Ice Jewels

click image above for slide gallery

Bright shiny objects just call to be photographed. After dumping the block of ice that had frozen in my garden wagon, I noticed the sparkling lights and winter colors and of course, could not resist a few photos and then patterns/reflections – voila! Ice Jewels.
The slide gallery shows all six of the designs that are derivative artworks from that wagon full of ice.

You can see four of them (framed and ready to hang or giftwrap) at the 12th Annual Art In Sixes holiday show at the Delaware Valley Arts Alliance 37 Main St. Narrowsburg, NY (Great Holiday Shopping at this event which features 168 artists and over 500 works of art!)

As you may know I also represent other artists via the virtual Gallery Number Nine and just want to add that six of us have work in the 2016 Art In Sixes show – the others are: Philip Jostrom, Tamara D’Antoni, Louis N. Pontone, Ramona Jan and Susan Miiller. And, of course you are invited to see all of our art online at Gallery Number Nine.

 

Gnome for the Holidays

DCortese_HolidaySwingingGnomeGIF

Click on the green square to see the holiday gnome swinging in the Christmas Pines

My garden gnome is now enjoying the winter out of the cold river winds. His favorite place is on top of the studio bookcase where he has a picture window view of the Delaware River.

Wishing you a joyful Christmas and Holiday Season 🙂

 

Does it have to be $$$ -OR- a healthy planet?

HoneyQueenBeeFlowerofLife_$orHealthBee populations are plummeting! Yet the Environmental Protection Agency recently sided with Dow AgroSciences to approve a new, highly toxic bee-killing pesticide called sulfoxaflor.

And now the EPA is considering expanding the number of crops this pesticide can be sprayed on to include corn, alfalfa, oats, and several other significant and widely grown crops.

Will you help? Tell the EPA to deny Dow AgroScience’s application to expand the registration of the bee-killing pesticide sulfoxaflor now.

Nearly one-third of our crops—including many vegetables, fruits, nuts, and seeds—depend on bees for pollination. But bees in our country are dying at unprecedented rates, and scientists are pointing to pesticides like sulfoxaflor as a cause.

A world without bees is unimaginable. Earthjustice is doing everything we can to save the bees, using the law and the power of the courts. But we need your help to change this latest proposal.

Help us ensure the health of the bees and our planet. Take action now to save bees!

That’s why I signed a petition to U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, which says:

“As a citizen concerned about our nations health and food security, I urge you to deny Dow AgroScience’s application to expand the registration of the bee-killing pesticide sulfoxaflor so that it can be sprayed on corn, alfalfa, oats, and several significant and widely grown crops.

Honeybees are dying at rates unprecedented in history, prompting the U.S. Department of Agriculture to warn that it is no longer confident in our ability to ‘meet the pollination demands of U.S. agricultural crops’; Rather than expand the number of crops that can be sprayed with highly toxic and systemic insecticides like sulfoxaflor, the EPA must take immediate steps to help bees recover. I join with other members of Earthjustice in calling for you to suspend the use of sulfoxaflor on all crops pending a thorough analysis of the impacts to bees and the many crops that depend on bees for pollination.”

Will you sign the petition too? Click here to add your name:

http://petitions.moveon.org/sign/save-bees-from-a-highly?source=s.fwd&r_by=10684519

Thank you.

 

New Spring Bags feature ‘Orchid’ – Pantone’s color of the year

I was definitely inspired by Pantone’s choice for Color of the Year, Orchid, which is a blend of mauve-rose-purple-pinks. I knew I had a Vanda Orchid image with these very colors and so, one of the new spring bag designs features an actual Vanda Orchid image, complete with spring greenery in the background.

Since I’m very focused on creating designs and art that incorporate the ancient and powerful Flower of Life, this pattern is also included within the two new spring designs.

I’m testing a new marketing strategy and am limiting the production of the Vanda Orchid and Sensuous Orchid Black Flower of Life designs on Cross-Body Hipster bags to only 200 of each design. This may be a terrific incentive or a total flop, but I won’t know unless I put it out there. Let me know if you have any opinions on this by commenting on this post, by sharing on commenting via the Facebook or other social media links below, or via email to me at debra at debracortese dot com.

To see larger images and full details of any of the new bags, just click the main image.

Welcome Spring…. please arrive soon!

