Friday, May 25, 2012


The Wild One
(weekend giveaway on soulemama!!!)

next issue of Taproot 
(in the mail!!!)

I promised I would have some fun and exciting news to share today and I can now tell you that it involves a giveaway on Amanda Blake's Soulemama blog (fun) and the next issue of Taproot magazine (exciting).  I have been a sponsor on Amanda's blog for the past two months and this weekend I will be giving away The Wild One (shown above) and answering some interview questions there.  If you leave a comment on her blog the day of the giveaway (not sure if it will be saturday or sunday) you will be entered to win (fun and easy).  And I'm super excited about the next issue of Taproot, not only because it is a collaborative thing of beauty, but because my painting The Social Workers will appear inside its pages. I'm heading out the door for a long weekend with my parents so I have to run but I wish you all a fun, exciting and lovely long weekend!

Thursday, May 24, 2012

bees, birds and butterflies...

(she dreamt of a hive among the houses)

In Between Dreams 
(hearing the message and giving it wings)

More color and plenty of lovely creatures are making their way into my work these days as our early Spring breaks open and spills into Summer.  Tomorrow morning we'll be packing up the car and heading to Michigan to spend the long weekend with my Parents.  Once we get back the kids will only have one week of school left...crazy how that happens!  I am definitely ready for the seasons lazy mornings, unstructured days and picnics at the lake.  But, before I leave I have some fun and exciting news to share so if you get a chance check back in tomorrow : )

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

playing with wax-

Three very creative, talented and kind women from Wisconsin spent Monday afternoon here playing with wax and the results were truly inspiring.  None of them had worked in encaustics before but all had experience creating in a variety of mediums. I had sent each of them some basic process information and a few websites to help them think about what they might want to create and I have to say these women hit the ground running. They each had an idea of what they wanted to create but I was truly impressed by their openness  to the medium and all that it offers an artist.  As they layered and fused they really embraced the process and I could see that this was not the last time they would be playing with wax : ).  I spend most of my days alone, working in the company of music and hens, so I really enjoyed and appreciated their company, conversation and enthusiasm and I think it's safe to say a good time was had by all. I'm heading into the studio to open up the big window, turn on some music and finish up a few new paintings...what are you up to on this gorgeous Wednesday afternoon?

Friday, May 18, 2012

saying goodbye to clutter-

And saying hello to a beautiful, clean, well lit space to create.  After meeting a big deadline, packaging up lots of work for shipping and having an "intern" in my studio over the past few weeks I'm afraid my bits and pieces had taken on a life of their own.  As I tried to get some painting done mid-week I found myself uninspired and overwhelmed by the mess of newsprint bits, gold leaf, blocks of all shapes and sizes and the bumpy wax spills covering my work table.  After avoiding the studio for two days I decided to get on it and cleared everything out.  I recovered the tables, sorted through the paper bits, keeping what I still loved and getting rid of what I didn't.  I came across many buried treasures and got right to work in my shiny and clean space.  I've heard that artists are notoriously messy and can can create in a sea of clutter and  chaos but I just can't do it.  It's like the clutter creeps into my brain and muddles things up.  In addition to needing to clear my head,  I have three women driving down from Wisconsin on Monday for an Encaustic Workshop* and needed to prep my supplies for that class.

H a p p y w e e k e n d t o y o u !

* I think a lot about teaching and while I don't formally advertise classes, if you are anywhere near Chicago and are interested in playing with wax, you can contact me and we might be able to set something up for your group of 2-4 people.  

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Be who you are-

Black Sheep In A Red Hat

As I mentioned the other day, good words seem to be jumping off the pages these days.  When I came across the phrase "Black Sheep" I knew it would fit one of my figures perfectly.  When I was a very young,  I remember the term "the black sheep of the family" having a negative connotation.  It was the person who got into trouble, took off for distant lands, marched to their own tune, the one who didn't do what was expected.  Now that I'm all grown up, I see the term in a completely different light.  The "black sheep" to me is the dreamer, the seeker, the artist and traveller who is open to the world and embraces change and opportunity.   I really like this dramatic little piece. Maybe it's the red hat, maybe it's the fact that I love sheep, maybe it's the solitary figure on the black background which says so much to me (it may just be that I may never come across the words "Black Sheep" in print again and so this piece is completely unique). Well, I'm off to the school garden for flower drawing and a chalk mual but I have two other pieces close to being finished, so I'll see you back here later in the week.  

