Thursday, October 28, 2010

The Return

I arrived back in Boise Tuesday evening from my trip back to the mid-west. It seemed like a very quick trip, probably because two days were spent driving from southern Illinois up to Holland, Michigan for my 20 year college reunion and back.

But before I tell you about that, you must endure pictures from the Missouri Botanical Gardens where my parents and I spent a lovely autumn day. I haven't been there in years. I would have liked to have seen the Chihuly exhibit that was there several years ago, but enjoyed seeing the few pieces that remained behind.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Quote of the Day (On the Road)

Yesterday, I made my way across the country, via airplane, to "land" at my parent's house. Tomorrow I will be hitting the road to drive up to Holland, Michigan to attend my 20 year (yes, that's right) college reunion. With that in mind, I bring you the quote of the day.

"Patience is something you admire in the driver behind you and scorn in the one ahead."
Mac McCleary

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

THAT Project, Continued

For a while now, the process of making my artworks has been going smoothly, until this "rusty" one. After I took out the "ruffle", I sewed a new seam and it looked like this. Looks like a landscape. Not what I was going for.

I looked back at my inspiration photo and realized what I had done. Once again, a seam or two came out. To be continued . . .

Sunday, October 17, 2010

It's One of THOSE Projects

This is part of the "play-along" rusty piece I'm working on (no, there is no rusty color on this part). I had what I thought was a great idea, until I actually executed it.

That ruffly piece was some silky, crepe-like fabric I had leftover from another project. I cut a strip, folded it in half and sewed along one edge (you can see that part hanging off the end). Then, I pulled the thread so it would get more ruffly (is that a word?). I thought it would be a great texture for what I wanted. But, after sewing it in the seam like a piping, I didn't like it. I think it was because it was much smaller in width afterward and it make the seam line really bulky. Out came the stitches and the ruffle.

I still like the idea but not sure for what application it would be suited.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Congratulations . . .

. . . go to the North Junior High Girl's Junior Varsity Volleyball team for being the City Champions this year with a perfect undefeated season! (Who said Bronco football was the only game in town?) Yippee!!!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Sketchbook Project - Page 4

I finally got around to doing another page in the Sketchbook Project. This is a drawing of a leaf that is pretty dry. It has been a long time since I have done a drawing like this with my regular art pencils (maybe you can tell). I've been using colored pencils and other things, or just not doing this type of drawing at all. I noticed that I like the softness of the colored pencils better, even though I did have the range of H and B type pencils for this.

This is only the second actual drawing in the Sketchbook. I am really way behind if I hope to fill all the pages. I've been thinking about it and I know why. When I signed up to do this project, I had so many ideas in my head about my theme "the view from up here". But after I received the book and realized that it was something other people were going to see, then in my mind, it had to be "good". Well, I want it to be good and therein lies the problem.

Too much pressure on myself and not the freedom to just get the ideas down, like I have done in my regular sketchbook. But in my regular sketchbook they truly are sketches of just lines, enough to remind me of what my idea was.

Hopefully, you will be seeing more of these pages here more regularly. I'm not sure if I'll get over that self imposed pressure but the project must go on.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Another 4Q Artist

I haven't had too much time, yet, to really take in the artwork of the other artists in the 4Q Gallery. But there is one that I would like to introduce to you. Her name is Nancy Hoyt and she makes lovely jewelry. Come down to the gallery (Thurs. - Sun.) to see some of her work or click on her name to go to her website.

I like her work because she uses a lot of silver, which is my metal of choice. You can tell her pieces are very well made and the designs are unique. Anna, of course, enjoys the designs with cats. She would really like this ring.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

First Thursday

One of my evening events this past week included First Thursday downtown. It was the 4Q Gallery's "grand opening". I made some chocolate truffles to take for the reception. Anna and I spent some time there along with some of the other artists. There were quite a few people there and I hope more showed up later. I wanted to take in some other galleries so we didn't stay too long.

One space in the 4Q gallery.

The Idaho School of Art and Craft was doing a metal work demonstration at the 4Q Gallery as well. Anna tries it out.

In the same building as the 4Q Gallery, also on the lower level, is the Gallery Alexa Rose (for now). That was our next stop on our First Thursday tour. There were several installations done by artist Star Moxley.

This one above was titled Red Sea.

Anna looks at another installation piece.

On the main level of the same building is the Idahostel which opened this summer. So far they have 12 beds available, with the possibility of future expansion. I guess to make it more interesting, they had some people come in to paint murals in their space. Anna and I went in to take a look.

I wanted to visit a few more places but the hostel was the last stop on our tour, besides picking up some dinner at Mongolian BBQ, because Anna was hungry.

Friday, October 8, 2010


It's almost the end of a very busy week here. Every night this week I have had a meeting or event to attend, except for one night. That was the day that Frank had to go to San Diego and he got back later in the evening. Anna also had school off yesterday and today.

