Friday, June 23, 2017

April Workshop with Pendragons Take Aways

This blind contour drawing of a lily and some yellow flowers with added water color 
& suminagashi on top was my favorite piece from a work shop I attended in April.

The Pendragons is a calligraphy guild I belong to based in Kalamazoo Michigan. Every spring they bring in a well known artist to do a 2-3 day work shop for us. This year is was Sharon Zeugin.

So many ways to write or "create" a word. Lots of exercises where we stretched, 
bounced, or somehow manipulated words & phrases.

A favorite tid bit from the work shop for me was what Sharon referred to as her
  Rorschach rectangles.

 A small rectangle of stamp material, about 2 X 4 inches. Paint water color in lines accross the surface. Place on your paper. You never know what result you will get 
which is the fun & magic of it. 

Fun to break out lots of tools & colors to play with.

Off to my favorite framing store this week. Arnie's in Houghton Lake. There is a stash of art work I've had set aside to frame for quite some time. My two art pals & I are making a pilgrimage to get our stuff done. Then will come the fun of where to put it in the walls.

Monday, June 19, 2017

Embossing Addiction Continues

   I can't help myself. I enjoy turning on the light box, getting out the alphabet components and disappearing into embossing. Every word can be a bit different every time.


 Deciding the way they should all go together is the fun.

They can also be used as stencils. Much quicker but a different result.

A good view of the cut letters on the light box & the stylus I use to make the impression in the paper.
Canson Mi-Teintes with it's slight texture gives a nice result. Lots of color choices.

I plan to create even more letter forms to play with. Custom cards anyone? Just ask. 

Monday, June 12, 2017

Come to the Elk Rapids Art Event

 I'm happy to be a part of "Experience Art Rapids".

"Bursting at the Seams"

 A 15 day Art event happening all over the sweet little town of Elk Rapids Michigan. Click the Learn More button to see a full brochure of the venues, artists, & titles of all the pieces in the show.  

In the show are three pieces of mine seen above & below.

 "The Fiber of Her Being"

"Urban Sprawl" 

There is an artists meet & greet on June 21st, Wednesday, from 6 -9 PM. 
Anyone in the area I suggest you come check it out. Patterned after Art Prize in Grand Rapids, MI 
which has become a HUGE thing. This is small in comparison, but it may grow over time. 

I hope you get a chance to visit.

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Things I'm Into Right Now

More t shirt yarn. This stuff is fun to make. I have ideas about using it 
in conjunction with fabric vessels & fashion.

The process is fairly simple and satisfying.
 Need to go to Good Will or the consignment shops to find lots of colors to turn into yarn.

Last round of fabric boxes are done & in use.

I used the arm rest cover that came with our couch to make the one above. 
I never let any pieces of upholstery fabric go to waste.

On another note, I joined the Letter Writers Alliance

Seems like a lofty ambition to promote more letter writing. 

These gals look like fun. Plus I love their design sense.

The entire membership packet I received.

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Spring Musings

It's finally Spring, some days.  Still not shorts weather. 

Since the A to Z Challenge ended my posts have dropped off. 

The trip to Denver, work, and general activity have taken precedent.  
My plan going forward is to post 2 times per week with shorter ideas from the studio,
nature, as well as general artistic tid bits that cross my path.

 I have three pieces that will be in a 15 day long event in 
Elk Rapids June 10-25. Stay tuned for more on that.

While driving on the express way a couple weeks ago I noticed the perspective of the clouds.
Decided to do a quick sketch later to catch what I saw in my travel journal.

These are my May offerings for our ATC group in progress. 

 The finished product that just went out in the mail.

Scraps of hand painted fabric stitched, then a bit of stencil with acrylic paint added.

I've done several more embossed cards recently. More on that next up.

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Reflections on the April A to Z Challenge

Time for me to share my "Reflections" on the A to Z Challenge from 2017. 

It came at a very busy time for me, but when I set a goal for myself I seem to make it happen. 
The  Alphabet  is a great starting point. I always keep an ongoing list of thoughts & topics, 
even when there is no challenge to push me. I'm set for the next several years of the challenge. Made it through with no missed posts,enjoying it the entire month. 

Some folks didn't like the fact there was no list of participants this year. I was fine with the new arrangement.  I created a copy of the link we needed to share our posts on the Blogging from A to Z site in a word document. It was easy to share my post each day by copying & pasting while I had my post up in another window.  I received many more comments this year as opposed to last. I also worked at commenting on more blogs myself. It was fairly easy to find other participants at the A to Z site linked above. Posting to Facebook is a great way to generate more viewers in my experience.

Some of my favorites from this year:

Mail Adventures    Lots of fun artsy envelopes.

Envelope 100   Another snail mail inspired blog. 

My Virtual Vineyard   One woman's daily musings. 

Black and White  Great images of print makers work.

Reel Focus  The theme was food in film. Fun posts!

My Life in Retirement   As I retired during April I had to see what this gal had to say. Theme: travel.

Sara C. Snider   Magical & Medicinal Herbs, her theme, so interesting & well done.

 There were many more.  My hat is off to all of you who took this on & made it all the way through.

During the challenge the most popular 3 posts of mine were:

Oblique Strategies

Lettering Arts


My most popular post of all time is Gorgeous Pacific North West.

I arrived back home a few days ago from a trip to Denver with college room mates.
 The Denver Botanical Gardens were wonderful. They have several Alexander Calder works on loan from the Smithsonian. The 2 images above are different views of the same piece.
Cause for "reflection".

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Inspiration Everywhere

I cut up a couple catalogs for color, sketching, & shape inspiration. 
They are going in my journal.

May is an Artist Trading card month.  Pulled out some ideas & started to ply with shapes

The thought is to do mini fabric collages. Good way to use the scrap box. 
I find these mini pieces of art can generate lots of ideas to be used in other larger projects.

At a friends for an art play date I looked again at a sweet
 little mobile she has hanging in her kitchen.  

Inspiration everywhere indeed.
What place or activity generates the most inspiration for you?

Sunday, May 7, 2017

Spring In & Out of the Studio

My husband has made a big improvement to our deck. It's been expanded and a new railing almost done that opens it up to the swath of woods out back. Sigh. Love it!

All that's left is to mount the wood top rail & run horizontal wires through the posts. 

We wait so long for Spring in Northern Michigan. You want to soak up every ray of sun you can when the weather warms. 

On to the studio. More fabric painting & boxes. 

First step getting layers of color & design on the canvas. 

Cutting the painted fabric for sewing.


This is my approach now with these boxes.
 Sew  a contrasting fabric around the stiff Pelon so the edges are fully covered.

Then sew the cover fabric to the covered Pelon.

I'm off on a short trip with girlfriends to Denver. 
Hoping to post inspiration I find in my travels.

Sunday, April 30, 2017

Zester A to Z Challenge

 Z is for Zest

My entire A to Z challenge could be about food. Maybe a year in the future. 
In the meantime, I see food & cooking as a big part of my creative life.
 Not a bad way to end the challenge.

The aroma in the kitchen when zest hits the heat in a pan, heaven.

 Current favorite recipes with lemon zest:

 Shrimp with Pesto & Lemon Zest

Tuna casserole

I made it! A to Z  2017. Can I have my survivor badge now? 
See you next year. Hope you visit before then as well. 
It's been a pleasure cruising around to see what others are up to.