Friday, August 31, 2007

And the Living is Easy

Life is peaceful here today at the farm (hah! It's not really a farm but my imagination is strong). I've finished up some projects that I'll be able to share later and I've worked more on teaching hand-outs. My friends have been nearby with suggestions and support; what good and reassuring friends they are. One phoned me this morning and emailed me her latest journal pages which I loved seeing. We admired them together as we conversed. What a great way to start the day.

So that is why I'm sharing my "garden-variety" journal pages with you. Not because they are special but instead because I love to look at the pages of others myself for all the personal idiosyncrasies they hold. Obviously I don't work from a template or central idea; I just let them grow as they choose. Some people have a style but mine I think are all over the place.

Dear Hermanito had to have oral surgery this week. He is old, his gums are bad, he walks like his joints hurt and his kidneys are failing. I've written before about how his increasing fragility just makes me love him more. And more. And more.

We canned 20 quarts of tomatoes yesterday, aren't they beautiful? When I do the job alone it is all helter skelter (like I am in the studio) but when John mans the canner it's all by the book. I peeled tomatoes and then got out of his way. They are like jewels, shining down now from the pantry shelf.

If only we could put other things in jars to enjoy later. I'd save a hot summer day, a perfect Cecile Brunner rosebud, the smell of the barbecue, the sound of crickets in the evening and the feeling I get when my heart is open. What would you save?

Monday, August 06, 2007

Back from Idaho, On to Arizona

We just touched down from Art on the Green at Lake Coeur d'Alene in Idaho. The weather was perfect and the lake was all that and more. The art fair was tremendous fun as always and the people in Idaho were very kind to us. I gathered a new group of artists to share with you; as always, the ones I found outstanding and unusual. I hope you like them.

This is Nan Drye of Drye Goods Clothing & Art. She is modelling a jeans jacket with hand painting and transfer and embellishments. Love the shells and trim she's chosen.

The cowboy in chaps struck me as particularly frisky and fun. Embroidered bright red poppies and Nan herself. Good job!

Nathan and Mary Eberle set up next to me and have an unusual art form. They make flowers out of various kinds of paper. They just finished filming a segment for DIY network and their business is really taking off. They are also musicians; Mary is a vocalist and Nathan plays keyboard. This is a very exciting time for them; it's fun to watch talented young artists get recognition and success. For a close-up, check out their website.

And here again is my friend Ami Davis. She weaves the nicest wraps and garments of anyone (they feel different; softer and more luscious) and you can contact her at I wrote about her at Edmonds but Blogger lost all the photographs that went with the post and I didn't save a copy so I thought I'd try again. She lives in Missoula near the very famous awesome Michael DeMeng. For such a small town, Missoula sure is home to a lot of artists.

This is Rik Nelson and his school of fishes. Made out of can lids, bottle caps and colorful kitchen tins. He showed me how he coordinates the colors of the tins with the beer and soda caps he flattens and uses. Recycled - yay! Colorful - yay! Clever - way yay! Check it out here.

Next is Mari Anne Figgins. She is a Spokane artist and can paint watercolors like nobody's business. Enjoy her website. She is a master of the art.

Under the tall pines surrounding Lake Coeur d'Alene. In a grassy meadow. Listening to the great music and eating huckleberry ice cream. Feeling a great calm as we watch the people go by. This year for amusement I counted crocs (the shoes) and listed them by colors every time a pair went by. They are hugely popular. (I have 2 pairs.)

This year's sand sculpture. If you click on the archives you can see last year's sand sculpture too.

The customary celebratory after-show Margarita celebration. Life is good!

And this was waiting for me when I arrived home. I collect tarot decks and did not have this one. When Ricë Freeman-Zachery offered one up on her blog I hurled myself at the chance and thrillingly was chosen to receive this. I can't wait to sit down and play with it thoroughly; thank you Ricë, not only are you the web's funniest writer but you are generous as well.

BTW, Ricë has a new book coming out in about a month entitled Living the Creative Life. I just know with her incredible writing that it is going to be a great one. You can pre-order it at Amazon.

So now I have to cover my eyes so I don't get tangled up in reading all the blogs I've fallen behind on (this is soooo hard. I try to keep up with all of you and usually do a pretty good job) - but I am off to Art Unraveled in 2 days so I have to RUN and get ready to go now. I will catch up on everything when I return and I will bring news from sunny, monsoon-y Arizona.

In haste,

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Teaching at Artfest

Pinch me; a long time dream has come true. I will be teaching two classes at Artfest next April. Anyone who knows me even slightly has heard me rave about this wonderful place for artists to gather and grow; everyone who attends watches in awe as their lives change as a result of the amazing learning and networking that occurs there. In a word (or two) we support each other. We accept and encourage each other. We include new people. We will make you feel welcome and at home. And in a few years you might be writing a "pinch me" post of your own. Check out the classes and consider giving this gift to yourself.

All skill levels are welcome. Come play with us. I'm inviting you now.