Saturday, April 12, 2014

Somerset Memories

Thrilled to have my work featured in the current, Spring 2014 issue of Somerset Memories. Starting on page 44, you will find my article and step-by-step tutorial entitled Memory Cards: A Unique & Artful Way to Store & Display Your Photographs. Sending thanks to Jana Holstein, Managing Editor, and the whole crew at Somerset Memories.

 Front Side of cards

Back side of cards

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Workshops: A Student's View

Last month I posted my top 5 tips for instructors on both planning for and execution of an art workshop. In response, I received an email from an artist who shared with me her own list of tips from the perspective of a student. I think her thoughts are right on target and have included them below. I believe they could be helpful to many instructors in our community. Any resemblance to a workshop instructor that you have had may be purely coincidental. Or not.

1. Avoid extended introductions. Class time is usually limited and it should not be used to "get to know each other." At retreats, people can get to know each other at meals and the bar. Classes should be - primarily - for instruction.

2. Avoid padded supply lists. An oversized supply list is a safety net for the teacher, but can be a hardship financially and physically for the participants. Try to limit lists, or perhaps provide a "bare bones" list and then some suggestions for additional "niceties." And do not list items by specific manufacturers unless they are absolutely necessary. Instead, provide the item type and then share info about your own likes.

3. Make sure that the workshop content reflects the pre-workshop description. Yes -- I have taken workshops with artists who presented a totality different project or technique from the one offered.

4. Attitude. The teacher's first job is to generate enthusiasm or excitement for the subject. I think I believe that an enthusiastic teacher with lesser skills can often outshine the skilled teacher who is "just there." On this topic...

-----Do not demonstrate boredom.
-----Do not use workshop time to work on your own projects.
-----Do not present a "live" book or video. By this I mean that a workshop should be largely a unique entity and not just a "phone it in" presentation of the instructor's videos or book.
-----Avoid editing the content/demonstration when there are a number of "groupies" present. They may have heard the basics before , but the newbies deserve the full course.

5. The Delicate Dance. Instructors are charged with a dual task: to present/protect their own style/vision and to foster/nurture individual expression in their students. Not an easy task, but when it is done well, it is a source of creative excitement. I think it is what we are seeking when we sign-up for workshops and retreats.

Thoughts? Opinions? Additional tips?

Thursday, April 3, 2014

It's a Setup

I have been creating work for Artexpo New York for a number of months now. Today was the day I was finally able to see it all come together -- booth setup.

Artexpo is being held inside Pier 94 in NYC

I am in booth 210 -- home sweet home

This is how it all began today -- like a blank canvas

Unpacking is always a good way to start

The main wall - 10 feet wide. The 4 small pieces in the lowest row were completed in collaboration with Roxanne Evans Stout.

Work from my Passages series on one 4 foot side wall

Work from my Interior Angles series on the opposite wall

A corner view

The other corner view

Artexpo New York opens Friday 4/4 at 10am and runs through Sunday 4/6. I will share more pics from the event in the coming days -- the next best thing to being there!

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Nooks and Crannies

Detail shots of new work created for Artexpo New York - opening this Friday 4/4 and running through Sunday 4/6. Decided to go all nooks and crannies for this series.

Contact me for complimentary tickets if you would like to attend.

Sunday, March 30, 2014

One of a Kind Giveaway

I am happy to report that I am a guest blogger on the Spellbinders blog today.  To make it even better, I will be giving away the project I have created for this tutorial. And to make it even better than that, Spellbinders is hosting a giveaway (details are at the end of this post) of some of the products I used to create my card. 

Card? Yes...card. I have never made a traditional card (shared with the public at least) before but thought that today was the perfect time. As a blogger for Spellbinders, one of my goals is to introduce mixed media techniques to all the card makers and scrapbookers who use their products. Figured I should walk the walk, step inside their shoes, and make a card. Who knows -- maybe I will scrapbook next. I believe creative people come in all forms and that there is every reason for us to cross over to "the other side" -- whichever that may be.

