Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Illustration Friday ~ Clandestine

Maggie was the operative in countless CLANDESTINE affairs.

As she seemed to shout the word clandestine, I have reached into the archives for this week's entry for Illustration Friday.

© Nancy Lefko

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Lovely Blog Award from a Lovely Blogger

I've had the pleasure, over the past few months, of getting to know the very talented Stacey Merrill of Artsnark's Artifacts. Recently, Stacey bestowed upon me this sweet blog award. Stacey and I met through an Etsy forum and we enjoy chatting and sharing ideas, inspiration and encouragement quite often. Do yourself a favor and take the time to visit Stacey's blog and the wonderful art in her Etsy shop.

In return, I will pass along this award to seven lovely blogs. It is never easy to choose seven from the vast number of blogs that set my heart a-flutter, but I shall obey the rules of the game :)

It would be time well spent to visit the lovely blogs of these fine artists:

Fannie Narte
Lisa Rivas
Pam Carriker
Kim Geiser
Aimee Dolich
Elizabeth Parsons
Kelly Jackson Brownlee

Saturday, December 27, 2008

New Work

It was a long time coming, but I finally made it to my delightful new studio space to create some collage work. From Thanksgiving until now my time had been taken up by so many things that art had been put on the back burner. It felt great to light that fire again!

The collage shown is available in my Etsy shop. **SOLD**

© Nancy Lefko

Friday, December 26, 2008

Christmas at Home

Better late than never, here is a glimpse at the decorations that grace the Lefko home this Christmas season. The tree pictured above is in our front living room and is decorated entirely in vintage Shiny Brite ornaments, many of which graced the Christmas trees of my childhood.

The Dickens village and the tree pictured below brighten our family room and greeted Santa Claus upon his arrival.

My retro pink tinsel tree in our foyer gives the Christmas decor a funky twist.

I hope your Christmas was filled with love and laughter and I wish you all the best in the New Year!

Monday, December 22, 2008

Christmas Joy

With only a few days left to prepare for Christmas, I will shift into overdrive and start my cookie baking. (Eight days without power sort of put a crimp in my baking, but now is as good a time to start as any.)

The wrapping is done, more or less, and I have but a few small things to pick up at stores tomorrow. Another storm is forecast for Christmas Eve, so I plan to stay home then and enjoy my favorite day of the Christmas season...for me, it even tops the big day. Something my kids just don't understand :)

With my last post before Christmas, I would like to wish you all a blessed day surrounded by those you love. The power outage kept me from visiting your blogs as regularly as I would have liked these past ten days or so, but I always appreciate that you are stopping by to visit with me here.

Merry Christmas my friends!!

© Nancy Lefko

Friday, December 19, 2008

Christmas Wish

In addition to Santa Claus and Fairy Godmothers, you can add Power Company Linemen to the list of those who make wishes come true.

After a devastating ice storm hit New Hampshire last Thursday night, power company workers from all across the country came to help restore power to those 424,000 homes affected by the outages.

At our house we spent eight long days hooked up to generator power and, although better off than many, it was a very trying time. When the power truck made its way to our street today there was great rejoicing!

Shortly after our power was restored, Mother Nature thought a snowstorm was in order. As I write this a gentle snow continues to fall. When all is said and done, ten inches of new snow will blanket the ground. I think of those workers who continue to labor over the fallen lines, many of whom will be far from home on Christmas Day and still working for our benefit. I think of those who are still without power in their homes and may not have that restored until after the new year. New Hampshire and parts of Massachusetts have never seen such devastation. If you can say a quiet prayer for those still in need, it will be greatly appreciated.

May all of YOUR Christmas wishes come true.

© Nancy Lefko

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

The Spirit of Christmas

The spirit of Christmas is defined in many ways. For some folks Christmas is defined by bustling shoppers and brightly colored lights. For others it is the quiet of a candlelit church service or the closeness of those we love. The youngest among us are sure to define this blessed holiday by the generosity of Jolly Old St. Nick.

No matter your definition, the message of the Christmas season shines through as one of giving. This is so wonderfully expressed at the blog of my dear friend Fannie Narte who is hosting the most generous of giveaways. She and her friends "The Frostees" have shopped in many Etsy shops, mine included. The handcrafted items found there are all included in the generous giveaway.

