Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Cigar Box Wednesday

This one's full of transparencies. Some purchased, some found in magazines or old books. Some from scrapbook stores, some from flea markets.

And as we all know the perfect thing when
we want just one more layer!

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Autumn Draws In

Down a leaf strewn lane as autumn begins
to give way to the coming winter.

A couple of shots from Sebastopol.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Present - Before

My daughter asked for an interesting Christmas present this year. She wants a sheep skull. Since she's the one who's into spinning and weaving and dreams of having a small sheep farm someday, this makes sense.

But the cool thing is, she wants me to "steampunk" it. Add gears and goggles and such. It arrived from the on-line skull store (yes there are such places!) a few days ago and these are the before pix. After the holiday I'll show you what I will have done to it. (And let you know what she thinks of it too.)

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Life on a Different Coast - Massachusetts

Resting boats, on a lazy Sunday morning, at the tip of Cape Cod in Provincetown,Massachusetts. This is where the pilgrims first landed, before they sailed on to Plymouth.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Cemetery Saturday

I thought this Thanksgiving Saturday
would be the perfect time to visit Burial Hill,
the Pilgrim Cemetery in Plymouth, Massachusetts.

Famous graves include William Bradford,
governor of the Plymouth Colony,

John Howland, Mayflower passenger.

This rise is the site of the first fort built by the pilgrims.

photos courtesy of Wikipedia

Friday, November 25, 2011

From the Holiday Bookshelf

Every year I either read or listen (a truly wonderful audiobook read by Celeste Holm) to this charming and poignant story of Truman Capote's childhood. The writing is masterful, the story will warm your heart, make you laugh, and bring a tear to your eye. It is much more than a tale of a young boy, growing up during the harsh years of the depression in the deep south. A deeper thread of friendship and trust is present, that stays with the reader long after the final bite of stuffing is gone and the fragrance of gravy has blown away on the last winds of autumn.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving

An early 1900's postcard from my grandmother.
Wishing a day of comfort and thankfulness for all.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Cigar Box Wednesday

Not cigar boxes this week, but cigar labels.
Tiny, beautiful works of art.

From Winston Churchill to U.S. Grant to a bit of cheesecake,
these masterpieces of lithography have it all.

A search of eBay, Etsy or just Google and
you'll find more than you can imagine.

photos courtesy of 1.) 2.) 3.)

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Turkish Delight

Our dear friend Franny ( she and Margot have known each other since Kindergarten!) is a world traveler extraordinaire - her latest trip took her to Istanbul. When I found out she was going I was struck by the ever present force of synchronicity - I've been planning for awhile now to do a vicarious travel journal of Istanbul and have been reading travel books and novels set there as a prelim to actually starting work on the journal.

I asked Franny if she'd mind picking up a bit of ephemera while there and she jumped at the chance, even getting her travel companions to help her out.

Old coins, bottle caps, museum and ferry tickets, newspapers, postcards, stamps - a feast of delicious Turkish ephemera. Thanks Franny - I can't wait to start recording my "arm-chair" travel in this new journal!

Monday, November 21, 2011

Me and Mouse

I've never considered myself a pet person, even though I've had pets almost all my life. And homesteading for 18 years in east San Luis Obispo county, raising our own food, animals were a fact of life, rather than pampered pets. But now, at almost 60, I've fallen in love with my kitty. His name is Mouse (he was much smaller when we got him!) and he's a gigantic ball of fluffy black fur, with a darling bob-tail and liquid green eyes and I am totally smitten. I promise this won't turn into a blog about my cat - but just this once I had to share him with you.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Life on a Different Coast - Washington

The beach at Fort Warden,
Port Townsend, Washington.
Cold water, snowy mountains.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Cemetery Saturday

More shots from Springfield National Cemetery in Missouri,

taken by my daughter Bronwyn.

Gorgeous fall colour against the green grass,

white sentinels marching eternally forward.

