Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Happy Birthday Holly

My youngest daughter Holly was born on Christmas morning, hence the name Holly. She was born at 11:23 a.m. on December 25th but has always disliked her birthday because hey, it sucks being born on such a big holiday. I mean you can't have a birthday party on Christmas Day, who would come?

Years ago John and I decided to move her birthday to November 25th. If for nothing else at least she would be able to have a party with friends and it could kind of be her own day. Still, relatives and friends get confused and sometimes forget her birthday all together which I know bothers her even though she doesn't say much about it.

So on Christmas morning every year John and I always put a little something away for her wrapped in birthday paper. We all sing "Happy Birthday" and take some time to celebrate that beautiful baby we brought home from the hospital fifteen years ago.


Friday, December 19, 2008

Just A Bunch of Stuff None of Which You'll Probably Find Interesting

I've been a bad, bad blogger and have not kept up with my so called blogging code which is to post at least every other day. But I'm not making any apologies today I'll just blame it on the busyness of the season.
I met with Ellen who owns the Ridge West Gallery yesterday and things went very well. She is going to schedule a show with me in 2009 and would like to represent my work at the gallery. It's a smaller gallery but I was impressed with the artists whose work she currently represents and her desire to really work with and for her artists. She has a good spirit!
Being as obsessed as I am about movies I'd be remiss not mention a few I'm looking forward to seeing...........
Out on dvd The Visitor with Richard Jenkins. I was a big "Six Feet Under" fanatic and if you were too you'll remember him as Nate and David's father. As far as I'm concerned there is nothing that will ever hold a candle to that show........Alan Ball is a genius.
I'm not a huge fan of Brad Pitt's but have heard great things about The Curious Case of Benjamin Button which opens on Christmas Day. A story that tells of a man living his life backwards from old to young. Interesting premise.
I also can't wait to see Slumdog Millionaire.
Last one.........for major sap factor but an all around great movie you have to watch
Love Actually. Other than It's A Wonderful Life this is my favourite holiday film. Listen to Hugh Grant's narrative at the beginning as it is priceless. Snuggle up with someone, make some popcorn and sip some egg nog (with or without rum). You'll love it
I was going to post a few photos of the oils and I've been working on the past week but the pictures sucked.... everything from the lighting to the glare from the piece. I'll try on a better day to take some new ones. I'm taking a very short break from paint and thread (maybe a week) and have delved head first into working in oils. I had a few wood panels laying around and thought what the hell, hoping it would kick start my creativity which believe me needs some kick starting.
Have a great weekend..............

Monday, December 15, 2008

Living In Paradise ..... Sappy Post Ahead

For the last few years John and I have hosted what we like to call "The Christmas Tree Hunt". It began quite simply with just a few friends and us heading out to our local tree farm to cut down a tree, drink some apple cider and enjoy time with people whose company we enjoy. Flash forward a few years and our numbers have mushroomed to about 25 friends and family. So early Saturday morning we all met at our place had some coffee and muffins and headed out to look for a Christmas Tree.

We decided on Gillespie's because of the horse drawn, I would like to say sleigh but it's actually a wagon... hey, you can't have everything. It was quite a cool day and the wind was a bit brisk but we were as they say, on a mission. The minute we got off the wagon I think the mission changed from finding the perfect Christmas tree to cutting something down quickly because it was too damn to stand out there looking for something that even resembled "perfect". We decided on a spruce which looked good until John began cutting it down. It wasn't until then the girls noticed the big hole near the back.........oh well, put it toward the wall is what I say....no one will see it there. The girls suggested lots of tinsel might do the trick. On the way back the crazy guy who was driving the tractor with a wagon on the back took us on quite the ride. Branches in the face, ducking the bottoms of trees and almost tipping over........ my three year old nephew enjoyed it immensely.

Once we got back to our house I put on the chilli and set out the food and smiled watching all of our friends reaquaint with each other and new friends meet old ones. We had kids from as young as 3 months to 53 years (yeah, I wasn't the oldest) Here comes the sappy part.............. I never fail to realize how lucky I am to live where I live and to have the friends I have. Each and everyone of them brings something wonderful to not only this day but everyday since I have known them. To stand back and watch them enjoy themselves was the gift.

