Saturday, February 28, 2009

Last Day of Pink....

Pink dish and green leaves 1928
Georgia O'Keeffe

This painting was done by one of America's most famous women artists - Georgia O' Keeffe after she had met and married Alfred Stieglitz. She had had several shows and her name had been made. She had just sold a series of paintings for the most any living artist had sold - $25,000. Life was good. I see in this painting the need and ability to find beauty everywhere. Shortly after this painting was done, she was bitten by the travel bug and took her first visit out west. I think she found what she was looking for out there. A place she named "Faraway."
So, I finish the pink series is up to you. You can find it in the simple everyday things in life. Pink is about making the changes you need to help you stay pink. I wish you all a little pink in your life!

Four Letter Words - Calm

Friday, February 27, 2009

A few more Stencils

Same stencil different backgrounds.

Text added for more interest.

Stencils - Digital Photos

This morning I decided I should make something with some of the images I have been giving out.
I saw on the Art-e zine site a thing about making stencils with your photos and thought I would try it. Gillian Allen who runs the site is so talented and gives such great instructions. She has several tutorials on there. They are so easy that in no time I was making stencils. I used the first two freebie images from this week and a background I had painted. Added the two stencils a little text and a new digital collage was in the making. I love the sort of eerie look of the stencils. I think it probably needs more texture and depth. I am going to print it out and see what I can't add the old fashion way - by hand, with scissors and glue, maybe so paint. I will post that when I am finished.

A Polka Dot for Megan

This is Megan's eight inch polka dot for an exchange I am in. She is making a book out of these large eight inch circles. It is going to be wonderful. Her theme is polka dots. Honestly something I am not that familiar with. As a mother to five boys polka dots was definitely not something we really came across ever. Now snakes and critters, basketballs, footballs, lacrosse balls, that is another story. So for me this was definitely a challenge. I loved being able to use glitter on the wings and as part of the background. A girl can never have too much glitter. My scanner can not capture the dimension of the piece, but the zetti Teesha Moore girls are actually raised up. Wouldn't it be cool to have a bunch of these polka dots hanging from the ceiling in your studio? So here you go Megan, I hope you enjoy.
p.s. The giant sequins were from some of my grandmother's stash.

How to Make Your own Chipboard Letters

On the Polka Dot I made for Megan I made my own chipboard letters. First I stamped in black on a white piece of paper all my alphabet stamps. Make sure you do this on white paper. When you go to copy the white is not picked up by your copy machine so whatever you are coping on to becomes the background paper for your letters. Then I glued the whole sheet on to a piece of chipboard. Then I cut each letter out and sanded around the edges. I keep all my letters in a little cigar box. This is a great project to do when you are feeling like you want to make something but what? It is time invested in the future.

For Megan's piece I pulled out the letters I wanted to use and took a piece of leftover card stock from the project. I taped that on to a regular piece of printing paper. I then laid the letters on the copy surface of my printer. Decided on the size and copied them on to the left over paper.
Next, I took a piece of chipboard and glued the printed letters on to it. Cut them out. Inked the edges and Voila! I have my own custom made letters.

Freebies #20 - French Post Cards

Here are some delightful postcards for your personal use. I hope they will find a home in your artwork.

Every girl needs a little pink...

The Ballerina 1927

Matisse certainly knew women and color. One of my most favorite of artists. I love this particular painting. She sits with her hands on her hips, definite attitude, and those marvelous pink tights. No one is going to get past this girl. Feminine, lovely yet in charge. We all need that kind of pink.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Four Letter Words - Sing

Spreading that Pink Feeling....

Woman with Parasol

I got this wonderful picture from one of my blogging friends Aimeslee today. She had seen some of my pink and thought this painting by the French sculptor, Aristide Maillol would be right up my alley. It is a life size portrait that the critics found to lack "depth". So, he was a better sculptor than painter, but we all have to start somewhere. Living here on the coast I actually find this portrait to be quite endearing. Thank you so much Aimeslee for thinking of me and sending me this picture. This is my pink for today. Share something with a friend and see if you don't feel pink.

Mail and Such....

Today I started the day VERY early for me. It was barely light out and I decided to just get up and go take some pictures before the rest of the world had their coffee. When my son moved I asked him to bring in the blankets that were in my car. Low and behold when I put the freshly laundered blankets back in my car I found a whole bag of mail. Mail from December and January.
Since I broke my foot, I have had whoever is at the house or running me around get my mail for me. We don't have individual mailboxes where I live, but two large postal stations. I keep large fabric totes for them to put the mail in. Well... someone did not bring in all of the mail. This afternoon I sat down and went through most of it.
Most was uninteresting, but some of it was Holiday cards and such. Some was from art friends I have met here, who now probably think I am horrible and rude. The best part was there was some totally unexpected mail. Random acts of kindness - my favorite. So I am going to share one of those with you in the next post.
p.s. the envelope is for your art.