Friday, November 18, 2011

From the Bookshelf

Another winner from Rice Freeman-Zachary, this one takes us around the country to visit a variety of art retreats. From Port Townsend, Washington to Hampton, Virginia, from Art Fest to Art 'n' Soul, big to small - this is the place to look if you want the low-down on what's out there. Rice chronicles a year of attending different retreats and tells how they change not only your art but your life as well. In the same smaller square format as her first two books, this one is a delightful addition to any mixed media library.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

221 B Baker St.

221 B Baker Street 8x10"

My daughter has a good friend who is crazy about the new Sherlock Holmes series on BBC. She asked if I could do a steampunk piece using the actors from the series, so she could surprise her friend with it at Christmas.

Here's the result - I used a shot of Sherlock and Watson in front of their door with that famous address. The photo was coloured but I turned it sepia and printed it out on parchment paper. Copper acrylic is stenciled on top. Various steampunk elements are attached with wire and heavy gel medium and include gears, a pen nib, rusty paper clips, a magnifying glass, a violin bridge and a wall of HO bricks along the bottom.

If you haven't seen the series - check it out. A very ingenious mix of Victorian and modern Technology, and you can't get more steampunk than that!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Cigar Box Wednesday

When is a cigar box not a cigar box? When it's a decorative tin. This one holds watch faces and watches.

Gathered from flea markets, Etsy, eBay, thrift stores,
garage sales and enabling friends.

Nothing seems to say Steampunk quite as well!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

It's Time for Mahjong!

Mahjong Time 8x8"

A holiday show is coming up at Cambria Allied Arts in December. They've asked us to do 8x8" pieces, so they can load up the gallery walls. The one above features vintage Baklite tiles, various sized Asian coins and vintage ivory Mahjong counters. These are wired on and/or adhered with heavy gel medium. The surface of the canvas is covered with fabric that was run through the printer and sports a collage of Mahjong cards.

Mahjong Melange 8x8"

The other two are 6x6" pieces that I have converted to 8x8". Concerto now rests on an 8x8" canvas that has been collaged with sheet music, and Mahjong Melange sits atop printed fabric that shows Mahjong tiles.

Concerto for Viola & Bassoon 8x8"

I used tacks, screw fasteners, and heavy gel medium to attach the smaller canvases to the new 8x8" surfaces. These will all be available at Cambria Center for the Arts Gallery starting Dec. 1.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Art Girlz in the Country

After taking a couple of months off (busy, busy, busy!) the Art Girlz are ready to sip some lattes and gab up a storm. We're meeting today at Debra's house, off the beaten track in the Templeton Hills. She and her husband Mark designed and built the house when they moved to San Luis Obispo County over 20 years ago. It's beautiful, high on a hill and surrounded with fields of lavender.

We have a lot to talk about today, our various shows and workshops from October and our marketing plans for the coming year.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Life on the Coast

Carmel Beach, late fall, early evening.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Cemetery Saturday

My daughter Bronwyn sent these shots

from the Springfield National Cemetery
in Springfield Missouri.

Her old apartment looked out over the graveyard

and she often went walking there.

Friday, November 11, 2011

The 11th Hour of the 11th Day of the 11th Month

Nearly a hundred years have passed
since this "war to end all wars".
Armistice Day, now Veterans' Day, for
remembrance and to thank those who have
given the ultimate sacrifice to keep us safe.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

A Box of Leftovers

There is a box that sits next to my art table.
I throw stuff into it when I'm through with a project,

or things that have somehow ended up on the table,

or those wonderful scraps that are too cool to file away.

I love to go through it now and then
and pull out inspirational bits and bobs.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Cigar Box Wednesday

When is a cigar box not a cigar box? When it's a small decorative box that holds beautiful wide satin ribbon.

These are from various fabric stores and an exquisite paper store in the Pearl Arts District in Portland.

Fun to use in journals and collage and glorious
just to run through your fingers!