Thursday, September 25, 2014

More Leaves Falling

This morning I decided to finish tackling this week's Diva Challenge, to tangle "leaves." I was going to get very elaborate and collect leaves from about the yard--I have pine, olive, orange, lemon, grapefruit, mulberry, palm, palo verde, mesquite (and I know I've missed a few trees) plus the saguaro, prickly pear and agave--but I thought I'd better leave that for another day (get it? Leave? HA!) I haven't even considered the flowers and shrubs...SIGH.
I did a little twinchie thing yesterday and posted that on my Flickr page. Very simple and the holly leaves are a recurrent pattern in my drawings from, well, a while ago. There was a holly that grew up to my bedroom window of my childhood home, always colorful with the bright red berries and my father-in-law had one that was going to take over his porch and always poked whoever walked by. And it's not too early to think about the Holly-daze if Costco has had ribbons and bows in their warehouses for a month already!

But, I digress.

This is my Leaves v2:

If it bears any resemblance to the It's a String Thing Challenge #59, it's not coincidental, as I used the same patterns. But, I didn't cheat as I made a separate response as a zendala (see yesterdays post or here).
So, hopefully, the Leaves have fallen where they may and I can get back to summer around here. Have a brilliant, bright and sunny day!

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Autumn Challenges

It appears that everyone on the planet has autumn on the calendar, and yes, elsewhere this time of year means "fall" (in the Northern latitudes). Here in the desert Southwest we're just getting out of "Inferno" and heading into just "Hot." Autumn is yet a couple months away.
Some recent travels to Northern AZ and Southern Utah reminded me, that yes, it is September and leaves turn pretty colors, while we're still almost entirely green (which is in itself an anomoly as the monsoon season has been, ahem, generous in its offerings this summer) in the heart of Arizona.
Thus far, I've only really completed one of those challenges, the It's a String Thing 59:

The patterns are Oke by Michele Beauch and Meringue by Kelley Kelly on a string by Adele Bruno, the mastermind behind the String Thing. Clever. I added some acorns (and the ubiquitous Tipple) on the bar coaster. The pencil shading has already rubbed off, but I like the medium, working in the round.
Thanks for taking a look see; hopefully I'll finish up those other autumny ideas before autumn actually arrives here! 

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Salmon on the Brain

This is a dangerous thing to do: research ideas for Every Inchie Monday. I've been starting the brainstorming on Sundays so I have ideas brewing before the actual Monday challenge. Sooo...the word of the day was "salmon." My first thought was FOOD (funny, that!), processing the thought that we're all supposed to eat three servings a WEEK for heart health. Like THAT is going to happen!!

I picked up the September issue of Woman's Day magazine to see what their dinner meal calendar had for salmon entrees, and there was only one for the whole month, a recipe for salmon burgers.
Fair enough, canned salmon is ALMOST affordable, but I'm still not going to cook salmon this week. What I'm going to do with that and a slew of other food images from the magazine is to make a collage for my brother and his wife, a chef, as a Christmas prezzie. But not today.

Then, I Googled "salmon" to see what I might gather there. There were the fishies, but there was also a section on the color "salmon," that peachy-pink color. I clicked on that section and I came across photos of roses. My forever favorites are named, "Sonia," a true all-over salmon colored rose, but I could not find very good images of those, so I looked for flowers that resembled Sonias. I had two ideas in mind from there--either pick up paint chips at Home Depot to collage (which did not happen, but another idea I need to revisit) or tangle a line drawing of a rose, which I've seen elsewhere to amazing effect.

Which is NOT what happened here. My attempt looked more like a Peter Max drawing, so I'm calling this challenge done and WAY off base. This is what my brain looks like on "salmon." YIKES!

Thanks for visiting this bizarre travel through salmon and make sure to see all the beautiful work that the other participants are doing at EIM. I am grateful for the opportunity to challenge the grey matter.
Have a brilliant, salmon-colored day!

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Awaiting the Storm

Hurricane Odile is due ANY MINUTE and I'm busy...solving puzzles. I should be gathering supplies and making sure we survive another flooding, but I'd rather be playing with a growing collection of art supplies and just generally exercising some grey matter.
For your viewing pleasure I have selected some of this weeks' art blog challenges. First up is the Every Inchie Monday word of the week is: Schedule. My first thought was, "Who has time for that?" Then I had to rethink the concept as I always have to squeeze in time for making art. It always seems to be the LAST thing I do each day, and that's not necessarily a good thing for a self-employed artist. HA!
Then, the Twinchie thing this week is "Teddy." I love my teddies, yes, all of them. But I digress. I've even made a few teddy bears and don't really want to do that again anytime soon. My son has one that I made many moons ago, packed away. At 24, he's not really into that kind of thing, but I'll save him for his son (His name is Carlton Ritz, as he used to be dressed up in a bowtie, very formal, but I'm not sure which box he's stuffed into or I'd take his picture for this exercise). So, I went with Teddy Roosevelt and one of his famous sayings. And a teddy bear.
Lastly, my boyfriend is a big fan of Neil Young. He understands Neil's language and speaks Canadian quite well, right, eh?! Neil's not a great singer, but his lyrics are profound and moving. Listening to "Helpless" the other night I challenged myself to create an image that illustrates the line about the timeless, "Blue, blue window behind the stars..." and the yellow moon rising. The moon and the window images are from my new friends at the Morgue Files, a collection of FREE photographic images; the stars are from NASA. If you haven't been to those sites, what are you waiting for?
As always, have a brilliant day and thank you for your kindnesses, wonderful comments and just generally being in my corner as cheerleaders!

