Saturday, December 22, 2007

Season Greetings

There are two ways of spreading light; to be
The candle or the mirror that reflects it. -Edith Wharton

Let's celebrate the return of the Light at Winter Solstice. The ending of one season and the beginning of another offer a time for reflection and renewal. These thoughts come from Sarah Breathnach's book 'Simple Abundance' for this day. As I reflect on all the blessings received in 2007, life is rich and good, full of wonderful connections, love, opportunities and much happiness. Thank you to each of you who touched my life and continue to enrich it.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Guardian Angels

At the end of the year when I count my blessings, I feel expecially touched by several guardian angels in my life. Laurie Mika made this wonderful icon that looks over my desk. Her colors and mosaics intrigue, captivate and warm my heart.

To my delight, Suzanne made this great little box for me. What little treasures will go inside? Something special for sure.

The top sings with color, texture and hope of future travels. Maybe a seafaring adventure awaits for 2008?

Patricia made this inro pendant. The Japanese used inro to hold small objects becuase traditional clothing lacked pockets. Inside she tucked these cute little snowmen earrings.

My newest gaurdian angel is Fiona. She wants to dance with the stars. Darlene and her daughter, Cora, make these silly sock creatures. Their whimsy and funny, fat-lipped faces light up my day.

Yesterday, they had a booth at the Rebel Rabbit craft fair at Hipbone Studio on E. Burnside. After seeing Darlene and Cora, I waited in a long line to get into crafty wonderland at the Old Norse Hall. Over 100 venders and wall to wall buyers filled both downstairs and upstairs. Portland promotes handmade gifts in a big way. Tis the season to buy homemade and support cottage crafters and artists.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Portland Art Collective Show Great Success

Our Portland Art Collective Show was a great success. In three hours, we transformed the Multnomah Arts Center gym into a winter wonderland of open doors. All of our hard work paid off with great art, attendance and response. Everyone enjoyed the hands-on demonstrations and sharing of creative energy.

I showed my monotype prints and three shrines. Below is detail of the shrine window on the right.Showing and selling my art is a new adventure- especially on this scale. I feel so fortunate to have the support of family, friends, and all the members of the Portland Art Collective. Thanks to all of you who came, said hello, bought art and enjoyed the show. A big thank you to Scott Jones for taking the photos.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Gratitude and Weekend Work

Hope you had a Happy Thanksgiving. We are grateful for so much this year- family, friends, good health and many opportunities for growth and creativity. The above window will go in a shrine I'm making for our Portland Art Collective Show in a couple of weeks. It's getting down to the wire and I'm spending a lot of time in the studio working. Fortunately, my muse is here. Everything flows so much better when she appears and helps to direct the process. I don't know if it's a state of mind, intuition or receptivity but I appreciate her presence.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Pink Week

Cynthia invited friends to celebrate Pink Week at her MoonSea Studio. When was the last time you ate a pink food or entered a pink room? Images of cotton candy, strawberry ice cream, cosmopolitans, Toys 'R Us Barbie doll aisles and Auntie Thelma's bathroom came to mind. We made tissue paper cut outs and ate pink cupcakes with our tea. For a few hours, we enjoyed seeing the world through rose-colored glasses.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Last Bouquet for 2007

Yesterday, I worked in the yard and pruned my roses. Here's the last bouquet for 2007. Even the roses' fall colors are rich and vibrant. They bring a bit of sunshine into the house today. Outside the wind blows and rain pours. It's hard to transition to colder, wet weather. It makes me want to hibernate and read. I'm reading Jodi Picoult's My Sister's Keeper. It's a well crafted, thought provoking novel about a family struggle with daughter Kate's cancer and her sister, Anna, who was conceived to save Kate's life. It's written with lots of insight into coping with a chronic illness and dealing with life-death issues.