Thank you

Rob, Kelly, Danielle, Holly

Charlie, Joan & Anne

Anders, Vivian & Luke

Jason & Jake

Les & Victoria

Gregor, Carla, Pico & Fiona

Andy, Laurie & Ben

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Today I thought I'd share with you my all time favourite photo.

My youngest daughter who happens to be quite the budding photographer snapped this picture of my oldest and John walking along the beach in Cuba a few years back. I've decided to have it framed and give it to him for Christmas this year. There is something about moments like this, that when perfectly captured, speak to you. That's what this picture does for me. I love the way my oldest daughter has positioned herself as she walks along the beach so full of confidence and wonder. The shadows their bodies create seem to be extensions of their spirits.

Art in all it's beautiful forms never ceases to amaze me and to do what all good art should......make me feel something.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

No Excuses and No Boots

So I have absolutely no excuses for why I haven't blogged this week. Oh, I could make up a whole bunch of stuff as to the exciting things I've been taking on but then that would be just a lie. Yeah, I've been working in the studio and a few pieces have been completed but mostly I can't really say what I've been doing. What it all boils down to is that I've had a totally unproductive week and been a lazy slug.

But all was not lost as yesterday I took the girls to the dreaded mall as they had both saved up to buy dresses for a school dance on Friday night. As we were making our way through what seemed like an unbelievable amount of people for recession filled times, my oldest looked down at my feet and said, in a very serious tone that I really needed new boots as mine were embarassingly ugly. She went to tell me how it didn't matter to her (lying) but "wouldn't it feel great to wear boots that not only felt good but looked good too? Now granted I've had these Sorells for about ten years but they are comfortable, practical and hey I live in a snow belt. So after some hemming and hawing I allowed them to drag me into a shoe store and I spent a half hour hopelessly trying on Uggs, Bear Paws and a whole slew of other boot names I didn't know. The girls looked utterly happy trying to spruce me so I just kept trying on everything they brought me. No only could I not afford Uggs but I didn't necessarily like them either as they made my feet look like they belonged to Yeti. So in the end no boots were bought that day so I guess I'll continue wearing my "embarrassingly ugly" ones and my children will have to hang their heads in shame.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

I Need A T-Shirt That Says "I Survived My Teenager's Party"

My oldest daughter who just turned sixteen in September approached John and I a few weeks ago about throwing a Christmas party for fifteen of her friends. John and I looked at each other, I remember our eyebrows being furrowed and saying "We'll think about it." We weren't all that concerned about how she'd survive it but how we would. Fifteen teenagers in the house?

So after some initial ground rules which we all agreed on, one of which was no one sneaking in any alcohol, the party was a go. John told her that if we caught anyone drinking we would be forced to confiscate it, take it upstairs and drink it ourselves. We both laughed thinking it was funny......she did not and gave us what I refer to as the "teenager look". So Friday morning before school I was presented with a long and somewhat unhealthy grocery list. Things like pop, potato chips, cheezies, candy canes and pizza. I suggested a veggie platter........again the look.
After school she went downstairs to create a much more festive atmosphere or so she said. Out came the boxes of Christmas decorations and before you could say "Rudolph" the room was decked out and I mean decked out. It rather looked like there was an explosion in Whoville. I suggested "less is more".

We asked her what they'd be doing at this "party" while we were upstairs. She said, "you know, playing DDR ( Dance Dance Revolution, see here) , talking, maybe Twister. John wasn't too pleased with the Twister part as there were going to be boys and he said he remembered being one. Then she said with a horrified look on her face, "your not going to keep coming down and spying on us are you?". With that we asked her if she would like us to come downstairs and "bust a move" to Madonna just so her friends would have an idea what good dancing was. She stood perfectly still and said, "if that seriously happened I would be scarred for life and please never say "bust a move"again". I forgot how much drama was involved in being a teenager.

Everyone began arriving around 6pm. Most of them I know and they are great kids. Our house has and will continue to be an open to door to them. They have always been very respectful, kind and relatively up front........well, as far as teenagers go. So kids came through and stopped to talk while I made pizzas (yes, they were frozen) and chocolate chip cookies (they were from scratch) before moving on downstairs.

