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Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Dear Lee DeWyze & FamiLee:

I'm Happy Thanksgiving ! 

Lee, I want to take this time to let you know how Thankful I am to you for sharing your gift with us. 
Thank you for inspiring me and bringing out this love of creating that I have never had before. 
Thank you for creating a soundtrack for my life
Thank you for bringing so many amazing people into my life, I cannot imagine a single day without them. 

I also want to Thank the entire FamiLee…Thank you for welcoming me into your group the way you did…. Making traveling for shows fun and getting excited about my art and encouraging me to create more. You are all amazing!!!! 
With today being Thanksgiving and everyone posting what they are thankful for and with the upcoming Holiday wishes coming up…. I have one for you…. I would love nothing more than for this fandom to get back to where we were… all working as one to promote and encourage Lee. “Pass the peas..” remember??  I know everyone is busy, trust me…. but I miss that. I miss when no one competed for attention or who is the biggest fan and who goes to the most shows or RT’s the most for radio play…. I think he has made himself so accessible to us that we take it for granted now. He is busy making his dreams come true and balancing a home life with Jonna as well ( also, thank you Jonna for your encouragement and being his Rock & inspiration ) 
We know he appreciates all of us but there is no way he can make time for us ALL the time. lol, heck when I get to sit down and check twitter, I am sometimes way too tired to get into conversations. Grown up life is hectic…. We all know that. Imagine how He feels.... He may seem quiet sometimes.. But I'm sure it's only because he is working so hard on his music which we all are excited for right? 
I want us to get back to making this about LEE… welcoming new fans, spreading the word and love of his music. He has a new album coming out soon, so now is the perfect time to come back together! I watched the AMA’s the other night and um… not to be bias, but Lee is way better than anyone on there and next year he could be up there. He deserves it!  
A friend found the most perfect quote:

“Music has a great power for bringing people together. With other forces in this world acting to drive wedges between people, it’s important to preserve those things that help us experience our common humanity.” – Ted Turner, Turner Broadcasting System

Happy Holidays Everyone!!! 
Much love ❤️


Friday, October 23, 2015

The thing about music is....

We are all addicted to something that makes the pain go away or make you feel anything... 
............Mine is music...........

No matter what kind of music you listen to, you listen to it for a reason. There is something about it that you relate to, you enjoy the way it makes you feel….
To me, it is inconceivable that there can be people out there that do not like any kind of music.  I think the world needs music. There is something about it that is just magical, don’t you agree? 

Music therapy has been proven to be 70% more effective than antidepressants.  I know this for a fact because I spent most of my teens on them and they did nothing to help..but music did. 

Music can heal emotional wounds, boost your self -esteem, help you release stress, wind down and connect with other people that feel connected to it the same way you do…  See …Magic. 
Now I post all the time about what inspires me. You all know by now that the music and lyrics of Lee DeWyze inspire me. It inspires me to create pictures to bring his songs to life.  When I listen to his voice and words, I just see them. Then I put them on paper and share them with the world.
I do not do it so that everyone knows who I am….
I do not have any plans on being a full time artist to pay the bills (let’s face it, I’m an ok artist, but not great. Ha ha) …
And I do not do it for the attention of Lee either….
The reason is quite simple: 
I do this because when I hear Lee DeWyze’s stunning voice and brilliant song writing; I get an overwhelming feeling that I need to express how it makes me feel. His music is like, the art of the soul, in my opinion it's a true expression of how music is supposed to make a person feel. 
Now, do I love the fact that Lee and his fans love my work? Yes, of course.  Do I get even more inspired to continue by their encouragement and support? Yes, but my main goal and purpose is to get the art and the stories out to people that may not be fans of Lee...yet;  people that have not heard of him before or people that just assume he is too “pop” since he was on American Idol. 
I still have hope for people… that they can still be inspired and appreciate true beauty and raw talent, not just brain washed music fans that love whatever the radio tells them they will love. I want those people to read these blog posts, see my art and be intrigued enough to go listen to him. I want them to listen for themselves and see what makes someone feel that strongly about an artist. What makes them fall so deeply in love with the sound of a voice or melody. 
THAT is my main goal
I am asking that if you are reading this, you please share it, re-tweet and post to anyone else that might read it as well. If you are a fan of music, any kind….you should understand where I am coming from. 
I am pretty passionate about the subject. I’d also love to hear what inspires you! A friend sent me a quote that she read somewhere that just fits. I am not sure who said it; 
“I am a firm believer that there is no wrong way to create. We should all follow our muses into scary, unfamiliar places, know the values and themes that make our individual hearts sing, and then weave them into our work” 
……I love this and feel that is what I have  been doing throughout Lee’s music journey thus far. 
I love ALL kinds of music. On any day if you took the ear buds from my ears to hear what I am listening to, I guarantee you’d have a hard time putting my tastes in a category: I can go from Lee DeWyze… to gangster rap… to Social distortion…to Disturbed…to Taylor Swift and then have an all-out 90’s dance party in my head.  As far as favorites, anyone that knows me will tell you  that when they hear LIVE, Poe or Lee DeWyze, they think of me.
I love all three of them, but in different ways. I have always been a LIVE fan infatuated with Ed Kowalczyk  ha-ha, Poe-  because she just “got me”. She was haunting and different and I just adored her (still do!) and then there is Lee who is just special. Lee’s music has found a place in my heart and soul that I never knew music can reach. I honestly have never been truly inspired before, which is why I am so fascinated about the subject. It’s an unreal feeling when it happens… That is something you want to share and want people to understand. 
Please check out Lee’s music… you will not be sorry. And new music is on its way and trust me, it’s amazing! 
Here is the link for Lee DeWyze’s website: http://leedewyzeofficial.com/
 Thank you for listening! 

