Showing posts with label Art. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Art. Show all posts

Tuesday, April 19, 2016


While reading Jean today, she reminded me of a conundrum that I experienced last weekend: the sewing machine electrical cord and foot pedal went missing.  And I mean nowhere were they to be found.  The last place I remember seeing the clear plastic sack containing those pieces was at the repair shop. 

That sack was lying last Friday morning on the repair office counter next to the cash register.  Inert, innocently bagged along with my name and phone number in case it was separated from the Pfaff.  It was just there.  I was trying so hard for it not to be misplaced.  But it was lost, or stolen, or taken by someone who had not a clue that it was important.

Two phone calls to the repair place assured me that the parts were not in their possession; intensive questioning of the husband revealed nothing (he carried the repaired machine back to its cabinet). A thorough car and then garage search revealed not a clue to the whereabouts of the missing parts.  Had I picked up that sack when paying for the repairs? I just cannot remember. So there was nothing else to do except order the missing parts from an internet source.  Sigh.  $120 could have been better spent.  Nothing to be done now but wait and see if the newly ordered parts show up via USPS.

Today is the first day that Julie will be at our house for a short visit since the first of the year.  Her visit will include lunch of fried trout that Gene and I caught last week at Corn Lake.  Julie was last here at the house on January 1 when almost immediately she became ill with that blasted virus that hit the manor, quarantining the place for about ten weeks until it had run its course of infecting all those vulnerable residents. From New Years' Day until today, Julie has either been recovering from illnesses and surgeries or otherwise incapacitated to the point she could not leave the manor/hospital for a visit home.  That is almost four months, so today will be a real treat. Pray it will be a "successful" visit: i.e., all bags stay in place on her body and she does not need to be returned to the manor for nursing care that I cannot provide. 

One of her nurses said yesterday that back in the early winter, Julie would begin throwing up on the mornings when she was to come over to our house because of anxiety that all would not go well.  That made me so sad to hear that.  I will endeavor to make light of any untoward outward expression of appliance glitches today, because it is likely Julie feeds on my nervousness.

Yesterday, I waited almost an hour at the manor for Julie and her entourage of care givers to finish up with her care before our visit.  (I brought tamales for our lunch.) While waiting, I finished this little piece in oils and pen, 5" x 7". 

Further dabbling yesterday with pansies and poppies in acrylics turned out nothing worth saving.  Tomorrow my friend at the manor who also paints with me on Wednesdays may provide something worth sharing.  I'll take a picture of the cardinal she is painting for show and tell.

The weather is truly spring-like, and by that I mean it takes its turn being cold and warm, with last night temps going down to freezing. Here is a photo of a few cosmos seedlings this morning.  They have spent the last three nights under a south window in my study.

About half of the seeds germinated, so it must be time to start planting and nurturing a second batch.

Last week a newly ordered kit with yarn dyed by KnitCircus showed up in the mailbox.  It is Rainbow Trail by Christina Gihrlanda.  Lovely colors! The color is named "Quoth the Raven." It will knit up into a striped sweater like this:

Friday, December 18, 2015

December Meeting of B&P

Twenty-One entries were displayed at the December meeting of the Brush & Palette organization. Methinks that we all were a bit embarrassed to show off some of our work, but then again, it behooves the B&P to have participation, whatever the enthusiasm level of the artists. All present voted on six of their favorite pictures from the group. The top five pieces receiving the most votes were awarded $10 each and three people had the same number of votes for sixth place and were awarded $5 each.

 Judging took place from 1:00 pm until about 1:30 pm as we milled around and ate pizza, salad, relishes and luscious desserts provided by the B&P Board members. President Elise Lind handed out copies of an article titled "How To Judge Art" both in anticipation of the judging and as an aid to a following critique of member art.

Member suggestions for paintings shown by brave souls were provided by the talented membership; several people showed their paintings.

Trudy Ungaro put forth her drawing in watercolor of Santa,with a tree in the background adorned with rhinestones for festive decoration.

Linda Dembitsky with a mixed media piece. She incorporated musical scores in her piece; great effect!

After eating pizza and refreshments, Elise tallied the votes and named the top point achievers. $10 award winners were Maggie Cook, Nancy McCarroll, Emmi Starks, Laegan McGee, and Elise Lind.
Ten Bucks in My Hot Hand

Three people tied for sixth place and were awarded $5 each. They were: Trudy Ungaro, Russell Mendelson, and Victoria Bianchi.

