Saturday, June 30, 2012

Garden Gate

These photos are of a garden gate on a ranch here in Arizona.  It originally came from New Orleans, and rescued and moved after Katrina.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Traditional Invitation

This invitation for an event at The George Washington University was modeled after a handwritten note by Pres. George Washington.  It uses some of his personal shorthand and wording, and is written in Copperplate Script.
The hand addresses envelopes were done a little fancier, and hand delivered.

client: Joshua Levie with

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Wedding Vows

These vows were a gift for the bride and groom.  Lettered in a Copperplate script in black Sumi ink and blue gouache.  Congratulations Christine and Toby!

Monday, June 25, 2012

Birth Announcement

I love this photo the parents sent me for their baby's birth announcement.  The illustration is water colored cherry blossoms.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Spirit Flower

Another piece on the loss of a loved one.  Watercolor on Arches paper.
Text by B. Martin Stanton

Monday, June 18, 2012

First harvest of sugar-snap peas.  For Amity Parks fans, the little "carrot"  bowl is one of her early pieces.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Ring of Fire, Eclipse of the Sun

Eclipse photo by Michael Keller

The day of the eclipse my parents invited me on a drive to get closer to its center path. In their late eighties, they were excited to see the once-more-in-their-lifetime event, and planned on driving 5 hours to get the best Arizona view possible.  We didn't have sophisticated equipment for viewing, just a very low tech cardboard pinhole viewer.  But off we went on our adventure.

I had experienced a solar eclipse years ago in Montana.  Totality occurred on a February morning in 1979. My brother and friends and I had skipped classes and driven to a wildlife refuge to watch.  We wanted to see what the animals would think of night falling in mid day. It was spectacular. As darkness began to fall from west to east (!) the birds and animals became restless and noisy.  The deer formed a large herd that crashed aimlessly back and forth across the fields.  I could only stand still, silenced by the confusion such an event was causing in their minds.  At totality all was quiet. No more movement.  No sound.  Did the night creatures wake up again?  We couldn't tell.  We took turns looking at the hidden sun, passing around the binoculars. Then, with relief it seemed, the second dawn started.  This seemed not to be so traumatic for the animals, and the day began anew.

Now here I was again, waiting to see an oddity of the universe.  This time in the company of my parents who were every bit as curious and energized as my earlier college buddies had been.  We found a quiet field north of Wupatki, and watched the tiny projection through my pin hole.  The light lessened and the air grew cooler.  Sunset colors began to deepen. I found I could make a pinhole with my fingers and project the eclipse's progress on the white rocks scattered around.  I felt primal.
I walked out into the field and looked back at my parents, these people without whom I would have never existed.  They sat quietly on lawn chairs by their car, in visor and Tilley hat. Watching. These are the ones who fostered my intense interest in nature, who gave me the eyes to see beauty, the desire to know and understand the world and her people.  To go out of my way for something of value. I felt immensely grateful  to have been born to them, people so alive and kind and just.

Eclipse photo by Michael Keller

On the way home the moon was still moving across the face of the sun.  I watched the sun peek out from behind the vertical edge of the mountains as we drove along.  Still a crescent shape, it was not just one point of light but two, one above and one below, as if there were two tiny suns.  Then, when fully revealed, it became the familiar setting sun.  A very good day.

Thank you to Michael Keller and Karen Applequist  who we met in the field. They shared their welder's goggles with us (far better viewing than my cardboard) and their amazing photos.

Monday, June 11, 2012

Ceramic Pins

These majolica ceramic pins take their designs from ancient manuscripts and ceramics.  They were done with Amity Parks for a class we designed together.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Plein Air Painting for the Garden Tour

The Prescott Alta Vista Garden Club held their garden Tour yesterday, and invited me to paint in one of the tour gardens.  I painted in Chris's garden, a lovely "English style" garden with rock walkways, and vignettes of flowers growing in pots and natural beds among the rocks.
A tiny planter of petunias.

Toni's Geraniums.

Snap dragons
Gardeners are very nice people.  It was a lovely morning. 

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Painting for Charlotte

Little Charlotte was born into a world of loving family and friends.  
Below is a sign for her door commissioned by a couple friends 
very excited to welcome her into the world.
The sign was painted onto a pre-formed wooden plaque from Michaels'.  I first sanded and primed it, then painted a coat of gesso for the background.  The painting is all in acrylic.  Some of the flowers are wooden pieces painted and glued on.  I sprayed a varnish on at the end to protect it.
Detail of a butterfly.

Sunday, June 3, 2012