Saturday, December 29, 2012

Staying The Course

I do not play golf but my husband, Rick does. He is always telling me about all the wildlife and amazing trees he sees while playing. In fact just the other day he saw a Bobcat.

So, I went with him to "ride along" while he played. I was set with my camera both long & short lenses, sketchbook and pencils. I got some really great tree pictures, mountains, landscape type shots but only one wildlife shot - a heron, he was a beauty. But, no road runners, which are suppose to be everywhere, no bunnies, hardly any other birds. It was an off day.

All is not lost, like I said, great tree pictures. Rick did snap off a couple pictures with his phone of the Bobcat. We will just have to see what the trees & the heron inspire. I did do a couple sketches which I was planning to include in the post but can't find my sketchbook this morning. I really need to organize both my studio & office - today's project!

Bob the cat

You Looking at Me???


Cactus Ball - Hole In One?


Friday, December 28, 2012

Lights - Camera - Action

Okay the action is more of a slow walk or ride but there were lights and lots of cameras. Rick & I took some time one evening and went to the Desert Botanical Gardens for the Luminaries. As always it was lovely. One of our favorite holiday things to do, walk around the garden by soft candle light, listen to music and sip on a warm drink. It was a good way to take in those moments when you need to slow down an appreciate what this season is all about.

We also did a little drive to check out holiday decorations. Loaded with lights may be an understatement. It was a holiday wonderful, this family had not only decorated the front of their home but the driveway leading into the backyard and the pool! It was one of those places that just made you smile. They invite you to get out of your car and walk around. It was magical!

Desert Botanical Gardens


One of the favorite photo spots in the garden

Music in the Gardens
Music by the fire
Winterize your pool
Winter Wonderland

Monday, December 24, 2012

Twas the Night Before Christmas

This poem was first published on Dec. 23, 1823 in the Troy Sentinel upstate New York.
I remember reading this to my nieces and brother when we were all little, later read it to my own children and even sang it in my middle school choir. It brings back many happy memories, hope it does for you and yours, Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays...

'Twas the night before Christmas, when all thro' the house,
 Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse;
 The stockings were hung by the chimney with care,
 In hopes that St. Nicholas soon would be there;
 The children were nestled all snug in their beds,
 While visions of sugar plums danc'd in their heads,
 And Mama in her 'kerchief, and I in my cap,
 Had just settled our brains for a long winter's nap-
 When out on the lawn there arose such a clatter,
 I sprang from the bed to see what was the matter.
 Away to the window I flew like a flash,
 Tore open the shutters, and threw up the sash.
 The moon on the breast of the new fallen snow,
 Gave the lustre of mid-day to objects below;
 When, what to my wondering eyes should appear,
 But a minature sleigh, and eight tiny rein-deer,
 With a little old driver, so lively and quick,
 I knew in a moment it must be St. Nick.
 More rapid than eagles his coursers they came,
 And he whistled, and shouted, and call'd them by name:
 "Now! Dasher, now! Dancer, now! Prancer, and Vixen,
 "On! Comet, on! Cupid, on! Dunder and Blixem;
 "To the top of the porch! to the top of the wall!
 "Now dash away! dash away! dash away all!"
 As dry leaves before the wild hurricane fly,
 When they meet with an obstacle, mount to the sky;
 So up to the house-top the coursers they flew,
 With the sleigh full of Toys - and St. Nicholas too:
And then in a twinkling, I heard on the roof
 The prancing and pawing of each little hoof.
 As I drew in my head, and was turning around,
 Down the chimney St. Nicholas came with a bound:
 He was dress'd all in fur, from his head to his foot,
 And his clothes were all tarnish'd with ashes and soot;
 A bundle of toys was flung on his back,
 And he look'd like a peddler just opening his pack:
 His eyes - how they twinkled! his dimples how merry,
 His cheeks were like roses, his nose like a cherry;
 His droll little mouth was drawn up like a bow,
 And the beard of his chin was as white as the snow;
 The stump of a pipe he held tight in his teeth,
 And the smoke it encircled his head like a wreath.
 He had a broad face, and a little round belly
 That shook when he laugh'd, like a bowl full of jelly:
 He was chubby and plump, a right jolly old elf,
 And I laugh'd when I saw him in spite of myself;
 A wink of his eye and a twist of his head
 Soon gave me to know I had nothing to dread.
 He spoke not a word, but went straight to his work,
 And fill'd all the stockings; then turn'd with a jerk,
 And laying his finger aside of his nose
 And giving a nod, up the chimney he rose.
 He sprung to his sleigh, to his team gave a whistle,
 And away they all flew, like the down of a thistle:
 But I heard him exclaim, ere he drove out of sight-
 Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good night.

Sunday, December 16, 2012


Ch-ch-chilly weather here, there, everywhere. I was in Portland, OR for the last week visiting my son, John. It was as Portland is this time a year, somewhat rainy. There was a full day of sun, there was misty days and the temperature was not near as cool as I was expecting.

I did a quick visit to the Portland Museum of Art, an interesting building, with lots of stairs going different directions. I did not record the names of the artists works I saw at the museum but you may recognize some of the works that I enjoyed.

