Thursday, April 30, 2009

My Figure Drawing Students Rock!

My figure drawing class met for the last time last night, and they really did a great job on their final projects!! The final consisted of having to combine two different poses into one drawing. They had an hour and a half for each pose.
Check out the whole group of drawings on my Flickr page - they are all really fantastic!

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Cannot Wait to Start Gardening!!

Our landlord is tilling the gardens this next week ( I know, we have an awesome landlord right?? ) and I can't wait to get out there and plant!! Some of the things that grew really well last year were the Thai Basil, Zinnias, and Green Beans. I am going to do a lot more beans this year because they are so easy to freeze and use later.
On the list for the garden this year is:
- Beans
- Tomatoes
- Yellow Tomatoes
- Spinach
- Jalapenos
- Red Peppers
- Zucchini
- Armenian Cucumbers
- Carrots
- Green Onions
- Chives
- Cilantro
- Sunflowers and Zinnias

I know this year will go better than last year for sure! I will be starting a whole month earlier, and that will make a huge difference. We are past the date for the last frost, so I am going to put everything in the ground right away next week.

Do you guys in the midwest have any good ideas for mulching?? I was a little bit overtaken by weeds last year, so I would love to be able to avoid some of that this year. :) Thanks!

Friday, April 24, 2009

Workspace Revamp - New (to me) Mirrors

My workspace in our apartment was in dire condition, so dire that I am not showing any before pictures! It was dark in the corner that I work in, so I revamped some mirrors I found at the thrift store to reflect some of the light from our one set of windows in the living room.
They were super dirty, and cost me a whole $1.50 for the three of them. I loved the shape, but not their gaudy gold color...So, two coats of dark blue acrylic paint later.....
New snazzy mirrors. They really do bring a lot of light to my formerly sad and lonely corner. I also hung a little string with some clothespins attached to hang prints from. I have an ever expanding little print collection, and I like to rotate them in and out, so this was the perfect solution for me.

Lastly, I love my secretary desk!! My Gma and Gpa C gave it to me when we moved in. It is my favorite piece of furniture. Plenty of storage in the drawers, and I can hide away all of my messes when I'm not working on something. Have a great weekend!!

Thursday, April 23, 2009

MFA Shows and Studio Work

It is MFA thesis show season, and I've had the pleasure of going to quite a few amazing shows, as well as looking forward to a few as well. This piece is from Anna Kenar, and I love it:I have developed a love/hate relationship with charcoal after teaching life drawing this semester, and this piece definitely falls into the 'love' category.
I've been plugging away on my lace painting as well. I had to re-do what I had done the first round of painting because I didn't like how bright I had painted it. So I re-did that section in a more natural tan color. Much better.

Playing Catchup

It has been a hectic few weeks around here. School has taken a front seat for both Nate and I, and we've been working hard getting ready for finals which are about a week and a half away. It has been busy, but not overwhelmingly so (knock on wood!). In the meantime I've let my blogging go to the wayside, so I'm going to try to play catchup here.
For Easter we went back home to Wisconsin, and brought the cats. They had my parents house to themselves, so they had a blast. I get a kick out of this picture of them in their carrier. For the most part they just sit happily in there for the whole two and a half hour drive. Their dainty little curled paws crack me up. :)
We had a great Easter feast at Gramma B's and then sat for a few hours watching various babies of Nate's cousins do various adorable things. The day before Easter Nate and I went in to Spring Green for lunch and some shopping with his parents. We ate at the General Store Cafe which is on my top 10 list of favorite restaurants. They have a rotating menu, so there is always something new. They also make a ton of vegetarian and vegan food, which is always amazing.
Nate went for the spicy chicken sandwich. It was awesome. He also felt glad to be back in WI where he can wear his Packers sweatshirt without fear of being harassed. I went for the artichoke heart quiche and the garden veggie and lentil soup. Yum!
Our trip home was a nice little escape from school and work. Both of us are REALLY looking forward to summer.
So is Rascal:

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

New Painting

A sort of dual self portrait. 6x6" Oil on board.

