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About Me

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Guymon, Oklahoma, United States
I am blessed to live where my grandfather homesteaded, to have three beautiful daughters who are my best friends, to have six delightful grandchildren who live nearby, to be married to my sweetheart of 35 years and to thrill to the special magic of creating my own works of art. I'll never cease to thrill to witnessing new ideas and images come to life from the point of a pencil or splash of a brush. I am blessed.

Thursday, December 08, 2011

MURDER MYSTERY DINNER THEATER


It's a busy time with the holidays approaching, finishing up holiday commissions, working on scenery for our church's drive thru Nativity and teaching the last few weeks of school.  On top of everything else I am gearing up to direct another murder mystery dinner theater for our local Emergency Youth Shelter. 

The shelter committee is a wonderful group of generous people and they asked if I would get a design ready so they could promote this year's show ahead of the holidays.  They hope to entice some people to purchase tickets as gifts and get the ball rolling on promoting the event.

Here is this year's poster/ticket artwork.  I have to admit that I took the idea of the lettering from an existing design used by the production company.  I first drew it in black and white then recreated it in color using colored pencils.

Tuesday, December 06, 2011

DRAWING COMMISSION

Matthews Family Portrait
14" x 10" Graphite Pencil on 80lb Paper

I know most studio artists live and die by commissions but I really don't enjoy doing commission work.  I have the luxury of a full time teaching position to pay the bills so most of my artwork is created for my personal enjoyment.  If something I've done sells then wonderful but the real joy for me comes in the process and not the sale of the final product.

A good friend brought me an envelope full of various photographs of family members and asked if I would create a composite drawing of the best in one drawing.  I've done this before but found this especially challenging since the photographs were really small and I have never met these people in real life.

I happy to be done.  As in any commission piece, I hope the customer is pleased.  I was able to work a lot in class while my beginning students are preparing to create self portraits for their semester finals.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

PATTERNS IN INK


The fun of a brand new sketchbook is trying to decide how to start filling up the pages.  Since so many of my students are working in ink this month I decided to create a cover page in ink using lots of fun patterns.  I also discovered a little, vinyl piggy bank that begged to be decorated in ink, too.  I purchased a porcelaine pen over the holidays and am anxious to use it to "pattern up" some dishes before I move on.

Meanwhile I am laboring away on this year's bookplate, doing a few Christmas commissions and starting to gear up to direct this year's murder mystery dinner theater.

Friday, November 18, 2011

TIGER COLLAGE

"Torn Paper Tiger"
24" x 36"
Torn Magazine Pieces on Foam Board

Just finished the tiger collage created with tiny pieces of torn paper from "O" magazine.

Today was the deadline for my student's to finish their torn paper collage assignments so I made it my personal deadline as well.  I think I may frame this fellow and possibly donate him back to the school.  I'm also not sure how many more of these I want to tackle.  My fingers are really sore from ripping all this paper!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

ARTIST TRADING CARDS



Artist Trading Cards
2 1/2" x 3 1/2"

Just finished a series of three Artist Trading Cards and decided these vintage beauties deserved to live in a frame.  I collect vintage images and wanted to use them in some multi-layered collages.  I've used colored inks, markers, oil pastels and stamps.  I've included a red butterfly in each piece and used some vintage papers from a old French journal I found at an auction.  (Funny how anything written in French just sounds romantic.) 

The actual colors of the piece are vivid and weren't captured well by the scan but I still wanted to post what I had.  I also matted each piece and added color to the beveled, interior cut of the mat which repeated some of the key colors in the card.

Artist Trading Cards (ATC's) are supposed to be given away and never sold but lately there has been a movement of selling cards so patrons can enjoy them without having to manufacture cards for trade.  These cards are called Art Cards, Editions & Originals or ACEO.  Since these girls are framed up and ready to display I plan to add them to my work being sold at this weekend's Miniature Show at our local gallery.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

MY NEW OBSESSION

My daughters have got me hooked on a new website that is consuming my time.  I love spending time on pinterest.com  It is an online bulletin board that lets you organize your Internet finds, pin them and share them with friends.  I think it beats any current magazine for finding clever ideas and resources.

