Wednesday, September 24, 2008

September Flora

Art and image copyrighted by Traci Donahue 2008

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

life is good when the task worth while

A million choices, or so it seems every time I work on a new theme. As I start to narrow down the number of ideas, other thoughts constantly flood my mind concerning each possibility I am carefully weighing.

It is definitely problem solving at its best, taking abstract and/or random thoughts and making something of them, making them tangible. It took forever for me to decide what I was going to do. I felt like I mulled this month's artwork over and over again before I finally settled on a direction.

Sunflowers were not my first choice. I arrived at this floral through a process of elimination from my choice of pattern. And to be honest, this particular pattern was also not my first choice.

My research for this piece began by looking through the pages of a large oversized book on the Quilt's of Gees Bend. If you have never seen these works of art I urge you to RUSH down to your local library or nearest bookstore and check them out. The quilts shown are beyond breathtaking! Even if you have no interest in fibers or fiber art, you can not help but be amazed by their patterns and color combinations. I always feel inspired by looking at them.

I started with full intentions of mimicking a Gee's Bend Quilt pattern, but fate stepped in and led me down another path. Several days before I began working on the piece, I happened to receive a retail catalog in the post. This particular catalog had a patterned pillow that I could not stop thinking about. From that moment, I knew I needed to follow my instincts and go with my own version of the pillow pattern. So, no matter how much I plan there are ALWAYS surprises along the way, where I change my mind or a opportunity presents itself, which I kind of like!

Using such a tall, leafy, repeat pattern also provided that perfect opportunity to incorporate the sunflowers as a believable flower that might appear on such gangly stalks. Again, I try to take the viewer through thoughts of what is real and what is pattern by blurring the line between the two halves.

Art and image copyrighted by Tracie Lyn Huskamp 2008

Monday, September 8, 2008

Forest Flora Fantasy

Here is my September offering to our challenge. It incorporates a leaf from one of my maple trees, twigs from a willow and recycled tin can and copper leaves.

I took a class, taught by Suzie, on playing with acrylics and that is how I painted my background. Using rubber stamps to stamp into gel medium and leaving wonderful impressions. I had already pressed and dried the leaf and then covered it in gel medium to make it more pliable. I cut and tied the twigs and then attached them to the canvas board and glued the heck out of them to make them stay. The "flower" is held together by small wires that are coming from the back and used as the stamens.


Art and image copyrighted by Z'anne Bakke 2008

Sunday, September 7, 2008


This month turned out to be more difficult than I ever imagined. I started off with an image of a praying mantis (one of my very favorite "bugs". I have fond memories from my childhood and my grandmother's garden surrounding these magical walking sticks of the insect family. Alas...the piece would just not materialize. I even wrote to Jan and told her I had put the piece in the corner facing the wall (like all little children who won't behave) and hoped for the best....but it was not to be. I then struck out to work with another favorite....the 17 year cicada but it too escaped my muse (I might add with a great passion) and I had all but given up. I was going to throw in the towel and spray myself down with bug spray and take another tact. THEN.....I looked at the calendar and realized that one of my favorite months was approaching. In October on Nantucket, the Monarch butterflies stop for a rest and to drink their fill of milk weed for their long journey south to Mexico to mate. I've had some amazing experiences standing on the beach at Miacomet Pond, which is surrounded by Golden Rod and Milk Weed, two of the Monarch's favorite foods. They are everywhere and they are so preoccupied with their quest for food and reproduction that they pay little mind to the few humans who come to watch. I've had as many as three of them land on me while observing (quietly I must add) their frenzy.

The moral of this story is not to force the work but let it flow. If it's not working, put it down, walk away and wait for your muse to find you and whisper in your ear. She will and then it's up to you to listen.

Art and image copyrighted 2008 by Bee Shay

Saturday, September 6, 2008


This piece came about from experimental "blob" printing with art paste.. After printing this shape on ledger paper, I cut out the human form. The background is gold foil and acrylic paint. I find the image of the large parasite clinging to the human form to be really humorous and not as scary as a picture of a "real" bug. Have I been reading too much science fiction?

(Posted for Judy Stack)

Art and image copyrighted 2008 by Judi Stack

Thursday, September 4, 2008


I keep being surprised at what emerges this past two months. These are very different from my usual work. It's more bold. Not as delicate as someone described my work . . . This one popped into my mind and it turned out nearly exactly as I had imagined, not usually how I work. I'm enjoying the process.

Sorry for the late post, had company over the last week and I'm about to give birth to a new web site. Feel like I should get a merit badge!


Art and image copyrighted 2008 by Suzie Wolfer

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

This Mosquito Was Caught...

When I was a college student during early 1970s, I had a summer job at Bergen County Mosquito Commission in Paramus, NJ. Sometimes I had to collect live mosquitos out in the meadowlands during early evenings and put them in the freezer. I did ten (10) detailed drawings of the mosquitoes selected from the collection by the supervisor for training purpose, and I kept one of them for my portfolio. A couple of weeks ago, I pulled that colored pencil drawing out of the portfolio case and decided that I would use the image for this artwork.
When I did the colored pencil drawing, I had to use a microscope to examine this mosquito in detail and for color reference. I think that I used Spectracolor pencils on heavy vellum. For the background, I took a photo of the stagnant part of a pond in the woods. This part is a perfect breeding place for mosquitos, and little fishes feed on them. The mosquito above is one of the most common species. There are over 1000 species of mosquitos in this world, and I believe that about 60 species exist in New Jersey if I remembered correctly. And only the females bite.

Art and image copyrighted 2008 by &rew Borloz

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Butterfly Palace by Cynthia Mooney

My suggestion for a monthly theme was butterflies, so of course I wanted to incorporate them somehow. Butterflies have been a part of my art work for many years & to me represent transformation and rebirth.

Art and image copyrighted 2008 by Cynthia Mooney