Friday, October 31, 2008

Patchy and Pal

This just in from my bro', Chris: "Our next door neighbor's kitten has become Patchy's best friend. The kitten jumps the wall and comes over and plays with Patchy for hours every single day. It's really cute. They are genuinely happy to see each other. They look like two little, frolicking, white flames chasing each other around the yard."

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Dirty Little Secret

Women aren't dolls. Women aren't donuts. We're not shadows in anyone's background. On the left, then, are words, represented as falling leaves: the old expectations, the useless stereotypes. On the right, words that are the trunk of truth about women, our depth, our resilience, our roots, our reality. Some would say all those rooted words should be kept a dirty little secret while we externally conform to the old, dead, shrunken list to maintain the comfort zone of others! Hence, the flowering quote in the tree branches. This quote, an extreme favorite of mine, came from Vogue magazine but eesh, blimey, shite! I didn't write down who to attribute it to.

Transparency transfer (at last!) Words from old book. Acrylic paint, graphite pencil, watercolor pencils, oil crayons, walnut ink scorched with heat gun.

My Fever

Magazine image, text from old book, acrylic paint, handpainted paper, die cut sparrows, failed transparency transfer in the background!

Tough As Chestnut

An Audre Lorde quote I've held onto, from O magazine, for a loooOOoong time. Transfer that sorta-kinda worked in the background, a lotus pond. Magazine image/text, rubber stamps, acrylic paint.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Yearning for Autumn, the REAL Thing

All images from Toast catalog.
Flavors, smells, atmospheres, colors, red cheeks of autumn. Sleeves, misty air, chilled hard ground under boots, candlelight. These pictures are a shopping spree for the ambiance of autumn, the way I remember it and feel it inside and WANT it on the exterior.

Peek Inside the Traveling Journal

Yesterday, I took My Lovely Mother to her eye surgery appointment and waited for her. Did this in the lobby. [Editor's Rant: I get these SURGES of disgusted frustration that I can't go anywhere, now, without a stupid television -- i.e. yesterday's doctor's waiting room, McDonalds, Discount Tire even! I don't want to be forcefed from the square altar everywhere I go -- I know how to amuse my own brain!!! No live models around, so drew the woman from the image on the page. I'm sketching for 15 minutes every day. Ok, so some days are better than others - shaddup! It's fun and instructive ALWAYS, so I carry on with it.

Quietly Humming

Vintage postcard scan, various papers and stamped images. Just having fun - I miss my kinfolk! Ideas for crazy postcards from Mary Ann Moss, over at Dispatch from LA ... go LOOK!!! Rubber stamps and bits and pieces and doodads and sparkly paint! For an acquaintance who is dealing with hordes of stress/depression. Veronica had this image on her blog, free for the taking, and I loved it! Ribbon, paper scraps, rubber stamps. Label side - Basic Grey papers, mostly, and some scraps. For my cuz, Kevin - front side. The image is a scan of a vintage postcard. Image from a Trader Joe's grocery flyer; dancing penguin from a Christmas card catalog.

Monday, October 27, 2008


Today, Double BB was offered a job. Not only that, it is the EXACT job he wanted -- it represents a step away from management and into something wherein he is more autonomous, self-regulated -- NOT having to manage the professional lives of others; their sales, their performance, their training.

Thank you to Chase Bank for recognizing skills, experience and work ethic! I'm prepared to love you forever, even switch my account to your institution, provided you treat my Double BB right.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Aloha piece for Tia Rosemary