Sunday, October 18, 2015

"Stone" by Lee DeWyze ... Reimagined ...

I'm back..... 
With Lee DeWyze being my muse, 99.9% of my art is a collaborative effort. Obviously he & I don't actually work together...but he creates stories that inspire me to bring them to life....that's collaborating, right? 

There are times when he is too busy or wants to just chill and can't keep up on social media. I don't blame him, but selfishly I must say...those times hit me hard. I mean, he IS my sole source for inspiration so when I hear nothing... I get unmotivated and uninspired. I do wish I didn't need him in order to create...but sadly, I do... 

I've been down lately, unable to create or draw or anything. I just wasn't feeling it... Until last week when my friend Mare told me about how SHE was listening to Lee and had a visual. She was very specific ...when she explained the scene to me, to me...it's basically a "continuation" of "Stone". She was listening to the song and had a visual of me, not being able to create , the lyric that struck her being "And I can feel no more...." And me lying by that river "where he threw his stone". I fell in love with this idea immediately ... I created an entire scene. Funny thing is, when Mare told me her idea I pictured a different lying position and ended up changing it. Without knowing, the pose I chose was the exact one she pictured! The circle of inspiration came full circle once again!!! 
Below is the original sketch to accompany the song "Stone" by Lee DeWyze: 

And here is my sketch after talking to Mare: 

After playing with some apps, I merged both sketches so they created a full story ; and Mare ( who is an amazing writer, wrote a line for my sketch) ...... It allows the song to take on a whole new meaning! Letting you SEE how I actually feel when I'm waiting to hear more of what he is working on, waiting to feel that energy and passion he puts into everything he does... I love that! I love that someone else "gets" it enough to  "see" it and allow me to bring it to life.....  

Thank you Mare! This is why I love you!!! 

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Throw back Thursday

Fact: I am an artist. I went to art school. 
I went almost 7 years without creating and was fine with it- gave it no thought. 
Since I first heard Lee Dewyze’s voice on American Idol in 2010 ….. 5 years ago…. My mind has been flooded with images, giving me a primal need to draw, paint and create. All of a sudden, this skill I had since I was little suddenly MADE SENSE, it has a purpose…. In that 5 years, I have created:
* painted 20 Paintings inspired by him voice, music and lyrics
*754 sketches which fills several sketchbooks- accompanied by millions of notes and ideas
I kinda think that this  is proof that Inspiration exists, don’t you?? 
I NEED that music to create…. More than air…. And if you’ve ever been truly inspired by something or someone.. you’ll understand, if not… then I sound crazy and I’m ok with that also. 


Monday, September 14, 2015

Works in Progress & East Coast Lee DeWyze Shows next week!

Hello Everyone! 
I apologize for being so quiet lately. Lots going on with My son’s BMX racing, work, etc. 
Hopefully I will have some art to post in the near future. I HAVE been working on a personal painting, so hopefully that will be done soon.  I also have two commission pieces that are in the works so I have been busy busy busy. I have a Lee show coming up next week and that always launches the sketching into super mode… so we ready. 
I hope is well and I’ll be posting more soon! 
This show will be at the Sellersville Theater in Sellersville PA with Leslie DiNicola on Tuesday 9/22/15. Here is the link to get your VIP and GA tickets : 
VIP: http://www.st94.com/event/905605/

GA: http://www.st94.com/event/905581/

 It is a beautiful venue. Hopefully I see you there!

Also, check out Lee's site for a show near you!!! http://leedewyzeofficial.com

Tuesday, August 25, 2015


Hi everyone! 
Just a quick note as I sit here watching all the videos from Lee DeWyze's show tonight ( thank you ladies!) .... This man is amazing; a true songwriter. His words...voice.... And passion are overwhelming. How can you NOT be inspired by him? I mean, seriously....I just don't have the words, just sitting here in awe because that's what his music does. 

