Little family things to share . . .

Sometimes you just have to share with friends – that’s youhere’s a post that my son Rick wrote about his grandmother, my mom, who would have been 100 on August 26th. Dang, I miss her! If she were here, she’s be wishing me a happy back-to-school day tomorrow. If your mom is still around, give her a hug!




Shards and Spirit Box Kit

Congrats to Barb Wolfe, winner of the SHARDS subscriber drawing for the Spirit Box kit. Barb’s a good jewelry designer, can’t wait to see how she puts it all together. Speaking of shards, yesterday’s workshop artisans outdid themselves in quality and production. Take a look at some of their work – it’s very fragile right now while it’s waiting to be fired, but the pieces should be even more amazing once fired and finished. The last photo is a card of air-dry clay buttons that I made yesterday for fiber art enhancement – I’ll post directions at a later date. Sherrill Kahn turned me on to air-dry clay as a quick alternative to earthenware.Thanks for a great workshop, y’all – see you Wednesday to finish your pieces and put them together at Ann Pearce’s jewelry shop.

No-Fire Shard Faces – a how-to freebie

So you can’t come to the workshop this afternoon? Darn! Well, never fear – here’s a how-to freebie on making your own shard faces and adornments at your own place of creative belonging. No kiln needed because this project uses air-dry clay, lightweight and inexpensive. I’m going to demo this process at the workshop this afternoon although we will be using actual earthenware clay today. But this is a fun option to try at home (yes, you can try this at home). Here are some how-to step-by-step photos. And if you click this link, you’ll get a printable one-page list of materials and directions. Happy molding! That sounds weird. Happy creating beautiful one-of-a-kind clay objects of delight!!


Friday Freebie: Spirit Box Kit

To celebrate the publication of my article, Spirit Boxes, in the Sept-Nov issue of Cloth Paper Scissors magazine, I’m putting together a one-of-a-kind Spirit Box kit for a Shards subscriber. Subscribe before midnight on Sunday and you’ll be in the random drawing. So, YAY! The kit has a shard face, the matboard frame, some decorative paper, and tin to hang the project. Oh, yeah, and directions.

Also, for your weekend viewing pleasure,, I just finished the video of Sherrill Kahn’s workshops at the Studio – what a great time we had! Sherrill and I are fast friends now – that’s the best part of all! Thanks to everyone who came – oh, and don’t forget, there’s a shard face workshop this Sunday with spaces left! Send me an email if you want to make your own Spirit Box faces.

Art teachers and adornments

I don’t know where Sherrill Kahn gets her energy – after two full days of teaching workshops at the Studio, she lectured to a full house of North East ISD art teachers this morning at the McNay Museum of Art as part of their in-service for back-to-school. My painting pal, Gloria Hill, is the NEISD Visual Arts Director and she arranged for Sherrill to come from California for the occasion. Sherrill shared images of her intricate, colorful work and she gave lots of hints to teachers on how to inspire students even on a teacher’s budget. Did you know, for example, that cheap hair gel from the Dollar Store works beautifully as an extender for acrylic paint? Check our her newest book for lots more cool ideas.

Afterwards, Gloria, Sherrill and I went to my Studio to work on face shard jewelry, but not before several of the art teachers showed up just to visit with Sherrill on a one-on-one basis. We did get back to work on our shard faces, and we spent the rest of the afternoon with Ann Pearce creating our necklaces with her help. If you’d like to make your own clay faces, I have a workshop this Sunday, August 25, on clay adornments, so sign up and join the fun! There’s still space.

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Sherrill Kahn Workshops, Halftime Report

Sunday’s workshop was fantastic – we worked really hard and learned so much that my friend Vicki said her creative brain was full to overflowing. I will be posting a list of resources and photos and other fun things to share later in the week, but let me just say that I wish everyone could have the pleasure of taking a workshop with Sherrill.

Here are a few pics – more to come.

