Friday, October 26, 2012

Here I Go Again

Somewhere along the way I seemed to have missed summer and the start of fall.   So busy with co-promoting and exhibiting in Savor The Arts that time just flew by - and most of my energy must have accompanied it.

After spending so many hours on the computer,  I felt the need to get away from it all - and get away I did.  Only when I heard faint cries and whines coming from the computer did I realize how shamefully I had neglected my Blog.   And then my fingers started twitching.  No chains to make - no pendants to attach - and what about the earrings?   And the paint brushes - how sad they look, tucked away into their little jars far away from all the luscious paints.  Artists just cannot retire.  It is in your blood and there is no walking away from creating.

My best friend Patty also retired.  I first met Patty when I wandered into her bead shop and found the most  artful selection of beads that I had ever seen.  After about 15 minutes of talking our auras became completely enmeshed and  we knew we were destined to become fast friends.  I ended up teaching classes in her shop and we often spoke of having "play dates" when we had the time.   Now, after 20 years spent owning her own bead shop she has handed over the key to a new owner.  I gave up exhibiting at art shows several years ago and we are both free at last and able to just sit back and take it easy.  Or Not.

Because life without art is just plain boring.  We are destined to create - ideas are spinning in our heads - techniques we have learned along the way- supplies ready to be used.  And the "stuff" we have accumulated over the year -  stacks and stacks of stuff.  Because we knew we would need it someday.

After much brain storming we decided that "someday" is actually "now".  Patty has been associated with Plantiques for several years.  And I have shopped there for many years.  Seems only natural that we pool our talents - and our stuff - and take off on another artful adventure.

For those of you in Tidewater Virginia - Plantiques is located in the historic Hilton Village area.  An elderly but  charming (much like myself?) house owned by my new best friend Pam Phillips (not to be confused with my best friend Pam White).

Located in Newport News, VA at 10377 Warwick Blvd. it is a dream come true for a day of antiquing - lunching - and strolling down the boulevard to visit the other shops along the way.  As you walk up to the door, along a brick path surrounded by flowers and herbs, you feel you are in an English garden.

Once inside you will find two stories of rooms - each individually furnished by by those of us drawn to the fields of antiquing and art.

My best friend Nora's space bears the name "The British Connection" - and British she is.  Nora travels back to England quite often and oh - the finds she brings back!!!

I just might mention that Nora also makes scones the way they should be made and If you are lucky enough to secure a reservation for one of the Plantiques teas you can taste for yourself.
More about the teas in my next Blog - but save the date November 10!!!!!

Another favorite space is the reading room.

And a lady I have yet to meet, but in my mind she is The Princess of Paper!

A small sample of the lovely things she creates from paper!!  Come see for yourself the wonders she has made!!

And just to tempt you a bit more - - 

One last thing - The space called Loverly.  I have not met the talented ladies who have this room - but oh - those lamp work beads - and the jewelry they make!

Okay - I'll get to the point!!!  Patty and I have decided to join in and are very busy preparing our room for a grand opening in November.  Patty's husband Bob is our valuable aide in getting the room together

The green - which doesn't look too bad in the pictures - but in person - bilious - had to go.  Bob has installed pegboards for us and we are busily covering the walls in - what else - patterns and a few other things.

 Bob and Patty discuss things to come - do you think Bob is dubious???  Or is he saying - "Where did you meet her?"    Patty looks a bit concerned also - don't you think?

We  really will have it all together by November 1.  And to tempt you to pay us a visit - On November 10 we will be hosting a trunk show - the date coincides with Pam's high tea - would suggest you make your reservations quickly for that - and we would surely love it if our friends would pay us a visit.  In addition to showing our wares we are planning on teaching days - make it and take it days - and days for just plain fun.

If you would like to join in the fun please leave us your email and you will be notified of all events.

Retirement?  Hey - if you rest - you rust!!!

