Monday, December 31, 2012

Chow Down: Chicken-Quinoa Burgers via Bev Cooks.

These sound oh-so tasty.  I love roasted sweet potatoes too, so this would be my perfect meal.  
Image and Recipe via Bev Cooks that I'd saved to Pinterest.
PS--Her blog has lots of wonderful looking recipes.

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Liebster Award.

I was nominated this week by two lovely blogs to receive the Liebster Award.  What a great way to wrap up my fantastic 2012 year.  A kind thank you to Kim Wagner Designs and Flowerland, I'm honored. 

What is the Liebster Award?  I'll tell you:

The Liebster Award's origins are pretty much a mystery. Bloggers nominate other bloggers that have 200 or less followers. “Liebster” is German for “favorite,” so this is kind of like the “favorite blog award.” It's basically a "Hey, that's a sweet little blog you've got there. Here's an award!" You can't just accept the award. You have to play by the (ever changing) rules and pay it forward. Then you can put the award on your blog for all to see. 

Rules of the Liebster Award: 

1. List 11 random facts about yourself 
2. Answer the 11 questions given to you
3. Ask 11 new questions for the bloggers you nominate for the award
4. Choose 11 bloggers with 200 or less followers to nominate
5. Go to each bloggers page and let them know about the award
6. Thank the person who nominated you and link back to their blog

11 Random Facts About Me:
  1. I feel as if I should've been born in the early 1900s or before.
  2. I have called my daughter 'Hoot' since she was born, but honestly can't remember what originally brought on the nickname.
  3. A spring morning when it has rained the night before is the most fantastic thing to me.
  4. I have trained numerous cattle to be broke to ride like horses and even had a couple that would bow.
  5. Books, music, and movies can vastly affect my mood, (sad songs can make me sad, feel good movies can make me feel I can take on the world, etc.).
  6. I refuse to drive in snow or icy conditions.
  7. I have an annoying issue of not being able to make intelligent sounding sentences when I'm nervous.  I know what I'd like to say, but the words elude me when I go to speak.
  8. I'm interested in almost every subject you can think of.
  9. I would've stayed in college forever if I could've.
  10. I love all genres of music from classical to rock to some rap to folk to jazz to swing.
  11. I can't dance, but I love to dance around the house when I'm alone--I look a bit simple, but I enjoy myself.
My Questions from Kim:

1. If you could posses any talent what would it be?
To be in multiple places at once.  I have so much I'd like to get done in a day, but never seem to have the time.
2. What is your favorite place in the whole world?
I truly love our little farm, and it is probably my favorite place.  The state of Texas is a very close second.
3. What is your favorite season and why?
Spring.  Growing up on my Grandpa's farm that was always such a fun time.  Lots of baby livestock of various kinds, the catalpa trees blooming, etc.  Now it's all recreated on my farm for my daughter to enjoy.
4. Do you speak any foreign languages? Which ones?
I speak just a skosh of Spanish because of high school, but I'd like to learn one.
5. Do you play any instruments?
I own a banjo, but can't play.  I can play simple tunes on the piano, but nothing major.  Another thing I'd like to learn.
6. If you could time-travel to any year in the past or future what year would you travel to and why?
Um, I'd say 1920.  Just a very interesting time period to me.  I enjoy photographs from that time very much.
7. Do you have a mentor or person you most admire? If so, who?
I have a lot of artists that I admire greatly.  Leah Giberson has been kind enough to give me some pointers, and Charlotte of Painting Well has become a art-linked friend as well.
8. Coffee or Tea?
I drink Green Tea with Honey every morning.  Never liked coffee much.
9. If you could transform into an animal which animal would you like to be?
I'd say a little song sparrow.  It would be a nice life to sing pretty songs and fly around in the sky.
10. What is your favorite holiday?
My favorite holiday is New Years--I know that's technically not a holiday per se, but to me it's a fresh start and I always set tons of goals that I strive to achieve during the following year.  It's a fun, clean slate.
11. What is the best museum you've ever visited?
The Buckhorn Museum in San Antonio, Texas.  My husband and I went there while we were on our honeymoon.  It's filled with atypical taxidermy mounts, and cowboy memorabilia.  I found it incredibly interesting.

