to use her art in any way,
or if you would like her to create a birthday card for you, in this style,
please contact her at

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Positively Refreshing

What a positively refreshing day in Lethbridge!  While Bryan was trying out for his football team, I spent the day doing Renee Loves Art things.  Selfish I know, but I spent last night freezing at the U of L football field, so I think I deserved a day on the town... what do you think?

First, I visited a store called "The Studio" and bought myself a new tube of watercolour, blue (red shade), to see if I could make different shades of green.  I bought myself a watercolour book by Claudia Nice.  I love her books, they are almost like visual journals, written in her own calligraphy.  I also bought myself a field sketch book, 5x8 because my other one is so big and heavy.  What a great little art supply store and studio.  I love all of the diverse drawing mannequins in the window display.  I should have photographed it, but I left my camera with Jeff.

I also visited Ten Thousand Villages and found the chimes I was looking for.  The sound is amazing. I also treated myself to dark chocolate with raspberries.  Yummmmmy!  I found some amazing little palm sized handmade books that I want to do a little sketch in each day.

Lethbridge has some great other stores downtown with creative interesting things...a innovative cake store, jewelry and clothing store with creative displays in antique containers like old bread pans, library card catalouge drawers...  I wish Medicine Hat's downtown was as interesting!

I spent part of the morning in CHAPTERS!!!!  I love the atmosphere there, the music, people reading, Chai Tea and of cours, gazillions of books.  I ended up buying a book called "Paint Watercolours That Dance With Light" by Edith Kincaid  and her paintings do dance with light!  I also ended up downloading several books about creativity!  So many books, so little time.

The best part of my day however, was after lunch!  I ventured to the Galt Museum (I love antiques and Canadian history...maybe I should switch grades again so I can teach the topics I love...Alberta history, the fur trade, Chinese immigrants, Native American culture, ranching, the railroad... ), then I journeyed outside to the prairie, one of my other true loves!  I took several photographs of prairie plants and flowers, the landscape, the bridge and then hiked to Fort Whoop-Up!  The scent of all the blooming bushes, and the sage was so refreshing! What a beautiful pathway they have.  Once at the fort, I fell in love with the old wood of the fort palisade!  The fort has many displays, wood buring stoves included and some great antiques.  I walked so much I wore a whole in the toe of my socks!

My goal for today's adventure was to find different patterns and designs to use in my drawings and art.  I had a positively refreshing Renee Loves Art day!

Refreshing Spring Flowers

This Way and That Way
(Palisade Walls)

Prickly Pear Cactus Patterns

Cog Patterns

The photographs are "soul property" of Renee Dowling. 
If you wish to purchase or use her photographs in any way, please contact her at

Friday, May 25, 2012

Positively Relaxed

Positively relaxed, laying here in our hotel room, it feels so good to welcome the weekend. I was so excited last night to finish another watercolour painting, that I was wide awake well after midnight! That was one short sleep.

The wind here in Alberta's windy city has wiped me out while watching my son tryout for the Alberta Summer Games football team for our zone. I met a really friendly football mom and had a great time meeting her. Thank goodness for winter coats and warm fuzzy blankets... Burr! I wonder, if the university would take down the flags would it seem less windy? Out of sight, out of mind?

Along with painting and photography, I also find drawing with pen and ink to be relaxing.

Good night, I think I will further relax by playing some tunes on my Ipad and reading my new Mary Higgins Clark novel called "The Lost Years". That is if I can keep my eyes open long enough. Tomorrow I will go to Chapters to see what new art books I can purchase, yipee, and Ten Thousand Villages to find Tibetan hand chimes...they chime for what seems like forever... How positively relaxing! Ommmmmm...

The Elbow Tree

I call this the "Elbow Tree" because of the way the one branch bends as if leaning on the prairie sky.  I find pointillism so relaxing, I can do it forever.  The trees down at Police Point Park continue to inspire me through the seasons.
This pen and ink drawing is "soul" property of Renee Dowling. 
If you would like to use her image in anyway, please contact her at

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Positively Quick

Positively quick...well mostly quick. Actually I started this painting in my watercolour class last month, but I wanted to finish the painting tonight.  My goal for tonight was to paint quickly and to only use my paintbrush on the rocks without using pencil. I used a fine tipped marker to define areas when I was done painting.  I may try this painting again, because I could improve on the sky and mountains...what mountains...??? Exactly, they disappeared... (All which I painted and drew a month ago when I wasn't so comfortable with the watercolour paint....) I would also redraw the dock straighter so the eye leads up to the right hand corner instead of down.  Finally, I would do the masts of the boats thinner.  It sounds like I have challenged myself to redo this.   Overall, I am pleased with the quickness of my painting tonight, it was positively quick! 
Vancouver Island Dock
This watercolour painting is "soul" property of Renee Dowling.
If you would like to use or purchase this art, please contact her at