Whether you celebrated Sunday as a Mother or a Daughter (or both) I hope your day was lovely.

Friday, May 11, 2012

slowing it down-

Today is a quiet Friday and I am embracing it fully.  The three painting pictured above were started two nights ago and they are slowly developing.  I thought they might be finished by today but last night I realized I needed to slow down and let them breathe.  They are full of new colors and familiar images and I like where they are heading. There are chores to be done, a garden to be tended and hens who need to be hugged and somehow, after a very busy week, today it feels like there is time for all that. 
 Happy Friday : )

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Glamour Girls...

Glamour Girl (superhero)

Glamour Girl (love)

Hello from the middle of the week.
Good words seem to be jumping off the pages these days.
Love and Superhero are two of my favorites.
More new work to share Friday.
Thanks for visiting.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

"I am in love with the world."

"I am in love with the world." was the 1st thing Maurice Sendak said in an interview with Terri Gross that bought a tear to my eye.  When I heard him say that simple sentence, I thought, me too, I am in love with the world.  He passed away today at the age of 83. As I was out running errands, I heard snippets of different interviews Terri had done with him over the years on Fresh Air.  There were many things he said that brought tears to my eyes, in fact, I had to skip my last errand after the last bit on living and dying.  I knew him as an amazing artist and author but as I listened today I realized he was more than that.  He was an amazing human being with a gift for stirring the soul.  

Friday, May 4, 2012


Glamour Girl 

This little lady jumped to the front of the line this morning.  I'm pretty sure the bit of newsprint used to create her dress appeared magically out of a massive pile because it was the message I needed to see today.   I hope this weekend finds you floating in your garden, in your home and most importantly in the company of those you love. 

Wednesday, May 2, 2012


the birthday dinner

Hello from the middle of the week.  Deadlines, sales, packaging and wrangling critters has thrown my week off big time but today things seem to be falling back into place.  The photo above is the birthday dinner Chuck made for my birthday dinner last night.  The crab cakes were amazing and the siracha aioli really made the dish sing.  The napa cabbage slaw with celery, radish and buttermilk chive dressing was refreshing and light. And the plastic wrap on my lathered up head during dinner was unfortunate (yes, i had critters too and curls and the micro comb don't play nice together).  But today deliveries have been done, packages have been shipped, the house (and all heads) are clean and the last load of laundry is in the dryer. I'm about to start a pot of lentil soup and  I have seven new paintings to add to Etsy this evening.  But tomorrow I am  really looking forward to spending lots of time in the studio working on a group of glamour and party girls (they have been missing from the shop for far too long).  What are you looking forward to doing this week?

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Mayday and May Day...

Yucky, icky and just plain gross came to visit yesterday.  After avoiding the dreaded lice outbreak over  15 years of parenting and countless close encounters it showed up yesterday on my two boys.  I checked everyone 1st thing yesterday morning after a note from a fellow parent Sunday evening.  I was much calmer about the whole thing than expected and was really just too overwhelmed and exhausted by all the washing, combing, laundry get too freaked out.  I will say the brand new hair shears were an inspired purchase and made the whole thing so much easier to deal with on two boys who needed haircuts anyways.  We will re-treat everyone with the non-toxic Fairy Tales line and another home remedy in 7 days and then again in 14 days.  But, today is my birthday and when I blew out my candle (during the ice cream for breakfast birthday extravaganza) I made a wish to keep the critters away just to be safe.  There were lovely handmade cards and thoughtful gifts this morning and I'm meeting Chuck at the lumber mill to pick up some scraps for painting and a special project/birthday gift he is going to build for me (more on that in a few weeks!).  For dinner Chuck is making his amazingly delicious crab cakes and  napa cabbage buttermilk slaw and I saw a yummy bottle of white wine in the fridge to complete the feast.  All in all, I think it's going to be a pretty spectacular day : )