August 27, 2012
The Latest Buzz
No it’s not you. It. has. been. awhile. While there definitely was time off from here, I was definitely not away on some exotic vacation for the past 6 months (although I did squeeze in some time away here and there.) Mostly I’ve been working more than ever. From graphic design to pursuing art licensing (FINALLY cards, flags and other items will start coming out next year!), I’ve been busy as a bee. Which segways nicely into the above piece. I created this especially for Cloth Paper Scissors, “Artists Give Back.”
Many contributors (including myself) to Cloth Paper Scissors and Cloth Paper Scissors Studios magazines have created works for the special etsy store “Artists Give Back.” The art is available in a large size (approximately 8″ x 8″) for $100 or a smaller size (approximately 5″ x 5″) for $50. All proceeds will go to benefit the National Breast Cancer Foundation, Inc. (NBCF). The shop goes live on August 28th. I can pretty much guarantee these original works will go fast. Bee sure to check it out.
March 8, 2012
After a weekend getaway to Art-n-Soul in Virigina Beach (post coming soon…hopefully), I’m busy catching up.
For now, I thought I’d drop by to mention I have several pieces in the show above (my work is not pictured on the *gorgeous* flyer.) Unfortunately, I neglected to take photos of my entries so you’ll just have to come in person to see! Last Friday in a bit of a last minute frenzy, my art was wired for hanging and dropped off at the gallery on the way to the airport. Photos didn’t come to mind until I was flying above the clouds.
Evoke III is a group show centered around the theme: to create anew especially by means of the imagination. Opening night is this Friday from 6-9pm at Red Tree Gallery. Stop by for art and wine + live music if you’re in the area.
October 31, 2011
Stopping by quickly to wish a happy October 31st. I’m prepping Frankenstein Rice Krispie treats for school, doing an anti-rain dance and getting things ready for the big evening.
I created the above “Magical Metal Altar” in named class led by instructor Judy Coates Perez at the August 2011 CREATE retreat in Chicago. August was just close enough to October (in my world at least) to inspire several halloweenish art pieces.
Okay I’ve got to fly…have a spooky night!
October 27, 2011
Getting Into this Book
I was thrilled when this arrived in the mail. Even more exciting than the book’s actual arrival was being included! My article “The Mixed Adventures of a Superhero Series” can be found in Chapter 4: Collage and Assemblage. I’m honored to be among so many talented artists gathered by author Barbara Delaney. This inspirational book is mainly a compilation including some of the best articles and projects from the first six years of Cloth Paper Scissors magazine. The book also includes an intro chapter with tips to start making art and ends with a chapter about getting that art out there. As a graphic designer, I totally appreciated the book’s gorgeous photography and layout (publisher Interweave has quite the talented staff!)
I’ll admit it was pretty fun to discover my leg on the back cover. Well not my leg exactly, but the leg of the apron-wearing heroine I painted. You can order The Cloth Paper Scissors Book right here.
September 12, 2011
This summer we visited some very Big Bugs at a local park. These amazing sculptures by artist David Rogers WoWed my family. David creates the sculptures by using various combinations of whole trees found standing or fallen dead, cut green saplings selectively harvested from the willow family, dry branches, and other forest materials.
Here’s my three providing persepctive. Big bugs indeed.
Each bug in the exhibit was thoughtfully installed were the actual bugs might be found. This dragonfly had hundreds of the real live versions buzzing around him.
Here’s my favorite, the bee with flower. Completely gorgeous.
Daddy Long Leg spiders really can be beautiful. Seriously.
I’d love to plunk this dazzling butterfly right down in my own garden…even if it is almost 5 feet across.
This amazing traveling exhibit is a must-see if you have the opportunity. It was a highlight of our summer… despite being forced to do the bug hokey pokey at the coordinating park bug show. No photos available.
September 3, 2011
It’s only September, but I’m joining major retailers everywhere in anticipation for one of my favorite holidays. Halloween season along with haunted happenings (cue spooky music) will be here before we know it. This week’s Illustration Friday prompt, “mysterious”, is right up this haunted trail…a trail leading to a very mysterious house made of burlap. Can you hear shrieking from inside the decrepit walls?
A crow named Ted (ha!) hangs out on the rooftop.
I’ll be placing this painting in a thrifted frame spray painted black.
May 2, 2011
A sunny poppy garden
I’ve finished up my first round of poppy paintings. Included are plenty of actual poppy seeds. I kept things relatively simple (no text) to keep focus on the poppies.