...thanks all.... Good night 

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

"Open your eyes" & stuff ....

Hello everyone! 
I realize it has been a while since my last post. Work has been so crazy I barely have time to scroll through any social media unless someone specifically sends me something and I have also been trying to work more on ME but exercising more and all that jazz. 
I have done a few sketches in the meantime though: 

But the truth is, I have been kind of in a creative funk. I sit down to create and I just feel like I can’t some days. Those days are extremely hard for me and make me sad. I think it is mostly stress from everyday life like work, grown up things , etc.  However, then I have days where I cannot concentrate on anything else. I just have all these ideas flying at me and I end up spending an entire day writing ideas down on sticky notes. I love that though. Those days are ONLY brought on by Lee DeWyze music and when I am in a lull… I crave it. Does that make me an addict? If you could FEEL the way I do at times like this.. you’d be too. 
So I sit here, nervously tapping my foot and anxiously awaiting new music from Lee to get lost in. I am so excited. 
Hopefully this funk will end, as I have a show coming up soon. 
I had this idea the other day that I was pretty excited about. After my last sketch ; I noticed that I only have about 20-25 more pages left in this book. After those are filled, I will have filled 3 entire sketchbooks with about 200 pages per book. That is A LOT of inspiration. SO I was thinking…. I create images inspired by Lee DeWyze music and lyrics that touch me and I try my best over and over again to explain to you how special they are to me. haha, all joking aside…. I am a pretty complex person. There are LOTS of things you do not know about me, the things that brought me to be the person I have become or why certain things me so much to me. 
Now, granted I will always have parts of me that will always be locked instead. I found the perfect quote to explain why that is:  “I’m very picky with whom I give my energy to. I prefer to reserve my time, intensity and spirit exclusively to those who reflect sincerity”- Dau Voire. …. And even then I’m guarded, Always have been. 
Anyway, despite that; I have decided to make my next sketchbook a true Art journal. I am pretty excited about it and a little nervous at the same time. I plan to start out with a self-portrait and my artist’s statement. After that each page is going to give you a little bit of me and an image that reminds me of it. Family life, things that always made me feel safe, biggest fears, favorite things, quotes, etc.  
I have a feeling by sharing that stuff, you’ll be able to relate to my work more and understand why those particular lyrics touched me, or understand why I love horror so much or anything creepy. Obviously there will still be hundreds of Lee inspired drawings because they are such a huge part of me. You’ll maybe understand why I’d choose Lee’s song “Open your eyes” as the theme song of my life.

If you were watching a movie about my life, “Open your eyes” would definitely be softly playing in the background to enhance the dramatic narrative and the emotional impact of most of the scenes. (I told you I was complicated): 
“Open your eyes
You’ve gotta see the truth to see the lies…” , “You’ve gotta feel the lows to feel the high”, “What’s coming over me? I can barely breathe. Everyone can see. Everyone but me” , “Open you heart
Put together, what you tore apart?”
See? Deep and so fitting. The most important line though? “Remember where I end and where you start…”That’s always been important to me because like everyone else, when you get into relationships both romantic and friendships…. People lose a little bit of themselves and blur that line. I’ve been guilty of that several times. I have been finding “Me” again in my art and Lee’s music and let me tell you something: I love my life. I have an amazing husband that loves me, and amazing son and friends that have seen me through everything… but I missed “me”. 

The other day when I thought of this new sketchbook theme, I was telling mare about it and her response pretty much made my heart burst, like her words usually do: “Understanding a person’s art, whatever medium that is, is understanding them. Knowing their heart. When you find the heart in something, you find inspiration, you find connection, and even pieces of yourself... “  I LOVE that. It is so true.  What would your theme song be? Are you able to recognize choices you’ve made when you were not being yourself? What would YOUR biography look like if it was sketched out? I am extremely excited to see mine. 

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

When your muse plays hide & seek

…..I guess that’s being a bit dramatic, huh? My Muse is not lost; sometimes I just get in a funk and cannot find him. As most of you know, about 95% of my art is inspired by Lee DeWyze. Some people can argue that a true artist can work on anything, at any time. If this is true, then I guess I am not a “real” artist. Trust me, I have tried to do subjects that are not lee related. Those turn out ok, but there is nothing there for me; I am not attached to them. I know that is hard for some people to understand, but it is what it is. 

That being said, with my “Muse” being a touring, busy musician; he is busy. I have never been a needy person, but when life gets too busy for me to draw, or I don’t see posts and tweets about Lee creating…I can’t. I need to hear the new music, I need to explore new lyrics that spark new images in my head. 
For the last month or so, between my busy life and not being as active on social media, I have felt myself falling into a creative black hole. When this happens, it actually makes me sad. I have done a few sketches in the meantime, including a self-portrait, but I wasn’t feeling them. they didn't take me to that happy place. 

