Thursday, October 19, 2006

Mood Swing

Mood swings; pretty much describes my current reality and the Atlanta weather. As fall arrives we are experiencing beautiful, foggy mornings brought on by the extremes of hot to cold, dry to wet weather. It brings back memories of the wonderful foggy mornings in the mountains of North Carolina where I taught beginning artists at the John C. Campbell Folk School.

“Mood Swing” is the title of one the many photos I took while teaching at the school. I would love to be there again, sitting in the swing this time, watching the fog lift, revealing the autumn foliaged mountains. Photos have the magic to transport us to another place and time and they often trigger emotions and issues we are currently dealing with.

Friday, September 01, 2006

Hurricane Season

Wet reminders
Still Surviving

This is one of the photos I took in New Orleans in June of 2005 before Katrina. I am so grateful that I was able to visit there again before the disaster. I love this city, it antiquity, it’s style, it’s people and it’s creativity. Katina will long live in my memory and I pray that no one ever has to endure such a disaster again.
Even before Katrina this time of year has always created a feeling of anxiety for me. My house being surrounded by old oak trees with shallow roots, the hurricane season is a major concern. Falling trees and heavy rains flooding my basement more than once and a leaky roof are experiences that I pray I don’t have to endure again.

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Found Treasures

Since I was a young girl living in Ohio I’ve been fascinated with fossils and shells. We lived near Dayton in a small town now named Fairborn, (if memory serves me right) a combined township of Fairfield and Osborn. Apparently this area of Ohio was once covered with water so plant and water-creature fossils were not hard to find amongst the rocks. I remember spending hours looking for and collecting them. I’m surprised I no longer have them, but because they were so commonplace they probably were not considered treasures by anyone but me, just more junk for my traveling military family to deal with. Which may explain why my basement is now filled with my ”junk” treasures. Since I’ve retired I have to deal with disposing most of it. It is so hard to let go when such fun things can be created like the “found treasure” creation at

Sunday, July 16, 2006

Summer Burn-Out

My watercolor alumni group chose vegetables as this month’s watercolor challenge. I painted the few veggies that have survived this year’s crazy weather. My garden looks much like I have been feeling; “burnt-out”! There are too many projects and then interruptions when I do get involved with one. For instance, I just received an email saying the free HP eBay course I signed up for months ago is now starting! Like I need another project now! However since it took so long to get in I feel the need to do it. So I’m off again in another direction, but with much less enthusiasm!

Monday, July 10, 2006

4th of July Fallout

Every 4th of July my neighborhood fills with cars to view the fireworks from the local park. The past couple of years the rain has postponed the show to the following weekend. Fewer people show up and I reap the benefits of having my street side view to myself with only the trees blocking some if the action. Fun for the moment, but the holiday interruption is a headache. I realize most people look forward to the long weekend, but some how the weekend spills over into the rest of the week and it’s nearly impossible to get things back on track. Much like the interruptions I’ve had with my projects. I’m still trying to finish the graduation videos I started for my grandchildren. Constant interruptions, delays and software crashes made me shelve this project for a while and I’ve started working on some digital collages requested by a local publisher, but the holidays have broken down the communication with them! They are all behind due to the break. Forget the fireworks, I feel like exploding. Grrrr!! I’ll take this time to get back the unfinished kitchen.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

New Workshop in the Works

If you have been following my blog you know how much Photoshop plays a role in my art. I use it not only as a tool to compose studio artwork but also for digital collage and painting and to enhance and manipulate photos. I have been putting together some collage and mix media projects and workshops. Now since I posted my digital drawings I have had inquires about creating a course around this technique. Needless to say I’m very flattered and excited about it. So while I clear up all the other unfinished projects, my mind will be putting all the pieces together to launch this. If you think you may be interested, have a opinion or want to know more about it please feel free to email me. There will be no obligation or spamming if you do so. Thanks

Monday, June 19, 2006

Photoshopping Again

The need to use and learn more about my new camera prompted me to join Sheila Finkelstein’s photography group. Sheila’s workshop goes beyond photography. She uses it as a tool for insight and creativity. Being a visual artist and not a writer, I am using my images for their artistic possibilities. I used Photoshop CS2 to covert this photo I took of wood scrapes to a digital drawing. You may view more of these creations on my class Flicker site

Sunday, June 11, 2006

Watercolor Slideshow

This month’s watercolor challenge for Cathy Johnson’s Alumni group was birds. I have been trying to create a slideshow of my grandchildren’s graduation and decided to create a slideshow of my bird watercolor painting to test of some of my options. You can view the results at
You may have to click on the title and then the play arrow to see it. Enjoy!

Friday, June 02, 2006

They've Graduated!

