shadow play take 2.. or 3 or 4..

I love the shadows. Especially shadows that artwork makes. In the last few weeks I have been able to experience such shadows in abundance. MoMA, The Dairy Barn, Kennedy Museum of Art. How lucky am I? Here are a few of my favorites:
edge of a wall hanging by Cecilia Joe at KMA

edge of an art quilt by Danette Pratt at The Dairy Barn

bronze shadow makers by Dorothy Dehner at MoMA

bit of a wall hanging by Lenore Tawney at MoMA

wired orb shadows by Ruth Asawa at MoMA

corner of an art quilt by Sara Impey at The Dairy Barn

corner of a wall hanging by Sheila Hicks at MoMA

edge of an art quilt by Shulamit Liss at The Dairy Barn

floor shadow of an art quilt by Sue Benner at The Dairy Barn
Hope you have enjoyed these shadows as much as I did. I think I might make some art that makes shadows also soon....

a conversation

As I prepare to share some of my art with you, please enjoy this interview recently recorded with Nathalie Kalbach. It's really more of a conversation than an interview, Nat is lovely to talk to! And you'll love her new book Artful Adventures in Mixed Media! So grab your favorite beverage and settle in...

click for the interview!

stitched paint strokes

Usually I stitch with a plan in mind. Meaning that I have seen in my minds eye what I want to achieve and I am stitching towards that vision. But sometimes.... just for the fun of it I want to stitch with no plan. Just meandering and enjoying the process, the colors and the texture that is being created.

For inspiration I'll pull out a picture and use my stitches to interpret that picture. I don't mean exactly, just the feeling of it. Like a moody autumnal landscape for example. I'll concentrate on the color, the direction of the vegetation.... This exercise is lots of fun to do with painting by famous artists. I'll open up a big heavy art book or print an image from the internet and try to capture the feeling of it with my stitches.

So where am I leading with all this? Well... I am trying to entice you to take a vacation with me. Yes. a vacation. In Ticino, that's in Switzerland. In August. I know it seems so far way, August and Switzerland. But August will be here in a blink of an eye and Switzerland is just a hop, skip and a jump away!
a detail of a Klimt
my stitchy interpretation
Picasso is fun to play with
fun to choose the fabrics and the stitches
Rothko's serenity is interpreted well in silk
simple is best
that's the hotel!

and that's the scenery!
So? Come stitch some paint strokes with me and enjoy the end of summer in Ticino!

the little hump backed horse

Hello! long time.... Happy New Year!

As you might imagine life has been busy. The projects in the pictures below have consumed my life for the past two months. It was fun, challenging and hard work. And now it's done. Here's proof (in order of appearance on stage):
Ivan and the magical horses
Magical horses again
Ivan and the Little Humpbacked Horse find the Firebirds feather
the bazaar scene
storytellers
The Tzar arrives
the Tzar and his Attendant
the Firebirds dance
and dance some more
I love this blurry image of the Firebird being captured
The Tzarina Maiden
the Moon and the Sun
the Fishes
Fish begging forgiveness from the King Whale 
more Fishes
The Tzarina Maiden with her Prince Ivan magically transformed 
storytellers
my favorite colorful players
how adorable are they?
and for good measure the Moon and the Sun again...
That was a lot of pictures I know, hope you enjoyed them, I could have posted many many more! Here's the English version of the story if you would like to read it.
Now off to clean up my studio and make some art!

Oh and I must confess... I stole all these pictures from my friend Ekaterina who painted the fish heads and horse heads for me. I have an excuse! I was back stage helping with costume changes! And she did give me permission. Really.

jumpstarting!

I'm excited to announce that I'll be participating as an artist in Creative JumpStart (CJS) 2016, run for the 5th time by Nathalie Kalbach. If you're not familiar with CJS, it's a one-of-a-kind online event to kick your creativity into high gear in January 2016.

Learn techniques, discover new materials, and connect with artists and crafters. There is SO much cool stuff to learn!

Throughout January participants get 25 downloadable videos from 24 featured artists. I'm proud to be one of those artists, called “JumpStarters.” See for yourself:


Head on over to Nathalie's site to sign up and for more details:

http://nathaliesstudio.com/cjs

You get 25 videos for just $45 (USD) for a limited time if you sign up before December 31, 2015 at 11:59pm (EST)! But wait – it gets better: as my valued reader, you’ll get $5 extra off today. Just use this coupon code during checkout: cjs2016
*This is a limited offer valid from 10:00am Dec 4, 2015 to 11:59pm EST on Dec 11, 2015.

So what are you waiting for? Sign up here nathaliesstudio.com/cjs, and apply the coupon code during check out process. Thanks!!
I cannot wait for you to see my video, I had so much fun making it!

happy summertime!!

