Tuesday, May 26, 2009

A Decadent Diversion

I was thrilled to find that someone has written a biography about Mary Nohl. The first time I saw Mary Nohl's house (aka "The Witch) was in 1979.....I was 20. It was and still is an amazing site. There are sculptures all over her yard. A gate and fence with faces. Faces hanging in the trees and from the roof. I've always wanted to go inside the house, and now is my chance....inside the pages of this book. Mary Nohl is a fascinating woman. Pursued art all her life. Had to deal with vandals.....very sad. I have loved getting lost in the pages of her life. Her drawings, paintings and sculptures are incredibly playful. She really enjoyed creating, I think she lived for it.
The weekends visit with my Dad was good, we were able to take him out of the hospital for a few hours. He was thrilled to get home, see 1 of his cats...the other cat is so shy he didn't come out of hiding. Today I hear he is doing very well. Many hours in PT...he is walking well with a walker and will be able to go home on Friday. We're getting him set up with Lifeline, so if he falls he won't be on the floor for all those hours like last time. It's nice to see him laughing and joking with the hospital staff. Every just loves him and they are taking such super care of him. Thank you so much for praying, your prayers are making a difference. I am so grateful to you.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Keep us in your prayers

This has been an emotionally difficult week. The other day my Aunt called with the news that my Dad's cancer has spread to lymph and his colon. We are driving up today to spend a couple of days with him. We are able to check him out of the hospital for a couple of hours. He is anxious to go home and see his cats! Life is precious isn't it? It's so easy to take things for granted, that the people you love will always be there. I know there will be lots of hugs and "I love yous". His condition has changed so much since Easter when I last saw him. This is so scary, but I know it is part of life. Today, tell someone you love them......

Sunday, May 17, 2009


This morning I rubbed off the paper from the rubber and I had success, the designs stayed.
Next for the fun, carving the stamps. All of these designs are from my sketchbook. I made one stamp in 3 sizes. I can hardly wait to start stamping all those papers.
My aunt called me this morning (did I mention I'm afraid to answer the phone?) she found my dad on the floor, he had been there since 7 last night. She called 911 to take him to the hospital. She doesn't think he'll be able to live alone anymore. He was doing so well, then he fell and now it seems he's going downhill fast. I just don't want him to suffer.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

A passel of papers

The papers turned out pretty well so far, I think. I like the range of color that I got by using the paint straight from the bottle, then adding black, then white. Next step is to stamp, stencil--etc. to make them mine.
I had a minor setback here, apparently I didn't use the right medium or burnish the photocopy hard enough because as I was rubbing the paper off, the photocopy came off too.....dang it. So I just finished re-gluing the photocopies using matte gel, burnished it very well. Must wait for them to dry before carving......oy the waiting.......
I am now afraid to answer the phone when it rings. It seems it's either my mom or dad that's in trouble. My mom came home from the hospital yesterday, but got tangled in her oxygen tubing and took a tumble-thankfully she's okay. My dad fell, nothing is broken, but he is using a walker and is on pain meds. Paul and I are going up to visit him next weekend. Hopefully my knee will be up for a long car ride. This is so difficult, seeing them age, seeing them struggling with their various illnesses, seeing them taking life one day at a time.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

What's cookin'

A coupla years ago, I took a workshop that Anne Bagby was teaching at Valley Ridge Art Studio. It was a fast paced class, as Anne demonstrated how she carves stamps to use to create her patterned papers, then lead us through the process of painting, staining and glazing papers. Anne primarily uses deli paper as it is very thin and works well in collage. Carrie Burns Brown has a kick-ass collage video. She shares great ideas for creating collage papers. Not only do you have a total blast making these papers, but you also have a goodly stack at the ready for collage.
Both Anne and Carrie paint their own papers as store bought are likely to fade,this way you can make exactly what you like.
Here I'm using deli paper, art tissue, hanshi and lineco tissue. Some crinkle when painted, some stay fairly flat, depending on how much water you use to dilute your paint......if any.
I started with pthalo turquoise and water, painted a couple of papers-then added black gesso, painted papers-then added white gesso to the same mixture and painted a coupla more papers.
I really like working in a color family. Using phthalo turquoise straight from the bottle, diluting it with water, adding black, adding white.....the colors are beautiful and will work well together. I like the grayed down turquoise and how the white gesso perks it up.
Then on to Quin Gold...can't believe I still have some of that......
In the percolator, I have some ideas rolling around for stamps. I don't want to use the same types of designs for stamps that Anne does......keeping in mind "the sound or the echo". These papers need to be personal. So whilst they dry, I doodle in the sketchbook. I'm thinking about symbols and abstract shapes. This process is so enjoyable. I loved getting lost in painting papers. Looking forward to the next step........

