Current Shows

Due to the Corona virus, the Surface Design workshop has been postponed until this summer. The new date for it will be announced when the Art House re-opens.


I'll be teaching this one-day workshop on March 14, 2020 at the Art House! Learn to design your own unique papers and other materials for collage, card making, scrap booking, journal making etc. I supply all the materials. All you need to bring is a sack lunch and a beverage. Hours are 10-4; fee is $90 per person. Register online at or call 678-543-5777. Act now! Seating is limited!

Saturday, May 23, 2015

The "Before" Photo I Didn't Show You

The largest "canvas" I've ever worked on is our house. I'm guessing a lot of artists view their homes the same way I do -- as ongoing works in progress. Hubs and I are longtime DIYers who've invested countless years and effort working to improve this place we call home. There will always be something yet to be tackled on our to-do list, because every project seems to generate another project. And sometimes it requires calling in outside help.

Anyway, a few days ago I posted a series of photos showing the remarkable difference it made in our home's appearance when we called in a professional landscape designer.

The "before" photo I posted had been taken in 2013. By that time we had already made significant improvements to the house. When a friend saw the pictures on the blog she asked me why I hadn't used the very first photo taken of the house when we bought it years ago. I mumbled something about trying to keep America beautiful, and not wanting to foster stereotypes of Appalachia, but I had to admit she was right. I hadn't wanted to use that photo because the house looked unbelievably awful back then. "But you've done so much to it since then" she argued. "You really ought to show your readers what you started with."

So in the interest of full disclosure, here's what Hacienda Edwards looked like when we were young, stupid, and under the illusion that a couple weekends' worth of elbow grease was all that was needed to fix the place up:

The original "before" photo, taken just after we bought the house

As it looks today
I've been working on this "canvas" now for better than half my life. It will never be completely done, and I'm not sure I want it to be. Just as it is when working on a painting, it's the envisioning, the planning, the decision-making, the problem solving, and giving life to a mental image that's so gratifying. As the saying goes, "It's the process, not the product."

Thanks to my friend's suggestion, I'm stunned by the contrasts in these two photos. It's the first time I've actually placed them next to each other. It's pretty amazing what "a few weekends worth" of elbow grease can do! Have our efforts been worth it? Yes, I think so. Just one piece of advice for first time buyers looking for a DIY fixer-upper: estimate your timeframe for getting the work done, and multiply by 30. That's 30 years, not days. After all, it'll take some time to get the place just the way you want it. :)

Images and text ©2015 Lynn Edwards

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