Tuesday, August 28, 2012

The Cicada

The sound of a summer evening in the South - the song of the cicada.  It's a wonderful song that sings many a Southerner to sleep at night.  You would not believe how loud they are.  Their song is falling silent now as summer draws to a close.  You can still hear one or two here and there on a warm night.  This one had already gone to the great forest in the sky, unfortunately.  They are so perfectly camouflaged that it is nearly impossible to see them when they are  perched in a tree singing their little hearts out.  I love these bugs.  They sound like home to me.  Warm, humid nights.  Frogs singing.  Crickets chirping.  And the star of the show is definitely this so-ugly-it's-cute cicada and its wonderful high pitched undulating song.  Goodnight sweet cicada.  Sweet dreams.  See you next summer.

Saturday, August 25, 2012


Wonderlands Woods is undergoing a subtle change.  The forest is still lush and mostly still green, but if you look closely, you will see it.  A brightly hued leaf here and there, a flush of gold and purple wildflowers.  In some cases, there will be a bright little patch of scarlet and gold leaves right in the middle of the green ones - and on the same tree!  Do you suppose the trees are as anxious as I am for autumn to get here?  They are like young ladies who can't wait to put on their beautiful new gowns for the ball.

Thanks for stopping by.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Feelin' Spooky!!

Hello, friends!  I've been visiting great blogs and flipping through magazines looking at all the terrific Halloween arts and crafts that are coming out.  It's got me in the mood to make something spooky!  This is a little felt pumpkin head I made last autumn.  I wanted to make a doll, but errrrr.....let's just say I had trouble with the body.  I've been using him as a pincushion ever since.  Poor tortured soul.  But he doesn't look like he minds too much, does he?  He was inspired by this photo I saw in a magazine...

Aren't they cute?  Spooky, but sweet.  That's what I like.  I'm not a guts and gore kinda girl.  I just think these characters are adorable, and I'm going to try again to make a body similar to this for my little friend.  I've also pulled out an old papier mache' body I made last year and sculpted a head for it....again.  I've made two previous ones, but I think I tried for too much detail and they cracked, the ears fell off....it wasn't pretty.  So, this time, I tried to go a bit simpler and I'm drying the head inside a loose plastic bag, so maybe that will help reduce the shrinkage and the cracking.

At this stage, he is more creepy than cute!  But, hopefully when he dries and I can paint him a face, he will be a bit more presentable.  I could call him See No Evil, Hear No Evil, and Speak No Evil, but that just seems wrong.  What kind of spooky fun have you been up to?

P.S.  I could really use some advice on making a doll body for my friend's head.  If you know of any good tutorials on-line somewhere, would you please let me know?  Thanks!

Monday, August 13, 2012

Black-Eyed Susan: A Portrait in Textiles

A few weeks ago I made this post about these wonderful little stalwart flowers and the textile portrait they inspired.  Well, here it is all finished!  I know it is imperfect and has some frayed edges, but hey, so do I. 

The flowers are nearly all gone, and the plants are bedraggled and shriveled.  They finally succumbed, but I have this little portrait to remind me of their beauty and spirit.  Hope you like it.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Variations on a Theme

Sometimes all it takes is a simple suggestion to get things rolling again.  As I've mentioned before, summer is not my favorite season.  The oppressive heat and humidity seem to drain the creative life right out of me, and I have been struggling the past month in that respect.  So, my friend Emily politely suggested that I paint a little something for her newly remodeled guest bedroom.  She gave me some hints about color and theme, and away I went!  I had one idea pop into my head while washing the dishes of all things, and from there a whole series of little paintings was born. 

I sat down with a dozen or so liitle squares of craft paper and just started drawing different variations of the original idea.  Before I knew it, I had 14 different designs.  Some of them I like very much.  Others - not so much.  Some of them I didn't even finish painting because I didn't like the direction they were going.   I painted them all according to the color suggestions Emily gave me, but I could vary this series endlessly with different color combinations.

I've been planning to open an Etsy shop for almost a year now, and I was thinking I could develop a series of paintings from these little sketches to get me started.  You could help me out by letting me know which ones you like best.  That will give me an idea of what direction to take them.  I took a photo of all of them together and numbered them so you can easily vote for your favorite.  Even if you're not a fan of abstract art, just let me know which ones catch your eye the most.  You can vote for more than one!

Have a look and see what you think.