This Past weekend I watched the movie “Big Eyes”, the story of Walter & Margaret Keane.

It was about the famous “Big Eye” paintings in the 60's that became famous by an artist named Walter Keane; however it turns out that Walter never painting them. As a matter of fact,he was not an artist at all. His wife, Margaret Keane had been painting them for over 10 years and keeping this inside. I can not imagine how she must have felt! To have work that means something to you and no one knows where is actually came from. There is a scene in the movie where she talks about what her “Big Eyed” children mean to her. I was so moved by her because that is how I feel about my Lee art. They are not just sketches to me, they come from somewhere special. True Inspiration. You may think you have been inspired, but you don’t realize what that actually means until it finally hits you. 
A few of my favorite quotes from the movie that struck a cord with me are: 
Margaret: "People buy art because it touches them. Walter: You’re living in fairy tale land. People buy art because it’s in [the stores and in vogue]. They don’t get to discover it."

Margaret: "Why are you lying? You are taking credit for something you didn’t do. These children are a part of my soul"

"You don’t know what it’s like to put your emotions out"

Watching this movie sort of nudged me a bit to want to get back into the sketchbook. 
Last night, my husband went out for a mountain bike ride and I decided that enough was enough. If I could not think of visuals for lyrics, I was going to go straight to the source of my inspiration and do a portrait of Lee himself. We all know I am not the best at drawing faces… I have had some trouble in the past… 
I decided to put on my headphones, listen to Lee 's music and do a portrait. I took it so seriously too! Usually I just sketch with a No. 2 pencil and use my fat fingers to smudge. This time I broke out the sketching pencils and blending sticks I bought once and never used. Boy did that make a difference! 
I have never been one to toot my own horn. Actually, I do not even think my art is THAT good. I often feel that the praise is coming in merely because of the fact that the subject is a song someone likes, or just because they are Lee DeWyze fans,. Etc. Know what I mean? I know they like it, but there is always that doubt in my mind. And faces? Forget about it. My main style has always been no faces... You know, let the gestures set the tone and emotion....
 But Mostly because I am just not good at it. For instance, I recently did a sketch for one of Lee DeWyze’s new songs; “Give me something” For the life of me, I could not do the people’s mouths. So, I just left it as is. I know I’ll never finish it…. 
Well this time, I actually drew a face! I decided to draw a picture of Lee that was taken and posted by Vox concert series. 
I was so proud of it! I mean, it actually LOOKS like Lee. I've come a long way from my first portrait where he looks like he was stung by 100 bees. Haha. When Mark came home, I lifted up my sketchbook beaming with pride like a little kid. I was like “look what I did!!!!!!”  I can honestly say that although I have other sketches that are my favorites, this is the one I am the most proud of. I still have lots of room for improvement obviously... But still! 

Thank you Lee DeWyze, as always for giving me the inspiration I need simply by just doing your thing. 

Lee DeWyze is currently on tour! Go to his website for a venue near you! Get out there and see for yourself how amazing his man is!!! 


Thursday, June 25, 2015

#TBT and a thought....

Happy Thursday Everyone! 

Here is a little throw back sketch for ya from back in the day. It’s a Lyric sketch for “All Right” by Lee DeWyze 
“I told her she could stay the night…we were up to the morning light and that’s when I knew my friend that everything was all right…”
My post has nothing to do with that Lyric… but I was sitting here at the end of this very busy and hectic workday, thinking about all the running around I had to do AFTER work…. when Lee’s voice came on my iPod. Instantly I am calmed, I started thinking that this would make a great post….How amazing it is that a voice can feel like a security blanket. Instantly calming you and putting a smile on your face. This thought then lead to me thinking of this sketch because they are in a blanket fort… haha, I don’t know... I told you my mind is a confusing place. 
We will be away all next week, so I should be able to get a bunch of new sketches done. Stay Tuned! 
Talk to you soon! 

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

INSPIRATION : Paying it forward, a chain reaction

Warning: I again, am going to try to explain to you the pin ball effect that happens when my thoughts cause when I see one thing that leads to a million other thoughts…. 
I read this quote on Instagram a while ago that was posted by @Thegoodquote  (I highly suggest you follow them!) http://instagram.com/thegoodquote

“It’s amazing how quickly your mood can change, how deep your heart can sink and how much a person can affect you”
…we all know how this can apply to a person, but I feel it also applies to music and then how music applies to my art. 
Like, you can be having a horrible day… overwhelmed by the stress of your day or overcome with sadness for some reason. But then you hear a specific song, sung by a specific voice… and it all melts away. OR; it could have the opposite effect and you could be perfectly fine. Then hear the angst or pain in the lyrics and you can be overcome with a heavy heart. Music is some powerful S***. 
Speaking of powerful...Have you ever read anything posted by @PrinceEA  or seen his video posts on FB?
*photo belongs to Prince EA*

