Saturday, January 29, 2011

Mona Lisa on My Mind

I have her collaged on a tin can.

She hangs from a bull clip on my sunny back porch.
She smiles from a boxed set of photo albums sitting on the faux mantle in my studio.

So it should be no surprise that she has recently invaded my sketchbook. In a slightly different form.
This is not exactly Mona. It's her sister Giselle.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Valentine Inspired Button Card Angel

I found these dainty glass heart shank buttons and was first going to put them into my shop for sale. But then it occurred to me that they looked like a row of buttons down a shirt front or torso.

And so the transformation started from button card, to torso, to...

...Button card angel. I am joining in an angel swap in the Christian Paper Artists yahoo group.

If we gave each other more grace, peace might have a chance.

Many more button card angels to come!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Teacup Swap

I think it's funny how what we choose for others says so much about ourselves.
Last week I received this sweet hand painted demitasse from Yvonne in a teacup swap hosted by Pat.
My first impression of Yvonne is that she is "earthy"- as in down to earth, decorates in earth tones, drinks tea from earthenware mugs and her poetry makes me think of her as an earth mother.
But the delicate cup and saucer she sent me is bright, blue and hand painted and makes me think of her water color paintings.
Every time I see it, I will think of your art, Yvonne.
Thank you so much!
For more Tea Tuesday posts, visit Kimmie's blog.

Friday, January 21, 2011

SNOW, Snow, snow, snow

We are buried. Wednesday night 9 inches of the lovely white stuff fell over mid Missouri. Today over an inch flurried down. Sunday we are expecting another 4-5 inches. That's nothing for Buffalo, NY, but unusual for Missouri.

Our jockey looks like more like a pointy hatted, bearded gnome!

I still need one more person to send art to. It's not to late to join! See the rules here.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

The Mess Under My Desk

I can procrastinate about something for over a year and then suddenly be as tenacious as a pitbull. I rediscovered this tin of buttons the other day (that I had sorted with my mother over a year ago!) and this afternoon suddenly decided it was time to dive in and see what I could list in my etsy shop for sale. I know next to nothing about truly old buttons, so the research is taking time. But the more I learn, the more excited I become and as tired as I am now (after midnight!), I am just not ready to shut down the computer and turn off the light.
I have celluloid and possibly even some bakelite buttons!
Novelty plastic buttons from the 1950s and some truly gorgeous mother of pearl.
Wood, leather, oxidized metal.
I hope to price these to sell, because I have a mess under my desk.
AND you can still join in the "Pay It Forward" game!
Katie and Sarah have enthusiastically said they would play.
That leaves 3 openings.
Read my last post for the rules then leave me a comment that says, "count me in!"
Edit 9:40pm:
I have two more players-
Rhonda and Pat!
I just need one more person to send art to.
And all you have to do is create 5 tags, or 5 ATCs, or 5 exquisite inchies to mail away.
You are not required to paint a Sistine Chapel ceiling (5 times)!
So won't you join in?
I can't wait to start making something!

Pay It Forward

I saw this on Jo's blog on a day when I was rummaging through my stash of art stuff and thinking I should make something, but then what do I do with it?


So I am joining her "Pay It Forward", which she joined from someone else and so on, and so on backwards (see how far the links take you ;). There are a lot of people participating!

Here are the rules...

I promise something handmade to the FIRST 5 people who leave a comment here. However, to be eligible, you must repost this status, offering something handmade to 5 other people. The rules are that it must be handmade (or homemade) by you and it must be sent to your 5 people some time in 2011. Ready, set, GO!

I further promise to not make you wait all year to receive art from me.

I will mail you something within the next month or so, and probably some of my stash too!

Surely you want a piece of this?

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Tea Tuesday- Cups of the Past

You need to look up the shop, Cups of the Past. I stumbled over this gem of a place while searching for something else (you know how rabbit trails go...). She sells the kind of things I love AND she has a section of her shop entitled, "orphans"(!) for those odd pieces missing a cup or a saucer. Is that the best, or what?

