I hate artificial smells & perfumes and anything too heavily scented, even if it is natural. Overly strong smells make me twitchy and sneezy. So when I grabbed a couple of these amber glass spray bottles, I decided to try out my own natural cleaning concoction.
I started with a large glass jar and filled it with white vinegar. I dropped in two cinnamon sticks
Then, I let the vinegar solution sit for two weeks in a sunny spot in my kitchen. It turned this lovely amber color after just a couple of days. I let is soak until the cinnamon and orange smell were noticeable over the vinegar smell. When it was ready to use, I filled a spray bottle with half water, half vinegar solution. I then added a few drops of Dr. Bronner’s Pure-Castille citrus soap. I use it on my counter tops, sink, cabinets, bathroom, table — anything needing a wipe down.
I’ll be needing this spray in large quantities in the next couple of weeks, as this is my current view. This is from my dining room table, which is currently located in my living room, just in front of the fire place. Gus is loving the ability to snag fun items out of boxes and tubs (i.e. sponges, paintbrushes, cups, spoons…)
Pray to to Gods of house renovation for me. More on all of this later.
Sea Change, mixed media, 18×24″, 2010.
This combination of painting, collage, and drawing came about as a result of a weird dream I had where this woman was sailing away on a Viking ship. I added in surreal details to add to the dream-like idea. It recently found a new home, in a friend’s new home.
Garbage Landscape, 12 x 16″, mixed media, 2019.
Pretty self-explanatory image. The clouds are tissue paper with paint thickly applied. The ground is corrugated cardboard with the top layer peeled off, and painted.
Hockey Chicken, 12 x 18″, Mixed Media, 2018.
Last summer I spent a fabulous week with other TAB (teaching for artistic behaviors) art teachers in Boston for a week-long grad class. We shared ideas, listened to guest speakers, and had glorious studio time.
This artwork began with the just the chicken head. It is a lino cut block print on orange paper, with drawn details. I started this, because at the time, my then 3-year old son’s favorite insult was, “Chicken head!” I made a series of just floating chicken head prints on painted scrap papers. I started to build the background with blue painted watercolor paper and layered and painted newspapers from Boston.
The chicken’s body is made from cut painted papers, construction paper, and construction paper that is draw on.
The flower blooms and stems are cut from painted papers, with drawn details with bamboo pen and ink.
Ayeka, Mixed media, 9 x 12″, 2019.
Ayeka? Where are you?
The inspiration for the artwork comes from various things- my love for all things science and the art of diagrams, for one. The idea of skin and a barrier to outside forces, and a sermon on Ayeka, delivered via video conferencing, due to a howling blizzard of a day in Iowa.
Tropical Cat, Mixed Media – collage, Gelli printing, ink drawing, watercolor, 2018.
I have gotten so far behind on documenting completed artworks – there will be a spree of posts coming up. This one I completed when I was in Boston last summer for the TAB (Teaching Artistic Behaviors) art teacher grad class extraordinary week of learning and art making. They had the most glorious studio set up for us art teachers to use. This cat was inspired by my daughter’s love of cats and making them in her own art. I also have lived with my fair share of lovely gray cats in my life.
Mona, Collage, watercolor, marker, color pencil, 2019.
I started this Mona Lisa homage years ago, as a magazine face collaged on to a black marker drawing. At that time, I was sorely missing the coastal parts of North Carolina, which had been our home state for eight years.
I just rediscovered this unfinished piece in my studio, and added the watercolor and color pencil this week.
South Dakota, Embroidery, acrylic paint, denim, pine needles, 2019.
Last summer, I enjoyed a week with family, just outside Rapid City, South Dakota. The porch offered a serene view of the Black Hills. I sat and meditatively stitched on the legs of my cut-off jeans, as my children, nieces, and nephews played.
PB & J, Embroidery, felted wool, acrylic paint, 2019. Chelsea Hayes.
I have been enjoying a different type of mixed media lately – embroidery, felting, and painting. If embroidery is like drawing with a needle and thread, then felting is like painting with roving and a needle. My son promptly claimed this art for his room.
Life has been hectic lately, as it always will be. I choose to keep myself busy, but this is a different level of busy. I am also prepping for a show in April, and so I have to really force myself to squeeze out more art making time.
I am at a week-long class for TAB (teaching for artistic behaviors) art teachers in Boston – TAB summer institute at Mass Art. I am working alongside and learning from the pioneers of art education, every day for a week!
I’m listening, sharing, questioning, wrestling with ideas, and honing my favorite art form of all – teaching. It’s incredible.
What’s better than being around my teaching heroes all week?
The easy access to seafood? Almost.
Sight seeing in Boston? Almost.
For me, the creative conversations with other TAB art educators and the open studio time have been the most valuable.
I’ve been working on some fun art this week, things I’m actually jazzed about. It’s been a while since I felt this way about my own artwork – hence the down tick in the Postcard Project.