Saturday, April 19, 2008

This is Spring?

If you had looked out my front window yesterday (Friday), this is what you would have seen.

Yes, that is indeed snow. Snow! In the 3rd week of April!!! Above is my Frittilaria Persica and below is my Euphorbia Wolfenii.

My evergreen Clematis Armandii; this is the 3rd one I've planted in this spot. The first two were the "Apple Blossom" variety because I was determined to have pink flowers in this spot. A plan which failed dismally. When I finally gave in and planted the white flowering one it took off immediately.
And the camellia; this shrub was here when we moved in. It had been pruned into a near-perfect Dr. Seuss-like oval. Very odd, sort of fun, impossible for the likes of me to recreate... I used a flash because it reflects on the falling snow and the snowflakes show up really well - except in this picture. The flash did make this pink look like it was almost neon. It's really a much more old-fashioned pink than this.
And lastly, the Anemones, The Admiral, with their friends the Stipa, the Iris, and the Dandelions. That's the out of control Knifofia in the background.


I did manage to complete another row house for the swap yesterday. How sweet is that tiny compass? I got several when I went to that stamp convention thing last year and hadn't used any before this. It fit perfectly in the round indent on this mystery game piece (anyone know what game it goes to?) I think I may be getting obsessed with compasses - which, btw, I have never gotten to work properly! I like their symbolic connotations; A compass being a tool to help you find your way when you are lost. Don't you wish there was a compass for life sometimes?


Sunday, April 13, 2008

National Poetry Month

(A Spring Poem)
In honor of national poetry month I thought I'd share some poetry with you.

First, I read somewhere about a challenge to write a cinquain - a form of poetry - and create art to go with it. Um, yeah. I wrote the poem but didn't make the art. A cinquain is, in this case, a "didactic cinquain." Described on Wikipedia thusly:



"The proscriptions of this type of cinquain refer to word count, not syllables and stresses. Ordinarily:


the first line is a one-word title, the subject of the poem;
the second line is a pair of adjectives describing that title;
the third line is a three word phrase that gives more information about the subject;
the fourth line consists of four words describing feelings related to that subject;
and the fifth line is single word synonym or other reference for the subject from line one."



I wrote this almost two years ago and if I had to write it again, it would be exactly the same.




Daughter.

Loving adventure.

Beautiful, sweet, funny.

Dancing through my life.

Precious.


This next poem I wrote about a year and a half ago. I was watching Rexy do something (what???) and she got a priceless look on her face - that was gone a second later. I literally reached for my journal in that moment, and wrote this:


If My Eyes Were a Camera

If my eyes were a camera
I would take a picture of you
every minute
of every day.

So I could savor
the sight of you
and the light of you
in future times.

And remember
how you look
right
now.
*************************************************************************************************************Please stop by Poets Who Blog to discover great poets and share the love.
All content of this blog is copyrighted by Laurie Blau-Marshall unless stated otherwise. Please do not reproduce any part of this blog's contents without permission.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

An Award! And a Swap, a Stamp, and I'm published again!

Isn't that a beautiful award? The lovely and wonderful Kat gave me this award this morning! Now I must decide which 5 (yes, merely five) people to award it to whose art and blogging I find inspirational.

I was going to give you my reasons for picking these fabulous women, but I decided that their blogs and their art speak for themselves.

1. Pam Carriker

2. Suzan Buckner

3. Brandie Butcher-Isley

4. Judy Wilkenfeld

5. Gina Smith


If you are a recipient of this award, the following are the accompanying rules. (no pressure though - since they're not my rules I don't feel too attached to them!)

1. You have to pick 5 blogs that you consider deserve this award for their creativity, design, interesting material, and also contributes to the blogging community, no matter what language.
2. Each award has to have the name of the author and also a link to his/her blog to be visited by everyone.
3. Each award winner has to show the award and put the name and link to the blog that has given her/him the award itself.
4. The award winner and the one who has given the prize have to show the link of "Arte y Pico' blog, so everyone will know the origin of this award. (http://www.arteypico.blogspot.com/ )
5. To show these rules

***************************

Well I jinxed myself! I haven't listed a thing since my last post! I've also got about 200 emails that I haven't read - yipes. I have, however finished another piece for the Row House swap that I am in (Yes, I know I said I'd never do another swap - and yet here I am. But this sounded so fun!). I am including the house I made, below, for See It Say It Saturday in the swap, and now this one:



And...I can't stop! I made another stamp! Blame Michelle Ward and her Art Crusade #18! Pretty soon I'll be scoring rubber down on the street corner, jonesin' during PTA meetings (as soon as I start going to them), I'll get behind on reading my emails, my house will fall into ruin, laundry will pile up...Wait! Those last 3 things have already happened! Now, was that before or after Crusade #18...?



On this one I accidentally started carving out what was supposed to be the positive space, realized it partway in and tried to correct. Then my knife slipped about six times! Still, it's not too far off from the original sketch.


