Creative Women’s Market

On my home page you will find my show schedule and I have included the dates where I will be setting up at the Wunderkammer Arts Center. I was at the first one in April and even though it was a rainy/flurry night there were quite a few patrons that came through. This market celebrate creative women and there were artists, jewelry makers, seamstress, bakers, gardeners and soapmakers on my end. There are two rooms. Along with this there was a running photographer exihibit on the walls. I had access to the door going out to the courtyard and it was really interesting. Once the warm weather shows up it will be quite pretty because there are many areas that have garden growth. Mountains were painted on the brick building that is the south side.

The fence that is the east side and next to the road has items attached to it for privacy I am sure. The pathway is painted also.

I was not sure what all to bring since I normally set up in a tent. So I brought my three easels and three large canvases, prints, painted rocks, notecards and small canvases that can sit up on their own. It was fun and I met new people. My next one I will be at is in June.

This building used to be an italian restaurant that was very popular. All the flooring had been taken up and there was just a cement floor. I was trying to think if I had ever eaten in the room I was showing in. This picture shows the east wall that has been painted very colorfully. It was a fun night, only three hours and a different venue than where I normally am at. I look forward to returning in June.

Seaglass

I have a fascination with sea glass. I just think the colors are beautiful. It is just broken bottles and such that the water has tumbled and smoothed and then it washes up on shore to be discovered and made into really interesting things. Take this picture for example. I follow Anne Marie Gorham who is the owner of lakesuperior_beachglass. She lives in Duluth, MN. Here she has taken the sea glass and made a delightful elephant.

Here she made a blue bicycle with flowers in the basket. I really had a hard time choosing. If you would like to go look for yourself, her shop.

My own little treasures of beachglass and such. I found them on a Lake Erie beach. They are in an antique butter pat my grandmother gave to me. Another person I follow, but I don’t have anything from them is IrishPatti. She lives in Rochester New York and gathers beachglass from lake Ontario. She makes some really pretty items also. She has a great instagram and facebook page.

Lastly this is my necklace that I bought from Karen Boddy, and she lives in Cleveland and makes Lake Erie seaglass jewelry and also seaglass from the Virgin Islands. She just did a great blog post about sea glass and this is her website. Do you have any seaglass?

Books, Binging and Movies

For those of you who know me or have followed me, you know my love affair with books. I download some on my devices but I really do miss the feel of them. Here is a recent one that was purchased. Much of my Amazon points are used for books, and enjoy going in, buying it, getting them in two days (prime) and not paying a dime, Such a simple luxury for me. My goal list has decluttering on it, and I get a lot of inspiration from books. This should tell me to just “let it go”, which is hard to do sometimes.

This book was pulled out from a pile in my closet. Doesn’t this just have the cutest cover? I never finished it the first time, life just took over I bet. It has very thoughtful stories in it.

A pile of books by my bed. The top three are new. “The Red Tent” has become a favorite. It was read a few years ago but I wanted to revisit it again. “Still Me” and “Colonel Roosevelt” are the third books in a trilogy.

Favorites from workshops I have taken and biographys of Chip and Joanna and The Busch Sisters. My sister in law sent those to me….I love, love biographys! “The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks” needs to be picked up and finished. I must have gotten bogged down with something in it, and I like the book but it must have been a slow part.

This movie I was searching for on Amazon Prime and Netflix but it was not open for watching yet, so I just purchased the DVD. Very enjoyable, I have watched it twice so far. It’s a keeper. While searching I came across a documentary called Packed in a Trunk-The Lost Art of Edith Lake Wilkerson. It was very good also and I had to watch it twice to catch everything and answer questions. Movies we have watched as a family was The Expendables 1 and 2 but still have the third one to go. A group of mercenary’s headed by Sylvester Stallone are hired by people to do rescues in of course, unconventional ways. Lots of explosions and death but I think the amusing parts are when Chuck Norris, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Bruce Willis show up out of the blue. One of the ruffians looks at Sylvester Stallone and says “who is going to show up next….Rambo”? I didn’t think I would ever say this, but I look forward to watching number three.

