First, the Studio — then the Alamodome!

stIf the Saturday Show and Tell gets any bigger, I’m gonna need to rent out the Alamodome! More than 40 people came to the Studio on Saturday to share creative ideas, show recent projects, and brainstorm solutions to works in progress. Many thanks!

One of the favorite “shows” was David Chidgey and his amazingly informative presentation regarding his work in mosaics. He brought examples of his work in glass and tile and described his course of mosaic study in Chicago.

David’s website, Art Glass Mosaics, is an excellent resource for information about his work and the art of mosaics in general.  I was quick to ask him if he would consider doing a mosaic workshop for us at the Studio – and he said yes! We are working on a possible November date, so stay tuned.

Another fascinating share was from Lynn Maverick Denzer – she brought an oil painting she is restoring that was done by her grandmother, artist and conservationist  Lucy Maverick.


Lynn teaches at Inspire Community Fine Arts Center, another great art education resource.

Other presruenters showed fiber art, including this mixed-media piece by Rosemary Uchniat (left). Questions and answers were flying around the table – lots of creative buzz going on. That’s why I love these Saturday Show and Tell get-togethers – there’s a wealth of talent in our community, and such generous people willing to share.

So I’m either going to buy more folding chairs or rent the Alamodome, because this informal Show and Tell event is a keeper! Hey, maybe next month we can expand out into the parking lot! Surely the first cool front will be here by then. Right?

Have a great week, everyone. And come to the next show and tell – date to be announced soon!

Small worlds, big talent

I had a blast at summer Art Camp – I taught an online class at Artful Gathering called Small Worlds: Creating Fantastic Landscapes with Altered Pages. The session just ended today and the student work (many are practicing artists) was phenomenal. Some of you have taken this workshop with me at the Studio, and you will especially appreciate these collages. Wowzers!

The majority of these altered papers were created with Citra-Solv cleaner, which I’ve mentioned often. If the idea intrigues you, you can get a good introduction to the process at this link on the Citra-Solv artists’ page. Heck, after seeing all of this good work, I need to schedule another workshop! I’m inspired – and I’m grateful to these fantastic workshop participants who allowed me to share their work.

I can’t show you photos from the art-filled week, but I did do my homework. . .

It’s a foggy morning here in Boston, and I am still processing all of the incredible art I’ve seen this past week, here, and in New York. You are temporarily off the hook for having to see my zillions of photos of art, though, because of some “saving errors” on my little Mac. But I will definitely post them when I get home later this week.

The most spectacular art museum I saw was the Whitney Museum of American Art – I hope you get to visit sometime. Their new location is breathtaking, and the exhibit, America is Hard to See, is like walking in person through the most exciting decades of American art. What an experience!!

The IMG_7381best new-to-me artist I discovered was Arlene Shechet. Here’s a photo from a video of her working on one of her large clay sculptures. If you visit her site, you can see the work I saw at Boston’s Institute of Contemporary Art. I was especially fond of the indigo and white mandalas that she did between 2002-2005. She is amazingly versatile, eclectic and visionary.

I did do my homework for Jane Davies‘ class while I’ve been here in Boston – Jane is an amazing teacher and painter – hope she doesn’t mind my sharing this approach to composing a painting study. It’s very worthwhile – it involves concentrating on two separate areas at a time within a randomly executed beginning. Take a look – I didn’t produce a “finished” painting, but I learned a lot and had fun doing it. And I did it on the dining room table with limited supplies – shows that you can do your art anywhere.

Home soon!! Can’t wait to be back to the Studio.

Monday morning roundup

fabricGoddesses were out in force at the Goddess Banner workshop yesterday. It was a gorgeous afternoon for drying colorful, glittery fabric on the rack outside the Studio. Among the participants were Monika Astara (my favorite fashion designer) and Lisa Stamper Meyer from Roadhouse Arts, as well as several talented FASA members who specialize in surface design. So, even though we used the some of the same images, the results were totally diverse and eclectically spectacular. Take a look at the video, and then I’ll tell you about some of the techniques.

