Friday, May 25, 2012

My art goes to the Big City

I went to New York to show my art
and it was really, really, really, really good.

The booth looked good 
and people responded.

Glory be. 
It happened again!

Every year I hold my breath. 

Now that I'm home, I am laughing about how many New York City icons
I snapped with my camera.

Here's a whirlwind trip around the City, spotting icons:

Hailing a cab with friends.

The predominant colors of yellow (as in cabs and street signals) and black (as in garbage bags piled up for collection.

Night-time in the city that never sleeps.
There are swankier digs but Mr. Wonderful and I loved the ice cream at the Shake Shack.

And on the theme of eating, another New York icon is the food carts.
This I truly love.

Do not ask if I really eat here. 
I definitely do!

The ones in Central Park are so scenic...

And Central Park itself is iconic at every turn.

You could get a crick in your neck looking up. But how could you resist?

Better balance it by loving the manhole covers and other wonders at your feet.

Or notice the sprinklers on buildings everywhere. 
Is it just me or do they look like faces? 

I am sincerely considering bringing a pair of red-hot-mama lips cut out and ready to tape in place next year. 

Doormen are iconic New York.
Street vendors.

Ditto Radio City Music Hall, Rockefeller Center and Times Square.

And in the end, after the crowds and noise and excitement...

home again in one's own little nest.
What a contrast.

Friday, May 18, 2012

New York, New York

It was the blessing of an extra day in New York, planned for nothing but play.

A day for cycling through Central Park...

... for playing tourist with friends.

Street music.

Paths to adventure.

And the Royal Copenhagen Boys' Choir... they sang with all their hearts and brought us a few steps closer to heaven.

Bright and early, first thing in the morning,
I'll hang the show.

Art all over the place.

The big art show where licensing artists unveil their newest work for manufacturers to select images for everything from paper cups to fabric to tableware.

Exciting... but scary.

I'll take you there with me in a day or two.

Hope and a knot in the pit of the stomach.
Oh, you simply have to love New York!

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Feeling blue

What a gentle shade blue can be.
Or dramatic.

Falling in love with blue again...

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Seeds of the creative life

Early morning in the farmland, big fields and bigger skies.

Cycling out to deliver warm muffins for a surprise...

Back past fields newly planted

clucking chickens

the call of a cow whose eyes are the most liquid brown I've ever seen.

Past leaves that amazing shade you only see in springtime.

The familiar clink of the gate,
and into our own garden,
remembering to notice the blessings,
not the weeds.

Oh, the beauty of a morning in May!

The simple pleasures of light and color and life full and running over!

There's broccoli and lettuce and herbs.
And a healthy crop of weeds.

Blue skies above

Rich dirt at our feet

and all the glories in between

And suddenly I'm struck with inspiration.

Never mind next week's show in New York.
Never mind tonight's dinner for friends.
Never mind the long to do list, much of it marked "urgent."

The creative lightning bolt must be pursued.

Out come the simplest of art things.
And soon I am sketching all around the garden.

Hours pass.

Then back indoors for inks and nibs, scissors and various papers.
Under the cherry tree there is a wild mess.

But that is the creative process.

No matter how often it happens, every single time it's like magic.

Light. Color. Magic.

And a sigh of contentment.

Is it like this at your home, too?

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Low tech letterpress

In the thick of preparing for  a New York show, technology decided it didn't like me.
The main computer died spectacularly, and the phone, printer, oven, iPod and even my camera went haywire as well!

What's a girl to do?

Embrace it! 
Go low tech.

I pulled the type for Ben's wedding invitation and changed fonts seven times!

The equipment in letterpress printing is wonderful. 
Even the names are an alphabet soup...

quoins and quoin keys

brasses and coppers

furniture of all sizes

em quads, en quads, wide spacing, galleys...

You check the kerning by hand, lock up the form in the chase and then do the make ready.

Then serious printing.

Oh, the clink and the rolling sounds of the press!
Music to the ears...

Back in 1905 this cast iron beauty was born, solid and steady. 
Every gear and wheel is precision.

Built to last, not like modern technology.

A long afternoon of printing (or weeding the garden or baking with the children or hiking) is just the thing when unplugging is what you crave.
Never mind the thousand things you SHOULD be doing.

Sometimes unplugging is absolutely necessary.