Monday, December 20, 2010

frosty windows... just for me!

This is a bit woo woo... or twilight zone... but my favorite ladder imagery found it's way into the frost pattern on our garage door.
Isn't that strangely WONDERFUL!
Thanks so much Jack! (Frost)

Friday, December 17, 2010

Fishermen are frothing at the mouth....

The lake is frozen... The fishermen can hardly contain themselves. I guess it's an early freeze. I'd rather skate than fish... and it doesn't look smooth enough this year.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Everchanging view....

I don't tire of the sky's around here.... this was taken a couple of days ago.... but would-ja look at that!  So beautiful I felt the need to share.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Oak Leaf Support... who woulda thunk

Someone sent me a link to some incredible leaf art a few weeks ago... they had intricately carved images out of the leaves.... That got me thinking about leaves as here is my first experiment. The trick is to treat the leaves with glycerin, so they stay supple. I'm thinking I'll need to coat the back of the leaf with some sort of acrylic medium, so it won't crumble... I love experimenting. :)

Friday, November 12, 2010

Back to the High Road...

a "hot" start... who knows where this will end up. 12 x 12 paper.

A start in 3 values... the bones are comes the fun.

I'm getting back to the "high road" series... Here are 2 works in progress... Feels good to be back at the non-representational work. It's a lot harder... but more rewarding.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

finding the sunset setting on my camera...

I posted this photo on my facebook page, but thought the blog deserved it too. Just one of those "right place at the right time" sorts of pics...the "sunset" setting on my little cannon is magical. Really really looked just like that.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

New floral class @ Michael's in Traverse City...

Had fun painting this today in class... The best thing about this lesson is that once you get the idea... you can do it over and over, in different colors. A bouquet for every room! :)

Friday, October 22, 2010

Dandy Sunsets 'Round These Parts.....

Pierce Stocking Drive near Glen Arbor, MI

Last Night

Early September

Just sharing with you all.... We love living here in Honor, MI!

Monday, October 18, 2010

Happiness is having friends to paint with.....

plein air sketch
Platte River enters into Lake Michigan just past this spot

My two good friends, Sue Galos and Patty Henderson, came to visit us last week. What a great time we had.... painting, talking, laughing, playing dominos and watching art videos. And don't get me started on what happened when we opened the newly delivered wine (from at 2:00 in the afternoon..... Sigh... I miss them!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Bathed in Books...

New books to peruse on a cold rainy day....

It's been a while since I've ordered from Amazon. I had quite a few titles in my cart, collected over the last few months. I decided last week, that I was in need of some inspiration, and for me, books are a great source. I'm a book fiend... especially and art book fiend.
So, yesterday the UPS man...(I LOVE him) delivered these beauties. Each one is a delight.

And then the gods delivered this cold, rainy day. Perfect for sitting with a cup of tea and a pile of new art books. mmmmmmmmm Sigh. Ain't life grand?

Here are the titles and authors....
Inside the Painter's Studio; by Joe Fig (I love that name)
Drawing for Mixed Media Artists; by Carla Sonheim (fun!)
Carlson's Guide to Landscape Painting; by John F. Carlson
Landscape Painting; by Mitchell Albala (droolingly beautiful book)

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Pretty Pictures All in a Row....

Paintings are politely lined up.... ready to be wrapped and put into the car for a ride down to Lake Orion, MI for my show at Flint Street Gallery (inside Little Monsters)

The show is called... "Transitions: The Joy of the Process"

Here's my artist's statement for the show....

"Over the last year and a half, our family has gone through some big changes… Moving up to northern Michigan and sadly, my mother’s illness and death were the two biggest things to adjust to. 2009 was a real challenge, and we are transitioning our way through and away from it.

The Collage paintings….

The collage florals are the result of me immersing myself in happy, joyful colors and shapes. The challenge is simplifying the intricate and delicate forms of the flowers. After I get the shapes down, I can have some fun cutting, ripping and pasting; kind of like Kindergarten. Collage also reminds me of the process of quilting. (My mom was a terrific quilter.) I love the feel of the surface of these paintings…tactile. I love smoothing the paper down with my goopy fingers…messy. I love finding just the right piece of paper to add without having to adjust it with paint...finding treasure.

Gouache Ink Resist paintings….