I have tons of print outs of Internet recipes and resources that are piled up and scattered around my house.  I usually misplace them and can't find the one I need when I'm ready to try them out.  Pinterest saves those resources for me and links me with others who share the same interests.


It costs nothing to join and you don't have to be a member to enjoy looking at the pages.  I've discovered loads of great crafts, art, recipes and have even shared some of my personal artwork.

I can spend hours looking through the various categories of pins.  Just look for yourself at   http://pinterest.com/

Wednesday, November 09, 2011

TORN PAPER VALUE COLLAGE

 "Pieces of Lisa"
Torn Magazine Paper on Foam Board
16" x 24"

Each year I teach a unit on making torn paper collage with my craft students.  My craft classes generally consist of seniors who need one more elective or art credit but who don't want to take a traditional drawing or painting class.  This unit involves creating a full color image by tearing and glueing paper from a magazine.  This project requires my students to "harvest" colored paper that best replicates the same colors as a resource image they select.

I have made a number of these projects over the years.  I've even created a torn paper collage on a lifesized, ceramic pig for the National Pork Council office.  Sadly, I don't have a photo of that giant hog anymore.  It was quite the beast to have standing in my classroom for weeks as I glued and varnished it's hide.

This year I am working away on a tiger face to demonstrate the process for my students.  It's a little like paint by number except no paint - just paper.  My favorite magazine to use for these projects are O Magazines published by Oprah Winfrey.  I have gathered up piles of these magazines for my personal use because they have excellent colors and heavy, quality papers.  
Here is a close up of the piece.  I especially enjoy the ripped edge created by tearing each little piece of paper.  The pieces are then layered much like a mosaic without any gaps between them.

I hope to finish the Tiger this year and perhaps donate it to our high school.  Tigers are our mascot and my students and I have created a number of tiger pieces which hang in our hallways.  I actually have drawers of these demo pieces and have thrown some away after we finish the unit.

2011 BOOKPLATE UNDERWAY

I've done my research and gathered up photos and props and have started on this year's bookplate.  As in the past, I am rendering the entire piece using black ink applied with stippling.  It's a terribly time-consuming approach but I really enjoy the process. 

As in any good work of art, there is significance for me in the subject matter.  I like my annual bookplates to represent something personal in my life while also being a pleasing, pretty piece.

Sunday, November 06, 2011

2011 FALL CRAFT SHOW

My lovely daughter, Lindsay in our craft show booth

My daughters and I just wrapped up our annual participation in a local arts and crafts show.  Fortunately this event is held at my high school so setup is simple and no travel expenses are involved.

All three of my girls contributed to this year's booth.  The hit of the day were simple, jersey scarves made from repurposed T-shirts we purchased at our local thrift store.  The girls created fringed and curled scarves that flew out of the booth.  The curled version was so popular that we had to set up a sweatshop in my husband's nearby classroom to manufacture more during the day.

You can see some of my artwork was on display, too. 

The girls made some extra money but most of all, it was a great experience preparing and enjoying the day together.  I am really blessed that my daughters love the arts as much as I do.  It's a joy to share creating and projecting with my family.

Wednesday, November 02, 2011

WORDLESS WEDNESDAY

TIME SURE FLIES

"clocks" courtesy of junkcamp.blogspot.com

The month of October really rushed by and I failed to find the time to blog about any art adventures.  Much of my month was spent traveling and assisting with the high school one-act play which competed it's way to state.

I've got tons of work lined out to start including this year's bookplate.  I've decided to create an ink piece with clocks and birds as my subject matter.  I've been busy collecting ideas and taking personal photos to work from.  Recently I spent a few, glorious days in Santa Fe, NM and found an exotic bird shop whose owner gladly permitted me to shoot photos of her birds.  So now my resources are ready, my pens are out and I'm geared up to get started.


Saturday, October 01, 2011

A DAY OF ARTIST TRADING CARDS

This past week I taught some of my artist friends and students a "how-to" about Artist Trading Cards.  I spent a great deal of the week gathering up resources and it sure got my juices going.  I learned a long time ago that having a goal or deadline makes for heightened creativity and productivity so I'm on a quest to have some exciting cards for an upcoming show and swap.  I just needed to garner some interest so others would participate with me.
I really didn't know what the finish piece would be
but I loved these images and papers.

