Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Merry Christmas!

Christmas altarpiece, designed by Matthew Whitney, being installed

Had a wonderful Christmas Eve. Started the day at a birthday brunch for Matthew Whitney's wife Heather in the morning, started baking some cookies in the afternoon, went to another friends' house for some appetizers and desserts in the early evening, then off to Christmas Eve caroling and festival service at church. The service at church was wonderful, and Father John's sermon was inspired. Felt all warm and fuzzy about being blessed with such wonderful friends and such a loving church family.

Now I'm off to start our Christmas morning festivities. Wishing you all a very
Merry Christmas!

Friday, December 21, 2007

Illustration Friday: Horizon

"Horizon", acrylic/collage on illustration board, 4"x 6" (mounted on 8"x 10"), framed in a simple black frame, available in my Etsy store

The topic for Illustration Friday this week is "horizon", very appropriate for this time of year, when we all seem to look toward the horizon of the new year. It also happens to be the shortest day of the year today, so we look to the horizon for more hours of sunlight as the earth swings back toward the longest day.

I've been thinking about 2008 a lot lately, about what I want to accomplish in it and what sort of year I want to create. There's the usual litany of "lose weight, exercise more, watch less TV, blah, blah, blah…", and I will attempt to do these things. But I'm more concerned with how I see my art life developing in the coming year. And, as I mentioned in my previous post, I'm interested in changing how I approach buying food.

I'm so interested in changing how I approach buying food that I've started a new blog today in which I plan to document and discuss my adventures in creating a more local and seasonal diet. I hope you'll check it out and join the adventure. :)

My thoughts about my art life basically fall into two categories: creating and marketing.

I want to be more creative. By this I mean that I want to allow myself to create more often, and to explore and experiment with new (to me) techniques and media, like printmaking and maybe even encaustics; and with ones that I used to do but have let fall by the wayside, like bookmaking and photography. I would also like to explore writing, and maybe take up knitting/crocheting too. And I want to create more often, and more deeply - stop getting in my own way. It seems like there's too much to do and so little time. But somehow I manage to find time to get sucked into a couple of hours of HGTV and/or the Food Network every day (thus the "watch less TV" mentioned above).

As for marketing, I want to create a good marketing plan, and stick to it! I'm usually pretty good about creating the plan. It's carrying out the plan that needs a little work. It usually starts off okay, but then I get bogged down in fear and second guessing and it grinds to a halt.

In the past few days I've come across a couple of great blogs to help me with many of these issues, so I thought I'd share them here with you.

Steve Pavlina's Personal Development for Smart People - so many great little essays on so many topics, from "How to Give Up Coffee" to "30 Days to Success" to "How to be an Early Riser" to "Living Congruently", and the list goes on. So much to explore.

Wishful Thinking, a blog by poet and business coach Mark McGuinness in the UK. Just great stuff on living the creative life.

And I found them through Accidental Creative, another great site about being a working creative.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Favorite Books of 2007

Last year at about this time, I listed some of my favorite reads of 2006. So, here are some of my favorite reads for 2007.

A Brief History of the Dead by Kevin Brockmeier
Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen
Lies of Locke Lamora by Scott Lynch - what a great ride!
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling - so sad to see it end
Twilight by Stephanie Meyer - first of three books in the Twilight Saga, a young adult vampire series

Mystery/Thriller series
•I've already written a post about how much I loved All Mortal Flesh, the latest installment in the Clare Fergusson & Russ Van Alstyne mysteries by Julia Spencer Fleming. The next book in the series isn't due out until June of 2008. It is so hard to wait!

I discovered a couple of British mystery writers this year that I am enjoying very much.
•Philip Dryden mysteries by Jim Kelly, starting with The Water Clock
•Merrily Watkins mysteries by Phil Rickman - these officially begin with The Wine of Angels, but I couldn't find anything earlier than The Cure of Souls, which is the third book I think, but Rickman fills in the necessary background details in subtle ways so it's worked out okay. Now I'm reading the Prayer of the Night Shepherd.

