Monday, November 28, 2011

New Art Work

recently i did something really fun.
i painted.
i painted some paintings.
large paintings that i put into frames.
it has been almost a year since i have worked on large paintings and it was FUN!
i have missed it.
i worked with large reclaimed frames.
the body of the painting was on mdf - i love to paint on it's smooth surface.
i incorporated layers of color and textures.
i used smooth rocks that i found while walking along the beach.
maybe - as the gray days of winter push in a little heavier on me in the winter -
maybe i can look at these paintings to remind me that summer will eventually return!

Friday, November 18, 2011

More reclaimed frames and Jamal

Have I introduced you to Jamal?

A few years ago, my daughter was out with her friend.
They were driving through the parking lot of the local movie theater.
Lying in the dirt under a tree was a . . .thing.
A human form of sorts.

They stopped the car to investigate.
They found a mannequin - you know the kind -
no head, no arms, and partial legs.

She brought him home.
It was going to be an art project for her.

Instead - he ended up getting dressed up.
The black biking shorts, the rainbow suspenders, the paisley tie . .
the headdress and mask were part of his Halloween costume.

Jamal is a very busy guy -
He has gone on trips with my daughter,
he moves around the house,
he shows up in unexpected places . . .

Doesn't everyone need a Jamal?

Monday, November 14, 2011

Reclaimed Frames

have i told you that i love to work with reclaimed frames?

these are all 8 x 10 frames with canvas boards, paper, three dimensional elements and whatever else feels right.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

I feel so Lazy today!!

I would love to woo you with clever words;
tell you funny stories or share with you the daring adventures I have been on.
If I could - I would.
But what you see is what you get.
Lazy Sues . . .
These are a few that you can find at the Made In Oregon stores.

Now it's back to the paints and brushes . . .after I change the very murky paint water!

Friday, November 4, 2011

Everybody's Working for the Weekend!

New custom mirrors . . .
The weekend is upon us.
quite frankly, i feel like i have earned a weekend.
it was a very long week indeed.
last night we headed off to a certain store that i won't name here to buy lazy susans.
we received a large wholesale order this week and we are preparing for our winter shows.
so off to the large store that won't be named.
we loaded up our cart with all kinds of strange items.
mirror tiles, lazy susans and items that could be used for display items.
and did i say lazy susans?
over 30 of them. . .
if you ever want to spur on a conversation with total strangers,
 just load up your cart in a store with 30 lazy susans!
i guarantee - total strangers will stop to chat.

so what are the weekend plans?
for my friday night plans - my daughter and i will attend the play "anne frank" at her high school.
there will be lots of painting - (did i say 30 lazy susans?)
there will be lots of eating - a breakfast out with a friend in the morning on saturday and then dinner family in the evening.
and then for a little variety - i think i will paint some more!
who says i don't know how to live it up on the weekend?

Thursday, November 3, 2011

WOW! How Long Has It Been?

Some new pieces created with reclaimed picture frames, paper, ink and acrylic paints. Measure at 11 X 17 each.

So you have your favorite blogs that you frequently visit.
You pop in every couple of days - and in some cases, every day.
And then - you notice there is not a new post.
You check in again - still no new post.
Days go by . . .weeks. . . a month . . .

Are you kidding me?
Do they not understand that this is important to you?

Ahem - yeah - it's been over a month for me.
I feels so guilty.
I figured no one would be visiting me since I haven't posted in so long - but it appears that people keep dropping by.
Which of course makes me feel even more guilty.

I knew that it had been a while since I had posted - but over a month???
 Good grief.
I promise - I will be more understanding of other bloggers in the future.

And if you look back over my "blogging history" - I think the same thing happened right about this time last year.
Obviously, this is a crazy time for me.
I found myself in a situation where I have not been able to keep all of the balls in the air.
Something had to give.
This and my Facebook and a few other "time sucks" like that were among the things that were neglected.

