Wednesday, December 31, 2008

goodbye 2008!

Thank you to everyone who shared a hope, dream or resolution on my last last post...what an amazing way to end the year!  I truly appreciate everyone who has taken the time to comment on my blog over these past few months and look forward to sharing lots of new work in the coming year.  This special place where I can see and be seen has proven to be a haven of joy and inspiration.  
We are starting to prepare a special New Year's Eve dinner and it smells yummy here...
Tonight's menu:   Puff Pastry with carmelized onion and feta (thanks Trader Joe's)
                                Artisan Cheeses served with Honeycrisp apples 
                                 Roast Prime Rib with a green and pink peppercorn crust
                                 Potato-fennel gratin (to die for...really!)
                                 Thyme roasted carrots


Chuck is attempting  tiramisu for the first time...he's really excited and I hope it turns out (it's pretty ambitious).  Anyways after a great meal complete with wine, champagne (and sparkling cider) we will have a shadow puppet show by candle light and then play a few board games.  I hope this New Year's Eve finds you surrounded by warmth, joy and optimism.


Monday, December 29, 2008

Party Girl Give Away!


I have to admit...I love New Year's Eve.  The whole idea of having a point in time to reflect on the past year and to contemplate the coming one has always appealed to my glass half full sensibility.  I don't make lots of resolutions and stuff but I do take time to really think about what the past year has brought and what my hopes and dreams for the new year will be. 
 On that note I am officially announcing my first ever New Year's Day Party Girl Give Away!  
I am asking anyone who stops by my blog between now and midnight on New Year's Eve to post one hope, dream or resolution for the coming year.  On New Year's Day at 12 noon I will randomly draw a name and the winner will be able to choose one of the three special New Year's Party Girls that I will post that day ( yes that's them in the works up there....)

Photo #2 is a new "Cloud Study" piece which is almost done.  I used oil paints as a base layer to get a richer background this time instead of using a layer of  oil over a wax base.  As you can see I haven't dipped the clouds in beeswax yet....

Photo #3 shows two blocks that may be part of a new series I have been thinking about for some time.  I'm hoping to complete these two pieces in the next few days but am trying to figure out exactly how to execute my idea....hmmmm...

That's about it for now-

Sunday, December 28, 2008

is dinner ready?

I don't usually post photos of the kids but the mini chef costume, stick on mustache and shark slippers are just too funny. 
 It seems so odd to have been away from my studio and blog for so long but it has been a really great week.  It has included a white knuckle drive to Michigan, a wonderful few days spent with family and lots of cooking, knitting and game playing back here at home. 
 I finally snagged a few hours in the studio today and experimented with some oil paints as a base layer on a few maple blocks and i'll post some photos of those tomorrow.  After a week away it seemed like a good idea to stretch a bit creatively and open up some new options. 

psst...I also started work on a special New Year's "Party Girl" which I plan to give away on the first day of 2009! 

Sunday, December 21, 2008

no peeking....

If you are my mother or sister quickly close this post...

                                                  On The Ball (the rural life)

                                        On The Ball (garden of earthly delights)

Here are a few last minute gift just finished as we head off to Michigan (I'm literally waiting for paint to dry (LOL).  I hope this post finds everyone surrounded by family, good friends and good food!  Happy Holidays!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Workin' on it...

Today was really good.  I spent lots of time in the studio painting and listening to music, packaged a few pieces for shipping and signed up for an amazing conference in June. 
 My New Year's resolution (yes, I know it's early) is to enter a few shows and I currently have 3 entry forms sitting on my desk.  My goal is to have these completed and submitted by the 1st of the year (nothing like achieving your goal on the 1st of the year!)... and then do some sort of magical good luck dance in hopes of getting into at least one! 

  Here's just a bit of what I was listening to today ( The Fratellis)....

MixwitMixwit make a mixtapeMixwit mixtapes

Monday, December 15, 2008

visitors welcome...

For the next month I will be exhibiting my work at Papernstitch.  If you haven't visited this amazing shop yet you're in for a real treat.  I was waiting to see who else was showing work this month before putting together my post (thinking that I would mention a few favorites).  But honestly, there are so many talented artists in the shop right now I can't choose! 
 Please visit me at Papernstitch and you're sure to find a few new favorites as well....
Happy Monday!