Art Inspiration - there are a lot of these books out there, and so many are just not good. For that reason, I've taken to trying to check them out of the library instead of buying them. These two I bought while I was reading the library copies because I know I will return to them again and again.
Creative Authenticity by Ian Roberts - so many YES! moments
Poemcrazy by Susan G. Wooldridge - sends me scrambling for a notebook and pen because her words make me just have to write something, even though I do not claim to be a writer

Animal, Vegetable, Miracle by Barbara Kingsolver – eye-opening account of just how messed up our (U.S.) food system really is. Very educational, but also very enjoyable, as Kingsolver and her family write about their year of eating only local food. Full of anecdotes, science, politics and recipes. Makes me want to focus on supporting the local food movement, and almost makes me wish I had a garden of my own (though I wouldn't know a thing about what to do with it). This book is providing the headliner for my new year's resolutions - BUY LOCAL!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Early December activities

Me in the doorway of my studio during the open studio (I'm talking our choirmaster Sheila, but you can't see her).

L-R: Debi & me, hanging one of the textile pieces for "Silence"; new Advent altarpiece ("Into Silence", approx. 13' x 5') and decorations; view along one wall of the exhibit

view into the expanded space of the gallery

These are photos of some of the things I've been working on the past couple of weeks. Unfortunately, no photos from the artists' reception (sorry! my husband is usually the photographer, but his camera's batteries died), but I am looking into whether anybody else got photos of the event. If you did, and you're reading this, let me know!

It's been a lot of work, and a lot of socializing, and has resulted in me shutting down and getting reset to my factory setting of Introvert in a big way. So, I've not really been posting about all this great stuff, or really having much contact with anyone but my husband and my cats the past few days. I've gotten to my studio to paint (after an absence of nearly 3 weeks) for a couple of hours yesterday and today, and that's helping too.

Let me leave you with this great photo of Marlowe in his little shelter in the snow (taken the evening of Dec. 1st after we got home from the open studio). Our cats are indoor kitties, but Marlowe likes to go out on our balcony sometimes, and just BEGS to go out there when it snows.

Friday, December 07, 2007

Little Things

"Little Bird", monotype, 9" x 6", ©2007 Sold
- fastest sale on Etsy (for me) ever! -

This week's prompt for Illustration Friday is "little things". This little bird is a monotype I made using a gelatin plate, a fun method that I really want to explore more. But I haven't done anything with it since this little guy which I made a few months ago.

In addition to a visual response, this prompt also reflects the state of my mind, and the never-ending to-do list that's currently residing there, which is full of little (and not-so-little) things such as:
• clean the house
• make a grocery list
• Christmas shopping
• Christmas cards
• research new car
• get back to painting (I spoke too soon, Tracy)
• make a marketing plan for 2008
• make pay-it-forward pieces
• update various sites and blogs with various recent activities
• where the heck did I put those photo mailers? (see first item!)
• e-mail many people
• etc. etc. etc.

After the open studio on Saturday (which got almost completely snowed out), and the artists' reception last night, and all that went into making them happen, what I really feel like I need today is a day off. At least part of one. So, after I sign off here, I think I'm going to grab a book and head over to a coffee house so I'm not tempted by the to-do list and read for a couple of hours.

Psst! - More little things, like the bird above and these tiny paintings, can be found in my Etsy shop too. Just in time for Christmas!


Tuesday, November 27, 2007

...and it's not even December yet!

It's been a busy week so far (yes, I know it's only Tuesday).

Went to California last week to visit with family for Thanksgiving. Had a pretty good visit, with a few notable exceptions. The biggest being that my maternal grandmother passed away just before we got there. She was a really great lady, and she will be sorely missed. Especially by her husband of 65 years, my grandfather.

After returning home. on Saturday night we went to a Baroque concert at our church. It was awesome! It's a new group that includes our oh-so-talented organist/choir director Sheila Bristow and they call themselves Concerto Baroque. They recorded the performance, so I'm hoping there will be a CD available soon.

Concerto Baroque

Yesterday and today have been taken up with a lot of getting ready for my open studio this Saturday, and with getting the gallery at church ready to install the new exhibition "Silence" which also opens this weekend, with a reception for the artists December 6th. Besides getting the actual space ready (we've had to expand the gallery space to accommodate all the wonderful art we received), I've also begun posting about each of the artists on the church's artsblog. I'm about half done, and plan to have the rest done by Friday. Lots of really great art, so check it out!

