Thursday, April 30, 2009

Beach Bungalow Feature on Simply Hue Design

Feature Article on our Beach Home:
As I have discussed in earlier posts, I am an artist who is a self-diagnosed sufferer of obsessive compulsive decorating disorder. Consistently arranging and rearranging furniture, paintings, accessories, husband, children....whatever.

And since I can't keep my hands away from the paintbrush for too long, things that are stationary tend to get painted.  Therefore you can imagine my excitement when Vicki Dvorak from Simply Hue - Your source for color inspiration, contacted me to see if she could feature our home on her blog site.

Holy Toledo Bat Man ~ a real excuse to redecorate and rearrange! The heavens in all their decorated glory have smiled on me.  Time to get to work...

Since the master bathroom vanity and mirror had already been painted.  As well as

the tile work and sink (images inspired by the amazing illustrations of artist Michael Hague)

 I had to add a little paint to the wall in my daughters bedroom!

I told my son, who is at college, the article makes our house look so good we should have no problem renting out his room. :) Any takers???
If you have a moment, please visit her Vicki"s blog, Simply Hue. Her site is beautiful and it is a true honor to be featured there. 

Monday, April 27, 2009

Hand Painted Pottery Ready for Va. Beach Garden Club Flower Show and Sale

Hand Painted Pottery Plates, Hand Painted Pottery Garden Markers with Matching Garden Tools, Slumped Bottle Cheese Platters with Art Work Labels and Pottery Necklaces all packaged and ready for the Va. Beach Garden Club Flower Show and Sale on Wednesday, April 29 from 10:00am - 5:00pm at the Va. Beach Convention Center. Please stop by to visit, pick up plants for your garden, get gardening tips, chat with fellow gardeners, and perhaps purchase a mother's day, graduation, or "glad your my friend" gift.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Book Club Reads, Drinks French Wines, Writes a Haiku, And Discusses "The Elegance of the Hedgehog"

Camellia Flowers
And a cup of Jasmine Tea.

Last night was my debut as book club hostess for our couple's book club. The book of choice: "The Elegance of the Hedgehog."; the group: eleven philosophically challenged adults; the theme based dinner: ratatouille, fresh green salad with asian sesame dressing, french bread with goat milk butter, and tiramisu cheesecake; the wines of choice: French Reds; the challenge: create a haiku; a few of the results:

Renee, Paloma
deep, kindred souls, Renee's death
saves Paloma's life.

Old lady, young girl
they hide their intelligence
someone will find out.
Paintings on the Wall
The Revenge
of the Hedgehogs
and five syllables.  

Amidst the adzuki Beans 
a camellia bush

Wealth, dearth, and life loss
Cats, sushi, fatness abounds

Friends create new hope


Pollen is Present
coating Everything in sight
Claritin my friend.

My job really sucks.
It is slowly killing me.
Want unemployment.
And Finally ~ Welcoming our two new members:

Husband, wife, neighbors
they live on Lakewood Circle
The Book Club midway.

There is way too much talent in this group!

The discussion was stimulating. Those who had actually finished the book thoroughly enjoyed the characters, dialogue, handsome prose, and well-turned phrases. As a note to those who have not yet read "Elegance of the Hedgehogs" ~ muddle through the beginning, you will love this book by the end.

PS...Suz...Thanks for purchasing my "Thanksgiving Day Parade" Painting. :)

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Hand Painted Mermaid Book Shelf....The Finished Piece...Ready for Auction

Hand Painted Mermaid Book Shelf is finally Finished and ready for Auction

I just finished with the final step, coating the book shelf with shellac to preserve the painting. Now it is ready for Saturday evening's auction. I kind of like the way it looks in our if anyone wants to buy this, and donate to a starving artist who loves to read..... :)
Best of Luck with your auction!!!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

A day in the Art Studio....Look what gets accomplished.

Hand Painted Book Shelf For Star of the Sea School's Auction:
Well...I did what I set out to do yesterday, stayed focused, stayed in my "studio", and painted this book shelf.
The kindergarten class, along with a little parental supervision (thanks to Genie) painted their fingerprints all over the sides and top of this beautiful book shelf. I spent a good portion of yesterday morning pondering what I would do with all those little prints.
This is what I finally came up with. Of course, there is still much left to do, but I think I'm pleased with the start.
I better get back to work, as the auction is this Saturday...Yikes.

Enjoy your Earth Day!

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

To Do List...Paint, Paint, and Paint....

My List For Today ~ To Keep me from Distractions
This week is a busy production week so, of course, the weather is gorgeous. To keep me from the outdoor distractions of a walk, I had to create this list to remind me of things that MUST get done. There is the bookshelf to paint for Star of the Sea School's auction this weekend (turning little fingerprints into some kind of underwater scene ~ will post a picture of the finished shelf later this week), paintings to finish before my art show in May, Etsy items to photograph and list, art pieces for the Garden Club Flower sale next Wednesday, and "The Elegance of the Hedgehog" book to be finished and menu planned for our couples book club on Thursday, which my husband and I are hosting. Oh, did I mention the weather is beautiful?
AND...My son is giving his first official tour at the University of Va. today. I could easily make it there in a few hours......
Oh well, work beckons, and I love what I do. So, happily off to paint I go.
Wishing you all the delights of spring!