I need to mention (because I am getting many undeserving compliments),
that these cups pictured are not mine.
They are from Cups of the Past!
So if you like what you see, check out her shop!

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Prompted to Draw Something in a Journal?

Thank you all for your very kind feedback on my art journal. Yes, I am doing much better now. I hate to do art when I happen to be depressed, because it becomes a permanent record of that temporary emotional time (about bi-monthly), but it is also the most cathartic time to do it. I'll be glad when I get through menopause!
I have been faltering in my daily commitment to draw something, but am not giving up. Last night I picked up the prompt journal I had started in over a year ago and added a drawing. I have one journal left for sale in my etsy and then I won't be making any more. I have almost run out of library pocket cards, which are the key ingredient.
Anyway, this particular drawing is making me think I could expand on this character (I want to call her Charlotte, the auther of this book, "I Know a Lady...") Which reminds me-- if I hadn't started making a point of drawing regularly, I wouldn't now be getting ideas for stories, zines and other projects. One thing leads to another. You just have to make the first step. I am also learning that I have a fixation with hats. Maybe because you don't have to be a size 2 to fit into one, you just have to be willing to draw attention (because no one wears really nice hats these days any more unless they are attending an Ascot race or a coronation or a royal wedding-- all of which are in short supply here in the States!)
So what's in your journal and are you seeing a pattern?

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Starting an Art Journal

Everywhere I look, either someone is journaling, someone is giving a tutorial on journaling or someone is talking about journaling and giving tutorials whether they realize it or not. :) So I have decided to jump on the journaling band wagon. I need to exercise my atrophied drawing muscles.

I started last Friday night when I was terribly depressed. My image was not happy, but it was very cathartic to scribble and brood. By the way, so I don't get hung up on techniques or pretty covers, my journal is a cheap composition book (cover unaltered until I am inspired) and a fine line Sharpie marker.
I was literally soaking my feet in the bath tub as I drew this page.
My slippers really are black fluffy slip-ons.
And yes, they were very comforting to slip on after a long soak.

Saturday I worked at the Post Office and found an old round dating stamp in a cabinet.
It was the inspiration for my owl page.

Sunday morning I went to church and so illustrated the musings of a "Church Lady". No one at my church wears flamboyant hats, but my "lady" does. She is all about making a statement and is not afraid of attracting stares.
So are you riding the journaling band wagon too?
(Come on! Show and tell!)

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

A Souper Snow Day Tea

Yesterday it snowed all day, but the school district made a wise decision (a rare occurrence) to cancel school while there was only an inch of snow on the ground, because the weather forecasters were predicting more. The kids were happy --and I was mostly happy (at least I didn't have to brave the roads to get them to and from school...)

So after I trudged the block to the post office to mail out some sold etsy items while the kids played outside with the dogs, I decided soup and sandwiches would be the perfect lunch. And since it was a special day, I pulled out my special soup and sandwich plates-- orphaned plates made to hold a cup (there is a circle indentation) that I pair ceramic cups with. This is when my teacups (or coffee cups back in the day, before mugs) hold soup.
That I also had tea (in separate cups!) goes without saying. I was on my second pot of black by 11:30am. You can't drink too much hot tea on a cold, snowy day!
Just canned chicken noodle soup, not home made, but when you have a pretty service, canned and instant taste just fine!
(PIE=Presentation Is Everything!)
I gave my kids most of the noodles, because I prefer the broth anyway.
This is one of my favorite plates because it is shaped like an artist's palette.
I just have the one like it.
It doesn't get pulled out often, but yesterday was a special day.
My Tea Tuesday posts seem to be more about re-purposing teacups than drinking tea, but hey, I am not a fancy tea drinker. I prefer black tea (with milk and a drop of honey) and how many times do you want to hear "Lipton" or "Twinings" mentioned?