I haven't even started to think about Christmas shopping yet!

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Newsletter 2007

"Green Silence", acrylic/collage painting on 36"x 36" canvas, ©2007

The StudioTenshi Newsletter
The art of Angela Wales Rockett: Highlights of 2007

Dear Friends and Patrons,

I think the biggest news of 2007 is that I finally have a studio! Up to a few months ago, my studio has always been the second bedroom in our apartment, a space that was getting progressively more cramped the more I worked. Now I have a large space with great windows and plenty of room to move around in thanks to the Episcopal Church of the Redeemer in Kenmore, Washington where my studio is now located. To celebrate this, I've invited a few local artist friends of mine to share in a group open studio from 2-6pm on Saturday, December 1st. It should be a fun afternoon of art and refreshments, and I hope to see you there.

2007 also saw me trying my hand at curating. I've curated one solo exhibit and three juried group exhibits this year for the CR Gallery, also in the Episcopal Church of the Redeemer. The latest show is work exploring the theme of silence and will be on display beginning December 2nd. It's been very exciting, and a lot of hard but gratifying work, to bring wonderful artwork together and get to know great people in the process. I look forward to curating many more exhibits in the future.

Other big news is that my artwork has finally made it to New York City! I was juried into membership in the Square Inch Gallery in Manhattan just a couple of months ago. Their concept is "A Manhattan Apartment Gallery with Manhattan Apartment Sized Art", so it's primarily smaller pieces. They have a reception every second Thursday from 7-9pm, and are open by appointment.

One of my paintings, Veil I, juried into being included the 2007-2008 Daniel Smith Catalog of Artists' Materials (p. 204). Apparently this is a very competitive contest, with thousands of artists applying and only a few being chosen. And my painting was one of them!

Though you can still find my artwork on my website at http://www.studiotenshi.com, you also can find it at http://angelarockett.boundlessgallery.com. I just discovered Boundless Gallery this past month, and it has some very cool tools that I'm still playing with. One of the coolest is viewing art in an actual room! That's right, you can upload photos of the space where you want to display the art and see what it will look like before you buy. Check it out, and see how great my art would look in your room! :) Boundless also makes it easy for me to offer coupons and specials on my work, so keep an eye out for those too. In fact, I'll be posting one for the holidays.

That's about all for now. I plan on writing newsletters quarterly, and in the meantime you can always keep up with what I'm doing by reading my blog at http://ryhopewood.blogspot.com/.

Thank you all for your continuing support. Best wishes to you and yours for a wonderful holiday season.

Yours truly,

Angela Wales Rockett

Getting ready for new art exhibit

Yesterday was a very busy day of getting ready for "Silence", the next exhibit at the CR Gallery. While the arts committee worked on getting the space ready, most of the local artists dropped off their work in the morning. It was really great to finally meet them and see their beautiful work in person! Unfortunately in all the buzz and excitement, I forgot to take pictures of all the activity yesterday.

I am really looking forward to this show. (I look forward to all the shows I've curated, but the excitement just keeps growing with each new show.) We had a great response from all over the country, and a few from other countries too. Narrowing it down to what we could fit on the walls was a difficult. We've had to expand the gallery space in order to accommodate all the wonderful art that the jury accepted, and that involved a lot of drilling into poured concrete. Not fun, but luckily I didn't have to do that myself. :)

I'll be posting on each artist individually in the coming weeks, but to give you an idea of the fine caliber of work we'll be exhibiting, check out these links:
Jeremy Fahringer, Bridgette Guerzon Mills, Andrea Pratt, Dayton Knipher, Kathy Thaden, and, well, me
(There are more artists, but I unfortunately I don't have websites for all of them.)

I'm leaving tomorrow to visit with family in Southern California for Thanksgiving. When I get back, look for more information about the show and the artists.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Desert print from Andrea!

Desert, 8"x8" print mounted on cradled panel by Andrea Pratt

Just a quick note to say I got my print from Andrea today! I love it! Such a wonderful, beautiful painting. And the print turned out so well, which made me very happy since somebody else is lucky enough to have the original on their wall. Yay!

