Monday, May 30, 2011

A full life

I missed you all last week! I had some unavoidable health issues, and then we had the terrific pleasure of driving out to pick up my son from school - all of which prevented me from updating here like I had wanted to.

My son is a ballet dancer who attends UNCSA for their high school dance program, and he just completed his freshman year. We are incredibly proud of him, and he has LOVED his time there so far.

Its so nice to have him back home, as brief as it is. In a couple of weeks, we have to drive him down to Miami for his 5 week intensive with the Miami City Ballet. A dancers life is a full one, and we don't get to seem him much anymore.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Postcard Friday

My son goes to school out of state, and I send him these postcards every week. Its really my way of sharing pieces of who I am with him.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Praise of Morning is in the shop

Praise of Morning
9 x 12
Acrylic on canvas sheet

This painting is a one of a series of hand studies.

This contemplative piece appreciates those moments when you take pause and enjoy the quiet. This lovely painting is loaded with texture and depth.

Available in my shop for $30

-->Click here to buy<--

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Link of the Day - Jonathan Harris : Today

I've always enjoyed the photos from folks who participated in Project 365 and DITL. There is something really intimate and telling in such pictures and I always feel that I know the individual better than I otherwise would have.

Jonathan Harris takes his project to another level in this short film. He narrates as all of his gorgeous and otherworldly images pulse from one to the next. We get to hear his feelings on the work, the process and how it evolves into its own philosophy. Its moving and all together wonderful.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Swap goodness

I've been having such a good time swapping mail art with Jessica Gowling! Last time we traded one of my postcards for her wonderful first zine. This time, I received her envelope full of original art and delightful ephemera!

In turn, I sent her a mini print, an original drawing, and some paper goodness of my own.

There really is something magical about getting a little bit of art magic in the mailbox. Anyone else want to swap? :)

Monday, May 16, 2011

Studio time

I wanted to share with you how I organize my paint tubes. I got cheap little crates from the dollar store and turned them on their side so that all my tubes would face out. Because they are tubes, they taper, and I haven't found them to work so well standing up.

I also painted the tops so I could easily see which color to grab as I'm painting, which is awesome in more ways than I can describe. Being such a visual person, it really helps to be able to see what I want as I'm mixing colors without really having to think about it.

How do you organize your colors?

Friday, May 13, 2011

Postcard Friday

My son goes to school out of state, and I send him these postcards every week. Its really my way of sharing pieces of who I am with him.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Heron Blues is in the shop

Heron Blues
4 x 4 inches
Acrylic on canvas panel

This little painting glows with layers of brilliant colors and strong silhouettes!

This is from a stamp series that uses hand carved block stamps and acrylic paint. Its a multi step process involving several layers of paint for an image with depth and exuberance.

Available in my shop for $20

-->Click here to buy<--

Link of the Day - Between the Folds

Origami is far more than paper cranes these days. With a thriving community that pulls the best of art and engineering together, the boundaries are getting pushed further and further in ways that are both beautiful and exciting.

The documentary is a little slow paced, but I recommend sticking with it because it really does deliver. Just seeing what can be done with a single fold is worth the price of admission.

To add to the story, there is a copyright dust-up between popular origami artist Robert Lang (seen in the documentary) and contemporary artist Sarah Morris. Morris took the folding patterns from dozens of origami creators and turned them into vibrant 2D paintings that have sold for hundreds of thousands of dollars. Lang and others are suing Morris for copyright violation.

Copyright in the artistic domain has always been a tricky issue. It will be interesting to see how the issues of derivative vs. transformative work shake out in front of a judge.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Lost my stride

Have you ever been in a rhythm of life that works and supports you, only to lose it? That just happened to me! I had an art groove goin on, and I was able to keep pushing forward in spite of family obligations, mini meltdowns, and all those obstacles that life inevitably throws at us.

I had the most amazing weekend. I cleaned the house with my kids until it was sparkling and ran all the important errands on Saturday. Then on Mothers Day I went kayaking on three lakes for several hours.

We saw different kinds of heron, red-wing blackbirds, canada geese, humming birds, yellow finches and a big fat groundhog.

There was grand adventure when we found our own hidden pond through the brambles, off of a main lake. It took me back to my childhood and longing for my own Secret Garden.

It was all so beautiful, and like being pulled into another world - which has kindof been my problem. I can't seem to find my footing back in my daily reality.

