Tuesday, October 27, 2009

The Last Picture Show

My last outdoor show for the year is hereby over. Whew. What a year this has been. From frigid May to wet and muddy October, I feel like I have been through it all. I am exhausted, yet excited to get going on new work. I have ideas, oh how I have ideas!

Anyway, the Memphis show was a good one for me. In addition to seeing sunshine for two days straight (what a treat!), I also sold one of my 40x40 paintings to a delightful couple. We had a slight issue when it wouldn't fit in their car (ahem) but my brother helped me get that figured out and all ended up ok.

Lots of St. Louis artists at this show and it was fun to catch up with folks I hadn't seen for awhile. Even sat down and shared a meal with friends one morning. I had Sweet Potato pancakes which were totally yum yum and I am going to try to figure out how to make them.

I thought you might enjoy seeing websites of some of the talent from our fine city - we have such an abundance of outstanding artists:

Sharon Spillar
Jeane Vogel
Sarah Giannoble
William LaChance

Monday, October 26, 2009

Arachnophobia anyone?

Very interesting story......not sure I would want to be one of the people who harnesses the spiders though.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Whoopie for Carrot Cake Pies

Wednesday is Hump day and we celebrate each week by having dinner with John's daughter and her family. We bring the food and have a mid-week feast that allows us a chance to see our grandkids and enjoy some quality time. We've been doing this for, geez, I can't even remember how long now, but its a tradition we all like.

Today I was out gathering ingredients for a Mexican feast, Carne Asada and Pollo Asada from TJ's plus a bunch of other things. I saw a package of Whoopie pies and they looked so delicious, yet I was deterred by the $4.99 price for just 6 of them. I knew that cake mixes were on sale for $1 at another store.......so, my adventure began.

Having never used a cake mix to bake cookies, I first called my friend Karyl because she has an encyclopedic knowledge of baking stuff. I caught her running errands (so she didn't have recipes at hand) but she said it was definitely do-able and suggested I would find recipes on Google. There were only 1,531,000 of them.....ahem.

So this is what I did:
Take 1 Carrot Cake mix (or the Spice cake mix I think would also be good). Add 1/3 cup oil and 2 eggs, using a hand mixer cause its kinda thick. Then add whatever you want - I added dried cranberries, raisins, shredded carrots, chopped walnuts and chocolate chips. I also added a little canned pumpkin, maybe 1/3 cup or something cause I was worried about moisture.
Bake at 350 for 12 minutes. Cool in the pan then move to a rack. Once they are completely cool, spread Cream Cheese frosting (also on sale today) between 2 cookies. Use tons of icing so it gushes out when you take a bite. I think that's the point, don't you?

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

River rock mania

This is my recently decorated guest bathroom. I think I should be on HGTV with this one as I did the entire room for less than $250. First I painted our fugly vanity. I used Martha Stewart French Bulldog (Valspar from Lowe's) - just a divine black that is oh-so-pretty.....same one I used on our kitchen cabinets. The walls are a neutral mid range taupe. New faucet was the biggest expense and my 'splurge' was the Marimekko shower curtain. The rug (not shown) is a fun retro look - thick fake FUR!! In black of course. Bare feet required.

I painted the rocks yesterday. Inconveniently, our electricity went out so I was standing on a ladder while also holding a battery powered lantern - a site to behold. I mixed a variety of colors using the wall color, the black and white. It was all free form as I wanted the rocks to dance across the wall with no rhyme or reason. Lots of empty spots because I didn't want it to look like a pattern. Now we are ready for our guests!!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Kentuck is not in Kentucky

Northport, AL is the place to be this weekend. If you're in the area, come on out to see me at the Kentuck Festival of the Arts. The coolest Outsider and Folk art you can find. Not to mention terrific music.
I'll be the artist trying not to spend more than I make......ahem......

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

More Awakening

Love this hand shot, as the crowd swarmed around the sculpture.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Texture mania with Apoxie Clay

I am all about texture lately and today I started experiments with this product that I picked up at Valley Ridge. This is a neat little clay.....it comes in 2 parts and you take an equal amount of each part and rub it together, mixing thoroughly (I wore gloves). You can then shape it or carve it or do whatever. You have 2-3 hours to work with it. I manipulated mine into some shapes and then stuck it on some blank Claybord.

It will dry on its own, no heat or anything needed. And I believe (or hope) it will remain stuck to my Claybord. I had fun building up more texture than usual. The clay stays pliable longer than acrylic products and I love the fact I can shape it in my hand cause that really isn't possible with any of the molding pastes I normally us. I have tried using using tissue paper which I gunked up with gel medium in order to make it pliable but I didn't have as much control as I might have liked. I think I am going to like this much better. I will see how it takes the paint and post more photos once I finish these pieces.

