Welcome to Ravens Bend Folk Art. My name is Sharon Wittke and I live in the beautiful Shawnee Hills of southernmost Illinois where my studio window overlooks a peaceful pasture filled with grazing longhorn cattle.
I begin each day with a paintbrush in my hand. I’m a self-taught decorative artist, and my painting style is a blend of naïve, narrative and folk art with a touch of whimsy thrown in for good measure.
Using acrylics, I paint my original designs on a variety of surfaces. Wooden bowls and plates, chairs, three legged stools, cheese boxes, and antique kitchen utensils are among my favorite items to decorate. I scour local antique and resale shops for odd or interesting items to paint. My favorite subjects are Halloween, Christmas, other holidays, and scenes of rural life.
For inspiration, I recall the resplendent autumn days and blustery winter nights of my childhood home in upstate New York. Dancing witches, cavorting skeletons and grinning ghosts were among the many trick-or-treaters who roamed the streets of my village on All Hallow’s Eve. As a youngster, I heard colorful tales about tiny elves and grumpy belsnickles who lived in the snowy woodlands surrounding my town.
I’ve been strongly influenced by legendary American folk artists such as Edward Hicks, Rufus Porter, and Grandma Moses, as well as 20th century decorative artists including Peter Ompir, Jo Sonja Jansen, and Peter Hunt.
I began painting in 2001, following the September 11 attack. At the time, I was an Air Force operations officer at Scott Air Force Base in Belleville, Illinois. I discovered painting helped me overcome the same sadness and stress my fellow Americans were experiencing at that time. I’ve had no formal art training, and my first attempts at creating folk art were woefully lacking.
Humor is a key element in most of my designs, and my greatest reward is seeing a smile when someone views one of my folk art pieces. If you see a design that makes you smile, please contact me to create a folk art piece for you. See more in Sharon’s Etsy shop.
Sharon has a wide variety of beautiful handmade lampshades, folk art wooden bowls , plates and so much more. She has something for every holiday and season. Be sure to go by Ravens Bend Folk Art and see all the handmade spring and Easter folk art.
Happy Morning friends ! Today I am going to be blogging for some members of our Etsy team Rainbow Artists. We have a small team of handmade artists , vintage shops and suppliers . We have a wonderful variety of different gift ideas and diy project supplies on our team. To help with shopping with us you can go to our team page SHOPPERS GUIDE where all of our shops are shown in different categories for your convenience.
Chris makes a beautiful variety of natural dream catchers , earrings , bracelets and necklaces.
“God’s beautiful creation inspires me, I love all things Natural. Proud of my Lenape (Delaware) & German heritage. Loved drawing when I was growing up, made Native jewelry for myself when I was younger, then life happened….I met the most loving, supportive man who became my husband, we were blessed with 3 wonderful children that I school at home. My love for creating was rekindled after I came across some beautiful stone beads and branches, didn’t come across them at the same time but ideas were brewing…I love getting out in nature to explore and collect materials. Always liked dream catchers…knew that one day I would make them. I find joy in weaving a web, it’s very calming.”
Chris is a wonderful person and a good friend. I am so happy that our paths crossed. She is one of our team leaders and we are Grateful for all she does. Thanks so much Chris!
On Rainbow artists Etsy team we have been sharing our spring colors. Spring is right around the corner and it’s in the air here in Arizona.
I am going to finish the blog post off with some members of our team who have some beautiful spring colors to show you.
Follow the link above to our team page shoppers guide list for featured art. Where you will find links to all these fine shops and more.
We are always adding to these pages so stay tuned for fun art coming up.
Flutterbye bead supply is one of my favorite bead suppliers. Janice has a lot of different kinds of beads and supplies to choose from in her awesome bead shop. You will also find good prices , good service and fast shipping.
From Janice :
“Flutterbyebeadsupply offers a unique, affordable selection of beads and jewelry-making supplies that won’t break your bead bank!
I’m an avid bead artist and started buying supplies in bulk to help keep my costs down. I know how important it is to have a nice variety of beads and supplies to work with, while also trying to stick to a budget. My goal with this new shop is to offer these beauties to fellow bead enthusiasts, while passing along the savings as well!
As the shop name implies, all inventory may come and go just as quickly as a fluttering butterfly on a hot summer day! So, please don’t hesitate to make your purchase now, items are not guaranteed to be restocked. ”
Sea shells tell a story ~ each beautiful, each perfectly intricate. If you press a seashell against your ear and listen carefully, she whispers the secrets of her life journey.
I am mesmerized by the way Gerry from Eagle414 expresses stories in the sea shells she collects. You can see how much she loves these sea shells in each unique piece that is created. Here are a couple examples of her art, just click on the pictures for more information:
A special shout out to some of our Rainbow Artists Team members who have some awesome handmade items to show you for Valentines Day. Handmade gifts that have been made with love and are ready for you.
For those of you who love to make your own gifts and have those diy projects you have been waiting to try you should check out our teams suppliers. They have great prices and so many fun beads and so much more.
Click on the picture and go to our team page and you will find these special gifts and so much more
To see more of Rainbow Artists Team members stores click on the pictures or the link you see and you will be taken to our TEAM PAGES where we have many wonderful shopping ideas just for you.
Jenifer is a very talented artist and a very busy woman. She makes very beautiful glass art. Today I would like to show you a couple of my favorite pieces.
But before we get to that here is something from Jen.
