Wednesday, June 27, 2012

My Stu Dee O could have blown away.

Between our home in Texas, the mobile home on the farm and the one room cabin, where we plan to build our dream home,  I do a lot of moving of my art and craft supplies.  They go where I go and I go a lot!  Each home has an art space and the guys around the farm like to tease me about my "Stu Dee O", (studio).  I don't care about the teasing, only about finding a nice comfy, inspiring space to do my work.  

There was a wonderful old barn in our yard that My Farmer's kids had fixed up into the ultimate party place.  Well the kids parties have slowed down now that they have gotten older and the Party Barn became the junk and old furniture depot. I suggested that we should have our own party and invite all our friends so MF and I hauled out all the junk, cleaned  and washed the floors and windows and then we celebrated.  

When the celebrating was over and no one was looking I slowly moved  my easels, canvas and paints up stairs into the newly spic and span loft.  I set up in front of the huge patio door and had all the natural light I could use.  I had tons of room to spread out and I thought I had found a great place for a Stu Dee O.  There was one really annoying problem with painting up stairs in the loft of the barn in front of the patio door.  When the wind blow that window whistled, I mean it really made a racket.  I could hardly stand the noise so now not only was I limited to finding the time in a day or a week that I could spare to go paint but it also had to be a day with no wind.  Days with no wind out here on the Saskatchewan prairie are very few and far between and I stopped painting.....

I just can't stop being creative though and discovered zentangle drawings.  A pen and some paper is all I needed and I can handle that on the kitchen table or my computer desk.  Unfortunately, I didn't stop at just one pen, I had to get a whole bunch and then try some Tombow watercolor markers and some Copic alcohol ink pens, oh, and then I dug out my wonderful, old set of Prismacolor watercolor pencils.  I took some art classes and needed more stuff, like pan pastels, Inktense pencils, Peerless watercolors and a whole bunch of inks in spray bottles.  I out grew the computer desk but couldn't stand going back out to the barn again with all that noise so I set up my new
Stu Dee O inside our little home and dreamed of the space I was going to have once we build our new house.

               Yesterday there were 8 confirmed tornadoes in southern Saskatchewan, where we live.

I don't believe it was a tornado that hit here but it sure scared the crap out of me.   The wind did a lot of damage, though not near as bad as it could have been.  What it did do was blow the patio door in the loft of the barn in and glass shattered all over the place. The wind also peeled off the barn's tin roof and blew out the other barn windows.  Our yard's a real mess but if I had left my Stu Dee O set up in the barn loft I would have lost all my pens, paints and drawings.

                                               My farmer, me and all my art supplies are safe.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Bazaart is over and now it's time for summer

I have been preparing for Bazaart,  the huge outdoor Art show at the MacKenzie Art Gallery in Regina, Saskatchewan, since early January.

I am not new to Art and Craft shows, I have been selling my creations since the mid 80's and have tons of experience setting up and tearing down booths, displaying my work to it's best advantage and helping customers.  I love to talk to the other artists and to the people that are interested in learning more about my work. They all inspire me to keep creating art.

What I am new to is "Outdoor" art shows.  Outdoors in Regina, Saskatchewan means wind, wind and more wind. 

Last year at Bazaart the weather was so terrible that I could hear pottery and stained glass smashing to the ground in the booths around me.  It was awful and I was very glad that my acrylic paintings bounced and the mud could be wiped off with little or no lasting damage.  This year I was taking fewer acrylics and more watercolors so I made sure that every painting was sealed in a protective cover and I had super strong clips to attach them to my display boards.

The show was on Saturday.  The 3 days before the show it rained... they said Saturday was going to be sunny but then rain again on Sunday, Monday and Tuesday.  What were the chances that the weather man would actually get it right?  

Slim chances is what I though and I was not surprised when I woke up at extra early on Saturday morning  to rain.  I packed the truck in the rain, drove the hour to Regina in the rain and unloaded my tent and displays in the rain.  Then as I was setting up my tent the rain stopped, the clouds lifted and I had great hopes....until the wind started blowing.  

My darling daughter, Jen, came to help me for a few hours before she had to go to her real job and we had the tent up and were putting the displays together when the wind blew our tent right over.  It was upside down on the lawn beside our booth space.  Thank goodness we had no one on that side of us or we would have wiped out their entire display.  We got things back together, screwed everything to everything and weighed down all the corners.  Then when the art was all hung we assumed the position.  Jen holding down the 2 tent corners on the right and me holding down the 2 tent corners on the left.  

Let the show begin!

The crowds came, saw, enjoyed, bought and by 5 pm they were all gone. 

I now have fewer paintings but more money (to buy art supplies, of course). I talked to some interesting people and saw some strange ones, like the funky lady with grey hair, except where she dyed it purple and the guy in the skirt and the 5 ladies shopping together, all wearing sparkly, red boots.  It was a fantastic people watching day.  

I was packed up and had everything in the truck by 6, was home with a large, loaded pizza by 7:30 and in bed by 9:30.  

Five months of painting, one day of selling and it's all over for another year.  

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Do I have time for another class?

Well I did it, I said I wasn't going to, but I did anyway.

I signed up for Joanne Sharpe's new on line class.  This one is called Color Love.  I have already finished her other two, Letter Love and Artful Alphabets.  I just couldn't resist this one, I mean really, it's about Color and I love Color!

I may not manage to get all the lessons done, 25 of them for $35.00.  They are posted, Monday, Wednesday, & Friday for 5 weeks, but they will be up and available forever, so if summer gets busy I will just save them for a rainy or quiet day or when I need a little art fix.

The first lesson was all about getting familiar with your stash of coloring supplies.  I made color swatches of my paints, pens and inks.  I also did charts that I can hang on the wall in front of my work space.  That gives me a great visual aid to go to when I'm looking for just the right color to add to my art.

A bonus from this lesson is my crafting area got organized and I found paints that I had forgotten I had, pulled them out, tried them again and now have some "new again" favorites. One of them is Spanish Orange!  That is a color from Prismacolor and I have Spanish Orange in a watercolor pencil and a pencil crayon.  It is such a vibrant yellow and I know it will go great in many of my new pieces, but honestly, before I did the color swatch I never used it.

I look forward to many more "Ah ha" moments during these classes, they have all been great fun and I have no doubts in my mind that this one will be just as wonderful.