Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Time to Share Some Cards

Time to share a few more cards. These were made during he last trip to the lake and I really didn't get as many finished as I wanted.

This one could go for a wedding or anniversary.

This could be a sympathy or support card.

This -- anytime. If the recipient is a cat lover!

Speaking of cats, you've seen this one before -- different colors and a cheery look!

You've seen this little girl before, too -- she's another of my favorites (from Vintage Workshop).

I don't know what occasion you'd send this one for -- I just loved the image. Worked for me!

Of course, here we go with Halloween! I loved this image and have used it several times.

Next up, Turkey-Lurkey time! This is one of several -- time to think of people far away for whom we are thankful!

And you can't start Christmas any too soon. That time will just fly!

Hoping to get the journals I started that weekend finished so I can post them soon. And I'm working on some fun cooking-oriented bookmarks and a few other things.

I can't make art at home till I finish redoing the art room/office. It's almost done! Looking forward to sharing it with you!

NOTE: BRAND new post on Chopsticks and String. If you like folk music or Christine Lavin or knitting -- you mustlearn about this book. (and you don't have to like all to enjoy it!)

Sunday, September 25, 2011

An Uninvited Guest

No one will ever say I am God's gift to gardening. In fact, just being able to grow some herbs in pots in front of my house is more than I would have expected from myself!

And, I'm not a good weeder, either. So, when I saw this big clump of leaves growing out of my bushes, I muttered a few things about pulling weeds and asked how did they get that tall.

But as I got closer, I realized there were also beautiful flowers on this weed.

And at the end of the flowers, gourds!

I don't know how this gourd plant got in the middle of my bushes. I sure didn't plant it. My garden guru neighbor says it probably came from a bird. Doesn't matter.

Fall is rearing its head and I'm not ready.

But to have an unexpected surprise like this does indeed make it a little more fun!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

The Other Art Show

In my last post, I shared the art we enjoyed at The Spot, where Greg's work is being shown during ArtPrize, a huge Grand Rapids art event.

ArtPrize is a fascinating show, because anyone can get in it. It costs $50 and the only requirement in terms of the art is that the artist must find a venue that will display it. This is easier said than done. Not so hard if you know the Grand Rapids folk; much harder for some who must submit portfolios of their work.

The art at the gallery exhibiting Greg's work is terrific, and you saw in the other post that we really enjoyed ourselves at the reception where Greg told Rick to wear and suit and me to wear a dress. (That, too, is easier said than done!)

As you know, the art was beautiful, interesting, intriguing and certainly well done.

Let me also say it couldn't hold a candle to the ensembles worn by various guests. This is the gallery owner. I thought he did a fine job of elegant tuxedo with arty tie (it had colorful little spikes coming out of it.) This fellow -- Kevin -- knew how to combine formal with flair. But check out the guy in the background. We'll see him again later!

I rather liked these pants. I wouldn't have had the nerve to wear them to an occasion to which the kid told me to wear a dress, but I'd love to wear them when chilling out in front of "Masterpiece Mystery!" on a Sunday night. (Or for that matter, Sunday morning breakfast.) The shirt tail hanging below the wrinkled jacket was an arty touch. In fact, I'd define the outfit as "faux arty."

Here's a better view, with the wrinkled black jacket.

Some came dressed to the nines. I called this one Miss Bridal, Sans Veil. (Like the black jacket and purse?) And what was her friend thinking? You don't wear this dress unless you have zero boobs or hips. It's one of those things that looks great on the dummy at the store and you think "That would be perfect for me." Think again.

(NOTE: Mae sent an email with an thoughtful comment that perhaps I should have been more generous to Ms. Flower Print, saying she reads blogs about overweight women who don't want to be limited in what they can wear. I know what she means, because I'm one of them. And I agree that freeing oneself from preconceived notions about what they should wear is a good thing and worthy of respect. SO, I'll just add that in public I would have steered clear of this dress -- which would look a lot worse on me than her -- but she is fully free to wear what she pleases and not worry about what I think! And, if I had the confidence not to care, I'd probably wear it too. I think the last paragraph of this post sums it up pretty well!)

This one was pretty elegant. A slight train, an odd but interesting top hat fascinator. I'm very fond of fascinators and now I'm wishing I'd had time to whip one up before we went.

I really did like her hat. Very cute with the little flippy things coming out of it. She had some flair.

Same dress, different view. The black single-shoulder on the right was quite sophisticated and classic.

Here's our flower dress girl -- looks better from the back. But the fellow on her right -- they shouldn't have let him out of the house. And why he was wearing shorts on a pretty brisk night is beyond my comprehension. (He did have a cool hat. Inappropriate, though perhaps not -- maybe it was his ArtPrize entry and he's just not at this venue.)

Personally, I think he wanted to compete with the art. It worked. (And he did have very snappy shoes!) The fellow on the right had a traditional suit and interesting artsy hat -- I thought that was appropriate. And the girl in the middle had the body to wear her dress, which was kind of cute. If brief.

And that's a good thing, because you saw a lot more than the dress. Only someone with decent legs could wear those tights.

