Tuesday, March 29, 2016

The Tree of Life VABC print exchange

2nd Meeting 

VABC shop studio Saturday, April 16th at 5:00pm

What it is: A collection of prints created by participants and inspired by the concept of the Tree of Life. The Tree of Life is a global archetype focusing on the concept of a sacred tree. It is a symbol that is usually associated with hope, healing, stability, sustainability, and protection. Through history, it has occurred in many different cultures. 

Edition Goal: Enough prints to accommodate a final portfolio collection in a hardbound case for each participating member and a determined number of cases for donation to the VABC. 

Print Size: 11” x 14” 

Paper Type: Paper is the choice of the artist. 

Participation Fee: Members: $40.00
                               Non-members: $70.00 

Medium: Traditional” printing methods are
encouraged but the project is not exclusive of digital methods. Contemporary media can be used and is encouraged but be considerate. Methods and materials that compromise the collection as a whole will be excluded.

Please contact project manager, Lana Lambert for more information at lanalambertpress@gmail.com

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Crozet Artisan Depot

I got into a new local venue! Literally!  The Crozet Artisan Depot took me on as one of their new artisans and I am delighted to join them.  They are located in a fantastically quaint old train station in downtown Crozet, Virginia.  It is jam-packed with wonderful art of all kinds!  There are pieces to delight the senses and pamper the soul.  Naturally, some of them followed me home . . .

Below is a photo of my cards nestled amongst all the goodies.

I've got so many more to get printed but fresh off the presses are the stacks of boxed Thank You cards.  I have some singles for sale too.  Sometimes just one will do!

I was fortunate enough to score a set of Tuscan Ombre type from Wingnut Foundry.  It paired nicely with vintage dingbats from the VABC collection and the "money green" doesn't hurt either.  More on these guys later, but should you find yourself in need of some Thank You notes, now you know where to go!

I cannot impress enough how delightful the Crozet Artisan Depot selection is!  You can find paintings, prints, ceramics, baskets, wooden bowls, jewelry, stationery, books, candles, soap, knives, instruments, candy, preserves, . . . I mean the list goes on and on!

The staff is really great as well.  I met a luthier who makes some amazing instruments!  Marvin Rankin creates these beautiful masterpieces, but it doesn't end there.  Not only beautiful to look upon, in the right hands they create aural magic as well.

These two really stood out to me.  I've never seen an electric cigar box guitar.  He even has an amp under the display for a demonstration of the sound.  Stellar!  See more of his work here:  crozetartisandepot.com/#!marvinr/ckku

I had to come away with some goodies!  I picked up this gem by Emily Hancock.  The binding is delicately crafted and it was hard to pick from her selection because they all looked so tempting.  At last I chose this little beauty because the bright marble paper reminded me of an Easter egg shell.  I added the title at the top right on the front to personalize it just for me.  Check out Emily at www.stbrigidpress.net/

While perusing, I recognized this collection right away!  It's hard to miss the unmistakable precision and soul of Abbey Noelle's carefully rendered graphite animal portraits.  I recognized her work as she has framed with us at Creative Framing.  I've seen adorable little "Coffie the Fruit Bat" in person and the detail is crazy.  I bought one of her cards to remember him.  I know he hangs upside down but I like looking at his little face right side up!  You can find out more at:

I actually met the lovely Kerensa of Lux Aromatica when she had an opening this past 2nd Saturday.  I simply had to try some of her wares and boy, was I not disappointed!  I'm going back for more.  For now, I'm enjoying one of her Ice Mint soaps (mint soap is a weakness of mine!) and wonderfully fresh French Perfume candle.  I want to try Rare Earth and Kama Sutra next. You can see more at: 

Well, I better get back to cranking the press handle but stop on by the Crozet Artisan Depot to check out the fantastic collection of locally crafted treats!  Be warned, it's hard not to come away with something that you won't absolutely fall in love with!

Sunday, March 6, 2016

Turkey Quill

I was debating on wether or not to post this in my art blog or my hippy blog (ne'er the two shall mix?) but so much of this was about process that I decided the art blog would be more appropriate.

I have a feather collection.  People collect things for many different reasons and even in the realm of feather collecting, people do it for different reasons.  My reasons tend to lean on the religious side and since you guys are reading my art blog and not my hippy blog, I guess you'll just have to wait for an explanation!  At any rate, I made the recent discovery that my collection was not safe from little insects that destroy the feather follicles if given the opportunity.  Being a framer by trade I did not despair, I just simply got to work.

If I associate my collection with experiences, then I wanted the framing of it to be personal to me and not just a specimen case.

I started with my small turkey quill.  I had fallen in love with a Japanese arrow fletching pattern I have seen and wanted to use that geometrical influence.

 The tedious part begins with penciling out your lines on an acid free board.

A grid is first drawn and then the oblique lines are installed.

I knew I did not want a solid wall of pattern.  I was going to mount the quill in the middle so I picked out some of the blocks not to fill with pigment.  A handy tool at the top right is a rough thumbnail sketch.  It's kind of like a road map for where you generally want to end up with your design.  I also had my double mat ready nearby.  You can see at the top left that I chose an off white top mat and a soft gray under mat.  Since my frame and background were going to be bold, I wanted a lighter matting so the final presentation wouldn't be heavy.

Next came lining the pattern.  The pencil drawn lines are invaluable at this point.

I've grown to love my ruling pen for tasks like these and today it was earning its keep.

When I began to fill in the pattern, I liked the bold red color but realized halfway through that this pattern was going to end up dominating the presentation.  It would be hard to see the feather against all this.

Luckily, I had a scrap of beautiful japanese paper with bark and fiber inclusions.  It was an improvement that actually enhanced the look because the inclusions look like they were being swept up by the wind and my feather would feel right at home.

I mounted the quill and installed the mat on which I had written the turkey's scientific name.  I framed it in a bright red burl-wood frame by Bella called Tiny Cinnamon.  Now my little quill has a home that is beautiful, magical, and is safe from bugs, moisture, and UV light.  On top of that, it is hung near our bedroom so instead of laying on a shelf I get to wake up to it every morning and have a reminder of the magic alive in the world.