Embracing life in meaningful ways - exceptional artist LIONA HOTTA talking about her artistic journey and the launch of an exciting new on-line learning opportunity 2
Today's article will take you on a journey into the life of a once rebel "undisciplined" child who grew up to be an exceptional mandala artist praised for her talent all around the word.
As you all know, Liona Hotta's extraordinary art distinguishes itself from others' for its sensual explosion of colours, perfection of shapes, and the vibrant positive energy it contains. I hope you enjoy seeing part of her creations depicted in marvelous photographs throughout the article.
How Liona started this amazingly inspiring career not only as a painter, but also as a musician, here is for you to find out.
Who is Liona Hotta and how did she grow up to be the artist she is today?
I like to think of myself as a person who wants to express herself through multiple forms of art.
Since very young I loved singing, painting and dancing. These arts were very present in our home, and although we were growing up in a demanding agricultural community, all members of my family were or are still practicing some form of art. It’s no wonder that I ended up marrying an artist (photographer) and now we share the love for that art too.
Artist LIONA HOTTA (photo credit to photographer Tomoyuki Hotta)
As a little girl I was a rebel. Since I was a non-diagnosed dyslexic, I had to go through hard times being called a brilliant but undisciplined child.
I continue to be very untidy and unorganized. I always listen to my feelings more than my brain. Time has taught me though that I needn't apologize for my carelessness and better continue to listen to my heart.
This coming June I will be celebrating my 50th birthday and I am truly happy with who I have become and with what I do.
Apart from painting I also perform as a singer. I am blessed with the companion of a number of talented artists who play with me in our concerts.
Over the last 3 years our band, Liona & Serena Strings has been immersing in a Sephardic music project, with which we traveled and performed all over Spain, in so many beautiful locations and theaters. This year we also had the pleasure and honor to travel and perform concerts in India (Kolkata, Delhi, Goa) and North Macedonia.
Liona and Serena Strings music band | Youtube | Website | (photo credit to Tomoyuki Hotta)
With such a busy singing career, and having to travel such long distances, how did you actually find time to start painting on rocks?
My romance with stone painting started when I was hosting intuitive vocal workshops.
I was looking for a way to make little personal presents for my students who were about to finish a course I was teaching. I decided to search for ideas on the magic internet and this is when I fell in love with mandala painting on little stones.
Has life changed for you in any ways since you started painting?
It did change tremendously.
At the beginning I was only painting at night. I immediately noticed that my sleep was improving as I was falling into it easily and peacefully.
Later, as I was making mandala-dotting part of my daily routine, I could see how it was also helping me relax and center.
At first I was just counting dots. This came to me as a natural habit that originated in the need to assure symmetry while painting (I discovered I loved symmetry).
Soon I realized I was thinking of absolutely nothing while dotting - my mind was quiet for long minutes. It became my only meditation habit (oh, I’m such a restless person I could never sit and meditate like everyone else).
Later I began listening to music, practiced guided meditations and affirmations while painting. Pretty soon I noticed how my whole life was changing - I felt more centered, calm, and able to better handle life’s hassle and challenges. Today I can actually sit down and meditate like the rest of the people... what a joy!
Starting with the 1st of December I hear you are launching a series of courses on-line about dotting mandalas with a brush. Tell us more about this upcoming event.
My most recent project is the online course “How to dot your mandala with a BRUSH"
A while ago I realized that the international dotting community is divided into those who dot with dotting tools and those who dot with brushes (and lately there is a third group rising of cone dotters).
Somehow there is (in my opinion) a misconception about brush dotting that it is hard, complicated or “reserved” for the “more capable” artists.
Firstly, I don’t think it matters what we create art with: dotting tools, brushes, sticks, fingers.. art is art.
Secondly - it's all but wrong - dotting with a brush is easy. It’s a technique, you learn, you practice and you do it (just like about anything else in life).
This course is built to take you by the hand and step by step help you understand, practice, get confident and apply this technique. And I do not offer it as a replacement for dotting tools, but as an additional enriching way to add to your backpack of possibilities.
This is a 4 weeks course, with lessons dropping once a week, beginning with December 1st. All materials of the course are permanently available to signed up users. You will be provided with access to an only-member Facebook group for this course"s participants. We will have Q&A live sessions once a week during the course, and from time to time afterwards, when needed and required by the group members.