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Suffering Thru a Tired On
And living to Blog about it!~!

Oh come on now – you have all been there.  Just plain tired.

  My grandmother would say “worn to a frazzle”. 

Tired of the heat – our hottest summer on record “they” say
I believe them.

Tired of the mess.  Trying to convert a garage into my studio.  Which means moving boxes of “stuff” and armloads of  “ things” from an upstairs bedroom to the new and not yet perfect studio. Of course it would go a lot faster if not for the discoveries! 

  When did I buy that - or should that be those?

along with why did I buy that?

And the really big – Do I still need that?

Or this?

Above all, tired of thinking.  Where does this go? Will I use that?  Does this still work? 

 Never mind that during all this time I was busily trying to set up a Blog, design a postcard, figure out how to size and move photos- and deal with more than the usual number of I things. So far I’ve managed IMac, I phone and I pod and I think that is remarkable for a “lady of years”. (Ok -I admit I did have a bit of tech support)

Just let me say this tho - I am not that fond of the I Ron and until someone designs a remote for it - the clothes stay in the basket!!!

Even tiredness comes with some measure of benefits. A new, more comfortable chair  at my computer desk has allowed me to spend more time resizing photos .  Here are a few resized shots of some of the wonderful art you will be able to view at Savor the Arts on September 15.  (It's that segue thing again!!)

Bill Turner's Wood Carvings
Nancy Wall's fish sculpture

Lynn Kelley's Painted Gourd

Thanks for listening to me whine.  Just remember this - Self Pity is Better Than No Pity At All!!!


I knew I needed those things!!!!


Monday, August 6, 2012

Publicity 101

Thins are moving right along - that's scary.  Venue is rented, top notch artists busy creating wonderful things, postcard designed, printed and in hand.

Now to get the word out to the public.

  Along with mailing postcards to old friends from our last show and to new friends we have met,  several have asked for digital postcards - what?

I can't find that in the How To book.  It has been suggested that I can print the card here and people can use this to send to their friends?  We'll see!!!

Postcard for Savor the Arts 2012

Back side of Postcard

The card features a art by Noreen Dobrantz - Angela Stroup - Catherine Mein - Chris Pascuzzi - Carolyn Rhoads and Lynn Kelley.  All my best friends - goes without saying.

Sometimes I wonder if anyone at all ever reads this Blog.  This will be the test for sure.  If you are able to use this card - please let me know!!

I read that the conclusion to anything occurs when you are tired of thinking - and I am -

until next time!

Friday, August 3, 2012

Peninsula Fine Arts Center

 Those of us living in Tidewater Virginia have the opportunity to belong to the Peninsula Fine Arts Center – better known as PFAC. Please check the PFAC website – you will be amazed at the paths you can follow to:
 Step into art!

Compliments of my best friend and TAG member, Terry Snyder

In addition to offering members the chance to enlarge their art education by viewing an ever-changing array of exhibitions, we may also take classes in painting, pottery, drawing, art appreciation and more.  And –should we become proficient in our endeavors - we have the opportunity to showcase our efforts in the Gallery Shop.

A plug for the writer - my best seller in the shop by far!!

The Gallery Shop is one of the hidden wonders of our Peninsula.  I am always amazed when I meet someone who does not know of all the hand crafted, artist originals available for purchase in the shop.

Small sample of what you will find in the shop.  

Now  please meet  several of my best friends – all met through PFAC and all who will be exhibiting at Savor The Arts in September.

Getting pretty good at this segue stuff, aren’t I?

My best friend Terry Cox-Joseph divides her time between painting Italian Tiles and fun paintings using acrylics, watercolor and airbrush. Her art appears on the small – greeting cards, book covers, and websites – and the large - including wall murals and Norfolk’s “Mermaids on Parade – and on this Blog – imagine that!

In addition to PFAC, Terry is an artist member of Blue Skies Gallery in Hampton.  Did I mention murals?