My Questions from Flowerland:

1-What is your zodiac sign?
2-If you have to go on a desert island and to take with you just three things, what would you take?
I'd have to say my kid, my husband, and a cache of heirloom seeds.  I think we'd get along just fine.
3-Do you smoke?
4-Your favorite food?
Nachos with black beans, spinach, cheese, salsa and guacamole.
5-Your favorite super hero? Why?
I like the Iron Man movies, so I'll say him.
6-Have you a lucky number? Which is it?
Number 4, it's the day I was born, and it's always been pretty lucky for me.
7-Sea or mountain?
I'll say sea, but I only stay on the beach--I don't like open water.
8-Your favorite animal?
Cattle.  They have tons of personality, and I've had some great steers as pets growing up.
9-Are you a fashion victim?
Oh yes, I wear the same jeans, boots, tank, and 'old man-snap up shirt' almost daily.  I'd like to be fashionable though, and I hope to change things up a bit in the coming year.
10-Have you a recurring dream?
I often dream about the farm where I grew up.  Usually there are tons of horses there and I spend the whole dream walking amongst them and riding them and it's boring but definitely a great dream.
11-What is your favorite transport?
I loved my first truck I had, I wish I still had a truck like him.  He was a breeze to drive, big, and I felt all tough when I drove him.  Tons of miles were spent behind the wheel exploring the backroads with my camera.

11 Winners I've Chosen:

  1. What is one of your goals for 2013?
  2. What was your favorite memory of 2012?
  3. What is your favorite song?
  4. If you had a million dollars to spend, what would be the first thing you'd buy?
  5. What is your most defining quality or characteristic?
  6. What is your favorite time of day?
  7. Do you have any pets?
  8. Favorite movie?
  9. Who is your artistic hero?
  10. Favorite state/country/place you've been?
  11. Favorite color?
This was fun, I hope you enjoy it too.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Interiors I Dream About: Bold Walls of Art.

via {this is glamorous}--from Elle Decoration, UK Edition October 2007.
Photographer--James Merrell
The whole post has amazing artwalls--this one was a favorite because of the wallpaper.

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Leftover Paint.

After my Illustration Friday painting was finished I had a bit of paint left.  Started doodling, and this is part of the page.  I thought he was rather pretty for a loose sketch.  Just wanted to share.  I need to doodle more often, that is going to be one of my New Year's Resolutions for the coming year.  Lots of practice and we'll see where I'm at by 2014.

IF: Snow

My submission for Illustration Friday's prompt "Snow."
Available for sale here.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Obsessing: Printmaking.

I was lucky enough to take a semester of printmaking in college--over five years ago now, yeesh.  I loved the etching process, but there were a lot of other printmaking methods (monotypes, screenprinting, linocut, etc.) that we didn't get to try out.  All of a sudden, I'm wholly engrossed by the urge to get back into printmaking. 

Goldfish Test Print by yours truly from my college days.
This image is what really sparked the jump back in:
7 1/2" X 7" MONOTYPE, 2010
Something about the colors, and the detail in the trees, and especially the fact that it was a monotype just sucked me right in.  I looked at every image in her portfolio.  I wanted to go and build myself a press and cut some pieces of plexiglass and just never stop making art.

I then went on Flickr and searched for monotype and printmaking.  I found artists Jane Beharrell, Bonnie Murray, Andrea Starkey, and was even more inspired to want to delve into printmaking.

I've got a large machine press down at the barn, and there are plans to turn it into a printing press.  Those plans are about to be pushed to the front burner, because I'm about to burst with all the ideas I have in my head.  Sigh.  Here's hoping I get to play with some printmaking tools soon.  I want to make tons of monotypes, try my hand at woodcut block prints and linocutting, and perhaps a screenprint or two. 

