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About Me

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Guymon, Oklahoma, United States
I am blessed to live where my grandfather homesteaded, to have three beautiful daughters who are my best friends, to have six delightful grandchildren who live nearby, to be married to my sweetheart of 35 years and to thrill to the special magic of creating my own works of art. I'll never cease to thrill to witnessing new ideas and images come to life from the point of a pencil or splash of a brush. I am blessed.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

MY 2013 INK DRAWING - "MY FAMILY GARDEN"

Happy dance.  Happy dance.  I just finished this year's ink drawing.  Again I've created this piece entirely from zillions of tiny dots and dashes using an 005 Micron Ink Pen so I estimate this drawing has taken me over 60 hours.
My Family Garden
9" x 14" Stippled Ink Drawing on 90 lb Drawing Paper

I do an ink drawing each November/December while my advanced students work on an ink unit.  This year's drawing has been a challenge because my studio has been extra busy with my dictionary drawing series.  I was determined to finish what is now my 10th, detailed ink drawing designed for use as personalized bookplates.

The subjects of this year's drawing is a rectangular basket lined with both burlap and lace.  Because of it's popularity, I wanted to challenge myself to draw these two textures.  The most time consuming aspect of this whole drawing was the burlap - I doubt I ever draw it again.  The lace on the other hand (which was a scrap I found in my mother's sewing), was one of the most fun images to recreate.  Both subjects required me to basically "draw the holes."

I wanted to celebrate my grandchildren in my piece so I created five, vintage looking seed packages featuring the birth flower of each child.  The top packet is for Cami who was born in January (Carnation) followed by Tate born in February (Primrose) and Lily born in August (Poppy) and their little sister Quinn who was also born last February 14th (Violet).  The final packet is for Berkley who celebrates her first birthday this month (December - Holly).

In nearly microscopic writing, I've hidden my whole family's names around the piece - mostly on the seed packages.  I've added work gloves, a trowel and three little seedlings in flower pots.

This piece officially wraps up my artwork for 2013.  It's been a fabulous year for me and the popularity and sale of my artwork has grown far beyond my expectations.  I am thrilled that people from around the globe are interested in what I create.  Thank you, everyone who follows me, admires my work, sends encouragement or makes a purchase.  Art has always been a vital part of my life and to have others appreciate and share my joy is a rich blessing.

Merry Christmas from The Shoe!

Saturday, December 14, 2013

FRENCH CAFE' & FRENCH TEA'

 Cafe'
6" x 9" Mixed Media Drawing on Distressed, French/English Dictionary

Tea'
6" x 9" Mixed Media Drawing on Distressed, French/English Dictionary

Last year I got the bright idea to create some drawings on different dictionaries using other languages.  Since I work at a high school, I asked our amazing French teacher if I could borrow her French/English dictionary to photocopy a few pages.  I work on actual book pages but for this experiment I thought it best to borrow and not rip apart someone else's book.

One afternoon I was prepping pages with ink and watercolor and happily cutting through old, damaged books when I suddenly realized I was cutting through the French/English BORROWED book.  I was frantic.  I soon discovered that this wasn't just any dictionary - it was the book she had used since college nearly 40 years ago.  Well, I was able to locate a replacement book, apologize and apologize and apologize and repair my friendship.  As part of my penance, I promised to create her something special whenever she asked.

She came to me about a month ago and asked that I create her a Tea' and Cafe' page as a Christmas gift for her daughter.  These are those drawings.  When I gave them to her she was thrilled and she was especially pleased that her treasured book was going to be preserved on her daughter's wall.  She once again told me that my replacement dictionary was far superior to her original and that our friendship was more than in tact.  I had a lovely bouquet of Christmas flowers delivered to my classroom later that day as an additional thank you.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

TEACHER QUOTE COMMISSION

Teacher Quote
11" x 8.5" Mixed Media Drawing on Distressed, Grade book Page

I just finished the last touches on Christmas commissions and this is one of my favorites.  A dear friend asked me to create a personal gift for her granddaughter who is graduating this month with her teaching degree.  This friend has been so generous to my family and it was a treat to create something for her.