(purple poppy print available here)
For all three paintings, I used tissue paper to create the flowers and Mary Beth’s awesome stencils to add texture in the background.
(fuchsia poppy print available here)
Our live flowers have had plenty of April showers for blooming purposes. Now I’m ready for a little sun. please.
April 12, 2011
And you thought they were only in muffins
Ever have this problem…Poppy seeds in gel medium? Or maybe gel medium mixed in with poppy seeds? What…you haven’t?! As I stare at the latest conundrum turning my left brain off has gotten me into, I wonder if I’m the only person on this planet to do this. Apparently, I was too excited about the idea of using poppy seeds in my poppy field painting to stop and consider the ramifications. So now I have three options:
(a) Pick each poppy seed out of medium with tweezers (waaaaay crazy);
(b) Throw the entire jar of medium away (too wasteful);
(c) paint more poppies
It seems option (c) is the only logical answer.
Here’s a sneak peek at a portion of my original painting still in the works (it’s big…24″ x 36″) that sparked my bright idea. Along with poppies, we’ve got a strange combination of ballerinas and snowpeople in the studio today in various stages of completion. With all of that on my palette, I hardly have time to think logically. However, I’m sure going to try to remember this lesson: One of the smallest seeds in the universe should neverever come near the actual jar of gel medium.
March 19, 2011
print available here
This week’s challenge over on Illustration Friday is “Cultivate.” Growing beauty begins with cultivating sturdy roots. This means putting in some hard work and dealing with rainy days. Growth happens before the actual flowers bloom. And that’s not to say that everything “planted” around here blooms, but I believe if you plant enough seeds eventually you’re going to be rewarded with flowers.
March 18, 2011
2011 Vegas Art & Soul
I’m finally back. And no I haven’t been in Vegas for an entire month, except maybe in spirit. Me and two of my very favorite Chicagoland girlfriends met up at the Green Valley Ranch resort for four days of fun and creativity at Art & Soul. Sure there was the art part, but even better was spending time with these two. Also ranking high on the list: The $4.99 all-you-can-eat breakfast buffet; Monday night’s Meatballs-n-Martinis (no kidding); Shopping (Anthropologie was right outside the door!); Early morning workouts at the spa’s beautiful facility; and laughing so hard/loud the resort needed to call the room to make sure we were okay (eh hem.) Then there was the debut of Claire (pix on right) and I on a ginormous stage for Rock Star karaoke which included a little Joan Jett with a LIVE band, strobe lights, smoke and an enthusiastic audience. Thank goodness Heather can’t figure out how to load the video she shot of that debacle. And “unfortunately” I don’t have karaoke photos, but here at least is the art part…
A Fluid Romance taught by Kari McKnight went over a wide range of techniques I experimented with in the painting above. The painting itself is a tribute to my grandparents loaded with meaning and memories.
While I wasn’t sure if Steampunk was going to rock my world, I have to say that I found the class fascinating. Brenda Mattson taught us the history of the Steampunk movement and turned us loose on boxes containing thousands of inner vintage watch workings and other time pieces to incorporate into our jewelry making. I really got into it. Two more pieces to follow…
A steampunk flower and…
a more modern take using the backs of the timepieces. Check out the gorgeous colors.
Lisa Kaus took us on a color journey in Color My World. I composed a personal piece with a “D” for Daley and a flower for each of my kiddos. I had brought along some samples of their handwriting to personalize each flower.
Last but not least, Musical Cats and Dogs taught by Julie Haymaker Thompson was one of my favorite classes. I made the music box above featuring a little dog at a party. The box appropriately plays ”Happy Birthday.” When my kindergartner saw this she proclaimed it was all she wanted for her upcoming birthday. No toys, nothing else, but the music box. Her wish was granted several days ago when she turned six. My youngest celebrated with her music box and a cake made especially for the budding artist she is (Cake post soon!)
If you’ve ever considered an art retreat, let me highly recommend. As an artist, it’s so important to step out of your box and learn different techniques. Making what you learn your own will add new dimension to your work.
If you’re not completely convinced, I was reading Town & Country the other night and stumbled upon this by a physician/nutrionist: “Age 40 marks the onset of decline in areas of memory and learning, but by learning something new in middle age, we encourage brain growth and stop brain decline. Things like traveling to a new place, learning a language or taking a continuing education class keep the brain young.” So there. And if art isn’t your thing, consider travel (when you can) along with classes that interest you. After all, we have to keep our wits right?!