Simba our cat was not in a good mood this evening as his peaceful lifestyle had been disturbed and he was mighty pissed off. So while I was taking the third pizza out of the oven he swiped at my leg to show me his displeasure. So to show him mine I put him outside. Five minutes later I sat down to eat, looked out the backdoor and there he was chowing down on a mouse. He looked at me, dropped it and cocked his head as if to say "So sorry I've been in a pissy mood attacking your leg and all but look I brought you a make up present".

By 11pm John and I were fading fast. I mean if it had of been a Saturday night we could have at least kept it together until 11:30 but at this point it was only the music filtering up from downstairs that was keeping us awake. Around 11:35 it all started breaking up as parents began arriving to pick up their kids.

When I finally locked the door for the night, I thought it ended up being a pretty successful party. Nothing got broken, all of the ground rules remained intact (that I know of), John didn't have to pull out any of his fancy karate moves with any of the boys and I didn't have to scar my daughter for life by dancing to Madonna in front of her friends. Yeah, I'd say pretty successful.

Friday, November 28, 2008

A Fruitful Darkness

A Fruitful Darkness
Original Work in Paint, Thread, Wool & Silk
Double Matted 8"x10"

I finished the above piece this morning but it won't be available for sale until I take it to my framers which I'm hoping to do today. I played around a lot with the sky colour and ended up wanting to take it in a much more abstract direction. My original sketch seemed to indicate a much more intimate and silent woods and a blue sky just wouldn't have cut it. It almost seems as if you would be forced to walk very quietly if you were there so as not to disturb the rhythm of the forest and that appeals to me.

Janet emailed me last week asking if I would photo the back of my work just so she could get a better idea of the threadwork. So here it is..........I always think the back is quite interesting on it's own.

I think I'll do the Images Studio Tour this fall as well as perhaps Art in Park in Bracebridge. I haven't given it that much thought but I guess I should. Both are good well established shows and since I've been too lazy to seriously persue any gallery representation it may be a good idea.

Oh, and surprise surprise, I also cleaned by studio yesterday. When John walked in this morning to iron his shirt he almost fell over in shock. He uses the ironing board in my studio every morning and it's usually piled high with books, artwork, threads but today......voila.......nice and neat except for under my work table but just don't look there or if you do pretend you haven't.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving to all my American readers......................

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

The Fine Art Department & An Exciting Weekend

Early Morning
Work in Paint & Thread
Available at the Silverbridge Gallery
Double Matted & Framed

Well what a difference a weekend makes!

Our little Art Appreciation Day in the Village on Saturday ended up far exceeding any expectations I may of had. It was this tiny little show with only ten artists and our first year to boot but wow, did we have people through and yeah.....they were buying. I could have kicked myself for not having more of my original 8"x10" double matted pieces as they sold unbelievably well. They were all reasonably priced anywhere between $75.00 to $150.00. By the end of the day I only had two left which means I need to get my butt in gear today and spend some serious time in the studio. Speaking of affordable art, read artist Lisa Call's latest post Affordable Art - Defining My Own Career. She says everything I've been thinking for the past while but could not put into words.

At the show I was also approached by the owner of Ridge West Gallery which is fairly new. She wants to represent my work as well as do a show with me new year. I'm going to meet with her within the next little while and take a look at the space. I also met two new friends Marc & Brian who are fairly new to the village and who own the beautiful Verandah's B&B. They are interested in purchasing a piece from me once all their renos are completed. Really great guys who also happen to be extraordinary chefs. If your ever in the area it would be the place to stay.

Another new venture I'm totally excited about is Tracy Helgeson's new blog The Fine Art Department. Tracy is not only an amazing artist in her own right but also a great supporter of other artist's work as this I can testify to from first hand experience. She is a remarkably kind and generous person. This new blog will be dedicated to showcasing various artist's work plus a link to where you can purchase their art. Check it out and bookmark it if you would like. I have a feeling it is going to be a big success.

Guess I've rambled on enough for one post and I do need to get into the studio. I've got my eye on a couple new galleries that I would like to approach. Recession or no recession everyone loves art.
Have a good one.......................