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Positively Emotional

Positively emotional is how I feel.  Emotional in a good way.  When I began this blog, I was in need of changing my perspective. Let's just say, I am at a turning point in my career and it hasn't been easy this year.  Even though my goal is to focus on positive thinking, I never anticipated the impact this journey was going to have on me.  I have received a lot of support from so many people in so many ways.  Now that I have had the courage to share with my family and friends, they are starting to share with other family and friends and the positivity keeps growing.  This is called the "ripple effect". I have heard from many people and my spirit is starting to heal which is making more room for me to grow personally, and artistically with my painting, photography and my piano playing. When I have a moment, no matter where I am, I am really realizing there is a lot of positive things around me, everything from strangers sharing their firewood at a community fire pit at a campground this weekend, to an uncle helping his nephew when his fishing line got caught on the rocks, to the young grade three students who hug me every Wednesday when I am on supervision, to the people who let me in the right driving lane when I got stuck in the left lane this afternoon, when a colleague brought me a beautiful plant and an encouraging card just when I needed it, and to mention one more, the support I have earned from a very kind local artist.  Just now on my Ipod, Eva Cassidy has begun to sing, "Blue Eyes Crying in the Rain", well, these blue eyes are crying in the rain, but it is because I am positively emotional from all of the positive things in my life!

The Ripple Effect
Although this photograph is lacking in great lighting, I was struck by the way rain drops were kissing and rippling the lake water and spectacular rocks at Spruce Coulee.   I am starting to see a theme.  My love of rocks is appearing in my photography and my painting.  Maybe I will have to try painting these Alberta rocks.  Like the mighty Cottonwood trees, they must have a lot of interesting stories to tell!

The photograph is "soul" property of Renee Dowling. 
If you would like to use her photography in any way, please contact her

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Positively Surprising

Positively surprising is the phrase for today.  When I arrived at home, I checked my phone messages.  I received a message from one of my favourite local artists and art teacher to call her regarding a message I left her on her blog.  She took time out of her day to personally call and to answer the question I asked her.  She is so kind, thoughtful and supportive.  I hope she knows how inspiring she is.  It is because of her that I thought of starting this blog and adventure.  You never know when you have a positive influence on someone else!  Positively surprising isn't it?

Listen to The Tree

This pen and ink drawing was inspired by a photograph and a lovely day in winter.  The beautiful, wise Cottonwood tree is supportive to all kinds of prairie forest critters, from mice in the fallen branch, to woodpeckers in the trunk, spiders in the bark and chickadees in the branches.  I am certain the tree has many tales to tell. All one has to do is stop and listen.  My watercolour teacher is like this tree to me, supportive, a good listener and a very good storyteller.

This art is "soul" property of Renee Dowling. 
If you wish to use the image in any way,
please contact her at

Monday, May 21, 2012

Positively Pink

A positively pink partial lunar eclipse occurred last night. I missed part of it because of the clouds, but the sunset was, orange, ever changing. Sunday's sunset was perfectly pink!

Perfectly Orange
Perfectly Pink
Within a few minutes the sky transformed in colour. Isn't nature amazing?

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Positively Proud!

I am positively proud!  I skipped around the house just now... it wasn't pretty, but, oh well. I finally finished my watercolour painting of the rocks from Vancouver Island.  The whole process was so calming, exciting and exhilerating.  It was so fun to figure out what colours the rocks really were. I painted after work, in the morning and in the afternoon, whenever I felt inspired!  It is the first painting I have done since my lessons that I actually like!  My next adventure is to figure out how to paint faster... but baby steps, right?  For now, I will be positively proud of the gains I have made so far in blending the colours and showing reflected light!
They All Fit Together!
The art is the "Soul" property of Renee Dowling.
If you are interested in using the art in any way,
please contact me at

Positively Perfect

Positively perfect sums up my day...gardening, fishing, being with family, sitting by a campfire. As I sat upon the gorgeous rocks at Spruce Coulee, I loudly stated, "I could do this for the rest of my life." We were fishing for brook trout, relaxing in the fleeting sunshine, baiting our hooks with shrimp, once frozen corn and very hard white marshmallows. There wasn't that much fishing action but it was so wonderful to be in the fresh air, surrounded by slow moving water, hundreds of minnows swimming by, happy children and adults just being. The aspen trees were budding their yellow green leaves, the sky ever changing from warm smiling sun to teasing rain clouds, one minute to the next the temperature kept changing, even the wind changed from the east, when the fish bite the least, to west when the fish bite the best. My nephew, uncle and I caught brook trout. They were so beautiful, red spots, blues, green, purple. They were also very delicious barbequed in butter and lemon pepper! I also was gifted in being around a very special little girl... She is so curious, enthusiastic, appreciative and friendly. I wish all children and adults had her gift of loving the world and the people around them. It may come as a surprise to know that I said that I wish all children and adults were like her, she was born with Down's Syndrome and a whole lot of health problems, but she has a special zest for life, something more people could benefit from. She is not afraid to explore, to make new acquaintances and to get down, get dirty, play and live each day like there is no tomorrow. Positively perfect, I'd say!
New Hope
The new growth contrasting the old growth struck me as beautiful.
My dog seems to agree with me that the day was "Positively Perfect".