Friday, November 9, 2007

Curiosities PhotoArtJournal Book

I feel so fortunate to be apart of a group of artists/photographers who make books. Catherine Anderson hosts the PhotoArtJournal group and assembles each themed book with lots of creative imagination. The curiostities book has to be one of may favorites. The page I made is below. What has eight arms, keen eyesight and cannot hear?

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Colorful Leaves, Value Study & Craft Fair

Playing with leaves and paint creates many different images. Here many layers of leaves were printed, stenciled and traced. To make the lines on the sides, I used a cork wrapped with a rubberband, added paint and rolled it onto the paper. Imagine what you could create with different sized rubberbands. This color palette is one of my favorites- French ultramarine blue, burnt sienna and quinacridone gold. I'm going to press & preserve these leaves in a phone book to use during the year.

Using the French ultramarine blue and burnt sienna, this value study was fun to make drawing trees one behind the other and painting the negative spaces with progressively darker mixes of watercolor.

The Clackamas County Arts & Craft Fair offered me the opportunity to share and sell some of my art. My Grandma Pearson made the beautiful quilt when she was in her 90's. I felt her presence with me all day. She taught me how to knit and crochet along with many other life lessons. I enjoyed the expereince, seeing former coworkers and meeting other artists. Plus, I met my goal in sales.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Hops Nature Journal Page

In our nature journaling class last week, we sat in a restaurant patio, basked in the sunshine, and drew hops. I love the Latin name for hops- humulus lupulus. Just as much fun is imprinting painted leaves onto the page. The leaf used for printing is added with clear contact paper in the left-hand corner. The juxtaposition of natural and geometric shapes adds interest. Happy Halloween everyone!

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Art Challenge with Haiku as Inspiration

tossed stone
the pond's sound
skips through the trees
M. Cohen

Kat challenged art group members to create a piece of art using haiku for inspiration. I loved this exercise and took one of my acylic painted and textured backgrounds from Misty Mawn's class as a base. Using Misty's techniques, I transfered my photos of trees and fall foilage, added some stamped ferns and drew water ripples of the tossed stone. The forest is alive with fall color. Here are some of her other haiku for inspiration.

  • Utter aloneness, another great pleasure in autumn twilight Basho
  • In my dream, my dog has a whistle only I can hear J. Stevenson
  • This cold night, nothing moves but stars J. Brown
  • Alone, learning stillness from the sandstone M. Farley
  • Eating alone, my alphabet soup speaks to me B. Duster
  • New in town, the scent of unknown flowers Y. Chang
  • All along the road, not a single soul only autumn evening comes Basho

Sunday, October 21, 2007

New Work and Autumn Blessings

This fall I'll be in two shows. The first is the Clackamas County Craft Fair at the Public Service Building, 2051 Kaen Road, Oregon City on Friday, November 2nd 9am to 6pm. The second is the Portland Art Collective Show at the Multnomah Arts Center on Friday and Saturday, December 7th and 8th. My monotype prints will be on display and for sale. This summer, I took classes and an open studio with Marcy Baker. Adding my drawings into the prints with chine collé really makes them sing. It's very exciting to share this body of work with all of you.

I took my summer floral sketches and monotypes and made charms out of them.

An afternoon walk at the Leach Botanical Garden made me appreciate the change of seasons. We're fortunate in the Northwest to have long autumns.

Here's another nature journaling exercise with fall leaves. On my walk one morning last week, I picked up leaves, put them in a plastic bag, came home and marveled at all their variety in shape, size and color with pen and paint.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Where did summer go?

Here's two more months of my collaged 2007 calendar with activities full of good friends, art and books. What more could anyone want. Living the creative life exceeds all of my expectations and is wonderful. Every day feels like a vacation. I am so grateful to have these opportunities.

Another good book to read is Ricë Freeman-Zachery's Living the Creative Life- ideas and inspiration from working artists. She interviews fifteen artists and gleans their tips for becoming an artist and keeping at it.