CREATE – MelT – and be TIMELESS
Greetings and salutations from Ocean Beach Glass in the Golden State., From the Bay to the Coastal mountains of Northern California. I follow sunsets and daydreams, my world is what I make and my passion for this fire work is more than deep, but a need in my heart to be part of. I often have sand in my shoes and you’ll find I’m truly the most happy when I’m working and being a family at the same time; to be with each hand in hand. Music and the Earth and Skies Inspire me. Though I have worked with many art forms and crafts all my life, Glass is my medium of choice as it allows me to flow freely like the movement of the liquid of the earth that connects us all. A little science and a little art, allowing my mind to grow with every time I see the light of the torch. I’ve always been a serious knowledge seeker, and visionary artist.. and glass.. well glass, it’s like honey, and can drip like water. In melting, allows you to transform it into whatever my heart desires.
I’m grateful for the support of the people who truly collect my glass marbles and stirs. Thank you Thank you Thank you. Especially my return customers who loyally come back to me time and time again.
My Ocean Beach Glass Listings and Etsy store have been pictured in the 2015 Better Homes and Gardens May 2015 magazine issue and you can find me published in the winter 2014 issue of the Flow Magazine., a glass magazine for the flame working community and Featured in the Women in Glass issue and the 2015 Marbles and Paperweights Issue of the Flow Magazine.
I love the beautiful green color of these drink stirs. They are made of borosilicate -Pyrex Glass. Each one of these is handmade. What a beautiful way to serve your guests at a party.
I love the swirling colors in the tops of these glass drink stirs. Stunning work!
Good morning! It’s a beautiful day here in Arizona. It’s very sunny and it’s hopefully gonna get warmer. Christmas is right around the corner and today I am going to introduce you to some fun and creative handmade artists from our Etsy Team Rainbow Artists. We have so many really cool artists and we have an amazing Team Shoppers Guide for you to check out too.
Today I am going to start with Michelle from Atman Art Studio . Michelle is a very unique artist that does ink drawings. She has helped our team so much by doing blog interviews on this blog and promoting off Etsy. Thanks so much Michelle!
From Michelle :
I create art in my home studio in the beautiful Blue mountains, Australia. My drawing process is labor intense and meditative. Colour is an essential component of my artwork. A trip to India in 2013 inspired me to ramp up my use of colour even more!
I started this shop as a way to make a few dollars to be able to repair vehicles when they broke down, go to the grocery store, the usual stuff in these times. Just to make life a little easier. Creator seems to give us what we need, not always what we want but that is cool:)!! From what I am reading from quite a few with shops they are debating giving it up!! I have thought about it, slow time of year for sure. Some months it doesn’t quite pay the fees but,,, the more you put on here the better the chances are you may make a little something and it’s all worth while;) Read more here.
I love bears and all that they can teach us. Here is something I found in Bills shop that I love. What a great gift for the people around you that love bears and bear medicine.
This shop is mostly about sea shells. Sea shell clocks, candle rings, different plagues, wreaths, beautiful lights, jewelry boxes, picture frames, wind chimes, & wall accents or ornaments. Many sea shells I use are for sale to craft with or collect your favorite ones.
I design & hand make my OOAK sea shell creations with natural sea shells. I also use wood, electric lights w/cords, mono-filament, crystals/beads, clock parts, driftwood, glues, glosses, & cool battery-operated candles & flick a lights to enhance my creations so they can be used safely as I created them to be used … any & everywhere you want to put them!
A very beautiful seashell keepsake. What a beautiful wall hanging for your home or a Christmas ornament for your tree.
I have been exhibiting and selling my work at arts and crafts festivals in the Boston area since 2011. I love the personal interaction with shoppers, answering their questions, sharing my process, and (hopefully) helping them choose a gift or a piece for themselves.
I opened my Etsy shop in 2014 with my mother Sheryl so that we would be able to connect with buyers in a larger geographical area that are looking for high-quality handmade goods.
My process: I throw each pot on the wheel using high-quality porcelain clay. When the clay is partially dry, I trim the bottom, making a rounded “foot ring”, sign each piece with my maker’s mark, and alter the piece as needed. The pots are then bisque fired in my electric kiln.
After the first firing I hand paint the patterning using under glazes. The pattern is set into the piece by a second firing.
I lightly sand down the brush strokes that were left by the under glazing before I apply the glazes. My glazes are mixed from scratch using non-leaded ingredients. The final firing reaches 2,232°F, ensuring that the pot is less than 1% porous, and therefore safe for use with liquids/food and can be used in microwaves and dishwashers.
I take extreme care in sanding and polishing the bottom of each piece, so that it is smooth and comfortable to the touch and will not scratch any table surfaces.
This is so beautiful. I love these colors of purple. This would make a really great gift .
My name is Cristina and I live in Bucharest. It started as a hobby and became a passion for crocheted amigurumi toys. Combining business with pleasure, I relax by crocheting and perform handmade cute amigurumi toys with patience and ingenuity.
You will find here handmade crocheted amigurumi toys. Are unique designs, creations and designs on request.
My favorite materials are: cotton and acrylic in a rich color palette.
For more details on handmade accessories and how they purchase, please visit the “Contact” section of this online store.
Isn’t this the most adorable handmade toy you have ever seen? Look at her ears! She could make any child so happy. I’m calling her a girl because look at that little pink bow. What a happy , joyful toy!
I want to say thank you to all the members of our team who have participated in this Holiday blog promotion.
A big shout out to all our bloggers , you have been so great about blogging and promoting. To all our members who took the time to stop in and show your love and support thanks so much! Thanks to all of you who took the time to promote us on social media. We love you all! To all our great customers thank’s for supporting small business owners and handmade artists. You are why we do what we do. Blessings to all of you!
This is our team’s main blog so I will be continuing to promote here so please stay tuned as we go forward.
In the meantime if you are looking for a great gift for a friend or loved one for any occasion or season check out our team shoppers guide.