This morning I had the house to myself so I covered my dining room table with all the scraps and supplies I wanted and proceeded to build away.  I've also learned that these tiny works of art require some time to develop.  You may cut and paste but then wait awhile before you know what you want to do to give it some finishing touches.

 My father-in-law is a pro at building all sorts of things.  He made me this mini easel and I think it works great as a means to display a special ATC.  I've always had a "thing" for Mona Lisa so I decided to build her into an ATC.
"Mona Loves Paris"
Mixed Media ATC
2 1/2" x 3 1/2"

And finally - here are the finished cards I built from the two images I discovered.  "The Man in the Moon" includes part of a poem my mother used to recite to me.   "Improvisation" just seemed to suit the hilarious image of the lovely lady using a basket as a hat. 
 
"The Man in The Moon"
Mixed Media ATC
2 1/2/" x 3 1/2"

"Improvisation"
Collage ATC
2 1/2" x 3 1/2"

My dining room table is still covered with supplies and I've got a bunch of freshly painted cards drying in my kitchen waiting for the next step of layering stamps, torn papers and images.  So I'm off for more fun.

Friday, September 30, 2011

QUILTING HANDS PROGRESS

Here's an update on my progress with this class demonstration piece built from my grandmother's quilt using my hands.  I've finished working the piece to demonstrate value and texture techniques but I'm interesting in finishing the entire thing sometime soon - just because.

I love graphite pencil on white paper - sometimes it just "hits the spot."  Thanks to a mention in Southwest Art Magazine, I recently discovered a fabulous Southwest artist named Mary Ross Buchholz who creates beautiful horse and rider drawings using graphite.  Visit her blog at http://maryrossbuchholz.com/blog  Her work is extraordinary.

Since my students only have a short time left with graphite this piece may have to wait until next summer for completion.  I am on to building demonstrations using ink which will involve my annual bookplate.

TEACHING EXPRESSIVE LINE

 I spend a great deal of my day creating assignments for my students.  Part of that time is also preparing examples and demonstrating techniques.  My beginning students are studying the Element of Line.  We are doing line drawings of different subjects I set up in the room and currently we are working on expressive line.  I decided to update my unit with a couple of new exercises to teach expressive lines. 

First I had my students create a variety of different types of lines.  Then they had to create a drawing of flowers in a vase using expressive lines.  Like any good teacher, I had to do the assignments, too.

My second year students are about to begin a really challenging ink assignment that will take them the entire second, nine weeks to complete.  They are creating a giant self portrait built from individual grids each filled with patterns.  The trick is to create changing values within the same pattern. 

To start them off in ink work, we draw a random doodle across a sketchbook page and they are to fill each section of the doodle with a pattern.  They are also required to create light, medium and dark patterns.
Ink can feel intimidating at first so this exercise helps loosen students up and get them used to working in that medium.  One of the challenges for me in creating a demo piece is making sure I don't complete a piece that needs to be partially done so student's can figure out the process.

It's been a busy week of building new projects for my classes while also teaching a workshop on Artist Trading Cards.  I've got lots of projects planned for my weekend so stay tuned to see what pops up next.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

LITTLE RED TRIKE HAS A FRAME


The Little Red Trike has a tricked out frame and is ready to be delivered to friends who coordinate the area fundraiser for folks who are fighting cancer.  The event is sponsored each fall and I think this is the fourth time I've donated a painting for their silent auction.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

ARTIST TRADING CARDS

I am up to my ears in projects these days but thanks to a text from a good friend I've added Artist Trading Cards (ATC's) back into my life.

ATC's have been around for years and artists across the planet have been building and trading these itty-bitty (2 1/2" x 3 1/2") works of art.  A few years ago I required my students to create ATC's and we had a great time making and trading them.  ATC's are supposed to be original works of art made in miniature and traded, never sold.  You can find websites that feature ATC swaps and there are even kits available to get started.

When my friend texted about hosting an ATC event I got the itch to drag out all the scraps and odds and ends I used to collect for making them.  Today I launched an ATC workshop next week for my students and friends so I am up to my ears in preparations.  The student president of our local art club currently works at a coffee shop and she is going to ask if they would host an ATC swap and show.