Oh boy! What happened to June?? Well here's a quick show and tell in pictures:
I've been stitching a bridge on some buildings in plastic.
I've been cutting out plastic verbiage for graffiti
I've been putting the pedal to the metal with lots of thread-sketching
I have embroidered a lyre bird
I have started embroidering an arctic fox. This is my outline.
Trying to figure out how to stitch fur. It ain't for sissies...
This is the undercoat, now I've begun the topcoat, I'll let you know how I mess this up...
Oh and yesterday I published my June newsletter, take a read here if it wasn't delivered to your in-box.
Thanks for reading!

magic monday

I haven't been in my studio since I finished Spruce Street. Life got in the way. But I haven't stopped thinking about what I want to do once I got to the studio.... Here are a few things that caught my eye during the thinking stage.
beautiful bouquet
sunset lighting up newly minted leaves
a fabulous chandelier
And today I did get into the studio. For just a little bit....
a start of something new.....
Now full steam ahead! There is much to be accomplished....

friday in the studio

So much going on this week and next..... here's a short and sweet version of what is happening in the studio:
Lots of hand stitching on the companion piece to Iron Spine
Many more X's to go on the roof of the latest home portrait
Playing with TAP for a detail on a piece that I have been stitching on for a long time
Finishing up a few samples for an Easter Egg Felting workshop next Saturday
Preparing for the FIVE day workshop at Hudson River Valley Art workshops
and finally something for moi! I'm nuno felting a piece of snowdyed silk for a sweater...
So as you see I have quite a few balls up in the air, good thing I work well under pressure! Hope to share some finished work soon.

instafun

I know that some of my blog readers don't belong to social media sites, so I thought I'd share somethings I've been posting on Instagram here. Instagram is an app and a social media platform on the smart phone that lets you apply filters to photographs and post them for your followers to see.

I think of it as rather fun and post not only my artwork related photos, but also nature stuff and general life stuff that comes my way. Here's just a few of photos I posted in last two weeks.
I made a flower out of fallen leaves and propped it up on a log.
A weekend later I was impressed that it was still on the log and dried beautifully.
Fun with mirrors and filters while watching a ballet class.
Sheep in a meadow and a watercolor app? How can I resist?
I've been stitching tiny pieces while in a waiting room and shared.
And this is the view on the worktable in my studio this morning as seen on Instagram and Facebook.
Hope you enjoyed my little social media tour. Instafun!

art filled

Last weekend was very very art-filled. I dubbed it "art-ovewhelmed". And have been digesting it ever since... You might have seen Vivien's and Kristin's blogs for very full reviews of all the exhibits we indulged in. Do go over to there for some wonderful observations and photographs.

Here I will indulge in showing the many details that are still burned into my eyelids... They are motley bunch from several exhibits and the streets of NYC.
construction view from the Highline
intentional plastic bag art
somebody just wants love...
art by Tegan M. Brozyna at the Textile Arts Center
Molasses footprints at Kara Walker Domino
molasses melting
molasses chunks
natural plastic bag art
Swoon details at the Brooklyn Museum
Swoon details at the Brooklyn Museum
Swoon lace sails at the Brooklyn Museum
Swoon larger than life at the Brooklyn Museum
Swoon details at the Brooklyn Museum
Swoon details at the Brooklyn Museum
I highly recommend indulging in some artful excursions for recharging the batteries....

one month!

To go before the Create Mixed Media Retreat in New Jersey starts! I am so looking forward to connecting with artistic students and teachers and staff! I find it very invigorating to a part of so much creativity all in one place....

So to recap.. I am teaching the following workshops at the Retreat, and I hope to see many of you there!
On Wednesday, July 9th, from 9A to 4P - The Mystique of Plastique
On Thursday, July 10th, from 9A to 4P - Mix Your Media with Photoshop
On Thursday, July 10th, from 6P to 9P - Window to Your Art
On Friday, July 11th, from 9A to 4P - Felted Ornaments
I'm getting all my materials and samples ready! See you there!

CREATE

Registration is open! For the CREATE Retreat in Somerset, NJ. I am so excited to be part of the artful instructor team for this inspiring get-together of like minded souls! And it's on the East Coast! How cool is that? Very cool!
So what am I teaching you ask? I'll tell ya! With a few teaser photos too.

On Wednesday, July 18th, I am teaching a six hour workshop called Mix Your Media With Photoshop, where - you guessed it - you get to learn some basic Photoshop skills and print your creations on your own fabric or recycled media.
Then on Wednesday evening, I am teaching a three hour workshop called Window To Your Art. Here you'll need all those scraps that you can't throw out, I'll give you good reason to hold on to them. And a chance to get a bit messy too!
On Thursday, July 19th, the day workshop is called  From a Snapshot to a Scarf in a Few Hours! And yes indeed, through the magic of Photoshop, I will show you how to get from a snapshot to a scarf in six hours.
On Thursday evening it's the Hand Stitched Jewels workshop. Another good reason to save your scraps and put them to good use!
So come join me and other art-minded students and instructors and have fun for a few days in New Jersey!

