Monday, November 24, 2008


My friend, Natalya, was tagged and went on to reveal seven art-related facts about herself on her blog. In turn, she tagged me. I don't think I have seven personal art-related items to share, so I'll just go with the broad brushstrokes of who I am.

1. I'm first generation American.

2. Reading is one of my passions, always has been; I was a literature and languages major in college. I read more fiction than non-fiction. I'd be hard pressed to name a favorite book of fiction -- that often depends on my mood. But two of my favorite non-fiction books are Seabiscuit and The Secret Life of Lobsters.

3. I can raise my right eyebrow like Mr. Spock on Star Trek. (I was raised with a good dose of Star Trek.)

4. I love to dance, much to the dismay of my children and the amusement of my friends. My husband just watches and chuckles, God bless him.

5. I love to eat cookies, but I don't care for chocolate.

6. Sometimes, I snort when I laugh. I laugh a lot, so I guess I snort a lot, too.

7. In high school, I was a pom-pom girl. We put on the half-time show at football and basketball games, complete with a kick-line. Just to balance out the scales, I was also a varsity athlete, playing volleyball and badminton -- hey, stop laughing .... badminton's a serious sport! When I was a senior, we won the state championship. Yeah, I guess that's hard to imagine, too.


My parents are driving from Illinois to New York for a Thanksgiving visit. We haven't seen them for almost a year so I've been thinking a lot about their visit. I guess it's not surpising that my journal is about their travels to get here. I rubbed a gray oil paintstick over part of a license plate I found on one of my walks, then added a piece of a map and two clip art images -- one for the Land of Lincoln and the other for the Big Apple. I think I actually managed to use gel medium successfully on this piece. Hurrah! I painted a bit and quilted a little as well. What fun! What do you think....does this count as collage?

Monday, November 17, 2008


I admire those artists who have an eye for texture in their work. I think the first step towards being successful at incorporating it into your art is being able to see texture around you. So, when I took my dog for a walk this morning, I went armed with my camera. I was pleasantly surprised to discover how much I was able to see when I put my mind to it. I think that texture will appear to change at different times of the day -- as the light changes and the shadows lengthen -- so I'm looking forward to discovering that as well. Here's a sampling of some of the wonderful things I saw today.

Large dead leaves:

Hydrangea petals:


A hollyhock leaf:

Tree fungus:

Saturday, November 15, 2008

A Gray Day

It's been gray and rainy all day. The wind has blown most of the leaves from the trees. And so I guess it's not surprising my journal quilt is a lonely tree with one solitary leaf outlined against the gray sky. This is raw-edge applique with some free-motion quilting to secure the tree. I did have a bit of fun using a striped fabric for the tree, so there's a touch of whimsy amidst the lonely scene. I've long admired the artists who can be "freer" with their quilting, so I tried it here in the background to signify the wind and changing season. The leaf was stitched, then colored in with pencil.

I also did some messy painting today. I don't know what I was thinking when I decided to use the pink metallic, but at this point, this will look best all cut up. I did learn one thing in all this: I tried to use circles cut from coffee filters as a resist -- Disaster! But they do look pretty painted, so perhaps they'll end up in something.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Getting Organized

Inspired in part by what Lisa Call has written on her blog, I've decided I need to organize myself if I'm going to make any real attempt at responding to calls for entry and/or entering shows. By "real", I mean a deliberate and conscious effort. I've had some luck, to be sure, but I'd like to have a more planned approach. I'd prefer to eliminate last minute, oh my gosh, entries. Yes, opportunities might come up at the last moment that require scrambling, but I'd like to see if I can't think ahead in anticipation of exhibits. I'd like to create some goals. I'd like to know what pieces have been successful and what pieces have been, for lack of a better word, duds. I'd like to keep track of entry fees, shipping expenses ... you get the idea.

So I'm taking my first stab at it. I've created a "Calls for Entry" binder with four sections. The first section, called "Entry Info" has individual sheet protectors that include the details of the exhibits that are of interest to me. They're organized by "due date". This is followed by a "pending decision" section, then "accepted" and "declined" At the front of the binder is a simple list of the exhibits in due calendar order. I've also created a spreadsheet of all my entries, with contacts, prices, fees, tracking numbers, the works. I even got myself a FedEx account, in the hopes that I'll have things to ship back and forth! Hope springs eternal, I guess.

I'm looking forward to giving this system a try. I'm sure I'll be making tweaks along the way. Any pointers you'd like to share would be most welcome. Hopefully the chart with all the blank lines will be an incentive to create more art!

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Delicious Autumn

Yes, another journal inspired by fall. For this piece I free-motion quilted a maple leaf onto yellow fabric, then added color with oil pastel crayons. Next, I stamped the beginning of a George Eliot poem onto the top. It reads, Delicious Autumn! My very soul is wedded to it... Ahhh, the wonder of the English language in the hands of a master. That's just how I feel about fall sometimes, but can never express.

Friday, November 7, 2008


Art Quilts XIII: Lucky Break is opening today at the Chandler Center for the Arts in Chandler, AZ. Linda Colsh's beautiful piece, Drawing on the Mist, was selected for the postcard art. I'm so proud that my piece, Revelation, will be hanging as part of this prestigious show. Please stop by if you're in the Phoenix area. The exhibit will be up until the end of the year.