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Poppy Print

Poppy I

I forgot that I was also waiting for this art. I was recently entered into a contest at ImageKind to receive a small print of one of my own paintings, ImageKind would choose which, and I won! Ironically I was notified I'd be getting the print the day after the actual painting sold. Anyway, it arrived today and I am very impressed! I'd never seen one of their prints before and the image quality and color is great.

Now I have to decide whether I should keep it, sell it, or give it to someone as a Christmas gift.

I haven't really done much with my ImageKind account, but I really should do a lot more. They have so much to offer, including giclee prints of various sizes and many framing options. And I have now seen firsthand that their quality is excellent. I guess that's going on my list of to-do items. I'll keep you posted.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Pay it Forward

Wow, it's been a long time, hasn't it. Well, I've got a few things I want to tell you about, so I'll be posting more often this week.

First, I'm very excited because I will soon be receiving art from 3 of my favorite artist friends. Peter Birch will be sending me a package of his promotional materials from Wales! I bought a print of a wonderful, but sold, painting from Andrea Pratt which should be here later this week! Oh happy mail box!

And finally, I got lucky and managed to be one of the first 3 people to comment on Tracy Helgeson's "pay it forward" post, so sometime in the next year, I will receive a painting from her!

In exchange for Tracy's painting, I now continue this project. Here are the rules for Pay It Forward (via Deanna, etc):

I will send a handmade gift to the first 3 people who leave a comment on my blog requesting to join this PIF exchange. I don’t know what that gift will be yet and you may not receive it tomorrow or next week, but you will receive it within 365 days, that is my promise! The only thing you have to do in return is pay it forward by making the same promise on your blog.

When you leave your comment, please also do one of two things: leave your post address or e-mail it to me.

Friday, October 05, 2007

Gazing eastward & new gallery

"Eastern Gaze", acrylic/collage on canvas, 12" x 12", ©2007 SOLD!

I just completed this painting yesterday, then packed it up (along with 7 other small paintings) to ship to a gallery in NEW YORK this morning! It's a new artists' cooperative gallery, and I know there's all sorts of back and forth as to whether artist run galleries are good for the artist's career or not, but I just fell in love with the concept, and the location, of this gallery, so I decided to apply. And I'm very happy that I juried in.

The gallery is called the Square Inch Gallery, and the concept is that it's a Manhattan apartment art gallery selling Manhattan apartment sized art. And the location, well, you know, it's New York City. Don't need to add much to that.

click on image to see larger version

This is the announcement for the inaugural opening reception Thursday, October 18th. If you're in the Manhattan area, I hope you'll stop by and check it out! You can also learn more about the gallery and the artists who exhibit there by visiting the website.

Friday, September 28, 2007

"date" night

Harlie in Wade's suitcase as he tries to pack. Clearly she doesn't think this is a good idea.

My husband is out of town this weekend visiting family and friends in Vegas. Though my husband is the love of my life, I look forward to these occasional weekends alone. I find that it's a good time to gather in all the loose bits and refocus. I also usually plan a date night with just me. Tonight it's putting on my pajamas, opening a nice white wine, having a lovely fish and pasta dinner, and popping a movie into the DVD player. I've got some really good chocolate from Seattle Chocolate Company to wash it all down with too. :)

Today has been a great day. I dropped of my painting at the gallery, then I took some of my paintings over to my hairdresser's salon because she wanted to see how they'd look on display there. Her salon is called Salon Rouge, and red is the theme, so we thought my poppy paintings might look good there. And they do! (I'll try to get photos posted later - forgot my camera today.) Not only did she display two of my paintings, she bought another one too!

And even with all this wonderfulness, I've really been looking forward to my "date" tonight. With all routine out the window, I can newly appreciate the simple pleasures of a good dinner and a relaxing evening at home. I hope I can take this appreciation with me when routine, and my husband, returns.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

2007 Northwest Fine Arts Competition

Blue Echo, acrylic/collage on canvas, 36" x 24", ©2006

I just received word that my painting, Blue Echo, has been accepted into the 2007 Northwest Fine Arts Competition at the Phinney Center Gallery! The show opens with a reception next Friday, October 5, 7–9pm, and will remain on exhibit until October 26th. I'm looking forward to seeing the other art in the exhibit, and hopefully meeting some of the artists too. If you're in the area, please stop by!