Hopefully I can find my way back soon. In the meantime, I'll be daydreaming of being on the water with the sun at my back, the scent of spring flowers, and birdsong filling my ears.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Postcard Friday

Taking another postcard detour this week! I participated in a wonderful swap with nature loving artist Jessica Gowling, who sent me her first fantastic mini zine. In turn, I mailed her this postcard, which I hope she enjoyed. :)

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Shadow of my Former Self is in the shop

Shadow of my Former Self
7.5 x 5.5 inches
Collage on book board

This is a unique piece of art on an old book hardcover. It has fraying ends, like the raucous calls of an aging woman's memory.

Available in my shop for $20

-->Click here to buy<--

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Link of the Day - Emily Crabtree

This is a lovely little video about artist Emily Crabtree. She works with ink, paper and vellum to create pieces that are organic and secretive.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Artists Against AIDs success!

The lovely Jan - proud keeper of one of my birds, and local gallery owner

We went to the public opening of the Artists Against AIDs show to scope out where my paintings landed, and to see what our other talented area artists had submitted.

It's a huge event this year with 11,000 square feet of space used to house as much art as humanly possible. It certainly made for a rich visual experience.

As I spied my bird paintings, I caught some women talking about them and I went over to introduce myself. Turns out, she was buying this painting on the spot! How fun is that?!

Well I was so excited, and later conversation revealed that shes a local gallery owner who would like to have more of my little canvases in her space! What serendipity!

Its been an extremely exciting art week for me. I get to go in tomorrow to pick up any remaining art that didn't sell and a check for those that did. It feels a little like Christmas morning. :)

Monday, May 2, 2011

All together now

I received this photo from my son last night. He has all of the postcards put up together on the cork board above his desk. Its so nice to see them as if they were one large art project. :)

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Inspiration of the Month - Darla Jackson

I love to use animals in my work because I think they convey the entire range of human emotion. You can imagine then how awestruck I was when I first saw Darla Jackson's sculpture! Her work is so expressive and each subject has more than enough to share with the viewer. I am captivated and haunted by the beautiful vulnerability threaded through each piece. I hope someday to bring one of them home.

What are your main inspirations in art?

I am inspired by everything from movies, artists, music, etc to random stories I read on the internet, but three of my biggest inspirations have been Disney movies (all of them...seemingly so lighthearted but most are actually quite dark), Eminem lyrics (what can I say :), and my husband Justin, who is also a sculptor, who continues to push me (and my work) to the next level.

What is your art background? (education, experience, etc)

I graduated from Moore college of Art & Design in 2003 with a BFA in Sculpture. My first job out of college was as a scenic sculptor for Kitchen Sink Fabrications and this was essentially my dream job. I was paid to sculpt animals all day, including a maquette for a 14 ft high baby chicken that now lives in the State Museum of Harrisburg in a children's exhibit. From there I went on to teach figure and animal sculpture classes at the Community Arts Center in Wallingford, PA and the Fleisher Art Memorial in Philadelphia, PA (I still teach at Fleisher). I also have taught at Stockton College in Pomona, NJ and currently teach at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts in Philadelphia, PA. I've been showing my work since leaving Moore in 2003 and show often in Philadelphia and the surrounding area, and as far away as Tremelo, Belgium.

What is your process for creating your work?

I always start by sketching...sometimes the image comes to me first and sometimes the idea comes to me first. If the image comes to me first, I just start making it and try to figure out the meaning along the way. If the idea comes first, I research what animals I might want to use to express the idea and look up any symbolism related to the idea (I'm a big fan of symbolism...). I start by sculpting the piece in clay first, then making a mold of it. I cast the final piece in either Gypsum Cement or Polyurethane Resin. Once the piece is cast and cleaned up, I patina it with a graphite finish. Any other elements are added at this time (i.e. party hats).

What is the single most important thing you want to communicate with your work?

The single most important thing for me to communicate with my work is some kind of connection with the viewer. Most of my work is meant to show human emotion and when a viewer identifies with the piece I feel that its successful.

What are your career goals?

My current goals are to continue making new bodies of work and finding new venues in which to show them. I'd like to branch out to the West coast and galleries in Europe. I'm also interested in doing larger installations...full houses/buildings, outdoors, etc. In addition to those goals, I love working with other artists and have some plans for future collectives and artists groups!

What one object has been the most instrumental in helping you achieve what you have so far?

Does my husband count? He has been amazing, helping me with molds, armatures, critiques, installation, deinstallation, you name it. I wouldn't have gotten nearly as much done without his help and support.

Tell me three random things about you.
  • I hate slugs.
  • I am irrationally terrified of zombies.
  • I used to be a power lifter and a tattoo apprentice.
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