He is so inspiring! He is a rapper and activist that posts videos with his thoughts on politics, sociality, environmental and life issues.
I was introduced to his posts when Mark showed me a video called "Why most people die before 25" and I remember being so in awe by his words and the way he said them; we even had our 7 year old son listen. Watch that post here: http://youtu.be/oKAmujgS4mo?list=UUDgUAAHgsV2fFZQm2fIWBnA
Well I read a post he did the other day about a conversation he had with an artist friend Lori Gilbert (please check out her work, she is amazing!!!) http://lorigilbertfineart.com

When he asked “What is Art to you”, her reply spoke to me…. I totally get it; specifically when she said, “When I first started painting it settled my soul like nothing I had ever felt before…It just centered me in this really beautiful meditative space.…”
The reason I wanted to share this with you is because as I read what art meant to Lori, I knew exactly how she feels. Although my work is completely different and not on that level, when I am creating it definitely settles my soul. It’s my happy place. I am creating a world where beautiful music lives. 
(If you are reading this for the first time, All of my illustrations and paintings are inspired by the music and Lyrics of Lee DeWyze. 
In the post Lori also mentions that growing up she struggled with depression and anxiety, just as I had and how creating made everything look different. This is exactly how I feel. So by now you are saying, " I get it… you relate to another artist…” Yes I do, I love to hear how other people think like me when I spent most of my life around people I didn’t have much in common with. It’s the joy of social media! I’ve met so many amazing people that think like me and it really does make you feel less alone. The thing that caught my attention the most though was when Lori said, “I never need inspiration, I honestly am creative 365 days a year and just need a project” This statement fascinates me because art takes us to the same place…but I NEED that inspiration. I NEED the music; I NEED to know that Lee is creating more. Trust me, I’ve tried to channel other artistic outlets, but I can’t.  No commission piece, drawing something else meaningful to me… nothing else takes me to the same place Lee’s music does. I reached out to Lori to talk to her about this because I love to know the “whys”.  Let me just say, she is so sweet ! She’s planning to go back and read through this blog to get an idea of where I was coming from. I cannot wait to hear her thoughts on my blog to talk about the difference of needing to be inspired vs. not. 
This all brings us back to the original intent of this post. Music is some strong Sh**…
The other day I was having an awful day full of stress. I had this sadness in the pit of my stomach because I haven’t had any time to create and haven’t seen anything new posted from Lee. Then, that night… Lee had a "Stage It" show, played NEW songs and INSTANTLY I was happy! Ideas were flowing…. I needed that show. I am not even going to try to explain the feeling of contentment it gave me... the world was right again. 
What do you know about Lee DeWyze? 
That he won American Idol? Well let me tell you, he is the most amazing songwriter I have ever heard. He is my muse and I cannot create without his music. There are plenty of other songwriters out there that write amazing songs- a lot of them write for other artists to sing; there are a lot of amazing singers out there that have tons of people on their payroll to write them the songs they sing…. Lee DeWyze does all that himself. Of course there are people he works with, but he writes from the heart…from HIS heart, on his own. His voice is amazing, raw and full of passion. Lee DeWyze makes sure the music comes together the way he intended it to… This music, that fills my heart and helps me create in my happy place is the product of Lee himself… That alone is admirable and inspiring. There is no better feeling than seeing Lee live, to see his passion. Yes, I’ve seen him play live several times. I get asked, “don’t you ever get sick of the same show?” No!! Even if you see Lee two nights in a row, he never sings a song in the exact same way. Lee DeWyze is a true artist. This new album he is working on is going to blow your mind, I know it…. Go take a listen to Lee's album out now, Frames. You will NOT be disappointed, I promise!  I wish I could write more, but I don’t want to write a book. If you read back throughout this blog…you will get the idea. There is inspiration everywhere. I am fascinated with talking to people that inspire me, knowing what inspires them and sharing where this inspiration comes from. I love it all. Give Lee DeWyze a listen… you will see what I mean. 

THANK YOU Lee DeWyze, PrinceEa, Lori Gilbert and The Good Quote for inspiring me! This is my attempt to pay forward the inspiration you've given me to my readers. 
Please share this to keep that inspiration going and don't forget to check the links above! 
Thank you! 


Monday, June 1, 2015

Everything is connected ...

