Sun Series #1

Sun Series #1

Sunday, May 14, 2017


"Sewing Rituals"
encaustic monotype and collage with hand stitching
5x5" each

I have been thinking about rituals a lot lately.
What is a ritual?
In what way is it different from a routine?

For me, routine implies something ordinary and habitual like that morning cup of coffee. Or taking a daily walk.
While these things are enjoyable, satisfying and done regularly, they don't seem to be ritualistic.
They are routine.  They are habits.
Ritual seems to be more about doing something that you love, something you really care about,
something that holds a special meaning or importance to you. A ritual is something that one might continue throughout the years because the ritual has become an integral part of who you are.

As I write this, I can still see that the two words, routine and ritual, are closely aligned.
Perhaps thinking about rituals such as weddings or liturgies, birthdays and holidays, comes closest to the kind of ritual meaning I am addressing.

For me, sewing has long been a part of my art practice.  It is more than habit or routine. It is an integral part
of my artwork and of how I think as an artist.
My art whether on fabric or paper, canvas or collage, often involves sewing.
Many times it is the part of the art making that I like best.
Often the sewing is what differentiates my mixed media work from that of other mixed media artists.
In that way, sewing is a ritual for me.

Wanting to make an artwork that speaks directly to that idea is the basis of the two pieces here.
They are the beginning of a work I am titling "Sewing Rituals".
I am not sure how large it will be or how long it will take.
It s not so much a daily practice.
It is more about the specific ritual, sewing, that in and of itself is the concept of the final artwork.

Monday, May 8, 2017


"Leaf Letters"
rusted and stained paper with Tulip Tree leaves and stitching


In preparation for my upcoming Rust, Bleach, Burn and Stain class at the Morgan Conservatory ( in August I have been working with these processes and having some fun!
The rusted bits came from some cans that my husband found in the desert in Arizona
when he was out there last fall.
The staining is from some loose tea that made this great bluish color.
The leaves are from out Tulip tree.  I love the decayed and fragile nature of them.
And I did the stitching with the thread I solar dyed in February.  The blue color of the thread came from black bean water.  Who knew?  Well, I am sure those who do a lot of natural dyeing know, but it was a surprise to me.

As I write this it is interesting to realize the geography and chemistry involved in this piece.
Cans that have been rusting in the Arizona sun and sand.
The natural decay of the leaves in my own back yard.
The effect of heat and organic matter on cotton thread.
A true display of Alchemy.

This piece will be in the Morgan's Instructor's show later this summer.

Thursday, May 4, 2017

Things One Can Count On

From the "Farmscape Series"
May Week 2

Yesterday, the first of Grandma's poppies opened up!
Last year the poppies weren't so plentiful and I was worried that they had run their course 
and were on the decline.  But as you can see there are more in the background and 
lots more around the corner. Lots more than last year. 

This artwork is from my Farmscape Series when I created one artwork each week for a 
year (2012) representing the changes on our farm.  
This one is a favorite and is in my family room right now.
It is mixed media collage and measures about 13 x 15".

I love watching the seasons change and the way I can count on the rhubarb to come up early and the dogwood to bloom just as most of the daffodils are ending.  The poppies are the first flowers to appear in the side garden announcing coming attractions:  day lilies, peonies, coreopsis and black eyed susans.