The woman looking at Greg's display had a striking teal gown and could wear it. That was my favorite, though you can't see it well here.

Now this couple -- they didn't seem to care about the clothes or the art.

Here's a last look at Greg. I suppose it was his artistic side that picked a checked shirt with a patterned tie. I'm still a little traditional for that (I still have emotional problems combining floral patterns with checks in decorating, which is why my house is pretty boring in the upholstery department). But look at that smile -- He looked darned cute to me. And the kid knows how to wear a suit.

In comments from the other post, some of you asked what Rick and I wore. Compared to the rest of the crowd we were either under dressed, overdressed, way too conservative or way too boring. This is us in the same clothes at Rick's cousins wedding two years ago. (Yes, I had on an old outfit. I don't do dresses except under pressure!)

Oh, to have the confidence and arrogance to wear whatever you like, wherever you wanted, no matter what the "dress code" and just not care (or, better still, think you look good). I sure don't have that confidence of style, and I wish I did. Then I would have tied a scarf around my head like Lucy used to wear when cleaning the house in the old "I Love Lucy" shows, capris -- or fishnets or flip flops, REALLY big earrings (that didn't match), stuck art rhinestones on my cheek as a beauty mark and punked my hair. And a boa.

I would have fit right in.

NOTE: Now at Chopsticks and String: "We Might As Well Win," by Johann Bruyneel and Bill Strickland -- it's about a lot more than the Tour de France!

Monday, September 19, 2011

Show Time for Greg and Dustin!

Michigan's ArtPrize has become quite the art event, attracting artists from all over the country who compete for cash prizes, voted upon by the people.

Greg and his friend Dustin Farnsworth, who is now at Arrowmont in Gatlinburg, TN, are participating this year with the Grow Faster entry -- something originally created for their senior project at Kendall College of Art and Design and previously highlighted on the Gypsy HERE.

It is basically a giant ViewMaster and when you look inside you'll find his drawings that relate to war. (When you are young, you play be carrying the flag with your friends; but war finds a soldier presenting the folded flag to the daughter of a dead soldier.) There are about 10 of these comparisons, and when you click the ViewMaster, another set appears.

The s entry is showing at a location called "The Spot" in downtown Grand Rapids. (For those from Michigan who are attending, it's on Pearl Street, between Ionia and Ottawa and right across from a parking ramp. (Hungry folk: Try the Ottawa Tavern, just down the street.) Greg did the drawings and Dustin built the ViewMaster.

The gallery hosted an opening preview for the artists exhibited there, and Rick and I, and our friends Paul and Bonnie Davis, eagerly anticipated an evening art and hors d'oeuvres. (That's Bonnie and Paul below.) Greg said, "Now, wear a suit and a dress." It was fun to get the dress code from the kid!

It was exciting for us to see Greg interact in a rather sophisticated venue, speaking with strangers as though he'd known them his whole life.

And it was also fun to see the other art displayed there. This panel covered a very long wall, a detailed pen-and-ink drawing. (I'm sorry I don't have the artist's names -- none of them had been posted yet.)

This one took a 26' truck to deliver! It depicts the great world disasters of the first six months of this year (Joplin, Tuscaloosa, Japan's earthquake and tsunami) and is in oil, taking the artist two months to create. Personally, I don't see the specific disasters there, just a bunch of troubled people, but then I'm a fairly literal interpreter. The techniques, though were lovely. (His first name was Nick.)

This was my favorite, by Rebecca Green.

Becca went to school with Greg and for my birthday he gave me one of her prints. I think she has potential to be very big as an illustrator. She's very Somerset in terms of her style, which of course I love very much.

This was another favorite. This beautiful Japanese woman just jumped off the canvas.

I also was in love with this pencil drawing of a Chinese temple.

This one appealed to my love affair with cutting out tiny things. Looks like a beautiful tree, right?

Take a closer look -- it's entirely made of words and type! That's too anal retentive even for me, but I loved seeing it!

The exploding floral bouquet in this oil was a little odd, with flowers bursting from the bouquet on fire. But it was captivating and the technique was marvelous.

I loved the colors of this one. You would need a very large house to display it, though! I'm thinking office lobby only!

This was intriguing, too -- wild animals chasing people, while birds swarm above. I wish I had a tight shot of the birds, as they were outstanding.

The show wasn't limited to two-dimensional art. These three teapots were well done and whimsical in sort of a twisted way. (They were accompanied by "brass" knuckles and the gun at the top of this post in the same style.)

This fellow, Cameron, made an amazing bench, for which he was to charge $25,000. It was stunning.

And I loved this sculpture by an artist from Madrid, NM.

But back to Greg. We were so proud to see how people were responding to Dustin's giant ViewMaster with Greg's intricate drawings inside.

So, three cheers for a great evening. Lots of smiles all the way around. Let the voting for ArtPrize begin!

(Now, there was another show at this Gallery, happening at the same time, with equally amazing art to wear! That's the next post!)

NOW at Chopsticks and String: "We Might as Well Win" by Johann Bruyneel and Bill Strickland.

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