Aren’t those wonderful? We did a combination of Small Space Dyeing that Rosemary Uchniat teaches in her workshop and digital image transfer that’s done with hand sanitizer (yep!). I learned about this technique from an artist in Rehoboth, Delaware, and it works great on fabric. Basically, you print your image on an inkjet overhead transparency, spread a layer of hand sanitizer gel on your fabric, place the image face down, pat gently and leave for 15 minutes. You’ll get different results based on how much gel is on the fabric, but it works great. We protected the digital transfer by taping freezer paper on the back.

And speaking of Rosemary Uchniat, guess who won the Friday Freebie Mermaid Shard? Yep, Rosemary – congrats – it was totally random. Now she’ll have to make a mermaid!

Have a great Monday, y’all – I’m headed to NYC and Boston for a few days to see the family. Will send art reports along the way!


Mermaids, fiber arts and Friday freebie

1First things first – the Friday Freebie – I was amazed at the response to the Mermaid Shard Faces that I posted on Etsy this past week. They flew (or swam?) out of the shop and are now sold out, but I’ll be making more of them as a regular item in my EarthShards gallery.

Did I forget to save you one for the Friday Freebie? No! Here’s your chance to get a Mermaid Shard Face of your own to tie to a branch and add mermaid-like elements (See mermaidkaren copymy friend Karen’s wonderful example, left). These faces come from press molds I make from old cemeteries and sculpture gardens, so they have good mojo. Be a SHARDS subscriber by Sunday at midnight and you’ll be in the drawing.

Now, onto the fascinating subject of fiber arts – if you work in paper or mixed media or fabric or felt or anything string-like or woven – listen up! The Call for Entries from the Fiber Artists of San Antonio for their Juried 41st Exhibition at the swanky Plaza Club in November opens next week. If you’re accepted, your work will be seen by zillions of Plaza Club members and guests who appreciate – and purchase – art. So here are your instructions:

  1. Read the info poster (below) to see three great reasons to enter this show with any of your fiber-related work
  2. Then, if you need inspiration, watch the video at the end of this SHARDS post. You’ll see six fiber artists demonstrating easy, eclectic techniques from the FASA Artists Buffet meeting last Monday.
  3. Enter the FASA juried show – the deadline’s not till October, but time flashes by like a mermaid’s tail!16exhibitflyer

And here’s your Inspiration Video! Good luck with the FASA entries AND the Friday Freebie!

Monika Astara – a visit to her studio

When I first met Monika Astara at a FASA Runway Show several years ago, I was almost tongue-tied by the beauty and originality of her designer clothing. She was swamped with customers, but I managed to ask her rather tentatively if she ever did trunk shows – she said that she did! Six months later, she brought her wearable art to my Studio, and it was a huge success. We became fast friends and she’s had several more fantastic shows with me – her clothes are comfortable, casually elegant, yet very distinctive. If you are a Monika fan, you know what I mean.

Hoverer, I had never been to HER studio until this weekend, and what a treat it was to see where all of the Monika Magic originates. I got to see her long cutting table where she paints and constructs her garments, the stacks of patterns, and most of all, the fabrics! Her signature fabrics are chosen for their unusual textures and colors and for their practicality – not an easy task.

I took some photos during my visit to share with you, and I hope you will be at her next show and sale at Lyn Belisle Studio in October, date coming soon!

Circles of connection

Saturday’s Show & Tell was the best kind of connected circle – it seemed as if everyone had a story or an idea that made the collective group smile and even applaud. When you begin with Vicki Siptak’s beautiful necklaces made from socks (1) and end with thoughts from a poet about imagery, words, and art, what’s not to love? Join us for the next one if you can on Saturday, August 29th (2-4 pm), and connect with this creative circle at my Studio. Here’s a video from Saturday.

kimAnother connected circle is getting really huge, as in International – that’s the Spirit Doll connection. It started for me with Joanna Powell Colbert in 2012 and her order for faces from my Etsy site. She and I both started teaching Spirit Doll classes, and the word spread. I’ve sent shard faces to many countries and  just got these photos from Jo Rockendorfer, who recently taught a Spirit Doll class in Sydney, Australia – here’s here description: “The red doll is Hummingbird Medicine, the green/blue was for a friend after she did a healing ritual and the last and most recent is Sophia Goddess of Wisdom”

I love the fact that Texas clay enhances Jo’s beautiful work from Australia – and if you’re reading this, you’re connected, too, in our circle – lucky me! Circles unify, art connects –  life is good. Have a great week.