I am a big fan of teachers.  My whole family including my two sisters, my husband and all three of my daughter (one is still in school but that's her goal) and my in-laws all are or have been teachers.  I love being a teacher.  I am a better artist because I am on my toes as an art teacher everyday.

My friend suggested a few teacher quotes that she thought I might illustrate.  I actually found this one on Pinterest and loved it.  I built it using a variety of different fonts and then digitized it to an old page from a teacher's grade book.  Much like dictionary pages, grade books are going the way of the dodo bird - we all use online grade books these days.  I haven't used an actual, paper grade book in three years.

I added some typical teacher supplies around the edge and there ya go - Voila'!

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

TELEPHONE COMMISSION

Telephone
6" x 9" Mixed Media Drawing on Distressed, Dictionary Page

An area telephone company commissioned me to draw this piece as a gift for "the boss."  I drew a little telephone very early on in this series.  At that time everything I drew was brightly colored and cropped into a square format.  Now I enjoy keeping the whole page preserved and I use much more neutral color schemes.

I have been busy completing a number of Christmas commissions and only have two more to finish before I am officially "off the clock."  What that means is - I am about to shut down my sweat shop but enjoy playing in my studio.

Monday, December 09, 2013

RIO GRANDE ART FESTIVAL A HUGE SUCCESS

My Holiday Booth

The Rio Grande Art Festival in Albuquerque, New Mexico was a huge success for me.  I enjoyed great sales, met wonderful new artists and enjoyed a great time in this terrific city.  My booth had a nice location and thanks to the fabulous organization of the show sponsors, we enjoyed good crowds and eager buyers.  The success of this show has prompted me to take the leap and submit applications to a number of art shows across the country starting in the Spring.

Doing a big show like this is no small undertaking.  It took hours of preparation and planning plus a lot of quality inventory.  I never can predict what will sell at a show and each day brings different buyers with different interests.  I was pleased to sell both old and new drawings as well as lots of prints.

The show is held at the State Fairgrounds and Expo in Albuquerque and it was huge.  There were over 200 artists and crafters with all sorts of merchandise.  The event organizers had a variety of door prizes, strolling musicians and on-going hospitality for the participating artists.  I would go again in a heart beat to do this show next year.

Thanksgiving Dinner in The Pope Room at Bucca de Beppo

In order to open the day after Thanksgiving, we had to arrive and set up our displays by Thanksgiving.  Albuquerque is about 5 hours from our home in Oklahoma so we missed spending the holiday with our family.  It was a different experience to be in a hotel for the holiday.  The show arranged for a Thanksgiving dinner that evening at a local, Italian restaurant for all interested artists.  We had a ball eating family style with what began as strangers and ended as great, new friends.  We were seated in the "Pope Room" which was filled with all sorts of Vatican statues, artwork and photographs.  The meal was terrific and the evening was so much fun. 
My Husband & One of our Booth Visitors

I am very grateful to have been a part of this wonderful event and hope I get to participate again.  Thank you, Albuquerque for making us feel so welcome and special!

Saturday, November 23, 2013

ORANGE HUMMINGBIRD

Hummingbird
6" x 9" Mixed Media Drawing on Distressed, Dictionary Page

It all started with a hummingbird so the last piece I am adding to my inventory for the Rio Grande Arts Festival in Albuquerque next week is a hummingbird.  These beautiful birds exist in all colors and sizes so they are an artist's dream to create.  I especially love the blue green birds but I decided to venture out and create one with more earth tones.

I am off to hand letter about a dozen new pieces, put them in mats and frames and start packing my booth.  I am really looking forward to spending next weekend in New Mexico.  It will be my first experience celebrating Thanksgiving away from home and family but my husband and I are excited about our adventure.  I sure hope we find lots of happy homes for my artwork and as always, I hope we make some new friends while we are there.

Friday, November 22, 2013

ANOTHER LITTLE BEE

Bee
6" x 9" Mixed Media Drawing on Distressed, Dictionary Page

I am finishing up the last of my drawings I plan to frame for my holiday show in Albuquerque.  I have done a few bee drawings on dictionary pages and they are always a joy to create.  I've really had fun drawing this little insect so I wanted to take one along with me to New Mexico next week.