I have opened enrollment pre-sale of this course (follow link HERE) .
There is also an early bird price offer which will be kept open until Monday, November 18th. The course will begin on December 1st and last date to sign up is November 30th.
All details are in the course sales page. Please email me if you any have further questions in case I missed any of them on my social media (firstname.lastname@example.org). I’ll gladly write you back.
Sending you all love and light,
I LIVE A LIFE OF COLOURS- ARTIST ALINA PRODAN TALKING ABOUT COLOURS OF CHILDHOOD AND THEIR IMPACT ON HER ART 0
Today I would like to introduce you to an astonishing artist whose work has never failed to amaze me every time I come across her amazing creations.
I love Alina Prodan not only for what she paints. I love her because she only speaks with her heart, and there is this humble kindness and warmth in her words that always makes me feel I'm with friends, that I'm at home.
The most beautiful thing she said to me was: "I wish we could also publish a few words in Romanian just for my mother, so she can read about me". And so I write:
Mama, aveti o fiica minunata, cu un har ceresc, si o inima de aur. Va felicit ca ati crescut un copil atat de bun si de inzestrat si mi-ati daruit o prietena cum rar se pot intalni intr-o viata. Imbratisari cu drag. (Mother, you have a wonderful daughter, with a gift from God and a heart made of gold. I want to congratulate you for raising a child so good and talented, and for giving me the rare opportunity to make such a great friend in my lifetime)
I hope you enjoy the story Alina wanted to talk about: the colours of her childhood and how they reflect in her art.
Yours, Christine Onward
Each season in the village had its own unique glory, its own colours, smells and emotions attached; but it is the autumn colours that I carry with me all the time, their spectacular brightness and the multitude of colours everywhere around us.
My village colours had an enormous impact on who I grew up to be. Even now, the colours I choose for my mandalas come from those beautiful memories of autumn falling on us, the fields, the forests, the sky, or the clouds above us.
I’ve been painting since I was born. Most of my painting happened in my mind though, because I never had the courage to actually do it. I did enjoy watching art, visit museums, art galleries. That was all the art I would dare to involve myself into…All these until 2 years ago when I took up painting mandalas on rocks and canvas.
For the last two years I have been painting mostly at night and during the weekends when I’m free from work. I love listening to music before and during painting. I like listening to Debussy – Arabesque and light incenses as part of my painting therapy. They help me calm down the noise of my thoughts and breathe again.
What astonishes me the most is how a colour can have such a powerful impact on us.
When I paint, my colour choices are influenced by my general mood to a great extent. I also consider the combinations of colours that are pleasing to the eye. The details of my designs are very elaborate, therefore every little line, every dot I lay has to be perfect. And all these because the energies I gather within my work have to spread charm, harmony and beauty to each and every one of you.
The stories are endless when it comes to colours and my art of cirlcles and dots. But I could sum them up in just these words: I LIVE A LIFE OF COLOURS. And you?
Toby, recently taking up painting, mostly on the indoor walls
Rocking the World – Australian Artists Making Their Mark in the World of Painted Rocks 4
The Indigenous art of Australia is considered to be the oldest unbroken tradition of art in the world.
Some Indigenous rock art paintings are estimated to be around 40,000 years old. They are located in the Pilbara Region and Olary district of South Australia.
Aboriginal rock art in the Kimberley, Western Australia could be the oldest in the world. More details HERE
Original Aboriginal rock art "Dinuni" by Biripi artist Russel Saunders OAM
ROCKING THE WORLD – Australian Artists Making their Mark in the World of Painted Rocks
There are a great number of extraordinary Australian rock artists whose talent and expertise have reached the farthest and widest corners of the world. For all their hard work and passion I can only show my respect and gratitude. However, in this article I am only aiming at talking about five of the many Australian artists whose work I greatly admire:
ELSPETH MCLEAN – ETHEREAL TOUCH OF COLOURS
The critically acclaimed rock painting artist, Elspeth McLean of Perth - Australia has been known to create some of the most vibrant and hypnotic designs. In the last years her original approach to rock painting has made the greatest impact onto the rock art community worldwide.