So this little character started my life of Binge watching. My Oldest, Sam gave to me at Christmas, this figure. I was very perplexed, I had no idea who it was. So I had him explain it and when he said Superhero I was hooked. I love Superhero’s! The Netflix account is his so I had not looked into it because I had an Amazon Prime account. Well this has opened up a whole new world. I had watched all they offered of Green Arrow, then Flash, then The Crown, which was fabulous! When I finished each show, I was kind of depressed for an hour, after realizing I have to wait till the current season is over to watch them in succession. I am now watching Flint Town which is pretty good too, but I can stop after one show, it doesn’t take over my life, like the others.

 

This pile here, is the last of my thrift store books from vacation last year.

This book has short stories, poems and beautiful artwork by G. Webb and Ron Evans.

Much to my delight, I have an autographed copy by G. Webb. What a find!

One example of the watercolor paintings. He has a gallery in Gatlinburg, TN.

This book I picked up in Northeast Harbor, on Mount Desert Island in Maine. She lived in Philadelphia and was a bit eccentric. Wouldn’t let me just look, I asked about an old botanical, she showed this, had an 8.00 price tag. Said she was surprised about that and it should be more. She was overwhelmed because she then had many more customers come in. So I picked this up and it’s pretty cool.

A former owner had an address embosser and he was H. Conrad Meyer, from Chestnut Hill in Philadelphia. I did a little investigating and found that he used to be the Vice President of Foote Mineral Co. which was closed in 1991 and is now a Superfund Site to be cleaned up. That’s all I could find though, but very interesting.

The plates as they are called, are very neat and it was first published in 1934.

This one was picked up in the Vermont thrift store. I liked it since our destination was Maine.

This also came from Vermont but I had visited Oregon earlier in the year. I hope to go back some day, there is so much to see that I missed.

Bunny Pillow, crocus, johnny jump ups, paintings

I fell in love with this bunny pillow while shopping at my local Kroger grocery. At Christmas there was a snowman pillow that I had looked at so many times and put back down. When all of them were bought I was irritated with myself for not buying it. The conservative brain kept saying “you are spending for Christmas, not for yourself”….you understand, but I have decided to relieve myself of that mindset. the minute I saw this sweet bunny face I snatched it up, put it in the cart with no second thoughts. I look forward to summer. Who would have thunk to pick up your pillows at the grocery???

This corner was naked too long, so I brought out the teal and blue painting. I have had so many customers think, and ponder about this painting but not purchase it. I am going to leave it there for a while, it really brightens that spot up and also picks up colors from the antique grandmothers flower garden quilt. The painting is still for sale. It is 24 X 24 and is $250.00. Just send a message if you have a question or are interested.

So desperately wanting some warm weather. We have a forecast tonight of some rain mixing with some $)*%!!! The plants are not giving up though. A few years ago I took 2 or 3 packages of johnny jump up seeds and threw them out in the landscaping. They multiply and become like a bed of moss. I even get some blooms in the winter. I suspect when it gets just remotely warm those little faces will be popping up everywhere.

Oh my, the crocuses are pretty. When there is some sun they open their petals and soak it up. In the evening they close up shop again. I need to make a point to plant more for next year.

Such a happy yellow!

The new day-lily leaves are popping up through the old, brown, shriveled ones of last year.

This suncatcher, that is in the studio window would reflect on a blank canvas that was on an easel. One early morning I finally paid attention to it,the yard light was giving it the reflection component so it was quite early in the morning.

I decided to trace it and do a painting because it was so neat. Here it is in the early stages. Thinking about adding some bronze paint and flowers twisting around the rays.

This is my very favorite gold in the whole world. Golden brand, Iridescent Bright gold fine. Check back for updates. Happy Easter and warm weather wishes to you.

 

Unconditional Love

Last year I painted this mixed media picture of a cat with all different designs and colors, because cats come that way. This cat is lying in the grass and batting at a feather. There is a monarch butterfly and a bird, all the things that cats like to chase. It is titled “Cat Love” and the inspiration was about all the cats I have had in my life. My first cat I remember…Tutor…when I was very young….to the six cats we have now. Yes….six. My sister Linda bought the original but so many look at the print and sing the words, or other cat lovers just go awwww, because they understand and feel it.

Pavel….came to our porch one cold March day. Hungry with an infected bite on his back. He is named after a Detroit Red Wings hockey player,

Here are the other five, (from bottom left) Pookey, Sophie, Lily, Mama and Miggy. Each one has a story. They were all interested in this new toy and see that sock? Lily is always dragging them out and doing her special sock meow. We find them all over the house.

