I've been frustrated previously at trying to take good pictures of the birds at my window feeder
because I am not a savvy photographer and had trouble focusing through the glass window
at the feeder just a three feet away from where I sit. But this morning as I sat down at my computer, I saw a dozen finches, five on the feeder and the rest in the branches of the lavender
tree. I grabbed my camera and in desperation tried some different settings. By standing
further back and using the 6x zoom to the max and then partially pushing the button to let it
focus and then just waiting for the birds to land, I was able to complete pushing the button as
soon as I saw them. It worked! Within ten minutes I had the finches, chickadees, blue jays
Cardinals, and two other species that I'm unaware of the names for. It's an hour or so later as I write this and the snowfall is heavy. I can only imagine that they already knew this was coming and were filling up for the duration.
The still photo above is one of my favorite birds beside the chickadees. The white tummy and
solid gray above reminds me of a small child wearing a hoodie!
The current trend for "bib" style jewellery and my own interest in jewellery and fiber art (just a little segue) from my painting resulted in this new design. Hand crafted organza petals and leaves sprinkled with tiny crystal beads and vintage pearls and chain. There's even a snippet of a love letter trapped within the layers of leaves. I've completed several versions of this style
including a silvery gray and rhinestone version for winter.
Nice article in the Fall Montreal Home magazine about Jacques and Debbie Demers whose home I had the privilege of creating for. There is an image of one (the faux drapes in their bedroom) of the many pieces created for them on Page 90 with a mention of my name. Thank you Debbie! The second photo is of a cheetah sitting bathside with a potted fern in the Master Bathroom. (not shown in this article).
From little labels measuring 2" x 4.5" to a painting measuring 3 x 5 feet. Finished this week, a request for fields, fence, pink flowers and horses. These photos were just before the finishing touches.
From my previous post I thought I'd show you what the finished labels will look like. I'll be excited to see how the labels look on the bottles when the oils are shipped later this year. I have one more illustration to do of Oregano. The four flavors illustrated here are lemon, peperoncino, basil and mint. If you're interested in purchasing any of these oils, just click on the link for Tavola Mia for more info on where to find them.
Back in June I posted a collection of paintings I had done using my favorite flower to paint. Well, one more time, this painting is finished and ready to be delivered. I always wonder why I never do one for myself and never seem to be able to do so after I let one go. This one is done in acrylics and measures 24" square.
I occasionally do some graphic designs (which I enjoy) and this is one of the projects I've been working on lately. In my side bar you'll see a link to "Tavola Mia". A wonderful cooking school run by Maria Loggia here in Hudson, she has imported these olive oils under her label (designed several years ago). There will be four new designs for four new flavors of olive oil laterthis Fall and I've been working on the watercolor illustrations this past week. She will also have a cookbook out later this month. I've seen the book in stages over the past year and have just seen the "hot off the press" hardcover final. It's fabulous! Maria's attention to detail in every aspect of the book is obvious. The recipes were wonderfully photographed and the book is full of beautiful imagery. I'll be posting the launch of the book here in my blog as soon as it's available.
"Winter is an etching, spring a watercolor, summer and oil painting and autumn a mosaic of them all." — Stanley Horowitz ... I love the Fall, a sentiment I think the majority of artists feel. Probably set in motion by the beginning of the school year and the end of Summer, there's a sense getting back into a groove and feeling the urge to create with even more purpose. I haven't written in my blog for more than a month! It's not as if I haven't anything to write about...in fact I've been quite busy with painting and jewellery designs but distractedly so because I am leaving tomorrow to drive one of my three to Boston where he's about to start at Boston University. I'm trying not to get too emotional. It is a happy event after all. But thoughts like; this is the last week, the last dinner, the last movie out as a family, the last favorite dessert etc. etc. keep popping up in my head. I am trying to replace it with opportunities to scout out the Boston area for new artistic ventures which I'm sure I'll take advantage of once I'm there. Plus I have many promising projects to return to. It does sound like I'm trying to convince myself, doesn't it?
Tomorrow is my last day at Galerie Mouche on Cameron. I had taken this on temporarily while Melissa (of Mouche Mosaics) was on maternity leave. I enjoyed having this space as everything that I create is never usually "displayed" by me in one place but rather over every area of my work area in various stages of completion. Also nice to meet people who are out and about visiting Hudson. Something I don't get to do while working at my home studio. Great news though, is that Ann Brisson who has the furniture and objet's d'art part of Mouche will carry some of my jewelry and paintings to be displayed with her country furniture. So I am thrilled about that...
Stay tuned for postings about where I will be exhibiting next. At the moment, I can say for sure that I will be showing at Whitlock Golf Club for the Christmas exhibition in mid November and always, 24 hours a day right here on my blog and website.... : > )
Today's post is in reference to Seth's invitation to "Dig for Buried Treasure". I've picked two to bring back today. The first treasure is actually of two videos. Not of my own work but a collection of beautiful images set to music....and in re-visiting this one of my favorites, I discovered there is another one on YouTube of one of my favorite artists and the women in his paintings (Adolph Bougeureau). Many of you will have seen the first video before, but if you're like me, the beauty of the images and the accompanying music never fail to please. For my post from June 8, 2007, click here and Bougeureau's Women in Art
....and finally my second buried treasure (at least in my own eyes) This painting was commissioned and I was so happy with how it turned out. This one was done in oils. I tend to lean more toward acrylics because of the playful, experimental nature of it, but I must make more time for oils....and when I can tear myself away from digging for more treasures from other bloggers, I may just do that! Thanks for looking : > )
Seth Apter from "The Altered Page" has provided us with more inspiration yet again! Tomorrow he will post a list of participating artistic bloggers who will have posted their favorite blogs from the past. This is a second go around and as I missed participating last week I will take part this time. I have to say what I found from digging for nuggets of inspiration is a willingness to share techniques and tutorials and such personal thoughts on what drives the artistic soul that I feel I have a lot to live up to if I'm going to continue to have a blog. For now I'm posting this image I found while googling interesting faces. A composite of images making up the face of Adam from da Vinci's Creation of Man.