I have a few, special ATC's from former students and hope I can entice other high schools, the local college art program and some of my artist buddies to build and swap.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

CLASS DEMONSTRATION

In the fall I start out my advanced students working on a variety of graphite pencil and charcoal pieces.  My second year students are required to create a drawing which incorporates hands.  This year I decided to demo using an antique quilt top and photographed my hands appearing to piece the quilt together.

This quilt is very sentimental to me.  It was created by my grandmother using remnants from my grandfather's shirts.  I usually have it stretched on a frame and hanging in a guest bedroom since it is small and never was finished.  I also love the fact that it was created over a hundred years ago while my grandparents were still living in a dugout on our family farm.  To make it even better is the fact that I was told the quilt pattern of eight pointed stars is often referred to as "Road to Oklahoma."

This is the early stages of my demonstration.  I am trying to impress upon my students the importance of microscopic details and strong contrast with a variety of values.  The challenge for me in this piece so far is creating the drape and perspective of the star patterns and replicating the patterns on the fabrics my grandmother used.  I am "embellishing" and changing a few of the patterns to add more variety and that helps me instruct my students to change their pieces and not rely totally on the reality of their resources.  I love drawing and all art for that reason - you can change whatever you want, however you want.

I am trying to work from upper left across my piece.  I like to demonstrate this approach to my students to try and prevent smearing pencil marks as you reach across the paper.

As in all demonstration pieces, I don't know if I'll complete this or not but right now it's a lot of fun to work on.

Monday, September 19, 2011

WALK A MILE IS MOVING ALONG

It feels great to be back on the easel.  I've got most of the shoes' local color in place and started adding some value changes.  I really hope to capture how worn these moccasins are so each rip and weathered section is a challenge. 

I'm saving the little beads until last like dessert.  I've created bead work before and I loved working on such itty-bitty details.  I've been jumping from project to project at school and at home but I plan to finish this piece before September ends.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

WALK A MILE REVISTED

A year ago I did a small, colored pencil drawing of my grandmother's moccasins.  The piece sold quickly at our local gallery.  I have often thought I should revisit this special subject matter and create more work featuring these antique keepsakes.

I recently purchased two small canvases and decided to take the moccasins out of their protective glass containers and get to work in acrylic.  With the start of school, I have loads of demo pieces going at school with my students but wanted to have a gallery quality piece started on my easel at home too.

So here's my beginning.  I started by under painting the canvas then applied a great carmine color which I roughed up and scrubbed out so the under painting shown through.  I love creating portals in my work so this wrap around canvas was perfect for a vintage looking frame.

I also decided to compose the shoes so they would look like they were hanging on the canvas from a straight forward viewpoint.

So the fun is about to begin.  I am anxious to challenge myself to capture the worn hide and tiny beads on these old shoes.

Thursday, September 08, 2011

LITTLE RED TRIKE

"Little Red Trike"
4" x 4" Colored Pencil on 80lb Paper

Just finished this itty, bitty piece as a donation for The Circle of Friends Cancer Fundraiser coming up in October.  Each year I donate a piece for their silent auction and I have been pleased that some of my close friends have purchased my pieces and contributed to this important cause.  I love when something I've created is loved by someone I know. 

This piece is small but has lots of vivid color.  My third and fourth year, advanced placement students have been working on warm-up drawings using an old tricycle and bicycle as their subject matter.  I decided to join in the fun and create one of my own.  Colored pencil work is extremely time consuming no matter what size it is.  I apply layers and layers of thick color blended together so the finished piece has the qualities of painting.  Now that it's done, I am going to frame it in a glossy red frame with a wide, white mat.

I hope someone has a sweet memory of a little red tricycle and gives it a good home.

Monday, August 29, 2011

SKETCHBOOK TIME

I love my sketchbooks!  I have a wide variety of different sizes and paper types made especially for wet or dry media.  Some are full of examples I use in class where I require my advanced students to do weekly sketchbook assignments.  Some are themed books where I challenge myself to create a total book that has a single concentration or idea.  I have watercolor books, pastel books, books of only black paper and lots of standard, white paper books.