My best friend Catherine Mein and I first connected at the Art and Soul Retreat in Hampton – Catherine is the fearless leader of our Tidewater Art Guild.  You may view her art in the Gallery Shop and several galleries in Virginia Beach. 

This is just a taste - Wouldn't you know just as she was preparing to send me pics and facts  her house was struck by lightening and she had no power at all.  Okay - that's what she told me and it sounded better than "the dog ate it".  

My best friend Lynne Oglesby is a potter extraordinaire.  In addition to creating wonderful works of art, she shares her love of pottery by teaching class at PFAC.  Not only will you be able to view and purchase her work at Savor the Arts – you will also be able to lean about her classes and perhaps sign up for a few!!!  Her pottery is featured in the photo above taken in the Gallery Shop and also in this pic.

Yes, I realize this is excessive coverage of the necklace - however, I did not receive photos of Lynne's work so I snapped this shot, and the one above, in he Gallery Shop while she was busy doing jury duty!

Beginning to understand why I love this place?  PFAC is filled with inspiration and opportunities to meet those who inspire.
And you may meet all the above face to face when you attend Savor the Arts.

And this is only the beginning – I am truly amazed at the number of best friends I have met through PFAC. Does this sound like bragging? So be it!

 You first met my best friend Angela in a previous Blog.  My best friend Harriet is yet to be met.  I had intended to show you pictures of some of her glamorous jewelry today.   Unfortunately, during the past storm my electricity went out - for just a few seconds - and I lost my complete email program - along with her email and pictures of her jewelry.  (Does this sound a lot like my best friend Catherine's story?  I told you we were soul mates!)
Stay tuned – you will be meeting more of my best friends in Blogs to come!!

I trust I have managed to stay on track with this writing.  All about PFAC artists – right!  Sometimes my mind wanders!!

Fortunately it is too weak to go far!

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Dealing With The World – Online

Better know in this household as “Please pass the Prozac!”

Seems every step forward I make in understanding how to master all the many advantages of the world wide web lead to two steps backward for a very simple thing.

Several years ago a middle school class I was teaching at church talked me into joining Face Book.  I didn’t post much but it was fun to read what they were doing – and no – I didn’t tell their parents.

Now that I am promoting Savor The Arts I find Face Book to be a valuable tool. I can post pictures or furnish links and I can also make comments on anything I choose.  Or can I?

I post comments – I click like, and share and I am quite happy with myself – except the comments never show up – anywhere, for anyone to read, or appreciate.  Where do they go? I read the dummy book – I asked friends, no one could give me any advice on the matter.
And then a child, a young guileless child, looked at me –( it was one of those askance looks again) – and said – “hit enter”  Enter? - Enter?    Enter?
Yes, I am shouting – sorry – and – please pass the Prozac – again!

So now I can post comments – you may wish she had never told me how to do it.

Moving on to how to post a link to this site when I leave a comment – only every time the link comes up – so does a picture of my best friend Noreen’s jacket.

Goes without saying – it is a beautiful jacket – and very pleasing to the eye – but it is not the Savor the Arts logo.

I am going to need some help on this.  Wait – I hear children laughing – They are right in the yard next door –
Help is at hand – I’ll get back to you on this! – With pictures!

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Promoting an Art Show - 101

As previously mentioned, my best friend Karen, my best friend Shirlie and I – (all being around the age of those who remember when Mickey Rooney and Judy Garland became bored and declared – “I know, lets produce a show!”) thought it might be fun to produce our own art show. 

It would be a very upscale event.  We would handpick the artists.  We would have door prizes. We would serve refreshments. All those with a true appreciation of original and fine art would seek us out.

So we did.  And we called the event Savor the Arts and – guess what – all the above came true.  WOW – was that ever fun.