Thursday, November 20, 2008


Work in Thread

I came across this piece yesterday while I was trying for the umpteenth time to clean up my studio. I had put it in one of my desk drawers and simply forgot about it. It was one of the demo pieces we did at the Carol Shinn class I took last summer. I liked it when I completed it but having had some time away from it I must now say that I love it. You can't really appreciate the texture of this unless you see it in person. Although it only measures 6"x4" the entire surface is covered in layer after layer of thread. Time consuming but well worth the effort.

On the movie front, I watched one of the most beautiful films I have ever seen a of couple nights ago. If you have the chance to see it.............do. When it is over I promise it will stay with you. Away From Her was directed by Sarah Polley and tells the story with a woman, her husband of 45 years and her onset of Alzheimer's Disease. To me it was a film that chronicles the persistence of love.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

My New Love

In August my friend Judy and I were back to school shopping with our kids at the dreaded mall. When we got tired of following them around she took me into Timothy's and bought me my first chai latte.........I've been hooked ever since. So imagine my surprise when I came across Tazo's Chai Latte at my local grocery store. I've been buying it on a regular basis although it is a bit pricey at $6.89 a pop but it does last me for an entire week. Oh, look at me justifying my newest addiction.

John even bought me a hand held frother for my birthday a few weeks ago just so I could make it appear more authentic.

I do have a few rules about my new guility pleasure though and they are as follows.........

I never have one in the morning. It is far too hectic here and I would be drinking it without actually enjoying it so what would be the point.

I only have one a day which continues to make it a special treat.

I almost always have it at 3:00 p.m. while I'm watching General Hospital which is probably something else you didn't know about me. I've been tuning in since I was about ten years old as it was one of my mom's favs. And although it is always quite predictable I still enjoy 3:00pm when I take a break, check out what's happening in Port Charles and sip a chai latte with froth.

On a totally different subject..........we've gotten our fair share of snow. Snapped this photo yesterday.

Thursday, November 13, 2008


Work in Paint, Wool, Silk & Thread

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Art Appreciation Day in The Village

City Streets
Work in Paint & Thread

Lately I've been working on a local event which will take place in the village on November 22nd from 11 to 5pm. We are calling it "Art Appreciation Day".

Last summer the President of our Community Association approached me with an idea in which we would celebrate the overwhelming amount of talent in this area as well as make a bit of money for the community association. Since I agreed this was a great idea I was put in charge. This is a scary thought because I am not what you would call organized. I think the intention is always there but the end result never quite matches up. This morning I was trying to find an email address for one of the artists which I had scribbled on a piece of paper but then I have about 75 pieces of paper here on the computer desk. Haven't found it yet but I did find a chocolate bar left over from Hallowe'en which was still quite tasty.

Back in the studio I do have two pieces I'm currently working on. Dwellings is a piece I'm extremely happy with. When I first started working on it there were a few times when I thought I might give it up as I just didn't feel it was coming together properly. In hindsight I'm so glad I didn't because I really love it. That seems to happen with much of my work. The second piece I haven't named yet but it is a landscape with a hell of a lot of trees. Believe me all that thread work is time consuming. I'll post when they are completed.

So if you happen to be around our tiny village on November 22nd and are looking for original art for your home, we'll be there.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

And today the world smiles as one

Monday, November 3, 2008


Days Like These
Work in Paint, Thread, Wool & Silk

So yesterday was my 48th year on this planet. Yup, another birthday has come and gone. For as long as I can remember I've always spend some part of the day reflecting on where exactly I am in my life. This year I made a conscious decision to not do that. Instead I chose to just "be". Sounds easier than it is but I really wanted to spend an entire day just moving through it and living moment to moment.........appreciating how very lucky I am. I wanted to enjoy the simple things that often get neglected in everyday life.

John and I spent the morning getting the backyard ready for winter. Putting away outdoor furniture, dumping dead plants that I forgot to bring in before the frost came and raking some stray leaves. Kissed the girls "goodbye" as they left for a school conference which will last for a few days.......hugged them just a little bit tighter than usual. Spent a small amount of time in the studio finishing up "Days Like These". Did a bit of yoga. My friends Kelly and Joan came over and we shared a bit of wine and a lot of laughs....simple things.

