Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Mini Vacation

Here is a glimpse at our 4th of July mini vacation in Sioux Falls. Typically when we go on a trip I average at the very least 100 photos a day, but not this trip.

I was so busy catching up with friends and family, my camera spent most of the trip in my purse. After a family BBQ at my oldest son's place, Lissa and I headed to my friend Jillian's house. There was so much to catch up on we talked until wee hours of the morning. Then early Friday we were off to Dawn's where we spent the day playing with the kids and visiting with Dawn. 

Saturday I spent the entire day with my dear friend Maria. We started the day of just visiting at her place. Then we headed down town and my camera finally came out of my purse. First we wandered around Philips avenue window shopping and enjoying all the sculptures. You can see a few of the sculptures Here. Then a short break from the heat at the Philips Dinner to enjoy a late lunch and some delicious malts.   After that we headed to the Falls to walk off our yummy treats. You can check out the photos from the falls Here.
Before we headed home on Sunday we enjoyed a pick nick lunch at Seratoma Park with friends and family.

Just before we left we decided a group shot was in order. Unfortunately one of my granddaughters some how managed to completely hide from the camera and a few friends had to leave earlier so they aren't in the photo either.
 On the way home we ran into a bit of a storm.
 At least in Mr. & Mrs. G's Durango we were nice and dry, unlike the poor folks on motorcycles.
At one point the rain was coming down so thick and hard I thought we were going to have to pull over also.
 Sissy and Bubba who are both afraid of storms found a way to ease their fears.
As mini vacations go this one was very hectic, but then trying to squeeze a year and a half of catching up into four days is no easy task.

Friday, July 19, 2013

FF: Telling it like it is

The business woman in me is telling me to post only the positive and not to over share. The emotional human in me is saying the hell with that, tell it like it is. As you can guess by the title the emotional human has won this round, so I won't blame you if you skip the first four fragments. I just think it is time to get this out there. Should you read my more emotional fragments and decide to offer encouragement, advice or even criticism I will be both delighted and grateful.  
Being an artist is confusing. Grief is confusing. Let's face it life is confusing.

Photographic Art by Nita Davis. Title: Confusion

People who know me will tell you that I am one of the most optimistic people they know.  In reality that is one of the masks I wear. Being optimistic does not come easy. I am not always happy, I don't always know what is the right thing to do or say.  Unlike many artists who channel pain and hardship into their art, most of the time such feelings tend to block my creativity. You see I don't like to create things that to me don't express the positive side of life.

Grief and confusion

When my husband suddenly passed away last year I expected the transition from wife and caregiver to independent woman to be difficult but I really didn't know just how confusing and hard it would be.  I loved my husband dearly, however being the caregiver of a double above the knee amputee who suffers from Bipolar disorder 24/7 for fourteen years took a major toll. So much so that my first emotions were shock mixed with relief, quickly followed by guilt for having felt relief and sorrow. I've run the gamut of emotions over the last year and a half and in all honesty it has gotten harder in the last few months. All I will say now is that the above quote is so true, grief is filled with so much confusion. I could write an entire post on this subject, but that would be more like a book.

Artistic Confusion: Self Doubt
I know exactly how Elisabeth Shue felt! For years friends and family have been saying how talented I am, either at writing like in this post, or with drawing or photography or my photographic art and I just keep wondering if they are just blowing smoke. We all know that friends and family are not the best judges of talent. I don't really doubt that I have a level of skill but is that skill really good enough to be called talent? More importantly is it enough to actually earn a living?

 Company Confusion
 One last emotional fragment. I sure hope Jack Welch is correct.

Trying to make a living as an artist takes more than just hard work. Although Artisitx Network LLC is a family owned business it is my dream and the weight of it's success or failure falls to me. Val and Ted are both artists like myself only neither have any business training, experience or education so while they do help make decisions the bulk of organizing and promoting the business falls on my shoulders. Which is okay, I mean it is my dream and I am the one that convinced them it was a good idea to start the business. Here we sit nearing our four year mark and while last year we broke even, at this point we are no longer breaking even. We have discussed making major changes in our focus from creating memory photos for individuals using their photographs to focusing on our portrait photography, but even with the change in focus I sincerely doubt we will break even this year unless we can come up with funds for marketing. I made a promise to give the company five years to turn a profit but I am getting discouraged and wonder if I should just write off my losses and go back to creating art just for the pure joy of it. 