What I mostly admire about Elspeth’s work is not only the extraordinary dotting skills she never fails to amaze us with, but also the array of colours she puts together to create positive moods. In her art I find energy, passion, strength, and motivation to overcome all things that come with life.
KARIN GETAZ – FLUID EMOTIONS IN BRILLIANT HUES
From the Australian Tropics in the far North of Queensland - Australia, Karin Getaz has been “conquering” the world of painted rocks with mesmerizing elliptical constructions and other harmonious dot designs.
I am always in awe of how, with the graceful movements of her brush, Karin creates romantic moods. It is art that allows emotions to flow hypnotically with colours and invite you to dream.
Art of fluid emotions and brilliant colours by Karin Getaz | Instagram |
TAMMY WARD – LOVABLE, "AWKWARD", AND FUN
Tammy Ward is an artist with an inexhaustible energy to create and offer joy to the world. The electrifying colours she uses as well as her brilliant imagination and attention to detail have attracted a considerable amount of attention in our community of rock painters. Tammy’s flamboyant pirates, dragons, the beautiful owls and bright fish are some of the most sought after rock collectibles in the world! If you travel to Queensland, Australia make sure you take a moment to visit some of the local markets in Gladstone or Hervey Bay to see her joyful works of art.
Fun art in electrifying colours by artist Tammy Ward at Awkward Art Painted Rocks | Facebook | Instagram |
SCOTT DODSON – ROCKS WITH WHIMSICAL TEMPER
What I mostly admire about Scott’s rocks is that you can always expect them to talk to you!
His exquisite rock art will charm you with its energy, originality, and youth. You will find in Scott’s rock collection some of the most dazzling characters: mummies, werewolves, scary clowns, the bewitching gnomes and so on. With bright blocks of colours, Scott’s rocks are given different personalities; some will smile at you, some will challenge you with endearing looks.They will all make you love them. This is what Scott brings magically to the world: life on rocks.
JAN SINGLETON – LOVE FOR ALL LIVING THINGS
Jan is an amazingly skilled artist who has never failed to depict the most adorable animals on rocks! Her talent and passion for everything she creates is more than captivating. There are so many rocks to love in Jan’s collection: little dogs and cats, owls, hippos, seals, panda bears and so many others! Just have a look and smile.
CHRISTINE ONWARD - ROCKS OF "THE DIAMOND"As for me, I owe it all to Diamond Beach in Australia. I lived there for nearly three years and I am grateful for each day I went to the beach just to find the most amazing rocks in the most beautiful shapes in colours. These rocks have changed my life into what I am now: a passionate admirer and creator of art on rocks.
I hope you enjoyed my invitation to know some of the Australian rock artists I love. If you too live and create art on rocks in Australia, please let me know. I would love to continue the series with a new set of artist from our country. Thank you.
CREATING ART TO CALM THE SOUL - Interview with Rachel Mitchell, Exceptional Artist, Rock Painting Innovator, Teacher, and Beautiful Soul 26
GLIMPSE INTO AN EXCEPTIONALLY PRODUCTIVE AND INNOVATIVE CAREER:
Canadian artist Rachel Mitchell talking about new ways to create outstanding art on rocks
Dear Rachel, I need to say that I have been following your media accounts for quite a few years. I have since admired your ingenuity, your talent, and your energy to create the most astonishing works of art! How did it all start and where do you get your inspiration from?
Thank you so much to you and everyone for following my accounts! I can't believe I've been doing this for almost 7 years now, and for the last 4 years on a full time basis!
At first I just wanted to get all of my creativity out and share it with whoever was willing to see it.
Now my passion is to also show others what I have taught myself, tips and tricks; lessons I have learned and mistakes I have made, as well as to create unique rock jewels that everyone can love.
Colour is my eye candy. I'm inspired by so many wonderful artists and places I could only get the chance to see through the internet world. Pinterest has so many beautiful artists, ideas and creativity; It's one of my favourite places to get inspired.
Over the last years your innovative work had a major contribution to the world of rock art.Can you tell us more about your ideas and how they positively changed the way we do rock painting these days?
I am always looking for ways to make my artwork stand out.