Monday, May 11, 2009

Are you the sound or the echo?

"Are you the sound or the echo?"

I've been spending time in the quiet. Cutting way back on tv and music, just too distracting for my thoughts. Trying to pay attention and write in my journal. Sometimes I get so bored with my work, something needs to happen to shake it up a little. I've watched a number of art videos last week. Watching other artist's paint, collage and work through design problems has given me so much to think about. I've taken toonumeroustocount workshops and have learned a good many things.
One thing I know for sure is that I want to be the sound, not the echo.
When I get home from PT, I want to spend some time in my art journal, experimenting with some things I've been reacquainted with. And just to make myself accountable (apparently I need a bit a supervison) I'll post what I come up with. Anyone want to join me?

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Count me in!!!

I saw this on Patti Digh's 37days blog. It sounds like so much fun, I've got to do it too. .....here goes.......

The original post reads:

The first five (cinq) (cinco) (5) people to respond to this post in the comments will get something made by me. This offer does have some restrictions and limitations so please read carefully…

I make no guarantees that you will like what I make. (No refunds… no exchanges!!!!) What I create will be just for you, with love from me. It’ll be done this calendar year (2009) and when you get it, you have to let me know it arrived.

I will not give you any clue what it’s going to be. It will be something made in the real world and not something cyber. It may be weird or beautiful. I may even create something totally unbelievable and surprise you!! It will be handmade and may be any medium I choose. Who knows? Not you, that’s for sure!

I reserve the right to do something painterly or whatever - it may be just weird!

The original meme requires you to post this text into a note/post of your own and make 5 things for the first 5 to respond to it. I’m not going to require that of you. If you would like to do it, great. I encourage you to do it but it’s not a requirement.

Monday 5/11 8am I'll draw 5 names....geez, do I even have 5 readers?!

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Calm before the storm

These are a few of the tiles that I took up to Charlene's Gallery Ten in Door County. I have been having a blast working with copper foil. You can create so much texture with a few tools and apply a patina to give it a wonderful aged look. Charlene let me know that 2 tiles had already been sold, before the gallery was open for the season. Hope that is a good sign.

A lovely Hans Christian Andersen quote


Emily Dickinson

I had to give myself a dope slap on this one. I looked at it and looked at it and finally realized I spelled loveliest wrong....ooops --I really had fun with the design on this one. Pairing Mae West's quote "Curve: the loveliest distance between two points" with a guitar. I've got some designs swirling about in my head for the solo show in July.

My aunt called this afternoon, my dad couldn't have his chemo treatment today because his appendix is enlarged. He has to have them removed ASAP. I can't even drive up to visit him with my knee on the mend. Today while my uncle was having a physical, the doctor found melanoma. It's always something. There are days I just want to fill the gas tank and run away.

Monday, May 4, 2009

On the mend

I asked my doctor to draw a picture of what he did to my knee. The cartilage was gone on the inside of my knee, so he put in 2 metal plates. A ligament on the left side was pulling my knee cap out of alignment, so he fixed that as well. I can't believe how great I feel. I went in for surgery on Tues. and came home on Friday. I couldn't wait to get home. It is impossible to get a solid block of sleep in. Every 4 hours someones coming in to check your vitals, refill the ice in the polar cooler, asking me to flex my feet and check the pulse in my feet, taking blood, giving me pills, pills and more pills. Checking the IV....etc. What I do miss is dialing 3663 and having someone ask me what I want to eat AND then bringing it to me. Sadly I don't have this feature at home. This is my new best friend, the CPM machine. Continuous passive motion. Strap your leg in and it moves your leg for you. Each day I increase the flexion. I'm at 100 now! 100 degree bend, that's pretty awesome. PT also gave me a list of exercises to do. Some are harder than others, but as I do them they are becoming easier. I have a walker, but my house is pretty small, so I have been hanging on to things for balance. The walker is just too big and is always in the way. I start PT on Wednesday afternoon, looking forward to getting on with it. Planning on going back to work next Monday. I have to remember to take it easy, rest and ice, not overdo.....

I has home for 5 minutes when these beauties showed up! One of the brokers and his 2 assistants that I work with sent these. They are just gorgeous!! More later....I need a nap.......