Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Big Kisses

I have been remiss in telling you all how much your comments mean to me. Thank you from the bottom of my heart. It really makes the blogging meaningful to know that you, who I adore, read and think on what I write and paint.

Great big kisses to you all.

Loving Summer in Washington

I am loving the weather. It's not too hot. It's not too cool. It's just right. Mama Bear is happy.

My cousin was up from Los Angeles with her partner last week. It was the hottest day of the year here, and they were thankful for the cool temperatures. Since I was definitely glowing, I wondered how she could wear a sweater when I wanted to run in the sprinklers. It seems it was 104º in L.A. when they left. In my world, that is too hot for a hot tub much less a city.

Above is another pastel. I call it Moonshine Moonshadows. Does anyone know where the name comes from? I like the way the trees seem to become animated and speak in the darkness. A couple of them become bunnies when the lights go out. They really do carry on.

What's that you say? The color is weird? The Late Odd Bob Ross says that we make our world and it can be anything we want it to be. Now that's what I like!

Later Gators

Monday, May 26, 2008

Memorial Day

I took this picture on the national mall in Washington DC last summer. This one was fom the World War II Memorial. It speaks what I am feeling today.

I hadn't been to DC since I was a child. The war memorials have been added in my absence. It is hard to speak when standing in one of them. While you stand in thought, old men with tears in thier eyes relive things people should never see.

I grew up an army brat. The threat of the loss of freedom was always on the top of our minds. The neighborhood I lived in had quite a few bomb shelters. I wonder what they are used for now? Canning? I hope they are full of beautiful peaches, pears, applesauce, pickles, and other pretty fruits and vegetables all lined up in gleaming glass jars just waiting to be opened by the family that worked hard to put them there..

Thank you to all who fought and all who died to keep us free.

Sunday, May 25, 2008


Oh what a beautiful morning!!! Oh what a beautiful day!!!

The energy sent out in the last post has worked. I will let you all know in due time when and where we can get together.
In the meantime, here is a painting of a little shack down the lake from me. It's not encaustic. It's pastel. Hmmmmmmm..should I cover it with wax? I think not.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Artists Community

Many times in my life I sat and pondered how I, of all people, have been so fortunate.
When I was a very young, unworldly, naïve, ten year old child, I went so far as to wonder how I was not only blonde and pretty, but a free American, as opposed to communist. I know, I know, that is as silly as a person can get, but I thought it. As I walked down the alley on the way home from school, picking fruit from the overhanging trees I decided that I could survive well on the fruits that my life handed me.
As a teenager, standing with my thumb out, on Topanga Canyon, I thought of how lucky I was to have a school that was right on the road to the beach. It never entered my mind that a school, right across the street from one of the world’s greatest malls, and just through the canyon to some of the most beautiful beaches in the world, could not necessarily be a good thing. I was, after all, ditching school to go to that beach after meeting up with like minded teens at the mall.
Today, I wonder how I have been so fortunate to have such a wonderful group of artist friends that I can spend time and share with.
A group of us have been meeting monthly for two or three years at the studio of Patricia Seggebruch in Snohomish. We brought our own lunch and potluck dinner, and spent the day talking and comparing notes. As artists we tend to spend an enormous amount of time alone, listening only to the direction of our mind and creative muse. The time spent with others is precious because we not only are able to share what we are doing in our work, we get to share the feelings, emotions, and struggles as artists trying to get our work out into the public eye, and more importantly, sell it.
Being an artist takes guts and I have am so thankful that I have one gutsy group of artist friends. We work, eat, and chat endlessly. We show each other what we are doing in the safety of the group where we are not laying open our souls to strangers. That is what it feels like with strangers. It feels like we are laying our hearts open to someone who may not appreciate it. Our skills, our emotions, our ideas are all on that substrate and we risk rejection when we put it out there.
We talk about how to get out there and sell ourselves. We get ideas on venues looking for artwork. We tell each other if there are teaching jobs available to contribute to the coffers at home while we work to sell art.
In that group we have been through, divorce, depression, loss, business openings, celebration, child problems, and soon a new baby. We’ve grown as people and as artists to what we are today. I am so thankful to have had that. I have collected their work so that I can be reminded of them each and every day.
That is why it is so important for me to find a place where we can continue to meet monthly and bask in each others strengths. I fear the threat of loss. We no longer have the meeting place and I fear the loss of the group. It takes a lot of space for artists to spread out and work.
I count my blessings and celebrate what we have and if any of you have any ideas on how we’ll keep it I’d like to hear them. No matter what is happening in my life, I will find the time to spend with the women I so love.
Geeze, now who’d think a person could feel vulnerable blogging? I am just pushing the button anyways.
To bring you up a bit I’ll leave you with a few of my paintings. They aren’t new ones but I still like them. All three are encaustic.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Missing in Action

Ha! You thought I wouldn't return! Well, here I am and I have every intention of blogging regularly.

Spring has come to us, and with the warm weather comes the energy to move around and get a few things done. I have been sitting since the rains started last fall.

First, I must tell you that Artfest was a wonderful treat for me. I'll make sure I send in my check the day the sign-ups are available this year. I loved taking the classes, spending time with old friends and new friends, and having wonderful meals cooked for me, all in the beautiful surroundings of Port Townsend. It seemed like years since I had been there. We sat on the beach one evening and just breathed in the air, far away from the worries of home and business.

My first class was Assemblage with Annie Lockart, A sweeter woman cannot be found. Everyone in the class had brought boxes of "special stuff" to add to thier work. I took pictures of the tables full of good junk so that I could prove to the DH that I am not the only person who walks with her head to the ground and finds old junk irresistable. Soon I will post my efforts. Annie told us that she had begun to write a letter to her students. I wish I had seen that expression of what teaching at Artfest meant to her.

My second day was with Anahata Katkin , learning how to create Symbolic Icons. I used my mom's face to create my icon. Mom deserved it. She is my inspiration for non judgemental generosity. The One and Only Best Grandma in the Whole Wide World will have her face in my next icon. I have the picture chosen.

My last class was Abstract with Mary Beth Shaw, . This tiny woman has big energy! This workshop was on how to do series of abstract paintings. With simple tools the possbilities opened up before us. When doing abstracts I have usually referred to some picture, anything, and blown it up until it is not recognizable. Now, I have another option.

If you know me, you will know that, even though I work in pastel, right now encaustic is my first love. All three of these classes, and the pastel, are incorporated into that wonderful waxy medium, that I think is the most sensual, soft, workable medium around. I love also, that it enables me to take all of my art loves and roll them into one painting. Wax is a great adhesive so I can even stick some of my found items right into a painting.

By the way,not that I am an idiot, but the only reason I am able to blog this evening is that my good friend, Karon,, sat patienly with me at the Royale Cupcake place in Ballard and showed me how to access this page and add to it. Tomorrow I will jog my mind as to how to add the pictures. She showed me that also.