As is usually the case, these guys don't really have characteristics specific to actual bees but are a hodge-podge of bees made from spare parts.  My favorite part of this particular drawing is the chubby little guy in the upper right hand corner.  I think he is adorable.  He was a last minute addition after I remembered reading somewhere that this kind of bee defies nature and shouldn't be able to fly because of his build.  What a little trooper!  People say he can't fly and he does it anyway - there!  Waytago, Mister.

2013 BOOKPLATE PROGRESS


It is a treat to take a break from time to time to work on my stippled, ink drawing. This is my therapy. 

Thursday, November 21, 2013

TYPEWRITER

Typewriter
6" x 9" Mixed Media Drawing on Distressed, Dictionary Page

I did a drawing of an old typewriter (the actual typewriter lives in my husband's office) very early in my series of dictionary drawings.  When I first started I was cropping my drawings into square formats but quickly started to draw on the entire, vertical page.  I cringed every time I cut up an old book page.   My first typewriter drawing was in that square format and I've wanted to go back and recreate it on a full page for a long time - finally I did it.

This has got to be one of the most fragile papers I've drawn on.  It's from the same children's dictionary I love most but this page was extremely temperamental.  It wouldn't permit me to use many marks before it fell apart and blending anything was out of the question.  It's going in a frame right away to protect it from further damage.  I treat each page so it will last past it's usually life span so this drawing will be around for a number of years in spite of it's age.  It sure didn't want to tolerate much pressure from my pencils or very many strokes of ink.


Wednesday, November 20, 2013

MICROSCOPE

Microscope
6" x 9" Mixed Media Drawing on Distressed, Dictionary Page

I love drawing old objects.  I love the character and personality you can play with in an object that has a history.  I also love finding ways to use unusual color schemes with everyday items.  I liked throwing in a little lime green and violet where it didn't belong to give this object some jazz.

This piece was a lot of fun to create.  I have been on a bit of a scientific, academic trek lately and lot of my recent work is about that world.  This fellow is kinda a combination of a variety of different microscopes I've found so I apologize to those of you who know a thing or two about the real thing.  I took some artistic adventures building it.


Tuesday, November 19, 2013

BALLOON

"Balloon"
6" x 9" Mixed Media Drawing on Distressed, Dictionary Page

I'm heading to Albuquerque in a week to participate in the Holiday Rio Grande Art Festival and I figured I'd better include a hot air balloon piece.  Albuquerque (which I have just about learned how to spell and often hear in my head being said by Bugs Bunny) is the home of one of the biggest, hot air balloon festivals in the country.  I have always wanted to attend.  I hope a few hot air balloon fans will attend next weekend's art festival.

My goal for this piece was to create a nostalgic mood with my balloons. I deliberately left out any people in the baskets. I've actually ridden in a tethered balloon a few years ago but I would love to take one of those romantic rides across a beautiful landscape someday.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

LARGE HUMMINGBIRD

"Hummingbirds"
12" x 18" Mixed Media Drawing on Distressed, Parchment

I am really busy preparing inventory for my New Mexico show.  I only have a week and half to get things finished, lettered and framed so my studio is a real mess.

On of the most popular subjects I draw on dictionary pages is a hummingbird.  This whole series started with a hummingbird drawing and I've sold an original hummingbird drawing at every show or event I've done.  This subject seems to be charmed in some way.  I am currently completing another, new, small hummingbird drawing but I decided I needed to up my game and create a large scale drawing of these fascinating birds.

I never knew there were so many colors and varieties of hummingbirds.  They come in all sizes and each have unique wings, tails and beaks.  I decided to capture some variety on a large sheet of antique parchment.

I'm off to work more in my studio.  My goal is to have 50 framed pieces and lots of prints ready for my Thanksgiving weekend show.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

TIME FOR TORN PAPER COLLAGES IN MY CLASSROOM

 
I love this assignment.  Each year I have my non-drawing students enrolled in a crafts class create collages from the ripped up pieces of everyday magazines.  I stumbled on this technique about 15 years ago.  At one time, it was all I did artistically.  I entered and won two big collage competitions using this technique.  I have two 4' x 8' collages hanging in the Oklahoma Historical Museum.  I even collaged on top of a life-sized, fiberglass pig statue for a local event.  That huge pig is now at the national office of a pork producers association...I'm not sure where.