Saturday, December 13, 2008


I wanted to share the beautiful new painting I received from Deanna Wood this week.  As many of you know I'm a member of the Beeswaxteam which is a growing community of encaustic artists committed to sharing information, resources and support.  For the holiday season we decided to do an art exchange where each member that wanted to participate created an original 6x6 inch encaustic painting to share and received one in return. I absolutely adore my new painting which is from a series Deanna did based on dreams of tornadoes.  Thank you Deanna...I LOVE it!

I updated my shops with lots of new pieces this morning including six new "On the Ball" paintings.  It was fun working on all six at once because they are all the same but different. Each one has her own unique style and attitude.  I like them all but have to admit I kind of have a favorite...(shhh, don't tell the others!)

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

The Neighborhood Used To Be More Colorful...

These faded beauties are mostly uninhabited now but their stories are alive in us. It is in the noisy, intoxicating chaos of the city that (generations ago)many families started their lives here in America.  There was a time when kids played in the streets and people sat on their stoops just to share the vibe of lives colliding, coexisting and melting to form a more perfect union. 

I'm really happy with the way this new frame/shadow box turned out....what do you think? 

Monday, December 8, 2008

1/2 dozen new beginnings....

I love new beginnings (which would explain why New Year's Eve is still one of my favorite nights of the year...).  All six of these blocks are destined to become part of my "On The Ball" series.  I already have their dresses and ball's cut out and I hope to assemble them tomorrow and put the finishing touches on by the end of the week.  As you may have noticed, repetition is present in many of my paintings.  Many times I will cut nine of the same shape out of newsprint and collage them onto a panel and see where it leads.  In this case I have six separate blocks which all started out with the same pale blue base layer of wax but have already taken on very different moods from the layer of oil paints I applied, burnished off and then heat set.   As I add the newsprint dresses and balls and add faces, hair and legs each painting will become even more unique.  It's amazing to watch each piece become what it was meant to be (of course there is always one who ends up letting me know she was not meant to be at all)....

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Thinking of Poets and Parties (alone and adrift in a dream)

Night-time can be complicated...
  It beckons us with romantic ideas of star filled skies but darkness can feel empty and in our dreams we fill up that space with many things which aren't easily explained when we wake.  I think much of what I try to do in my work is to bring some of these underlying ideas to the surface (not necessarily to explain them but to explore them...).
Yesterday I wrapped up a major project which had been taking much of my time each week since mid-September.  So now I am back in the studio and am excited to have quite a few new things in the works.  I was really excited about being invited to be a part of Paper-N-Stitch and will have a shop set up there starting on December 15th. One of the pieces I'm working on required a new sort of frame/shadow box  and after a few tries I'm really happy with the results and am working on getting it painted and put together( I hope to share this piece later in the week).  I'm also planning to submit a few paintings to two juried shows in early 2009 and need to get going on the applications (and cross my fingers and toes...)
It's just started to snow again and the fire is going so I'm off to enjoy a glass of wine and a bit of the Sunday New York Times....

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Music and The Muse....

I find that I cannot really get anything done in the studio without music.  In fact I know I've mentioned it here before but I find I need really loud music playing to get into the creative groove.  I think it's the fact that the music allows my mind to wander just far enough to stop thinking in the day to day type way and create images that live inside me just below the surface...
Above are two paintings in progress and below a sampling of what was playing in my studio today .....

MixwitMixwit make a mixtapeMixwit mixtapes

There is also lots of Wilco (hard to pick just one), Ben Kweller and Andrew Bird on my ipod.
Oh, and a friend just passed on Bon Iver's CD and I'm loving that too.  What are you listening to in your studio?

Monday, December 1, 2008

Connections across oceans....

Hi seems like forever since I've posted (or painted).  Thanksgiving was celebrated here with lots of family and lots of food but now all is slowly falling back into place.  It's funny how long it takes to catch up on normal life stuff after a house full of guests.  Anyways, it's good to be back and I look forward to spending at least a bit of time in the studio each day.
Above is a painting I completed late this's titled " Transatlantic Echo" .
 Happy Monday!