Even the weeds look good.

When you’re in Santa Fe, even the weeds look good.

Every year, about this time, I reminisce about a road trip I took to Santa Fe a couple of years ago. I hadn’t planned on getting stuck there – but a snowstorm kept me there a couple of days longer than I’d planned.

It was wonderful.

I wandered aimlessly; not having an itinerary, and I think that is what helped to make it such a great trip and one I think of often.

Blender Splendor

I’ve recently discovered the amazing world of iPhonography.

I was browsing in the digital camera section at Barnes & Noble a couple of weeks ago and I happened upon the book, iPhone Obsessed: Photo Editing Experiments with Apps, by Dan Marcolina.

I’m always on the look-out for new books – and since I visit bookstores fairly regularly, I notice things like that.  So I started looking through it and immediately got that fluttery feeling in my stomach.  You know the one I’m talking about – the one that makes you feel a little excited and a little queasy at the same time?  Well, its the feeling I get and its a feeling I know to pay attention to – because its an indicator of good things to come.  You’ll just have to trust me on that. But mainly because I bought a book on iPhonography and I have a Droid!

Long story – short…I have since adopted an older iPhone (that had been relegated to iPod status) and the rest is history.

To date…I have thirty-two apps…if that gives you any idea.

This image was taken with “Blender” – a close up of my eye, a photo of some text, and a photo of some flowers outside a restaurant…Its like having a photo studio in the palm of your hand!

If you love it so much, why don’t you marry it??

Its funny how inspiration can sometimes come right out of the blue (pun intended).

I was daydreaming in the studio the other day (I do this a lot) and I got to thinking about how much I enjoy working in encaustics.  There is something very relaxing about the process.  And I really, REALLY love the aroma of melted beeswax.

I also love photography.

Very much. 

Infrared, particularly so.

‘If you love it so much, why don’t you marry it?’ (remember that from elementary school?)

Hmmm….

May I introduce…the newest addition to my family…”Infrared Encaustics”.

A match made in heaven.

What do you think…

What do you think gets us further in life…

Sheer determination?

Or peer pressure?

Happy May Day!

Midsummer Eve – by Edward Robert Hughes

Edward Robert Hughes (1851 – 1914) was an English painter who worked in a style influenced by Pre-Raphaelitism and Aestheticism.  Some of his best known works are Midsummer Eve and Night With Her Train of Stars.   He experimented with ambitious techniques and was a perfectionist; he did numerous studies for many of his paintings, some of which turned out to be good enough for exhibition.

For a time, Hughes was an assistant to the elderly William Holman Hunt.  He helped the increasingly infirm Hunt with the version of The Light of the World now in St. Paul’s Cathedral and with The Lady of Shalott.

I’ve always loved this piece and May Day seems to be the perfect time to incorporate it into a post; since not quite as many people are familiar with the summer solstice!

May Day is related to the Celtic festival of Beltane and the Germanic festival of Walpurgis Night. May Day falls exactly half a year from November 1, another day which is also associated with various northern European pagan celebrations.

As Europe became Christianized, the pagan holidays lost their religious character and either changed into popular secular celebrations, as with May Day, or were merged with or replaced by new Christian holidays as with Christmas, Easter, Pentecost and All Saints Day.   In the twentieth century, many neopagans began reconstructing the old traditions and celebrating May Day as a pagan religious festival again.

Origins

The earliest May Day celebrations appeared in pre-Christian times, with the festival of Flora, the Roman goddess of flowers, and the Walpurgis Nights celebrations of the Germanic countries.

The day was a traditional summer holiday in many pre-Christian European pagan cultures. While February 1 was the first day of spring, May 1 was the first day of summer, hence, the summer solstice on June 25 (now June 21) was Midsummer. Fading in popularity since the late 20th century is the giving of “May baskets,” small baskets of sweets and/or flowers, usually left anonymously on neighbors’ doorsteps.

Let us take our baskets early
To the meadows green,
While the wild-flowers still are pearly
With the dewdrops’ sheen.

Fill them full of blossoms rosy,
Violets and gay
Cowslips, every pretty posy
Welcoming the May.

Then our lovely loads we’ll carry
Down the village street,
On each door, with laughter merry,
Hang a basket sweet.

*information found in Wikipedia; poem found on comingholidays.com;

The Power of the Container

The Power of the Container

I love this

This is taken from the ‘new’ book, The Encaustic Studio: a wax workshop in mixed-media art, by Daniella Woolf – that I just got the other day.

She says…

“I have been gifted with a wildly fertile, actively creative mind.  I look at an object, a pattern, a tree, whatever, and my mind goes to town and morphs, morphs, and morphs.  I love to be in that creative place; maybe it’s similar to the experience of meditation for some.  However, if I don’t put a harness on it, it can run away with me or paralyze me.  I have learned to limit my options, perhaps by color, pen, or medium, but there must be some parameters for my work.

I call this having a container.  In some ways, it doesn’t really matter what those parameters are, but simply that they exist.  If I give myself free reign and infinite options with which to create, I can’t move.  The world is too big.  But if I give myself a few limits, I am golden.  I can soar and fly and go completely wild within this container.

(I used to) pick a project or give myself an assignment for the month, with limitations that would force me to explore new territory.  For example, one December I put these parameters in place: I would work only with black pens, white paper, and two paper shredders.  With these simple implements, I developed a new vocabulary for myself.  My handwriting and mark-making looked different with just a change of the gauge of the pen or the scale of the work.

Challenge yourself to work with limits.  Whether you restrict your selections of materials, colors, or themes, see how far you can go in your art with fewer inputs.  Limits create a container for your work that will allow you to explore ideas in depth and go beyond what you think you know about the things you have at hand.

I don’t know about everyone else but this is so true for me.  (I have the same problem when I’m standing in front of my closet and haven’t already decided what I will wear that day).

I plan to put this process to work this weekend – I’m expecting an order of supplies tomorrow (hopefully) …so we’ll see!

I’ll let you know how it turns out!

Image of my (glass) desk top taken with my cell phone and the ‘roidizer’ app.

 

Turbulance

Turbulance is a recent encaustic piece.

And here are some random images from here and there…for a bit of color inspiration.