 And what has been keeping so busy?
Well . . .
my day job has ramped up to a whole new level and has been ridiculously busy - early mornings and late evenings;
we have picked up another wholesale customer and the wholesale accounts that we already have are ramping up for the holidays placing bigger than usual orders;
we had a great sale over in Sisters, Oregon the beginning of October;
it was a great sale - almost too great - it really wiped out our inventory;
we are frantically working to rebuild our inventory;
we are juggling family, business, work, and life in general;

it's a crazy ride - but well worth it.
and now we are preparing for the holidays! how did that happen?
but there is no denying it -
the seasons have changed, the rain is starting to move in, the chill is in the air
time has marched forward

oh - and one more thing that has been wonderful and taking up some of our time . . .
Meet Redford.

An amazing labradoodle that we found through a doggie foster family. He is about 5 years old and quite possibly the perfect dog.
Aside from the fact that we can't leave butter anywhere on the counter or leave the door to the cupboard where we store the garbage open or he thinks it is his personal buffet, he is extremely well behaved.
And then there are those EYES!
They look deep into your soul.
It feels so good to have a dog back in the house. We feel complete again.

Upcoming Events:

November 19th and 20th
Trinity Artisans in NW Portland

December 3rd and 4th
Art Over Macleay Park in NW Portland

December 12th and 13th
Salem Holiday Market
Oregon State Fairgrounds

More details on the above to come . . .

Now it is time to get back to work!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Rockin' the ROCKs!!!!

I have a thing for rocks.
Not shiny, sparkly rocks.
Not rocks that you wear on your fingers.
Just . . .rocks.
The plain, grey rocks you find near a river or by the ocean.
Rocks that fit in your hand.
Rocks that are smooth and rounded from years of rolling around in the water.
I love the way they look.
I love the weight of them.
I love the way they feel in your hand.
I love to stack them and lie them around on tables and fill jars with them.

As a young girl, I remember spending hours every day while I was on our beach vacations "rock hunting".
In fact I would spend so many hours, that I would see miles and miles of rocks when i closed my eyes to go to sleep.

On our recent trip to the beach I found myself walking at the water's edge looking for my idea of the perfect rock.
And I found some wonderful ones.
Flat surfaces, the perfect size and SMOOTH.

I later sat at my table, paint brushes in hand and I felt compelled to paint.
But rather than reaching for the canvases, I found the rocks in my hand.
Oh - just one, I thought.
A few timeless hours later . . .

Words on one side, painted images on the other.
These are the perfect size to attach to a painting . . .stay tuned for a preview of those.
Or to add a magnet and adorn the refrigerator.

There truly was something magical about painting these.
It reminded me of being a child and we would create murals with our beach treasures and paint the rocks we found.
I felt a strong connection to the earth while I held them and painted them.
I'm sure there will be many more of these in my future.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Apples and peaches

A Riddle . . .
What do you get when you cross a sink full of apples . . .

A counter full of peaches. . .

A family of busy bees in the kitchen . . .

A few sassy attitudes . . .

And a day of working together. . .

A hot stove and a few large pans???

You get a whole lot of winter satisfaction in the form of bright oranges globes floating in sweet, amber liquid.

And creamy sauce with just the right amount of sugar and spice.

And a great feeling of "look how we spent our weekend?"

Homemade applesauce and home canned peaches - it doesn't get much better than that!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Ready or Not, Here It Comes

As I am meandering back to my office after an enjoyable lunch break
I look over to my left.

What is that?
Why are those leaves red?
What kind of plant is that?
Wait . . .
The leaves should be green like the other ones around it.

And then it hits me . . .
it's September.
Fall is coming.

Ready or not . . .it's on its way.

It's time for shorter days, cooler nights, crisper mornings.
Bowls of warm soup with crusty bread.
Changing leaves.
Doesn't that sound wonderful?

OK - I tried.
I tried to make it sound wonderful and romantic and as if I am exicted for the change.
But Nope.
It's not working.
I'm sure I will get my brain wrapped around it soon enough - but the point is -
I'm not quite done with summer yet.

