News and such

UPDATE ~ If you are looking for the Vintage Bella Blog Party post it is here.


News about my book “Inspired Remnants, Curious Dreams”  . . .  The final gallery selections are being made this week and it’s going fairly well.  There were 16 spaces available but I didn’t know there would be that many until just recently.  At first I was told there wasn’t going to be a gallery at all.  Then that there were only a few spaces.  So I really had to scramble to fill those slots.

The funny thing about epoxy clay is that so many artists are using it but hardly anyone mentions anything about it.  So after some extensive online sleuthing I was able to uncover the “secret” material that many very well known and incredibly talented artists are using!  Consequently I’m pretty sure (OK really sure) the gallery pieces are going to blow people away as well as the realization of exactly WHO is using this stuff!!!


About Seth’s True Colors series of posts . . . this was yet another truly inspired idea (how does he do it!) to discuss the legendary book project with reflections and insights from the fabulous artists that participated.   After he announced that he would be doing a True Colors series I happened to be playing around with an experiment that Charley started– a vial filled with shiny copper nails and sealed with (of course!) epoxy clay.

The epoxy clay is perfect for this since it will not leak.  It has held a tight seal very well ever since October so I’m going to make more of these.  Anyway back to the True Colors story.

I had some pretty green netted lace laying near the vial and thought that looked nice together so away I went.  It was wrapped in darker green silk along with the lighter netting.  As I was working I began to realize the True Colors book was very much on my mind.  It was shaping up fairly well but I set it aside because I wasn’t exactly happy with it and nothing as coming to me.

That was the day I visited Seth’s blog and saw I had missed SEVENTEEN posts in my RSS reader.  If that doesn’t speak to how busy I’ve been nothing does.  I usually pounce on his posts right away.  : )

Anyway, the most recent post was about Linn Jacobs who selected Yellow Green and Copper as her journal colors.  I didn’t know any of the True Colors artists personally and had no idea she had since died.

Anyway, as fate would have it I had been doing some spring cleaning in my closet.  I tried on a silk shirt that I hadn’t really worn and it was (of course!) a light spring yellow green.  It didn’t exactly fit right which explains why it was shoved way in the back.   I didn’t donate it with the majority of the other clothes (can you believe 3 huge black garbage bags were full of cast offs) because I always recycle silk clothing to use in my art and in workshops I teach.   I had tossed it on a pile of other silk clothes and as I walked back by that shirt the color grabbed me and I right then knew I’d be able to finish the piece.

As I worked on the finishing touches I felt led to add a small tribute to Linn.  I carefully embroidered “To Honor” on the Yellow Green silk to a woman I never knew but who after all these years of seeing her art time and time again as I’d pour over the well worn dog-eared pages has inspired me in ways I’m sure I don’t fully realize.

The image above it the closest to the true colors.  No pun intended it’s just that in most of the pics the color is washed out and doesn’t look like it does in person.

Consider these excerpts that Linn’s friends wrote about her on Seth’s blog

From Lynne Perrella     ” . . . Always with graceful strands of silky threads and fibers to hold them in place…..Very Linn.”

From  Marylinn Kelly  ” . . . Looking today at the pages she created for Sunset, I find in her circle/spiral motifs an expression of wholeness, completeness, overlaid by bright tendrils, rays of the sun that eventually reach every corner.”

This piece is called “to honor” and is still not completely finished.  When I hang it up it looks too squarish so I’ll be rounding out the corners by adding just a bit more rusty organza and singing it (I don’t mean like the glee club I mean with some fire ~ are those really spelled the same way?!?!?),  a little more green netted lace . . . and (of course!) some yellow green beads.  : )   And since it actually is suppossed to be worn I think it would be quite practical if I should affix some findings for a closure.


Workshops I’m Teaching (maybe)

I’m trying for the third year in a row to teach a workshop or two at Artfest, my absko-lootly favorite art retreat.   This year I was able to go after missing many years in a row.  I forgot how much I really do love it there.

Artfest is a very happy place so I don’t want you to be scared of this pic I took on the way back to my room (all alone in the dark!).   I do have lots of pics from the retreat and *some* day soon I will share them.  really.


Here is another blog hop that will be this Friday, May 21.  I *LOVE* these!!!   Just go to her site and leave a comment that you’ll be participating.  The last one I did was sharing pieces made from Susan Lenart Kazmer’s ICE Resin.  If you haven’t seen all the pieces made from this go here.