This morning we got up early to go take down my artwork in Meridian. It seems like I just put it up not too long ago. It all came down pretty fast, as usual. Since the store we wanted to go to afterward wasn't open yet, we decided to stop by Krispy Kreme to waste some time.

Anna is ready for some doughnuts.

Doughnuts going through a waterfall of glaze. Yum!

After we finished our doughnuts, we headed over to Hobby Lobby and arrived just as they were opening. Perfect timing. We did a little craft shopping there and then went to Craft Warehouse to do a little more.

Here are a couple of the things I found. At Hobby Lobby, I found these cute little felt Christmas stars (yes, they already have tons of Christmas stuff out). They are stiff and I'm not sure what I will use them for just yet, but I'm sure I'll find some use for them.

At Craft Warehouse I found the little Scrabble tile pendant that says "Keep Calm and Carry On". (I've seen that phrase as a poster on line and I really like it.) These Scrabble tile pendants seem to be all the rage. Every time I've been in a thrift store and remembered, I've looked for an old Scrabble game so I could use the tiles to make my own pendants. But apparently Scrabble is not a game that you get rid of very often or everyone else already has the same idea. I haven't found any yet. So I just went ahead and bought this one. It might be a good reminder to have throughout the holidays. Anna got one with a cat.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

The Blues

Originally, I thought the title for this post should be: What kind of parents are we?

A while ago, Anna asked if she could get blue streaks in her hair. I've always thought that she should be able to wear her hair as she liked (although I will give my unwelcome input often, especially when we can't see her beautiful face) since it is her hair. I pondered the question and said, yes. But that doesn't mean I have to pay for it. So I told her she would have to pay for it.

We inquired with the hair dresser about how much it might cost for a few streaks of blue. It was going to be around $20-30 dollars, plus maybe the cost of the dye, since blue doesn't seem to be a common color to have on hand. To save some money, I told Anna that I would be willing to try to do the streaks at home for her, but she still needed to buy the dye. Also, she would be doing it at her own risk since I am no hair dresser.

One day we went to the beauty supply store and asked the person there what she would recommend (and as Anna said, of course she recommended the more expensive dye). Since Anna's hair is dark, we weren't sure if it would work.

One night I put the gloves on, read the directions and we dove right in. It didn't work very well. Anna's hair had a slight blue tint, but it really just blended in with the rest of her hair. The directions did say you might need to bleach dark hair first. But we thought we would try it without. Nope, didn't work.

Round two: I bought some hair dye at the store to bleach Anna's hair first. I put the gloves on again and went back to work. Here's what we ended up with.

Round three: Reapply the blue dye and see what happens.

It didn't turn out how Anna had hoped it would. She was looking for a dark royal type of blue. She ended up with a robin's egg type of blue. She was quite upset about it, even though we did have a laugh about it (o.k. mom had a laugh. What kind of parent am I?) I actually thought it was a pretty color, but not Anna. She wanted to try doing the blue again.

After two or three attempts, I was ready to set aside the gloves. But Frank took up the cause and did three or four more blue hair dyeing attempts (why didn't I take a picture of that?). The last time they left the dye in for three times the amount of time it said to leave it in. It did end up more blue, but despite the fact that it is suppose to be permanent, it is washing out each time she washes her hair.

Robin's egg blue is a very pretty color, don't you think?

Monday, October 4, 2010


I tried the rusting fabric technique. I just wrapped some fabric soaked in vinegar and water around rusty nails, screws and an old tool. I like how they turned out. Before I use them in a piece, I want to try coating them with some matte medium to make sure they don't continue rusting. I haven't gotten around to doing that yet.

Although I like these pieces, I don't think I will be using them in my "play-along" piece for the Rusty challenge. I have something else started for that. But I do have an idea for these pieces.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

What is it?

Is it modern art? Is it trash? It's creative wrapping for a present because . . .
it's Frank's birthday today! Since he thinks birthdays are just like any other day, then he should have no problem with me announcing to the world that he is 43 years old, and posting his picture (this is from last year).

Happy Birthday, Frank!

Saturday, October 2, 2010

4Q Gallery

There is a new gallery in town. Downtown Boise, that is. Vicki Stevenson asked me to be a part of this cooperative gallery of local artists. I am happy for the opportunity to show my art in Boise. 

This past week, I've been helping her to get the work hung on the walls, since I have some experience with that.  The gallery opened yesterday and is located in the Idaho Building on the basement level (that's why the pictures aren't the best).  There are several rooms to explore. The gallery will be open until the end of the year, but that is all that is planned for now.  Hours will be Thurs.-Sat. 11-6 p.m. and Sun. 12-4 p.m.  This coming Thursday, it will also be open late until 9 p.m. for First Thursday.

Go to the Idaho Building
Go down the stairs to the right of the elevators.
Enter space.
Explore rooms.