Wednesday, August 17, 2011

blogging is a wintertime thing for me....

No excuses.....I have been swamped all summer. I'm not exaggerating either. Been home maybe ten days in the last 36. Another challenge is I got an ipad. Typing more than a facebook entry can cause my finger tips to go numb. More to follow I promise....

Friday, April 1, 2011

another rustic collage

Here I am again with another sculptural piece. It's Friday and I should be in the shower but I wanted to post quick before I'm off to the mountains.  This weekend I'll be providing a crafting experience to middle aged Mennonite women.  My good friend runs a wonderful woodland hideaway in the mountains near Lincoln City.  Drift Creek Camp is unique place and although a winding drive....I never pass up a chance to visit and see my friend.  And.....she makes wonderful espresso drinks!

This composition includes collaged vintage papers on a old box lid with it's original hardware remaining.  It's complimented with 2 contrasting carved walnut furniture adornments.  The sleek glass door knob is paired with the chippy green door handle base.  These are then mounted on a elevated remnant of a agricultural screen found here on the farm.  Created as a wall hanging.  All these elements contrast in texture and orgin.  Embracing many aspects of life. 

On a another note.  This upcoming July I'm attending a artist workshop "camp" all based around the use of hot wax...."Encaustics".  The camp was created to help all types of artist on how to incorporate encautics into your works of art.  I'm thinking that this piece would of been perfect to encase (the base) in wax.....I'm excited to be the host and student of this amazing combination of artists from around the U.S.  I'm happy to know that it will be held at my very own Western Mennonite School Campus so I don't have to travel far. You'll find info about it here....

Sunday, March 27, 2011

more contemporary

This is my third try....I feel like it still needs something and of course the photo is a bit washed out. I chose a spicy tomato painted trim to compliment the pumpkin shade of Divine Paint. I picked up these tiles (soft yellows and aqua) that are in the center at Habitat.  Some lucky girl had her kitchen back splash done completely in these shiny little gems and they graciously donated the extras.  Very jealous.  I mounted them on a contrasting vintage aluminum roofing piece I found out back of the shop.  I was quite shocked when I actually found what I had envisioned.  It's mounted with 4 vintage wood screws and adorned with a copper starburst.  And for those of you that read yesterdays post.....the black circle is a rubber toilet flush valve that i found new in the original box.  David went with me to Habitat and he was talking to a friend of his who was volunteering.  He was sorting through this box of misc. hardware that had been donated by the Trappist Abbey near Lafayette.  It has these neat bumps and a copper center ring.....a little too cool to use in a toilet.   Well I best finish the other 3 I have started.  I'm still thinking out the possibilities.  I got a vintage cheese box that I painted the interior and it's ready to go.....maybe tomorrow?

another try

This one is my favorite.  I salvaged so many square nails and thought I could never use them all...Now maybe I can. This creation is based in a tiny drawer, collaged with vintage papers and some divine paint.  I picked up some divine paint samples at Goodwill....amazing find.  The center wood piece is from a pipe organ salvaged after a flood.  I wonder if anyone can guess what the center black item is?

Saturday, March 26, 2011

I've been trying something new...

Have you ever been to an art gallery and saw artwork you thought was ridiculous and wondered "what was that guy thinking?"....Well I guess that's the path I'm on. People are strange as to what they like.  I've always preferred collage.  I really dig assemblage and found object type creations .  Using items that would normally be tossed or using things for a different purpose seems to spark something in me.  Some people might not call it art, but it takes thought and time finding the right combination textures is intriguing to me. Here are a few reasons that I started in this new direction....1) I have the need to create...I needed to tap into that or I was going to go crazy.....2) I've acquired a lot of really cool hardware that I haven't found a need for with the furniture creations. 3) it's butt crack cold out side and my shop is not pleasant to work in. 4) I'm re-applying to a art show that I've done in years past and I wanted some new things to expand with.  The show called "Cracked Pots".  I was involved for a number of years but leadership has changed and I lost my connection with the gal who knew me. Reapplying is a drag but it keeps me on my toes and it ensures a high quality show.  I needed the time off.  Prepping for the show took weeks of work.  I overheard my daughter say "Mommy is in her shop again...."  I felt kind bad.  It was the tone of her voice and it sounded like I was in there too much.  That's when I decided to take a summer off.  We focused on having fun and one summer became two and now I'm back.  She's got her cousins to play with now and she's more independent.  Some days during the summer she's gone for hours playing....what a life.  This farm is such a treasure.  I wish I could of grown up here.  I had lots of outside fun though.  We lived in the hills outside Eugene.  Lots of fir trees to climb.  I had poison oak and pitch on me most of my life.   anyways.......I've been gone a bit from here too.  Now I'm back.  Here is a photo of one of my creations.  I'll post one photo a day.  Kinda funky stuff.......but it's fun.

Monday, January 24, 2011

time to start building....with clay

Today is the first day of Second Semester at my school.  This makes me VERY happy.  I love second semester as all my Art Classes convert to Ceramics!  This is hard work but the kids are happy, eager and Spring is around the corner.  I do think that having something 3 dimensional that actually can be gifted and or be funtional is very important in feeling fufilled.  Being creative is one thing, but incorprating that creative vibe into being handy and productive is an additional accomplishment.  There must be some psychological theory with a fancy name in a very large book or on the internet somewhere proving this but it doesn't even matter.  My kids are happy when they can provide for or fufill a need. That might be by making a napkin holder that's a bit wacky.....but it's usefull.  Everyone likes to be useful. 