The gouache ink resist pieces are similar to the collage pieces in that it’s about simplifying things, but to an even greater degree. Gouache Ink Resist paintings remind me of linoleum or wood block prints, but without the cut fingers. :) As the title suggests, the gouache (pronounced gwash) is painted on, then covered with india ink. After that’s dry, you hold the paper under running water, to wash away the gouache, revealing the painting. The process takes some planning, and it’s sort of unforgiving, but when it works…. Wow… magic trick at the sink. :)

Both of these types of paintings have helped heal me…I can immerse myself in the effort of creating. For me, it’s all about the joy of the process of artmaking.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Fall is in the air...finally!

Fall 2009... What we have to look forward to!

Ok... I have figured out that I like the "idea" of summer... Picnics, lounging on the decks, boat rides, golf... but the actual summer...especially this actual summer, with it's hot temperatures and no likey.

Today, I needed a hoodie to go down the drive to get the paper. aaaahhhhhhh. Fresh air. It reminded me of the house we lived in in Rochester Hills, MI... We were close enough to the high school that we could hear the marching band practicing in the dark of the early morning. I just loved waking up to the far away beat of the drums and faint music. Nothing like the star spangled banner to get you up in the morning. :)

I really miss that herald of early fall. Maybe I'll grab my kazoo, and march down the drive humming my favorite show tunes. I'm sure our neighbors would appreciate it as much as I did....don'tcha think?

Even without the cooler temps... I can see a change in the quality of the light. The sun is lower in the sky... the colors are becoming more saturated... Magic.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Is my hair too big?

Well.... is it?

One of a few characters I made today with collage and acrylic paint...

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Grumbacher Class samples tadaaaaa!

Landscape Sample for Acrylic classes...
Just a tree... out-standing in a field. :) Easy peasy beginner class.

Floral Sample for acrylic classes...
This one is a bit more involved... But still fine for a beginner.

Classes will be held at Michaels in Traverse City, MI.... I'll post the class dates when they are scheduled. Hope you can join me!

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Doin' the Happy Dance....

I was VERY excited to find that I'd won 2 awards at the ArtCenter Traverse City's "It's Not Just Material" show.... Don and I went to the opening last night...(after we enjoyed our very first "slabtown burgers". Ooooo La La! I had the Olive burger... delish!)

"Keep Climbing"
22 x 22
Acrylic and pencil on paper
Honorable Mention

"Showing Restraint"
30 x 22
5th place

Needless to say... a really really fun evening. :)

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Daffy in progress

"Daffodils... work in progress"
12 x 12 ~ collage and acrylic

Still playing with collage... It's a slow, but satisfying process.
Messy too! And I love messy. :)

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Bouquet in the Grass... Collage!

"Bouquet in the Grass"
6 x 6
Acrylic and Collage on paper

My good friend Sarnia Sue has been my "Food and Drink" magazine supplier for quite a few years. The Liquor Control Board of Ontario (LCBO) puts out these beautiful magazines about 6 times a year. They are full of gorgeous recipes for food and drinks...the photography is fantastic. They even suggest music that you might want to listen to while you eat and drink! My kind of publication...and here's the best part... They are free to anyone that pops into the LCBO stores.

So, what does all that have to do with anything?... Well, the above collage paper was taken from my treasured Food and Drink magazines. Can you spy the onion ring flowers? :) I've saved each and every one she's sent... And since I'm beginning to realize that I can't hold onto EVERYTHING (moving does that to a person).... I've compromised with myself here. I'll be turning my "Food and Drinks" into small collages. :)

Thanks again Sue!

ps... Here's a link to an online version of Food and Drink.... enjoy!

Monday, July 12, 2010

Tra La La La Trillium....

"Tra La La La Trillium"
Collage and acrylic ~ 6.5 x 6.5 inches

Back in the studio feels so good... even if I'm surrounded by boxes (still) and haven't hired the electrician to get the lighting right.

My friend, Kim Santini (fabulous painter) has been playing around with collage, and she inspired me to do the same. This process reminds me of quilting....and I love it!

Most of my collage experience has been non-representational (abstract)... but I sure had fun with this representational piece. I'll be playing around with these for a while me thinks.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Back to WORK!

All is calm....but not bright!

Humid, calm and peaceful here at Platte Lake this morning...

I'm looking forward to a day of painting... with a little bit of cake baking thrown in. (It's my sister's birthday...Happy Birthday, Sue!)

