Thursday, February 11, 2016

2016 Valentines

 One good thing about getting older is that winter seems shorter compared to when you were little. Now we are a month and a half into the new year and near the best celebration day of all- the day the majority of this planet's living species start their dances and rituals to celebrate love ... including a massive frolicking in the wild seas, forests, lakes and prairies!!! Just last night I watched the series of Blue Planet and saw the squid mating dance!!!! The males change colors as they perform a ballet for the females. Isn't that fabulous?
Inspired by the playfulness of the artist Jim Dine, I pushed the pigment as a squid dances and made this year's collection of outgoing cards.

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Obsessively and quietly drawing with threads

This is for my son who has had issues with his hands this winter.

And this one is for my trip to Haiti next week...
I am trying to get these cliche images out of my head once and for all. I figure if I toil over them and put every single iconic heart image I think of in one blanket, I literally can wrap it up and move figuratively past the use of these trite valentines in my Art. Maybe. It's an exorcism of sorts.

Saturday, February 6, 2016

Deering Plein Aire event

In partnership with the Grovehouse artists this weekend, Deering is hosting the annual plein aire event on the grounds of the historic estate. I didn't feel well enough to participate fully, but I did swing by to check out the artists at work. They will be there tomorrow as well. It's fun to see how each artist frames their perspective of the place. Back at my studio I played with my own version on a 3 inch by 3 inch canvas. I've set it against a frame of splashy colors; all fun shapes in both pigment and pulp.
I added the evening flocks of birds going to Chicken key for the night, and hints of the mother and baby manatee in the foreground waters.

Patricia Cummins

Jacqueline Gopie's painting
Check out these two artists: Patricia Cummins and Jackie Gopie

Monday, February 1, 2016

Wild Culture! How about galleries, theaters and concert halls in the wilderness?

Deborah Mitchell points out a work of art along trail
#sundaysinthepark #airieresidencies # evergladesart  On Sunday Michael and I caught some performances and installations by artists in residence in the Everglades. Next one is February 28th at the Flamingo Marina!

Saturday, January 30, 2016

The Fabulous Space Coast

 Yesterday I had the extremely fun time of chaperoning a huge group of students to Kennedy Space Center on Cape Canaveral. I had been there in 2008, and was not prepared for how upgraded and different the experience this time around would be. We arrived at 8am and stayed until 6:40pm (dragging the students and younger chaperones away!). The first thing that happened is we met a space man and an astronaut!
I've always wanted to be an astronaut

Al Worden Command Module Pilot for Apollo 15
Astronaut Worden is from Michigan so he appreciated the blustery 58 degree weather. He spoke of his responsibilities flying around the moon (while his co-astronauts walked on it) and taking pictures and finding the perfect future landing site. His eyes got real dreamy as he reflected on seeing both the moon and the earth together for the first time when he was outside the space craft retrieving the video tapes. It's that vision of planet earth that has really changed the human race's perception of who we are and where we call home. Worden is one of the few to see it for his own eyes, unfiltered (except for the gold plated helmet glass screen).
We visited the launch pads and I was so impressed by the size of the Vehicle Assembly Building, (the largest single story building in the world), and the Crawler, that I forgot to take a picture. It was mind boggling.

The water tanks are near the launch pads are there to throw water and muffle the impacting sound of the explosion. Beforehand the sound and pressure of a rocket being launched was breaking windows in Titusville, almost 10 miles away!

At the Apollo/SaturnV center, where command control sits 3 miles away from the launch pad, we were able to be in a re-inactment of a launch. It was spectacular (the windows shook).
The music through out the park really manipulated our emotions and students spoke of both goosebumps and tears.
At the Journey to Mars Pavilion we learned about all that has been going on to get the facts of life about the planet and learn something of it's evolution. There are already 4 American rovers on the planet. (We have left three vehicles on the moon). It was fascinating to learn about the development of each vehicle.
The Opportunity landed on Mars over a dozen years ago

Then the students had a contest to work with a budget and design their own Rover vehicle.

The winning design had to carry four coins (astronauts) and travel the furthest distance. The kids, working in teams of 4, had a great time and each design was innovative. Afterwards in the Atlantis Space Center we experienced a film of how the space shuttle idea was born and the multiple failed experiments the engineers and scientists had to endure. The collaboration and the artwork in drafting ideas was significantly demonstrated. Our guide then shared the daily life habits of astronauts with the kids- everything from how they went to the bathroom to slept, to the food choices in their menus and the maintenance of the interior space in the multi-national station today.

Oh! I almost forgot- I had a burger from out of this world at the Orbit Cafe!

Thursday, January 28, 2016

I love Miami but...

The traffic!!!! It is the worst thing about living here. It is always thick and hazardous, no matter what time of day. People are constantly on the road, racing or braking.  It took me 2.5 hours to go 6 miles and back yesterday after work when I dropped off student work at the Miami-Dade County fairgrounds! Tomorrow I get up at 3am to get on buses at 4am with 150 young students for a field trip up the road. Because of traffic we have to plan twice or thrice the GPS estimated time to get where we need to be.

I wonder I have not been making more paintings about it!