I still haven't eaten the perfect peach that drips down your arm when you bite into it.
I haven't gotten my fill of watermelon.
I haven't had enough naps out in my hammock listening to the windchime.
I still haven't gone to the river and jumped into the cold water - grateful for that initial burst of cold against my hot and sweaty skin.
I haven't sat in a park listening to the music at a free outdoor concert.
I haven't even had a chance to get tired of the hot temperatures or the stale air conditioned air.
I still haven't gotten a chance to drive to the mountain to visit a lake and float around on our inflatable raft.
I haven't smelled enough warm blackberries growing wild on the side of the road.
I haven't walked around the farmers market on a warm Saturday morning gathering a basketfull of fresh produce.
I haven't heard the ice cream truck drive through my neighborhood, with it's tinny speakers blasting out the sounds of childhood.
I haven't stepped into the shower, cursing myself as the water stings my sunburned shoulders because I forgot to reapply the sunscreen - but grateful at the same time because my day was spent playing outside.

So - for the time being, I am going to ignore the changing colors on the trees.
And I am going to do my best to hold on to summer just a bit longer.

How bout you?
Are you ready for the change of season?

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Only in Netarts!

If you are ever on the Oregon Coast and happen to travel through Netarts, Oregon -
you will pass by a little place that will make you turn your head.
You will slow down your car and wonder . . .
Should I stop?

And the answer is YES!

This is Lexi's Cool Stuff.
I mean - how can you not stop at a place that is full of Cool Stuff???

A tiny little cottage full of . . .everything.
Clothes, jewelry, paintings, dishes, chachkis of all kind.
Now, just in case you are still wondering what kind of place Lexi's is - I looked up the definition of chachki and it reads "a nicknack or 'all sorts of crap'".
Enough said.
And besides - saying it is a shop full of chachkis sounds so much better than saying there is all sorts of crap.
Wouldn't you agree?

But best of all - there is Lexi.
A woman who loves what she does.
She is living her dream.

From the second you walk in her shop, you realize that you are someplace special.
This is not your average thrift shop or antique shop.
Everything has a story -
and she will oblige you with where she found the item, how she got it back to her shop, and what the place or person from which she found it was like.

Lexi will show you around and get to know you.
She'll show you some of the cowboy boots and clothes.
She'll show you her office - a table outside in the front with a low-tech cash box that she trustingly leaves just sitting there.
She'll event show you the bathroom/dressing room with old recycled wallpaper and fringed light fixtures which a local lovingly deemed "the brothel".
There is even a handwritten sign in the bathroom that reads
"Please don't poop - there isn't a fan in here".
I mean really . . .are you going to find that kind of customer intimacy at Target?

And when you are done shopping - she will send you on her way with a fresh baked brownie.
When was the last time you shopped and were given a fresh baked brownie???
And if you don't want to eat it now - she wraps it up and sends it with you.

Only in Netarts.  Only at Lexis.

Her sign is made out of shells! See the table with the cashbox???

A large concrete hand - ready to sit in. And can you resist when the fingernails are painted bubble gum pink?

Rows and rows and rows of old creates filled with . . .(ahem) . . .chachkis!

And who doesn't need one of these??? And he MOVES! He waves at you!!!

Thanks Lexi! We thoroughly enjoyed our visit!

Monday, September 12, 2011

Oceanside Labor Day Sale

We had our annual Labor Day sale in Oceanside.
This was a bit different for us this year.
Mama Bear was tired.
Very tired.
I really didn't want to go to the sale this year -
Beach . . .Yes!
Sale . . .No!

Papa Bear made a compromise.
We do the sale in Oceanside as planned.
But in stead of me sitting all day for SAturday and Sunday managing things -
he would do it.

How could I turn down that offer?

So  - he drove down ahead of me and set up our space.
He managed the sale and talked to the customers.
He worked all day Saturday and Sunday.

Now don't get me wrong -
I worked too!
I had important things to do . . .
Books to read.. . .

Sculptures to design . . .
(OK - truth be told - I had nothing to do with the turtle sand sculpture. This was all my daughter and friend. -
And really - everyone makes castles.
A turtle is so much more original . . .)

There were sunsets to watch . . .

And more sunsets . . .

And I painted . . .a lot!
I mean - I worked HARD all weekend.

Do you believe me???