When I was at the Louisville show, October 2017, a customer asked when I was going to do a picture for dog lovers. So this is the dog I used for the painting to complement the “Cat Love”. Her name is Mackie and she is in our cousins family. She is a Labradoodle and I love this picture with her nose so close to the camera. I bet she was interested in some snacky snack.

I also used her on a postcard to benefit Artlink here in Fort Wayne. Artists donate a handmade postcard that patrons can buy for their fundraiser.

Very early stages of the painting. It is on a 10 X 10 stretched canvas. I am using pieces of textured wallpaper and attaching them with gel medium.

The elements that I want to include have been added to be painted. Texture has been added through stenciling and paints. The nose and eyes have been painted in.

The completed painting, “Unconditional Love”. No matter who you are, your dog loves you. This dog has adoring eyes, a squirrel to chase, a leash to go for a walk with, a spiffy red, white and black ball to play catch with. Along with all this she is thinking about dog treats. Dogs are your companion, they need to be treated kindly and we need to take care of the animals. This is why I decided to donate $5.00 to the Fort Wayne Animal Care and Control for every print that I sell of this painting. I am only making 2000, so they are a special limited edition group. Fort Wayne Animal Care and Control have many good programs in place to take care of the strays and animals relinquished to them. Just recently they treated a dog with a bullet wound, many animals get adopted through retail rescue, they have a community cat program that spay and neuter cats and then put them back in the area they were found and make sure they have shelters and food. This way the cat population gets under control. These are just a few programs and I am sure there are many more. I do know that they will always need food and veterinary care. So if you would like to help, a print can be ordered in my Etsy shop. If you would like to see the other programs that are going on at FWACC click here. I know they take volunteers too.

 

Three Early Works

These three works might have been made about 12 years ago. I fell in love with watercolor and mixed media in this class. It was actually a watercolor class but the professor was a mixed media artist and he gave us more to chew on. I believe it was his last watercolor class before he retired from his teaching career, Maurice Papier @MauricePapier. The assignment was to make a trilogy, so my basis was from the song “Turn, Turn, Turn” which is also taken from a passage from the Book of Ecclesiastes. The timing was 2006-2007, and that was soon after 911 and so there are references to that. The black and white building was the gatehouse of the Evergreen Cemetery in Gettysburg, PA. We visited Gettysburg on vacation three different times so had many pictures from the area. Each of the three paintings has a clock. I transferred the copy of the building using wintergreen oil, a technique that Maurice taught. The paintings were done on illustrator board and notice the words. I can go back and find other early art pieces that I added words on, so that has always been with me.

A transfer of the twin towers burning. Black and white makes it more stark. Time to Love in a pretty script, with Time to hate making it look like a ransom note.

The transfer building in this one is a funeral home in Fort Wayne, look at the picture and it shows the corner that I used. I wanted to find some architecture that was similar to the Evergreen Cemetery. Making the burka on the mourning woman was satisfying to get the folds of the fabric to look good. The ballerina is decent except for her face, I was never happy with it. Still all in all these are some of my favorite pieces in my portfolio. There is a lot of meaning in the little word groups.

Two Problems Solved

About 2:00 in the afternoon, when the sun is shining, my studio is so bright. So much so that I can’t tell the colors or see things correctly. I didn’t want to put up a blind either. Then one day I solved the two riddles. I picked up these two towels in Lawrence Kansas, at the Raven bookstore in Sept. of 2015. They have cats doing various activities on them, and there were two different towels so I had to buy them both.

They are too thin to dry dishes with and I didn’t want to use them for any activity that would give them stains, etc. It wasn’t an overall design, just six cats on each towel. What creative thing to do with them?

I just kept moving them around because I didn’t want to put them away, because I would just forget about them. They make me happy because the cats are so cute. Then on a really sunny day I thought “I really need something in front of the window for just a few hours”!

So I purchased a spring tension rod, I had little rings and hooks from IKEA and hooked them on to the towels. Shear little curtains that I pull back when not in use, and cute cats to look at when they are. I have to keep them higher so the real studio cats can look out the window. They are the true owners of the space.

They have to have their space. I see the one tea towel is uneven. Oh Well…we all aren’t perfect. If you want to read about the bookstore, click here.