Come and join us in 2016 at the first B&P demonstration and meeting on January 21 at 1:00 PM at the Art Center. Cheri Isgreen will show us, teach us, inform us about poured watercolor techniques. Don't miss it!  More information here about B&P.

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Brush & Palette October Demonstration

With the 2015 Brush and Palette Fine Arts Show paintings creating a Hollywood backdrop (89 entries) on the Grand Junction Art Center walls, Ann Kurz Chambers took center stage with her demonstration on October 15, 2015.

A multi-faceted artist with a published book of wildflowers, cranberry products, and more, Chambers showed how to create landscapes with oils on pieces of wood previously gessoed with a white background. 

Her creations are unique, and she paints quickly, proficiently. She emphasized that all art supplies and items are conserved, no matter the age of oils in tubes. She returns to her paintings that have been long neglected, perhaps laying against a corner of her studio, and fine tunes them in multi media ways using gesso and layers of paper or found objects. 

Chambers often uses hardwood by-products supplied by her son. Most of the wood provided by her son is special Engelmann spruce wood that he uses in his violin making.

Recap of Chambers’ demonstration:


oil paints, turpentine, turpentine in spray bottle to retain moisture on surface, Liquin, panels of wood, fiberboard, canvas, canvas board, masonite, gesso, brushes, rags, protective gloves


  • Apply several layers of gesso to chosen surface object
  • Apply the layers several times, laying on more gesso in the opposite direction of the prior layer
  • Sand lightly after each gesso layer has dried
  • When background is to your liking, apply oils (saturated with Liquin for ease of application and to aid in drying)

Several Finished Chambers’ Objects:

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Brush & Palette 2015-2016 Begins Anew

Fall has arrived and it brings a new year to the Grand Junction Brush & Palette organization.

Last week, Sarah Dishong from Interiors, Etc. presented the September program, discussing current framing trends.  She asked that members bring in one finished, unframed piece of artwork so that she could make specific presentation and framing suggestions. Sarah discussed material trends, design and balance for matting and framing.

Sarah suggested the artwork sample above be framed with a lighter frame and either a fillet or white matt to offset the piece.

Trends for the coming  year include:
  • using lighter colored fillet or matts so that the painted work is not distracted by colors
  • using lighter colors around the artwork in a more neutral hue will not be off-putting to the buyer of the art
  • using barn wood for frames has not come back into vogue
  • metallic frames are still somewhat dated, not coming back soon
  • likewise, colored metallic frames are also somewhat dated
  • using lighter creams or whites for fillets/matts are suggested, especially for pieces that one wants to sell

Sarah Dishong, on the left, with Deborah Robinson, Show Coordinator for the Brush & Palette club.  (Picture taken at the Art Center, where monthly shows are held for the Brush & Palette organization.)

left to right: Emilie Olbert, Brooks Powell
Lise MacGregor, pastel artist, won the September Mini-Show

Next month, the Brush & Palette will meet on October 15, again at The Western Colorado Center for the Arts, aka "The Art Center."
The October presentation will be given by Ann Kurtz Chambers, mixed media artist.  Ann will demonstrate techniques of painting on miniature gessoed wood panels with oils.  She will also show how to prepare the wood panel, and show a fun, fast two-stage process that will create an abstract painting.  All are welcome, and we are always on the look out for new members and presenters!

Friday, June 5, 2015

Sharing Goodness

Indulge me in the sharing of the goodness I found and re-found today in searching the web.  Here are web sites, readily accessed in the future for perhaps Normal Pressure Hydrocephalus (NPH) or recipes or music or books (if I remember this particular post).
Julie is at Colorado Canyons Hospital, back from South Carolina last week, and is faring well.  Thank you for all your prayers and good wishes.  We hope for a Grand Junction placement soon.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Measure Twice

After watching a YouTube tutorial by Irmgard Rawn, I decided to paint a rose in watercolors in an impressionistic manner.  Or two or three, or maybe even a whole bunch.  They turned out pretty well, so I recycled a matt, glass and frame to use as a wall hanging.

But I cut the danged watercolor paper too short to correctly fit inside the matting.

So now I will cut up all the roses on the paper and use them for note cards.  And I will start over on another painting, this time ensuring the size will correctly fit into the matt before cutting the completed watercolor.

