Thursday, August 26, 2010

Waning Summer

Yes, another book cover. More faux encaustic, lots of texture, a photograph I took last fall of teasle in a meadow. I can't stop myself. I've got journals coming out of my ears.

Our corn is getting so tall I have to look up at it. 

The wood is stacked and ready for cooler days.

The corn is in there somewhere.

If you look closely you can see the corn ladder that supports the tall stalks. And the wire fence that says "forget it" to the little bush rabbits.

The sunflowers are here to bring their cheerful tidings.

Leading to inspiration in the journal.

The finished page. Not much left of the circles.

Being quiet.

Late summer brings the Japanese anemones.

The beans in their fullness.

Amaranth. Remember last year when I made the ink out of the Hopi Red Amaranth?

A visit to the canna lily that I can't remember planting.

And the beautiful swiss chard.

The volunteer cyclamen that came in with some mulch.

Kale greens; healthy, healthy, healthy.

Kohlrabi, weird and wonderful.

John built screened panels to keep the pollinators away from his special peppers. He's the chili meister.

Awash in tomatoes. These are Stupices.

I think the soaker hoses make a pretty pattern.

We're still eating strawberries. Four months of strawberries!!

More beans. More peppers. 

Lots of purple zinnias this year. Very cheerful and bright.

Wow, thank you for sticking with me for the entire tour. Now if you want to see some more wonderful garden photos and some cute as a button grand-kids, hop over to Katie's blog and check it out. When John saw the photos of her canning production he admired and admired. There is something so basic and satisfying about putting up food for the winter. I'm reading Salt by Mark Kurlansky right now and it is a wonderful book about preserving food and a lot more. I recommend it.

Salt: A World History

Before that I read Mauve by Simon Garfield. It is about colorants, dyes and coal tar, the basis of many of our beautiful paint colors. Both of these are phenomenal books if you love history.

Mauve: How One Man Invented a Color That Changed the World

Later gator!

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Gene Flores

I want to feature this great artist again; Gene Flores. I wrote about him in the past here and here and here.
He's going to be at the High Desert Art Festival this weekend in Bend, Oregon for all of you locals. I just looked at the list of artists who will be there and I can recommend it as a show that has attracted the best artists in our area.

Gene and his wife Joan are family friends; we spent the better part of the day at their house and studio yesterday and once again they prepared food all day that was soooo good. We ate al fresco where we could admire their gardens and trees. They have grandchildren now (how time flies!) so we caught up on all the news.

Gene cooks! Gene makes ice cream for his guests! Gene Gene Gene. No wonder I write about you on my blog. Here he grills annato, chili and orange juice marinated chicken, beef and pork for the fajitas.

We tour the printmaking studio. I drool over his uncluttered space.

I shoot photos of his big etchings; this one approximately 24x30" (my guess, maybe a little smaller than that).

Compare the two that are similar. He draws and hand paints each one so that it is unique. It's impossible for me to choose a favorite.

We nose through all his stuff. Yum yum.

Lots of Gene's work is funny as well as political. I think I see some radio personalities in the background and a Fox "news" man on the ground. Tribulation and vexation stalking the central figure.

Here we see in a detail her green card and Birth Certificate; necessary documentation thanks to the vigilance of the radio and faux news people.

I had not known about the technique Gene used to do the detailing in the robe. Sharpie pen over aquatint. I bet Picasso wishes he would have had that.

After the studio visit we settle down to the food. Masa harina tortillas, hand patted and toasted on a comal.

A little food, a little beer, a patio table under the umbrella, throw in some sunshine, sparkling conversation and we're all set.

Everyone is smiling, even the flowers.

Three desserts and home made vanilla ice cream. Peach Cobbler, Blueberry and Blackberry Crisp and Almond Poundcake. I do like me some poundcake, berries and ice cream.

For a great video of Gene demonstrating and talking about his work go here.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Anatomy of a Journal

Yes, another journal. Made the cover last night with the intention of trying out a new faux encaustic finish and lots of texture. Wrapped cord around the cover, painted it and messed around. Took pictures too so I'll share the process.

I'm attaching a piece of raffia woven netting with soft gel medium over a few layers of scumbled acrylic.

Adding a block of red to echo the block of red above the cord. Don't have a real reason for choosing the color but note that I usually gravitate to warm colors. Maybe it was all the tomato soup I ate as a kid.

Crackle mediium and black paint over the red. 

Added some tissue collage. Chose numbers with a special significance.

This was the last thing I did before going to bed. This is a faux encaustic recipe I found in a book but I wont share it because I have invented a better one. This one isn't worth diddly squat.

The next morning it looks like this. 

Here are both covers glued to the charcoal colored spine. The front of the book is on the right. I did more fiddling with the front cover to make it look more like wax before I put the spine together.

And of course I've been playing in the journal too. Paper dolls it would appear. I'm remembering something here ...

Robert Downey Jr. I'm just saying.

Drawn to things that are beautiful.

Needed a new head shot for the book. It's been a long time since I took the last self portraits. 

Gotta go now. Time for Project Runway and a big plate full of fruit. Big happys coming in the next week. I'll keep my camera handy for you if you'd like to come along. xo