{Echo} Week 10- ‘Collection’

collection   /kəl’ekʃən/

  1.  a group of similar things that you have deliberately acquired, usually over a period of time

When Susan chose the ‘collection’ theme, I was a bit nervous – as many of you know, the majority of my belongings are currently packed away in boxes, awaiting the big move. Frankly, I was beginning to think I’d have to photograph a stack of bills from a collection agency to make the theme work! Thankfully, I remembered that I hadn’t packed up all of my studio just yet – and chose a few favorites from there.

 “The teachings of elegant sayings should be collected when one can. For the supreme gift of words of wisdom, any price will be paid.” -Siddha Nagarjuna

Over the years, I have collected many things. Most of those objects somehow reminded me of my childhood, loved ones, or places I fell head-over-6-inch-stiletto-heels in love with. I became obsessed with collecting .. you know how it is, scouring eBay, thrift stores, pestering friends & family all in the not-so-glorious name of  acquiring mounds of ‘stuff’. 

Sadly, I found that the bigger a particular collection got, the more it seemed like clutter …which significantly decreased the value it held to me. The collections that couldn’t be displayed seemed useless to me… as they were hidden. The ones that were on display became a royal pain to clean around.  Soon enough, I was back on e-bay selling off the majority of the items.

“Life is made up of small pleasures. Happiness is made up of those tiny successes. The big ones come too infrequently. And if you don’t collect all these tiny successes, the big ones don’t really mean anything.” – Norman Lear 

Nowadays, I am drawn to simpler collections that hold personal meaning and/or spark a delicious memory….. A piece of sea glass acquired on a beach, a smooth pebble found by a child, branches from a park in California where a friend & I witnessed the most glorious sunset. You know the kind of things I mean … ordinary things that our hearts find extraordinary.

I’m determined only to surround myself with things that make my heart skip a lil’ beat or items that make me laugh. I’m so over stuff for the sake of stuff. Love that.

Photo Credits:
 © Christy Hydeck (left), © Susan Tuttle (right)
(click image to view it  larger)

 A Quick FYI: Both of us  showing white/ivory buttons was not planned … I suppose it was meant to be. Serendipity! I’m so, very glad i didn’t change my photo to be different – I love how they play off of one another. I look forward to seeing what you in have store for Week 10 of Echo–Collection. Susan & I invite each of you to participate in the project and show us your unique vision, your voice, your echo. Remember, to share your link in the comments here so  if I get a chance to do a round-up I can add your site to the post.

I’ll leave you with some of the things I have collected throughout my life…

sundresses -words – paper dolls – leaves, bark, rocks & driftwood – shark’s teeth – books- antique diaries – transferware – pitchers – vintage linens – aprons – white & ivory buttons – seashells – seaglass – toy cameras – old letters – pottery – red & white anything – ornaments – charms – fabric – old paintbrushes and rulers – movies – cd’s & tapes – journals – papers – pins – cabinet cards – beads – silver jewelery – old telephones – throw pillows & blankets – antique quilts – anything with the name Christy on it miniatures – seeds – glass blocks – trains – matchbox cars – hand mirrors – knit hats – sunglasses – bowls – old maps – t-shirts – shot glasses – purses – beer bottles – snowmen – dried flowers – arrowheads – turquoise – vintage doll clothes – pens – quotations – starfish

.. and that is just naming a few! What have you collected? I do hope you’ll share.



33 Artistic & Free Social Media Icon Sets

This post has MOVED to my new blog!

You can find it below:


{Echo} Week 8- ‘Juicy’

“Don’t miss all the beautiful colors of the rainbow looking for that pot of gold.”

Susan chose the ‘ juicy‘ prompt because  she was “craving some color against this white backdrop of winter”. While I loved the prompt, I admit to being a just-a-tad-bummed initially; as my heart has been drawn to the pale, the delicate and the serene these days. However, I love a challenge (well, on most days) … and breaking out of one’s-current-musely-mood is indeed, challenging.  Am I the only one who has a muse with a severe case of tunnel vision?

There was a particular shot I wanted to get for this round of {echo} and I was not at all successful in making it work – disappointing but an excellent, much needed reminder that I need to make time to learn all the technical skills I lack where photography is concerned. While I admit I sometimes wish I could bypass the whole learning process and instantaneously have the knowledge residing in that cluttered space I call my brain… I know I would be missing out on so many opportunities to fumble and fail … and that would truly be a shame, because those are typically the e x a c t moments new discoveries and successes are made of.

So easy to lose sight of that.. such a juicy tidbit of knowledge to be reminded of.

Photo Credits:
© Susan Tuttle (left), © Christy Hydeck (right)
(click image to view it  larger)

JUICY has this wonderful spectrum of meaning that should make for some amazing interpretations this week. What does it mean to you?

I look forward to seeing what you in have store for Week 8 of Echo– Juicy. Susan & I invite each of you to participate in the project and show us your unique vision, your voice, your echo. Remember, to share your link in the comments here so I can add it to the roundup next Wednesday.


{Echo} Week 7- ‘Whisper’ Roundup

:: color the wind ::

“Let your heart guide you. It whispers softly, so listen closely.” -unknown

Which is exactly what I have been trying to do these last few weeks.; that whole listen to your heart thing.