This was 140# paper, soaked for 15 minutes prior to stretching.  The predominant color is "Opera," which gives a punch to the usual pinks.  Although Irmgard produced a magnificent piece, and mine won't compare, that is really not what painting is about.  Let's put it another way: painting is all about what makes one happy.  The roses made me happy.  And I get to try again and make even more impressionistic roses, and perhaps they will actually get framed.  We shall see.

My friend PomPom whose blog can be accessed here, talked about slicing up lemons, layering them with sugar and refrigerating them until the juices seep out sweetness.  A friend of hers from the Ukraine taught her that trick; I did just that a few minutes ago and cannot wait until this afternoon to try some in iced tea.

Happy spring, all!  Time to go play pinochle and have coffee with friends.

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Lenten Season and New Starts

Joining in with Angela and the Henri Nouwen discussion groups, I have responded to this third Sunday in Lent, writing on this blog some thoughts about the Prodigal Son and how the elder son might have perceived being left at home.

Our church as been having soup lunches and dinners during the Lenten season, and we all pitch in and bring soup and bread after noon services on Wednesday.  Here is a recipe I have made several times, and it is a pretty darned tasty crock pot recipe:

On the painting front, I am in the throes of creating four panels, 10"x 30" each.  The term, according to Wikipedia is a "tetraptych."  It will be of a tree, in four colors.  Here is the first panel:

then again on the wall in the living room to see how the greens look against the peach colored paint on the walls...

Have a great week and make some delicious soup!

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Chihuly at the Denver Botanic Gardens

Saw the posted impressive glass art exhibit by Dale Chihuly last weekend in Denver.  For more information on him or the traveling exhibit,  go to the Denver Botanic Gardens.  Seeing these works was an exceptional treat.  We were able to view the glass art during daylight hours and also during dusk time when they were illuminated.

Here are a few of the pictures I took at the gardens, set to music:

Friends and I had great food and a marvelous time.   Dessert below was served at The Market on Larimer Square, delicious!  And we saw a live performance of "Pippin" at the Buell Theatre.  Retail therapy was included.  Also great fun!

I came home to paint and refurbish my study.  More on this tomorrow, or soon.

Friday, August 15, 2014

More Liturgical Wall Art

For the last summer days of August in the church liturgical calendar of Ordinary Times, butterflies, hot colors and sunflowers.

 (oils and acrylics, 36" x 24")

 (paint on silk, 24" x 24")

(paint on silk, 24" x 36")

Also on Pinterest here

Wednesday, May 28, 2014


Fish!  We caught fish!  The husband and I each caught our trout limit this morning in a bit over an hour in a lake twenty minutes from our house.  We kept the biggest of the eight, six total were brought home.  They will be fried up in a pan outdoors over a grill fire for dinner tonight.

This is a swordfish.  I am on the left and Kathy is on the right, with the fish in the middle, in case you wondered. That picture was taken years ago when we had a girls' weekend in Cabo San Lucas and reminds me of our great vacation.  And no, we did not catch that sailfish.  We just rode on others' fishing experiences.  

And lastly, more painting on the fence.  Think maybe we are through with this effort.  It is getting too hot to paint outside anymore; we are expecting 91 degrees F today.

Saturday, May 10, 2014

More Flowers on Fencing

Now we have both the east and the west back yard fences painted with flowers, just in case the seedlings do not prove viable and flowers won't grow according to plan.

Above is the east side yard fencing, under a much pruned lilac.  We have had that lilac many years, and it really needed branches culled, especially around its base.  Out came the clippers, then the saw, and finally the chain saw.  The lilac was denuded, making the fence bare.  A bit of decoration was in order, so this time I added a spider and a cobweb to some echinacea flower leaves and petals.  The bee was cautioned about the spider web across the way.


The Vogue Shawl was completely taken apart and the linen yarn rewound.  It just did not seem to be working, plus I found a huge mistake I had knitted into the pattern way back when. Thoroughly unsatisfactory, so it was dismantled in short order.

The organic linen was re-purposed into the start of another Shetland Lace Shawl, and the linen fiber is behaving much better with this pattern.  So far, I am about 10 percent through it, with mistakes at a minimum.  The first Shetland shawl turned out well, so fingers are crossed that this one will come up to muster.


Blue iris were added to the back, thanks to a friend's pruning hers back.