Fannie is one of the dearest souls I have had the pleasure to get to know through this wonderful online art world. She has a heart the size of her state of Texas and of solid gold indeed. You would be remiss if you failed to stop by Fannie's blog ...for this giveaway, yes, but indeed for a whole lot more. Every day is a treat at Fannie's and you will never be disappointed.

© Nancy Lefko

Friday, December 5, 2008

Illustration Friday ~ Similar

Buddy and Jeannette were indeed quite SIMILAR to Nick and Nora Charles.

© Nancy Lefko

Sunday, November 30, 2008

New Studio Space

After three years of creating art below ground level (AKA...in the basement) I have moved on up to the second floor. I have traded my art sink for natural light and more pleasant surroundings. All in all, a fairly good trade. The image below shows my humble beginnings.

And here is my new studio with a view of a beautiful New Hampshire mountain. Life is good!

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Illustration Friday ~ Opinion

My entry for Illustration Friday's prompt OPINION, finds Lulu and Sadie admitting to their deep, dark secret.

© Nancy Lefko

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Illustration Friday ~ Pretend

Some of my happiest moments have been spent as witness to the imaginations of my children. As each boy lived through adventures and escapades as a youngster, it was with great joy that I shared in their magical world of PRETEND. My youngest is often fully immersed in his land of make believe and I am almost envious of the stories he can bring to life in his own imagination. Oh, that we could preserve that for a lifetime.

My collage for the Illustration Friday prompt, PRETEND, pays homage to the magic of childhood, imagination and creativity. May it live on in all of us, no matter our age.

This collage is currently available in my Etsy shop.

© Nancy Lefko

Inspire Me Thursday ~ Coffee Break

Coffee...my favorite beverage! I could not miss the opportunity to submit one of my "Java Junkies" for Inspire Me Thursday's prompt, COFFEE BREAK. I would have had this posted earlier today, but I was having a two hour coffee break with my gal pal.

This collage is available in my Etsy shop.

© Nancy Lefko

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Arty Girlz Challenge ~ Blog Inspiration

An interesting challenge this week at Arty Girlz was to use inspiration from a blog to create a piece of art. I turned to Sweet Repeats, the blog of my good friend Jodi Ohl. Every time I visit Jodi's blog I am struck by the joyous color. The bright blues, greens and yellows call out to me and I have answered with the above collage, entitled "Winter Magic."

You would be well served to visit Jodi's blog where there is always a host of beautiful art to enjoy.

The above 6 x 6 collage is available in my Etsy shop.

© Nancy Lefko

Monday Artday ~ Speed

My entry for Monday Artday's topic, SPEED, is the above ACEO that depicts the kind of speed our youngsters enjoy! My hope is that as they make the switch from sleds to vehicles, they relinquish the passion for speed :) Celebrating my #1 son's 17th birthday this week, I probably should have illustrated the incredible SPEED at which he has grown. Where do the years go?

This ACEO is available in my Esty shop.

© Nancy Lefko

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Etsy Update

With some time in my studio today, I was able to finish five new collages, three of which have a Christmas theme. I don't like to rush the season, but I know Thanksgiving will be upon us in no time.

The collage pictured, and the others, are available in my Etsy shop.

© Nancy Lefko

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Mind-Wide Open Challenge ~ Beloved

My entry for this month's challenge at Mind Wide Open is the collage entitled, "Seek, Find, Love." Voting commences on November 8th, so if you aren't too worn out from today's trip to the polls, you can stop by and cast your vote. There will surely be oodles of inspiration and wonderful works to admire.

This collage is available in my Etsy shop. **SOLD**

© Nancy Lefko

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Something Different

During one of my shopping trips to Michaels I discovered a small papier mache box and thought it might be a fun surface on which to collage. I was right! I thoroughly enjoyed the challenge of working with a three dimensional item. I envisioned making a sweet box for sewing notions or secret treasures, something useful as well as decorative.