 

New White Heart on Pink & Orchid Energy Waves

DCD_WhiteHeartPinks_GoldLocketNecklace

Finally produced a new design that feels right. Has been a bit of a challenge this winter to keep my muse and myself inspired. Very cold nights and days along with a bit too many ‘shades of gray’ of the no sun and dreary gray landscape in my studio window view.
However, a new White Heart on Waves of Pink & Orchid has emerged from yet another revisited photo. Seems I am drawn back in time on many levels since returning to my childhood hometown (Narrowsburg, NY).
The base inspiration for the new White Heart image was from my Miami garden so not that far back. What I once thought of as the dracaena plant turned out to be a cordyline and that is the basis for the new design. The fractal or overlaying grids of gray lines represent the energy lines of both the plants leaves and the interaction between the sun, the shadows and the plant. The White Heart developed after many variations of reflecting portions of the image in a variety of angles.
My intended outcome was to offer a design that is filled with the energy of unconditional LOVE. The surprise for me was that it is also filled with JOY and a SENSUALITY that evolved with the finished art.DCD_WhiteHeartPinks_LumberPillow

Unfortunately, I did not complete this in time to have any handbags produced for Valentine Gifts, however, you can order it on a necklace, a locket and pillows through my Zazzle shop. http://www.zazzle.com/debracortesedesigns

White Heart on Waves of Pink and Orchid is available on custom products, as a print on paper or canvas and it is also available for licensing. Just pop me an email at: debra at debracortese.com and let me know what you have in mind.

In the meantime, I’m sending waves of LOVE and JOY and SENSUALITY out to the Universe and can’t wait to see what returns 😉 LAW OF ATTRACTION…

NOTE: This design will be available on handbags – look for it in the new Spring 2014 collection.

 

The Universe is always sharing messages. What do you choose to listen to?

I’m in the process of rebranding my handbag business and all of the messages I am receiving reaffirm that my childhood passions for gardening, hiking, exploring, beeing in nature were the original blueprint for the story of who I am. Along the way, sacred geometry and Flower of Life joined my list of major inspirational alignments. The symbolic and energetic vibrations of Flower of Life and all of its variations have become the basis for many of my paintings, projects, and designs over the past decade, which is especially significant in light of the challenging background story of bankruptcy and foreclosure that I was living during that time. The energy and alignment that I experience while creating art and designs using the underlying grid that represents the Flower of Life and all of its power is phenomenal.

My close friends and family knew the background story and as the foreclosure process signaled that is was time to move on they also understood why I chose to return to my childhood home town of Narrowsburg, NY. It was time to review the full circle, time to help my only sister with the care of our 88 year old mother. Mom had a severe stroke in 2005, is paralyzed on one side of her body and needs full-time assistance for all the basic daily grooming and feeding activities that most of us go through on auto pilot. I now also realize from conversations and the posts of many Facebook friends that we are among so many others taking care of aging parents and, as much as possible, we are maintaining and expanding our own stories along the way.

One of the ways I maintain an optimistic perspective is to begin my day with great coffee, my two favorite inspirational daily emails (Thoughts from The Universe and Abraham’s Daily Quote). If that isn’t enough to get my energy and attitude in the flow, because some mornings just need an extra dose of positive energy – I’ll listen to a short meditation or watch an inspirational video.

Today I ‘listened’ to the messages that, not surprisingly, came through a link in an email, and followed one to the video on this post. I’ve been aligned with the work of Esther and Jerry Hicks/Abraham for many years and as I allow more of what feels right to me, I understand, to the point of tears of joy, why nature is such an inspiring, vital part of who I am and what I can share.

Please share your thoughts on this in the comments below and share this post with your friends (share buttons below).

Enjoy the video and NATURE!

The Universe Always Provides Signs. Pay Attention
a YouTube Video of Esther Hicks/Abraham that reminded me of the power of my connections to nature:

 

Seeds of Intention via Spiritual Connections Radio

Debra Cortese photo with art and handbag

I had the pleasure earlier this summer of meeting Mark Rawson along with Grandma Michelle during an art opening at The Stray Cat Gallery in Bethel, NY. That connection opened the door to a live radio chat with Mark and Pamela Latour on Mark’s “Spiritual Connections Radio” show.
The main topic of our conversation revolved around my “Create Your Own Seed of Intention” workshop/exercise. This seemingly simple exercise is not only fun to do, it engages playful images and memories and energetically connects you to your own source energy, the ideal place to be when ‘setting’ your intention for a specific goal!
Listen (when you have a spare hour – yes, it is that long and hopefully interesting enough to listen to the end).
Here’s the link to the recording: http://www.blogtalkradio.com/spiritualconnectionsradio/2013/11/08/debra-cortese-thursday-930pm-est

Please do participate- it’s free, fun, easy and you’ll remember your favorite childhood games, characters and more!
You can download the free pdf version of “Create Your Own Seed of Intention” HERE.
You will need to send an email so I know how many people are trying this exercise… and I’d love any feedback for future versions.

