Saturday, April 30, 2011

Cemetery Saturday

These lovely pictures were shot by my daughter Jenny
several months ago.

She took her camera and spent some time at the cemetery
in San Luis Obispo.

You can see by these last two shots that she's her mother's daughter.

The distressed, the broken, the aged and worn.

Friday, April 29, 2011

From the Bookshelf

This book, an oldie but goodie, was one of my score's from Powell's used books, I picked it up for a song. Valuable for several reasons- it was one of the first, if not the first, of the well-known artists' collaborations, it was the first time Lynne Perrella joined a collaboration, leading to True Colors and Alphabetica among many others, and it was the first time a book was written about a collaboration. Full to the bursting with eye candy, journal excerpts, and commentary from all the artists, it is interesting reading for any mixed media type. I am not a doll maker and didn't even play with dolls much as a child ( more interested in my cowboy hat and six-shooters) but I loved reading about the collaboration process and was fascinated by the many different and diverse forms the dolls took. A very enjoyable book.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Post to Paper

More graffiti from the telephone and light poles in Portland.

I printed these out on card stock, like the leaves from last week.

And voila! Another set of very cool, totally original papers

to use in art journals, altered books, cards, anywhere!

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Cigar Box Wednesday

Chain, chain, chain! From delicate necklace chain to a bike chain and everything in-between. Gathered here, there and everywhere.

The best for steampunk projects.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

BIG cats


Over the weekend Margot, Destiny and I went to the Exotic Feline Breeding Compound near Lancaster. A few times a year they have "twilight tours", that start at 5:00 PM and run through the evening hours, when the cats are more lively than during the day.


They have quite an impressive group of cats, including tigers, snow leopards and jaguars.


Before the tour we stopped at The Antique Barn. They have a huge rubbish pile behind the store and if you wear boots, bring a stick and are willing to watch out for rattlesnakes, there are some fine bargains to be found there.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Any Comments?

Due to popular demand, well, 5 or 6 people telling me it’s a good idea, I will now be answering comments in the comment section rather than sending e-mails. These 5 or 6 people, and you know who you are) say that blog readers like to see what the blog host has to say and that sometimes people like to then comment on the comments. And it answers the question of what to do when a commenter doesn’t have an easily found e-mail address. So, leave a comment on this or any future post and I will comment on your comment rather than e-mailing you. Oh, the picture? Always more fun to comment over a couple of lattes!

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Life on the Coast

Now that spring has sprung these little guys are ubiquitous on my early morning walks on the boardwalk at Moonstone Beach in Cambria. California ground squirrels - bad for the cattle ranchers, but fun to watch.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Cemetary Saturday

More shots from the Columbia Pioneer Cemetery in Portland.

Graves of civil war veterans

Lives cut short

And lives still being lived.

Friday, April 22, 2011

From the Bookshelf

Those of you who know me are undoubtedly very surprised to see this on my blog. I make no secret of the fact that I am not a fan of the "young women with their heads tilted to the side". It seems to be all one sees in certain mixed media magazines in the last couple of years. Sort of the new version of the "wings and dunce caps" that were so prevalent in the past.

That being said I have to admit I really enjoyed this book. Kelly Rae has a wonderful story to tell; of her life, her art and how she turned her circumstances around. Lots of great inspiration in her writing, and loads of wonderful techniques - by Kelly and her guest artists. Even if you, like me, aren't a tilted head fan - this is a volume worth looking in to.

It is sometimes very good to end up liking something you thought you wouldn't. In this case, I'm delighted to stand corrected.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

From Plant to Paper

These are pictures I took of foliage in a flower arrangement at the library. I had a co-worker hold a piece of card stock behind to give a plain background.

I was so tickled with the way they turned out (love the shadows) that I printed them out on grey card stock and plan to use them for background papers in art journals.

Just another example of how much I'm loving my new camera!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Cigar Box Wednesday

English horse brasses. Long ago these graced the harnesses of coach and waggon horses. Some of these are vintage, some repros. Many I found in England on our 2006 trip, a few on eBay and a couple in a local thrift store.

The three above are from Cornwall - all places we visited. I think they'd look very impressive on a journal cover or provide the finishing touch to an assemblage.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Four Seasons, Five Senses, One Extraordinary Experience

The Japanese Garden in Washington Park in Portland
is a magic place.

We went in the early morning, there was a light mist and wispy fog that seemed the perfect atmosphere for the delicate plantings and winding stone paths.

Mosses grew everywhere, on rocks and trees and covering the ground.

Beautiful sculptures appeared by still pools.

Our final stop was their lovely gift shop where I picked up these delightful metal bird nests complete with brightly coloured nesters.

Monday, April 18, 2011

1, 2, 4?

These oh-so-cool painted metal numbers were on the doors of the rooms at the guest house we stayed at in Portland on our recent trip.

There were six rooms, each with one of these beauties on the door. Number 4 below is my favourite, love that rusty cream colour.

You will notice however that number 3 and number 6 are missing - no matter how hard I tried I couldn't get a good picture of either of them, too dark, too much flashback, etc.

So I settled for four out of six. I think I showed great restraint - they are still there in the guest house and not hanging up on my wall here at home!

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Life on the Coast

California Spring - lupine and golden poppies.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Cemetery Saturday - The Lighter Side

My sister sent me these shots from around the web of
"not so grave" burial spots.

They reflect hobbies, favourite pastimes,

tributes to professions,

and use of a beloved game to really
spell out the departed's attributes.

Friday, April 15, 2011

From the Bookshelf

I picked this up on my trip to Powell's. I had heard a lot about it and was eager to see what it had to offer. I love Elsebeth and Christine's commentary, the ideas and techniques (though limited) are quite good and useful, but the artwork itself is not up to the written portions of the book. The authors have confined themselves to arranging ephemera on a background, which certainly has its place in collage, but is just one small part of what can be done. That said, I do feel it is valuable for the lists and suggestions of where to acquire materials, tools, types of paint etc. For those just getting started I think this would be an ideal beginning volume with the plan to move on to other, more advanced books later.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

True to Form

My friend Destiny gave me this old 1960's Sears dressform. Not exactly a turn of the (last) century wood and cloth French affair - but still pretty cool! She now lives in the studio in front of the library card catalog.

I "dressed" it up with a ruffley lacy ecru blouse (that never fit), two beautiful necklaces by my good Friend Debra Jurey and letterpress circles from Wendy Addison spelling out my name.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Cigar Box Wednesday

It's all so random! A box filled with bits and bobs, this and that, and just plain stuff. I reach in here when I need a little something to fill a corner or a spot in a journal, an assemblage or a collage.

Still not sure how the spoon got in there!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Garage Sale Score

Every year Morro Bay has a City-Wide Garage Sale Weekend. Since I work on Saturdays, I don't get first crack, but Sunday found me out and about and I did find a few goodies.

By far the biggest score , this ring of rusty vintage keys complete with a numbered owner's disc.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Peeps & Marketing

Chris of Parabolic Muse and her lovely wife came up to visit over the weekend, and dropped by the opening of my show - because I'm one of her "peeps".

photo courtesy of

The next day we dined at my favourite eatery Taco Temple (Mexican food to die for and just a short walk away!) I showered her with Peeps (how could I not?) and a big C!

Margot, Destiny, Debra and I are having our second Art Marketing get-to-together today, this time in Paso Robles, where we'll tour Studios on the Park and afterward have a delicious brunch and compare notes on what we all accomplished marketing-wise in the last month.

My part was easy as I spent the month getting ready for my show, my goal for the next month is to clean up the studios - both the one in the great room and the even messier one in the garage. Wish me luck!