As everyone might already know, I use a lot of metallic paints and glitters. At first I wasn't very happy with they way they shined, as I wanted my stones to be as bold, colourful, and sparkling as possible!
I saw what resin did to paintings on canvas and fell in love! I was a little scared to play with it at first. I made a few mistakes, but the result was exactly what I had been looking for. It was magical!!!
As for my DIY fine lining brush, it has helped so much!! I had spent so much money on brushes over the years! I would purchase every fine brush I could find and it never did what I needed. Lines were always too thick or too sloppy, and I felt that I would never learn the magical techniques of the big artists, their fine lines and details.
So I took scissors to my brushes!! As a child, I used to take scissors to my dolls' hair (and sometimes my own) and it had not turned out well! Now, however, my brushes have never been so awesome! I was no longer wasting my hard earned money on expensive brushes for my line work. This helped me so much - I had to share!
Here s a link to Rachel's tutorial on how to prepare your brushes for fine lining on rocks: https://youtu.be/URuCcQfG020 :
I use a variety of dotting tools, what I find work best are Nail dotting tools, with two different sizes on each one. They are perfect for most dots but you can find great things around your home for dotting as well. For instance knitting needles, toothpicks, sewing needles, the opposite end of your paint brushes have different sizes to play with as well!
The hits on your YouTube and Facebook tutorials are sky-rocketing these days. Tell us more about these tutorials. What are they about and who are they addressed to?
Just over a year ago I began sharing rock painting tutorials and it was terrifying!! I am still not very good at editing, still learning every single time I post something new. My favorite part of a tutorial is painting the stone. It could take a couple of hours to paint a stone and a full day (or longer!) to just to edit the video and have it ready to post on YouTube.
Sometimes I lose bits and pieces of my video that were really important so I end up having to redo the whole thing. Editing tends one of the most frustrating and time consuming parts of my career. However, when I think at the amount of people I'm helping, it makes it all worth it!
Each tutorial is edited with love and sometimes tears, but they are made for all those who want to create beautiful things.
Here are some of my favourite tutorials you might want to have a look at:
How to resin your stone: https://youtu.be/76K9Exf-v6Q
Sunflower on a Santorini stone: https://youtu.be/b2ES1l0-KtM
Zentangle paw painting on a stone: https://youtu.be/p8KjekWjAhI
Painting a dotted dragonfly: https://youtu.be/0iWQXZb6T9g
Some of the rocks you might want to learn to paint: Rachel's YouTube account Here
You are offering so much to the other fellow artists: beauty of art, inspiration, and enormously useful ideas. What do you expect in return?
We need to have more positivity and beauty in our lives. From kids to seniors, I want people to know that they have this creative vibe running through them!! You don't have to go to an art school to be an artist. Painting is extremely therapeutic, it calms our soul, and it gives us a healthy outlet.
To end here, I know it's a difficult one, I would like to ask you who are the artists you mostly admire and are thankful to?
This is so hard to answer because there are just so many people I admire and so many artists that deserve recognition. These are only a few of my favourites:
Bob Ross (of course),fellow Canadian artist Elspeth McLean,and Australian artist Ben Heine.
MY ART BEGINNINGS: Corrina Marie Canning talking about challenges of life and how she turned them into meaningful journeys 11
Today's article is dedicated to those who, like me, feel that life has given them a SECOND CHANCE. I found Corrina's story one early morning on Instagram. Until then I had it in my heart that I was the only one (or one of the very few) who were living A LIFE FOR RENT, and was trying to make the most of it in their own terms. To me, Corrina's words were beyond inspiring, they were revealing!
And if I am like her -on a journey- and I am not alone anymore, I am sure there will be more like us out there, just waiting for this awakening experience to happen to them too.
With these, I will let you absorb the story. I do expect you to treat it with all due respect, gratitude, and the compassion it deserves.
For all those who decided to take the time to read my story, let me introduce myself.I am Corrina Marie Canning, wild woman, Artrepreneur and Nature Enthusiast. Mother to Mitchell aged 25, grandmother to Matteo aged 3, and daughter to Dora, ageless.
I am also an artist, a tarot reader, a seeker of all things love, light, and colour. I LOVE to travel, whether it be to other countries, beaches, forests, and outside of my own mind. I am positively obsessed with sacred geometric patterns, energy, and colour.