Susan Brown's Recipe Page - Spahghetti Pie

This is a spread in Susan Brown's altered book. She sent me a wonderful ATC and this recipe and picture as a Happy New Year. I just found it yesterday afternoon. I was so impressed with it that I decided to blog it. So this is her Dad's [ Ralph V Novak] recipe for spaghetti pie. I am giving this to you the way she wrote it to me. Sounds great doesn't it.

In Backwoods Alabama, there is a new down home favorite for Sunday Brunch. All you need is left over spaghetti and a few pantry staples, and a pie pan...

In an empty pie pan, spread left over spaghetti or angel hair pasta.
Top with 4 tablespoons of spaghetti sauce.
Then get 1 cup of shredded cheese. Which ever is your favorite or you have on hand.
Layer enough cheese to cover spaghetti noodles.
Then add another layer of pasta, spaghetti sauce and cheese.
Pat all this down in pie pan.
Then add ham, pepperoni, left over sausage. Whatever you have on hand.
Add more spaghetti sauce.
Add fresh vegetables - zucchini or yellow squash, whatever your garden has yielded.
Sprinkle the top layer with Parmesan cheese. Then add another layer of your favorite shredded cheese.
Beat 5 eggs with 1/2 cup milk and slowly pour over the top of the layers. You might have to make a couple of holes in the layers to assure the egg mixture goes everywhere.
Let pie set for 5 to 10 minutes.
Take a knife and cut a split in center to see if liquid comes to top of pan. If not, add a little more of the egg and milk mixture.
Bake at 350 degrees until brown and bubbly - check to see if there is liquid in center - if there is you might need to cook a little longer. Bake until there is no more liquid in center. Enjoy!
This might become a new family favorite and no more leftovers!

I love this recipe, and I like the fact that it is so versatile. You can put a little of everything in it and season accordingly. I am trying this over the weekend. Thank you so much Susan!

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Pink Flamingo!

An incredibly beautiful but awkward bird all at the same time. Lives in groups, very good parents. Eat all that yummy shrimp to keep their feathers all pink. They make me believe in modern dinosaurs. Beautiful picture by Audubon.


Thornton Wilder

Photo a Day - Red wall - Black door

Guess who is here?

Mr. Robin and all of his friends, relatives, and neighbors showed up last Thursday. I awoke to this incredible noise. I threw on my robe and went to the window to see what was making all the noise. It was hundreds of Robins. They were in my side yards, the backyard, the front yard, on my gutters, in my bushes, across the street. Every where I have hollies and wax myrtles. This started about three years ago, once my bushes had started to mature and made berries. We are on their migratory path. They show up here for a couple of weeks and eat us out of house and home. Then they take off for their nesting spots farther north. Some stay for the whole year, but most are gone by mid March.

These are just a few of the Robins in a tree out in the front. This is not the clearest of pictures. I had to take this through the window. They do not like me to come out on the front porch. This tree is surrounded by holly bushes so they would dive bomb them....for hours. If someone got to close they would swarm off only to return when the coast was clear. They have been here every day since. All day.

Here is an even dozen. The ground all over my yard and my neighbors yard is covered with robins. This was taken through the side window at my house in the side front. Off to the left is a group of mature wax myrtles. They have been sleeping in there at night. Good news is spring is around the corner.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Digital Collage #6 - Daisy

Here is another digital collage. It is a little more upbeat than the last. The two background papers, one of flowers, the second of daisies I got from the Graphics Fairy. Karen has some wonderful free images. Thanks you Karen for taking the time to find these for all of us.

Four Letter Words - Miss

Freebies #20 -

These are beautiful engravings and a drawing from a 1886 magazine called The Quiver. It is filled with short stories for women on daily life. They struck a real chord with me this weekend as I was going through things. The women in the snow with her child feeding the birds, the young woman comforting the boy after a snowball attack - reminded me of my son who moved, and the women comforting the dove. I do hope you will find a place in your art for these.

Digital Collage #5 - Family Tree

I have been feeling a little blue all weekend. On Friday one of the boys moved far away- an ocean away. I am very happy for him, but at the same time sad. I will miss him very much. I have had the pleasure of being only a few minutes away from him for most of his life. You don't realize how comforting that can be till you don't have that.

When I broke my foot he came and stayed to help take care of and wait on me. It is one thing to watch your kids grow up, go through the "teens" and then into adulthood. As parents we generally don't get to spend much time with our adult kids. Fortunately, I did with this one. Another blessing from breaking my foot. I watched him sell off his possessions, pack,and finally ship things. Lightening his load. A new life, new possibilities, new experiences. I can't wait till Christmas to see him....

So I made this collage this weekend. It is rather dark and sad now that I look at it today. I can not remember whose website I got the background paper from - if any one recognizes it let me know and I will make amends. The tree was a stock photo.