Diva Zendala

Oh, joy! The rural mail carrier brought prezzies from Amazon today: a set of Faber-Castell Manga series PITT pens and a stack of round bar coasters to draw on.
So, break out the new art supplies and go to work on this week's Diva Challenge! The parameter this week was to create a duotangle with Phicops and the Diva's Dance, patterns by and for the Harms, the couple behind the Diva's blog. This is my response:

I'm sure this may have worked out better if I had not hand-drawn the geometry of the mandala, but that's part of the charm of all this, the quirkiness of line and pattern (this is such a far cry from my former self who would've gone bonkers over a wonky line or anything out of square or place). I added a bunch of perfs (circles) and if some of them happen to look like "Black Pearls," that's how it goes.
The coaster paper doesn't like to be worked too hard; filling in black spots was kind of a chore. They are thick and absorbent, as they should be. I don't know how functional these coasters will be if I actually used them for drinks, we shall have to find out soon (although, I think this is too pretty to use!).
For now, it's hatches to batten down as another hurricane is headed to Arizona. Oh, joy!

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Shade ING

The Diva Challenge for this week was to utilize a new pattern called, "ING," like the internet bank. It's a fun little geometric pattern. My personal challenge was to use patterns that I'm just not happy with: Mooka, Pokeleaf and Tagh. Then, because of the hour I was working on this challenge (why, oh, why do I need to be awake at 3AM?), I added another layer of difficulty: to utilize shading in all it's different characteristics (depth, order, volume, and direction of light).
The result is not dissimilar to the giant cockroach that joined me in the kitchen. YIKES. I know, TMI, but...such is life after major flooding, I guess. I'm still not keen on all those other patterns, but I found ING to be a fascinating tangle.
Make sure to visit the Diva to see all the tangly people and their creative contributions.

Friday, September 12, 2014

Drupe Flower

Adele Bruno of Tickled to Tangle put out her challenge of the week to use string 056 by Jill Dobis and some tangles that start with the letter "D." At first, I thought there was too much going on as there were a lot of loops in the string and some fancy patterns to chose from. I started to take some out of the picture then added some favorites for a high contrast image.
I like the official "Drupe," which forms a blossom. At the last minute I added some "dust bunnies," a pattern by Margaret Bremnan, in pencil to carry through the garden theme.
If I try this again I think I'd place the "drip drops," a tangle by Debbie Purdue, a lot closer together to create a definitive pattern. What do you think?
Make sure to check out how all the talented artists responded to the challenge! I always look forward to seeing what everyone else was up to.

Monday, September 8, 2014

The Little Red Spot

While I did some investigative work for this week's Inchie, with an emphasis on red spots, I found some beautiful embroidery work of Jupiter. Very intricate work. I also found the flag of Japan, and I didn't want to do something, well, just so ordinary. I'd like to do some collage work, but that didn't really fit into my schedule today. Something about Hurricane Norbert coming to town. Yippee!

I was also thinking about the red dots that artists have been known to put on sold artworks and sometimes not sold, to try the psyche of an art collector--people want what they can't have. So, kind of in that vein, I slapped a red dot on a photograph I took of some red rocks of Arizona.
The story of that hike will have to wait for another day, but suffice to say I survived to tell the tale (no, really). I call the photograph, "Perseverance," that little juniper is probably twenty years old, but it's has had to put up with a very extreme environment.
Thanks for taking the time to view my work and for all your kind comments on previous inchies. Be sure to check out all the creative people at EIM. Have a brilliant day!

Sunday, September 7, 2014

I did it! I did the X-Did Challenge!

This past week's Diva Challenge was a real challenge for me. The objective was to incorporate Annette Carlo's pattern, "X-Did." For the better part of the week it was did-not, with a side order of didn't. We were traveling, so there were many miles and a few hotels in between, so I was scribbling on stationery and sketching on receipts. I wanted to do this thing well and good as Annette is a very talented artist and I was not going to not "do" X-Did.
So at home in my normal environs with some index cards and a very sleepless night, the geometry all came clear to me. And all the practice helped me to be able to draw fairly straight lines when I worked out my "real" artwork, no rulers in sight.  The practice rounds on cards looked like argyle knit, so I'll get back to that, but I like the organic feel to the final product.
Kudos to Annette for a very interesting challenge. Check out her blog for her take in a spiral pattern, quite a work and as always, check out the other talented tangly people at the Diva's blog.

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Teenie Venus

One of my favorite paintings of the Renaissance period is Boticelli's Venus de Milo. She's beautiful and the colors are fantastic. I also have a love-hate-love relationship with Leonardo diVinci. I love him for the mind he had to wrap around geometry and some of his inventions. So I knew I just had to work this out somehow. The resulting digital collage has a layer of mica built in to add even more age to the images that make it look more like stone than paper, paint and canvas. Because, stone is ageless.

Yes, I did some editing of Vetruvius Man; I didn't want to be accused of some pornographic message but I also didn't want to have to put pants on him, although that could be a humorous take on the imagery. Perhaps I need to revisit this concept?!

Tangled to a T

This is my answer to this week's String Thing challenge. All the details from Adele Bruno are on her blog. I stuffed all the tangles in this one, even Tagh, which is not a happy pattern for me. No, really, it's there.
There was quite a fabric/quilting feel to some of the other patterns. I was delighted to be able to create a border out of Trivet in macro mode with Ticking, since my new journal/scrapbook is developing a bad case of tangled edges.
I can't wait to see what some of the other submissions look like--other artists really take on these challenges with flair and creativity.