Now for some fun fragments:

Friends and Family
This month got off to a joyful start with a much enjoyed trip to Sioux Falls, SD to visit friends and family over the weekend of July 4th. I will try to pull myself together this weekend and get some of the photos posted on my blogs.

If you are wondering what I have been doing since we got home from our weekend away this next picture pretty much sums it up.

Who says video games are just for kids?

In an attempt to pull myself out of this funk, I have decided to go back to taking early morning walks. So far I just walk to the end of our street which is on a hill. We live at the bottom of the hill. This shot was taken half way to the top.

Although I haven't been posting on my blogs I have been taking photos to post. Here is a shot I took last Friday for Weekend Reflections. Better late then never.
Weekend Reflection

This afternoon I sat in the front yard for about 20 minutes trying to capture the lightening from a passing storm. I was happy I got this shot because the lightening strikes were few and I kept missing them. The storm passed just to the south of us so all we got was some wind, a bit cooler air and of course some beautiful stormy skies.
Sky Watch Friday

To wrap up my fragments I leave you with my life motto:

Thank you for stopping by, please be sure to hop over to Unknown Mami's to join in this weeks Friday Fragments.
Also linking up with:

Wednesday, July 10, 2013


After a long weekend away visiting family and friends in Sioux Falls I came home tired but with a revitalized sense of purpose. Last week while creating this I had an idea for a very different piece but wasn't exactly sure how I wanted to do it until I got home from our mini vacation. I knew I wanted to create a piece that represented the infusion of hopes and dreams through education.
The creative juices were definitely flowing yesterday. Not only was I able to find all the right photographs for the piece and complete the artwork, but I also wrote a short verse to go along with the artwork.  Here are the results.

Title: Infusion; 16x20 prints available through Artistix Network LLC

by Nita Davis

One cold dreary winter day I crossed the threshold of an old deserted school house. Easing into a long vacant seat, I couldn't help but feel a warmth seep right down to my heart. Listening intently I thought I heard a soft voice whisper "Although my seats are long empty,  sit quietly and you will feel the struggles, the excitement, the laughter that once filled me from wall to wall. I sheltered and protected so many young minds as their lessons were imparted. In return each child left a bit of themselves upon my boards." There I sat in wonder as the spirit of a hundred years infused my soul.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Inspirational Art: Beyond the Mask

Here is a little back story on this art piece.
While wandering the shops in Keystone, SD I came across this animated manikin and decided to try and capture it with a soft exposure.  When I got home and looked at the original photo I was pleased with the softness but a little disappointed with the motion blur. Yet I still liked the photo and wanted to use it to create an inspirational piece that dealt with the reality that most adults wear masks of some sort, whether to conceal or protect their true selves. After some thought I came up with the wording and how I wanted to depict the idea through the addition of photos that represent an innocent exuberance and a more mature caution. Here is the original photo.

Linking up with:

 Wordless Wednesday
My Memory Art

Monday, July 1, 2013

Rediscovering my groove

Here it is Monday already as I sit here wondering why I am just getting around to updating my blogs. Well the truth be known the older I get the harder it is to get back in the groove of things when my routine gets disrupted. I have missed out on joining the fun at  Jame's Weekend Reflections, but at least I can still hop over and check out the great photos everyone else shared. Thankfully I am still able to link up with Friday Fragments, Sky Watch Friday and Sunday In my City. Hopefully I will rediscover my groove soon.

Now on to my Friday Fragments well. . . okay so it is Monday at least they are still fragments.

My week started off with a trip to Keystone. This fragment is continued on my South Dakota photo blog for Sunday in my City, just click on the link to take a virtual visit to Keystone, South Dakota.

Then my Son-in-Laws' mother came for a visit and spent the week with us. It was a fun week with the back yard becoming a campground.

We also had a short visit from some dear friends who stopped for a few hours on their way through Rapid City while headed to school in Wyoming. When I saw how they had secured their luggage to the top of their car I couldn't help but take this shot.

Have you ever seen such cute gargoyles? This is our two cats, Belle on the left and Tiger on the right. Trust me one must beware when going up or down the stairs as they guard the staircase and feel no qualms about batting people as they walk by. 

Sky Watch Friday Submission
It was such a beautiful week with bright blue skies and fluffy white clouds, unlike the week before when we had this nasty storm roll through.

I think it is time to go back to using a daily planner and schedule, schedule, schedule my week! Maybe then I will get back on track. Fellow bloggers, do you plan out your blog posts and if so how far in advance to you typically plan?