This box is currently available in my Etsy shop. *SOLD*

© Nancy Lefko

Friday, October 31, 2008

Illustration Friday ~ Vacant

For Halloween, it seemed only fitting that my submission for Illustration Friday represent the most frightening of VACANT houses...one where ghosts may dwell.

If by chance you'd like to get a jump on your Halloween shopping for next year, this collage and other Halloween pieces are available in my Etsy shop with free shipping in the US.

Happy Halloween !!!!

© Nancy Lefko

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Over the Moon

I am so thrilled to present my first published work in the November/December issue of Cloth, Paper, Scissors Magazine. The collage, entitled "Tea for Two," was an answer to the "Tea Party Reader's Challenge." I am very grateful to the magazine for choosing my piece and yes...I'm doin' the happy dance. My thanks to all those who encouraged me to submit my work to publications.

© Nancy Lefko

Friday, October 24, 2008

Illustration Friday ~ Repair

"No matter what needed a REPAIR, Mother did so with a happy heart."

This ACEO collage for Illustration Friday is available in my Etsy shop. **SOLD**

© Nancy Lefko

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

WIP ~ Cityscape

This collage entitled, "The Sky's the Limit," was created on gallery wrap canvas. My first time using this type of canvas, I found it a very pleasant substrate on which to work. My first step, after painting the wonderfully staple-free sides, was to layer on background papers which had been distressed and inked. A coating of gel medium was then applied and allowed to dry.

Paint was applied with a brayer and removed as needed with a damp paper towel.

The skyline was added and embellished and the text completes the collage.

This collage is an homage to that wonderful town...New York City..."so nice, they named it twice." There is a wealth of opportunity there and the title of the collage not only applies to the skyscrapers, but to what one can achieve in "a land of opportunity." Many of you know that I am a Native New Yorker, although have not lived there for over twenty years. However, I will always be a "New Yorker" and tributes to my roots make frequent appearances in my art.

This collage is available in my Etsy shop.

© Nancy Lefko

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Illustration Friday ~ Late

Rita was known for staying out LATE. She was often the very last one at the Trocadero.

This collage for Illustration Friday is available in my Etsy shop.

© Nancy Lefko

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Arty Girlz Challenge ~ Numbers

In answer to the Arty Girlz Weekly Challenge ~ Numbers, I created this collage entitled, "Three Friends."

This collage is available in my Etsy shop.

© Nancy Lefko

New Collage

My most recent work, entitled, "An Odd Variety," was created on 140 lb. watercolor paper. This collage, which measures 5 x 7, is suitable for framing. I have decided to create some collages on this substrate for those who would like to mat and frame a piece to their liking.

The text reads, "I fancy kindhearted artists of an odd variety."

This collage is available in my Etsy shop.

© Nancy Lefko

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Halloween Sale at Etsy

Hey there guys and ghouls!

There is a sale going on at my Esty shop. All Halloween collages are shipped for FREE in the US! Wouldn't you just love to tuck one in your treat bag?

© Nancy Lefko

Monday, October 13, 2008

Family Time

We had a four day weekend here in New Hampshire, with the boys home from school on Friday and today. I was able to grab a bit of studio time over the weekend and with inspiration from my home and family, created the two collages pictured.

Both collages are available in my Etsy shop.

© Nancy Lefko

Friday, October 10, 2008

A Partner in the Studio

While working on the above ACEO in my studio today, I was joined by my youngest son, Brian. Very often he will play alongside me while I create, but the image of the bee I was making piqued his interest and he wanted to join me at my art desk. He began with an image I had discarded, which he colored and used as a start for the illustration below entitled, 'In the Garden.' He added a monarch caterpillar, yellow jacket and fly.

On an artistic roll, Brian proceeded to create an illustration he has entitled, 'Home Sweet Log.' Featured insects include orange back termites, millipede, maggots and a pill bug.

It was a joy to have my young son join me on today's creative journey. These are magic moments.

My ACEO is available in my Etsy shop, however, Brian has informed me that his illustrations are not for sale.


© Nancy and Brian Lefko

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Thanks, Ladies!

Belated thanks to a pair of wonderful artists who have bestowed upon me these awards. It just never gets old...finding out that someone out there, and a talented artist no less, really enjoys my artwork and visiting my blog! Nope, it never gets old.