I have a little something I’d like to share with you that I typically don’t… 
Many times I try to do a post explaining the feeling I get when creating and how the ideas come to me when I listen to Lee DeWyze’s music. There is always at least one odd coincidence with whatever I come up with…. 
First I’d like to start with my creative process: 
  1. The ideas flow when I am listening to Lee DeWyze, When he posts new lyrics OR at times they will just come out of nowhere (so basically, ALL the time) 
  2. A visual comes to my mind and I usually go out in search of similar “poses” to what I am seeing in my head, so I have a visual guide to help with my proportions, etc. and place it into the world my mind created & make it my own. 
I know a lot of people do not give any thought to their gut feelings or intuition, but when it comes to my art… I do. I’m going to share with you an example…. 
Sometimes when I am scrolling down Pinterest or watching a movie, I’ll see an image that just affects me… like, I know I’ll be able to use it, I can feel it. 
I few months ago, I see this on Pinterest…. 

I do not know who the artist is, but I just thought that I should keep it because I was just drawn to it and thought I could use those hands in my own way someday….. 
Yesterday Morning I woke up with the urge to sketch. I did not have anything new to draw; I did not have an idea, nothing. I went about my day with this nagging feeling to draw, but had nothing. Well, after a couple hours of cleaning I sat down on the sofa to relax and check my phone. That same picture came up on Pinterest as “something suggested for me”. 
About 10 minutes after that, Lee posted new lyrics…

You can imagine my excitement when all of a sudden; out of the blue… he posts these beautiful lyrics … 10 min after I was reminded of this picture that just happens to fit perfectly! On a day I had the urge to sketch. A day I was home alone with no outside distractions. All of that… lead to this…. 

I love when this happens. This is WHY I love art. This is what happens when you are truly inspired. Unless you create, you might not understand… but you cannot always just sit down and create because you are allotted that time. It has to come with a force… that is when it is exciting and you fall in love with the creative process. That is when it becomes part of you. 
It’s funny because right after he posted, Mare texted me “what are you going to sketch???” and I just replied back that I already had an idea. 15 min later, I posted my sketch, then Jaime tweeted me this: 

…Funny how the world works. I love that and it only happens when I am bringing music to life…. I absolutely love that!
One last thing, I also had just gotten a journal the night before to keep with me to jot down ideas when they do just pop into my head unexpectedly….. 

You know, something like this happens with every single sketch I do.
All 523 of them and counting. It fascinates me and I hope whatever this is that responsible for my connection to the music and lyrics and takes me to this creative place never goes away …. 
-Jenn xoxo

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

INSPIRED by blood, sweat & tears: READ ME

”..And all of the ink that was bled from your hands has painted a picture that she understands…it’s amazing…” 

..WAIT…What?? …Those are not Lee DeWyze lyrics? Are they? No, they are not, They are lyrics to a song called “Amazed” by Annie Decatur Danielweksi (aka Poe) 
And why are his hands bleeding? That’s creepy….. 
Let me explain: Let’s start with the blood, as it can come across pretty creepy but I promise you it is not. The bleeding fingers represent Lee putting his all into his music. His entire heart and soul, like he always does. The birds, like in his feather tattoo are flying up representing him putting himself out there with his work and me connecting enough to visualize it. You see now? And that brings it back to that Poe lyric; “And all of the ink that was bled from his hands has painted a picture that she understands…it’s amazing” That truly IS amazing in my opinion. 
Now, on to your next question…
Why would I do a picture of Lee playing his guitar and quote another artist’s lyric? This is another example of how the “circle of inspiration” is growing and how at the strangest times all the things that mean something to me seem to come together and make sense. 
You see, It is true, I have never been inspired to create before Lee and his music. No other voice has affected me the way Lee’s has. HOWEVER, when I was in high school I was a huge fan of Poe. Her music was haunting & beautiful yet dark and angry… she “got” me. Not the way Lee’s music did, but still….. 
If I could explain the comparison on how each voice affects me differently it would be this: 
Poe’s voice and lyrics are a lot like my inner voice.. like if I was venting, hoping or just needing to shout out a scream just to feel better….  but Lee’s voice and lyrics are comforting to me, like after screaming out in frustration, his music is kind of like a comforting arm around you telling you it will be ok and taking you home. Make sense?

Although the impact Poe’s music had on me was way different than Lee’s, I have all kinds of stories about certain songs and how they fit into my life or remind me of certain events at that time… but those will stay in my head, not sure you could handle those ….
Anyway, I was listening to my iPod at work and “Amazed” came on… I have listened to this song way more than a million times over the years, I know all the lyrics by heart…. But this time, that lyric… it hit me, it made me think of how I feel being inspired by Lee’s music and there is was… a visual! I never had a visual for someone else’s lyrics ever, but when I did… it was OF Lee… weird, huh? 
I have sketched a Poe song recently that you will recognize: 