There's been no painting from me for the last few weeks as we go through moving boxes and try to figure out where to put all our stuff.... But today, I'm getting the brushes wet!

Yeeeee Haw!

Monday, April 19, 2010

I would scare me.

At the end of Peterson Rd. in Sleeping Bear Dune National Lake Shore Park.

I've written often about my almost daily walks...When I'm up here in Honor, MI, I hardly ever see another person. Yesterday, as I was walking back to the house... a car passed me...and I suddenly became aware of what I looked like....

  • broken reading glasses (blue) with one lens out... perched on top of my not combed head
  • too small sunglasses on my face
  • paint covered too short black pants...snug in the WRONG places
  • one blue and one black sock (don't ask)
  • my shoes are actually pretty cool...but not cool enough to trump the odd socks.
  • paint covered bright golden yellow Iowa t-shirt
  • ipod in pants pocket
  • cell phone in pants pocket
  • kleenex in pants pocket
  • small camera in pants pocket
  • pen and small notebook in pants pocket
  • all that "in the pocket" activity did not make for a smooth silhouette
  • my husband's coat...(the coats I have up here are too heavy or too light)

"What not to Wear" would think it was a set-up. Understandably, I don't want to show a picture of this....And I probably won't change my work wardrobe any time too soon... but I've read that awareness is the first step toward change. :)

Unexpected Gifts....

Yesterday, I received a note from someone that I don't know. It was a gift. She wanted me to know that she liked my work, my website and my attitude. Wow. Everybody should receive a note like this...unexpected and so kind.

I have been known to do this sort of thing too...but not often enough. So, I'm vowing to send an unexpected card or email once a week...

Spread the love baby.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Walking to Lake Michigan....

Since I'm back in Honor, MI... I'm back at my almost daily walks to Lake Michigan. It's a 2.5 mile hike from the house to the lake... It's my favorite thing about being here. Good thoughts come from long walks.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Watercolor Warm-ups...

"Pink Tulips 3" (how original....sigh)
7 x 5
Watercolor and pencil on paper

I learned to do these small warm-up paintings at a Robert Burridge workshop. It's such a smart idea.... I have at least 3 going at once (usually more) so when the one I'm working on is wet and needs to dry...there is a dry one in the ready position... You can try out ideas that you wouldn't necessarily try on a larger sheet... a no risk method, that's very freeing.

On a completely different subject...

"Go right through for MSU, watch the points keep grow-ing....
Spartan teams are bound to win they're fighting with a vim!
Rah Rah Rah!"

Go Michigan State and Tom Izzo....
I can hardly wait to watch the game!

Monday, March 29, 2010

Midnight Tulips...

"Midnight Tulips"
11 x 15 Watercolor and ink on paper

The daffodils are all peeking up from the oak leaves in the woods. I hope it's the sort of spring that the daffodils and tulips last longer than a week.... Some springs come in too hot.

We are still basking in the glow of our Michigan State Spartan victory yesterday afternoon...

Unbelievably... the feed to the local cable station froze with 11 seconds left in the game.... We were scrambling around as much as the players were, trying to find the streaming video online. We saw the last second of the game ...but missed the more important 10 previous seconds... and the celebration after....Which is always my favorite part. :(... Oh well... wadda ya gonna do.
Go Green!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Level heads, where are you?

"Showing Restraint"
30 x 22 (36 x 28 framed)

I wish folks could show some restraint... I'm so tired of people shouting over each other and not listening. What happened to respectful dialog? Or even agreeing to disagree? I know that emotion can be a good thing, but not when it escalates bad behavior, builds walls, and stymies dialog.

Level heads....where are you?

And that's as close to political commentary that you'll get from me. aaaarrrrgggggh!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Kingsbury Auction Donation

"Flowers 4 You"
Acrylic ~ 7 x 5

This little painting is my donation to the Kingsbury School Auction on April 17th. Here's more information if you are interested in going...It's always a fun event!

Friday, March 5, 2010

Just Tulips...

"Just Tulips"
11 x 14 Watercolor

I felt the need to play with straight watercolor over the last couple of days. Watercolor is such a joyful medium. I really like the back runs and unpredictability. And the transparency is pretty cool too.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Up Periscope...

The one daffodil is stretching... What an over achiever.
I keep humming "Where is tall man, where is tall man... And he's yelling... "here I I am!" The others have since caught up to him, but it took them a few days.