The above pictures are "soul" property of Renee Dowling.
If you would like to purchase or use any of her photographs, please contact her at

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Positively Empowered

Blue Skies From Now On
I felt positively empowered today. It began at the end of my work day, sad I know, but that's how it seems to go.

Anyways, I was asked if I would accompany a previous student of mine to a special lunch. She was asked who she would like to go with and she asked if I could accompany her!

She is such a sweet girl. I have always admired her desire to try and do her best. She was and still is so appreciative and loving. I said that I would be absolutely delighted to take her.

This made me feel empowered, that I actually have made a positive impact on a student. The crazy thing is she has the same name as a special kindred spirit I mentioned in a previous post on the weekend. It goes back to that thinking about something or someone and the next thing you know it happens or you see or hear from that person shortly after.

The empowerment I felt gave me the courage to say no today. I was asked to help conduct a workshop a few weeks ago, yes it is an honour, and I agreed to help but if it was on a Tuesday. I never heard back from the person, but received a notice that the workshop is on a Wednesday. Then today I was asked if that day is good for me. I said that it wasn't because I am busy on Wednesdays with my music lessons and practice. I could have changed the schedule, but felt things were done a little backwards, so I decided it was in my best interest to say no to the day and no to having to prepare at the last minute on my long weekend.

Ahhhhh, I am getting smarter and more courageous....positively empowered!

The photograph is the "soul" property of Renee Dowling.
 If you would like to purchase or use her photographs in any way,
please contact her at


Monday, May 14, 2012

Positively Enraptured

Positively enraptured I'm my painting and CBC music, the jazz songbook station, for well over two hours. I was carried to Vancouver Island and it's diverse rocky beaches near Courtney- Comox. I am nearly done! I love how all of the rocks fit together like a family on a beach! I still haven't mastered the art of painting quickly, but am figuring out blending colours much more interestingly! I also enjoyed an hour of Canadian Pickers... I need to go antiquing. I wonder what it would be like to travel across the country looking for historic treasures and having a shop to share them with other history fans? I wonder what I could do with historical artifacts, books, art and a small cafe?


This photograph is of a collection of antiques I have scattered around the house.

The photograph is "soul"property of Renee Dowling.
If you would like to purchase or use the photograph in any way,
please contact her at

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Positive Artist's Date

Thursday, Friday and Saturday, I made time for an artist's date. Thursday, I attended a high school drama performance called, "Rabbit Hole". It was very sad, but the performances were amazing, believable and perfectly timed. I was very proud of one performer, whom I taught in in grade five. She was very shy, sweet, but loved to perform each week in an invention I created called, "Show Time". She did a phenomenal job. Another performer was from my other school. He was so meek and put himself perfectly into the fragile character. He only had a small part, but his lines and demeanor made tears pool in my eyes. His character hit a four year old as he was running after his dog chasing a squirrel across the street. How horrible for a young 16 year old driver. The saddest line was when he apologized for hitting the boy. He thought he was distracted and was speeding at 32 km per hour in a 30 km zone. Poor kid. Friday and Saturday I made time to take a few photographs. Saturday I visited Inspire Cafe to look at the art, treating myself to lemon poppy seed cake and a cold glass of milk. I also treated myself to my favourite veggie panini and raspberry Italian soda at Zucchini Blossom. I visited several greenhouses and my favourite Home Hardware in a small town nearby. I had a great day, alone, shopping for gifts and treating myself to a few nice things too. I also made time this weekend to paint more on my rock picture, play piano, try a new song and spruce up my flower beds. Yes... Even Jeff helped me rake! What a guy.

