"Friendship is the source of the greatest pleasures and without friends even the most agreeable pursuits can become tedious." St. Thomas Aquinas

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Time for Tea & Crumpets

I am not a tea drinker and never have been, so when I decided to do some tea staining recently, I wanted to find some tea that was different than the Lipton tea bags I use for sun tea, for the family.  (Honestly it's been years).  I stood in the tea aisle, browsing the various boxes, smelling the various scents and feeling totally overwhelmed.  I finally settled on a Celestial Seasonings, Lemon Zinger, because I simply love the smell of lemon. So, I proceeded to heat a pan of water, threw in all the tea bags and waited for the whole thing to get hot.  I was pleasantly surprised to see a blood red color instead of the usual sepia color of what I thought all tea looked like.  I poured the tea into a glass jar to save it for later and proceeded to lay the bags on watercolor paper to let them dry and stain the paper at the same time.  Another beautiful surprise!  The paper stains were lavender with a hint of green!  Crazy!

The dried tea bags are a cool pinkish red color and will be used in some collage.

The red tea is being used to over-dye some shibori fabrics I did this past summer and I am leaving them to soak overnight to let the tea process the fabrics, as much as possible.  It's not easy to be patient!

These papers will be used in some art journals later, but these photos will be used in my digital art to create some awesome backgrounds.  Combined with some other photography of local landscapes, the results should be interesting.  Never really know what you will get, unless we try.

I found myself in the tea aisle again today, sort of swaying back and forth until I picked up the smell of peppermint!  I found some green tea too, so hopefully that will be a good tea for staining as well. I also picked up something that I've never seen before, some Lipton tea that is Southern Sweet Tea for the hubby.  Hope he likes it!

Thursday, December 14, 2017

A Day of Play

I decided I needed to drag out all my mixed media supplies, starting with a bag of vintage ephemera to design some fun journal pages.  I have been so focused on the remodel of our new retirement home that I wanted to have a day of play.

These are quite large, 9 x 12 but they will be folded and made into an art journal with other interesting pages.

By creating these 4 layouts together, I was able to use the same color palette and inks.  They will be used for sketches, scanned into my computer to be used for my digital backgrounds and could become greeting cards in the future.

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

What's Coming in 2017!

My calendar is beginning to look pretty booked up for 2017.  Starting in January, I will be traveling to a few places I haven't been too in several years,  January through October, I will be teaching several classes & workshops that I am really looking forward to.  Subjects include: Watercolor, Screen Printing, Paper Collage, Abstract Acrylic, Gelli Printing and more!  Plus I will be taking a few workshops this year as well. I love to learn new things.  It's going to be a fun, productive year!

Image is of a gelli print I made a few years ago. These make the most awesome backgrounds for greeting cards, art journals, ATC cards, etc. 

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

On Vacation

Well, that was the original plan, but with the selling of our home and the packing involved, it was anything but a vacation so far.  I was able to meet up with friends during a Monday paint group and attend Tom Howard's workshop last Saturday. This week I did all of the things on my never ending list of To Do's, in order that I might get to go paint with my friends again tomorrow.  I will be there!

Recently I have been playing around with paper collage and this is just one of the many that I have created.  It's currently in the Wishing Spring Gallery, Bella Vista, AR along with some fabric arts, giclees of my watercolors and in the near future, some mixed media jewelry.

In the meantime, I will be participating in the 48th Annual Bella Vista Arts & Crafts Festival, of which I was honored to paint the poster for this wonderful event.

Sunday, July 31, 2016

New Directions-New Adventures

Recently I took the plunge to offer prints of my artwork, past, present & future.  It has been a long road that began in the 70's when I was selling my original artworks immediately, sometimes before they were finished, before they were framed, but needless to say, they are lost to me now.  With the new way of communicating directly to the whole world in a matter of seconds, with options unlimited, I can now present a wide range of products to purchase with selected art displayed.  Who knew this would be available 40 years ago!  This is a big leap for me as I have accumulated hundreds of travel photos, hundreds of paintings, collages, fiber arts and all will be available on-line in the new future.  Taking a new path can lead to amazing adventures.  There is a new widget on the right,  If you click on it, you will be able to see the images I have loaded to these on-line shops: Pixels and FineArtAmerica  Thanks!

Thursday, July 28, 2016

Two Months Flew By

I can hardly believe half of 2016 is already over, but it was sure plentiful in adventures.  I feel as if I've lived 4 life times in the past 62 years.  My life has been full of wonder and marvelous things.  I wouldn't even know where to start telling the stories, but the best part is, I'm entering a new phase of life, with many more promising adventures to come.  The photo on the right is of a co-op somewhere in Oklahoma maybe, I don't remember.  What I do remember though, is, I took it from a moving vehicle.  I'm getting pretty darn good at doing that if I do say so myself.  If we stopped every time I saw something of interest, it would take years to get across the country.  That would be something I could do when my loving hubby decides to retire.  For now, I'm content to go along for the ride and snap pics through the windshield.   This one might be worthy of a painting.  Yes? No?  If time permits?  