My students get to pick their resource picture and since this isn't a drawing class, I permit them to project it on a full or half sheet of foam board.  I push them to select colorful images with lots of details. They then start ripping and gluing.  They are required to cover the entire surface of the board and they must learn to navigate working on a table easel.

I have an exception group of students this year.  They are doing some beautiful pieces that I think will be "frame worthy."  I often take some of the top pieces to spring competitions.


Here is one of my torn paper collages.  This version of Mona hangs over my desk in my classroom.  She was one of my earliest pieces using this technique.

Saturday, November 09, 2013

ADDING BOOKPLATES TO MY ETSY SHOP


Every November I create original bookplates for friends and family and I've had requests to make these items available for purchase.  It's exciting to have people take an interest in something I make and I've been thinking about how best to sell bookplates for quite a while.

Well, today I pulled the trigger on including bookplates of my dictionary drawings and my black ink drawings in my online Etsy shop.  I hope my planning pays off and I've got a good product ready to go.

One of the tricks to any good shop is quality merchandise.  One of the obstacles (I felt) to having a nice, self-adhesive bookplate was a quality paper that would print well, hold up and not have the manufacturer logo written on the back.  I recently located self-adhesive paper that comes in a matte finish and appears to be nice and sturdy.  It is also plain on the back, peel-away surface.

Next came experimenting with various methods of packaging my bookplates.  I knew I wanted something attractive that would protect but still show off my artwork.  I was pleased to locate some relatively inexpensive cellophane sleeves that do the job.  I plan to add an insert in each little pocket about my studio.

So after a lot of hours of trial and error, I am busy posting my new merchandise in time for what I hope are possible, holiday sales.  Due to the man hours involved in personalizing, cutting and packaging these items I have priced them a little above some other bookplate sellers.  I also think the original artwork is worth some extra - at least I hope so.

We'll soon see.  Let me know what you think.

Thursday, November 07, 2013

TEDDY BEAR

"Teddy Bear"
6" x 9" Mixed Media Drawing on Distressed, Dictionary Page

Occasionally I will get a suggestion for a dictionary page that strikes my fancy.  A customer on Etsy recently asked if I would do a drawing of a Teddy Bear.  I though that was a great idea so here he is.

After raising three daughters I have a nice collection of Teddy Bears.  I also have an enormous, stuffed bear I purchased back in college when my mother and I took a trip through Alaska.  I found and bought it before we were actually in Alaska and I ended up lugging the thing for weeks on a cruise, on a train, in assorted buses and even on an airplane.  My mother probably did most of the lugging - without complaint I'm sure.

MANY years ago I even made a teddy bear for my middle daughter.  I remember I was choking and snorting from all the loose fur I stirred up while trying to cut and sew with furry fabric.  It turned out a lot like the bear in this drawing with the exception of a ballet tutu I had to include for my little ballerina.

This little guy isn't too furry and I wanted him to look a little worn and loved.  I'm not sure why his face turned out to be somewhat sad but maybe he hasn't had anyone notice him for awhile.  Come to think of it, I need to go find my friend from Alaska and give him some attention, too.

Wednesday, November 06, 2013

INVENTION

"Invention"
6" x 9" Mixed Media Drawing on Distressed Dictionary Page

This is a drawing I've wanted to do ever since I was first shown the picture by my Mother-in-law.  Now this isn't an original drawing but my reproduction of an actual invention and I think I can claim the right to recreate it on a dictionary page.  You see the inventor that originally created this drawing was my husband's Great, Great, Great Grandfather.

You may have seen this drawing posted around the Internet.  It's not hard to find but I never had noticed it until my Mother-in-law shared it a few months ago.  During her searches for family history she discovered it and has since uncovered the connection to our family.  It was an actual, serious invention for a flying apparatus a person could harness and use.  The patent for the invention was granted on March 6, 1889 to Mr. R. J. Spalding.

