I have just completed a new quilted artwork inspired by the Call to Entry from the League of NH Craftsmen HOT STUFF exhibit that opens on January 10th in Concord, New Hampshire. ”Shadows and Flame” is a throw back to my original roots in textile art; it is a true quilt, not stretched as I have done in the recent past but instead stitched tightly with under-turned edges that reinforce a firm hanging format.
The quilt features hand painted, hand dyed and over-painted fabrics with microscopic piecing, fused reverse appliqued and detailed stitching which includes the wording for the color formulas used to make the paint colors.
Please join me on opening night of the exhibit to see this work and the other work of some other amazing artists that the League supports. Friday, January 10th 5:00 to 7:00. Wine tasting by LaBelle Winery. LNHC Gallery – 49 South Main Street suite 100 , Concord, NH 603-224-3375. Shows runs through March 21st.
One of the most thoughtful and creative gifts we have ever received at the holidays was this gift given to us last year. I would like to re-gift it to you.
Fashioned from a match box, the gift was hand painted with over-lays of paper and glitter finished like any canvas would be and is an equally stunning art piece. Cleverly, the box is embellished with messages directing the user how to retrieve the many quotes of wisdom within spoken by the very “wise guys”, making the process as inspiring as the quotes themselves.
Let me share the first couple of many of these quotes I hope to share with you as the year goes on. Here is my New Years gift to you; have a happy one friends!
“The appearance of things change according to the emotions, and thus we see magic and beauty in them, while the magic and beauty are really in ourselves.” kahlil gibran
” What if everything is an illusion and nothing exists? In that case I definitely overpaid for my carpet.” Woody Allen
David and I have an idea “worth sharing” - TAD talks; Canterbury.
In the interest of community and using the long winter months as a time for reflection and innovation, David and I would like to start a discussion group in our home art-studio inspired by the TED talks format. Our subjects: Technology, the Arts & Design.
The loose idea is to gather around some wine or tea, pick a topic for the week and flush out our thoughts on it. Maybe some art making would be involved??? Maybe watching a TED talk together??? The desired end result would be mentoring friendship, personal inspiration and expanding our creative awareness. A drop in, come when you can format.
Monday nights 6:30 – 9:00 starting January 6th through February, 2014.
If anyone out there is interested please email me and I will start an email list then be in contact with the details.
This was our Christmas tree two years ago. David was inspired by its quirky shape so, wanting to keep it in the window (where the piano was!), he cut it in half giving the illusion that the tree was growing out of the piano! This was arguably the best tree we have ever had.
Christmas always looks good in this room because of the existing decorative color scheme of red and green. It is not “Christmas Red” or “Christmas Green” but the tones are distinctive chosen because I love the excitement of using complimentary colors together. Colors that are opposite of each other on the color wheel are called Complimentary because of what they do to each other when placed in close proximity. The effect is called Simultaneous Contrast – a trick of the eye – when the optical nerve is stimulated, vibration occurs giving the colors life; literally.
There are many stories of how the colors red and green came to symbolize Christmas – evergreens, everlasting love, red berries, Mary’s blood – but then I like to think that we all need a little jolt in the darker winter months that complimentary color gives us.
Here is a little exercise for you or your Christmas guests to try. This demonstrates how Simultaneous Contrast works. Stare at one of the Christmas trees below without blinking for as long as you can up to 5 minutes. Then close your eyes and you will see the other tree although you did not look at it. The eye inherently recognizes Complimentary tones. Merry Christmas!
David and I attended the Slow Food 25-mile Thanksgiving Dinner celebration again this year joining a larger group of like-minded individuals who enjoy the process of preparing and celebrating food through community. It was years ago that I became intrigued with the “Slow Food” movement. A non-profit member supported association, it was started in Italy in 1989 to counter the rise of fast food and fast life which resulted in the disappearance of local food traditions separating people from the taste and healthful benefits of good food and good community. New Hampshire has it own chapters and the seacoast group puts on this event; they roast the locally grown turkeys and we were each challenged to bring a dish that was prepared from local ingredients all within a 25 mile range of where we live. That was easy living in Canterbury; however this year I embellished a bit with my flavoring.