Organize and Maintain

The words of the year…..Organize and Maintain. It may take me all of 2018 before I accomplish my goal. I am working on organizing my photos on the computer. I have 12,000 and I started moving them around and it was not going smoothly then I (AH HA) remembered my photoshop elements program that has a photo organizer on it. I got them all copied into it (that’s how I knew I had 12,000). Now researching how to tag, categorized, save to an external drive also, so I don’t lose them. It has been a real joy looking at pictures that I forgot about, like this one. I painted this for a religion class-Religions East and West-for extra credit. I believe the word was beauty and this may be a Chinese Robin on a Dogwood. This painting must be in my portfolio folder.

I took a black and white photography class where we used the darkroom and developed our own film. The assignment was to take a photo that was not good and color it using different mediums. My husband with his sports and teams that he likes. I think I used marker, pen acrylic ink.

One year I bought these vibrant geraniums to sit in front of the garage. I love this red.

Red tulips from our garden.

This was for a 2D class. We were to do a color wheel in an unusual way. I took fabric I had and made a small quilt. I need to find this also, I don’t think I quilted it! With the color wheel then I put neutral borders. It was fun….now where is that quilt! Oh and other items on my list to organize….email messages, I started out with 32,000 emails. I am making new folders and the sweep button really works well. I have basement storage space I want to utilize better, a pantry that needs organized and my side of the closet needs a lot of attention.

New Art-Joyfully Flying

This is Lauryn, and today I delivered her original canvas painting that she ordered. She loves hummingbirds and then after some brainstorming we decided on a sunflower and a poppy.

We also determined that she like quotes to my happiness! I found a perfect one that works so well with this painting. The author of the quote….Amethyst Wyldfyre (I love this spelling!) Was talking about a hummingbird. The piece of the quote that I used is: I fly joyfully through my days, seeing beauty everywhere.

The canvas size was 6X6 so I was able to put the quote on two of the sides. I enjoy sides decorated too, so it worked out really well.

I had the sunflower drape around the one side and I used my favorite Iridescent Bright Gold by Golden to outline, gave it some zing!

The poppy was draping over a corner which made it interesting. I feel that I got the most out of this 6 X 6 canvas.

This print is listed in my etsy shop now and I have it in two sizes. 11 X 11 to fit a 12 X 12 frame… or…. 7 1/2 X 7 1/2 to fit a 12 X 12 frame with an 8 X 8 matte. It’s a happy painting and I sure enjoyed doing it for her!

 

The Art Fair

2018 starts my third full year of art fairs. Toward the end of the previous year the art fair applications start opening up. My first I applied for was on September 29th. Going back through my pictures, I think about how I have evolved and how I keep learning with each and every show I do. This picture is from my first show in Roanoke Indiana in October of 2015. I had an inexpensive tent with a blue top, no weights, because I had no idea that I would need then. Thank goodness it was a beautiful day with no wind. We had purchased peg board and hinges to put together something to hang work on. It was so heavy! I brought along a table and had folding chairs and little lights and a rug. We had a pick up truck that I put all of this in and had my art covered in towels. See the pink price tags….I thought they would be easy to see. Amazingly I did make some sales and it was fun and something that I decided to do, but the one thing I decided was I was too old to be climbing in and out of the back of a pick up, something would have to change. This picture is good to remind me at how far I have come and also it makes me laugh at the timing of getting the butt shot of my neighbor.

The second attemp at an art show in Elkart, March 2016. I researched tents and decided on the Flourish Trimline with mesh walls. I made that cute banner, which I have hanging at my dining room window. The paintings are hung up very hodge podgy, they need to be in a gallery style. Very neat and very even. I painted my table in chalk paint and it turned out cute but it was a pain to move all the time. I also invested in directors chairs because they are so much more comfortable to have for very long days. They save your knees from getting up and down.

Here I am with my sister. We were so happy to have the tent up. When I got it, I read the directions and my husband and I put it up in the garage. We labeled the poles and I thought I was good to go. Got there the day before to set up and my brain could not remember how to set this tent up. We had to be out of the venue by 7:00 and it was not close. I slept horribly and then looked at youtube videos on how to set it up again. My sister said that she woke up to me staring at her saying ok….this is what we have to do. We got there, worked through it and put the last painting on the wall 15 minutes before the door opened. Advice…..set your tent up at least three times before you use it for a real show. It will save you sleep!

This is my art van that I ordered. It is a Ford Transit Connect. I love it and it is just the right size. I didn’t want anything larger, it has just two seats and the rest is cargo. It is low, so I don’t have to climb up and down.