I'm not sure what happened to this invention - if it was ever created or tested or whether it worked or not. But I can't argue that it is an amazing idea in aviation so wanted to give it some notice in my work.

Tuesday, November 05, 2013

MUSTACHE

"Mustache"
6" x 9" Mixed Media Drawing on Distressed, Dictionary Page

Okay, I had to give in to the latest craze and draw something with a mustache.  For the past few years I've noticed mustaches on everything from baby pacifiers to band aids.  I decided it was time I joined in the fun.

I have to admit this dapper fella isn't from an original photograph (wish I knew him but I don't) but rather a public domain photograph I found online.  Since he wasn't copyrighted I decided he needed a little attention on a dictionary page of his own.

So for all you mustache maniacs - here ya go.

A NEW CONNECTION AT A MUSEUM

The Greater Southwest Historical Museum

The power of the internet continues to amaze me.  I was recently contacted by the Greater Southwest Historical Museum located in Ardmore, Oklahoma.  They wanted to include my Oklahoma made artwork in their gift shop.  They found my work online.  I was thrilled!

Ardmore is approximately six hours away from me.  This lovely museum features the history of South Central Oklahoma and now includes some of my prints. My first shipment of prints is heading that way today.  If you live nearby, drop in for a visit.

The Greater Southwest Historical Museum Website

Saturday, November 02, 2013

THE SECRET ART SHOW


I have been so anxious to share a recent, artistic opportunity that I've got to do.  A great friend in California contacted me and asked if I would donate a piece of artwork for their school arts program fundraiser.  I was so excited to be included in a long list of over 400 artists from around the country.  This list included celebrities, film makers, children, established and up-and-coming artists from around the country.

Last night the event was held and it looked amazing.  My work was right there with the likes of Conan O'Brien and illustrator for "The New Yorker," Gary Baseman to name a few.  Each contributor was given a small piece of watercolor paper and told to create whatever they wanted for the auction.  


I selected a small, antique dictionary for the support for my work and I decided to illustrate the word "Journey."  I thought journey was a suitable subject for this artistic adventure.  My dictionary page was pretty fragile to I dry mounted it directly to the provided watercolor paper.  I added a simple watercolor wash on the background.


Here is a photo taken at last night's event.  It looks amazing.  I wish I had been able to attend.  I am very grateful to my friend, Alexandra for including me.  I love supporting worthy causes and helping to build a better fine arts program for Burbank schools is a treat.

To see more about this fun event, see photos of the work and a list of the artists involved  here is their website.

The Secret Art Show Website

It's not a secret anymore and who knows, I might eventually learn who purchased my work....

Friday, November 01, 2013

PROGRESS ON 2013 BOOKPLATE


The first few dots are started.

I feel like I've got my life back after spending October working on our school's one-act play. Our kids competed last week at state and won runner-up.  We are always thrilled to place at a theater competition.  We presented our show one last time this week for parents and the community.  It was a joy to work with this group of students.

I have stacks of work in my studio to complete for my Thanksgiving show in New Mexico.  I am also excited to work on this year's bookplate.  Fortunately, I am teaching an ink unit for all of my advanced students so I have a work-related excuse to have my ink piece out on my desk.  I am trying to figure out the best approach to reproducing the look of burlap.  I think I have a technique figured out.  I am also trying to give the gardening gloves some texture and character.


Sunday, October 27, 2013

ALTHEA COMMISSION

Althea
61/2" x 10" Mixed Media Drawing on Distressed, Dictionary Page

A few months ago I received a commission via my website for a baby gift.  The child's name was going to be Althea and the family wanted a dictionary page in her honor.  So I set about trying to locate that name in one of my many stacks of dictionaries.  I finally tracked down the name in an old book and discovered that it was a botanical name for Hollyhock.

While emailing back and forth with the customer I learned that the child's mother preferred violet rather than little girl pinks.  So I completed the drawing about two months ago and have been waiting for the child arrive so I could include the birth date.

