Saturday, April 28, 2007

Paper towel

Another collage-in-progress using a palette of black, white, brown and beige. I got to this stage and then ran into a major block. Often it's taken years before I understand a piece enough to finish it, I hope this isn't the case.
Quote: There is a difference between invention and what comes from inside of a painter.
Edward Hopper

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Paper Towels

While picking up an outdoor ceiling fan, on sale at Home Depot, I purchased a roll of embossed Scott towels. I'm looking forward to experimenting with the textured towels.

I used Viva towels for the abstracts on the right. Both were created from a single towel that was painted with turquoise and two shades red. The top one is an experiment with paint scraping; only black and white were added. On the bottom one there is a combination of paint splatters, gold dots, stamped circles and random shapes torn from painted towels.

I'm in love with the versatility of paper towels! The paper, of course, will require sealing of some kind.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Paper Towel Play

It all started with blending colors on Viva paper towels! Once the paint dried each 4x6 piece took on a life of its own. Some wanted netting adhered to them while others wanted fusible web and some begged for both. All them shouted, "Drip and pour paint on us!" And thus some abstracts were created.

I spent an hour painting paper towels last night and plan to experiment creating abstracts with them; starting with the basics of using simple shapes and a rather monochromatic palette.

Quote to memorize!
Remember to forget all those unpleasant things that are so easy to remember.
Sally Huss

Monday, April 16, 2007

Kangaroo Paw

There are three Kangaroo Paw plants in the garden and while the red blooms are wonderful I almost prefer them when they start to die and begin to look even more other-worldly than they normally do. Without the spiky red blooms the plant isn't very exciting. I tried growing them up north; all I got for my effort was one tiny spike that lasted about 3 days. These have been in bloom for two weeks; they seem to thrive in the warm weather.

After an hour of playing with various shots I opted for the black-and-white version. This image reminds me of a vintage photograph. The background is painted paper towel. I've been slapping paint onto paper towels in an attempt to come up with something abstract to use for a postcard exchange. I couldn't understand the current hoopla about painting paper towels but I'm beginning to understand it. In fact, painting paper towels can be quite addictive.

Friday, April 13, 2007

Library Card

Some things are too cool for words! Create your own library card or notes at:
What are the numbers? My birthday and the year Stacy was born!

Some days are worth getting out of bed for and this is one of them. The desert is at her best when the sky is clear and the mountains aren't enshrouded in haze. The brown barren mountains can be lovely with shadows on them either early in the morning or late in the day. Yesterday's windstorm and light rain cleaned up the atmosphere and gifted us with an above average day; rare as of late. I have all of the windows open to air out the stuffy house after days of running the AC.

I'd given up growing roses during my 30 years on the Monterey Peninsula so you can imagine my delight when I wandered around the newly planted garden early this morning and discovered that there were 3 blooms; one yellow and two red. I brought home a succulent today that the checker didn't want to handle. She thought it had a spider web on it and must be frightened of spiders. "Would you mind putting it in the bag?" she asked. I smiled. "The name is Cobweb, so what you're seeing is part of the plant." She shook her head and handed me a bag. I hope that I can get some close-ups of it; it is a visually exciting plant. I love photographing things in my garden so even though I'm still suffering the effects of putting in the yard I'm thrilled to be surrounded by plant life again. I can't imagine not having a garden and I finally have a private one. The house in Pacific Grove only had a front yard which at times drove me nuts. I would have enjoyed sitting outdoors more but it was too public. Happily, the front yard is taken care of by the HOA.

Quote: Life is not meant to be easy--wonderful yes,
but not easy.
Sally Huss

Wednesday, April 11, 2007


My cousin gave me some metal pieces she was no longer using; for the life of me I can't figure out why she'd give them away! I was thrilled to be on the receiving end of the sculptural pieces that are now residing in the backyard. This particular piece used to hold a glass vase that I immediately discarded. I cut down a coconut plant receptacle and slid it into the vacated vase space (try saying that fast!) and planted nasturtium seeds in some of the organic top soil left over from the flower bed. After a week a few leaves finally popped up.

We're having another epic windstorm; the second one in two weeks, and I'm sitting here biting my fingernails hoping that the plants and trees survive!

Quote: The only thing better than the nearness of flowers
is the closeness of friends.
Sally Huss

Tuesday, April 10, 2007


"As soon as you trust yourself,
you will know how to live."
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

I guess that I don't trust myself . . .

Saturday, April 07, 2007

I like to think of this time of year as one of renewal, so with that in mind I'm nourishing my soul with books that mean something to me. Most of which seem to be by Julia Cameron.

"We carry wisdom in our bodies. We carry memories and we carry, too, the medicine for what ails us. We can walk our way to sanity. We can walk our way to clarity. Baffled and confused, we can walk our way to knowing the 'next right step.'

In difficult times, many of us intuitively start walking. We may walk our way through divorce, a breakup, or job change. We may walk our way out of one identity and into another, newer and better-suited to us. Answers come to us while we walk--sometimes the answers come to use before the questions. We just get the itch to start walking and when we do, we then begin to get a sense of why."
Julia Cameron, Finding Water

I had hoped that I would spend more time walking once we moved to a gated community. I know longer felt safe walking the path next to the ocean, too many crimes committed and I didn't want to be a statistic. But I find that now I don't to see the same houses over-and-over nor do I want to be friendly when meeting strangers out for their walk or in their yards! Always a dilemma! I'm considering walking after dark when it's still warm out, but then mom and Stacy want to walk with me . . . Always the trio!!

The other dilemma is that I don't have a smidgen bit of desire to create anything! I've been down this path before and I imagine it's only temporary, but then perhaps a new direction is in the wings? What?

Monday, April 02, 2007

Six Months!!

We moved into our new house six months ago today! The last few weeks have been devoted to getting the backyard in and I've never been so thrilled to be able to say, PHEW!! What a workout! The two trees on the top left were delivered on March 23 and planted on the 25th.
Seven men took over the backyard for two days and I lost my bearings along the way and gave up when they stacked the brick retaining wall incorrectly! The photo on the left shows their idea of putting in a retaining wall! My friend and I spent March 28-30th correcting it and filling the flower bed with top soil. At least the crew of 7 did the drainage and drip system, though, I need to redo most of the placement for the drip . . . The top right photo is of my grandson, or I should say, Chief Gardener! The middle bottom photo is from the north end of the yard and left one is taken from under my shade structure/arbor.

Tip: click on the photos to for a larger version.