Chickadees figure into my artwork noticeably and yesterday I completed two 16" canvases that included an image of them in a collage. As I posted the previous entry, I was distracted (enthralled) with the activity at the bird feeder merely a metre away from me on the other side of the window where I sit at my computer. I had placed the feeder (the first one I've ever had) in that location over a month ago and it took them that long to notice but now that they do, they literally line up in the Lilac tree to try to bump each other off. It's killing me that I can't photograph well. Sometimes there are cardinals and chipmunks all in the same place at the same time...
The title of the collage shown here is "Wing Flutter Problems" an excerpt of the study from the Aeronautical Journal published in the 1930's addressing those concerns is also collaged into the image.
Yesterday morning, in a burst of inspiration, I made..........sterling silver bubble wands! Worn as a pendant reminiscent of a "Lavalier" "A lavalier is a type of jewelry, consisting of a pendant with one stone, suspended from a necklace. It is named for the type of pendant popularized by the Duchesse de la Vallière, a mistress of King Louis XIV of France. Within the fashion world, the name was eventually shortened to "lavalier(e)". An accepted gift of a lavalier, called lavaliering, indicates a romantic commitment that may develop into a long term engagement, and marriage. It really works! The bubbles I mean.........
A new jewelry design that I've been working on this week requires lots of chain. This is for a 21" long bracelet that doubles as a necklace. Looks great wrapped three times around the wrist and equally as well as a necklace that has a detachable focal piece. The fourth image is of a choker style necklace with tassles of silver and pearls... ...and this one is sold : > )
I've literally had to dash out into the garden on these super cold and rainy days to pick the tulips and lilacs before they're gone. But once the flowers are inside, I get busy photographing them and forget what's happening outside. After the paintings of flowers from Easter and Mother's Day (see the Bonne Maman and Rose paintings from earlier posts) I am now able to use what grows in my garden. I have lilac trees but the one I planted three years ago was my favorite. A Burgundy color with large florets that begged to be painted. I was so disappointed when they failed to bloom for two consecutive years and so last Fall I dug it up and moved it. That did it....this Spring I had eight clusters. So I have my photos to last me until next year (minus the glorious scent). I think I'm done with painting tulips for the moment in favor of the aforementioned lilacs and Irises that I have yet to photograph. I do enjoy the silhouette of Irises.....they're so distinctive....and as I'm looking out the window, I'm thinking that I should arrange them with some white bleeding hearts. Pictured here are tulip paintings new and old......
The pink watercolor tulips are almost finished. A format that I enjoy, taking photos from above on an assembly of objects patterns and textures. The framed red tulips were just delivered and is in the same room as the painting of red tulips on the doors of their armoire. The white tulips were painted with acrylic in a favorite vase, and the final pic is of a still life in my temporary studio in the village. A studio I've had since February and will have until the end of July.
I've always been attracted to needlework even though I constantly struggle with a needle and thread. This is a project that looks complicated but isn't really. I'm just at the point of finishing the edges which I haven't quite figured out yet. The clasp portion will be separate and connected with a beaded strand. And then I have to decide to fringe or not... This is something that would be great to wear with a simple white blouse and jeans. It's sitting on an oil painting that's not quite finished yet.
Back in January I thought it would be fun to do a few knitting and crocheting projects. I became hooked (excuse the pun) A few crochet flowers, followed by some "scarflettes", smaller, tidier versions of scarves to be embellished with the crochet flowers, followed by fingerless gloves (I made six pairs). And then felting! I had to try felting. I've always loved fabric and fibre and felting is so much fun. I had to tear myself away to get back to my jewelry work and yet again to my paintings. Wish I didn't have to sleep....
I'm half way through my Spring and Summer Studio location at Galerie Mouche on Cameron. A little hard to get into the groove working in a different location away from home but a change is good. I've been more productive which is what I'd hoped for. I started with watercolors because they were easier to transport and set up, even though I'm doing a lot of mixed media work at the moment. A new flower shop has opened across the street and I purchased some beautiful roses the week before Mother's Day and immediately set up painting them. I love the "Bonne Maman" jams and jellies and often use the empty jars as a vase because I like the calligraphy. Tricky though trying to translate that in a painting which I'm about to do with the Rose one. Here is another version using daisies.... And now the garden has produced flowers which I try to capture as they come and go.....Tulips, my favorite and soon the lilacs.
The only thing I can say in my defense is that I have been busy setting up shop, working on new paintings and indulging in more fibre work in the way of mini art quilts, photo imagery on fabric and felting...big time with the felting! When making a segue such as this, I have to decide whether it is something I want to stay with for awhile or walk away from and I really want to explore felting more.
Pictures will happen this week as I prep them for uploading.
Also, I have updated my link to George, our local art and stationary supply shop. A jewel of a store and Deborah, always a source of inspiration!
A little late, but I'm still enjoying the slower pace of the post Christmas week. Enjoying music, books and food (ok, chocolate is food), and taking the time to play, make lists of what I'd like to accomplish this year, and try out new things. This image was taken in Florence last May and I did a little digital painting of it. I love the juicy brush strokes. Why can't I bring myself to paint like this in my virtual world? I guess this is something to strive for this year......