Monday, October 12, 2009

The Awakening

This past weekend, John and I attended the unveiling of Chesterfield's newest public sculpture, The Awakening. It was a big event beautifully handled by the staff of Chesterfield Arts and also by the community.

For some inexplicable reason, I was initially a little lukewarm about the project, however, after hearing artist Seward Johnson talk about his work, I started getting really excited. I love his commitment to public art - the thought that people from all walks of life be able to experience and enjoy art - and that they connect and relate in new ways. He has such lofty goals, but I watched this exact thing happen as the sculpture was unveiled. Children clamored over it, people posed, boundaries were simply erased. Personally, I was WOW-ed. What an amazing impact, geez, I could only dream that I would touch people in such a way.

I was also quite intrigued that he was first a painter before moving into 3 dimensional work. This is what he and I were talking about in this great picture taken by my friend Bud Hirsch. Isn't it cool how you can see part of the sculpture above our heads?

I snapped tons of photos myself, of The Awakening and also of the other Johnson sculptures around Chesterfield. I am making a piece to be exhibited at Chesterfield Arts. Obviously I will update you with photos once I am finished. In the meantime, click on over to Chesterfield Art's site to see the full sculpture including shots of delivery and installation. Way cool, I am glad it is here and thrilled to have been part of the event.

Friday, October 09, 2009

Happy Anniversary

To my dear sweetie, my solid as a rock, nearly too good to be true best friend......thank goodness I got lucky and met this man. Sixteen years of marriage and our life together just gets better and better. I love you, John.

(pic taken by Bud Hirsch last year on our 15th)

Thursday, October 08, 2009

Hyde Park Recap

My show season is winding down with only two more to go. I am actually off this weekend, but last Sunday was the Hyde Park show in Cincinnati. John and I went together and that felt nearly like a vacation for me since I have put my tent up by myself so many times this year. Geez did I ever feel spoiled!

It was a lovely weekend all around. We arrived in Cincinnati on Thursday and I dropped off projects at North Light, then delivered product to Indigenous, then did the show. All while hanging out with my Mom and Dad. We had good quality time which was delightful; many laughs were had by all.

I met fellow blogger Rhonda Carpenter when she and hubby Jerry came to see me at the show. They are both oh-so-nice, the kind of folks I would want to hang out with if we all lived in the same city. Anyhoo, thanks to Jerry for snapping a nice shot of my new blue/green work and also this good picture of me and Rhonda together. I hope to cross paths with her again some day.

Wednesday, October 07, 2009

Blame Mary Ann Moss

I love to take classes. Unfortunately, with my show and teaching schedule, it is hard. Until I heard about Internet classes. And let me tell ya, the chance to take a class on your own terms in your own house.......well, it just rocks.

I signed up for a Stencil class by Mary Ann Moss. I have been reading her blog for awhile now and enjoy the work she does with stencils. I am no stranger to stencils myself, but I wanted to explore more and see how Mary Ann does it. My oh my was her class ever worthwhile. If you are even remotely interested in stencil work, you should definitely sign up the next time she offers it.

This book was the first project I made in her class, a little cardboard portfolio. I love the simplicity of it, my kind of binding - duct tape, yeah! The cats appear to enjoy it as well. As I progressed through the lessons, I kept thinking of more and more things I could do with paint and stencils and one thing led to another which is how the mirrors came about. And that is also how I got a sore throat from doing too much non-stop spraying indoors without the proper equipment (bad idea, she says smacking self in head). Hence, John asked our son in law to build me a baby spray booth in the basement. It has a kick butt exhaust fan so I can spray whenever I want without any ill effects. I also now wear a respirator, having learned my lesson the hard way.

And I blame (or maybe that is thank) Mary Ann Moss for sparking a new obsession.

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

Can a girl live on Popcorn?

When I was at Valley Ridge, all the peeps kept talking about popcorn they buy from a shop in the area. I didn't pay much attention and didn't even think a whole lot about it cause I like popcorn, but it's not like I'm obsessed with it or anything.
Ahem. Strike that.
When I left VR, my car inexplicably drove right there.......to the RR 1 Popcorn store. Naturally I had to taste all the flavors and got a small bag to eat in the car. I also bought buckets and tins to dispense as hostess gifts to folks housing me on my journey to Squam.
Needless to say, by the time I got home, all the popcorn was gone and I was left with a big ole hankering for a tub of RC Snakle, that's the one that is sweet popcorn & cranberries, smothered in white choclate. Nirvana.
Thank goodness I was able to order it. So now I have a tub of my own (snort, snort) in the fridge as Beth suggested - it is even better cold, if you can imagine.
I am having it for breakfast this morning. Delish with coffee, I might add.