Saturday, December 8, 2012

I'd Wear That: Trench Coat.

Via Burberry.
Mind you, I don't want a coat that costs more than my current truck is worth.  I do like this overall outfit though.  Simple tee with jeans but dressed up with the trench coat--that's doable.

Blog Envy: Black*Eiffel.


Tuesday, December 4, 2012

IF: Stretch.

My submission for Illustration Friday's prompt:  Stretch.
I thought of fish stories, and how the truth is usually stretched a bit.
Quick study, white acrylic paint and India ink on standard playing card.

Artistic Moment Of The Week: Trees.

Unidentified Trees, 1922.  Via The Field Museum Library on Flickr.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Chow Down: Skinny Taste's Slow Cooked Sweet Barbacoa Pork.

Via Skinny Taste.

Artist Interview: Rinske Dekker.

Today's interview is with an artist I've admired from afar for quite a long while:  Rinske Dekker.  What first caught my eye was her unique landscapes which are simplified and amped up with unexpected pattern and color.  They make my heart swoon.  She lives in Amsterdam, and has an etsy shop called rins.  I hope you enjoy her work as much as I do.  Now, let's get to know her better, shall we?

1. Were you always an art kid, or did you stumble upon it later in life?

Well, I always loved art, I took art classes at high school and attended art school. After that I taught some classes, worked in an art supplies store, did commissions and free work but never really found ‘my’ subject. My passion if you will. It wasn’t until I discovered Yoshitomo Nara’s art, pop surrealism, or low brow, the designer toy world and especially the artists I found through Flickr (the indie art community) that I felt connected. A whole new world opened for me! All those artists made things which were cute and funny and weird and eye-candy. They put the subjects smack in the middle! At art school back then, we were told not to do these things Loved it! Everything fell in place. My love for comic books, animations, fantasy, sci-fi, vintage portrait photographs, patterns, geometric forms etc.


2. What style of art is your favorite and why?

Any art that is imaginative, has beautiful colours, surreal, funny, narrative and where you can see the craftsmanship, I love the imagery and imagination and wonderful technique of the pop surrealists or Lowbrow but I also like the more graphic arts, as you can see in street art, illustration, graphic design, comic books, collage and folk art. I just love, love it, when abstract, geometric forms are combined with a cool figurative image, pref. something anthropomorphic. I have a thing for animals with human characteristics and vice versa.

The Lucky Doll.
3. What do you use for inspiration, or how do you generate ideas?

Sketching, and working on a piece always give me ideas for a next one. And seeing work by other artists always inspire me. I browse through a lot of Flickr, Etsy, blogs like Hi-Fructose, Juxtapoz, The Jealous Curator, Arrested Motion, etc. Also, my old little laptop is cramped with inspirational images I found on the web, in books or my own photographs and in our house there are a lot of beautiful books, figurines, vintage photos, old tins etc. I only have to look around and I am inspired by a beautiful colour combination or a cool pattern.

Bronze and Blue.

4. Walk us through your creative process from idea to finished project.

Most of the times, it starts with a colour combination I have in my head. Other times a face or an outfit on a vintage photo strikes me. I then think of how to translate that in my work. I work on a bunch of tiny canvases and pieces of found wood at the same time. I shuffle them around a lot, make different combinations. It allows me to experiment, to put a leftover colour from my palette on another piece and to come up with solutions for works that are lying there for a longer time. The disadvantage of that is that it can sometimes take ages before I finish a piece because I rather work on something else. The advantage is that if I do finish work, I finish a batch. I also make little graphite drawings and, lately, painted clay pendants and brooches the same way, in batches. So there are always a lot of unfinished works lying around in that tiny studio.

The Rrrrr.