Columbines are blooming.  This week has been very cool and the night temperatures are still going down into the 40's, so I have not yet put out the seedlings.  But I purchased one dozen geraniums and planted them this week. Several years ago I was getting three dozen geraniums for patio pots, but am cutting down this year. Those yellow iris are doing their duty and continuing with profuse blooms.  The amaryllis have been put out, a new black-eyed susan root and day lily roots have been planted, and the husband planted a lettuce variety, cilantro, corn, tomatoes and cucumbers, along with zucchini.  The basil that was planted last week, along with a rosemary plant, are perking up, and the cilantro is 1/2 inch in height.  We added a garden bench to sit under a Japanese maple tree for ornamental purposes.  We planted this tree about eight trees ago and placed the ashes of our sweet black dog, Grace, under this tree, beneath a statue of St. Frances.

This area is now called a "bethel," thanks to learning a new word from Zana this week on Words With Friends.

Cooking & Domestic Duties

New recipes this week include a flour less chocolate cake, similar to this one. This is for Mother's Day brunch, so will get busy on it in  a few hours.  Except the recipe I am using (again, thanks to Natalie) calls for baking it in a 7" spring form pan in a crock pot sans water in the bottom. Also, Natalie insists that the cacao percentage be over 60%, as good old Hershey's just will not do for this decadent dessert.  A raspberry sauce goes atop.  It keeps in the fridge for two weeks, so the left overs will be good on ice cream.

We have clean windows as of yesterday, as our friendly young men who run "First Impressions" did a great job of getting the dust and dirt off the insides and outsides.  The cleaning of windows necessitated the taking down of the accordian pleated cellular blinds, two that were broken and needed replacement.  After 16 years in this house, one of those blinds has been repaired twice, but enough is enough.  This time Home Depot will be my default seller, and I'll get vertical wooden blinds instead of the cellular type.


Powering through Vera, almost through Season II.  Love this British detective series!  Ann Cleeves wrote this series, and since I have read all her books save the most recent one on my Kindle, it is no wonder this is a favorite.


We got a new car this week, a Honda Civic with all the goodies on new cars. It is silver in color and I love it.  My husband purchased a 2013 Honda Sport Fit and really likes his, so now two little Hondas share garage space.  I don't drive out of town very much, but the Civic handles the highway well and has plenty of zoom.

My next travel will be to Barcelona, Spain in October for a Scrabble transatlantic cruise directed by friends Barbara and Larry.  Remember when Barbara celebrated her 30th year of directing play a few months ago?

That's my update.  Tell me yours!

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Acrylic Impasto Technique

For the church sanctuary display beginning on Sunday, April 27, and continuing through the summer in Ordinary Times of the liturgical season, I decided to try the impasto technique of raising flowers with thickened acrylics.  Not having any thick acrylics on hand, YouTube came up with a way to make a stiffener for paints.  It can be seen here.  But I still prefer buying the Liquitex product.

A few close ups of the flowers using both a palette knife, brushes and thickened acrylics, along with twigs glued onto the canvas and painted over with acrylics:

Fimo clay shaped and baked at 225 degrees lilies


This is the completed 36" x 24" canvas: be paired with the poppy finished a few weeks ago:

24" x 36", acrylic

Does it make you feel like spring may be closer than we think?

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Pausing in Advent for Madonna and Child

Never having been much of a collector over the years, and with that being said, I do admit to having a few Christmas collections;  most years I search out at least one box of assemblages for seasonal display.  One collections is of angels, another is of Christmas ornaments, and the third is pictures and icons of the Madonna and Child.

At last count, I had 24 religious icons. Some are Romantic era pictures, and some are replicas from the Byzantine period.  Most have come from different countries, where I searched them out among coffee bars and trinket shops. It gives my heart a thrill to find one, purchase it, and carefully pack it up to carry home where it is then carefully nestled along with the other icons, awaiting their retrieval for living room display (in lieu of a tree) in the Advent Season.

Here are a few Madonna and Child icons/pictures in our cadre:

Do you have a collection of objects that you enjoy viewing and displaying?  If so, I would really like for you to comment.  And show me what you collect.

linked here:
The Madonna and Child has been a common topic of art throughout the centuries but they were most influential in the Middle Ages and the Renaissance time periods. Paintings of the Madonna and Child have been dated back to before the sixth century and have continued to appear throughout the ages even to the present day. Despite how old and how popular of a subject the Madonna and Child is, artists manage to show a great deal of variety and originality over the years.