The only problem is which books to haul around and which books to leave at home.  It never fails that I get some inspiration only to discover that I left the appropriate sketchbook behind so I often drag a heavy bag filled with everything just in case the urge hits.

I have always required my students to use sketchbooks and I've gotten used to groaning and dropping grades when they ignore sketchbook assignments.  Lots of fellow art teachers have abandoned sketchbooks for those reasons.  I believe strongly that sketchbooks are a vital, artistic tool.  The more I draw, the better I draw.  When I have my sketchbook handy, I am prone to pull it out and make use of idle time rather than spend it playing on my iPhone. 

I also love, love, love the attention I get when I am busy doodling in my sketchbook in public.  It's great fun to have someone notice, walk over and admire my work.

Today I am teaching a "how to" in sketchbooks to my second year students. Little things like cut a piece of thin cardboard to sandwich between pages so marks don't scratch through pages or never draw on facing pages or keep your book in plastic as you haul it around to prevent it getting dirty and most of all - have it with you all the time like a best friend ready for a conversation.

Friday, August 26, 2011

BACK TO SCHOOL

We've had eight days of school and my eager, art students are finishing up a series of warm-up exercises.  I teach a crafts class for upper level students, beginning art classes which focus on drawing and painting skills and two advanced classes including an Advanced Placement studio class.

I've found that it takes a warm-up project to get everyone back in the swing of working and hitting my rigid deadlines.  I've also learned that it's important that I draw and work along at first to establish how I want my students to perform.

It's been a long, dry summer of little "arting" for me so I decided to complete my value drawing I used as a demonstration for my Art II students.  Each year I drag out a box of old sneakers and require my students to make a detailed line drawing and then using the same shoe and pose to create a full value drawing.  I instruct them on the uses and techniques of 4H to 6B pencils and all the tricks I've learned about rubbings and blending and reflected light, etc. 

My classroom is packed this year.  I currently have 147 students and 30 of them are working on shading sneakers.  It's exciting to have so many students on fire and excited about drawing.  It always inspires me to create and generate new art work on my own.  I love teaching and I'm fortunate that I get to combine my love of art with fostering new talent in the classroom.  The school year looks bright and full of promise!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

SUMMER OF 2011

The Shoe is hoping to fly again soon!

My summer has wound down and I'm back working in my classroom in spite of an ongoing battle with my new knee.  On Friday, August 5th, I had a second knee surgery following the June 3rd total knee replacement to improve my mobility and restore some flexibility.  This operation has set me back some but seems to have helped my knee flex and bend.  As a result of another surgery I now have four more weeks of physical therapy, pain pills and support hose which will follow me to my high school classroom.

It's been a rough summer and not just because of my new knee.  My children have all had battles and trials and our region (like many in the states) has had a horrific drought that has devastated farmers and ranchers and our rural economy. I'm pretty glad to be saying goodbye to the summer of 2011 and starting up a fall in my classroom.  I've spent a few hours preparing my room and will report for duty on Monday - in my white, stretch, support hose.

This past week I discovered a little ray of sunshine that I hope marks the positive transition into fall.  The trunk of some sort of plant has often sprouted beside my front step but for the twenty some years we have lived in our home it's never produced a bloom.  Well, right on cue on my granddaughter, Lily's second birthday it burst out with a beautiful lily.  Cool - right?  We enjoyed it for awhile and then I captured it, pressed it and preserved it to someday give to Lily perhaps with a little grandma wisdom about light at the end of the tunnel, God's grace through trials or that there are often sweet reminders just when we need them that all is well, all is precious and there is beauty just when we need it.

I hope to be back and at 'em soon with new artwork and artful experiences.  So look for some blooms after my summer of drought.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

NEW MEXICO ART SHOW CONCLUSION

What's Down the Road?

I just returned from taking down my art show in Taos, New Mexico.  This was an awesome experience for me and I was thrilled when the owner of the Trading Post Cafe and Gallery invited me to show again in a year.

