Friday, May 28, 2010

Art and Life

Two more portraits to add to my Body of Work! I'm really enjoying doing these, getting into the Zone, when Time stands still. This is my friend, Patti Gibbons from the Hudson Valley. Annie, Patti, and I traveled through Maine and Nova Scotia together two years ago and will hang out together again this summer when I go East to teach at Art-Is-You in CT in October.

I'm not as happy with the first (horizontal) portrait of Patti...making ART always makes me want to make MORE. The photo of Patti smoking that I used for this painting was taken in Annie's back yard, the night I left NY for the West...neither of them usually smokes, and I never do. Interesting to see how each painting shows a different aspect of Patti. You can see her at her blog:

This is the portrait of Loel Annie Barr from that same night in June 2005. It would be fun to take pictures of them in my current back yard, although it's still too cold here in the NW to sit outside. David C and I were talking the other night about Art-Making being my religion...I can get lost in the timeless Zone when I'm painting. With a long weekend coming up and four days off, my self-induced pressure is on, to create and achieve: Start the wedding portrait of Meg and Mo, work on HOT FLASH, finish the Big Doll, Juan de Fuca Festival, arrange rocks in my yard (if the rain stops long enough).

Last weekend was David and Winnie the dog.

Yes, and it was, indeed,
sunny in the rain forest.
We went to see Sarah and Aaron in Forks, and to the Rain Forest for the first time since I moved here...we did so much on visits pre 2005, but once I moved here to live, I've been so focused at home, I have not traveled much.

Decrease the Pressure. Enjoy the Process. Balance the Life!

I see that I am becoming redundant...oh, well.


Sunday, May 23, 2010

Art and Life

Here I am, happily in the HOH Rainforest yesterday. Notice jacket, sweater, scarf, silk shirt...May in the NW!

David came over from Seattle, since Brian was away at Band Camp. David brought his cute little Mini (his second), along with the new dog, Winnie, who I am beginning to think of as my youngest niece. (see my Facebook page for pictures of the adoption).

I love the drippy moss, dappled light, the 500-year-old tree. We have Such Beautiful surroundings here! One advantage of being over 62 is having a Golden Eagle pass to get into any National Park for free. Too bad it takes a visitor to get me out enjoying my surroundings--that's not totally true.

Little car, big trees. Good to hang out with my youngest brother.
Today he worked on some new cloaks for Winnie, while I cooked. We are lucky to have siblings we enjoy.

I am lucky to have more wonderful things to do than time--much preferable to the other way around!

The ART PART: Last weekend's Tiny Art Quilt class at Quilted Strait, now in Port Gambol, WA. A wonderful group of women and class room. We had fun working inside on a Beautiful Saturday, although I did stop at the beach in Port Townsend on my way home...LOVE the beaches!

Kathie Karst's piece, using tree fungus, attached with tulle.

Lindy Leon, sewing like mad on her fabric journal pages. She had a whole furniture unit with drawers of supplies...serious Workshopper!

Mo Harrah's tape-transferred Monkey face in a fabric jungle. Even though she left all her treasures at either the old MT or new PA home, she made do in style, and said she enjoyed being able to play, instead of teach.

I wore my pieced ancestor vest, with photo transfers onto cloth on the back, showing the wedding of my mother's parents in 1918. Here, Patsy Simpson and I are discussing strategy for her music-oriented piece. She says she's going to applique piano keys.

Thanks, Wendy Whittenmore, for furnishing some of the pictures of class. Here you are, contemplating your next move...

and the tribute quilt for your husband .
you made below...I imagine we could have just kept sewing and sewing, talking and talking. Thank you, Ladies, for a fun Saturday!

Kris invited me back for a return engagement in the fall, maybe Ancestor dolls.

In October, I head East to teach 3 classes at Art-Is-You in CT: Angels and Icons--tiny dolls, Dancing on the Edge--dolls using found objects, and Star of My Own Show--self portraits.

There is also my current fascination with painting portraits. I am using charcoal and acrylic on heavy water color paper, to save money and storage space, but am thinking that canvas is easier, and doesn't have to be framed. I've slowed down considerably since I did the eight portraits in seven days thing...

The first Patti portrait and then the start of the second Patti portrait. I always see things I want to do differently next time, which means do Another, then Another.

I'm still chugging along with the HOT FLASH book, too--send me pictures and stories, the yard, cleaning house (at least once every 6 months), work--ah, yes, work that keeps a roof over my head while I play and make ART. What is the Answer for a healthy and happy life? Is it to be content with accomplishing a little bit of a lot of things, even while I try to keep honing and honing to the most important (to me)?


Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Tiny Art Quilts this weekend in Port Gambol, etc.

