The Mechanic

OK, so Dick, the original owner of the overhauls as evidenced by his embroidered name over the pocket, was not a traditionally built woman. Let’s just say that I used a lot of artistic license in the rendering of that garment. But the rest of it went very quickly and in one sitting ….voila…

It has to dry for a few days and then I think a coat of varnish would bring it up to the same sheen as the metal.

And yes, I did use a coat of gesso first. I had done a rough sketch and taken some photos of me in the uniform in the mirror and then used the new puppet warp mode in Photoshop 5. That was fun. So I cut out the silhouette and traced it onto the hubcap and gessoed within that outline. It took perfectly and was dry in the time it took me to eat lunch.

Something different for the resume huh.

Now it’s time to baby proof and puppy proof the log cabin…Zoe and her new pal Hamish are arriving later tonight for a Thanksgiving that couldn’t be beat !

Many happy gobbles to you all,


Hitting the road…

You may remember that some time back I showed you a photo of a hubcap that had just arrived at the studio door. Well today’s the day that I begin working on that project.

Some months ago I received an email from a fellow by the name of  Ken Marquis inviting me to be a part of a recycling adventure that he had begun…Landfill Art. The basic idea is that he is sending out old hubcaps that have been rusting along our highways and letting artists have their way with them. There is a gallery of the ones returned so far on his website and he plans to publish a book showcasing all 1,041 and then choose 200 for a traveling show.

His selection of artists has an unusual scope as well…

“The goal of this project, is to include at least one professional artist from each of Pennsylvania’s sixty-seven (67) counties, at least one from each of the 50 US States, and to include a number of international artists.

In addition, I have always been a believer inthe 80/20 rule. My goal is to have 80% of the project be completed by professional artists and 20% fulfilled by nontraditional artists. These nontraditional artists are mentally and physically challenged (ie, down syndrome and autistic artists), politically oppressed artists (ie, Cubans), young artists (ie, 25 NYC third grade school children) and incarcerated artists.

So, today it’s my turn. I’ve been pondering this for months now and at first thought I’d do some form of teacup composition…aka roadside diner theme. But after I did a quick sketch I picked the hubcap up and looked more closely…and saw my reflection. Shazam….new idea. Waded through the mounds of leaves to the old studio, now the prop room, and brought down the old gas station mechanic’s uniform that hangs there.

A fun little side trip was discovering the trail of stink bugs that followed me back into the studio….and right back out onto the porch where I dug dozens of them out from each of the many pockets …ugh.

I also found an old cap with a Shell logo on it that I forgot was up there…and an old pair of lock pliers…

So, now I’m thinking of painting the reflection of a mechanic fixing to put this shiny sphere back on the good old chevy.

Not sure if I need to gesso first or just paint right on the metal. That will be today’s adventure…along with trying to fit into the overhauls !

I’ll keep ya posted,

and oh yeah…Finnegan wanted to say hi


Falling…into my easel chair.

Tis a beautiful morning in the studio…

There are still some maple trees holding on to the last of their glowing yellow leaves and the sunrise was a stunner with every shade of red clinging to the edges of the clouds. The light is strong and the air is crystal clear. My lungs have followed suit and yesterday’s reaction to the flu shot is a whispered memory. Finnegan had a good romp in the leaves with her bucket and is snoring peacefully at my side.

In the words of Monty Python… I feel much better. I feel Happy !

Just thought I’d share…

On the bluff…

I meant to post some pics from our time on the bluff as soon as we got home. Well now it’s been over two weeks and I’ve got a tiny little breathing room so without further ado…

We saw more almost every sunrise, and every single sunset…spent the first two weeks knitting and reading and finishing a sweater while watching dancing with the stars with Ted…dinners with friends…many walks on the beach  and around the meadows with Finnegan…spent the last week holding new grandbaby Zoe and teaching her to play Pinochle and boccie and what it feels like to have dog whiskers on her face and watching the reflection of her melt-your-heart smile in her mama and papa’s eyes.

I don’t know about you other artists but my creative channel seems to never sleep. The goal was to relax and enjoy the vineyard’s healing solace and shut down the side of the brain that takes everything in as a painting reference. All in all…I sorta did.

And here’s the proof…

Night Games…

So this morning…

I was taking the first look at the newest addition to the studio library,  STAR WARS Art: Visions published by Abrams, (the cheap version). It’s a stellar collection of Star Wars inspired art by contemporary artists.

And it occurred to me that I had done a Star Wars painting too…

Night Games…It’s currently up at the Granary Gallery

Here’s a closer look.

While it wasn’t commissioned by George Lucas, that little McDonald’s Toy version of Yoda has been a constant muse since the very early days of the saga and sits ever vigilant by my easel watching… and whispering…

Kudos to the artists whose work fills the new book…I’ll enjoy dipping into that this winter…

and may the force be with you.


4 Women Paint

It’s a pleasure to be in the company of these three strong and seasoned artists for this upcoming show. And it’s in our backyard so those of you who live nearby can hopefully join us for the festivities. The show opens this weekend with two receptions, Saturday from 5-7 and Sunday from 2-4. The next weekend, November 21st at 2pm there will be a panel discussion with all 4 artists and the weekend after that, November 28th a gallery walk, touring the show with the artists.

I’ve got a trailer full of originals packed for delivery and for this show I’ll also have studio prints for sale.

The show is at the York Art Association, 220 S. Marshall St. York, PA 17402  –  717 755-0028.

I hope to see you there !

Follansbee’s DVD !!!!!

Now THIS is something to stand up and cheer about. My friend Peter, who is already a rock star in the woodworking world…and the most famous 17th Century Joiner in the world…has a video out wherein he demonstrates 17th Century New England Carving.

I haven’t even seen it yet and I know it is a must see…must have for anyone that puts tool to wood.

It is available on the Lie-Nielsen website right now… Order DVD

Spread the word far and wide to all your woodworking pals … it’s a the best stocking gift going !

Knitting news…

Ahhhh voting day. They pulled a fast one on me this morning and moved the polls across the street. The only thing in the firehall was…fire trucks. And 8am in Strinestown is not exactly bustling with passersby to ask where the election day excitement was happening. I saw a sign at the entrance to the Brethren church parking lot and my blood pressure spiked. Getting my separation of church and state speech revved up I drove in only to find the tiny Strinestown Community Center bricked onto the back of the church hall. Still a little close for my comfort but I did my duty and was #84 in our community to vote. The day is young …your turn.Now to the real blog news…

Before I left for the show in July I stuck a post-it up on my computer with a list of things to “buy” after we came home, IF we had a good show. I had to wait until September to start crossing things off because I put them in order of need not want. But today I got word that one of those items…which was in both categories…has come on the market.

Beth Brown Reinsel’s new DVD Knitting Ganseys is now available !!!

And I just sat down last night to start a guage with the new yarn that I spun all summer…to make a gansey with !

If  you know of Beth already you were certainly in line clicking that buy button before me. If you haven’t run across her yet please at least give yourself the treat of checking out her website and blog. Beth is a knitter’s knitter. She pays the kind of attention to detail in her patterns that I do in my paintings. She makes the fine tuned techniques easy to understand and her joy of all things knitted is boundless and contagious.

Here’s a link to her website…sit down with a cup of tea and enjoy…