SHARE THIS POST WITH YOUR FRIENDS… you know, the ones who enjoy this stuff 😉
social media buttons below…

Snake in the Garden – Inspiration On Many Levels

Design step 1: nature in the form of this snake, just shows up and everyone at Silver Heights Farm is interested in learning more, observing the snake, making sure it is not harmed and where will it be released.

As many of you may know, I’ve been working several days a week at Silver Heights Farm, a certified organic plants nursery in Cochecton Center, NY. Every day has something new blooming or sprouting, and there’s always something to taste that I’ve never tried before.

Every day, we sow, prune, fertilize, re-pot, water, move, load and unload plants that will become food for literally thousands of people that live both close by and, up to hundreds of miles from the nursery’s location. Since watering or many of the garden tasks are a bit solitary, I imagine different scenarios for the plants: in one, a tiny pumpkin seed becomes a blue ribbon-winning pumpkin pie. In another, a combination of exotic basil and pepper plants creates the perfect accent in a secret recipe of a famous New York restaurant. My daydream continues to develop as Martha Stewart  is the first person to taste this amazing new creation. She is so incredibly seduced by the aroma and flavors of this dish that she actually swoons and in one sweeping motion falls right out of her chair and is saved from injury by her new DCD Rainbow Snake Print Bag that was conveniently blocking the sharp edge of a newly chipped floor board. Martha knew when she first held this bag that there was something, an energy/vibration that felt, well, protective and she admired it because it was such a joyful, bold and bright pattern, full of strong, soothing vibrations. It reminded her of the Flower of Life patterns she had been observing by a designer somewhere in the Catskills…

I do have a great time imagining and visualizing the possibilities 😉

All of my designs are created with the intention of sharing the beauty, power and magic of nature. This Rainbow Snake design reflects the energy of a powerful garden ally, the northern water snake* and this particular print is derived from the beautiful snake that my co-workers at Silver Heights Farm found while clearing a new garden area near the upper Greenhouse.

The point of all of this is that I am inspired daily by the beauty, power and magic of nature and I am compelled to share it with you via my art.
So…
here are a few images to demonstrate the process of creating this Rainbow Snake pattern:

Corinna, Leona, Jonathan and Debra (behind camera phone) trying to determine what kind of snake has come to meet us.

 left: Corinna, Leona, Jonathan and Debra (behind camera phone) trying to determine what kind of snake has come to meet us.

center: Apparently you determine the sex of a snake by markings on the underbelly, near the tail. I knew at once that the markings would make a fabulous pattern/print for my bags regardless of the sex of the snake!

right: Here’s the first example of the new Rainbow Snake Print on Debra’s casual tote bag. Check back at www.debracortese.com for more styles and products with this design. Click on the photos for larger views.

 

 

Apparently you determine the sex of a snake by markings on the underbelly, near the tail. I knew at once that the markings would make a fabulous pattern/print for my bags!

 

Here's the first example of the new Rainbow Snake Print on Debra's casual tote bag. Check back at www.debracortese.com for more styles and products with this design.

 

 

*note: This is the year of the Snake in Chinese astrology, another very interesting ‘connection’ of energies!

Here are just a few links to learn more about the year of the”Water Snake”:

http://visual.ly/what-will-year-water-snake-mean-you

http://www.chineseastrology.com/2013snakeyear.html

http://apanache.wordpress.com/2013-year-of-the-water-snake/

Another New Beginning – Snowbird in Reverse?

So much to sort out. Antique Oak Cabinet, paintings, furniture, books, yard and garden stuff, Steinway Piano, Pfaltzfraff brown drip pottery… feels like tons of stuff all for sale this weekend, Sat/Sun. Nov 10-11 in ESTATE SALE – so I can start over – again 😉

In case you have not already heard, I will be leaving Miami before the end of November. This was not an easy decision and I do realize that I while I’m finally doing the snowbird thing, I’ve somehow gotten it backwards!

I’ll be moving to Narrowsburg, NY, a tiny village at the narrows of the Delaware River about 100 miles northwest of NYC. This is the town I grew up in and the main reason I’m going there is to help my sister with the care of Mom, who is 87 and requires 24/7 care due to series of strokes and other complications.

The bright side is that I’ve been missing the mountains all year long and the idea of cross-country skiing again is absolutely delightful! PLUS, Narrowsburg, while still a rural, small town kind of place, has become a well-known art community. I’m hoping to find or create my own niche there and eventually to get the snowbird thing going in the right directions.

Before I can leave, I must cull my belongings – a personal choice for this chapter of yet another new beginning. So, if you’re in the Miami area, my “Estate Sale” is on Saturday and Sunday, November 10-11, 9 am to 4 pm each day. Here’s a link to the list of most of the items I’ll be selling. I want to travel light (not counting the furry felines) who will make the trip with me 😉