Friday, April 17, 2009


Bleeding Hearts in Full Bloom
I love the way our yard looks at this time of the year. Our dogwood trees are in full bloom as are the bleeding hearts and hyacinths. The pansies, scattered around the house in window boxes, containers, and in the garden, are happily displaying their colorful petals. The mint is green and wildly excited about taking up as much space as possible. The azalea bushes are showing colorful buds which means, probably sometime next week, they'll delight us with a royal show of color. Next will bloom the hydrangea, my favorite, and the most romantic shrub of which I can never have enough. The weather has been rainy and cool this past week ~ not so good for our children on spring break ~ but now the sun is shining and in its springtime heaven. Our garden, in the upcoming weeks, will continue to surprise us and all the little critters who are just as excited about this colorful riot of spring.
Cheers to our continual growth!!!
If you are so inclined, share your favorite springtime flower.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

The Bottle Tree...A Southern Tradition

Beside our Southern Beach Cottage sits a bottle tree.

 History of the Bottle Tree
The bottle tree reflects an ancient African tradition that can be traced as far back as ninth century Congo where natives hung hand-blown glass on huts and trees to ward off evil. The tradition eventually became a part of Southern African-American folklore. In the early American South, trees, typically cedar because its branches point toward the heavens, were stripped of foliage and decorated with colorful glass bottles.

 According to African legend, the bottles attract evil spirits, which are drawn to the bursts of sunlit color. The spirits then become trapped inside the bottles, their voices heard moaning as the wind passes by. Though the legend that the bottles trap evil spirits is widely accepted, some believe that the bottles hold the spirits of their ancestors, while others contend that the bottles grant wishes.

The bottles on our Bottle Tree were slumped (fired in my kiln until they flattened), strung with fishing line, and hung from our dogwood tree. My husband created our bottle tree using some bottles which I had previously slumped. Over the year he has added more bottles of various colors and the tree has become the center of attention in our front yard. He even placed a spotlight under the tree, which lights the tree making it look especially beautiful at night. This is a wonderful tradition passed down through the generations. Not only do bottle trees ward off evil spirits, but they can become a unique focal point in any garden, and quite the topic of conversation.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Re-Decorating Again

From one suffering from O.C.D.D. (Obsessive, Compulsive Decorating Disorder)

Does nothing stay stationary?!
I spent Saturday moving furniture, pictures, and nick knacks around. Yes, it was gorgeous outside, but since I freely admit that I have obsessive compulsive decorating disorder, I spent a good portion of the day inside redecorating.

 My children have learned to spot the manic gleam in my eye when the redecorating mood hits, and they high tail it out of the house. 

Things are always moving around my house!

Although this weekend my daughter was sweet enough to hang for a little while, so I had help with the heavy moving. (But, I have learned that placing a towel under a heavy object makes it easier to move. Thus, I have moved many a large piece of furniture all by myself.) 
Everyone is aware of my O.C.D.D.
My good friends know about my disorder, but there are always those newbies who will walk in the house and say...."That wasn't there last week was it?" Anyway, just thought I would post a few pictures of my newest space redesign. 
Should I rearrange?
Let me know if there is anything you think could be moved a tinge to make the overall scheme look better. But be forewarned, I'm already thinking of pictures that might look a little bit better if moved...maybe over here..?

Friday, April 10, 2009

Friday Illustration....Talisman

Illustration Friday
Theme: Talisman

1) Magical object: an object believed to give magical powers to somebody who carries or wears it. 2) Something with magical power: something believed to have magical properties.

Hmm...Let's think about it.

In the company of delightful people, sharing great conversation while sipping a drink that's not only beautiful to look at, but delicious and refreshing.

While I would hope one would not end up wearing their cosmopolitan, I do believe that while holding and sipping this drink one could feel the magical properties it offers.

Talisman......Cosmopolitan.....Yeah, I believe it fits.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Wordless Wednesday....A Picture Says A Thousand Words

Girls Night Out.
Enjoying a night on the town with my mom, two sisters, and sister-in-law. My brother was suppose to join us, but ended up having to work late. So I "photoshopped" him in.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

A budding artists science fair project.

A Science Fair and Art Project on Zebras......
Yesterday, my neighbor, whose daughter is a regular participant in my art classes, called to see if I was at home. Her daughter had just finished a school project in which she was able to show off her artistic skills. She had explained to her mom the steps she had to take to complete the painting. "First we sketch it out on paper. Then we draw our sketch onto the board. Next, we outline it with sharpie. Then we paint it." As you can see from her project, she was also aware of her cool and warm color scheme. Her zebra pops against the cool background, and her information is highlighted by the warm colors of red and orange. In addition, her facts were first grade perfect ~ For example: Protection ~ "Run Fast!" :) Now I know what a zebra looks like, and exactly what to do if I'm ever chased by one.
As an art teacher, this made my day. Not only are my students a joy to work with, but, by golly, I have proof they're actually learning.
As a side note...she better get an A on this one!

Sunday, April 5, 2009

...Another day of production...hand painted garden art

Production Day...Hand painted pottery garden stakes and matching hand painted garden tools.
What a perfect day for painting garden art.
The weather is springtime gorgeous.
The sky is cloudless, the sun bright, and the breeze cool.
Our windows are open wide.
The birds sing joyfully as they go about their daily routine.
Time for a walk!

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Illustration Friday ~ Poise

Afternoon Practice
This is my first entry into Illustration Friday - a weekly art exhibit for artists and illustrators. The theme for this week is "Poise". I thought this painting would be appropriate.


5x4" acrylic painting on gallery wrapped canvas
Margarita ville
Sitting on the beach, sipping a margarita, and watching the sun bake...
How many more days 'til summer?
Hmmm...until then, perhaps all that's needed is "A frozen concoction that helps us hang on".