Got back to AZ Friday night, it had rained, the sky was filled with clouds making it a lovely sunset to drive back home. In the middle of the night the rains in AZ came again and continued all day Saturday. This is some what rare to see rain all day long. The trees, plants, cactus are loving it, flowers are blooming. It is amazing to see the cactus swell with the rains, the trees get greener before your eyes and the smell in the air, oh so sweet.

I look forward to changes as this year is coming to a close.

Saturday, December 8, 2012


As one projects is wrapped up, literally and mailed off, I think of what comes next? I reflect, not only on the next art project but on friends and family. On past, present and future, I take a moment to remember and plan. I look at photographs that will become a new pastel painting. I also look at these photographs and enjoy the memory of that trip. I realized as I was looking through these photos this morning that I take a lot of photos with reflections, which made me smile. Hope they give you a smile for today too.

Friday, December 7, 2012

Finishing Touches

Yesterday was a good day. I spent a fair amount of it in the studio until I realized I was out of a couple things and had to run to the local art supply store. Today I just need to add finishing touches to my little booklets and should get the package in the mail today, right on schedule! Another good day!!

After I get things mailed off, I need to re-think my studio...clean & organize. With all the moving over the last two years there are still things missing??? Will re-visit some of my stored containers see what surprises I may find. That will be this afternoons project and hoping it will be done tonight as I have other projects waiting for me this weekend.

Hand made paper booklets - just because I like to make them

small pastels, watercolors & graphite orginals

Thursday, December 6, 2012

It's Going To Be A Good Day...

I am willing this to be a good day. To make, matt, wrap, and pack everything I need to do for the show coming up at Anne Gibson Snyder's. I have to take in account shipping time and that there is holiday shipping going on to, may take an extra day.

Some things have worked, some not so much. I am still working on the sealing technique for my pastels. I am experimenting using different papers to see how they react. This is were the not so much comes in, some of the sanded papers do not take the sprays as well. They actually do a little melting and cause the image to darker.

So, I will stop experimenting for the moment just work and do what I do best. Work under pressure, it is going to be a good day.

me at work

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

A Moment in Time

I woke this morning in the dark, before the birds began their songs. My mind was racing with ideas, projects to finish this week, getting things in the mail before the big rush, finish the holiday decorating, all that fun stuff...

Then after my coffee the sun started to rise. I knew it was telling me to take a moment and enjoy this time. It has been unseasonably warm from what I hear, not only here in AZ but also back on the east coast. Because it is so warm, I continue to sit outside and write or paint. It is a good thing, it is truly something to be thankful for, this moment in time, this peace, this nature. Thank you...

Taking Time to Smell the Roses in Portland, OR

A Time to Paint in New Mexico

A Time to Share with Friends in Quebec

A Time To Travel With Friends, Fox Island, Alaska

A Time to Explore Far Away Place, South Africa
A Time to Remember all those places, people, adventures, inspiration, a time to stop and watch the sunrise.

Monday, December 3, 2012

Nature Calls

Before the sun came up, before the colors started appearing behind the mountains, I heard the great horned owl. In fact I have heard two, but have only seen one. There may be a mate, will keep my eyes and ears on alert. The gila woodpeckers and the cactus wren are very talkative in the morning. The hummingbirds sleep a little later but lately they too have not only done their chattering noise when others are around their feeder. They have been sitting on the branches making little talking noises. As beautiful as hummingbirds are they lack the gift of a beautiful song, this is just my opinion.

This morning I woke to nature calls, even the coyote were in rare form. Singing out to each other. I am sure they were giving direction as to where to meet for breakfast. I joined them with my coffee and watched as a magenta band ran across the sky. I take a deep breath and walked gently into this morning.

Saturday, December 1, 2012

On The First Day of...

December already, does time really fly? Sometimes it feels like it is just moving way too fast. It is the first day of December, oh my! Good news I did get a drawing day in yesterday and will do the same today along with doing a little creative cooking.

The holidays are upon us, celebrating, sharing and giving are part of the season. The gift of art, the art of giving.

Today I plan to take a moment to breath, to take a moment to create and take a moment to share.

Peace from Jerome, AZ

Holidays in Jerome, AZ

Chili Pepper wreath from Sedona, AZ

Cross of Chili Peppers

Friday, November 30, 2012

Get Your Motor Running...

The last couple of nights watching the moon, the sunsets and this morning's sunrise is so inspirational. Even thou I get my inspiration from nature. I need deadlines to get my self in gear, to literally get my artistic motor running.

There are challenges to being on one side of the country and wanting to continue to do shows on the other side of the country. Not letting go of those friends and connections. For the past several years Marilu & I have done a Holiday Show hosted by Anne Gibson Snyder - "Homemade for the Holidays". Each year she presents a theme to create your art from, this year it is the animals among us. This would seem a no-brainer for artists that do animals all the time. Yet, I kept procrastinating on how and what to create. Do I do original pastels, do I make prints of them, do I do both, what animals give you the feeling of winter or the holidays?

Watching the sunrise this morning, thinking of the skies I have seen, got me thinking of patterns, abstractions in nature. How can I use some of this as background to create small works with animals. I have my inspiration, I have my motivation, I have a direction to move forward - so today I work. Hopefully by this weekend I will have a few preview images to post. Until then here are some of the inspirations in the skies.

What's That Sound???

You know you are in Wyoming when you wake to the sound of horses. With limited wi-fi service it has been a lot harder to get blogs written a...