Be open to happiness (free art print)

I am of two minds when it comes to the pursuit of happiness.  I like the idea of being intentional and having goals when it comes to working toward your own happiness.  Like The Happiness Project, for example.  But, then I feel like a big part of being happy is just resting in the moment.  And, for me at least, reading something like the happiness project gets me all keyed up.  I start forming check lists galore.  I need to do this or that to be happier.  I feel like trying to be happy almost makes me more unhappy at times.  I've been thinking a lot about trying to be a more open and positive person (this has a lot to do with yoga).  I tend to me a bit negative and cynical at times.  I really just want to be open to being content and happy where I am.  Openness has been on my mind because it is the monthly theme for the sketchbook challenge.  I stumbled across the site a while back and decided to play along.  I've been working to sketch more and I thought this project would help push me in that direction.  Also, they have all kinds of interesting post and tips from various artists.  Wonderful resource.   All my reflecting lead to this little painting (which you can download for free below).

be happy

I made it using liquid frisket (the yellow painting is still one of my favorite projects).


Honestly, I didn't even know what a frisket was until I saw in on a sketchbook project post.  Told you that site was great. I was all like, hold the phone that stuff is awesome.  I started googling like a wild woman.  My knowledge of art doesn't really extend much beyond high school art class. Then, almost like magic, Jason came home that day with a surprise for me.  He got me a hobby lobby gift card, just as a way of being sweet because I've been so warn out by our little monsters here lately.  I do love new art supplies. Anyways, this stuff is crazy fun to play around with.  I wish I had taken photos of the process.  No worries, I am sure I will being using it again really soon!

Once this was finished, I slapped it in a frame and hung in on my wall.


I liked it to much to leave it in a sketchbook.  Besides, it is a good reminder to have around the house.  It is part of my gallery wall I am working on. That little yellow chair used be be really ugly.  Can you find the match box car and the mustache Henry snuck in the photo?  He likes to help me with decorations.  I know, sticking cute.


I love the wall over at Young House Love, but instead of spending all the time and cash upfront I am slowing adding to it.  Peice by piece as I find things I love and then just hanging them on the wall all willy nilly.   I know, this would make some people crazy (my husband is one of them). Actually, those little white mirrors just got painted.  They had been hanging on the wall looking like this (oh and there might have been goodwill price stickers on them too).


I think there were on my wall three months like this.  Yikes.  Slow and steady wins the race I guess.  I got them for a buck a piece and luckily the mirrors popped right out making them very easy to paint.  And behind the mirrors were little pieces of floral paper which I am hopping to put into an art project one day.


Here is a shot of the whole wall.  Maybe you can see where I am going (and I have a long way to go).  The picture is complete with a blur of a toddler running through and clutter on my mantel.  And no, the toy on top of the xbox stand isn't staying.  More help from Henry.  Gosh, I just want to squeeze him.  Speaking of the XBox.  We aren't really 'gamers'. (  We use it to watch TV.  We don't have cable but we do have Hulu and Netflix through XBox live.  Just thought I'd toss that out there.  We don't set at home with wireless headsets shooting people and listening to 13 year old kids swear.  Okay, Jason does from time to time.  But, it is pretty rare. Back to the wall).  I need to find a different clock.  I just haven't found one that strikes my fancy yet.  The other two paintings on the wall are ones I did a while back (here and here).  I decided I might as well start hanging up some of the crap I've made.


While I was working on the painting, I thought a lot about the things that make me happy.  And, this space makes me happy.  You make me happy.  It means so much that you are here.  I thought it would be fun to make this image available to you as a free digital download.   I know it isn't much, but just a little way of saying thanks.  You can print it, frame it, save it to your desktop or even cut it up to use in an art project of your own.  Do with it whatever makes you happy.   Please feel free to share.  Thanks for reading.


  1. This may be a little late - 'n in the wrong place! I read what you said about Santa, and how wrong it feels telling the kids lies - I did, too. When my eldest was five, he blithely 'wrote off' the collection being taken for children in war-torn countries, because "Santa will go and help them!"
    So - I bit the bullet, and told them that it was Mum and Dad that bought the presents - explaining that it was like the Tooth Fairy, we all like a good story, have a carnival - sort of. He was happy with that, thought it was a good thing - I have five other kids, and they were all taught the same - that is was all in fun, and part of the fun was the story and dressing up.
    Just found your blog today, and started to follow - I am an old granny in Australia - greetings to you and yours! cheers -

    1. Thanks for stopping by! That is so funny about your son dismissing a collection because he thought Santa would help him. I like the blend of playing along but allowing the child to understand it is make believe. I'm so glad you are following along. I love having friends from the other side of the world :)


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