Or not.  We forgot one little thing – that four-letter word that I never use and do not wish those around me to use – WORK

So lets discuss how to really promote an art show.
Lesson No. 1 - of course – location, location, location.
Since our best friend Karen lives in Marlbank and had access to the Marlbank clubhouse that decision was easy.
Lesson No, 2 – pick a date.  One that does not interfere with any other art show being held on that date – not so easy.  But doable.

Now we have made it to the fun part – selecting the artists.
In my not so humble opinion – the most important part of the show.  And a perfect segue to the introduction of the artists you will meet in this years show.  

In our 2011 show my best friend Noreen Dobratz earned the title “Queen of Fiber Art.”   One picture - thousand words!

Talk about upbeat and uninhibited!  Both Noreen and her jackets!   Shouldn’t we expect that from someone born and raised in San Francisco?

We are ever so grateful that she and her husband Duane moved to Williamsburg. Noreen is a member of the American Sewing Guild and both the Yorktown Art Gallery and Blue Skies Gallery in Hampton, Virginia show her jackets.   She has won four national creativity awards.  Noreen continues to build her skills through classes in design and fiber art techniques.

I first met Angela Stroup through the Peninsula Fine Arts Center in Newport News, VA.  – (better known as PFAC.)  When I saw her display of fine art I knew she would fit right in.  Not only is she multi talented, she is one of the most caring, sharing and giving persons I have had the pleasure to meet.  Please click on her name, go to her website, and read Angela’s full story.

My meeting Angela proves that if you spend your days in galleries and museums and surround yourself with fine art you will meet only the best artists.
(Okay – so it was the PFAC Girl’s Night Out and along with showing her art she was giving belly dancing lessons – could it get any better than that?)

This is Angela's  painting chosen to grace the front of our postcard:

Until next time and more artists to meet  - remember - chocolate makes your clothes shrink.

Saturday, July 21, 2012


Some people collect salt shakers - I collect best friends. Collecting best friends is a lot like any other collection.  Sometimes you look and look and find nothing and then comes a day when you strike pay dirt!! 

My big pay day came when I joined the Tidewater Art Guild . This amazing group of women was formed after a few of us met at an Art and Soul Retreat.  My best friend Catherine suggested that those of us attending the retreat from the tidewater region of Virginia form a local group and meet regularly to indulge our artistic endeavors.  Thus was born TAG.

Salt shakers are sometimes pretty - sometimes witty - sometimes just plain cute,  But can they do anything?  Perhaps - if you need salt to pour on a wound - but how often does that happen?

I prefer the salt of the earth.  According to the Oxford Dictionary of Idioms, the phrase "salt of the earth" is now used to describe a person or  persons of great kindness, reliability and honesty.  Although Oxford didn't mention it - also a perfect description of my best friends.

About now I need a picture - worth a thousand words and all that.
But I don't have one.
And that leads us back to the first posting of this blog where I admitted I did not have a clue as to how this whole thing works.  Especially how to post pictures - or even how to take a good picture - among other things - like followers, and links.

Enter my best friend Pam.    Pam spent the afternoon with me and patiently led me through the ins and outs of gadgets for the blog.  Now I can add links, my friends can become followers of the blog and even put in their email so they will be notified when I have a new posting.   She also put in a link to my Picasa Gallery.  Now the problem is getting the pictures to the gallery in the first place.

Now that those gadgets are in place I thought I would tell you a bit about the past weekend spent with some of the TAG members at my best friend Catherine's house.  Pam should have stayed longer - I can't seem to grasp that whole photo thing.

Enter my best friend Dawn.  Please click on her name (see how well I learned) and you will be led to her amazing Blog which completely covers our Tag Art Camp - with pictures and everything.  WOW - what an amazing woman.

Good Heavens.  This Blog thing is a piece of cake -   All I have to do is put in a link to all my interests
and my followers will be entertained forever.

Can you hardly wait to see who I link with tomorrow?

By the way, as days go by  you will no doubt learn to take a lot of what I say wih a grain of  salt!!

