Saturday, December 22, 2012
So the shortest day came, and the year died,
And everywhere down the centuries of the snow-white world
Came people singing, dancing,
To drive the dark away.
They lighted candles in the winter trees;
They hung their homes with evergreen;
They burned beseeching fires all night long
To keep the year alive,
And when the new year's sunshine blazed awake
They shouted, revelling.
Through all the frosty ages you can hear them
Echoing behind us - Listen!!
All the long echoes sing the same delight,
This shortest day,
As promise wakens in the sleeping land:
They carol, feast, give thanks,
And dearly love their friends,
And hope for peace.
And so do we, here, now,
This year and every year.
- Susan Cooper, The Shortest Day
Thursday, December 20, 2012
Wednesday, December 12, 2012
"Our flaws, our imperfections motivate us to become pliable, moldable, and teachable. And like knots in wood, they give us our uniqueness and character. They help to bend or even break us to the point where we are able to recognize the needs of others and to help them."
From the book Hope Rising by Kim Meeder
Monday, December 10, 2012
Wednesday, December 5, 2012
Not that she didn't enjoy the holidays: but she always felt-and it was, perhaps, the measure of her peculiar happiness-a little relieved when they were over. Her normal life pleased her so well that she was half afraid to step out of its frame in case one day she should find herself unable to get back. The spell might break, the atmosphere be impossible to recapture. Mrs. Miniver by Jan Struther
Tuesday, December 4, 2012
"Ultimately, it doesn't matter to the world if you paint or dance or write. The world can probably get by without the product of your efforts. But that is not the point. The point is what the process of following your creative impulses will do for you. It is clearly about process. Love the work, love the process. Our fascination will pull our attention forward. That, in turn, will fascinate the viewer." Creative Authenticity by Ian Roberts
Monday, December 3, 2012
She reached her doorstep. The key turned sweetly in the lock. That was the kind of thing one remembered about a house: not the size of the rooms or the colour of the walls, but the feel of door-handles and light-switches, the shape and texture of the banister-rail under one's palm; minute tactual intimacies, whose resumption was the essence of coming home.
Excerpt from Mrs. Miniver by Jan Struther
Saturday, December 1, 2012
Here are two paintings that started off as photographs. The one of the ruins is the Old Sheldon Church off Highway 17 in South Carolina; pretty close to Beaufort. I've photographed it several times in different seasons. If you go anytime of the year, any season, take a container of potent bug repellant. The tiny mosquitos about carried me off last time! I was holding my camera with one hand and making flapping motions from head to foot with the other. It makes for some interesting photographs, that's for sure!
So for this technique, I took my original 4x6 color photograph,copied,and enlarged it onto gray watercolor paper. I then recolored it using watercolor pencils. The result is a finely executed watercolor painting. Since my drawing skills are pretty poor, this is a good way to let my photograph do the drawing for me.
The second painting is a watercolor using my image of a foggy morning in Virginia as a guide. The finished painting is a 5x8, so it's pretty small. I like to paint small so I can finish a painting in one quick sitting. I really don't have the patience to work on a piece for hours or days at a time. Instant gratification is the ticket for me!
I've tried many different techniques combining photography with painting which I'll share as the mood strikes. What different techniques have you tried, and were you happy with the results?
Monday, November 19, 2012
"Your art is to be the praise of something that you love." John Ruskin
Monday, November 12, 2012
Tuesday, November 6, 2012
Saturday, November 3, 2012
Friday, October 26, 2012
Thursday, October 25, 2012
Tuesday, October 16, 2012
Children lose their innocence piece by piece. The layers are carved away until our hearts have been exposed and polished into an unnatural gloss. We spend the rest of our lives trying to remember why we ever loved so passionately and how we dreamed so simply, before life chiseled us down
Sunday, October 14, 2012
Wednesday, September 26, 2012
Tuesday, September 18, 2012
The Peace of Wild Things
When despair for the world grows in me
and I wake in the night at the least sound
in fear of what my life and my children's lives may be,
I go and lie down where the wood drake
rests in his beauty on the water, and the great heron feeds.
I come into the peace of wild things
who do not tax their lives with forethought
of grief. I come into the presence of still water.
And I feel above me the day-blind stars
waiting with their light. For a time
I rest in the grace of the world, and am free.
— Wendell Berry
Saturday, September 15, 2012
I mentioned making Cheese Straws in a previous post, and several of you said you'd never heard of them. Here's the recipe from our church cookbook. I served them yesterday at my book group meeting.
Disclaimer: I didn't actually make these in the photo. Our Farmer's Market had them for sale, and I was on a time crunch this week, so I bought some. That's why they're in those squiggly shapes. I don't have the gadget needed to make them in this shape. When I make mine, I make round ones about the size of half dollars.
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1/2 cup plain flour
1/4 cup butter, softened
1/2 tsp. dry mustard
1/4 tsp. red pepper
1/4 tsp. paprika
1/4 tsp. salt
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Combine all ingredients. Roll into 1-inch balls, place on ungreased cookie sheet, and flatten. Bake for 8-12 minutes until lightly browned.
So what about it ya'll? Are Cheese Straws a 'Southern' thing?
Tuesday, September 11, 2012
A paragraph from Knowing God by J.I. Packer: "Godliness means responding to God's revelation in trust and obedience, faith and worship, prayer and praise, submission and service. Life must be seen and lived in the light of God's Word. This, and nothing else, is true religion."
Monday, September 10, 2012
I need advice. I've read somewhere about how to make grout black, other than mildew, between tiny hexagonal tiles. When we put this floor in with white grout, I didn't think about how it would look twenty-two years later. It's a dingy shade of tan. I've bleached it and tried all kinds of cleaners. It just won't come white again. So I want to make the grout black. Would a Sharpie permanent marker do the trick? Any ideas or suggestions?
Thursday, September 6, 2012
All the postcards are in from the swap mentioned here:http://artfulaspirations.blogspot.com/2012/07/fun-with-postcards.html
They came from all over the world. There were three photographs and three artworks. They also put their websites or blogs on the backs so I can contact them and see more of their work. I love exploring the art community and making new friends. This swap was a great idea!