After that show, we had a decent weather day in April so I practiced putting up the tent again. It helped, but it would just take practice and each show would get better.

My next show in May of 2016, Wyoming Ohio. Beautiful little town outside of Cincinnati. My helper bee is Margaret who lives just 15 minutes away. This was the first time that I used the full tent, sides, roof, back door so of course, it went better but was not smooth. If you notice my orange ratchets to attach the 40 pound weights on each corner. I was going for inexpensive and did not even think about the color. I used those for two years but this Christmas I received really nice black ones. Just learning where to position the weights, I put them inside now because it is easier for me to zip the tent up. Remembering to lift the tent before the bottom staybars get attached. Notice that the paintings are much more even and neat. I was learning! Just by going and looking at what others do is a great education.

Needing more hints and tips I found this book and it is great. Ideas that I used are putting together a tool box with rope, tools and first aid kit, zip ties, working with customers and her first shows, I could go on but it was a wealth of information. I highly recommend it. She published this in Feb. of 2007 and there is new technology etc. but as she points out this is just a guide, hands on is the best training.

Here we are at March of 2017, the same show that I had problems putting up the tent the first time. I probably have 10 or more shows under my belt by this time. I no longer use the rug and have added lights and a new table that is easier to transport because it folds. I keep trying different ways to display price tags and am currently using small strong magnets. My booth has improved greatly.

The last show of the 2017 season, St. James art fair in Louisville. It’s a three day event. Huge amount of people. Went down on thursday and and stayed over sunday night because I don’t want to take the chance of being to tired while driving. It is a large event for the area. Every artist has a different experience at each show. It depends on what their genre is, if they have been doing it awhile, what kind of following they have. This show is put on to benefit the neighborhood. I had been put on the waitlist and was called off of it to my delight. I really wanted to try this show and see what it was all about. Load in was not bad even though they were narrow streets. Were able to park near my spot and it was marked adequately. We had two hours to set up before we had to move the vehicle, which was enough time. What I did not like was that there was no room between the booths, we were right on top of each other. I feel that they just want to get as many artists in to collect the booth fees. All in all there were 750 artists and at times the lines going by your tent were so thick that customers had a hard time looking and stopping and jumping into your booth.

On Sunday the nonstop hurricane rain came through. This was my first experience for this kind of weather since doing fairs. I had downpours but not an all day rain. It was miserable, but we got through it and needless to say my day was a loss. It was raining so hard that the drains were backing up because some hadn’t moved their equipment. The rain of course, was no ones fault. I feel that there were too many artists, and it was not beneficial for us. I did get contacted recently that my street score (whoever did that) was high enough that I could get in without being juried. I don’t know if they don’t feel that they have had enough artists apply or what this is about. I decided to go in a different direction and find a smaller show during that time. But there were many firsts and I was glad to have the opportunity to experience it.

Three shows that I have applied to, for 2018 have juried and they have contacted the artists. In 2017 I was put on the waitlist for Broad Ripple in Indianapolis and then a short period later I was contacted that there was a spot. I really enjoyed doing this show. I felt that the customers were very much art enthusiasts, even when there was a thunderstorm customers were out there. Unfortunately I did not get in, not even the waitlist this year to my chagrin. Every year is different with a different jury. I will try again next year.

At a past show this summer I had a customer as if I had ever tried the Old Town Art Fair in Chicago. I had said that going to Chicago makes me nervous. He said that people are serious about their art in that area and it is a good show. I researched it and applied, I found many good reviews. I did not get selected for it. They give the scores of the three judges and it is a range from one to ten. I had a 1-4-8, so someone liked my work. I will give it a try again next year, because I feel it is worth pursuing.

Talbot Street Art Fair is in Indianapolis in June. I have always heard good feedback on it and wanted to try it. I had applied for the past two years and was not accepted, this year I made the waitlist and I am thrilled. It is in June so I feel there is a good chance that I will be able to get in. It will be on my schedule if I do on my home page. All in all, I have applied to 18 shows. I am trying some new ones and going back to others that I really liked. Music, alcohol and art shows I stay clear away from. It is too much work not to be the focus of attention. I did one and that was enough. I also decided not to go too far south in the summer time, way too hot! My sister almost passed out in Kentucky in May. So I am excited to see what the year brings. Trying to make as much art as possible to get my inventory up. Thanks for reading, I will keep you updated.