Sweet Melissa, who was my oldest male child's lady for 4+ years, remains my friend. She reported to me that her Tia Rosemary loves my blog and my creations. Being as I was in need of a project to get me OUT of my journals, I asked about Tia Rosemary's favorite things, so I could make something for her. Melissa and I will present it when we all meet up for coffee, an arrangement we're still working on! The piece turned out so happy-feeling that I decided to use a close-up of a portion of it for my new blog header! I call this piece Aloha. Tia Rosemary loves purple, royal blue and pink, and wants to travel, especially to Hawaii! ['scuse the sorry background, but Aloha is outside dangling from my makeshift clotheslines while the sealer dries.] Upper left corner. Magazine image I love! Floral fabric swatches from Mercedes. Star chipboard shapes, Bella baubles, glitter. Lace 'crown' piece from Mercedes. Hand painted paper punched into flowers to go on her head. Upper left corner. Hand painted flowers, white & black rub-ons, acrylic paint. Lower left corner. Parrot playing card, floral fabric piece, and metro pass from Mercedes. Bella baubles from Miss V. Rub-ons. Lower right corner. Pink fabric square from a wallpaper sample book. Gold lace pieces throughout from Mercedes at Alterado, gift from Madrid! Butterfly from a wallpaper border roll. Rub-ons, and Bella baubles from Miss V. I love this rubber stamp image, here in the center of the white. The 'R' is for Rosemary, naturally. And a little lace and glitter crown!

Love is a Journey

See the blue/gold flowers on the right? Packing tape transfer. See the angel on the top left? Packing tape transfer. Neener. I CAN do a transfer right when it comes to packing tape. Unfortunately, the background is a failed transparency transfer of one of my monastery postcards. DAGNABBITALL ANYWAY!!! So then I was forced to go in a different direction. I like this page, but the one I started out with in my head is still clamoring for realization. sigh. that means more transparency transfer efforts. I have about 10 more prints dangling from the top of my closet wall, out of reach of Zoe's chocolate pawlets.

Note: The French text says 'I wanted to keep the past's atmosphere intact.' This page is more about spirituality than 'love' between a man and woman, or human love.

My Own Paper - The Attempts Go On

Autumn Cape. Acrylic paint. It actually started out as an attempt at a transparency transfer, gone awry, as do ALL my transfer attempts.
Editor's Note: Very soon I'm going to have a magazine-&-book-burning in the middle of my doggone patio, all these transparency techniques that never flippin' work, eesh, blimey, shite! [What do you mean, operator error! Bite your tongue!] The only transfers that work for me are packing tape transfers. I've tried gel medium, I've tried spritzing glossy paper with water, I've tried that Citrus gel goop. pfffft. I'm not saying UNCLE yet, but I'm close.

Meanwhile, if you like this paper, please go ahead and download it and use it. Just trim off the stooopid wire binding edge my scanner refuses to cut off even when I tell it to (grin)! I made it after sitting on my patio at sunset on Thursday and soaking in the way the sky colors are deepening, the very very beginnings of leaf brownings, the hot pink layers of the lower horizon.

Written Journal Backgrounds

Bird images from my love, Ciera. Wall and wrapping paper bits from my long-ago swap with Patty at The Tuscan Rose. [Speaking of The Tuscan Rose, Patty has the new Basic Grey papers -- I'm DYING!!! and a new set of acrylic stamps that are killer. sigh. Gotta wait for Double BB to find a job, yup!] Acrylic paint and a few leftover journaling stickers. I'm seriously trying to thin out my leftovers drawer! Feeling expansive, I guess. Rubber stamps, a strip from a layering experiment, magazine punch outs and text. Ciera picked out the octopus image for me. The rest are bits from my leftover drawer, including the paint - had to put water in the bottles to get the last little paint color out. Sometimes these pages turn out so fun! I tried out a Martha Stewart border stamp on the right edge. Moody, this one. I found the Signal card on the ground and noticed the D. Brown name on it. Magazine images, a piece of reflective tape from work, magazine text, acrylic paint. I love this one -- did ink blot splatters on the opposite page, then pressed this one over the top of it. It feels like much of the art I see when I visit Mexico.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

2nd Grade Photo

My love Ciera, 2nd grade. Never before has Miss Bear been quite so solemn!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Gifts from My Beloved Aunt Judy

My Beloved Aunt Judy and cousin Lisa discovered TWO FULL BASKETS of old cabinets cards in one of the antique stores. My Lovely Mother, Aunt Judy and I cleaned them out -- prices were only between $1 and $4!!! Aunt Judy bought these two for me. There's nothing written on this card, but I've named her Lottie after one of my favorite rubber stamp images.
The back of this has several things written in German, which we are still trying to decipher. Among them, though, is written: "Grandma and Grandpa Volski, their wedding portrait." Exquisite cabinet card!