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Belated Thanks

Many moons ago, Jo of Fiddlesnips fame, exclaimed over my rusted suspender clips, but lamented not having the means to purchase a set from my shop. Well, I am not adverse to bartering and suggested a swap. She readily agreed and sent me some of her creative jewels. I never did post what I received, because of lack of time or being distracted with only a million other things going on (I sold A LOT of rusted suspender clips!) But I have always wanted to acknowledge her beautiful art. So here I am now, better late than never...
This postcard sized collage is even more wonderful to hold in person! Lots of layers and textures-- so wonderful to have a piece of something I have only been able to admire on her blog. I love everything she creates!

Give me an "N", give me an "A", give me a "T"...
Give me an inch and I will ask for eight! ha!
Jo also sent me a set of precious inchies (one of her specialties!), one for each letter of my name.
How cool is that?!
Now that I've found these again, I plan to mount them on cardboard and make a wire (or ribbon?) hanger. Too fabulous to have put away!
Thank you, Jo, for a fun swap.
I'm thinking I'd like to do another with you this year!
Only this time I'll make something too.
I got off easy just sending you found objects. :)

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Disintegrating Ornaments

What could be a better day for starting a new Christmas project (thinking ahead!) than this 12th and last Day of Christmas? The Day of the Kings. Epiphany. Yesterday I visited my favorite local thrift store to happily discover that all of their Christmas items were FREE for the taking! They have limited storage so did not want to have to keep anything for next year (because there will always be more donated!) So, I grabbed 3 boxes of shiny ball ornaments because I knew I had some disintegrating to do...

I also nabbed a tabletop tree, but that will be another post. ha!

Within two months, weather cooperating, they should look like this (above). My friend Liz discovered the process by accident. She had set out a bunch of these ball ornaments in a large crock full of pine branches as decor outside her antiques shop. Two months later, when she put away her seasonal displays, she discovered her "ruined" ornaments. Aren't they fabulous?! I'm so glad she did not throw them out!

So today I stopped by her shop (Keaton's Refinishing & Antiques, in Higginsville, MO) and after some coffee and animated chat, we ceremoniously set my ornaments out in the same crock, minus the branches, to let the weather do its magic. It's supposed to snow here next Monday! Woo hoo! Bring it on!

You will, of course, get an update on the results!

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Asian Tea

My inspiration for today's theme came from a gift of jasmine and white teas from Carole.
The tins are gorgeous and the loose teas taste quite exotic.
When I first opened her package and found the teas, I immediately opened a tin and brewed up a pot. I tasted, trying to guess the flavor, hmmmm, jasmine? Green? Tasted very different. Then it occurred to me to look at the tin (for the first time!) and saw it clearly labeled, "WHITE TEA". Duh! I have to laugh at myself. I have never had white tea before, so having a tin of it is a treat. I always order hot tea when we go out for Chineses food. I love jasmine tea with Chinese food!
My cherry blossomed teapot was an incredible thrift store find. The plastic spout protector was still on (never used!) The pot pours beautifully and holds a lot of tea. I think I had to give about $4.00 for it (a major splurge for me!) but it was an amazing find I could not pass up. You know how some thing will speak to you and won't leave you alone until you pick it up and buy it? This teapot was one of those things.

The teacup is another thrift store find-- one of my widowed/ orphaned cups, paired with a plain saucer. The cup is marked Haviland, Limoges, found for 25 cents. Are you kidding? Limoge for a quarter?! I would be stupid not to buy it! The saucer is Bavarian china.
The candy is also from Carole. :)
You know I am saving the wrapper for some collage project!

The cup reveals its secret when held up to a light. The china holds a delicate "water mark" all the way around the cup. I think the cup is quite old because its walls are very thin and fragile and the gold is all but rubbed off its handle.
And I paid 25 cents for it!
I still can't believe some of my finds.

I hope your day holds something exotic (or just out of the ordinary) today. Maybe a thrift store find of the century? Maybe something you haven't tasted before, or not in a very long time, that unlocks long forgotten memories...
Me, I may have to go out for Chinese food.