New work and my studio

Encaustic Mixed Media
  I know I haven't been posting a lot but I have been busy enjoying the summer!
Here is my latest project. I originally had an image of a whisper in my head as I did the drawing but as the painting started to come together I had a different vision of portraying the implications of whispering, the damage it can cause and how it can take so many forms. In texting, facebook, etc... and how easily it all can be misinterpreted. Needless to say I took the cue from my teenage daughter.
 I have also been working in my new art space at home. This photo is the first glimpse of it. I didn't even bother to clean up my workspace. I grabbed the camera as soon as I was done with my project.

 This is my messy skillet with my colored wax and brushes. I keep meaning to clean off the skillet but then I think what if I want to use that color again? So I just leave it!
 But I did clean up everything for this photo. You can see that this room has an awesome view of the farm. It's so nice to have this inspiring view to look at while I work.
I found part of a robin's egg laying in the grass the other day. And I still see my baby robins around the yard. The parents are still taking care of them too! They love hanging out in the serviceberry bush eating the berries.
 But back to the studio...I picked up some book cases to support the glass table top and they are working out quite nicely. I have a lot of storage and I can display some of my things in them too.
 This is my seat though! I haven't gotten around to finding a chair yet so this will have to do for the time being. I tend to stand when I work anyways so I'm in no hurry.
And the 4th Friday show in June went really well. I am definitely going to enter work for July and it's even inspired my husband to get his studio organized so he can begin painting again too.
 I was excited to see that one of my pieces was chosen to be on the card advertising the show for next month! I know it's sort of dumb but I was really happy about it.
I am off for a trip up north soon and will be completely unplugged for almost a week. No phone, no computer..nothing but nature hikes, swimming, canoeing, and good friends and family.
See you soon!


Magic Metal Journals

Yesterday I ran the first of three summer art workshops for kids at my home. We made Magic Metal Journals which was a lesson plan that I found on the Blick Art website. It seemed like such a cool project especially since it was something that the kids could use afterwards.
In the first photo the kids are embossing their foil covers with drawings, patterns and other designs.
 The journals were bound with colorful wire and beads were added for decoration.
My basement is very dark and while I added lots of light for the budding artists to see their work it just wasn't enough for my camera. I hate using the flash so sorry for the blurry photos!

 The kids added color to the foil using water soluble wax pastels. I had never heard of these before! They stick really well to the metal surface and when you add water they work like watercolors. Of course I heard "wax" and thought of how I might try using them with my own artwork!

 Here are a few of the finished masterpieces!

All in all I thought it was a great success! The kids were so creative and willing to dive right in. It was so fun to see them working away. I am definitely looking forward to the next workshop.



A couple of posts ago I mentioned that I had something fun to announce. So here it is!
I actually entered my work into a gallery show. I found out about it from a friend through facebook, of all things, and thought I'd give it a shot. I have never ever even attempted to enter my work into a gallery before. Mostly because I only made functional pottery and comissioned portraits. Plus I have no idea how to submit art to a gallery. Lucky for me Starline Gallery in the small town of Harvard had open submissions for their 4th Fridays in June. I submitted five pieces and two of them made it! I think it's a little ironic that the two that made it in were the two I made at the last workshop I attended with Bridgette.
I really have no idea what to expect next friday but I get weird little butterflies in my stomach when I think about it. It should be fun and my hubby and a few of my friends are going too. I am looking forward to it!
This week I am also hosting the first of three art workshops I am offering this summer to kids around the neighborhood. I plan on doing art projects with them by setting up a space in my basement for about ten kids. I have three different dates with three different projects planned. Hopefully it will all run smoothly. This is a first for me too!


...and then they were gone

About an hour after the update I posted yesterday I heard some peeping right outside my kitchen window. I was happy to see that it was one of the baby robins that had been missing from the nest earlier in the day. I took a quick photo out the back door which you can see a couple photos down. The little birdy in the mulch by the basement window grate.
 After I took the photo I went by the front door to see the others in the nest and there was only one left! Instead of crouching down in the nest he took one look at me stood up tall and flew away! I am so happy I had my camera with me and the photo above is his very first flight from the nest.
 I was so worried that he would fly right into the street but he made it to the tree in my front yard. He was really hidden in the leaves but I was able to get one photo of him hiding in there.
 This is the little guy I heard peeping outside my kitchen window and when I came back he had made it to the fireplace on my patio. The whole time mama robin was chirping loudly to him from the top of the fence next to the farmer's yard.

