"Nature is what we know
Yet have not art to say
So impotent our vision is
to her simplicity."
- Emily Dickinson

Saturday, April 16, 2011

I just received an exciting letter from the Booth Western Art Museum in Cartersville, Georgia. I have had two works selected for inclusion in their first biennial Booth Artists Guild exhibition. The exhibit will run from May 17, 2011 through September 10, 2011 in the Borderlands Gallery of the museum. I am most pleased to be selected as the Booth is, in my opinion, one of the finest art museums in the southeast. Check out their website at www.boothmuseum.org and see for yourself what they are all about.

The work above is one of the selected pieces titled, Roots in Penland II. It's the right panel of a diptych. I photographed these exposed roots in Penland,NC in the Fall of 2009 when I was there to study printmaking and just got around to painting them. The piece is mixed media on panel with oil paint, handmade papers and dried botanicals.

Sunday, March 20, 2011


The Vernal Equinox 2011. Spring arrives officially at 7:21 this evening and I will celebrate with my annual ritual of balancing an egg on its end. This year, I am celebrating in another way as I am making my printmaking studio green.

Now, let me say that I love my painting studio and have no plans to make environment changes there. I love the smell of my traditional oil painting materials -- linseed oil, balsam, spike and really good turps. That's what my well ventilated studio smells like and that's what I think it should smell like. But my printmaking practices are all going green. I really think making art should be a pleasurable practice and I don't find acid, nasty smells and messy clean up all that pleasurable. After a class at Penland, I started printmaking with glass plates, using them for intaglio and lithograph plates with happy results. My inks were great quality, made with artist's pigments and burnt plate oil. Then I discovered Solarplate and I fell in love with the images that resulted, though still using the etching ink that required solvent for cleanup -- and there always was a mess to cleanup. My first Solarplates were exposed directly in the noonday sun last July and I now have a UV exposure unit in the studio that is much quicker, more efficient and quite consistent. I knew I had to find a better solution for the inks and I've settled on Akua water-based intaglio inks. At first, I was not completely satisfied with the results -- I like a little plate blush and the ink cleaned off the plate too much -- but now I'm adding a soy-based modifier to the ink and am getting a stiffer consistency resulting in a slight blush on the plate. Green is getting good results off my press!

Of course, the naturalist in me seems to dictate my subject matter just as it does for most of my paintings. I can see that presenting my little etchings will be as much fun as the printing process. I'm putting them in larger collage paintings and encaustic compositions -- and even matting some for the traditionalists. Naturalist Press is working in Sugar Hill, Georgia.

Friday, January 14, 2011


Last Autunm, I started a project dubbed, ArtSparks and I wrote about it herein. To my delight, my rock-star artist friend, Tiffani Taylor, sparked me back! I received two swatches of cotton sateen fabric with Tiffani's bird art and a bonus of two of her French postcards. My challenge now is to get creative about how to use the fabric -- in a quilt, a linen drawer sachet, laminated in glass, in a collage? We'll see.

I am most pleased that Tiffani was inspired to do some sparkin' with her artwork. Since I launched my project, I have been rewarded time and time again by the people I have given my artwork to. I believe that my little etchings have reached the right individuals whether the gift has come from my hand of by being regifted. While I would love to tell some of the stories about the path of the gifts, the stories are really personal and I want to keep them close to my heart. I know Tiffani will encounter old friends and make new ones with her project and that she will be rewarded time after time with her efforts as I have been. Perhaps there are other artists who would like to join us?