Graduation is over and it was quite an event. 750 graduates! I was very proud of my three grandchildren and moved by the whole experience. The only disappointment was my inexperience with my new camera and my vantage point in the arena. Bottom line, lousy photos! Now that it is all behind me I’m back to finishing all the remodeling, sorting, cleaning up home and yard.
Not much time for blogging, classes, online groups and art.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Time In A Bottle

Time moves much too fast as two more chapters have ended. Three of my grandchildren are graduating from high school this week. Which means this photo was taken 7 years ago! I found it when I was looking for photos of my art show tent to show to the woman who bought the tent the other day. This picture certainly brought back a lot of fond memories and tears to my eyes. Like to song goes, “ If I could put time in a bottle,” this is one time I would save. The picture was taken by one of my great loves that is no longer in my life. I am wearing a wonderful necklace he bought me for my birthday. It was handcrafted by one of the show artisans. It is a sterling silver frog with a large semi precious stone (can’t remember the name) for the body. I think I will wear it to the graduation party as it will go perfect with my green dress and will add a special meaning to the event! Fortunately the activities surrounding the graduation have taken my mind off the implications of selling the tent and the finality (I think) of my outdoor shows.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Bamboo, Bambooooo

Okay, enough is enough! The bamboo sprout hunting is not fun anymore. To think this will go on for weeks. It gives me nightmares every year. It's growing under my deck that's the biggest pain. I worry about it invading my basement, ughhh! I think my watercolor sketch shows my agitation.

Monday, May 01, 2006

Sprout Hunting

My small back yard is enclosed by a grove of bamboo planted by my neighbor with my permission. I love the privacy, but unfortunately I did not know it would become a springtime nightmare. I had the zoo come a couple of years ago to cut it back, however they only wanted the new growth. I try to stay ahead of it, which I’ve always disliked doing, especially under the deck, so I decided to make it a game, hunting for new sprouts like Easter eggs. There are so many wonderful things one can do with bamboo, fences, furniture, chimes, candle holders, etc. Not to mention the great subject it makes for art.

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Lessons Learned

This trunk is my creation for the final Photoshop class I’ve been taking online. Our assignment was to create a travel collage. As usual I wanted to push it beyond a typical poster. It seemed fitting with to move on with a travel trunk that would symbolically contain my lessons learned. Creating it involved using every technique I've learned in this class and spending hours being totally absorbed in manipulating pixels into an illusion of an object. Why create an image of something I could just take a picture of? Because I couldn't. It didn’t exist until now. Isn’t that the joy and purpose of being an artist?

Saturday, April 08, 2006

Evolution of a Painting

In the process of trying to learn Flash MX, I decided to try and create a video of the evolution of one of my abstract paintings. Unfortunately I can’t upload it to my web site because my current site was created with the host’s template and is not compatible with Flash. I decided to go public using YouTube. ( click here then on the picture after you get there.) Please let me know what you think by email or post a comment here. Thanks and Enjoy!

Monday, April 03, 2006

The Birth Of Neptune

This is my most recent collage. I’m enjoying all the online classes I’m taking, but now that spring is here I’m having a hard time adding in all the home maintenance chores. I must get away form this computer. It has become an addiction!

Friday, March 24, 2006

Project Overload

I have really taken on a lot this month. Along with taxes I’m enrolled in two new online classes. FlashMX is one of them, which I may use as a teaching tool. Since I enrolled I’ve discovered other programs that are free and might be easier. Isn’t that always the way? Oh well, being an information hog, I’m enjoying it. I’m also adding to my digital collage skills by taking an Adobe Photoshop Elements class. It’s not as sophisticated as her big sister Photoshop CS and a bit confusing after using PSCS, but it has a lot of nifty little presets. I’ve posted one of the pieces I created from the pattern, texture assignment using a key as part of the theme. Most of the students are interested in “scrapebooking” so it’s my guess they may not relate to my creations! I have also created some new digital paintings and have posted them on my website .
Back to taxes!

Monday, March 06, 2006

Spring Cleanup Time

The time has come to get outside and clean up the debris of winter. You have no idea how much I love this time of year. I belong to an online art group whose members are watercolorists and sketch artists. I’m enjoying getting back to drawing. My little birdhouse sitting outside my studio window was the inspiration for this sketch .

Saturday, February 25, 2006

Art Classes

I received an email inquiring about what art classes I plan to teach, digital collage or watercolor? Both, if I can, but my current thinking, (subject to change), is not classes, but projects offered on CD’s or online PDF’s. The watercolor projects will be mixed water media, meaning watercolor, acrylic, watercolor crayon and pencil with collage. This is the technique I taught at the John Campbell Folk School a few years ago. The image I posted is one of the watercolor, acrylic and collage creations done on distressed watercolor board.

Monday, February 13, 2006

Award Notice

The wait has ended for the AAC awards to be posted on their site. I'm pleased to say that I won an Honorable Mention for my funny little abstract “Power Play”. I regret not entering one of my “far-out” drawings, but I waited too late as usual to do one. I have this desire to do something with a fish next time. In the meantime I’m still consumed with watercolor.

