Thursday, August 28, 2014


We arrived mid-morning for our few days in Venice. It was exciting to sail in on our little boat and then switch to a Vaporetti to find our hotel. Luckily, our apartment was located close to the Vaporetti stop, so the cases did not have to be rolled too far.

The apartment was at the top of the building and had a quirky little roof top terrace, which required climbing through a window to access. The location was incredible and we were just steps from San Marco Square!

Sketchbook in hand, I spent 5 days exploring and painting. The city was full of wonders (and sighs), to inspire me.

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Stratford part II

One of the downsides to blogging while traveling, is that wifi sucks and my phone can only post about 2 or 3 images at a time! I will use this reminder to keep my posts short.

The kids and I had a picnic watching the barges. Lady Macbeth kept Caity under control, while I did some sketching in the gardens.


What better place to visit in Shakespeare's 500th year, than Stratford-Upon-Avon?

A few days into our Summer, I took my girls into Stratford. Last summer, they enjoyed seeing "As You Like It" it at The Swan. We took a look at the list of plays, but they were The Bard's less fun, more adult plays. We did check out the latest costume display while in the building though and made plans to see "The Comedy of Errors" in a couple of weeks time at The Globe, London.

We also stopped to chat to a lovely English Bobby and the kids discussed differences that they see with police officers back home in the States.

I was impressed by the discussion they had with him over US gun control. THEY were impressed by the lack of guns carried by the officer!

Outside The Swan playhouse, we fed the local namesakes and

watched the barges coming through the locks. It struck me that mooring up for a
Champagne performance in The Swan, would make for a very pleasant day. I added it to my bucket list.

Monday, October 7, 2013

DeMeng Workshop

We made crazy vehicles in Michael DeMeng's workshop. Here are a selection of some of the works in progress:

Here we had a critique with Michael discussing everyone's progress.

I loved this steampunked up critter!

This is the cool studio by the harbor that we worked in for four days, pretty cool view!

Later in the day we had a project with Tracy and Teesha Moore with a bunch of artists from different workshops.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013


Last week my hubby and I went to Petaluma on an art retreat. It was more of an art treat!

This is me looking smug because we had arrived at the hotel! Yes, I brought costumes ;-)

We love the art of Michael DeMeng, so signed up for four days of working with him. Here are examples of his work (photos from his blog). He is represented at Blumfields Gallery in Boise.

We actually bought the "Babbage Yabba Birdhouse" and spent some time under Michael's direction making our own versions.

This is mine (awaiting a beak).

Below is my husband holding his creation.

Monday, September 30, 2013

Printmaking at Virginia City

I have entered an art contest for Wine Hill Hotel, called "Wine is Art". The winning art piece will be used for the wine bar and it's publicity materials. The artist also gets to exhibit in the hotel for a year, which makes it an attractive proposition, so I figured that I might give it a try.

I headed up to St Mary's Art Center to use their beautiful press.

Prior to arrival, I had scratched a drypoint etching into a plate and prepared it for press work.

 I also had a clear plate the same size to add a monotype.

The next stage was to add, then run some leaves on blank paper through the press on the inky plate.

The clear plate was then discarded and then the inked and now flat leaves were laid onto the drypoint plate. The drypoint was inked up using a heavy amount of brown, the leaves were almost completely black. This was done to add some visual weight to the activated edge of the print and to emphasize importance of the wine in the image.


Sunday, September 29, 2013

Recent Paintings

Recently I took part in an open studio event at Wildflower Village. There are pros and cons of open studio events, a big con for me, is that I am not always sure that the work is finished enough to show. One big plus, is that I don't have to frame the work, so it is no biggie to change up the work after seeing it in a gallery type setting.

All of the paintings below are oil paintings and easy to start reworking. The palette is much lighter than I usually use and I am still deciding whether to glaze deeper.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Fabulous Women

The art retreat starts tomorrow. Apart from clothes, I just have one final thing to work on and pack; an art donation to 'The Fabulous Women'. This is a nonprofit group that provides emotional and financial support for families facing various challenges.

I am adding the last touches to a Tree of Life image that I thought would be a suitable image for the cause.

The image is now finished and signed, ready to be framed.

All done and I found a small piece as an addition to the larger one.

I guess that just leaves packing the clothes!

Monday, September 23, 2013

Art Retreat Prep

I have a bunch of little tradigital art pieces made up for art retreat later this week. These will serve as art trades between the other artists.
Half my studio is scattered around the dining room floor and table, so packing needs to start before the kids get lost in the mess or someone does themselves an injury!
I'm SO excited to go, I know it will be a fun time.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Steampunk Ball

Last weekend was the big event of the High Desert Steam Ball and Medicine Show at Virginia City. We drove up Friday and attended an art show to kick off the festivities. Saturday morning we joined the Steampunk parade through the main street of Virginia City with many folk from Nevada and California. There were even some cool art cars such as the two behind me.

Here my husband and I are shown carrying the banner.
The old train in Virginia City takes a tour down to Gold Hill. We joined many steampunks from Sacramento on the journey that highlights much of the silver and gold mines from the days of the gold rush.

After checking out some of the vendors, we returned to the hotel for some tea and a change before heading out to see the Medicine Show. This was the highlight of the weekend for me and I thought the acts were quite splendid! The Ball was immediately after the show and the Grand Finale was a performance by Unwoman.

Airship privateers Admiral Lord Wormwood and Lady Jenny Wormwood, photo by Chris Stowell.