The question for me now is - What's Next?  I still have quite a bit of inventory left from the kitchen counter series and I am really wanting to explore some new, more challenging subject matter so I'm not sure what I'm doing next.  Thanks to weeks of physical therapy (and three more weeks to go) I am feeling like tackling a new, artistic pursuit.  Right now, however, I'm not exactly sure what's ahead.

Graham's Grille - Taos, NM

This trip to Taos, NM included eating at a different restaurant.  We got reservations at Graham's Grille located just off the historic plaza.  It has been there for years but we've only walked by.  We had a great meal and fabulous conversation with locals.  Michael and I met and visited with the Taos artist, Bill Arms and local realtor, Paul Johnson most of the evening.

Single Pump Gas Station in Truchas, NM

Thanks to good friends who loan us a place to stay in Santa Fe, we left Taos on what is known as the High Road to spend a few days in the "city different."  We have a few favorite spots on the High Road.  One is the bizarre town of Truchas teetering on the edge of a ravine.  It's filled with art studios and one, tiny, single pump gas station.

Miracle Dirt at the Chimayo Chapel

Our next stop is usually Chimayo where we have visited the Sanctuary de Chimayo for years.  It's been fascinating to watch the changes surrounding this ancient mission known for it's miracle, healing dirt.  The congregation has built up the area with all kinds of monuments and outdoor worship sights but the church itself is still the same. 

We arrived right in the midst of Sunday Mass and enjoyed listening to the priest as he prayed for rain for the drought stricken region.  We then peeked into the adjoining room where the miracle dirt is found.  I love this tiny room.  The walls are lined with crutches and canes and all sorts of discarded medical equipment from the faithful who claim miraculous healing.  I was tempted to add my cane to the display but I'm still not at the point I'd claim to be healed.

"Chimayo Chapel"
6" x 8" Colored Pencil

I've created three different paintings of the Chimayo and only have this small, colored pencil still in my inventory.  Who knows.  Maybe I'll work on another one since this place has such a special appeal and primitive beauty or maybe I'll build something out of my stacks of photos or resource files filled with images. 

The easel is set up, the paints are out.  All I need now is some direction.


KIP GABRIEL WATERCOLOR


"Kip Gabriel"
16" x 8" Watercolor on 200 lb Arches Paper

I am fortunate to work with some fabulous teachers at Guymon High School.  Just next door is a great friend who teaches U.S. History and her husband is the 3-D Art Teacher.  I had the added joy of teaching art to their daughter who now is expecting their first grandchild.  This is a baby gift for this wonderful family. 

The family loves to hunt and fish so the baby theme they requested was to feature all of the things they enjoy hunting - turkeys, pheasant, deer and their love of fishing.  They also asked that I include their treasured black lab.

Kip Gabriel was supposed to arrive August 8th but he has yet to make an appearance.  As always, I hope the family enjoys my gift.

STUMP CARICATURE

"Grandpa Stump and His Grandsons"
8.5" x 11" Ink on Card Stock

A friend requested a cartoon/caricature of him and his three grandsons to screen on T-shirts. It was fun to tackle this simple little project during my recovery.  Years ago I seemed to be doing tons of cartoon images but not so much lately.  At one point, I even set up a booth at local events or special occasions and drew caricatures all day long.  It's always a challenge to caricature females and children....I find it's best to "cute-a-phy" rather than exaggerate features on these subjects.  These three little boys were all pretty darn cute to start with.

Sunday, July 03, 2011

MY HAPPY PLACE

"My Happy Place"
6.5" x 10"
Watercolor on 200 lb Arches Paper

This is the first piece I have completed since my total knee replacement a month ago.  I decided to concentrate on a watercolor I started a couple of years ago which was a demo for my students.  The reason this subject seemed to beckon me is that it portrays one of my favorite places on the planet.  It is a window seat at the Plaza Bakery right on the corner of the historic and busy Santa Fe Plaza.  My husband and I love to sit in this window and people watch on one of the busiest and most interesting corners in Santa Fe.  You can always count on seeing some bizarre, colorful and one-of-a-kind folks stroll by.  We have even seen close friends walk by.  I think a lot of Santa Fe visitors love to "dress the part" when they are in town so it's fun to watch tourists and locals alike.  We have sat in this location enough to even know some of the local characters who frequent the plaza such as docents from the Georgia O'Keeffe museum and some of the area street musicians and panhandlers. 