Quilted Strait, formerly of Port Angeles, has moved to historic Port Gambol, with a fabulous new space, in a large red building near the outdoor vendors. The class for this Saturday, May 15th, 11am-5pm, is Tiny Art Quilts, and includes: Wall Hangings,

Fabric Journals,

and Artist Trading Cards.

There is still space in the class, so contact Kris Cornell

if you'd like to join in the fun.

I'll help with patterns, design ideas, photo transfers onto fabric, tape transfers, and gel transfers.

Every year I keep cutting back on teaching, both because of my job responsibilities and because I need more time to work on my own art projects, BUT I WILL be teaching at Art-Is-You in Danbury, CT, in October, 2010. Here are a couple of samples from my Self Portrait class, which I'll be teaching on the West Coast (Friday Harbor) the second weekend in November.

Exploring the INNER YOU, in fabric, paper, paint, beads, wire, and everything else we can think of, so Start Saving up!


Sunday, May 02, 2010

Art Life Work Travel

Patti's portrait, Phase I. I wanted to finish today (Sunday) but I may not make it. I'm in a funk, maybe overload of Interesting Things to Do. I'm running up against the Brick Wall of Too much to Do and Too Little Time! And after the message this morning in Meditation about how much we create our own versions of reality, I Should (bad word) be totally mellow, inside rotating all my interests and accomplishing a bit at a time...or Running Outside each time the sun comes out and re-arranging my stones.

And Every Once in a While, one Must get out (off the Peninsula) and honor a date made back in February, to meet up with Karen Ford and be taken on the Grand Tour of Poulsbo.

I am trying to remember to pack my camera every time I go out, and here was a photo-op of shades of gray, converging lines, the dejected posture of the man in the old VW van in front of me (toting 2 male teens), while waiting for the Hood Canal Bridge to close after the ships went through.

Poulsbo is a very cute Norwegian theme town on one of the many bodies of water around here...I need to put up a map for myself! and learn my new (5 years now) home turf. We had a lovely lunch of fish and chips and really good coleslaw, and I wish I'd taken a picture of the place and wish I remembered the name. Karen says it's Pamela Armas' favorite place to eat in Poulsbo, and Pamela knows her restaurants.

We also got to tour the best resources: beads (Imagine That!), rubber stamps (Rubber Soul), and the ever-tempting Central Market. Co-ops of the local artists' work, cute houses in the hilly neighborhoods, too.

Karen's house is ALL studio, with a potential additional studio out back. Getting used to single life again at 63 is a challenge, and she has good support from Jack's sisters and her own brother. I wish I could have met Jack. From his pictures and her stories, he was quite a guy. Karen's going to send me the address of her blog, so once I figure out how to do it, I can post it on my blog as a place to go...also Mike Yeager's. I must be using an older version of blogspot, and I can't figure out how to make the links permanent, because I didn't put the current ones up there....and I don't know if I could really face starting fresh with a new template.

Ah, the tiny violins are playing on the radio for me now. I am SO lucky to be here in the NW, surrounded by beauty, by friends and family, AND with MORE ideas than time!

Here's the beach at Port Townsend with the tiny white lighthouse way in the distance, a patch of sun at 7pm where I stopped on an otherwise cloudy, rainy, and adopted rocks for my yard.

I keep advising others to trust their I really should take my own advice. Some times friends and adventure are sacrificed for Art, sometimes Projects and Art are put aside for friends and adventures...and maybe a little of both all the time. I am Very Grateful for my day job that supports my Art habit, but sometimes I long for uninterrupted hours to explore Every Avenue...not many have that, fewer and fewer these days.

So, on a lighter note--I am working at following my Buddhist teaching to:

(1) Appreciate the rain for the opportunity it affords me to stay inside and work on Art: books and sculpture and painting
(2) Appreciate Friends and Family and the beauty of the Olympic Peninsula for getting me out of my Self---boy, do I need that!
(3) Appreciate the endless Inspiration from friends, travels, materials, and the universe.

BUT I have a question, which may take some time to answer:

WHY did I feel Compelled to purchase two packs of ephemera, when I have a whole bureau full at home, because of this image--What is it about this image???

The necklace of colored skulls, I can understand! Also special thanks to Karen for turning me on to Century Girl--an Amazing use of collage to tell a story. I went on to amazon late at night (very dangerous) and ordered it, PLUS three other books...

Thanks for your inspiration, Karen, and stay tuned to see what I do with all your inspiration!

Two tiny birds dueling on top of the fence, they match each other posture for posture, fly up, flapping...they're not any bigger than the gourd skull at the end of the fence, and they keep coming back to the confrontation...are they dueling or courting? Life, Death, Earth shaking drama, just outside my window...Maybe I'll actually do the HOT FLASH page for Facebook next..there are too many other people involved, for me to let that languish.