Saturday, May 30, 2009

Furry Friends...

Meet Winslow (our sweet, blue-eyed dog) and Ramses (our very loving and vocal cat). My friend took this photo of the two when she was visiting and I had fun putting it into a collage, which I think turned out quiet nice.
Every evening, the two of them get together to groom each other. First Ramses daintily licks Winslow's head - usually around the eyes and his snout - and then Winslow thoroughly washes Ramses' head with his big, slobbery tongue, taking special care to really clean his ears. The whole procedure can range from super cute to somewhat gross, when at the end Ramses' head is completely soaked.
Here a little video for those cat and dog lovers among you, where we captured Winslow enjoying his nightly facial.
video

These two were fast friends from the moment we brought Winslow home three years ago as a rambunctious puppy, and somehow (no matter how much mischief they might get into) they manage to make us laugh every day!

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Sisters

Finally, I can post the little 6x6 painting I had done for my sister for her birthday, which was on May 10, if you all remember. Ok, so it's late... It took me a little while to get finished, for it to dry completely, to get packaged up and then to arrive in Germany. But at least it still arrived in her birth month!

I really like how this turned out and even got the two girls to look like us -- generally. Although in reality, my hair is no longer dark brown and Caro's hair isn't long or really that golden blond. I guess wanted to capture the essence of us and I think I managed to do that. It's a sweet painting and that's what I had intended.

Can't wait to show you some other gifts I am working on, but you'll have to be patient - none of them are packaged up yet and they are all going to Germany...

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Grand Oaks and Flowers...

Tomorrow, I'll have more art to show, but for today I had this little surprise when I downloaded some pictures earlier. I found these images of giant oaks at Wormsloe Plantation, grand houses on the Isle of Hope and Spanish moss from when my friend visited. Every time I see the grandeur of these trees I am awed. And the Spanish moss hanging from the branches lets you know that you are in the South!





And here a few finds from our own, modest garden - it has LOVED the two weeks of record rainfall. There are little mushrooms coming up everywhere and Daniel found this group of tiny ones in our vegetable patch. Aren't they just perfect?
A little sunflower planted by the birds.
Pink yarrow and yellow lantana - we planted them last year and they looked pitiful after the hot summer, but this year, they are strong and beautiful!
Our gorgeous and very prolific hydrangeas.
Fun balloon flowers popping up everywhere.
And the first creeping gardenia blossoms - the most wonderful smelling ground cover!
Unfortunately, our two big gardenia bushes bloomed during the last two rainy weeks, so we cut the last few perfect blossoms to enjoy in the house. The scent is heavenly...
Tomorrow, I will have more art to show you...

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Touching the Past

Another experiment with paper, color and and image transfer. I called it "Touching the Past" because it looks like the glamorous woman is catching a glimpse of herself when she was little and is reaching out her hand as if to connect again with her past.
I also scanned this in gray tones and like it, so have decided to post that version as well. It's been interesting working with image transfers onto patterned backgrounds. If you click on the images to see them larger, you'll notice that you can see the writing of the paper through the little girl's face, which looks a somewhat odd until you realize what it is.

By the way, I've read numerous times that you need laser printouts or photocopies, not ink jet printouts, to use for a gel medium transfer. Because we only have an ink jet printer, I decided to try using those printouts and they actually work very well for me. If any of you are as fascinated by image transfers as I am, let me know how you do yours!

Have I said lately how much I love all your comments?!? I had never expected the level of community and support I have experienced since I started this blog and making art. It's only been a couple of months, but somehow it feels like an amazing lifetime already! Thank you!!

Monday, May 25, 2009

Lily

Just as I promised - more art! I've been playing around with paper, color, and old photos and really like how this one turned out. When I was scanning it, I didn't see that the scanner was set to gray scale at first. I liked the "colorless" version so much that I decided to post both.
The photo is of my maternal great-grandmother, Lily, and was taken in 1900 when she was a beautiful young woman. She died when I was two years old, so I don't remember her, but I understand that she was a formidable woman and lived a quite unorthodox life at a time when this was frowned upon by society. I think you can see in her expression that she knew what she wanted. I have always hoped that I have some of her spirit in me! Here's to the strong women who have come before us!

And before I forget, there are two giveaways you should definitely check out at Vania's Art and at We Blog Artists. Both are giving away beautiful paintings!!! Good luck to you all, but (of course) I hope I win...

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Jewelry

I am having a problem right now. I am making quite a bit of art at the moment, but all of it as presents for family - there are several birthdays right in a row in May and June! So, since some of them are avid readers of my blog, I cannot post the pictures until after they've received their gifts. You have no idea how hard that is for me! When I make something and like it, I want to show and tell. But soon...
In the meantime I thought I'd show you some of the jewelry I've made over the last year also as gifts for family and friends. Some time ago I discovered Lisa New, a talented glass artist in Florida who makes gorgeous lampwork beads. All of the beautiful, large glass beads in some of the photos I got from her. (I still have one gorgeous set of beads from her I am going to make into something for myself!)

