Monday, January 15, 2018


Happy Martin Luther King, Jr. Day! With the library closed, there will be no blog today :)

....and now the library is closed for inclement weather (doh.)  I'm not giving up, but I am taking a snow day. 

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Swallows take flight!

partial view of "Swallows," mixed media installation, including: relief prints, decorative paper,
ink, acrylic, wire and thread, 2017
 Yay! The swallows are installed! (Whew!)  "Swallows" is part of the upcoming exhibition 10 Artists/ 10 Pieces, curated by Joan Baldwin and opening Friday, Jan. 12th 4 -5 pm at The Hotchkiss School.

As you may have guessed - it was a very (very!) busy week in Artlandia, and I'm looking forward to seeing the whole show Friday :) !

All packed up and ready to go!
reassembling on the carpet
view from the bottom floor looking up

view from the upper floor looking down
view on the upper floor looking through at (drumroll...) Audubon's swallows(!!)

Of course, now that the swallows are's time to get back to all the things that have kind of been on "pause" while the swallows were in process including the second side panel for the fox.
Detail of 12 x 30" collage
Detail of 12 x 30" collage

Detail of both 12 x 30" collages side by side

with the fox for scale

I enjoy these, but I felt like they really needed a little something to relate them back to the seven deadly sins project, all of which include faux-garbage, so I carved a new block of refuse to go in at the bottom.

"Oh my Human would like to give me extra
chin scratches and stare at my nose? Ok :)." 

And in creature news - there was a bit of a pup-mystery early in the week.  Honey's nose has been turning pinkish-brown for a couple of weeks. It didn't seeming to bother her, but I did some research, and apparently this is a thing in White German Shepherds as well as Golden Retrievers, called "snow-nose." Now that I know nothing is wrong, I think it's super cute. 

Junior and my Princess were in fine form this week.
I thought this was funny -
while Honey loves playing in the snow,
Jr. opened the clothes cupboard and
snuggled down on top of my (formerly clean)
sweaters - smart kitty!
Jr. "helping" with the new collage

My Princess giving Jr. a very dirty look, though I'm not sure whether this means: "You're not doing it right," or
"If anyone is going to sit on the collage, it will be me."? 
Jr. getting back into big sister's good graces (...notice how they are
both on the carving pillow, while the cat bed sits empty in the
background,and the human is left to sit ...on the floor.  Haha.)

And our nature shot of the week:

Tuesday, January 2, 2018

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year from Artlandia!  Things I wanted to do before the end of 2017: more birds.  

 One might think I have enough birds (never!), but there actually are a few poses that I wanted - for example, this side pose leaned back/away (and once I had it facing one way, I thought I might as well carve it going the other way.)

proof of the first state (I went back and did a little more carving
especially around the eye and wings.)
Thinking of carving mirror images, I finally (finally!) carved the front facing bird looking left (to go with the front facing looking right bird from August 2014 . )
bird from
August 2014
  I included a little size variation when carving the inverses (the second ones are both about 12% larger than the first ones). I wanted to be in keeping with the variety of sizes in nature and to make the inverses distinct from the first views.  I plan to use some of these to finish the second border for the fox ).

5 minutes
I spent the last day of 2017 figure drawing, then came home and started reorganizing the studio and sharpening and cleaning all my wood carving tools so they'd be all nice and ready for the start of the new year. :)

I also put new feathers in the cloche and photographed it - getting ready to pack up all the Swallows components for installation January 8th. (Eep!)

10 minutes

In creature news...
It continues to be very, very cold here and Honey continues
to revel in the snow - I marvel at how she's so elegant and content
 in this weather. 
My Princess on the other hand decided that the best place to nap
was on her human's heated shrug...while the human
was wearing it and carving blocks. 
It was time to put away the "ornaments" from the
kitty toy tree. Junior went
right into the box after them to retrieve them,
 "Oh, Human, you dropped these." 

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Cloche, Birds, and lots of Snow

Happy Holidays! This week, an exciting new addition to the swallows project - I finally made the cloche element that the swallows will be orbiting.  It's a house made with wire, thread, and 3D doodled plastic. (Those are feathers inside - I started with what I had on hand and will be adding some longer ones. Due to a big snow, there hasn't been a good time to go feather shopping, haha.)

A very exciting picture here - this is my sophisitcated
storage and organization system for the wired
swallows so that the wires stay straight and untangled and
 the birds stay separated into their groups for each mobile.

As we can see - it meets with Feline Assistant
approval - in fact, I think the feathers may meet
with a little too much feline approval
(and it is now being stored in the one kitty-free
spacein the house). 

On Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, I figured it was a holiday, so I'd do whatever I most wanted to do in the studio.  I carved two new birds - these are pretty small - I think about 4.5 inches tall. I carved the first one and then printed it on another block as a template to carve the mirror image.

 There was a big snow this week:

The member of our creature family who most enjoys snow is definitely Honey - she loves the new toy her grandma sent - it has fins so that it sits on top of the snow when we play snow-fetch. She also loves making pup snow angels - rolling on her back and scooting back and forth to make a blurred, Honey-sized imprint in the snow. I enjoy seeing how happy the snow makes my joyful pup, but I remain firmly in the kitty camp on this one -
Jr. watching the snow from the
heated blanket. 
my Princess in the exact
same spot, a few hours later

The kitties may not be huge fans of snow, but they like Christmas (or kitty-toy-tree season).

Guess who's Queen of the wrapping paper pile
Jr. "helping" with the ribbon
Other random marvels this week - I came across this turquoise poinsettia with rainbow glitter - oddly fascinating (I documented, but didn't bring it home due to its potential as a poison hazard to pets.) 

Last but not least, a beautiful, pre-snow landscape shot from earlier in the week. And on that note - wishing a safe and happy 2018 to all! :)

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

tiny trees

A very busy week in Artlandia! The latest digital print arrived in time to sign, package, and mail out for the holidays - thumbs up!
Latest digital print, 5 x 5" 
I also made a new block of trees based on resized and distorted versions of some of my other tree blocks - my thinking behind this is so that I have more options in terms of the depth of field in upcoming landscape pieces.  
What fortuitous timing - I got to study the trees in this Durer print up close and personal 
 I'm working on some other projects as well, but they're secret until after the holidays O:) . I've been a busy little elf.
In creature news - Jr. was a helper, doing a quality control check of every box before I packed it. Meanwhile, my Princess sat on the chest beside me and leaned her face out over the heating vent so that she looks like a model doing a photo shoot with a wind machine, haha.
They also took turns keeping the carving pillow warm while I worked on the tree block all week (and I felt the need to document this instance of peaceful sharing!) 

In pup news - Honey loves (Loves!) her new bed and seems (fingers crossed!) to have stopped chewing on/ tearing it.

My friend Tammy made me a 3D printed Pieta!  
Sunrise from my bedroom window - "tree research"