PLEASE FEEL FREE TO DOWNLOAD THESE SCANS!!! These are just too lovely to keep to myself.

Hands-Down Favorite Kinfolk Photo

And I'm proud to say I'm the shooter of this classic Kodak Moment!! My Lovely Mother and her nephew, Kevin. Mom has always had a special thing with Kevin -- comprised of much sass and pranks and giving of mutual grief, including notes on the message pad by the hotel hallway phone -- this picture just GRABS that magic between them! Everyone wants a copy, so I'm printing those as I write this.

Another phenomenon: My cousin Kevin and my youngest male child, Kevin? We're talking Pete and Repeat -- personalities, voices, expressions, pranks. It's seriously uncanny. If I wasn't looking at my cousin Kevin when he was speaking, I was surprised, because I would listen and expect to turn to my son, Kevin. The two Kevin's sat together at dinner on Saturday night -- all of us were commenting on the parallels, and the two of them hit it off and went off into Kevin World. Amazing.

Monday, October 20th

Monday, we all drove over to My Lovely Mother's and my side of town so the kinfolk could visit our homes. Zoe just LOVED on Aunt Judy - that made me smile and smile. But the magic of having My Beloved Aunt Judy actually IN my studio -- how can I explain that? Her energy, her presence, the love I feel for her -- in my studio. It's here forever now. She looked at everything, took her time, asked me questions. I had several vintage Valentine postcards for her, and a few items of British Royalty I'd saved from the items my buddy Greg has given me -- she hugged and hugged me! Aunt Judy is very into that, and especially into Princess Diana, so giving her some old black & white photos, and a Princess Elizabeth postcard? A HUGE DEAL!! Cousin Kevin tinkering on My Lovely Mother's piano. My cousin Kevin in silhouette. Reminded me of those Michael Jordan Nike t-shirts.
Like I said: Uncle Sonny. Beeline. Recliner. True story. Recliner and Uncle Sonny and Mom's stuffed cat, Leonardo. Press Leonardo's paw and he whispers all sorts of fetching sweet nothings in a killer French accent. Uncle Sonny had a laughing attack and kept pressing the paw! Ms. Lisa. Mom, Aunt Judy, and Lisa. Myron. Myron and Lisa sitting on My Lovely Mother's piano bench.

Lunch at The Cheesecake Factory followed -- despite our warnings, they were unprepared for the portion sizes -- Uncle Sonny asked the waitress if he could order another person to help him eat his meal! After we got back to the hotel, we split up -- My Lovely Mother, My Beloved Aunt Judy and I went to see the movie "The Duchess" (which was so wonderful it deserves a post all to itself); the rest went to see a western, The Appaloosa? I dunno. Something like that.

Then everyone re-collected at the hotel for swimming, and (much later) dinner at The Cracker Barrel. Lots of goodbyes, too, since my brothers and guys wouldn't be at the hotel this morning when everyone left. Aunt Judy and Ciera got along famously -- all of us were excited for the two of them to reconnect (Judy saw Ciera when she was about 2 but not since). Gosh, just sitting around the pool, jabbering, the guys doing cannonballs, Ciera talking my cousin Kevin's ear off ... those moments are THE ONES, aren't they? I promised no shots around the pool, as none of us except Kevin have the swimsuit calendar bods we'd all like to have ... then I forgot my camera when we went to dinner, so this is it on the photos, except ONE more --

The Hands-Down Favorite.

Interruption for Artsy Fartsy Photos

I didn't want to miss time with my kinfolk, wondering off to shoot photos, but I could NOT resist the fountain.