It is my plan to do more of these.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Sweater Project - Continued

I may have gone to the thrift store the other day....
I think I made out like a villain. I got all of these lovely sweaters for about $13. The light colored ones are all cotton, and are destined to become part of future art projects. The darker ones, on the other hand, are very nice merino wool sweaters. They are destined to become knitting projects, or at the very least, lovely skeins of yarn.

There was one sweater in particular that I spotted from yards away:
It was a boxy short sweater made from beautiful self-striping wool yarn. Think Noro but softer and 2-ply. Lovely eh?
I got a pretty good amount. Enough for a sweater or a hat/scarf/mitten set.
Lastly, here my piece from the Ars Nova show!
I've stolen this photo from the gallery's website... On the right of my piece is my good friend Kim Strom's piece. She landed first prize in the show! Congrats Kim!
I also went to two other shows last night, one at Gallery 214, and one at Bad Dog Gallery. More on those later though, I'm off to head home for Easter!

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Old Sheet to New Rug!

We needed a new bathroom rug, so I looked around online and found a bunch of people making rugs from old t-shirts, but I didn't really want to take all of the time to cut all of the shirts. I thought I would try this with a bed sheet instead. Here is the finished project! I love it, it is super cushy and the texture is really fun.
The sheet I got was a king size flat sheet (for $1!) and it was 100% cotton. To get it into a continuous strip, I cut off all f the edges, and then I cut a notch about 1" from the side and tore it almost to the end of the sheet. Then I cut another notch and tore it in the opposite direction making one really long zig-zag strip. Then I crocheted it into a big rectangle until I ran out of yarn. I love the texture!!I had a little bit of the sheet left over and so I decided to make a little pot holder. I also got a little wooden box at the thrift store. I love tiny boxes and containers. I always fill them with buttons or beads.Tomorrow the show that I'm in opens at the Jack Olson Gallery on campus. The opening is at 4:30pm! I have two pieces in the show, so if you come out, make sure to say hello!

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Chicago Trip - From Trash to Spectacle Lecture

This last week Nate and I went in to Chicago to attend the 'From Trash to Spectacle' lecture series at the Art Institute. It was a really great time, we did a little shopping and eating out as well. :)
Here we are coming in to the emerald city - this is the view looking through the green windows on the metra train.
Doesn't Nate look excited to be riding the train? This picture cracks me up. The lecture was great, and afterwords we walked around downtown for a little while. The weather was absolutely perfect for walking around.After getting in a little bit of shopping, we went to the north loop and had dinner at Fado's Irish Pub. It was D-lish. Of course we had to have a Guinness. I had a great time. :)
Also, if you are interested in hearing the lecture, go to the Blog of the lecture series, there is a link to hear a podcast of the first lecture, and I'm sure they'll post a link to the second one as well.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

'Invisible, Invincible' - Part of the Sweater Project

This is the finished piece that used the yarn that I've been spinning. It is about 8 feet long!
I brought it in to the university earlier this week to enter into a show. I was tempted to just wear it as a scarf for a little while before bringing it in. It is deceivingly heavy as it is made from super chunky cotton yarn.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Thrifted Bag Redo and a Continuation of the Sweater Project

I had been looking for a nice leather bag for a while. I have a few stipulations when it comes to bags. First, they've got to have a long strap. I am always doing stuff with my hands, and I hate having to keep a handbag on my arm. Also, it can't be too big. I hate huge bags-- that's what backpacks are for. So I went to the thrifting Tuesday and found this pretty:
But, it needed something. Lace!! I sewed some of my vintage lace onto the purse on the train into Chicago yesterday. End result = LOVE!It was the perfect size for walking around the city all day. I could fit my sketchbook, wallet, small digital camera, and my cell phone perfectly.
I also made some progress on the Sweater Project. I spun these up this weekend, and they are drying - they take sooo long to dry because they are bulky and cotton.
I'm going to post some pics of our Chicago adventure later today or early tomorrow. The lecture we went to was amazing as well, I'll post a link to the podcast once it is posted on the art institute's blog. :)