Since we were attending the event 58 miles from home and after a day of seeing clients, I did all my prep ahead of time. This ahead-of-time technique is great for any busy person or any celebratory meal that has lots of parts to it. I was inspired by the colors of copper and claret so here is my recipe for Roasted Vegetable Citrus Salad with Blue Cheese Buttermilk Cider Dressing.
Prepare and store each vegetable separately then assemble at the last-minute:
- Rinse then peel, then rinse again 1 1/2 lbs. of red beets. I got my beets here in town at Brookford Farm.
- Cut then into like-sized chunks. Put into a roasting pan then toss with a small drizzle of olive oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper then roast at 375º for about 30 minutes – stirring once – until a knife inserts easily. Cool and refrigerate until ready to assemble the salad.
- Wash and lightly peel 1 1/2 lbs. of carrots. Cut into like-sized rounds for even cooking and put into a cooking pot with 1 cup of orange juice (1/4 cup concentrate + 3/4 cup water) and simmer with the lid off for 5 – 6 minutes until they are slightly tender. If you can find any of the variety that has the burgundy exterior – Purple Haze, Maroon, etc – add a few in with your orange and yellow selection to enhance this copper & claret color scheme. I purchased my carrots at the Canterbury Farmers Market.
- Remove your carrots from the remaining liquid with a slotted spoon then add 1/4 cup orange juice concentrate and boil the mixture over medium heat until the liquid has reduced, is deep colored and coats the back of a spoon. Stir in the grated zest of one orange then toss the carrots into the syrup, lightly salt them and turn out onto a plate to cool.
- Cut up several apples of your choice into like-sized pieces then toss them in a mixture of the juice of one lemon and 2T. of orange juice concentrate; drain and refrigerate. This keeps them from turning brown and enhances the citrus flavor of the salad. I used Golden Gem apples because I like their copper/russet color and they taste like a cross between pears and apples. I purchased mine at Apple Hill Orchard in east Concord.
- Blue Cheese Buttermilk Cider Dressing:
- With a fork, smash and crumble 6oz. of any blue cheese. I used Brookford Farms raw milk blue cheese.
- Stir in 1/2 cup cultured buttermilk [note: "cultured" is the real deal buttermilk ONLY available through local farm sources or natural food stores. What is sold in the supermarket is not really buttermilk at all. A true cultured buttermilk adds a thickness and nutritional value for your gut and tastes incredible.] I got mine at Brookford Farms.
- Also stir in 1/4 cup apple cider, 1 tsp walnut oil, 3 or so grinds of black pepper and 1/4 tsp salt. My cider came from Apple Hill Orchard in east Concord.
- Use an immersion blender if desired to smooth out the mixture. Chill.
Assembling the salad; Create a bed a of rinsed and chopped kale then layer the beets, carrots and apples in any method you find pleasing. Sprinkle chopped walnuts and a few pomegranate seeds on top to add color and crunch. I scooped out the insides of two apples and used them to hold the dressing. Enjoy! Please feel free to share this recipe. All publication rights of any kind are reserved, however.
I thought all of you might enjoy this post I just did on my professional blog. A fascinating topic of personal coloring…
Choosing the right shade of red.
We had an enjoyable dinner with some new friends last night and the bulk of our conversation centered around our individual struggles with creative expression. All four of us are self-employed successfully working our cerebral professions – and feeling happy that we have them – yet we each have a form of art that we are longing to create. We each are practicing the art, more or less, yet still there is this deep longing and a confusion of time & money management that hangs over our heads. Ultimately D said it best, that creative expression is not fully realized until it is shared.
In that spirit, let me share a link on this topic. It arrived in my in-box this AM and I think it is one of the most profound articles on the creative process that I have read, describing the artistic need to create and how to balance it against a culture that tells us we need to monetize everything. From Garlingo.com “On money, fear, and the artist”- for you D - enjoy!
Sharing my art work above: painted, printed, stitched and stretched cotton. SOLD in private collection. Jane Balshaw