Lastly, I'm published again! This time it is my writing. Robin Olson Mayberry invited me to submit art, a short story, essay, or a poem to be included in her newest 'zine. I submitted two essays and a poem she ended up using the poem and an excerpt from one of the essays! The 'zine is available from her Etsy store here. Later this month I think I will post one of the essays in its entirety here. But for now, go get a 'zine!

Sunday, April 6, 2008



This just may be the most inventory I've ever had in my Etsy shop! Since I closed my eBay store I've been meaning to utilize Etsy more. This week I just started. Every piece of jewelry I posted this week is green. I thought it would make for a nice looking mini - and I think it does! I also revamped my banner. This is what it looks like now:

Does it look a little familiar? ;-D I liked the design so much I decided to use it here, too!

I managed to list something every day for four (5?) days in a row. My goal is to keep up that pace as long as I have inventory. Phew. That's a lot of listing...

Saturday, April 5, 2008

See It Say It Saturday!

See It Say It Saturday is a weekly challenge on ZNE Blogz. Each week a ZNE member's artwork is posted and readers like you (you don't have to be a member to participate) are challenged to consider how this piece of art makes you feel, what it makes you think - what it makes you want to say. You then post your response to this piece on your own blog and link your response (for this week) to this blog post (on ZNE Blogz, not mine). Also, please comment on ZNE Blogz so that others can come visit your response. (You can also include the banner, above, in your post if you want.) If you do decide to take the challenge, let me know, too!



This weeks piece is Tracy Webster's birdhouse that she made for the Habitat for Humanity Birdhouse Auction. Many of you may know Tracy from her store, Collective Artwerx or newsletter. I was really inspired by this piece. First, just the fact that it was for Habitat for Humanity, an organization that I really admire for helping people realize their dreams of home. Secondly, the theme of birds and nesting made me think of the way birds make homes from found objects and how many birds return to the same location or nest each year. How do they find their way home?

Here is my response, in art:


I've titled it, "Finding My Direction Home." I called it that because the piece brings to mind some of the lyrics of Bob Dylan's, "Like a Rolling Stone." (Listed here with intervening lyrics missing - so no one comment to me that they are wrong, okay? I'm merely listing the parts that are relevant to this piece.):

How does it feel

To be without a home

Like a complete unknown

Like a rolling stone?

How does it feel

To be on your own

With no direction home

Like a complete unknown

Like a rolling stone?

If you read about the lyrics, they have nothing to do with homelessness and everything to do with (purportedly) Edie Sedgewick and her obsession with Andy Warhol's Factory. Read out of context, or listened to out of context, they describe a lost feeling that I have read (I in no way presume that I know how it feels) is typical of how a homeless person can feel. Habitat for Humanity works to take away that feeling and replace it with hope and a home.

I invite you to take the See it Say it challenge with me!

If you are interested in donating to Habitat for Humanity, go here.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Etsy for Autism Contest and a few more stamps

APRIL IS AUTISM AWARENESS MONTH!


Here is the promised Etsy for Autism Contest piece. I ended up not putting the words, "Childhood is a journey, not a race." on it. I just couldn't get them to look right on there.

We should have a treasury named Etsy for Autism posted for your viewing pleasure beginning today, April 1st. It is a contest in that the item with the most views at the end of the month wins the contest. Don't let that stop you from buying something you want on the first day, though! The main purpose of the contest is to raise money for Autism Speaks. The head of the study that Rexy is in, Geraldine Dawson, has actually been hired as the Chief Scientific Officer for Autism Speaks. They will be doing more research into causes, therapies, etc with her at the helm. Please stop by Etsy and take a look at everyone's merchandise. If the treasury isn't up yet you can find the items by searching for "Etsy for Autism Contest." that should get you the most results.

UPDATE! HERE IS THE TREASURY!

Here is what I wrote in my description of the piece:

"Childhood is a journey, not a race."
Shortly after my daughter was diagnosed with Autism I found a piece of art online with those words. I now keep them in mind all the time. While I have my eye on the journey my daughter is making, I can listen to what she needs and provide it. When I have my eye on the other racers and their positions I can't hear her.



I made this mixed media painting with that in mind.






I was hideously late getting this done. Can you believe Rexy was sick AGAIN!?!? Gah! In the last six weeks I think she has picked up every little bug within a ten mile radius. 5 times in 6 weeks! She missed another week of school. Sigh...



But! I made more stamps for Crusade #18! Well, I made two and then I carved some stuff on the scraps. First, I made a little bunny for Rexy to stamp with. It's still a little mushy. I could carve it a little deeper and it would be better, I think. Then I made this flaming heart. (More of a symbolic flame, don't you think?) Since my girl was born on
Valentine's day I've become a heart-person. I was never one before this.



Thanks again, Michelle, for a fun project. Time for stencils...