I'll tell you something personal about my history, to give you all some insight into how I came to paint mandalas.
7 years ago I lost a baby about halfway through my pregnancy. We were on a family vacation in Cuba when it happened, hours away from the closest hospital. Thank goodness my mom was with me; I hemorrhaged badly and had an out-of-body experience on the way to the hospital.
I don’t know for how long. It seemed like lifetimes and seconds. The place I went was not a tunnel or a white light. It was like Aurora Borealis, rich in colour which I still can’t find a name for. The colours had sound, frequency, and they spoke to me and within me. I understood what felt like everything.
When I woke up in a hospital bed the next day, my body bruised and broken, but alive, I had an entirely new lease on life. And although I had always been an artist, that experience shifted the way I perceived, felt, heard and expressed it!
Within the next year I went to Bali, Indonesia with the intention to heal my body and emotions of the trauma. I had the privilege of a healing with a woman named Jero, who also saw what I had seen on the other side. She told me the colour consciousness had a message for me: that if I wanted to grow my life, I had to learn to LET GO.
She had a vision of me Painting Mandalas, holding a paintbrush. But I didn't know how to paint yet! Returning from that life changing trip I purchased my first paints, canvases and brushes. I trusted my intuition and allowed it to guide my hand.
A few months into this (oh such a fun journey!!), the first Mandala "channelled" through.
Whenever I tried to draw or paint one of my accords, nothing happened. It was disastrous. So I learned to surrender into a trance state, and this is where the magic flowed through.
Since then, I have been painting Mandalas on every kind of surface smooth enough to do it on.
I always think-breathe-flow Sacred Geometry everywhere and in everything. I see the whole world in a vast colour spectrum that endlessly fascinates and inspires me.
This photo was taken shortly after the Bali experience, as my body, emotions, and spirit were healing from the loss. I've learned that even the darkest of times bring the greatest of Treasures. What I am birthing into this world is whatever my guides, or spirit, or colour consciousness leads me to. I am an instrument. And every day I am so grateful for this gift to be able to express the world the way I see it.
I thank you all for reading my story, for following my art, and for sharing your comments with me,.
It means more than you could all know 💖.
With gratitude, Corrina xoxo
Celebrating One Year of Community and Love for Rocks - Interview with Parrish Jefferson, Collector and Ardent Supporter of Rock Art 12
Welcome to a new series of Rock Street publications presenting the life and achievements of our rock painters, their latest works of art, rock painting tutorials, and other news from the world of rocks!
Today I have the extraordinary occasion of interviewing the most significant collector of rock art of our days, amazingly supportive person, and activist of kindness in the world of art, Parrish Jefferson.
Exactly a year ago Parrish began her Instagram journey and started collecting painted rocks. Since then she has been encouraging hundreds of artists to continue their work, promoted rock art campaigns, and acquired art works from artists from all around the world! If you are one of those artists who had the chance to meet and talk with Parrish, you will agree that she never failed to show her endless passion for rock art.
Hope you enjoy the reading and her beautifully painted rocks.
Celebrating One Year of Community and Love for Rocks - Interview with Parrish Jefferson, Collector and Ardent Supporter of Rock Art
Who is Parrish Jefferson and how did this passion for art begin?
I'm just a gal from Texas, highly educated but have never been able to keep a stable career due to my husband's job which required frequent reassignments. It allowed me to see much of the world though. They also translated into helping me relate to artists from many places, in every corner of the globe!
A traveler's passion for art - glimpse into part of Parrish Jefferson's collection of rocks from all over the world!
At last estimation I have about 350 rocks! I collect all genres, colors, themes etc., from USA, Brazil, Australia, Canada, Latvia, Korea, Indonesia, every country in Europe. What's heartbreaking is that in some countries postal costs are so high, it isn't even feasible to do business with the artists who live there. It is frustrating for them and myself all the time, unfortunately.
Part of Parrish's rock collection in blue hues
Displaying so many rocks has become really challenging for me. I often display in vignettes featuring certain colors or by theme (such as my Southwestern Style collection or that with a Native American look). I've also collected special bowls from several artists to provide more beautiful displays for rocks. I even have some on wall sconces! It's almost time, however, to purchase some new wall shelves!