My husband is holding his GPS in the painting.  One of our hobbies is to geocache while we travel.  It involves using a GPS to hunt for hidden logs that are scattered all over the world.  Santa Fe is a great place to geocache with hundreds of these little logs hidden in parks and public walkways.  If you want to learn more about how to join us and thousands of others who use million dollar satellites to find Tupperware containers in the woods visit www.geocaching.com

So as I continue to recover (which at this stage involves some very agonizing physical therapy sessions three times a week) I am dreaming of my happy place in Santa Fe.  Fortunately we head that way in a week.  I am taking down my Taos, NM art show on July 10th and we are going on to Santa Fe to enjoy a few days away from the attacks of my aggressive little physical therapist.

If you are in Santa Fe next week - look for me enjoying a cup of coffee and a decadent pastry in the window of the Plaza Bakery.  And if you are there - treat yourself to the unique atmosphere of the "City Different" through one of the best spots in town.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

THANK YOU NOTES

It's been eighteen days since my surgery and I am slowly finding my way back to my easel.  I "tucker out" quickly so I try and make good use of times when I have some stamina. 

I am extremely grateful to live in a generous community where lots of coworkers, family and friends have generously brought by food, supplies and loaned me assorted medical equipment to help me through my recovery.  So one of the first things I completed has been a simple, little watercolor thank you note. 

I discovered these little cats years ago and honestly can't remember where.  I've since enjoyed drawing them doing all sorts of funny things and thought they would be a cute image on a thank you note.

I am trying to finish up two, personalized watercolor baby gifts and playing with some small colored pencil pieces but again - I am held back when my energy seems to evaporate.  Thanks to physical therapy three times a week and pushing myself I am making progress.  I just wish I was moving faster.

Thank you to everyone for all your prayers and continued compassion.  I'll be back soon.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

SUNFLOWER FESTIVAL RESULTS

This is my first post since having total knee replacement on June 3rd and I hope I am finally getting back to some kind of normal. 

The Sunflower festival was on June 4th and I'm thrilled that my "Fancy Shawl Dancers" won the 2-Dimensional Best of Show Award.  My banner was selected as one of the two pieces featured in a live auction and sold well too.  We were all disappointed that Kelsey's banner didn't sell well but Lindsay's had a nice price in the silent auction.  I wish I could have been there and I don't have much recollection of the day as it is.

I've got my easel set up waiting for me but between physical therapy sessions and six hours on a knee extension machine at home, I haven't found much motivation to be creative. 

Thank you to everyone for your prayers through this ordeal.  I'm anxious to be on the other side and enjoying my creative self again soon.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

WEDDING CARICATURES

I recently had a commission to do cartoon caricatures at a friend's wedding.  Due to the impending knee surgery there was no way I could sit and do caricatures on the upcoming wedding date.  The bride asked if I would at least create caricatures of her and her family for decorations.  Here is my finished work.

Year's ago I used to set up and draw quick, ink caricatures at local events and children's parties.  I actually haven't done much cartooning like this in years.  I enjoy the exaggerated facial features of caricatures but for friends and family I generally create "cute" cartoons that flatter a little more than traditional caricatures.  I remember doing hours of these quick sketches finding I had to create drawings of baby after baby.  I learned very quickly that every baby has to be cute no matter what. 

The couple also asked that I design a cartoon frame for the cartoons.

This is the bride and groom which the couple plans to recreate on the top of their wedding cake.


 I didn't get a lot of suggestions of hobbies or interests for the bride so I just let her celebrate.
 The groom loves Nerf guns.
The youngest daughter is described as a princess
 One son loves money, nerf guns and anything spy-like.
 This son has his own superhero symbol.
 This son excells in all sorts of sports and academics.
The oldest daughter loves FFA, her boots and claims to be the boss of the family.

My blood pressure is coming down with the exception of the recent calls from the hospital business office regarding payments for the joint replacement surgery this Friday.  Maybe I can set up a booth in the hallway of the hospital and raise some money doing caricatures to pay the bill.

Keep those prayers coming!