Sunday, January 23, 2011

impatient just realized the reason I can't stand staining wood is because of the waiting.  It always takes so stinkin' long to watch it dry......even in the sun! My dad likes stain.  He doen't like to cover up the "beautiful wood grain"...but I love color.  Paint is definately where it's at.  I was working on my website this weekend and when the professional (head sister Sheryl) asked for a color scheme. I was giddy!  who knew? I knew.....but it didn't occur to me I could have a scheme.....I just wanted it done!  I think I might be with the stain situation.......hmmm. Did you know you could look up "color schemes for websites" on the internet?  Yes you can....why you ask?  Well it is because you need a special "recipe" for the colors called hex #'s.  I've seen that before in my use of Photoshop, but knew it didn't concern me.  We cruised though a few and I picked one.  Just wanted to move on...  But then I realized I could look at them all......just like paint swatches!  I love paint swatches.  I remember as a kid looking at the brochures with the Glidden paint squares glued all in a row.    The reason I know it was Glidden as that was the paint my father used.  "It's the best......"  The guys down at the Eugene Glidden Paint Store knew him by name.  He was a teacher and a painter during the summer.  Ask me what TSP is and I know from working with my dad.  I too, am a painter.  I was amazed by the names.  "Sediment"...just a fancy name for brown, right?  I've always thought I'd be really good at coming up with the fanciful names.  It's all in the marketing.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

 The next project is a Kitchen Island.  I've been contemplating what style, size etc.Thus far I have option 1 with plans:  (link below photo) This plan is super but I'm too cheap to fork out for untreated cedar posts.  I just don't feel like using used for this.  It'll be around for a long time. I realize I could use 2 2by 4's but I'm thinking they'd be sketchy......and it'd show.

or Option 2

desk into island bar

this option is to start with a dresser or similar and alter to the needs of the cook..... this is a great idea.  Totally got this idea from this gal's blog.  But she is there to share and motivate......ding....light bulb went on. I don't have a dresser in mind.  So the hunt goes on.  I do like this idea though. 
One important factor is that the husband needs to be able to pull up his stool and eat there.  Drop leaf would be good idea.  I'll keep searching.

Monday, January 17, 2011

finally...I'm done

 I started a project weeks ago.  I started without the proper tools and I am testiment that it was not a good idea to "get by" without them.  I have learned many lessons.  I am now a better carpenter.....a little frayed around the edges, but wiser.  Thank goodness that this is not to be inspected by my father.  I seem to judge my work to his.  I suppose that's a good thing.  He did have his levels of "quality".  If it was to be seen by all and judged there were no shortcuts.  This latest project is for my sanity and for my hubby's clothing.  Since he refuses to actually use his dresser, he is reduced to a cubbie system. (  I have also learned that I prefer natural wood to composite "simulated" wood products.   I hated the drawer hardware.  They were a pansy pieces of put it nicely. Can you tell it was my first time? This was one area that I called in help and luckily he could keep his cool, as I was ready to hock them across the road.  I recently bought a book all about building drawers.  I believe I should sit down and learn. 
  Well today is a new day!  No school, no half done projects haunting me.  The question is...."what shall I build next?" Below is a very bad photo of the finished product.  My apologies for the phone photo, but it's here and paid for so it'll be good for now. ...I think the most important thing on the list today will get cat food. 

There will be no building today.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

a little bummed that there's no snow....

Well, the rain has started again!  I was secretly hoping for a big snow storm that would take us by surprise!  No luck.  At least it's not 20 degrees.  I will have to get into my shop this evening after school.  In the mean time I'm planning my next "Knock-off Wood" creation...I wanted to show what you can do if you have a husband that saves trinkets and treasures.  Everything is very cool.  Ticket stubs, matchbooks, Mr. Peanut, guitar pics, Old pens, receipts (from his first Mac-Intosh Computer), old tins, baby books, poker chips, business cards, coasters, patches, lipton tea ceramics, doodles from church.....the list goes on.  I just realized i was finding all these little "treasures" and they didn't have a home.  I'd ask him what it was and he'd tell me that it was from his grandma or it was something he dug up on the farm when he was a kid or it was from aunt Alice or......  Now I totally understand about keeping this type of stuff.  I to have a secret collection myself. But I decided to finally starting a collection together in one box.  When the box was full and I had the perfect frame....these shrines were born.  Theses frames are from IKEA and were very affordable.  Actually should of gotten a few more.  Establishing a background is a important first step when creating a collage / assemblage.  I used photo copies of a few photos and some flat items (like coasters, ticket stubs, or doodles) a craft paper grocery bag and some snippets of note/letters that he wrote to me over the years.  The pair on the right are only 12"x12" and include more miniture type objects.  I created the larger version with more of a photo / flat type item theme.  I attended a crafty girls weekend up at Driftcreek Camp on the Oregon Coast Range.  while the other ladies were scrap booking or sister and I arranged, rearranged and then arranged again to get all the ingredients just perfect.  We used hot glue to adhere them.  The photo above was very difficult to acquire with out sorry.  But for now you can at least get an idea.  Gotta run and get off to my real job......Art Teacher.  How many days til summer break?

Sunday, January 2, 2011

doors again

I started thinking about how I've used doors and found this photo.  The photo is a bit slanty, sorry.  It's a hall tree.  The legs were purchased on ebay from back east and originally from an old kitchen table.  The top flips up for hidden storage and I added hooks for keys and a vintage garden tool for decoration.  The door was unusually narrow so it wasn't too heavy.  Weight can be an issue. Once I get all the top quality ingredient together sometime the creation ends up weighing a ton! I hated to see this one go.....but I've learned you can't keep every project.  I often wonder how Ana White finds a place for all the things she builds....I'm betting her friends and family get a rotation.  I should of kept this one.  

Another one of my favorites is this bench.  It has a door frame as part of the back.  I will be making another like this soon as I scored the cedar fence boards this week.  All I need now is to finish my current project, but it's been so stinkin' cold.