Update: I posted this yesterday, and then this morning I found out that the theme for Illustration Friday this week is "the blues". With all the blue here, I had to post it to IF too. I love the color blue, and often use it in my work. And of course, like many artists, I also suffer from the blues from time to time. In small doses, it can actually be an aid to creativity, as I mentioned in my previous "Blue" post.

Friday, September 07, 2007

more studio thoughts…

I've found my dream studio! Well, in a book at least. I scanned the above photo from a book called Pottery Barn Work Spaces (Pottery Barn Design Library) which I checked out from the library looking for ideas on how to organize my work spaces (oddly enough). I just love this space! The brightness, the wonderful wood floors, the huge work island in the middle, and the fact that it's a cottage which I assume is in the artist's backyard. That's what I want!

But, until then, my studio works very well, and I'm slowly learning how to work at home again too. I've started by making little paintings. I bought a little portable palette with little jars so I can bring some of my acrylics home with me so I'm not limited to watercolors. And I've brought home more of my collage materials too. My aim is to make a little painting every day, and so far I'm 3 for 3. These are each about 4" x 6" on paper.
Sept. 4

Sept. 5

Sept. 6

I'm still having some trouble with quieting and getting to that really deep place where my art comes from when I'm in my studio, but these little paintings take me there. So hopefully these will help with my big pieces too.

In other news, my back is better. I went to a new chiropractor last Sunday, and between his adjustments and the yoga stretches he assigned me so practice twice a day, I've been feeling much better. Last night I had a bit of a relapse (I think I was on the computer too long), but my back seems to be doing okay now. It's amazing how the pain in my back affected everything though! Since Sunday, I've had more energy and a brighter outlook on life than I've had in a while.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Thoughts on the artist's life…

I have a confession. Having been in my new studio space for about a month and a half now, I've discovered that it isn't all perfect. Oh, it's great and I'm not giving it up, but it does come with some unforeseen… complications I guess is the word I'm looking for. The one most prevalent today is that when I leave my studio to come home for the afternoon, I want that time to be somehow productive (especially if I've only spent a short time in the studio). But my brain seems to take the trip home as a cue to shut down. So now I have to figure out some way to combat that. Any ideas?

Another issue is that almost all my supplies are there, so if I have an idea at home, it has to wait until I go back to the studio. I do have sketchbooks and watercolors at home, but that's not always enough to realize the idea's I have. So somehow I have to create some sort of emergency creating kit to store at home (and hope my brain agrees to work when I'm there).

And lastly, I kinda miss home. It really is good to be able to leave and go to a place that is specifically for painting. When I get there, it's easier and easier to get into painting mode because that is all I do there. Sort of Pavlovian, I guess. But there are days that I miss painting at home, with the cats and all the other comforts home provides.

Actually, one more thing. Standing on concrete for long stretches of time is hard on the back! It started to bother me a bit last week, then on Saturday I moved a few heavy things around and my back has been in pretty constant pain ever since. I bought some anti-fatigue mats for the studio floor, and I have a massage appointment on Friday. I can't wait!

Oh, the image is a painting (well, underpainting) I started today. It's another landscape experiment (this one is from a photograph I took while visiting my friends' farm in Oregon). The main canvas I'm working on is nearly done and I hope to be able to post that by next week. So I close with a benefit of the new space - room to work on more that one project at a time! :)

Friday, August 17, 2007


Desert Sky, acrylic on canvas, 24"x 12", ©2006

I'm feeling a little blue and lonely today. Even painting didn't really do anything for me. Just one of those days I guess.

It's funny, though. As much as I'd rather be happy and not feel bad, once I get past the worst of it (usually marked by a good cry), I feel quiet and still. And I can sense deeper waters. Not because depressed is deep - it's not really, it's just depressed - but because in the stillness that follows it I feel able to slow down and explore where I usually would just skim over (even when I'm trying to slow down and pay attention).

Now that I think about it, these days of unexplainable mood drops often seem to follow a period of too much skimming and not enough going deep. Must remember that.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Call to Artists: Silence

Hey, all you artists! Yes, I'm looking at you. :)

I've just posted a new call to artists over on Redeemer's artsblog, and here it is:

CR Gallery at the Episcopal Church of the Redeemer invites artists to submit artwork.
Deadline: October 26th, 2007

“(Since) nothing that can be seen can be God…then to find God we must pass beyond everything that can be seen and enter into darkness. Since nothing that can be heard is God, to find Him we must enter into silence.” —Thomas Merton

The transcendent power of art can be a means to entering that silence. CR Gallery seeks works of art that explore the theme of silence for a juried exhibition.