All my friends on Facebook left "birthday greetings" and I received phone calls from close friends and friends who live further away. I have been thoroughly gifted in my life with wonderful, thoughtful, kind friends. At times I don't know where I would be without them. John made dinner again last night....delicious. Afterward we watched an old movie and wondered how the girls were doing..........simple things..........just simple things

Thursday, October 30, 2008


Work in Acrylic Paint, Photo Transfer, Wool, Silk and Thread

Yesterday turned out better than I had originally thought it would. By lunch time I was back in the studio finishing up "Whispered".

A few years ago we were in Cuba and I happened to snap this picture of my daughter on the beach. I have always loved this photo mostly because it was so natural and I felt it really captured her essence perfectly. She is such a free spirit and has this unique ability to not only look on the bright side of life but to also just flow through it. Don't know where she got that from........most have skipped a generation. Anyway, instead of painting her I decided I really wanted to just the photo just as it was. After some research on how to transfer my photo onto cotton/canvas I ended up working with a transparency and some acrylic medium. I loved the result as the photo isn't perfect and in places it looks a touch worn which appeals to me. I decided to only use her image and paint the areas around her rather than use the photo of sand and water. I then layered my wools and silks in every rich blue and green I could find and voila................

Here's a few closeups

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Brighter Days Ahead

First off I would like to thank everyone who commented and sent me emails regarding my being "sick". It was very kind and much appreciated. Today is the first day I've actually felt like posting to the blog so I figured I should strike while the iron is hot. Regarding what the hell was wrong with me anyway.........here is the condensed version for all who have asked.

Last week I wasn't feeling all that great. I thought I had a bladder infection. I had one about twelve years ago so I knew what it felt like.........painful. Went to the doctors and they told me my test was negative and that I was fine. Well, excuse me but I've lived with this body for 48 years (this Sundayis my B'day) and I know when something just isn't right. Besides I consider myself a bit of a hypocondriac and being that, know the symptoms to almost every illness know to womankind. So I went home and by the next day I had this excrutiating pain on my left side that started moving up my back. Another visit to the doctors and low and behold this test was positive and the infection had now spread up into my left kidney. So the last week I've been more or less in bed taking my antibiotics and Tylenol 3's.

On the bright side, because we always know there is a bright side, I got to catch up on some movies that I had taped but hadn't had time to watch like Blow with Johnny Depp. I love anything Johnny Depp has been in as he's amazing. In the Valley of Elah with Tommy Lee Jones is an exceptional film and is well worth watching. Both highly recommended. I've also started reading Patricia Bosworth's bio of Diane Arbus.

Today I do have things to do and will take it slow because I can't lay around forever feeling crappy. Our friends Bob and Marilyn head back to Africa in January and I must get some clothes, shoes, etc. together for them to take back with them. The need is so great in that part of the world that if I can do anything at all to help I will. Everyone in the village I live in has been enormously generous and I know we are all proud of the work Bob and Marilyn are doing in Africa. You can read more about their work at Livingstone Performing Arts Foundation .

Well, life does move on and today I'm feeling the need to get back on. Who knows I may even step into the studio. Ok, maybe tomorrow...............

Thursday, October 23, 2008

No posts today as I'm sick. Hope to be back at it on Monday.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow....oh no!

The view from my bedroom window this a.m. You'll notice I took it from inside the house as it was too damn cold to go out. So not ready for snow!

Friday, October 17, 2008

Diane Arbus

Forgive my lack of posts lately but to be quite honest with you I've had absolutely nothing to say. Last week I was reading one of Alyson Stanfield's posts on her blog ArtBiz in which she was discussing how to write a better blog post. She was saying in her experience people read a blog for three things, to be informed, to be entertained and to inspire. Lately I haven't felt I could do any of those things so I've been just keeping mum.

Last night I was surfing through the channels looking for a movie to watch and came across "Fur" with Nicole Kidman and Robert Downey Jr. (I love him). I read the info on it and because it was about the great American photographer Diane Arbus, I decided to give it a go. Diane Arbus was one of the most influencial artists of all time and known for her strange and at times disturbing images. Many of of photographic portraits were of people living on the fringe of society.........drawfs, giants, transvestites etc. etc.