I apologize for the somewhat creepy headless shots - I wanted to focus in on the necklaces as best I could. And a couple of the pictures are a little fuzzy, but I had the presents mailed off before I noticed.


Tomorrow...more art!!!

Friday, May 22, 2009

Good Things!

I am aware I am starting the "Good Things" post with an ominous looking picture of bad weather approaching. But...it's a picture of the beach and in my book, the beach in any weather is still a good thing... It's been rainy and blustery here for many days now and will continue, but lessen, during the next few days.

On to other good things -- today I received a little surprise package in the mail from Karen of Tessandore Creative (make sure to visit her blog), just because. So thoughtful and sweet! I opened the letter and out came these five super-cute, tiny, perfectly painted and adorned little houses. I love them!! Thank you, Karen!
Are you a fan of So You Think You Can Dance? Well, I've never watched it before, but will be glued to the TV screen every Friday evening this season because Gabi Rojas, a young and incredibly talented woman I know from Albuquerque, is dancing in it. Check out her audition video - you'll be amazed!! (Now I just have to learn how to vote for her...)



And last, but certainly not least, while my friend was visiting (my excuse for being so late in thanking Suzi...), the talented Suzi of Art With a Touch of Whimsy tagged me. Thanks so much, Suzi! I feel very honored!!! Make sure you check out her blog and her beautiful art!

These are some of my good things for today. What good things are going on in your life?

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Making Art Together...

When my friend was here, she started a beautiful piece of art (her first using image transfers and mixed media) that she didn't have time to finish. So today, while it was raining buckets outside all day, I simply added a little bit of paper, a little more color, a little sand from the beach, and the result is a piece I just love! It's so representative of our friendship!

Thank you all for leaving such great comments on my blog. I love hearing what you all have to say and bask in your kindness every day!!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Mushroom Art

Ok, so maybe this isn't mushroom art (don't quite know what that might be), but this piece definitely has a mushroom on it. I made this background with cuttings from a catalog we got in the mail, and the colors turned out much deeper and richer than I had expected. I immediately saw the mushroom in the image and just sort of brought it out a little bit more strongly. It has a good bit of gold on it, which unfortunately is hard to see on this photo. These are very different colors for me and I really love the richness of it.

As an aside, we are having weather that is so unusual for us - today we barely made it above 60 degrees and it's been gray, windy and rainy all day. We keep joking that my friend brought the weather with her from Germany... But truly, we are enjoying the late cool days as we usually are well in the 80's by now! Having had my friend here has been wonderful! We can't believe a week has almost passed and she leaves again tomorrow. Although we are both sad her vacation is coming to an end, we truly made every minute count!

Monday, May 18, 2009

Beautiful Savannah

Every time we walk through Savannah, we are struck by the beauty of this old city - from the majestic live oaks to the gorgeous buildings, the secret gardens, wide front porches, the Savannah River and the harbor.



If you look closely at the live oak in the picture below, you can see the resurrection ferns growing on the branches. The ferns have loved all the rain lately and are lush and green!
This weathered old building is The Pirates' House where Robert Louis Stevenson is said to have written Treasure Island. It has been an inn and tavern since 1753.

A fisherman in front of two pilot boats by the harbor.
A view of the old buildings of River Street and City Hall from Hutchinson Island.
It sure has been fun showing my dear friend around our area. Aside from playing tourist, it's great to see your life through someone else's eyes, especially someone who has known me my whole life. Well, today it rained pretty much all day, so we decided to stay in and make some art, which was so much fun! My piece is almost done and I'll post it tomorrow, so make sure to check back in!

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Swamp Things

Friday, we spent a rainy morning at the Savannah Wildlife Refuge just across the state line in South Carolina. We weren't sure if we'd see anything because of the rain, but we ended up seeing quite a bit and got some great photos. If you want to see any of them bigger, just click on them! In the picture above, I loved the rainy scene, but there also is an alligator sticking his head out of the water.

A gorgeous waterbird kept fluttering by the side of the road - a Purple Gallinule.
Here a small alligator is hiding between the pieces of wood in the water, perfectly camouflaged! I also love the water reflections.
A nosy turtle kept sticking its head above water to look at us. You can just see some of the pattern on its shell under water.
A harmless snake Daniel found next to the road.
A Great Blue Heron and an alligator.
Another heron in the tree.
A perfectly visible alligator in front of some beautiful water lilies.
A huge gator trying to catch some rays when it finally stopped raining!
And two brave friends daring to get out of the car to see the wildlife up close and (not too) personal...
Tomorrow, I'll post some beautiful photos we took in Savannah last week and today! It's great playing tourist along with our visitors - it makes us realize every time that we live in a gorgeous city in a beautiful area!

Hope you all had a great weekend!