Althea made her entrance this past week and when I was notified I added that date to the page.  I thought this was a very sweet commission from a very thoughtful grandmother.  I pray for a sweet life ahead for the little one named in my work.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

STARTING MY 2013 INK BOOKPLATE

Each November I start a lengthy ink drawing unit with my students.  While they work, I work along on my own piece.  Over the past nine years I have reproduced my ink drawings as customized bookplates for friends, family and co-workers.  As the years have gone by, my drawings have become more and more elaborate and more and more personal.  I have also started drawing in ink using only stippling - which is zillions of tiny dots.

My composition

My subject for this year's bookplate are seed packets, burlap and lace.  I have had two beautiful granddaughters born this past year so I'm creating five seed packets that feature the flowers of the month for the birth dates of each of my five grandchildren.  I want to challenge myself to create burlap and lace which I think will be difficult and interesting.  Both burlap and lace are tremendously popular these days for brides, decorating and crafts.

A Black & White Photo Resource

I've gathered some of my subject matter together and taken a photo for resources.  This is just my starting point.  I intend to develop custom seed packets that have a vintage look.  I also want to add little seedlings in the flower pots.  I think I am going to make the gloves look used and pretty worn.

I'm excited to get started on drawing #10.  

I love that new art project feeling!

Monday, October 21, 2013

AP STUDENT SHIRT STUDIES


While reviewing my last few posts I realized I had never uploaded some photos of AP student's warm up drawings from the first of the year.  I have some wonderfully talented students and I've had their work on display at our high school.  Today I took them down and snapped a few photos.

My students had to do three drawings of everyday shirts.  The first drawing needed to be pretty straight forward and realistic.

Then my students were to create two more shirts using their choice of media but they were required to add some innovation and creativity to their drawings.






Thursday, October 17, 2013

ONE-ACT PLAY COMPETITION


It's been quite awhile since I've found time to blog and the reason is my husband and I have been busy building and preparing a one-act play for competition.  Each fall my husband (who is our high school speech and debate coach) directs a one-act play for his students.  I am usually drafted to help in some way - typically with scenery painting, costumes and make-up.

This year he decided to finally attempt the play "August: Osage County."  It is a monster production involving a two story set and lots of hair and make-up to age teenagers in older adults.  Not only do we create the show, we create it to travel for competition around the state.  One-act competition requires the performers to build the set, do the show and remove the set all within 45 minutes.  That means our enormous farm house has to be tucked into the wings of a strange theater then dragged onto the stage and organized into a working set in about a minute and a half.

This production has consumed our lives for the month of October.  We traveled five hours last week to present it at the regional competition and happily won first place.  Next week we travel another five hours to compete for a state title.  No easy feat but also a lot of fun and a personal challenge.  I don't know many award winning play productions who travel their sets in a horse trailer.

Now that the set is finished I have enjoyed some time back in my studio preparing for my Thanksgiving art show in New Mexico.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

OWL REVISITED

"Owl"
6" x 9" Mixed Media Drawing on Distressed, Dictionary Page

I have noticed owls just about everywhere - not the birds but rather owls in artwork, jewelry, T-shirt, you name it.  I sold my first owl drawing a long time ago and occasionally get a request for a print.  So I decided it was past time to revisit and redraw an owl.

This fellow features an extreme close up and I love the personality that developed in the drawing.  Sometimes a piece draws itself and without even thinking about it, some kind of mood or emotion appears.  I wasn't in a foul mood (a little pun there) while drawing this bird but he sure turned out intense.  I was also trying to instruct my students on how to create different textures in their drawings so it was beneficial to be working on making modeling (squiggly) marks to create the textures of this fella's feathers.

I am so happy that fall is finally arriving in our community and with it comes cooler temperatures and beautiful fall colors.  This little guy definitely has a bit of fall color in him.

Monday, September 23, 2013

FIGHT BREAST CANCER

"Fight"
6" x 9" Mixed Media Drawing on Distressed, Dictionary Page

I have had this piece in mind for a very long time.  I knew I wanted to create something about breast cancer and I knew I wanted to donate money earned from this artwork to a cancer related organization.  Everything just came together today so I could achieve both goals.

My mother had breast cancer and it ultimately spread and took her life.  My mother in law recently overcame her breast cancer after months of treatment.  I just had my annual mammogram and got my results in the mail today....a good report.