With sincere thanks to Lisa and Bella, I, in turn, pass along these awards to the following special people:


Ladies, feel free to pass along these awards, filled with the affection with which they've been sent!

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Mind Wide Open Challenge ~ All Dressed Up

The October challenge at Mind Wide Open features the image of sweet little girls and the prompt 'all dressed up.'

My interpretation is the above collage which I have entitled, 'dream.' The little girls are dreaming about being fancy ladies all dressed up.

Please visit the Mind Wide Open site after October 7th and see the wonderful work that is posted there. If you feel so inspired, you can even vote for my collage while you're there.

This collage is available at my Etsy shop.

© Nancy Lefko

Monday, September 29, 2008

Custom Collages

"Custom Artwork Available"...it says so on my business card. However, I have only been approached a handful of times to create a custom piece. I wonder sometimes if customers think that the only images I can use are those of vintage folks that so often grace my collages. In reality, I can use almost any image.

The collage featured here was created using a photo of mine from 1974. Here we are...my BFF and me back in our glory days :) I scanned the photograph, changed the coloring in Photoshop and voila'...a collage steeped in memories. I also took special care to include elements in the background that had relevance, such as the song lyric "tho we're apart" (as we are these days) and also the reference to New York, where we grew up together.

She really enjoyed receiving this gift and I imagine others would feel the same upon receiving such a collage. So if you are looking for a unique holiday gift this season, click "custom artwork" in my sidebar and we'll take it from there.

BTW...I'm the one on the right with the tinsel teeth...and we always wore our overalls to school on the same day :D


© Nancy Lefko

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Illustration Friday ~ Packed

Ruthie's journey awaits...she's all PACKED and ready to go.

This ACEO collage is my submission for Illustration Friday and is available in my Etsy shop.

© Nancy Lefko

Friday, September 26, 2008

Arty Girlz Challenge ~ Autumn

Better late than never, this collage is my submission for the Arty Girlz theme AUTUMN. This idea came to me as soon as I saw the prompt, but a hectic week kept me out of my studio until tonight.

The maple leaf used was one from our yard that I scanned and then colored in Photoshop.

This ACEO is available in my Etsy shop.

© Nancy Lefko

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Thanks, Beth and Deborah

My thanks to Beth Macre and Deborah for choosing my collages to be a part of their treasuries.

Finding your work in a treasury as you're surfing through Etsy just never gets old :)

Thanks, Beth and Deborah!

Monday, September 22, 2008

With Sincere Thanks

I am very late in saying thank you for being chosen for two Etsy treasuries last week. It is too late to visit these and see the other artists featured, but hopefully not too late to express my gratitude.

So, thank you Lisa and Jo for choosing my art to share space with that of other talented folks :)

I have spent a good deal of time this morning visiting those amazing artists listed in my blog roll. So often I get too busy to visit and I don't want any of you to forget how much joy you bring to my day when I stop by your blog.

The Etsy treasury pictured above is one of my own creation. It is still live for a bit longer, so please visit and enjoy the work of mixed media friends :)

Friday, September 19, 2008

Illustration Friday ~ Clique

Mimi, Rose and Trixie, aka the "Party Girls" were considered by some to be a CLIQUE. But, in reality, they were more than willing to let others join the party.

My submission for Illustration Friday is now available in my Etsy shop.

© Nancy Lefko

Inspire Me Thursday ~ Storyteller

As I mention on my website, I enjoy telling stories through my collages. That is why my entry for the Inspire Me Thursday prompt, STORYTELLER, is a collage featuring an artist. There are stories all around us and I hope to celebrate those stories through art.

This collage entitled, "The Artful Life," is available in my Etsy shop.

© Nancy Lefko

Thursday, September 18, 2008


This collage began life as a discarded book. The cover received a generous sampling of papers, paints and inks and soon a fun background was born. Today it received its finishing touches, and is now available in my Etsy shop. *SOLD*

While working on this collage, I was thinking of a friend I have known for over 35 years. She was there then and she is here now...a true link to my past and bridge to my future.

Chris, this one's for you :)

© Nancy Lefko