Monday, March 27, 2017

The Art Nook is Heating up with New Classes

Cristi and I are back at it, 
at The New Dimensions Studio.

We'll start with a wonderful class using polymer clay and glass globes. These will be great to hang with tea light candles or little plants in them.

You can have your choice of one of the following 3 sizes, and will get one large 8" ball, a tear drop globe or 2 smaller globes. Then, you'll take these home to back in a 250 degree oven to make them adhere to the glass.

The class this Wednesday, March 29th at 6 to 6:30.

For more info click here

On Wednesday April 5th, we'll paint subway tiles in alcohol inks. Join us for Tulip Tiles. See you at 6pm for a fun night decorating this Spring favorite.

For more info click here

Thursday, April 13th we'll be back painting Crab-apple blossoms 
on Yupo paper.
 Sorry we don't have a photo yet but one is coming.

The warm weather will be bringing the Garden Parties back! 
Stay tuned. 

New this year I am offering a 3 day 3 night Girl's Art Out 
on South Twin Lake in Conover Wisconsin July 18th through July 21st.

Details to follow soon.

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Unforgettable Art and Alzheimer's, A Few Thoughts

Unforgettable Art is around the corner and I'm looking for ideas for this year's painting.

This will be my third year participating in Unforgettable. I always like to put a positive spin on things so I usually talk about how fun it is to paint alongside my fellow artist and to meet new artists etc. etc. But the truth is it's pretty stressful. I usually don't have the time to walk around and socialize during the event, I need every moment to finish my painting. Most artists don't usually produce great works in 6 hours that are living room hang-able quality. Don't get me wrong, some days we do. But, mostly not. I like to paint the painting I'm planning on doing a few times ahead of that day to make sure I have enough time to complete it. I can correct any composition problems, color choices or whatever ahead of time. My paintings usually take me several weeks to complete. And even if I do my best will someone like it enough to pay a few hundred for it? Will it be one of those days that nothing works and my piece is terrible?

I know I'm not unique. There are a lot of artists out there that loose sleep over this event. Why would we do it? Well, for most of us it's for those people we have loved and lost to Alzheimer's. The names are different but the stories are all too familiar. It's those people who we love, who so slowly slip away from us a bit each day, until one day we turn around and realize that they are already gone... and we didn't notice enough to say good bye because physically nothing changed. My list of friends who are going through this, or have, with their own parents grows longer and longer each year.

I think one of the cruelest parts of this disease lingers long after that loved one is gone.  It's there whenever a middle aged child of an Alzheimer's patient looses their train of thought or their car keys. "Is is starting for me? Will I one day put my family through that?" Will this be a cycle that continues through the generations? I hope not. I believe we can solve this and in doing so open the doors to understanding other forms of dementia and other neurological diseases like Parkinson's.

So I have to sit back and take a deep breath and realize that I am just a small part in the wheels that drive this event. It is the people who attend Unforgettable who dig deep in their pockets to give what they can to help fund the Alzheimer's Association. It is those people who make the event a success. I am merely entertainment, and only one of 50 at that. All the same, I want to do my best.

There is a part of the night that is truly wonderful. It's after you've finished your painting and talked to the guests, and sat through the auction and seen your piece sold. It's when the event is all over and you're ready to go home, tired. There's a few moments when you breath in a deep breath and realize that you did your part and you think, "Gee that was fun. Can't wait till next year."

So what shall I paint this year? Any suggestions? Leave a comment.

For more information and tickets click here.


Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Word of Art 3D Pictures

Last Friday was Word of Art 3D.

 Word of Art is a collaboration of Authors and Artists. In its third year, artists of dimension were also invited to participate.  WoA3D was part of the Burpee Museum of Natural History 75th Anniversary celebration.
It was wonderful meeting the author of my piece, Hummingbird and Cottonwood, Paul Holler. He was thrilled that some choose his words. I thought they were beautiful.

Hummingbird and Cottonwood

Where there is a hummingbird
all places are one place

Where there is a cottonwood
all breezes are one breeze 

And when breeze crosses place
and the hummingbird

closes her wings
around the measureless

and, opening,casts
it to the sky

her wings fade to 
nothing at all

and everything

                 - Paul Holler

Jan July stands with her author for Zod.

John Naretta has a drink before the evening begins at our table full of friends.

After the authors read there pieces the artist got up to explain there thoughts and how it translated to their art.
Both the Wemmer's had pieces there.

Pamula Parkenson won the art award for her stunning piece, Crystal Droplets.


An Update on Classes and Shows

It's official! I love teaching classes in series.

I just finished up my four week class of intermediate alcohol ink classes. It was wonderful! To see people apply what they've learned into their own styles is terrific.We had a variety of paintings; dogs, owls landscape, abstract, then we started coping a favorite.

              At first the swirls of Starry Night were really difficult. We all felt maybe we had made a mistake trying this painting in alcohol inks. But then, we were mesmerized, we couldn't stop.

 Some of us went on to try other Masters.Some had projects they wanted to try.


Things are getting busy as we approach the warmer weather. I'm working on a show at Sinisnawa Mounds - a Dominican retreat and conference center. The show will run April 5th through the end of May.

 The next 4 week series of Alcohol Inks on Canvas starts on Tuesday, April 18th. 1-4pm Info and registration here

Spring Art Scene is April 21 & 22nd. I will be showing with the Rockford Art Guild at the Trinity Lutheran Activity Center, 215 N 1st St. It  will be include my first Art Installation in the parking lot. I admit that it is my first one and I don't have a lot of time to pull this off. I know I'll learn a lot.

Then, the 14th annual Unforgettable Art, an Affair for Alzheimer's is April 29th. If you have any suggestions for my canvas please let me know. I plan on doing a vertical canvas this year. For more info and tickets go here

 Looking for a more adventurous painting experience?
Fascinated by the performance art that's becoming so popular?

Well, grab a friend (or not, we'll be your friends ) and come for a night of fun and exploration. Each person will start with their own 11" x 14" canvas. You'll choose your own acrylic color palette, up to 5 colors and be asked to fill out a simple questionnaire about what you like. We'll all start off on our own canvasses by painting the background and a few details.  We'll give you a few pointers along the way. You'll have to be quick because in 15 minutes the music will stop and you'll move on to another canvas. After reviewing that person's likes you will use their palette to continue painting on THEIR canvas! We're sure to come up with some very original pieces by the end of the night!

Tuesday, March 21st
6:00 to 8:30pm

New Dimensions Studio
3333 Maria Linden Drive
Rockford, Illinois 61114

Everything you need will be supplied. Feel free to bring your own adult beverage if you'd like.

Register here