I have donated artwork for auction at our local cancer support fundraiser for a number of years.  This group of active volunteers raise money throughout the year to help with travel expenses and treatment costs for individuals fighting cancer.   We live in a really remote area so cancer patients have to travel hours for chemotherapy and radiation.

Today I found time to start and finish this piece.  I long ago decided to build my cancer themed piece on the word "fight." I also knew I didn't want to create the usual pristine, dainty ribbon but rather wanted to draw a tattered, worn ribbon that looked frayed and battle scarred.  I wanted to express the battle of fighting this insidious disease.

I plan to donate proceeds from the sale of this print and the original artwork directly to my local, cancer support group so that money will help others.  Next week our nation recognizes National Breast Cancer Awareness Month and our community will come together to give this and other generous gifts for our friends, family and neighbors.  I am very honored to be a part of that effort.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

TROLL

"Troll"
11" x 17" Mixed Media Drawing on Distressed, Parchment

It's been awhile since I've been in my studio working on my dictionary page series so this is the first such drawing I've done in  a long time.  A wonderful, childhood friend of mine commissioned this piece last spring.  He loves to call mean people trolls and he asked that I create an original troll drawing on that particular dictionary page.

I have been a fan of fairy tales since I was a child so I am quite familiar with folklore about trolls.  I know that they are unsavory characters that like to live in caves and under bridges and that they prey on unsuspecting travelers.  My troll has some unusual characteristics like nipple rings (which is a nod to my friend's sense of humor) and a bedraggled vulture as his sidekick.  I wanted him to have some props, too, so that's why I added the alligator skeleton.

One of my favorite parts of the drawing is the Troll's different eyes which I repeated in the vulture.  I've seen this device used in lots of cartoons and illustrations and have always wanted to play with it.

My troll is packaged and ready to travel to his new home in Oklahoma City.  I hope he entertains a lot of folks and makes my friend happy.

Saturday, September 14, 2013

MEETING THE ARTIST/ANIMATOR BILL PLYMPTON

Me & Bill Plympton at the Telluride Film Festival

I am finally unpacked and starting to get back to reality after a thrilling time at the 40th Telluride Film Festival.  I was in the same room with a lot of world famous celebrities and got to attend 11 films - some world premieres.

Visual artists and film makers generally go hand in hand and this year I got to meet and visit with the academy award nominated animator/artist, Bill Plympton.  Bill sees the world in an odd way and his animated shorts are always a bit bizarre.  He shared with me that he is currently working on a short with Salma Hayek Jimenez.  While we visited he drew me his famous cartoon, guide dog.  The drawing is now proudly hanging on the wall of my studio.

Here is a link to Bill's website





Bill Plympton - You Face (1987)

Friday, August 23, 2013

MY SUBSTITUTE BIBLE

The Cover of My "Art Class Bible"
or Substitute Guidebook

School is back in full swing and my enrollment has pretty much been established.  It takes a few days for kids to settle in and get situated in their classes.  I've had 15 or maybe more students start and drop my classes already for all sorts of reasons.  Our school is busting at the seams and my classes are full.

I am already planning for a substitute.  It's always rough to leave my classes this early in the school year but I have a very special event starting next week.  So I have been busy building my Art Class Bible of roll sheets, classroom rules and lesson plans.  I built this binder years ago and decorated it with some fun, Mona Lisa art.  I use Mona all over my room.

My husband are blessed beyond belief to get to attend the Telluride Film Festival in fabulous Telluride, Colorado.  Just visiting this gorgeous mountain town in the San Juan Mountains is terrific enough but we are gifted passes to the film festival.  (Thanks to the unbelievable generosity of two former students who host us each year.  Thanks Larry & Mitzi!)  Each year we get to attend world premieres of films and often mingle with the directors and celebrities involved.  I've met and talked to or at least been very near everyone from George Clooney (whom I actually talked to) to Daniel Day Lewis and Sean Penn and James Franco (got my picture with him). Unlike other film premieres this event has no red carpets or velvet ropes.  The stars, directors and audience all coexist in this tiny town which means you can be standing in line for the bathroom and notice Helen Mirren next to you (true story).  I know -  It's an amazing experience and we leave in just a few days.