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Power Play

I learned yesterday that the upcoming traveling show of the Atlanta Artist’s Center’s entry deadline is Saturday at noon. I thought I had missed it and wasn’t prepared to enter this time. Now that I have a few more days I’m painting away. This is one is I started in a class I took last fall. It was much larger, but I felt it needed to be cropped and a few final bits of calligraphy added to tie the two larger areas together. The collage piece has the word Power printed on it so I decided to title the piece “Power Play”. I always struggle to name my work as I think it forces the viewer to see it my way. The other side of the coin is my title often speaks to the viewer as much as the work itself.

Saturday, January 28, 2006

Soul Searching

I’ve been doing a lot of soul searching lately. I’ve said before, I’m not fond of writing journals. I’m sure the fact that English was not my favorite subject in school is no surprise. I have butchered the English language in this blog with my poor grammar and typing skills. HOWEVER, as an artist I do love using digital collage as a way to get my "insides out".. I spent the day working with Photoshop creating this personal collage from one of my pictures taken in Provence and other pictures I have on file. I am happy with the results and plan to do more of them.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Scandinavian Ingenuity

When I opened the box of my assemble-it-yourself kitchen cart I was impressed with the compact, organized packing of the contents. My first impulse was to open all the little packages and jump right in and start screwing (up). I usually read instructions only when I’m elbow deep in frustration, but I listened to my intuition this time and read them first. Glad I did, as the simple as the project appeared, there was an exact procedure that had to be followed. I gave into the designer’s plan and marveled, as I worked, at the precision and planning that went into it. I don’t believe I’ve ever seen such attention to detail. My old “anal” Danish boyfriend couldn’t have done it better. The cart is finished and gracing my kitchen so I decided to create a collage in honor of the project.

Monday, January 23, 2006

Digital Photograms

Still inspired by photograms, I decided to play with the idea of creating a pseudo photogram using my scanner ( scannergram?) and Photoshop. I scanned several junk items into Photoshop then inverted the image to create a negative. Quick and simple. To take it a step further I added a color layer to try and imitate Thomas Barrow's technique of spray painting and stenciling on top of the photogram. To push the color enhancement I used digital filters. Something that could have been done without Photoshop in the darkroom with actual negatives or slides. It was a fun experiment and something that I’m sure I will incorporate in future work.

Sunday, January 22, 2006


I found an old Camera & Darkroom magazine in my stack of photography magazines. Apparently the magazine is no longer published as I could not Google it up. The publisher was L.F.P. Inc., which, according to my search, published Hustler, so maybe that explains why it is no longer in print. Interesting photography “bedfellows”!

Leafing through my copy of C&D I found an article about photograms. It caught my attention because of my fascination with digital collage. The layered effect often achieved in photograms looks much like the layered collages I create in Photoshop. A photogram is basically an abstract photographic image of light and shadow created without a camera. It is actually a negative created by placing opaque and/ or translucent objects on a sheet of photographic paper then exposed to light. It is processed and developed like a traditional photograph. The results are white silhouettes on a black background.

Davis at wrote, "Photograms have borne a number of names. Henry Talbot made "photogenic drawings" in the 19th century. Christian Schad, a German artist, made "Schadographs" after World War I. He exposed chance arrangements of found objects and waste materials (such as torn tickets, receipts, and rags) on photographic film. U.S. artist Man Ray undertook similar experiments, which he called "Rayographs," that were effected by arranging translucent and opaque materials on photographic paper. Lucia Moholy and Lazlo Moholy-Nagy's cameraless images bore the name that we most often use now with this class of images, "Photograms." They were interested in photography as a medium of light and form, not sentiments or personal feelings that are the concerns of other art forms. Lotte Jacobi called her lyrical abstractions, made in the 1940s and 1950s, "photogenics." *

Davis gives instructions for making a photogram, but I think I’ll avoid all the darkroom, exposure stuff and shoot for a “digital “ photogram.

Monday, January 09, 2006

What was I thinking?

It seemed so wonderful in my mind, meaning the remodeled kitchen . My refrigerator was located in a very cramped spot and I found it hard to deal with. For years I put up with it and then I finally came up with a solution. Too much to go into here, but it involved moving a door to the window location and making a new water connection and electrical outlets. Now that the move has been made I’m having regrets. It looks like a white elephant has moved into my kitchen! I keep telling myself I’ll get use to it and love it, but so far it hasn’t worked. I’ve cut up the base cabinets that I wanted removed to make more space. I lost a lot of valuable storage, (ugh!) so I’m trying to create some overhead cabinets out of them. I have no idea what I’m doing so it’s taking me forever to move forward with finishing them. I guess my disappointment has dampened my enthusiasm and vision. Back to the drawing board!

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Ikea Motivation

Today I made my first visit to Ikea, the Swedish budget furnishings warehouse. It opened this past year and I’ve been looking forward to taking the time to visit. UNBELIEVABLE! I could have bought half the stuff in there. It really appealed to my thrifty, arty personality. I couldn’t resist some of the lighting fixtures for my kitchen, which is still a work in progress. The whole experience renewed my motivation to finish the job! So my first goal of 2006 is to get back to the tools and get it done as I have only 45 days to test my new purchases.
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