Crying In the Rain

Flax is a prairie plant that grows very well in our area and in my flower beds.
A new flower opens with the sunshine and closes at night.
This is one of my favourite photos I took a long time ago with my first digital camera.
This photograph is "soul" property of Renee Dowling.
If you would like to purchase or use her photograph,
please contact her at 

Positively Spoiled

I do declare today I was positively spoiled. My husband barbequed farm fresh sausage, made a mushroom omelet, pancakes, cut orange slices, and made frozen orange juice for Mother's Day breakfast. Bryan helped cook too. We sat around the kitchen table and talked and laughed and really enjoyed being together. They spoiled me with a great card stuffed with ITunes and ... Yeh... enrollment in a summer art class drawing outside with a local artist Maureen Newton. Just what I wished for. It is strange lately, since I started reading The Artist's Way by Julia Cameron, I think about something and the next thing I know, it becomes a reality. I was looking at the outside of the school thinking that the outside walls of the new portables don't match and the next morning the painters were there. I was thinking about my high school art teacher on Sunday and the next day I saw him at Winners. Also on Sunday at the Inspire Cafe and again on Saturday at the same place I was thinking that I should enrol in a summer art class and today, Jeff and Bryan gave me a gift of the exact class I was thinking of enrolling in. I predicted that one of my students would choose a certain song for his presentation, and sure enough the next day he handed in the lyrics to that very song. This positive thinking thing sure has been wonderful. The final positively spoiled event this weekend was at my sister' house. She made a delicious supper as usual! What a wonderful weekend... Walks, wonderful weather, fresh spring scents, butterflies fluttering, a myriad of birds singing, frogs chirping, bike riding with my sun in the clean country air, skies of pink, green, blue, purple, red...Positively spoiled! Anne would have loved the weekend. Anne? The Canadian red headed kindred spirit who insisted she spell Ann with an e!


This bee spoiled me by letting me get close.  Unfortunately, I just couldn't get the right angle and light to catch a glimpse on camera if the whole bee.  I will keep on trying.  Thamks, Bee for making my artist date so interesting!

The photograph is "soul" property of Renee Dowling.
If you would like to purchase or use her photograph, please contact her

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Positively Sunny

Positively sunny best illustrates my day. The sun gloriously shone upon a lot of my students today and encouraged them to reflect the radiant sun from within their hearts. It was also enlightening to meet with some very hopeful, passionate teachers for sunny conversations and heart warming motivation. The sun also swept my soul to add more onto my rock watercolour painting. I am becoming less intimidated by the paper, water and paint and am beginning to courageously mix colours and add highlights and complimentary colours to get other colours to pop. I am really starting to see what colours are really there. Thanks to my wonderful watercolour teacher, Gena Lacoste!  Positively sunny is how I feel!


This photograph reminds me of a glorious summer sun.
It is "soul" property of Renee Dowling.  If you would like to purchase or use the photograph in any way, please contact Renee Dowling at

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Positively Stress Free

Today was positively stress free. No drama. I really have the itch to paint, but it is too late to start, because if I start now, I will be up really late. For sure on the weekend, I must paint. I did, however,draw today for an hour. Today, one of my students cleaned up part of the room without me asking her. Things are looking positively up! I started the daily reflection suggested in the book, "The Artist's Way", it suggests writing on three pages, whatever comes to mind. I did try to get all of my negative thinking out, by the third page, I started writing only positive, because I got all of the ick off of my chest. It is suggested to do this to unleash creativity. I have to admit it did work for me last night and today. I do feel positively stress free and more creative. The next recommendation is to make an "Art Date" with yourself, this could be time alone to study art, go for a walk, do something once a week to stimulate creativity. I did this today by studying children's art in the hallway at our school. Some students created art on tiles. I want to find out the process. The art was really colorful, carefree and modern.  At last, a positively stress free day!

If the Cliffs Could Talk

Here is a pen and ink drawing of the cliffs in the city of Medicine Hat.  When I go here, I feel positively stress free!
This art is the "soul" property of Renee Dowling.
If you wish to use this image in any way, please contact her at,

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Positively Peaceful

Positively peaceful describes my evening. Texting my friend, walking with Bryan by the river, listening to the different songs of various birds, smelling the fresh clean spring air, drawing a cute little green house across the street from my music lesson studio, playing the piano and learning better fingering, admiring deep pink clouds peeking their little heads through dark, fluffy rain clouds, cuddling on the couch with my besty cat, Painted Smile, while watching American Idol, all contributed to my positively peaceful evening. I watched Midnight in Paris, what a clever movie. It reminded me of a supper table conversation we had at the table about how we all felt that things used to be easier and less complicated, and that we were concerned with where society is going. It seems, according to the writers of the movie, we all have a golden age in the past that we think is an ultimate golden time and we would rather live in...

Aging Gracefully

The pen and ink shown above is a tree that is across from the river where we walked tonight.  This tree has welcomed hundreds of people and has been the focal point between the prairie and the prairie forest for nearly a hundred years.  I bet it has heard and seen a lot of things.  I wonder if it too has a "golden age"? 
I earned a bronze medal for this work of art last year in the South Eastern Summer Games representing Cypress County.  The judge like the whimsical textrue on the trunk.

Aging Gracefully is the"soul" property of Renee Dowling.
  If you would like to use the image in any way,
please contact her at