5. What is a typical day in your life?

I don’t have a work schedule. I just work when I feel like it. And that is normally all day and mostly nights. During my coffee and breakfast and very often hours after, I am browsing internet, looking at other art, (re)searching ideas while I sketch, write and doodle in my sketchbook. Then I go to my studio room and work there until I remember to also have some fresh air. Do some grocery shopping, cook, talk with my man, maybe watch some series or read and browse, sketch, paint again until I am off to bed. Which is very often very late. I do also have days where I see friends and family, go on bike rides, walk around in our beautiful city or a park. : )


6. What do you think draws you to other people's work?

Imagination, skills, and the use of colours.
When I feel; “Oh I wish I came up with that!”

Checkered Sky.

7. What are your interests/hobbies?

Looking at work of other artists : ) on blogs etc and offline in museums and galleries. Hanging out with friends, going on road trips (while photographing landscapes for new paintings), reading and watching films.

The Boy and the Accordian.

8. Is this your full time job, or do you have a job out-of-studio?

I worked for years in an art supplies store to pay the bills (and get a discount on art supplies…).

Oh Deer.
9. What is your favorite piece you've ever made and why?

That’s such a difficult question. I have some old(er) favorites but it’s mostly the last one I make. I can also be very happy when I see a bunch of them together. They work so well in collections, I think. It can make me feel like a child who sees all their Halloween candy together.

One Red Tree.

10. What advice would you give to an artist just starting out in the business world?

About the business part: I am not very good at that myself. I tend to stay too much in my bubble, being in my head, my studio, with my tiny paintings and be very anti social. But you have to show your work to the world and talk to people on and offline if you want to sell your work. So finding the balance there is probably a good advice. : )

I do know that you should only do what you love. An artist, I forgot who, said: ‘ immerse yourself in your art and art in general’. That’s very important I think, that way you get authenticity and people will see that in your work. 

Rinske's Studio Space.
 11. Describe your work space.

A small spare room in our apartment is turned into a tiny studio. Because I paint and draw real small nowadays, I don’t need much space. I do have a lot of stuff that needs room, though. A lot of art supplies, hundreds of postcards and vintage photographs, books, figurines etc.

Rinske With A Work In Progress.

12. Did you face any setbacks on your path to being an artist?

Yes, the ‘lack off self esteem moments’, other people, like some family members, who ‘just don’t understand why you are not having a proper job’ and money problems make it hard sometimes to keep the faith. Luckily I have a man who believes in me. : ) Plus, I experienced that once you have taken that step to become whatever you want to be, you can’t go back anymore, which is wonderful and scary at the same time.

Green Sky.

13. What milestones, goals, or achievements are you striving for right now?

Creating all those ideas I have in my head and my sketchbooks, exhibitions abroad, collaborations. Be more organized : )

Thanks so much for letting me interview you!! 
You can also find her on:
Her Website

Sunday, November 25, 2012

A Bit Of Artist Doubt Overwhelming Me.

Cattle at Huddard-Kivett farm, north of Martinsville by Frank M. Hohenberger, 1927. via.

I'm not sure what is bringing this on.  My camera is broken at the moment, so perhaps it's the fact that I haven't gotten to go out and take pictures for a bit.  Perhaps it's the fact that my shops have been a little quiet lately.  Perhaps it's because winter is setting in around here, and it's really not my favorite time of year.  Whatever it is, I'm a bit overcome with this sense of "Holy cow, am I really good enough to match wits with the likes of the other artists out there?  Am I worthy of calling myself an artist?"  I am sure this feeling will pass without much of a concern, but it is an annoying, gnawing feeling at the present.  I know I'm not alone, I know a lot of artists have this feeling come over them sometimes.  Just wish I could shake it.  I do believe I'll go run about the house dancing to some music with Hoot and that may help, if not it most definitely can't hurt either.

On a side note, I'm still swooning over the entire Frank M. Hohenberger Collection, if you couldn't tell.

I'd Wear That.

Via Pinterest/Boden USA.

Words: Katharine Riggs.

Via Poetry Magazine on

Playlist: No. 2--Don't Give Up On Me Yet.

Cover Art via Flickr (US National Archives--Photograph of Bess Wallace, 06/1906).
Listen or via Tumblr.