Tuesday, February 25, 2014

ART: Life & Mystery

Untitled Encaustic on Panel

Some beautiful and mysterious things have been 
happening to me this week, and it's only Tuesday.  
These things have the fingerprint of God all 
over them.  I'm in awe of his lovingkindness.

Blessings to you.

Sunday, February 23, 2014

ART: Relic I

'Relic I,'  Encaustic Collage on Panel
 1.5" x 1.5"
Another stamp-size encaustic collage inspired by 
the artwork I saw in Italy last year.  I was mesmerized by the 
actual coral which was included in medieval reliquaries 
and which also appeared in Madonna and Child scenes.
 I learned that coral was used as a 'charm against evil' 
and that a small coral branch was often hung on a 
child's cradle or around a child's neck for protection. 

So,,, I took apart a family heirloom - 
my mom gave me her coral necklace thirty years ago 
and now one of the branches is suspended in this 
symbolic encaustic relic.
Claudia sent me stamps from Austria some time back,
and I cut Mary & the babe from one of them with 
small surgical scissors.  I often feel like I'm operating 
on my pieces.  I use stick pins and small tweezers too. ha!  

On the miniature hutch.
The hutch compared to books.
I think the tiny hutch is becoming a tiny shrine. :)

A blessed week to all of you!

Saturday, February 22, 2014

ART: Passionate Amateur

Setting up for the encaustic demo at the Art Center.

"BE AN AMATEUR. That's all any of us are: amateurs. 
We don't live long enough to be anything else." 

- Charlie Chaplin

Be a passionate amateur, a curious child, 
a life-long student of your craft. 
No one to impress,, no applause or praise to seek,,, 
just keep your nose down at it. 

I've come to despise the word 'professional' I think.
What if business cards and self descriptions of 
professional were replaced with the word

How silly, right?
How freeing..... 

Wishing you a wonderful and thoughtful weekend...

Sunday, February 16, 2014

ART: Encaustic is painting with beeswax.

Red Mini Book - Encaustic Collage Cover

A little advice from inside my mini book'
where I scribble favorite quotes:

"Stop the glorification of busy."

1900 New Testament - Encaustic Collage Cover
"... and I will open, Lord."

The simplest definition of encaustic is a painting made of beeswax.
But there are many complex parts to that....

And that is the start of my presentation next week.
I think I'm overthinking it....?  ha!

Couldn't they just come and watch my madness?
That would be too much fun.

I'm still not prepared.  But this weekend,
I managed to create many intimate encaustic pieces.
Very satisfying to me.  I played with
magic and curiosity in my studio and
I would call that success. :)

'Il Viaggio' (encaustic collage on panel)
American friend...
The trip to Italy last March inspired this little diptych.
I finally found the perfect American friend for the Italian girl
this weekend!  Everything was finished last year,,,, except her.
'Il Viaggio' [the voyage] is finally complete.. sigh.

I'll save the other pieces I made for another post...

I wish you a beautiful and kind week!

Saturday, February 15, 2014

ART: Encaustic Studio

"Dante's Dream"  Encaustic Diptych on Panel, 6"  x 2 1/2''
Ode to the Bee, Encaustic on Panel  2" x 2"
Encaustic Corner
When it's 60 degrees outside I can open the studio door and
window and work with Encaustic.  I  need adequate
ventilation for safety reasons, and then I still limit
my exposure time to the melted beeswax.  

The gallery owner dropped one of my pieces which took out 
three chunks from the corners, but I was able to fix it and 
return it to the gallery today.  She also said "red" sells. 
 I did not make the "reddish" piece above for that reason.
I had something in mind - but it took a slightly different turn.
Black does not photograph well - dark colors do not photograph well.
In fact, Encaustic is often not very photogenic. Ha!    

What about my studio!?  What a sweet mess in that corner!!
I know how to maneuver around all those tins and cords though.
Oh, I bought a new heat gun!  Most artists get all excited when they
get new brushes (I do too), but I'm so thrilled about my new Wagner
heat gun.  I gave myself a blister with it today though!  Seriously.

One of these days when I get better organized I will share some 
pictures of my studio.  It's a cozy, beautiful spot really with a
balcony and Prairie Hill view.  :)  

Encaustic panel sitting on book.
I consider this beauty the "Mona Lisa" of encaustic mummy paintings!
I burnished her image into wax using a transfer method. 

I made some other mini panels of her copied image and
applied two layers of wax to the surface.
I think I may have some give-aways at my Encaustic 
talk and demo next week.  Tomorrow I have to spend 
time organizing my presentation...