 I love this photo! Look at how proud he looks! Unfortunately when he took off he ended up smacking into the fence. But he eventually made it to the vines covering the top of the fence and hid in there chirping for mom for awhile.

I am very sad that they are gone and I am still shocked at how fast it all happened! I really hope that they are safe because we had a bad rain storm last night. I keep walking out my front door expecting to see them there. I really miss them. I was thinking about saving the nest but it's really covered in poop so I will be throwing it away!
 But I still heard mama robin chirping outside this morning.
At least I'd like to believe it was her.

New work

Rama Is In The Details
encaustic collage

 Here's my latest encaustic work. I tried experimenting with image transfers using magazines this time and it worked beautifully. The diamond shapes on the upper right and the square on the lower left are magazine transfers. I also imbedded a page from an old drawing book and a burned piece of paper. I've been wanting to use this page from the drawing book for a while now but it turns out that this is my least favorite area of the entire painting. I'm not sure why though. Maybe because it stands out too much, I didn't "do" anything over that area so as not to cover up the image but it doesn't seem to fit in with the rest of the painting now.
 These raised dots are probably my favorite though! I love the texture they create. And I tried to add more of a relief, impasto look in the swatch of white to create more interest.
This is a close up of the magazine transfers. I still can't believe how great the details transfer. You can see the dots from the printing process even.


Robins again...

I really wasn't planning on doing another post about the robins so soon but I am truly shocked how fast they are growing! I promise there will be more new encaustic work to show very soon.
I was able to catch a couple snap shots out the window of mommy (or maybe daddy robin) with a big fat worm to feed the youngsters.

 But look how big they are! I can't believe how fast their feathers grew in. I took those other photos a mere four days ago.
All four babies are still in there but they are hard to see. The one in the middle is laying on top of the 4th baby.

They are much more wary of me now and I cannot fool them into opening up their mouths for me anymore either. When they see me now they hunker down and try to hide inside their ever shrinking nest. I have a feeling they will be attempting to leave the nest within the next week. I will miss them!
I'm so glad I took these photos yesterday because today there were only two left in the nest!


Eyes Wide Open

 They really are so ugly and yet so cute at the same time! Their eyes are open now and they are just beginning to get some fluffy down. Whenever they sense movement they pop up very fast straining their heads up with their mouths wide open.
 But if they don't get any food within about 10 seconds...
 they will slowly...
 nod off....
back to sleep to wait for mom or dad to bring them some food.
And boy are mom and dad busy these days. Raising 4 healthy babies is hard work!


New Work

Plus One
This is my new piece that I have been working on the past week or so. But I cannot figure out which way to display it! Normally this is absolutely no problem for me but this one changed as I worked on it. Leave a comment and let me know which way you think it should go!
Just to let you know I began the piece as you see it in the 3rd photo but as I worked on it I put it vertically like in photo number 2.

I really wanted to get the look of chipped paint with this one and I didn't do any collage or image transfers either. This one is essentially my first pure encaustic painting as well as my largest so far at 8"x10". Still small by painting standards but big for me! It took a lot longer than my previous ones but I was really trying to take my time with it...to make it perfect.  Which I found frustrating because I felt the need to go back to this one several times before I thought it was "right." I personally feel a great sense of satisfaction and completion with this painting though now that I consider it done.
And I might have some fun news coming soon but I need to work out the details before I commit here on the blogosphere.


All four babies have hatched! So far so good!
This also means sthat I found my camera cord so I will be posting new work very soon.
Have a splendid Sunday!



Sorry for not posting in awhile but I am currently without my laptop. The one I normally use is actually the school's computer and I had to return it for updating since school is out. They won't keep it all summer though so I am waiting.
This laptop I am on now is a dinosaur! And I cannot find the cord to my camera. Normally I just pop the memory card into my laptop but this computer doesn't have that slot.
So even though I have photos of new art to share it will have to wait a bit.
This is a photoshopped version of one of my pictures that I was trying to make look like a ttv photo. TTV means through the viewfinder. People take pictures with their digital camera through the viewfinder of an old film camera. I forget which kind though, the ones that you have to look down into with the really big viewing area. Can you tell I know next to nothing about photography?!
Well hopefully I will be able to dig up that camera cord soon.
Happy Summer!