Just finished this little piece, called, Hopeful*. I like how the little bird on the fence is looking up at the tail feathers of the bird in the corner- like he's waiting for his turn to take flight...it feels hopeful. I'm sending this over to Cathy Nichols for Found Art Friday. The theme this month was "Everything's Blooming". Even though that's far from the truth in Wisconsin at the moment, I know that spring is right around the corner, so it was nice to have something bright and sunny to think about as I worked. I always think of spring as nature's dress-up party- with all of the colors of the first buds and blooms bringing us out of the grey dreariness of late winter. That's what made me put the little collar on this bird- just needed to dress him up a little. (I don't know why, but I feel like it's a him- even with a little orange ruffle)

Anyway- I really appreciate Cathy hosting Found Art Friday...sometimes it's so busy around here I need an extra motivator, and a fun deadline was just what worked this month. I also can't wait to see what everyone else posts tomorrow!

(* I edited this to change the name of the piece from "Spring is in the Air" to "Hopeful". You'll find that titles are always tough for me to settle on. In this case, I ended up feeling that "Hopeful" just said it all about that little bird.)


little love

Valentine's Day seemed to me like a good excuse for making some cookies. My mom always turned Valentine's Day into a fun day- we'd come down to find the breakfast table decorated, a little surprise at our seat and red food coloring in the milk for our cereal! Later this evolved to college care packages filled with anything and everything she could find that was red- gum, toothbrushes, socks, snacks, etc. So that's the tone I like to take on this particular holiday. I don't load it up with expectations of grand declarations of love- I just use it as an excuse to pink and red surprises into the day.


much to say about nothing

I've been wondering what I'm supposed to post about when I don't have any new work finished up and ready to share? I've been super busy, but due to the new (to us) house, the small kids, the dog, the snow... a lot of my creative energy has been directed toward painting the kitchen, stripping wallpaper in the bedroom and thinking through Bakugon-themed birthday party plans for my almost-5-year-old. Uncreative energy has been going toward shoveling. I'd be happy to share all of that if I thought anyone was interested, but feel like I'm "supposed" to have art to post.

Luckily, this piece I ordered from the amazingly talented Ashley Goldberg arrived today:

Other than being excited to have something to post about, I'm totally in love with the colors, the texture, the quirky houses. It made my day! (please note that the original image is cropped in this photo)

I know that one of the things that drew me to this piece is that I've used simple house images in my own work for ages. Every time I think I need to branch out and find a different subjet, I just can't find anything that says what I want to say like a house does. To me they can speak of family, safety, shelter, community, tenderness...but also sometimes secrecy, isolation and obligation. I wonder if I'll ever find a way to say so many things with a different image?

I love the way these other artists have used the image of the house...such a broad range of interpretations:

Sarah Ahearn is one of my all time favorites- the little houses sprinkled around in many of her mixed media paintings feel so sentimental.
Lucy Summers creates the most wonderful, intricate designs which she then uses to print her own gorgeous fabrics.
Heather Kirtland is someone whose work I just discovered, and I love her use of encaustics to create floaty, ethereal houses.
I've also just discovered Lily Stockman's work, and am completely blown away by her "Homestead" series. Breathtaking...so far out of my realm of ability, but inspiring me anyway. After visiting her site, I've been working on these:

A little experiment, I guess. I'm giving a go at working on a panel instead of paper, and more of a painterly approach to image making, over the collage-driven pieces I've been doing for a while. I'm nowhere near as comfortable with them as with some of my other work, but it's a good time for me to be playing around, as I have no shows booked until June- there's nothing to be making art "for", other than for the sake of exploration, I guess.

So as it turns out, I guess I did have something to say...but be warned...next post really might be all about a Bakugon themed 5-year-old birthday party!



Well, I got back into my studio today and it felt really nice. I have built myself a schedule that leaves Monday and Tuesday mornings open for studio time, so I'm going to try to get back to honoring that. I finished up this piece- called Together. I'm pretty happy with it...I think I'll use the sewing machine to mount it as a finishing touch before framing it.

I definitely need to learn a little more about photographing my work...I'm ready to start submitting pieces for potential shows etc., and I need to figure out how to capture the colors and details more accurately. Anyone have any suggestions?