Where: Episcopal Church of the Redeemer, 6211 NE 182nd Street, Kenmore, Washington

When: December 2, 2007 – February 2, 2008

Opening Reception: Thursday, December 6th, 6 – 8pm

How: Submit up to 3 jpegs via e-mail to arts@redeemer-kenmore.org. Please include your name, contact information, and a few words about your work. Also include title, medium, framed dimensions, and retail price of each image submitted. Submission deadline is October 26th. The work will then be juried and acceptance notifications and delivery instructions will be sent out via e-mail by November 2nd. For work that must be shipped, all shipping costs will be the responsibility of the artist.

Cost: $15 (USD) entry fee, for up to 3 images, payable via PayPal.

Artwork must be ready to hang, preferably from a wire. Photographs and artwork on paper must be framed with a wire attached for hanging. Canvases do not need to be framed, but the sides should be painted, either a solid color or as a continuation of the image, in order to give a neat, professional appearance, and must have a wire attached to the stretchers for hanging purposes.

Artwork can be for sale. The gallery will direct buyers directly to the artist and take no commission.

The gallery will take care of advertising and publicity, and artists with accepted work will receive postcard announcements to distribute themselves. Please have high quality digital images available for possible use in publications and postcards.

In addition to being displayed in the nave gallery, accepted artists will also be featured on the church’s website.

For ease of transport, and so we get to meet you, we are especially seeking artists in the area of the Puget Sound, but this call is open to all artists over 18.

If you have any questions, you can comment here or you can e-mail me at arts@redeemer-kenmore.org.

Please feel free to share this with any other artists you think might be interested.

Happy Creating!

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Tiny Trees

Two Trees, acrylic & collage on canvas, 4"x 4", ©2007

Pink Tree, acrylic on canvas, 4"x 4", ©2007

I've been playing some with landscapes and color. So far just a couple of tiny ones, but I think they're fun and I wanted to share them here. I've also put them up in my Etsy shop, which I have been woefully neglecting the past few months.

Thursday, August 09, 2007

First painting from new studio!

As of yet untitled, this is the first painting to have been completed in my new studio space! It's acrylic and collage on a 24" x 24" canvas and I just finished it today. At least, I think it's finished. I might look at it in a couple of days and decide it needs something added, but it feels done to me now.

Though it took me a couple of weeks to get settled in, I'm really enjoying the new space. I can more fully concentrate there, and having room to move around has been great. It's also allowed me to work on more than one painting at a time, so I hope to be posting more paintings soon.

Thursday, August 02, 2007

New Daniel Smith catalog!

The new Daniel Smith catalog of artists' materials came out this past week and I'm in it!!!! They have a juried call for artists every year to include in their catalogs, and they chose one of my paintings! It's right there on page 204!

Veil I, acrylic/collage on canvas, 24"x30", ©2006

Sunday, July 29, 2007

My husband's new podcast: Writing For Pay

My husband Wade really is so clever. He has just finished uploading his first podcast episode about writing for a living in which he interviews professional writers in all sorts of fields about their writing and how they got where they are. You can check it out at writingforpay.org.

Friday, July 27, 2007

Illustration Friday: Moon

Celtic Moon, acrylic/collage on illustration board, 6" x 4", ©2001

I made this small piece a few years ago, and it was my first really successful collage, and it was one of the first pieces I sold.

If I have time, maybe I'll make a new piece for this week's Illustration Friday theme "moon," (it's such an inviting theme for me) but the next several days promise to be very full. My dad and one of my little sisters are coming to visit! I haven't seen either of them since we moved up here 3+ years ago. They're arriving on Sunday afternoon and leaving on Wednesday evening, and neither of them has ever been to Seattle before so we have a lot to show them.

Monday, July 23, 2007

To Potter or not to Potter…

Delivered by owl Saturday morning!