rockstar boro

When Melly Testa started her Rockstar boro project earlier this month and called for people to join her, I jumped! Of course I didn't really have the understanding of what boro was... I have had a vintage 60's coat dress that I overdyed waiting for me to work on it in my studio for a while now. But that wasn't boro! It didn't need mending, just embellishment. A bit deflated at first, I went digging in my mending bin (it's quite large, as I tend to avoid mending at all costs) and there were my favorite jeans that were already in a state of boro! 
You see I had loved these jeans so much that I actually patched them when they first ripped at the knee. Just a piece of muslin at the back and some plain stitches with a variegated thread. Little did I know that it was beginnings of boro! Then the jeans ripped again and into the mending basket they went; I must have had a different favorite pair of pants then, as they laid forgotten for a while. 
So now I have them out and I dug through my scraps to pull out a few that spoke to me... 
Then I edited them. I'll get to stitching soon... Now I want to wear these jeans - they still fit!

city inspiration

Last Sunday I took my kids to the Katonah Museum of Art for a family art day based on their current exhibition titled "New York, New York!". The girls had sooo much fun participating in different art projects! I got inspired too and could not keep my sketchbook in my purse. They were building and decorating buildings and I drew a little. 'Twas so much fun!

A temporary installation of kid art!
 

a review

edited - The diptychs measure 10" x 16" (8"+8") and I added links to each month, so that you can read about how I did it.

...of the 2010 diptychs that I created monthly and based on the sketches made daily in 2009.
January (how I did it here)February (how I did it here)March (how I did it here)April ( how I did it )May ( how I did it )June ( how I did it )July ( how I did it )August ( how I did it )September ( how I did it )October ( how I did it )November ( how I did it here and here)December ( how I did it )

I stitched by hand and machine, glued, cut, painted, felted, tore, recycled.
I used silk, cotton, synthetic, wool, lace, plastic, paper.
I used acrylic paint, Tsukineko inks, printer ink, Pebeo paint, Pigma pens.
I used fabrics, food netting, packaging material, buttons, paper, shopping bags.
I had fun and experimented.

Tune in to find out what journaling plans I have for 2011!

something different

Today was a lovely day.
I thought the day would be all about my kids (no school) as we started off with a friend being dropped off for a playday, and then headed to the Veteran's day ceremony where my daughters teacher was honored. Then we went to the Katonah Museum of Art for a kids art project day. Little did I know the day turned out to be artistic for me too!
The museum has a map exhibit up now, so all the kids crafts are map related. My kids chose to make masks with their maps. The mask base was provided and they started to cut up the map pieces. As they cut them, they glued them to the mask base. Here are two near completion. Apparently they had a need for red lips! LOLHere's one being diligently worked on. The girls were so preoccupied with their mask making, refusing any help from me, that I decided to play too... I had no idea what to do, but luckily my sketchbook was in my purse, so I started to glue random map pieces around the edges of a two page spread. I knew something would strike me soon, and that's when I noticed the star-like shapes around each mapped city. I started cutting them out and gluing them on my page. When I had enough, I dug into the colored pencil stash and colored in the open areas. I. Had. A. Blast! So did my three cohorts.

what's been going on...

Been a while since I posted.. things have been happening around here though. First - my irises are happily blooming. This morning I had a lovely conversation with one of our few resident chipmunks, she wouldn't tell me her name though.. I've been working on my doodle journal inspired by my own presentation on the subject last week. The presentation, by the way, went fairly well, people seemed to have enjoyed it despite my nervousness and talking too fast. Hopefully I have inspired a few of them to start doodling... There is also a bit of stitching going on in my studio. Not enough to share yet.

And...have you noticed the different look of this blog today? That's because I wanted it to match my website. Tah dah!! My website is done! It's been done for a few days now, but I have been tweaking and tweaking...and I finally realized that I could keep tweaking for an awfully long time. So swing on over and take a look!

creative everyday.. a recap..

So that plan of posting everyday during November? Boy can a holiday weekend wreck that.... Although I must admit to have wrecked it even earlier than that..

Well, yes, a recap! It was good to be more attentive to being creative everyday, especially at this point in the year where my daily journaling as sort taken a backseat d
ue my familiarity with it. I have actually been working on my journal sketches daily this month, unlike October when I frequently made up for several days at once. I went back to watercolors in order to keep the glue of my temporarily manicured fingernails. Of course I still have today's sketch to do, but that's OK, I still have quite a few hours in the day to squeeze that in!Ever since my previous post on my friends wedding in Central Park (when I neglected to take a picture of the bride's totally fabulous shoes!!) the days have been a whirlwind of family and friends and comings and goings. Just as a Thanksgiving weekend should be, right? We had my niece's Christening on Thanksgiving day. What a precious little being she is! My friend Katya painted an icon of her saint that I neglected to photograph, sorry. My parents were here, are still here, for a long weekend, so there was time to be spent with Babushka and Dedushka for my girls. And Sunday we managed to see my niece/Goddaughter again for her first communion, yes we do things a bit differently in Russian Orthodoxy. And despite all that I have finished off a 3D little art project too. That's the blue detail you see above. I started working on a tutorial that I'll have to keep secret for just a bit longer. And from now till the end of January I must concentrate on the Russian School Christmas play costumes. The play isn't till the 24th of January, which is why it keeps going on my artistic back burner...

lovely light

The light was beautiful at dusk in Central Park yesterday... Wish my photos were a bit more artsy. But most of all I wish my friends a lifetime of happiness!