You see, it’s not the listening part that is difficult for me…. it is the trusting part. Over the years as I have taught myself to manage living with Bipolar Disorder…. second guessing my instincts has become natural to me.

Too much so.

I am working on changing that, just a bit mind you.. so that I can allow more joy and light into my life. Routines do wonders for me – but there is something to be said for the one-of-a-kind exhilaration that arises out of spontaneity. Ironic isn’t it, having to teach myself to be spontaneous again? That, and becoming less reclusive are the two things I have been really trying to work on. I am probably the most outgoing, shy person you’ll ever meet. It takes me awhile to warm up, but once I do… I realllly do. I’m not exactly sure when I became so riddled with insecurity and stress that socializing became difficult, but the weight gain and health issues over the last few years didn’t really help matters much. I am working on it… and learning it is truly o.k. to be a perpetual work-in-progress.

Those are the whispers I hear today, the whispers that have been calling me to seek solace and wisdom in nature as well as myself  – even in this frigid winter. With each passing day I know I am becoming stronger, wiser, and one step closer to my goals. Not so bad when I really think about it. I am looking forward to leaving here – the here which I now call limbo, and starting the next chapter of my life. I think I have some creative ways to help make that happen – and hope you’ll consider helping me when the time comes.

The whisper prompt brought about some amazing images and stories. I have truly delighted in sharing in them, and hope you’ll enjoy looking through them too.

Here’s the roundup for Week 7 of {Echo} – Whisper:

:: aubergine:: (by ArtByChrysti)

{Echo} Week 7 - Whisper (by ArtByChrysti)

If  I have inadvertently forgotten you, or you choose to join in (yay!) … please let me know in the comments section and I will update the list .. it is wonderful discovering  the unique visions y’all have in this beautiful life, I can’t get enough of it.

  • New Flickr Group for the collab. ~ Join Us! Find a partner there, read the guidelines and more!
  • Add the new Echo button (susan’s awesome design) to your blog if you’d like! Get the code here.
  • Catch up with the previous {Echo’s}

See you tomorrow with the new {Echo} prompt!


{Echo} Week 7- Whisper

“The woods are never solitary–they are full of whispering, beckoning, friendly life. But the sea is a mighty soul, forever moaning of some great, unshareable sorrow, which shuts it up into itself for all eternity.” -Lucy Maud Montgomery

For as far back as I can remember, trees have been among the greatest of my friends. They entertained me as a child as they whispered these amazing and imaginative,  positively delightful stories….  the rustling of their glorious leaves revealed the wisdom of all who came before me. The branches delighted in whispering  the juicy secrets of those who climbed them..  trying to reach for a piece of the heavens. The light danced, the shadows played, the air filled with laughter… it was so very magical. I both sought and found my refuge within the woodlands. To this very day every forest I encounter summons me with its oh-so-damn-powerful whisper.

There is no place my soul feels more at home.

“All of nature begins to whisper its secrets to us through its sounds. Sounds that were previously incomprehensible to our soul now become the meaningful language of nature.” -Rudolf Steiner

Tall grasses often leave me breathless; especially as the evening sun ushers in. The blades sway ever-so-perfectly, as if there is a song being sung….  just for them. The setting sun casts its golden glint upon the blades… and instantly an entire field is aglow.  Everything seems to hush around me….

s i l e n c e d.

The evening breeze often produces a mumbled whisper.. a whisper that has always spoken to me as secrets. I used to revel in what secrets they were sharing… s i g h…  how i miss the power of my childhood imagination.

Now, as I age… I like to believe they are the whispers of a day gone by and the promises of a tomorrow.

Time’s Whisper

The voices of the ocean
course silently with the wind,
rising to rain
before the flood
that sweeps away mountains,
moistening leveled ground
with the kiss of life.
The voices of the ocean of humanity
course through the stream of time,
rising to rain
before the flood
that grinds down mountains,
and sweeps clean the sands of time
with the tides of history.
Listen deeply into the wind,
do you hear?
There is prophesy of a new pulse,
a new heartbeat, yet unborn,
within you.

11 April 2003
Manuel García, Jr.

I look forward to seeing what you in have store for Week 7 of Echo– Whisper. Susan & I invite each of you to participate in the project and show us your unique vision, your voice, your echo. Remember, to share your link in the comments here so I can add it to the roundup next Wednesday.

  • Go visit Susan’s Week 7 post for our other diptych. (which for the record, is my favorite one yet…)
  • Our Flickr Group for the collab. ~ Join Us! Find a partner there, read the guidelines and more!
  • Add the new Echo button (susan’s awesome design) to your blog if you’d like! Get the code here.


(Under) 2 Minute Background Technique

I’ve been experimenting with my iPhone recently, and discovered the free Ustream app which allows to me record videos and live shows with my phone. How cool is that? I’d really like to re-do this one, I was distracted (and stuffy) and it shows.

Super easy. Fabulously fast. Great for journals, or a layer on a mixed-media piece.  I think you’ll enjoy this faux batik, resist type background technique of mine; anyone can do it. Really.

What you’ll need:

  • 2 minutes of free time
  • Your art journal, or watercolor paper
  • A baby wipe
  • Acrylic Paint
  • Rubber stamp (or other object that leaves impressions)
  • Paint Brush/Water (optional)
  • Brayer (optional)

Products I used:

Easy peasy eh?

Artfully Yours,