Friday, May 6, 2016

Busy Day in the Studio

While vegging out at the Marriot-Springhill Suites-in Oklahoma City for the past few days, I was able to get in some great study time.  The Art of Watercolor magazine had some pretty amazing artists featured in the most recent issue.  I found several techniques to experiment with when I got back to my studio.  Mixing walnut ink with watercolor pigments was my favorite and the results were compelling me to try more pigments.  It also lead me to experiment with mixing plain watercolor pigments of darker values with my routine palette for some interesting color play.  Love the beautiful dark gray I got mixing Burnt Umber with Cobalt Blue.  

Saturday, April 30, 2016

New App

In todays techno world, there truely is an app for just about anything and everything.  This blogger app allows me to post on the go, from anywhere I have a wifi or sprint connection.  There are still a few places around with no services for miles, but sometimes, having some downtime allows you to reenergize or get bored.  Today I am exploring the options this new app offers and whether or not I think it's a tool I will actually use for the benefit of saving me time.

Friday, August 7, 2015

Taylorsville Photo Club

In Liberty Park there is an 8 acre Bird Park called Tracy Aviary.  A very interesting place to see some very interesting birds.  My favorite of all birds are the Flamingo's and they are living in a unique habitat, very much like their natural environment.

One thing that is really exciting and fun to watch, is the Bird Show that happens twice a day.  The image here, is one of the many bird species that plays a part in the show.

After exploring the entire Aviary, we decided to venture into the park itself.  The glass greenhouse is a sight to behold.  When the sun is out, the glass reflects the sky and appears to be blue, but yesterday it was a little overcast, so the glass looked almost frosted.  One surprise for me was, the door to enter the greenhouse was open.  Finally I had my chance to go take a peek inside.  What a great space.  I was able to get some interesting photos of overgrown "Pregnant Onions".  The largest I had ever seen.  About the size of a free-standing range in your kitchen,   Pretty big for a plant I used to grow as a house plant!

Another thing we were able to do is visit the Chase House.  Home to local Folk Art, a museum of local culture.  Did you know they offer free evening entertainment?  Stop in and grab yourself a schedule of events.

If you are interested in photography and would like to learn more, join us at the Taylorsville Senior Center on Thursday mornings at 10:30.  

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Art Everywhere You Look

I recently took a weekend road trip up to Evanston, Wyoming for a photo op and to enjoy the horse races.  Yup, they are running again after several years of being shut down,  New owners are back in business.  Not to be side-tracked, we were driving around town and we found this amazing old brick railroad round house,  Parked next to some older derelict buildings was this dining car.  Someone had boarded up all the windows which was probably a good thing, but they also had painted people sitting at tables on the wood.  You never know where you might find the work of another artist.  I'm always on the look out.

Found art is appreciated and I know several artists who like to leave little tokens of their work for others to find. It might be a sticker on a light pole, a wall mural behind a gate, a scrap of paper left on a table,  You never know where you might find some artwork so be on the lookout.

Monday, June 1, 2015

What can you do with Stenciled-Gelli Printed Papers?

After creating some beautiful alternative gelli plate prints, using Cecilia Swatton's amazing stencil designs, (exclusive at Stencil Girl Stencils) this question always seems to arise:  What do you use these papers for?  And I always have an answer.  

There are many uses,  depending on the type of paper that I recycled.  The list is long and includes creating bound art journals, but this week I used these beautiful painted papers to create something new:  "Art Jewelry".  

Easy and lightweight!  These take only a few supplies such as: eyelets, hand punches for the shapes and rounded corners, Glossy Accents if you want the paper to look like polished stone, a cropodile tool to create holes and set eylets, plus miscellaneous jewelry parts to create earrings and pendants such as these.

But since nothing is allowed to go to waste, even the negative cut-out shapes are put to use.  Here they were used to create some fun bookmarks to give as gifts.  Just need to pick up some tassles of tie some raffia through the eyelet and they will be finished. 

Friday, May 22, 2015

Alternative Gelli Plate Prints

At our open studio this morning we played around with an alternative Gelli Plate printing technique, using stencils from my good friend Cecilia Swatton, via Stencil Girl.  Along with a variety of texture tools, these were some of the prints that were made.  Totally had a great time and will be making some fun and funky jewelry next week from these awesome papers.

Friday, May 1, 2015

Out and About

I was driving around the other day trying to find some places that could be used for plein air painting and perhaps a picnic with lots of shade and I happened to see these new ducklings swimming along Canal Street.  I just had to jump out and get some pics.  

Sunday, April 5, 2015

On-line Mini Workshop

I recently was the lucky winner of Tracy Vertugo's "Animalisto Mini MOJO Workshop".  It is based on those adorable hand painted, whimsical wood carved animals from Mexico.  I'm sure over the years you've seen a few.  They are decorated with fun bold colors and funky patterns.  I tried my hand at doing an owl but it began as an angry owlette.  I finished it this morning and while it isn't exactly whimsical in the style of animalistos, I like it.  

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Fallen Leaves

This painting was started months ago but was set aside while I was on vacation.  Today I found it in a stack of old paintings I was going to recycle and decided to go ahead and finish it.  Because the paints I used were cheap liquid watercolor I knew I needed to be careful in my approach.  Or better yet, just try to accomplish some depth and shadows.  I love negative painting and I still have a lot to learn but it's also a ton of fun just playing with the various wet media.  I ended up using walnut ink, acrylic ink and more watercolor in a violet & deep yellow.