Now this movie wasn't the bio pic I had originally thought it would be as it was more of a fairytale, bio, period piece and love story all rolled into one. There were a couple of moments during the film when I didn't know if I was going to continue to watch. Really bizarre in places but still interesting enough to keep me there. Afterward I read some of the reviews and found they weren't all that kind to either Nicole's portrayal of Diane or the film. I have to admit though that I liked it and I liked it well enough to find out a bit more about Diane Arbus and her life. Here's a clip from You Tube about the making of the film.

Hope your well.........have a great weekend

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Up Close & Personal

The Path
Work in Paint & Thread

A few days ago someone I consider to be a good friend and whose judgement I value, suggested that I take a few good closeup shots of my work. She thought it would be helpful for people to really see my stitches up close which would then give them a better understanding of how my art comes together and what it takes to make that happen. She's right of course (thanks Tracy)which then had me helplessly trying to figure out how to take a better photo when I'm much more of a "point and shoot" kinda girl.

Lighting is a key issue in photograpy or so I've heard. The lighting in my bedroom is generally the best especially between 10:00a.m. to noon so I decided to start in there. Not direct sunlight but still nice and bright. So I set up my easel and my artwork and got down to it. The first little while things were rather frustrating but after a bit of time had passed my daughter walked in and clued me into the macro button which is meant to be used for closeups. Duh? Why I didn't read the damn manual when I bought the thing is beyond me. For a split second I considered going to find it but then decided I probably wouldn't undertstand it anyway. Best to take instruction from my fourteen year old who surprisingly enough seems to be smarter than me. So with the clock ticking and more time passing I think I got a few pretty good shots........for a beginner of course. I am and continue to be a work in progress.
So here is a closeup of the piece I posted entitled "The Path". I think it gives you a better understanding of how tiny the stitches are and how many of them it takes to complete a very small area.

Here's the piece Harvest Sky and below are two closeup shots. The ground cover is completed in both wool and silk which gives it a very textured look.

When I did the Purple Hills Tour last weekend I can't tell you how many people thought my work was a painting. It's not until you get up close that you realize the combination of paint and thread. I find the two mediums together quite exciting as texture is what I continue to explore in all of my work. The way in which the two fuse together keeps me in the studio day after day searching for new ways in which to play and to create. My boo hooing days are over and I'm back at work.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

And The Winner Is..............

Our Vanna White of the Moment

And The Winner Is.............Can you hear the drumroll?

Congratulations Jean, email me at melodymadden@rogers.com with your address.
Tune in tomorrow for some upclose and personal photos

Friday, October 3, 2008

Who Doesn't Love Free Art?

Direction Unknown
Work in Paint, Thread, Wool & Silk

As promised today I'm posting the piece that will be randomly drawn for on Monday night. Unfortunately the frame doesn't come with the artwork but it will be double matted and ready to be put into an 8"x10" frame. So what are the rules? All you have to do is leave me a comment on this post by 6:00 p.m. Monday night. Simple huh? Then I'll put each person's name on a piece of paper, fold it up and drop it into a bowl. My daughter will randomly pick the winner who will be announced here on Tuesday morning.
Have yourself a brilliant weekend !

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Give Away Cause I'm Just Feelin So Damn Grateful Today

So after what was a low point yesterday I am now back in the studio. I was at the Silverbridge Gallery this a.m. to drop off some new work. They love my art, are very supportive and actually move quite a bit of it. Michelle the owner was telling me things are quite slow right now due to the economy and the only works that are moving are pieces priced under $150.00. Let's hope that changes soon.
Thanks to all who commented and emailed regarding my "little" meltdown yesterday. All of your kind words were so very appreciated. In that regard and just cause I'm feeling downright grateful today..........I'm going to have a little give away. That's right........something for free. Tomorrow I'm going to post a piece that will be up for grabs. All you have to do is leave a comment and if your name is drawn (my daughter will do the drawing, I'll do the drumroll) you win! I pay for shipping and handling too. You can't ask for more than that. Thanks for the inspiration Ellen.
Check in tomorrow with all the extra details.

