Monday, February 25, 2013
Crash glass is great to work with, especially if you love mosaics like I do. I developed a method of gluing together small pieces of irregular glass to form her dress. When I first worked on “Sorrow,” I had not taken any classes in oil painting and therefore, painted her face with acrylic. After I learned the Renaissance Oil method I loved the rich look of the oils so much that one by one, I began all my older paintings and redoing them.
I have a question for my readers. If I started a painting several years before, then reworked it recently, which date should I place on the painting? The date I had on it before the revision or the day that it is revised?
I have changed the date to 2013, even though it was first finished in 2010. I understand many Renaissance artists would hang paintings on the wall, take them down and rework them numerous times before calling them completed. I guess looking up the answer about the date will be another google project for me.
Detail of Glass
Her heart was breaking. Though she tried hard to forget, nothing could erase the pain. After years of unresolved sorrow, An inner voice spoke softly revealing a great truth, which she knew but had Somehow forgotten: “Everything in life comes full circle. What was will be and you shall be whole again.”
Sorrow is, now finished. If you are interested in purchasing her, you can see more views on Etsy and purchase there or contact me by e-mail. She is 12" w x 28" h x 1" deep. I love the way the glass sparkles when the sunlight shines on it.
Monday, February 18, 2013
3 GIVERS OF LIGHT
LIGHT SWITCH COVERS
View on Etsy
I love using my “Givers of Light” light switch covers on all of my light switches. It’s fun to walk into a room, flip on the light and see one of the clay faces gazing back at me. I just finished the three that I was working on before the Christmas rush. Oceana, the Storyteller and the Crone. They are approximate 4” wide x 9” high. They fit directly over your present light switch. Just remove old one and use existing hardware. Be sure to allow for head room because they are about 3” higher than the standard cover. I have priced them very reasonably at just $58.00 you can view them closer on Etsy or purchase directly from me by contacting me by e-mail.
Oceana-View on Etsy
Storyteller View on Etsy
The Crone View on Etsy
Thursday, February 14, 2013
HAM, BEANS AND BARLEY SOUP
THE BEST YOU WILL EVER TASTE!
A friend of mine, Laura of Art From Trails End has a really unique blog which includes arts and crafts, recipes and beautiful Pacific scenery. Recently she posted a picture of herself cooking her award winning chili. Naturally, I asked for the recipe. Laura told me that when she cooks, she basically cooks “in the zone.” I immediately knew what she meant, as I’m sure most of you do. When you are ‘in the zone’ there is nothing you can’t do. It’s as though the creative muse has completely taken over, allowing you to choose exactly the ingredients and the right amount to use. This is true of any medium by the way, whether it be art or music or theater. You concentrate, stay focused and before long, you reach perfection. That is what happened when I created the recipe for my Ham, Beans and Barley Soup. Please forgive me for bragging but I have to say, this is the best soup of this type I have ever tasted. For those of you who don’t know about the way I cook. I'm like a mad scientist in my kitchen. I try different recipes dozens of times til I figure out the way to make them delicious. The results of this soup is no exception.
Sofritto in Italian Means Well Sauteed Vegetables Usually of Carrot, Onion and Celery
It’s always a bit difficult to write a recipe down when cooking this way, as Laura also told me about her chili. I am going to do my best with hopes that all of you will improvise and add your own touches to the recipe. Usually when I make a new recipe, I like to cook it exactly as written and later add my own touch.
As the Soup Starts to Simmer
I promise, you will have rave reviews with this scrumptious, peasant like, comfort soup.
2 T. or a bit more of olive oil and 5 garlic cloves, chopped medium plus 2 more garlic cloves to be squeezed into soup later
4 boxes of the 32 oz chicken broth-your own if available-I like Trader Joe’s brand but others will do.
2 or 3 large smoked ham hocks
About 3 slabs of ham found in packages-about ½” thick or, if you have left over ham that’s even better.
A sofritto: A sofritto is the vegetable beginnings of a lot of Italian dishes. It adds the much needed flavor you need for soups: For this you need 2 or 3 carrots, 3 or 4 stalks of celery and 1 or 2 onions. I use at least a cup of each and sometimes even more than a cup of the onions.
½ jar of already cooked northern beans or cannolini beans or about 3 cups. I prefer the jarred kind and as a matter of fact, it is important that you use the kind in glass jar. If you can’t find the glass jar kind, I guess it will be ok to use canned, although I never have.
3 bay leaves
3 stalks of fresh herb or dried like parsley, majoram.
Salt and pepper
Barley- quick cooking kind-about half a box or 3 cups
l. Make sofritto: Place 2 or more T. of olive oil in large soup pan. Heat a bit before adding garlic. Cook garlic for about a minute. Add carrots, onions and celery and slow cook for about 10 minutes stirring often until vegetables are somewhat soft.