Playing in the studio.
I'm pretty sure I discovered "The Guy With The Pearl Earring." :)
I cut him out of a magazine - an 18th century work.  

Hope you are having a fun weekend!

Thursday, February 13, 2014

LIFE: Heartbeats

Hand/Heart, Encaustic on Panel, 3" x 3"  

A little over three years ago I watched as Dr. Trachte inserted a long needle 
into my mom's back and suctioned a huge amount of water from her lungs.  
I forget how many weeks it had been since he'd performed her triple by-pass
 surgery then.  That procedure can be typical post open-heart surgery.
We've not seen this amazing surgeon in a long time, yet my
mom has had many ER scares,  doctor appointments with her cardiologist 
and various tests since that time.  Mostly her blood pressure gets unstable 
and extremely high.  Today, Dr. Trachte guided my hand to the location
 on my mother's abdomen where an aortic abdominal aneurysm was 
recently discovered.  I could feel it pulse under my hand.  
At the moment the aneurysm isn't large enough to warrant an operation, 
but mom will be checked again in 6 months to see how fast the AAA is growing.  
A future surgery is inevitable.... but not for now.   
My mom's heart is important to me - every beat - every moment.

A little nature find today.

Wishing you peace and health.

Sunday, February 9, 2014

ART: Longing for spring...

Blue Nest Maker, Encaustic Collage, 2" x 2" 
Sorbet, Encaustic Collage, 3" x 3"
Bird with a Pansy, Encaustic Collage, 5" x 5"
Waiting for Spring, Encaustic Collage, 2" x 2"

I had to take some artwork to the local gallery this weekend.  
Shoppers really enjoy my birds,,, what's not to like about birds, right?
I hope these bring some cheer as we all wait for spring to arrive!

Pristina with Spring Flowers, Encaustic Collage, 1 1/2" x 1 3/4"
This little lady is like a delicious mini tea cake!  I cooked 
her up in my encaustic studio today and she's mine for now. 
She cheers me up already as I wait for spring,,, ;) 

~       ~       ~       ~       ~

In my last post, I promised to share Greg's Solstice Song 
 written for oboe, clarinet and bassoon.  The
performance by the Equinox Trio can be heard here.  

"As I take note of the wonderful things in my life,
more wonderful things come to me." - anon.

Thursday, February 6, 2014

LIFE: Music - Solstice Songs

Reishi tea, a good book!, amazing chocolate! and reflecting..... 
Really enjoying this inspirational gem.
And this!

Greg hosts the annual New Musical Festival every year and
this week we were delighted by the Equinox Wind Trio's performance.
The day had finally come 'to hear' - the work which had been conceived last
summer.... Greg asked me to write 5 haikus which were inspiration
points for his Solstice Songs composition for the oboe, clarinet and
bassoon.  If I may say so, between the trinity who breathed the notes
 into the air and Greg's arrangement it was quite awesome and I 
had to remember to exhale myself.  

I appreciate musicians who can make our hearts dance!
And I'm always so proud of my husband's work and I honor
the gifted Equinox Wind Trio!  

I will ask my tech savvy husband how I might be able to share
the recording of the concert...

I hope your day is filled with good things!

Monday, February 3, 2014

NATURE: Tracks &Trails

The wind was sleeping and silent, so
we took a walk from our house
 into the wildlife refuge,, 
following animal tracks and trails in the snow,,,
coyote, birds, bison, deer and elk,,,

somewhere two coyotes on the prowl...
Just as we started out west from Prairie Hill,,
two coyotes ran across the field. They saw us first
and ran like devils... 

We usually hear coyotes more than we see them,
so it was nice catching a glimpse of some in the daylight
running across this snowy field! :)

[The pictures at the very top are their paw prints by the way.]

a friend gave me this antique lace square. i found a 1 inch frame!
Sigh.  I'd like to say farewell to winter.  

~ If winter comes, can spring be far behind?~
-P.S. Shelley

Sunday, February 2, 2014

LIFE: A lot of snow & little crafts

Double-stranded Peace and Purity Necklace

Watching the snow come down today.
I hope this is winter's last hoorah!

I miss the red-wing blackbird,
so I cut my own.
and a haiku...

War paint fills the sky
On the redwing blackbird's wing
Red, yellow and black 
~        ~        ~        ~        ~

Wish you a great week!

Saturday, February 1, 2014

NATURE: Winter Details

I marveled at the details today....
winter exposed every
line, shape, color and texture
to every one of my senses.

~     *     ~     *     ~     *     ~

"The world is full of magic things patiently waiting
 for our senses to grow sharper." -W.B. Yeats