This card was inspired by Spellbinders new Birds on a Wire die. I die cut and embossed some decorative paper to start the project. Leaving the cut paper in the die, I used the die as a stencil and inked the birds as well. You will note that one bird is in a different shade. 

I selected Spellbinders A2 Curved Matting Basics B die set to create a window, using dies #4 and #6 and decorative paper.

Turning the window over, I taped the birds to the reverse side..., when turned back over,  they would be strung through the window on the front.

I next used the largest die in the same set to cut and emboss a different color paper to use as a base for the window.

Using adhesive pop dots to create dimension, I then adhered the window to the base.

You can better see the layers from this angle.

I then used Spellbinders Scratch Lines Texture Plate to create additional embellishment for the card. This plate deeply embossed a piece of foil so that I can add a bit of texture as well. I cut this strip into 3 pieces to place in different areas on the card.

Using Spellbinders Font One - Lowercase die set, I cut a phrase that was inspired by the birds out of decorative paper.

With all my components ready, I used a piece of decorative paper to make the card itself. I chose to cut it to a size of approximately 6 ½" x 5 ½" when folded based on the measurements of all the pieces that I had made.

Finally the time had come to put together all the individual parts and create my first card.


Supply List

Spellbinders Paper Art Supplies:

MMM-001 Spellbinders® Artisan X-plorer
IN-024 Spellbinders® Shapeabilities® Birds on a Wire
S5-172 Spellbinders® Nestabilities® A2 Curved Matting Basics B
GLT-001 Spellbinders® Scratch Lines Texture Plate
S5-199 Spellbinders® Shapeabilities® Font One Lowercase
F-012 Spellbinders® Precious Metals Premium Craft Foils

Preferred Promotional Partners: Tsukineko®  Dew Drop Brilliance Pigment Ink Pad, Tsukineko®  Dew Drop Momento Die Ink Pad,  Imagine Crafts® Inkblushers Sponge

Cross Promotional Partners: Authentique paper, DCWV® paper

Other: scissor, adhesive, pop dots, tape


To be entered into the giveaway sponsored by Spellbinders and be eligible to win many of the products I used to create my card, head over to the Spellbinders blog and follow instructions there.

For a chance to win this "one of a kind" card, please leave a comment on this blog post and make sure I have your email address. Comments will close end of day Wednesday 4/2 and the winner will be contacted by email.

This giveaway is now closed. Congratulations to Lynn Hardy who is the lucky winner!

Friday, March 28, 2014

Artexpo New York 2014

Six pieces from my Passages series to be shown at Artexpo New York

One week from today I will be standing in my booth at Artexpo New York. This art exhibition has been running for 35 years in NYC but this will be my first time exhibiting. If you are in or close to New York, this is definitely going to be a must see event. There are over 400 exhibitors and more than 17,000 people have already gotten their tickets online.

Artexpo New York is being held at Pier 94, on the Hudson River on the West Side of NYC. The Piers, each 1,100 feet long, were completed in 1935. While Pier 94 is exclusively used for exhibition space, the others are used as passenger terminals for cruise ships and as the home of USS Intrepid.

Artexpo is really three shows in one. The Solo Pavilion includes emerging and mid-career artists who have been juried in. I am part of this area, in booth S210. Artexpo also includes a more traditional exhibition area which is gallery-based. Finally, there is the Deco Expo Showcase which focuses on art and framing.

Those of you who are able to attend can also take advantage of a huge array of educational opportunities hosted by well-known industry professionals at the Topic & Trends Education Series. There are nearly 25 seminars, demonstrations and lectures over the course of the three days. For example, special guest David Bromstad, winner of the first HGTV Design Star, will be speaking on Friday.

The exhibition is open on Friday April 4 from 10am-7pm, Saturday April 5 from 10am-7pm, and Sunday April 6 from 10am-6pm. There is an opening night party being held on Friday from 4-7pm - and this includes food, drink and gift bags to all attendees. Tickets for the Artexpo are $20 but if you contact me directly, I can provide you with complimentary admission.

I have not yet had time to photograph all of my work, but I have been shooting detail shots along the way. Here are just a few...