2. Add 3 boxes of 32 oz. chicken broth, ham hocks, herbs including bay leaves, ham that you have cut into about 1 or 2” pieces after removing the rinds if needed. Put lid on leaving small opening. Bring soup to boil and then turn heat down and slow cook for about 2 hours or until all vegetables and ham is cooked. You could also add the ham after the first hour of cooking if you prefer.
3. Remove ham hocks from pot and add back any meat left on them. With a garlic press squeeze 2 cloves of garlic into soup. Spoon in the northern beans with a lot of the liquid in the jar. About 2 cups, maybe more. Simmer for about 15 minutes and then add about half a box of barley or 2 ½ cups. Bring heat up high and once boiling again, put on low heat and cook til barley is soft and cooked. Don’t forget to taste many times along the way. Someone should invent taster spoons for chefs. Maybe they already have? Constantly season to taste.
This makes a large pot of soup that you can eat now and freeze any leftover. Wait til you taste this! I think the combination of beans and barley absolutely make this dish.
The soup goes together very quickly, depending on how fast you can chop vegetables. Also, it is a bonus not to have to soak and cook northern beans. The jarred variety works just perfectly.
As Julia Child would say, “Bon Appetit” Or in Italian it should be “Bon Appetito”
After Soup has Simmered for Over Two Hours
Saturday, February 9, 2013
I’ve always been an admirer of Frida Kahlo and have created a few posts about her in the past. Click here to see. I wrote about the accident she had when she was young and how she had lived with her pain; her art being a constant source of diversion. When I wrote these things, I didn’t have a clue as to the effect pain can have on a person. I thought I could empathize with her because she was an artist like myself and I admired her for working in pain, but, I had never experienced very much pain in my life and really could not have known it’s effect over the long run. Until lately. It’s just my knee but keeps me from moving as quickly as I’m used to. The more chronic pain I experience, the more I admire Frida. A lot of her paintings show her in pain. She even had to attend a major art show held for her, by being carried in on a bed! Frida said “I never painted dreams. I painted my own reality.” She also said I paint myself because it I know myself better than anyone else.” She created 143 paintings and of those 55 are self portraits.
I am lucky, as most artists are, because when I am in pain, I can look to my art to pull me through. Just thinking about a piece in my studio, whether it’s a painting or sculpture, gives me a goal and before long, I am focused on finishing that piece. I believe if you continue to search for answers for your pain, you will relieve it somehow and I also have come to the conclusion that “wisdom is nothing more than healed pain.” Although I can’t take credit for coining that verse, ( I read it on Facebook, author unknown,) I certainly am going to adopt it as my own.
Close-up of Seven Antique Jewels
In honor of Frida, I have created this Renaissance oil and mixed media painting with gems and jewels of every type. I wanted to make her glitzy as she appears in a lot of her pictures. She liked to wear dangly jewelry and flowers in her hair. I have used some very old earrings and some even older pins. (some may be worth a lot more than the painting!) I guess you could always snip off the valuable jewel and add a costume piece in place of it. LOL. She is 8” w x 10” x h. and 1 ½ “ deep for easy hanging. I also created a crackled background. I have priced her at $145. You can check her out at Etsy since I just placed her in my shop or you can also contact me directly at my e-mail
Picture of 1 1/2 frame
Also, I placed a Frida necklace on Etsy for you to look at.
Thanks so much.
Wednesday, February 6, 2013
GRANDMOTHER TREE WALL HANGING
Sold. Thank you Connie!
A friend of mine loves turtles. She volunteers to help breed them in all sorts of interesting places like Grand Cayman. She saves the broken pieces of turtle shell and offered to bring some to me to use in my work. I was thrilled when I saw the beautiful, rustic shells. They are perfect for my series titled “Grandmother Tree.”
Close-up of Turtle Shell and Driftwood
Here is the story that accompanies Grandmother Tree:
The trees are alive! She wandered into the garden early one morning and she heard them speak to one another.. It was a language spoken on another frequency..in another vibrational time frame. They spoke of healing with power and energy and of the relationship between energy and matter. She was drawn to an ancient Chinese Elm and as she leaned her body next to the base, somehow she felt immersed in the tree and felt herself slip into the tree..was one with the tree and knew that she was the tree.....
Close-up of Face
The materials I used were, driftwood, moss, lotus pod, turtle shell , clay and of course, there is always love added to each of my finished pieces.
She is 4” w x 22” tall. Priced at $68.00 If you’d like to purchase her, I have just placed her on Etsy or you can e-mail me.
Thank you so much for viewing.