I think it would be just grand to do some blog hop parties on Mixed Media Art.  Wooo hoooooo!  So I’ll put that in with the list of BIG PLANS for that site.

Bye for now!

Buried Treasure!

I am so in awe of Mr. Seth Apter at the Altered Page.  He has the most amazingly creative ideas and here is yet another!!!

Today many many bloggers are choosing one of their best posts to have available today.   To find them just go to Seth’s blog here.  You can look through the list of participating artists and basically see the best of the best.

I am also happy to be participating.  One of my very favorite posts is called “A LOve Story” and you can see it right here.  I like it because it is like an online art gallery contained within a post and there is a surprising twist at the end which ties in to the name of the post.

Other news from the Happy Files is the Mixed Media Art online party site that I just launched in May now has over 400 amazingly talented mixed media artists all in one place.  And Seth is one of them too.  Hooray!!!  So that is like a very large version of the A Love Story online gallery with 2,000 images of wondrous eye candy for you to behold!!!

a love story

I just realized we can pick more than one post so I’m going to do another! This one is called “The Vest” and I like it because it’s about my sister (who I lost a few years ago) and because it is one of my favorite stories about her because it’s just so “Diana”.  : )

The vest

Here’s one more!  I like this one because there’s a story that goes along with art piece.

Dragon tooth findings

Who is Seth Apter?

Do I sound like an Ayn Rand wannabe?!?!? Well maybe so! But if you don’t know the answer to that question you are missing something I say!

Why don’t you start with a great interview done on Alicia Caudle’s Altered Bits Love Page?!?!?! I have been following Seth’s work for several months now and learned so many things about him that I never knew before. I’ve been bumped from the Love Page after reigning there for two months (wooo hooo that’s a lotta love) and I can’t think of a cooler artist to be featured next.

Isn’t it so much fun discovering a new artist or learning more about your favorites?!?!?! Like one of the very best kind of gifts they are! And sometimes these gifts will keep on giving with inspiration such as the case with the piece shown below which I directly attribute to Seth being so inspiring. And it continues to be inspiring because it is right outside my house and it is changing with the weather. So awesome to watch this happen!!!

Have a grand and fun day!


Designing For Decay

Bound For Decay detail

Bound For Decay detail

I sooo love the Disintegration Project hosted by Seth Apter at The Altered Page that even though I’m waaaay behind with so many things after being sick for over six weeks I was compelled to make something for this.  I could NOT stop thinking about it so it just had to be done.

Bound For Decay detail

Bound For Decay detail

This is a rather different art project as the collaborator is Mother Nature herself. Sometimes I get a bit grumbly about living in a rain forest environment even though I do adore winter storms pummeling the coast and curling up on a gray winter day with some hot tea (or a complex red wine!!!), the pups and Charley to watch a movie or read a good book.   It’s just that it can get ever so old when there is relentless rain for months on end.

But today I’m so happy for the rain because I’m putting materials in that will react quite quickly with the wet environment. I cast a goddess of unfired porcelain clay which I merely baked in my craft oven rather than firing in a kiln. I want to see if she will hold together or not.   Her face wasn’t working out so well so I made that out of a new paper clay from Japan.  I’ve been experimenting with it this week and I really love it!!!  I’ll be using for the first time in this workshop at Art & Soul in Hampton, Virginia.

Bound For Decay main

Bound For Decay main

This project differs from others I’ve done because I strive to make things to have structural integrity and to last.   Perhaps you can tell by the looks of this that the fleeting lifetime of all things was very much on my mind.  She didn’t even start out in one piece!  It is very freeing to let go knowing that weakness in construction may turn into beauty when left to the elements unprotected.

Uncoated steel wire was used to bind the paper layers together. Rust is inevitable and I think will add so much character to the final piece . . . assuming of course that there is anything recognizable left of it.  Most of the paper used was sewing pattern tissue paper– it is quite thin of course so who knows if the layer of paint over this paper will keep it together.  I fashioned the wire into a cross shape and bound the goddess with thread that is quite taut to hold at least most of her parts in place.  Do you think the one arm that isn’t anchored down with the thread will still be there on May 1 when the project wraps up?

Bound For Decay in the environment

It seems to look as though it is bonding with the tree already.  Is it just me or does it look like it belongs there?

I think this was an absolutely brilliant idea so hats off to Seth for such an inspirational venture.  I’m very grateful to have listened to my inner child and let her loose to play with this.  Thanks, Seth, for continuing to be a great inspiration!!!


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