There Were No Balloons or Cake at This Party (ok there was cake)

So yesterday when I was in my studio storing my art away I decided to have a little party for one.........a pity party. You know the "poor me" kind. Where you neglect to look at all the great things you have in your life and just concentrate on the crappy ones. The rain outside didn't help much as it has been a constant the last six days. So I'm organizing my art on shelves and thinking "why aren't I selling more?", why am I not the famous artist I think I am in my own mind?". Well all that pathetic whining does get tiresome after awhile so after getting some great advice and general cheering up from my "amazing" blog friend artists, I went and made some homemade chicken soup(really good) and then ate a big piece of banana cake (that wasn't so good, at least for the waistline).

I'm smart enough to realize the career path I've taken is not an easy one. Maybe I should have been a psychologist. I had seriously thought of that at one time but ruled it out in the middle of my Psych 101 class after I had drawn throughout my entire notebook as well as over some of my notes. Tracy said to me yesterday "Maybe you should just stop making art". I know what she was trying to do and I thank her for it. It made take a good hard, long look at what it would mean to "stop making art" and to realize that would not be a possibility. I'm driven to get into that studio everyday not because I think I'm going to get rich but because it is such an integral part of who I am. So...............I pick myself, dust myself off and get back at it. Then I started feeling really guilty about being so self absorbed when there are so many other tragic things going on in the world. I really am so very blessed. My life is a good one, a really good one and I'm grateful.

I've got this great guy who loves me (ok I know this is a line straight out of Jerry Maguire but it's still one of my fav movies. Long before Tom was jumping on couches and married "Free Me" Kate.) I've got great kids (granted they think I'm a little weird but hey, they are teenagers what do they know...in 20 years they'll think I'm cool but I won't hold my breath). I live in an "arts" supporting community and I do get to work in my studio every day.

Sometimes you just have to venture into the dark side for a short period of time to realize how bright everything truly is. May sound corny but it's true.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Monday, September 29, 2008

End Of The Tour and Dinner With Friends

Well the tour is over and I have to say I was rather disappointed. In two days I sold two small pieces which isn't much. Perhaps I set my expectations too high, maybe it was the weather (it rained all day Saturday and was cool and cloudy on Sunday), maybe it's the economy, etc. etc. I received wonderful feedback which is always appreciated but I only really made enough to cover my cost to get into the show and a bit extra. There were many people walking around but just not enough that were buying.

It was great to see David though and to look at not only his new home in Creemore but his amazing new work. If you click onto his site be sure to check out Enigma. I think it is his masterpiece. Peter Taylor also guested with us and his paintings are just beautiful. He has a solo show coming up at The Level Gallery in Collingwood in October.

A few friends made the drive up to check out the show and we all headed out to dinner afterwards. I did have a Creemore Beer as I think it's a sin to visit Creemore and not so so, or so I told myself. Thanks to Anna, Joe, Victoria and Les for being there.
P.S......Thanks to Nancy from Orangeville who came by to say "hi". She is a reader of this blog so I appreciate her coming out with her "little guys".

Friday, September 26, 2008

Purple Hills Studio Tour

Rough Waters
Work in Paint, Thread, Wool & Silk

Tomorrow the Purple Hills Studio Tour begins at 10:00 a.m. sharp. If your anywhere near please come by and say hello.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Off To Creemore

The Wait
Work in Paint, Thread, Silk & Wool

The above example is how I sell all of my small pieces. They head to the framers and are double matted and ready for an 8"x10" frame. I prefer double matting than single as is gives a much more dimensional feel to the work which you can't really see here. I've been doing amazingly well with these small pieces as they are such a reasonable price...anywhere from $75.00 to $150.00. Pretty fair considering they are not prints but original art. Great for anyone who finds the larger pieces out of their price range as well as people who have just started collecting or just about anyone. Wish I could find a way to photo my work in which you would get a better feeling for the texture of it and the shimmer of the silks as they are interwoven with the wools. Oh well, I guess your just going to have to take my word for it unless you decide to head out to Creemore this weekend for the tour. Would love to see you!
Got to run........I'm off to Creemore to set up!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