We have our house up for sale again. We've had a lot of traffic... so between getting it ready to show... and then all the showings (4 in 5 days) I haven't really been able to paint. I'm thinking watercolor will be a bit easier to stay neat with. I tend to really splash about with acrylic.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Hoar Frost...

"Hoar Frost"
12 x 12
Acrylic on Acrylic paper

Tried to capture a bit of the feeling of the hoar frost from yesterday's walk... I have another attempt going... Might try to make the next one a bit more neutral... Just to see if I can!

thoughts I just gotta share...
I think the Canadian National Anthem is the best of all anthems. I love my country...but don't love our anthem... It's too hard to sing!

Monday, February 8, 2010

Frosty Morning....

Frosty Morning Walk on the Trail....

My friend Meg and I braved the bitter cold temps and were rewarded with a fairy land of frost. We could hardly talk for stopping and saying "oooooooh" and "aaaaaaaah". Photos never do this kind of scenery justice. The frozen nose hair was another added bonus.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Sunny Side Up...

"Sunny Side Up"
5.5 x 7.5 inches
mixed media

Again with the ladder imagery... can't imagine stopping.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

The Idea of Trees....

"The Idea of Trees"
6 x 6
Acrylic on Acrylic paper
$50 (unframed)

Finished a few of these small ones today... A few days of thought and rest does wonders for finishing up unresolved paintings. It sometimes surprises me though...the paintings that I thought had such promise, end up to be not so great... And the ones that I am not that excited about end up being better than I'd imagined....

I'm thinking that it might be because of expectations.

Paintings that I judge to have 'promise'... I unconsciously tighten up on.... And the paintings that are boring to begin with... with some bold maneuvers... can become the paintings I like best. Hmmmmmm

Had a lot more fun painting today.... Had the reds, yellows and violets going.
Think Valentines. :) I love making valentines.

Monday, January 25, 2010

prime the pump

warm up... 6 x 6...acrylic on acrylic paper

I'm finding it a bit tough to get back in to the swing of things here at home. I spent the morning putting things away in the studio and then just started slapping paint on 6 small squares of paper, with a limited palette.

One thing I've learned in my 13 plus years of painting is that you just have to jump in and do it...don't wait until you have that "perfect" idea. Just put your brush to paper and paint. That's what makes the ideas come...the doing it. I can already tell that tomorrows painting session will be better than today's. (For one thing I'll be sure to pick more uplifting colors!)

I'm priming the pump with these little painted doodles....and before too long...the ideas will be flowing! I count on it.

Monday, January 11, 2010

grief and gratitude

Mom...headed off to college in 1948

Mom and Dad in 1949

I'm familiar with the various stages of grief you supposedly go through......but that seems like such a clinical way to describe the emotional upheaval that takes place when someone you love dies. It's a surreal experience.... Very foggy.

I'm sitting here in the kitchen of the house that my mom and dad built... on Platte Lake in a gorgeous area of Northern Michigan... I'm trying to compose some sort of memorial to my mom, a handout of sorts to be available at her "celebration of life" party on the 17th... a challenging task.

I keep crying because of the loss I feel.... then laugh and smile at the memories as I sort through photos and memorabilia. What a roller coaster of emotion...

But the prevailing feeling I'm having is gratitude. A profound sense of gratitude, for having the parents that I had.

I'm a lucky lucky girl.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

A Funny Thing Happened on the way to the Funeral Home....

"It's a Spring Thing"

Many of you know
that I've been away from home since last April, helping out my mom and her husband of two years. She was diagnosed with Acute Mylogenous Leukemia, and then a week later, she suffered a major stroke....paralyzing her right side.

Adding into that mix, my husband had lost his job in March...we decided to put our house up for sale (real estate in the Detroit area...hahahaha)

My mom's husband suffered a mild stroke in the summer...

I had to put my 13 year old fuzzy companion, Ivan... to sleep in November....

The chemo quit working
for my mom in November, she declined and passed away on the 31st of December...

Good riddance 2009......

So.... my sister and I are driving to the funeral home, and my cell phone rings. It was the gentleman that had purchased one of my two paintings in the "Think Small 09" show at Lawrence Street Gallery. He had decided that he wanted the other painting in the show too.

I've decided that this is a sure sign that things will be looking up for me and mine!

I'm looking forward to an art and fun filled 2010!


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