I am the kind of person that then thinks back to the “whys” I mean, it did not make me want to draw back then... but there was something about it I was drawn to… now there is a reason. Know what I mean? I’ve told you numerous times before how exhausting it is to live inside this brain, you are feeling it now, aren’t you? Ha-ha. 
I just really wanted to share that with you because as the idea came, my mind was blown and I was soooo excited. Here is a link to hear the song: http://youtu.be/smc18aecLuI 
The funny thing is, maybe about 2-3 months ago, I was listening to Poe and wondered what happened to her, was she making new music? I was able to find some stuff she has done under other names besides Poe (this having to do with a major falling out with the record label) Well I found a few songs she had done with a band called ; Conjure One. They all had a slight techno-y feel to them, which isn’t really my style, but there was this one that I am now obsessed with. It is called ‘One word” and I tell you this in all honestly, from the bottom of my heart that if you could put how Lee’s music, lyrics and voice make me feel into a tribute song…. This would be it. I am posting the link to that song below, I will warn you, the opening “music” sounds a little creepy… but keep listening, I know you will love it and you will know EXACLTY what I am talking about. 
Listen to “One word” here: 

Another cool fact about the song “Amazed” by Poe, it’s on her album called “Haunted’. It you listen to this album, as first you will be like, huh? Because each song is telling a story that doesn’t really make sense to you, with all these voices and talking before and after…. The album is a soundtrack to coincide with a book called “House of Leaves, written by her brother, Mark Danielweksi, who is an amazing writer. I am actually re-reading this book now. If you ever have a chance, purchase this album and the book. I know you will love it. 
I’d also like to add, If Lee and Poe ever collaborated, I could die happy (and yes, I have a Poe song for that too)... that would be so amazing and you have no idea how happy that would make me!!!! 


Thursday, May 7, 2015

Just a random lunch time thought….

Well, not random to me, as it usually crosses my mind a billion times a day. As you all know by now 99.9% of my sketches and paintings are inspired by Lee DeWyze and his music. I have days like yesterday where I am trying to concentrate on work and out of nowhere my mind gets flooded with all these sketch ideas that I have to hold in until I get home and hopefully have the time to sketch them out. I cannot really explain it, but it’s like a flood gate just opens and I cannot think of anything else. Although it’s frustrating when I can’t just drop everything and work on my art, I love those days. I get excited about getting them onto paper or explaining them to someone (even though there are literally only two people in the world that “get “ my ideas and can picture them as I talk. Lol) I love that. 
Then there is the other side of this creative connection…. I would never change anything about what inspires me and the way it feels, but it is frustrating that I CAN NOT and have no desire to create when I am not inspired. When I cannot create, I get sad.  I saw a perfect quote once, “Art is the overflow of emotion into action” by Brian Raif. Exactly.  It’s another thing that is hard to explain because I do not even understand it myself. I went to Art school, I could always “draw”…I just never really wanted to. I can honestly say that I cannot create until it is Lee inspired. It could be as small as knowing he is going into the studio. 
I could not have an art job where I had to go in everyday and draw what people tell me to. That does not make me happy. The ONLY time art makes me happy is when I am listening to that voice and zoning in on those lyrics where something just clicks and I need to create a visual for it. It’s my happy place, it kind of feels like when I lived at home with my grandmother if that makes sense. Like I am supposed to be there.  This bothers me sometimes. I’ve always been pretty independent and learned very young that I can’t reply on other people, so sometimes it bothers me that my creativity is 100% dependent on Lee and him creating his music. It’s the only thing that drives my creativity and that confuses me.  
Do they have support groups for this kind of thing? 

Monday, April 27, 2015

Dear Lee & Jonna.....

Hello Everyone, 
Sorry for the long absence, I have been so busy, I’ve hardly any time to write or draw. I do have some projects in the works, however I'll tell you about those another time. 

I’d like to take this time to ask all of you to send love and prayers to Lee & Jonna. 
Per Jonna’s message, Their dog Bear, is in the hospital 
Anyone that is a fan of either Lee or Jonna knows that Bear is very important to them and we practically watched him grow as a puppy along with them. 
I just want to let them both know that we are all thinking about them and are here for support.

Lee & Jonna, From the bottom of my heart I am so sorry that you have to go through this. I will not pretend I know how you feel exactly, but I could imagine and it breaks my heart. 
As many of us know, the thought or scare of losing a pet is devastating. They are not just animals; they are our best friends, our family, our children and the ones you tell your deepest inner feelings to. You know they will never judge, just listen and comfort you with their unconditional love…your biggest fan of all. 
If you look back throughout the time you spend with your pet, you see love and  milestones of your life shared. 
If you need anything, I'm sure I can speak for everyone when I saw we are here. 
Much love, hugs and prayers coming your way! 