News From The Sick Bed

Common Ground
Work in Paint, Thread, Wool & Silk

So it seems all my mantra saying, positive attitude making and down right cheerfulness has done nothing to ward off this crappy cold virus I seem to have inhereited from my kids. Woke up this morning with a pile of things to be done and a sore throat or more accurately, a throat which feels as if someone is stabbing me with a thousand sewing needles. My in laws came back yesterday from Toronto to spend the night before they headed home today and they are both sick. I guess it would have been a miracle if I had come out of this unscathed. My youngest is home today from school so I'm trying to take care of her while I alternative between guzzling a bottle of ecchinchea tincture and drinking some Immune Boosting Tea that my mother in law got at The Herbal Clinic and Dispensary in Toronto. Great place to visit if you live in the area as it feels like something right out of Harry Potter.

The piece I'm posting today I know I've posted before. I changed the name from Copper Road to Common Ground which I feel suits it best. It looks simply gorgeous in person.......unfortunately a jpeg just can't do it justice which is common with all artists posting work via the web.
Hope your all healthy and happy.........see ya

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Direction Unknown

Direction Unknown
Work in Paint, Thread, Silk & Wool

It seems I've been working in the studio almost non stop when I've not been fulfilling my other role as nursemaid. Both of my girls are sick with a doozy of a cold and John is away for the day.....flyfishing. I continue to repeat my mantra of the day which is "I am strong and healthy" you know the whole mind over matter thing. I can't wrap my head around the idea of getting sick right now when I still have so much to do. I haven't even begun to go through my inventory list, make up my placecards, put together some new business cards no to mention I have two more pieces due at the framers on Tuesday. My inlaws are due to arrive tomorrow for the night but I can't complain there. If anything they are unbelievably helpful. They were here on Thursday night on their way to Toronto and my mother in law was making soup while my father in law was washing the windows. You gotta love a family like that!
Happy first day of Fall to All.
Over and out..........

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Undercurrent in Red

Undercurrent in Red
Work in Paint, Thread, Wool & Silk

Still working away in the studio but I always seem to find time to read my three favourite blogs. Of course I do read many more but these are the three I check in with on a daily basis.

Ellen's birding adventure is hilarious and Andrea's clip of Ken Robinson speaking on Creativity and Education is an extremely worthwhile watch. Read Tracy Helgeson's post on ending her limbo........thanks Doug!

Check out Ellen's here and Andrea's here and Tracy's here

Monday, September 15, 2008

Harvest Sky
Work In Paint, Thread, Wool & Silk
Double Matted & Framed

Sunday, September 14, 2008

An Interesting New Resident and A Trip to The Farmer's Market

I noticed the other day when I was taking out the compost that this guy seems to have taken up residence near my backdoor. Now I'm not someone who dislikes or is fearful of spiders, for some reason they just don't seem to incite the "yuck" factor in me..........for me it's always been about snakes. All that slithering just creeps me out. Not sure what variety of spider this is but if anyone knows I'd be interested to find out. He is absolutely fascinating to watch!

I was at the Farmer's Market on Saturday and always find it to be quite the treat. Nothing tastes quite like local produce. All those vendors setting up their tents at 6:00 a.m. rain or shine. You've got to admire that. Here's a few of my favourites.

This is Mark of Quaker Oats Farm. Hands down he makes the "best" stuffed olives I have ever tasted. I love the sundried tomato ones as well as the garlic. But if you have the garlic you have to make sure whom ever your with has them also......... a little goes a long way. My friend Rob favours the blue cheese stuffed but I'm not a big fan of blue cheese.

Tam makes delicious hand rolled spring rolls as well as garden wraps, sticky rice and curried chicken stew.

Tom is our local honey guy. He owns a small business called "Lavendar Hills Honey". Probably one of the kindest as well as happiest people I know.

Jennifer of "Apple of My Pie" is not only a vendor at the market but also a friend. She and her husband Ford run the booth every Saturday morning. If you don't pick up a pie from her by 10:00 a.m. your out of luck.......she sells out pretty quickly. A testament to her wonderful baking.

Hope however you spent your weekend that you made the most of it.