Parrish's stunning collection of rocks and the decorative plate in hues of turquoise
Has collecting painted rocks changed your life in any way?Collecting rocks and becoming part of the rock painting community on Instagram has changed my life in so many positive ways I'd never dreamed possible!
It began with a simple first purchase....from Valeria Campagna. Boy, did I set the bar high! I was so impressed, that I posted awful pictures (my fault!) and shared my excitement with the few followers I had. That began one of the most important relationships in my life. Valeria is a dear friend and actually, we will be working together soon on a new project involving Etsy, other artists, and it will include opportunities for new artists as well! That's all I can say at this point, but I'll be making announcements in May.
I also have in the works a world wide 'Rock Olympics' (rather an annual rock painting competition). N.A. More details about this event will be published in a few weeks on this website
With a touch of boho-chic and admirable colours
With the positive feedback received from posting such beautiful works, collecting rocks soon became a passionate hobby! I had to hone my staging and photography skills and learn what a hashtag was! I made an advice sheet for new artists who wanted to make a name and sell Art. Artists then began coming to me for advice, wanting to be featured on my page; this was an honor to me and a happy and productive use of my time. It's been a joy.
Over the last year you have shown tremendous support for rock artists from USA and from across the globe. You frequently tag new artists in your posts, share their achievements, encourage new releases and new campaigns. Why? Where is this desire and energy to help others coming from?
As I collect from established and well known artists as well as beginners, I tend to meet thousands of them, even tangentially! I fully believe that one's motives are what matters in this life of soul-growth. Therefore, helping artists, featuring their art to best highlight its beauty, to support and encourage, to introduce new talents...well, it's a way of paying it forward. Spreading beauty is always a treat! Further, promoting the business side of art is often distasteful to artists, so I help there as much as I can!
I also want people to know that artists have been VERY KIND to me! Not a week goes by without receiving gift rocks I didn't even realize had been sent! I'd estimate at least 30% of my rocks have been gifts. I consider that I'm overpaid in unexpected, generous gifts and say as much when people commend me for helping artists! And by the way, I never charge and never have, for any help. It just wouldn't feel comfortable for me.
Rock art mastered with magnificent skill and patience
I know this is going to be very difficult to respond to, but is there a specific rock in your collection that has a special significance for you or story attached to it that is worth talking about?
I do admit to having one favorite stone. Valeria painted the 'Parrish Rock' inspired by my energy (her words) and it is not only sentimentally the most meaningful rock, but also aesthetically one of the most beautiful rocks you'd ever hope to see! It has a sacred place in my home, with her framed words, and Christine, when I received it, it felt like I had won a Grammy or the Nobel Peace Prize!
Val Campagna, the "Parrish Rock" and framed are Val's words about inspiration and friendship across oceans
Over this last year since your Instagram launching, you have surrounded yourself with a huge number of rock artists of outstanding talent and success. Along the way, some of them have also become good friends. Could you mention some of your artist friends?
They will be so many! I will only mention SOME of my wonderful, talented, and amazing artist friends, I do hope you will jump to check on their accounts for their art works are absolutely divine: Valeria Campagna, Andrea Moebes, Yosy, Purvi Patel, Sandi O., Corrina Marie Canning, Oti's Art Studio, Summer Tan, Vallerie, and special regards to Viola, Karin Getaz and, the Empress, Liona Hotta
Last but not least, knowing so many artists and being involved so deeply in their creative world, what is the message you would like to send to them? Can art change things for the better?
The last words would be about the great therapeutic value of rock painting. Painting on rocks is something everyone should experience. It's calming, fun, creative whether one has innate skill or not.
Recently however consciousness has been raised regarding the ubiquitous problem of art theft. I've done several postings and had dozens of artists contact me in distraught over this issue. Artists, please tag those who inspire you, never take advantage from a peer's design, and finally, if it happens to you... TAKE ACTION! Let's keep this world of rock painting a beautiful thing!
Stunning art works and memorable colours from Parrish Jefferson's collection. Thank you for kindly enchanting us with such marvels and your kind words!
Parrish and I are welcoming your comments in the section below. Also you can make inquiries or add info on email@example.com.
If interested to buy, the rocks for SALE are here.