Am having one of those days where all sorts of things sound like a good idea to do, and I'm having trouble deciding which course of action to follow. I have a painting in the works that just refuses to be done in time to enter it into the competition for which it was intended. I think it will eventually turn out to be a good painting, but right now I'm not happy with it as it's making me feel like I need to got back to art school and learn something. And hammering at it hasn't helped much, so, I've decided to take a break from it and the studio today and… well, that's what I'm trying to decide. With so many options, choosing none of them and reading Harry Potter all day is very tempting. I'm pretty sure I won't do that. At least not all day. :)

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Illustration Friday: Discovery

Monarda Punctata, acrylic/collage on canvas, 12"x 9", ©2007

Recently, I made the discovery that I am longing to add more paintings of the natural world to my repertoire. I created this small painting a couple of weeks ago, and haven't had a chance to do more than sketch a few flowers since then, but now that I'm set up in the new studio I'm hoping to do more soon. Drawing and painting from life really helps to balance out all the abstract work that I do, and even helps me to have more and better abstract visions. I haven't painted flowers since last year's poppy paintings, and it felt good to get back to it.

Monday, July 16, 2007

New Studio! Part 3

I actually put paint to canvas in my new studio today! I still have some things to move from my old space to my new one, but everything necessary to the painting process is pretty much there - paints, brushes, canvas, easel, water, and some tunes (by the way, the new Azam Ali CD is awesome!). The photo is how the space looked when I left today, ready for me to paint again tomorrow.

It felt really good to be there, but it is going to take some getting used to. I figure I'll have to ease into it and build up to staying for longer periods of time. I was there for about 3 hours today, but at least half of that was moving stuff in and arranging it.

I love it!

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Artists' Reception: The Spirit Unleashed

The opening reception for Speaking in Tongues: The Spirit Unleashed went very well, and despite the oppressive heat was a very lively event! Lots of people attended (including 7 of the artists) lots of great conversations, and great music too. Wish you could have been there. You can see more pictures on Redeemer's Flickr page, and on you can read more about the artists on Redeemer's artsblog.

This exhibit will be on display in Redeemer's nave through September 7th. If you're in the area and would like to see it, please contact me and we can set up an appointment.

Now I have a brief break from curating activities. Then, our next show will be a solo show by local artist Darel Grothaus and that will go up in late September, and soon I'll be sending out a call to artists for our Advent juried group exhibit. The theme for that will be "silence" or "into silence" or something like that, so let that idea play around in your brains and check back for the official call. You've got over 3 months to create something new or realize that something you already have would be perfect to submit.

For the near future though, my energy will be directed toward getting moved into my new studio, and back to focusing on my own art.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

New Studio! Part 2

concrete floor in studio sans adhesive!

After a couple of ill-advised and failed attempts, victory over the ugly black adhesive residue on my new studio's floor was achieved! Many thanks to Hertz Equipment Rental in downtown Bothell, especially Rich. On his recommendation, yesterday I rented this machine, a floor buffer with a scraper attachment, and it worked!

Our friend Ron did the actual work. He did a great job and I am so grateful he was in town. He's an itinerant musician. Really. He leads a totally nomadic existence. He's been all over the country, and was recently traveling the UK, with his band, Morgansorange. He's been friends with my husband for a couple of decades, and when I first met him back in '94, he owned a record store in Las Vegas. Now he makes his own music, and in between gigs, he looks for odd jobs (like this one) to pad his wallet, so it worked out perfectly.

I should be moved in (at least partially) and painting in the new space by next week! Yay!!!!!

Monday, July 09, 2007

Speaking in Tongues: The Spirit Unleashed

(couldn't capture it all in one photograph because we're using both sides of the entrance, so got it in two)

The new exhibit is up! It took a couple of hours to arrange the work to my satisfaction, but it was worth it. I have to admit to being a little worried that the art might be too disparate to look good together, but it actually turned out really well. If you're in the Puget Sound area, we'd love to see you at the artists' reception, which will also feature a musical performance by organist Sheila Bristow and violinist Laurie Kempen, at the Episcopal Church of the Redeemer, 6211 NE 182nd Street, Kenmore, WA 98028, on Thursday, July 12th, 6–8pm. To learn more about the 10 artists whose work is on display, please visit Redeemer's arts & music blog.