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Shared Spaces report

What a waste of me being terrified and nervous – the show was fantastic! Thanks to everyone who came out and looked and bought and talked and hugged – and Chef Michael did his usual fine job with the food and drink. Some highlights of the evening:

  • Sherrill Kahn arrived safety from Los Angeles and was able to meet (and charm) everyone, including many who are looking forward to her workshops on Sunday and Monday.
  • Checking out all of the red dots on Gloria’s paintings (and some on mine, too)
  • Seeing friends whom I hadn’t seen in ages
  • Watching Michael making extra wine runs to the HEB across the street – we had more than 150 enthusiastic guests at the opening! Yay!

Here’s a short video of the proceedings. And at the bottom of the post are links to some new workshops at the Studio. Hope to see you soon! Happy dance, happy dance . . .

September Workshops at the Studio
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Gulp – it’s Art Show Eve

I hit the ground running when I got home Monday night – my fellow artist and co-showee, Gloria, was smart enough to get everything done in advance for our Friday (tomorrow!!) exhibit, but – oh no – not meeeeee. I shared onewas still painting this morning at the Studio. Gulp, for sure. This afternoon, though, we started hanging paintings, and by golly, it’s gonna work! Here’s a sneak preview (see pics) – we need more tags and a list of works, but it’s almost ready.  sharedtwoI know I’ve said this, but it’s amazing how two people working at the same time with the same stuff can end up with such different results. I think you’ll like them 🙂

The exhibit, Shared Spaces, will be up through Labor Day, but if you come to the opening, you can get to tell us what you think! And you might even take home a piece of interesting,original art. The food on the menu looks good, too – so come, relax,  and escape the heat of the Dog Days of summer.

By the way . . . .do you know why the Dog Days are called that? The term dates back to the ancient Romans and is celestial in origin.The brightest star in Canis Major (and in the night sky), is Sirius which is also called the “dog star.” During late July, Sirius rises and sets in conjunction with the sun, and the ancients believed that the heat of Sirius added to the heat of the sun, creating a stretch of hot and sultry weather. My cat, Max, copes by just chilling out – he thinks we should call them the Cat Days of summer. Come chill out at the Studio tomorrow evening from 6-9!

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The grim tedium of air travel

I’m sitting here with my diet coke and stuffed carry-on luggage anticipating a two hour wait at Reagan National airport and thinking how nobody looks happy. Bored, maybe, or impatient, or long-suffering or apathetic, but not happy. The shoe thing, the screening thing, the pervasive anxiety have a way of dampening the joy of travel. Even the security screeners look frustrated and unhappy. Sigh. Doncha wish for the old days? Like everybody else who remembers when flying was fun? I think the federal government (which “works” in this beautiful city) should fund a boarding gate art area with visual art work, sculpture and short videos by artists to infuse a little joy in this joint. Just sayin’ – ok, off to buy a bag of chex mix since none of the airlines gives out free munches. Sigh.

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Blogging from the Watergate

Hi from DC – I’m visiting my dear friend Victoria (who has a wonderful place at the Watergate on the Potomac) and taking a few days off to fill my artistic well with new inspiration. This city is amazing – so many things to see and do – and eat. One of my favorite places to visit is the Textile Museum – FASA friends, if you want some inspiration, too, check out the pages of the artisans who do work for the gift shop there. Personal favorites are Chris Triola’s Cloud Shawls, which are textile paintings as well as wearable art. Another inspiration – the delightful and super-accomplished Jean Effron, whom I met at dinner last night. She’s the founder of Jean Efron Art Consultants LLC, a Washington, DC, based art advisory firm that provides comprehensive fine art services. Jean finds artists whose work compliments the needs of her corporate clients. I really enjoyed taking with her about what she does, and the some times tough job of finding the right match for both the artist and the client.

Finally, here are some San Antonio connections at the Watergate – ahem. One of my paintings hangs in Victoria’s living room, looking pretty spiffy, if I do say so myself.


And on another wall hangs a wonderfully mysterious figurative painting by Laura Mijangos – if you haven’t seen her work before, there’s an opening tonight at AnArte Gallery featuring her paintings – I’d be there if I weren’t here!

But I will definitely be in San Antonio next Friday for the Shared Spaces opening – hope you can be there too!