What I have been up to - quilt

After the quilt square exchange was over I realized how much I had enjoyed putting those together each month. I sort of mulled over what to do with them all. Should I combine them and make an arty quilt? Then I started the project clean up and I was going through some odds and ends I ran across a bunch of old quilt squares I had bought years ago. There were several bags full of different size squares. Some large enough to be pillows some smaller.

I laid out some of the smaller squares and decided that I would make a small quilt from them. The fabrics looked to be from the 1920's maybe early 1930's. I loved the bold designs of the fabric paired with some of the soft flowers. The pattern of the squares is the nine patch. Definitely a beginners square, and the squares themselves were poorly put together. The squares points not lining up properly. All things a novice would do.

All quilts tell a story. There is a story in the pattern, the fabric, the quilting. These squares were beginning to tell there story. As I examined them I could see some of the first squares. The improvement in her sewing skills. How she learned to use an iron and get the temperature just right. I picked nine of the nine patch squares - the beginning to the end. They would be the base for a small quilt.

Looking through my fabric stash I found some blue calico type fabric. It was way to bright and new looking. What to do... I decided to tea and coffee dye the fabric. After a few days soaked in a pot of tea and coffee the color was getting there. I then, took the fabric, wrung it out and sanded it in a couple places with a fine sanding block. Then, back to the pot for another day.

I washed the fabric and began to assemble my quilt top. Once pressed it all began to sort of fall into place. Hopefully, later this week I will get the top and bottom together and ready to quilt. I will be hand quilting it. I figure that will keep the quilt true to its original owners intent. I enjoy the quiet of each stitch.

Pink weekend

This is how I wanted to feel all weekend - pink without a care in the world. Taking time to day dream, pick some flowers and enjoy the outdoors. Not happening this weekend. Maybe next weekend.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Four Letter Words - Hope

Something we all need a little of. I have been making a lot of word collages lately. The thing that surprised me the most is how many four letter inspirational words there are. I will be posting them in various frames throughout my blog in the next couple of weeks. Feel free to use them in your art.

Think Pink -Think Spring

Yesterday I saw daffodils blooming, could spring be here?

Freebies #19 - Ledger Paper

Some of my personal ledger paper for you to use in your artwork.

Chicken Breast Lombardy

This is a very easy yet tasty recipe. The chicken comes out very moist . I serve this over rice, but you can serve it over noodles also. If you make extra it freezes well. A side dish of winter vegetables - broccoli, or Brussels sprouts is very good with this. They balance out the sweetness of this chicken dish.

6 chicken breast , boned and skinned
salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup flour
1 1/4 cups butter
1/2 cups mushrooms sliced
3/4 cups Marsella or any other sweet wine
1/2 cup chicken stock
1/2 mozzarella cheese - optional
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
Flatten the chicken breast - always a good way to get out the days frustrations.
Salt and pepper them to taste.
Dredge the breast in flour.
Saute the breast in one cup melted butter for 3 to 4 minutes on each side or till slightly browned.
Remove the breast from pan and place in a 9 by 13 baking dish.
Save the drippings from the pan.
Stir the wine and chicken stock into the drippings.
Simmer 10 minutes.
Saute mushrooms in the remaining 1/4 cup butter and place over the chicken.
Combine the cheese and sprinkle over the chicken. [ I do not always use the cheese. Sometimes I just like the mushrooms and chicken.]
Pour the simmered sauce over the chicken.
Bake for 10 to 12 minutes at 450 degrees.
Then place under broiler for 1 to 2 minutes.
Serve on top of rice or noodles. Yum.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Photo a day - dolls

discarded childhood

Pink Conquers All

This painting is by Edouard Manet. It is of his favorite model, Victorine. It is called "Victorine Meurent in a matador costume." Very risque for the time. A woman in pants, much less short pants! I love this painting. There she is out slaying the bull...with her Pink Cape. Hey, we do that everyday don't we ladies?...I just want the pink cape.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Photo a day - red heart

A World of Pink

View of Collioure by Matisse

Collioure is a little village in France that sits on the Mediterranean. Terribly charming. Definitely a place that after a day you will begin to feel all your worries fade away and the pink will begin to encompass you.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Disintegration Project

I have decided to join the disintegration project that Seth of The Altered Page is having. He has asked artists to make a bundle of paper and place it out in the environment and record what happens to it. The results should be known by May 1st. Click here to read more.

I thought this is brilliant. We are always trying to age our paper and make it look old, how natural to put it out in the elements and let Mother Nature help us along. I am doing six bundles. Each one will be in various place around my house. Each one is different, one is music, one is dictionary pages, one is Shakespeare, you get the idea. I wrapped them in cotton butcher twine thinking I might be able to recycle and use that also. I will record my progress here. This should be really fun.