Today, I also uploaded our Portland Art Collective Show card. Save the dates December 7th and 8th on your calendar to come and see the work of this wonderful group of artists. It's at the Multnomah Arts Center. It's a great way to find special gifts for the holidays.

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Art & Soul 2007

Art & Soul just completed a week of classes and fun at the Embassy Suites near PDX. I enjoyed seeing friends and teachers from all over the U.S. plus take a few workshops. The creativity of this group always amazes and inspires me.

My goal this year is to improve my drawing skills. Barbara Roth taught the class 'U Can Draw'.

For fun Sunday night, I took Barbara Matthiessen's class. We drew blind self-portraits. We laughed at our picasso-esque renderings.

One day, I cashiered in the Art & Soul Store. The afternoon was very quiet so I had time to sketch Lorna's vintage ephemera and other goods.

Yesterday, I took another workshop from Barbara Roth. We drew and painted postcards with watercolor. These will be great momentos to send home from future travel adventures. Life would not be the same without all of my wonderful art friends. Each one gives to me so much. Thank you to all!

Monday, September 24, 2007

Oregon Flock & Fiber Festival

Sheep, llamas & alpacas filled the stables at the Clackamas County Fairgrounds in Canby. Vendors sold anything to do with processing wool and making fibers- spinning wheels, roving for felting, yarn for knitting all hand-dyed in incredible colors. I'm definitely a city girl and the Oregon Flock & Fiber Festival proved to be fun for all ages with spinning contests, an antique hand-cranked sock knitting machine demo (it looked like a meat grinder) and lamb cook-offs.

I took beginning feltmaking and locker hooking classes from Una Walker. I love the feel of wool in my hands and will enjoy making more handfelted accessories.

I imagine my grandmothers did locker hooking. Its neat to see the revival of these old crafts.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Botanical Illustration

I spent the last weekend taking a botanical illustration class from Linda Vorobik at the Berry Botanic Garden. These huge lily pods caught my attention during our garden tour.

We selected plants to draw- with the mantra 'measure, measure, draw' to get an accurate rendering for scientific documentation. We copied the drawings in pen & ink and painted them with watercolor glazes. Now I want to learn more about bontanical science and illustrate more plants.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

More Art Excursions

Last week, we sketched at Pittock Mansion. It threatened to rain and clouds covered the Mt Hood view so we spent the afternoon by the Gate Lodge.

This weekend, a group of PAC friends headed up the Columbia River Gorge to the Maryhill Museum of Art to see the 'Gadzooks! Amazing Books' exhibit by Northwest Artists. I don't know which I liked better- the books or 'Le Théâtre de la Mode French Fashion Mannequin Collection'. Both run through November 15th.

We shared art and food and fed the peacocks in the shade .

Today, we visited the Japanese Garden
to sketch and see the High Fiber Diet Art show. Check out the Garden website for more information. The art quilts were inspired by wabi-sabi- "a sense of beauty of things that are simple, natural, sometimes rustic, and always quietly elegant". Karen Miller told us about the Japnaese stencil dye art of katazome. She gives a demo on her website.

Monday, September 3, 2007

Art in the Pearl

Art in the Pearl has to be one of my favorite Portland festivals. Three artists really spoke to me this year. I loved the old-world collages by Danielle Desplan as in the above botanical with her tapestry-like, medieval rendering.

Lissa Herschleb displayed two of her sketchbooks which really caught my attention. Her sketches of the organic, morphed shapes of plants and faces with weight and substance are transformed into her mixed media paintings.

Lisa Kaser makes wonderful, whimsical sculptures with wire and handmade felt and wax. She will participate in the Eastside Portland Open Studios in October. I sure want to visit her studio.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

The Bishop's Close

The Bishop's Close is another Portland treasure and this week's sketching site. The Elk Rock Gardens cover a bluff overlooking the Willamette River.

Double anemones bloom along the path.

A trail hugs the cliff edge and we decide to sketch the landscape to the East from here.

We're rewarded with a beautiful view of the river and Mt Hood.