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Why I think you'll love "Stone" by Lee DeWyze

Critic Vs. Fan
What exactly does it mean to be a fan and to be part of a fandom? What is the difference? I think this differs from person to person, but I can tell you one thing, my perception is different than it once was. I’ve always been a fan of music, where I bought the music, went to concerts and paid extra attention when those bands were on TV or the radio. As far as fandoms go, I was under the impression that these were reserved for the phantics, the crazy people, the boy band lovers. That was until I became a Lee DeWyze fan and before I got to know my friends in the Lee DeWyze fandom, the FamiLee. Cheesy to you? It’s not. I’ve met the greatest most loyal friends I have ever had in this FamiLee. It works just like a real family. We argue, we disagree, but at the end of the day we are all there together to support something we all love…Lee DeWyze. That is all that matters. Not who buys the most, who goes to the most shows, not who agrees or disagrees with his personal choices… It’s about Lee as a songwriter, singer and musician. 
So who is Lee Dewyze? People outside the fandom might just say “he is that guy that won American Idol; he is another white guy with a guitar."Guess what? He is so much more than that. 
For those of you that don't know who Lee is,  would you like to hear about Him from the perspective of a music writer; that gets paid to write about anyone they are asked to write about ? That has only listened to a couple of his songs?? 

OR would you like to hear about Lee Dewyze from the perspective of a fan, someone that knows his music, knows what he is capable of? The second, right? That is where you are going to get a true gage of someone’s talent, to read about how they touch other people’s lives and hearts on a daily basis.

I invite you to read back through this blog to get an idea of just how much Lee inspires me to create art and hear the stories behind each one , but this post; this post is dedicated to explaining his music. Lee is currently working on a new album and I can not even begin to tell you how amazing the new music is. We have only heard a few new songs at shows...but it's going to be amazing. 

I'd like to tell you about Lee's new song "Stone". I'm going to tell you about it from a Fan's perspective. To be fair, I'm going to also include a side by side comparison to the "Top characteristics of a great song" according to the "music business" . 

Why should you keep an eye out for Lee’s new song “Stone” being released soon? 

Characteristics of a Great Song
Lee DeWyze’s new song“Stone”
1. An idea that has an original element; if it's been done, it's not great.
-Stone: Everything Lee writes is original. People have compared him to Mumford & Sons, but I never saw that. I’ve never heard a song crafted the same way. “Stone” has this powerful emotional impact . It makes you feel hopeful and somber all at the same time. The passion that comes across in this song is overwhelming
2. A common thread, musical and/or lyrical, that people react to on a gut level; if they don't relate, it's not great.
- Stone: This one actually made me laugh out loud. I do not think it’s news to anyone that I relate to Lee’s music and lyrics. Lots of people relate to him and his words, it is what makes Lee so special. You can see HIM and yourself in every single song he writes. So are his lyrics relatable? …hell yes they are. Only a great song writer can make you feel a song the way Lee does. “Stone” pulls you in until you are rocking to the music along with him… feeling it in your bones .  
3. A killer hook. You need one line that sums it all up and concentrates the message and the emotion into one climactic moment; if there's no payoff, it's not great.
-Stone: “Lay my body down” This is the definition of a killer hook…. While he is stomping his foot and strumming his guitar.. it makes you stomp along and sing and feel it. You want a visual? Think of a Baptist church scene while someone is being baptized… so much passion, hope, renewal... all while singing and clapping….
4. A well-reinforced hook. The story should create a tension that peaks or resolves itself in the hook. Also, people have to be able to remember what your song is called when they go to the record store to buy it or call up the radio station to request it; if there's no build and release, it's not great.
-Stone: “down in the river where I threw my stone”…This lyric hits every point listed above. It creates that tension, and easily reminds people what the song is called, “Stone” I’ve only heard this song live, but this hook gets stuck in your head and that’s ok with me. 
5. A great story, even if it's a simple emotional snapshot, needs to have something interesting to draw the listener in; if it's boring, it's not great.
6. Real feelings; if it's fake, it's not great. 
–Stone- (#5 & 6) I am going to speak to these two characteristics as one.. The story this song tells you is extremely emotional, passionate and real. All of Lee’s songs come from real feelings, there is no denying that. “Stone” however seems so raw and personal.. it draws you in and can either make you feel hopeful or lost depending on your own mood when listening. It takes a truly great songwriter and song to make you feel so many emotions in 3 ½ minutes. 
7. A great publisher or plugger to get it cut; a song isn't great until it's out there doing its job, touching lives, and earning money.
**I’m still thinking about this because I am not sure I agree with the statement that a great song has to earn money….There are way too many songs to count in the world that make millions that have none of the characteristics listed above and only make money because they are force-fed to us by the industries. I am not the type to bash ANY artist publically so I will not give examples, however I know we all can name several  *wink*
So there you go…. Using the knowledge of a professional music standards AND the point of view from a passionate music fan…it’s official:  “Stone” is a fantastic song and Lee is an amazing songwriter… BOOM.