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Imagine My Surprise

Early this morning, while basking in the glow of actually getting my blog online at last, I foolishly clicked on Savor the Arts.  Ready to post again – eager to see if I remembered anything I learned yesterday!
Apparently Not!

I was immediately led to a nice manly, but blank, page – listed as belonging to my George.   I asked him how that happened!

Guess he doesn't know either. 

My intentions were good.  Today’s blog would have been the first of my  “Lessons learned promoting your very own art show”

The above pic is from the very first one!  And the one and only picture from that event that  I have been able to upload.

So - Lesson No. 1 - Get help from your friends!!!!  And I will.  This upcoming weekend I will be traveling to Virginia Beach to teach a class in metal etching,  a technique learned  from my best friends Linda and Opie O'Brien and Melissa Manley.

Aside from teaching, I will be learning how to fine tune my Blog from a few of my friends in the Tidewater Art Guild.  And then I will be able to take better pictures, post them, add links,  and make comments.

 Really??    Trust me!

In the meantime, since I didn't talk about my artful passion in the last blog, this one is going to be all about me!
Okay - so the pictures are really from a Halloween party.   But, believe me, I have seen that look on his face  many, many times!!!!

After exhibiting in art shows for 20 years I retired from that career, sold the van and all the accouterments.  No more the days and nights of painting to get ready for a show – no packing – no driving long distances– no setting up – no taking down.
Peace and quiet at last.  How boring.  My fingers were itchy.   My mind was stagnant.   And then I saw an ad for Art and Soul – in Hampton – in Virginia - just down the street  - almost.

How fast can you sign up for not only a full day class every day of the retreat – but the night classes as well?  Bless computers – 15 minutes max!

Although all the classes I took were painting related – I met Susan Lenart Kazmer.  Oh the inspiration, the envy, and the desire to own every piece of jewelry she ever made.  Don’t know how to add a link to her site.  Please Google her name and see for yourself.

I did speak to the people at social security about my need to increase the amount of my checks.  They looked at me askance - As I said above, I get that a lot - and suggested I learn to make my own jewelry.  So I did!

And this is a sample of my passion 

Until next time - 
Blessed be the cracked, for they shall let in the light

Monday, July 9, 2012

Savor The Arts

Welcome friends - old, new and yet to meet
This is my first attempt at blogging.  So far - not one of the things I savor - 
However, I am assured it will become easy for me, please bear with me until then.

Altho I am not yet an accomplished blogger, I am most definitely a Savorer.  Mr. Webster informs me the word means "one who savors".   And I do!  So many things - the arts (hence the title of this blog) music - travel - creating - decorating and design - gardening – art retreats - the list goes on and on.

Did I mention shopping?

Above all, I savor friendship.  And it was the friendship of two women who started this latest adventure in my life.

Meet my best friend Shirlie

And my best friend Karen

Both friends retired from careers in the education field and are now enjoying living the artful life.

Shirlie is a most wonderful artist.  She has participated in many Art Shows throughout Virginia.  Her paintings are now on display at the Gallery at York Hill In Yorktown, Virginia.  She is a new member of the Hampton Art League.

Karen’s passion is jewelry. Her designs use semi-precious stones collected from her travels across the United States and Europe. She joined with her sister, my best friend Sandy, to create their business – Designs 2 Wear –featuring one of a kind pieces that have been featured in museum shops and boutiques   in three different states.   

Wouldn't you just know this new adventure  led me to becoming one of the 3 promoters of a fine art show.  And trying to learn about bloging - and taking  really good pictures - and - oh my goodness - the agony of actually uploading anything I did.  

You are invited to learn more about Savor The Arts - when, why and where - and of course who.  
Tomorrow for sure (?) I will  be telling you a little about how we started our adventure and as the days go I will also be posting pictures of our participating artisans and telling you a little about them also.

In the meantime - 

Have a blessed and blissful day!!