Monday, July 24, 2006


I'm taking on some extra writing work for a while, and today's my first day, so I don't know how my schedule will be in the coming weeks, but I give you this as a snack... it's really just a sketch painting, done on a piece of throwaway illustration board in about 30 minutes one day, but ooooh, it makes me smile.

Friday, July 21, 2006

Step Right Up and Get Yer Paintings!

I am delighted to announce the launch of my Etsy shop at!

Among others, you will find the following paintings for sale:

Circus Tents, 8" x 10", acrylic on canvas panel

Daisies, 8" x 10", acrylic on canvas panel

Little Fish, 8" x 10", acrylic on canvas panel

All of my paintings are backed with cardstock and have ribbon hangers attached so that you can either frame them or hang them directly on the wall.

And don't forget my Cafe Press shop at, where you can also find printed products featuring my photography and other artwork.

Please stop in and look around, and feel free to let me know what you think at paintandink @ gmail . com. I look forward to hearing from you!

Project File Cabinet

So I got a little fed up this week and decided we needed a file cabinet NOW, pronto, immediately. But file cabinets are ridiculously expensive and I didn't want to spend $70 for something made of chipboard. I checked the Salvation Army closest to our house, but they had none, and I had no patience to wait until the next day and go to other stores, so I went to KMart across the street and found a nice particle board file cabinet for $36.99. Okay, well, not nice and still more than it was worth, even with the solid wood trim, but desperation was taking hold.

So I brought it home, assembled it incorrectly a few times (no, I don't do directions well... I'm a trial and error person, myself) and then finally got it together.

And then, even though it actually looked nicer in reality than on the box, I promptly sanded it down, because I never can leave well enough alone, and started plastering it all over with gold wrapping paper, followed by these Maxfield Parrish calendar pages I've had lying around for five years. Finally, a chance to use them!

But then I realized, uh, uh-oh, didn't check the placement of the handles on the drawings before I so blithely plastered (and varnished) everything down.

So I had to improvise, and used picture hanging wire to make my own handles.

That has its own problems. This drawer (above) is okay, but now on the top drawer (see below), it seems as if the girl on the left is chained by the neck to the lamppost on the right. But, ah, there's not much I can do for her at this point, and at least she still has a head. After all, she could have been decapitated by the stock handle.

I won't post a closeup, because, really, I don't want to traumatize anyone.

But here's the final product:

Overall, I'm pretty pleased. I think it looks darn good in reality, even with the, um, unfortunate fate of the girl on the left. If I didn't need the cabinet to be functional so quickly, I would add more trim and decoration, perhaps a little paint, but I'll take it as it is.

Friday, July 14, 2006

The delight is in the giving...

I left my camera's battery charger in California, and just received it in the mail today (thanks Mom and Aunt Joan!), but the battery is not yet charged, so I've scanned these in instead.

This is the card to go with the gift I mentioned here...

and this card will be going to another birthday girl...

along with this:

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

A Must See Site

Be Jackson Pollock. Go on. Check it out. It's fabulous. Great for destressing.

Found through StumbleUpon, which is either one of the greatest things I've ever downloaded or one of the worst (for concentration, that is). Either way, it's one of the most entertaining, sometimes exhilarating and often overwhelming, but always delightful, things I've ever downloaded.

Back to Regularly Scheduled Programming

This is a gift for someone, actually. It was supposed to be a Christmas gift, but now I think it will be a birthday gift. It was "almost" done in December, but it took me until this week to actually finish it. I think, perhaps, I'm having a little trouble giving it up.

As for the sketch below, it's one of many I did last night while watching television. Actually at this point, I was watching a PBS show about Catherine the Great (cheeky girl, she was), and no, I have no idea if this costume is at all like what she actually wore in 18th century Russia, or what she looked like in reality. It was merely inspired by the program. I am working on sketching without thinking, drawing without planning, painting without hesitation. I am working on quantity now and will worry about quality later. All those books on creativity might finally be working.


I've been pondering the subject of formal training lately. Some artists are so proud of their formal training, and others are quite proud to do without it. I've been feeling both super confident and terribly nervous about how to go about making a living from art without formal artistic training. Because truly, my education is in how to run the world. And then how to tell everyone about it.

Then it occurred to me that I am already a writer, which, cheesily enough, requires painting with words. And since I've also worked in TV, I have told plenty of stories with images (and sound, for that matter). I like to think of myself a storyteller-of-all-trades. And as I see it, painting, collage and illustration just fit right in as forms of communication.

But I was nevertheless delighted to remember that I have had at least some formal training in various media:

Summer art classes at Moore College of Art (two years in a row)
A fantastically fun photography class at USC
Ten weeks of watercolor classes one fall
Art and Architecture class at Charles University in Prague (where I was introduced to Fluxus)
Art history class when I lived in Germany
Sculpture class in Philadelphia. (thanks, Amanda and Sabine!)

As for exposure and study, I've been to so many art museums in so many cities and countries, I can't remember them all. Most recently, my mother and I stopped in here, which is a delightful place. Just big enough to satisfy, small enough that you don't feel rushed.

Finally, I did, after all spend three seasons working on Home Matters, meeting and working with a wonderful assortment of crafters, designers and artists.

So, keeping all of that in mind, I feel better about my legitimacy, and can get back to painting. Whew!

Sunday, July 02, 2006

Fun With Photoshop

Oooh lala. I just got a Wacom pen and tablet and I sure do think they're the bee's knees. Still learning how to really have fine control with them, but here's my first experiment: