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Back in a Nice, Warm Black

My new website is up and running.  It is still under construction, but more photos, videos and good stuff will be showing up soon.  I’ve been on hiatus these past few years, taking care of life and putting out fires, and I can now focus on greater things to come while the embers are just smoldering.  Check out my website and chat me up.  Www.godivaart.com.  Count your blessings and drink a tumbler of something leaded – life is too short to use short glasses.

Summer Breeze…

With coffee in hand, I am sitting outside waiting for rain. Just a sprinkle to cool down the scorching heat of summer. Still in my night clothes at 3 p.m. And trying to get motivated, I tolerate the heat outside on my back porch, private and green, flourishing plant life from these summer showers. Herb garden is plush and fruitful. Vegetables, not-so much. The summer was too extreme and each new leaf withered without bearing anything yummy. The one puny, green tomato that endured was maliciously snitched from me by a hungry fruit rat. Under my watchful eyes, a mere 20 feet away, the slinky critter plucked it and ran into the night. I think I heard it laughing at me… My nurturing efforts were abolished in one clean sweep from this bandit. At least the caterpillars have abandoned the basil for now and caprese salad is abundant. We are now a gluten-free household and even though I miss my Saltiness, we are glad for the rain to nourish the herbs and flowers, making the temperature and the stagnant breeze a bit sweeter.

My studio has remained unoccupied for months and it looks as sad as I am for abandoning it. The unfinished work stares at me each day as I peek in to jog some inspiration and motivation. Thoughts are brewing and ideas are abound. Energy is at an all time low. The mundane household duties have over run my time, mixing in with somewhat mandatory social engagements and work that actually pays the bills.

This is the week, though, that breaks the cycle. Things are coming to fruition and time will be allotted to unleash the creative flow again. It seems I’ve painted everything except canvas these past few months, and even as I admire the newness of the media room, kitchen and front bathroom, it fails to fulfill any artistic need. The living room will come together soon, as scheduled, but will definitely come behind time in my lonely studio. A garage sale is in order here to alleviate the clutter bogging down our energy. I believe we have just too much furniture, for when we are in our creative mode we have the fewest guests to utilize it. My adoration of antique chairs must be squelched for my own good!

For tonight, work is scheduled for me and Nolen’s melodies will fill the house while I am gone. I will plan tomorrow’s clutter resolution for a productive weekend with my oils and brushes. Dinner is in the oven and I am 3 tall cups into a pot of coffee. Ready, set, go!

Summer Season of Change

Summer feels like it is here…hot, hot and more hot days.  Tomatoes are nestling in the Topsy Turvey, herbs are abundant, jasmine is in full bloom.  Last year’s sunflowers are poking up towards the sun and spatterings of clouds.  The sun is scorching and I am desperately trying not to get a farmers tan to go along with my outdoor nurturing of new blossoms.

My babies- the human ones are nearing preschool and it will be a sad but welcomed time, for my studio calls and I am perpetually drained of energy for all else but nursery rhymes and the beckons of sticky mouths.  Their cherub faces will belong to other teachers, caregivers and their real Mommy and Daddy.  I have found a way, though, to keep them close to heart and home for myself to cherish, as they are subjects for my newest series.  They will always be my babies – too.

On other pages of my tot-filled brain is the note that I neglected to post pictures of the last ukulele bag I completed last summer.  Uggh.  That chapter closed months ago with my blogging pages and intellectual thought.  I forgive myself in between silent recitation of “Goodnight Moon” verses and Barney tunes.   I will post today the wave bag I finished and relinquished last summer.  A timely post for the upcoming season of sun, beaches and abundant scorn from Mother Nature.

I have a day planned to the fullest with errands and sunblock before I can retire to my brushes and oils for some air conditioning and reconditioning of my Barney brain.

Big Wave

New Work

I am back in cyber-circulation, folks.  It has been many, many months and my thoughts have been a whirlwind of chaos over my head.  Last year went out and the new year came in quietly, shuffling in wearing fuzzy slippers.  Now, though, the overdue inspiration is flooding into my quiet space and creativity is abound!  My senses are alert and every waking hour I am dreaming of putting brush to canvas,  unnamed colors mixed on my palette, the smells of oils and turpentine.

I have little time actually in the studio, for life calls for my attention – loudly.  I have begun, though, to ignore the beckoning somewhat, to deal with the allure of my dreams.  My studio is lively again, smelling of those rich studio smells mixed with coffee – and fabric softener  (by day, it poses as a laundry room for my domestic alter ego).   I have started a new series of figurative work while working on some nature pieces I started a while back.   I have abandoned the encaustic projects I was working on last summer, as my studio lacks good enough ventilation and lighting over the work table.   I have traded ventilation for space – this may be the reason for the creative flood going on here…

I have been working more with glazes for this series and am having a lot of fun allowing myself more room for color experimentation.  The drying time in-between glazes allows me to go back and forth between paintings, creating continuity in movement, color and style.   I am looking for a softer finish and richer depth of color in this series as compared to the bolder  impasto style in my last few paintings.  The figures I am using will benefit more from a softer stroke and color palette, focusing on the expressions of the figures and what they are conveying to the viewer.  I will post images soon.

Week of reflection

Well, it has been a couple of weeks since I last posted, so I must take a few minutes to type and update my blog on my time of rest and reflection.  The ukulele gig bags went to NAMM last week and I will begin a new one when delivered – probably this weekend sometime.  The 3 completed for the show seemed to be well received and hopefully will prove marketability.  I will post pictures of the show when they arrive.

My architectural abstract piece is still in the works, awaiting the architectural components to be incorporated within the next week or so.  I have found a  reference to use that will bring the composition to the desired emotive completion, as I chose to do this project upon moving back to where I grew up.  Unsure of whether my heart was here when moving, the landmarks here caused a wave of nostalgia and memories, peaceful and traumatic.  The energy is still here of my childhood and can not be ignored as long as I am here.  The work has slowed a bit, though, as my studio fan self-destructed last week, causing drying time in the immense Florida humidity to go very ssssllllllowly.

I have the perfect reference in hand for the next portrait piece, so brush will be put to canvas this next week for that project.  It took some searching to locate the photo, as it was shot a few years back.  I have wanted to utilize it further for some time, this being the opportunity I was waiting for.

I have composed during the week my next few projects.  My encaustic piece will resume as soon as the larger studio area is set up with the proper ventilation.  I am eager to arrange a more productive space for working several projects simultaneously without tripping over easel legs or puppy dog tails.  My little princess likes her mommy-and-me time, but needs a pillow to perch upon that is not underfoot.

My sunflowers are beginning to bud and grow substantial stalks to support their blooms.  I am hoping to see their golden faces within the next week, welcoming me home and into their garden space.  The mockingbirds will most certainly desecrate them immediately after opening, so I will watch diligently for the arrival of their blooms.   These birds have feasted on our tomatoes and are moving toward the blackberries, even under the watch of my rubber coral snakes.  They are not afraid of them – or me.  I do believe I narrowly escaped an attack while repositioning Jake the Snake today.  I will not turn my back on them again, as I have seen what they’ve done the the squirrels in the area.  Jake must have a mate, I have decided – but later, when the birds are resting and do not see us coming.

Tiki, tiki, tiki

I finished painting the third ukulele case today – unfortunately, I did not get to the fourth, as planned.  Time was crunched over the weekend due to, well, life.  My tiki dude adorned with exotic blooms was sealed and ready to go only an hour or so after my deadline – sorry, again, Cyndi for the wait… I did enjoy our time together in the studio, though.  The uke cases are on route to NAMM with LoPrinzi Guitars… Hope to have images from the show to share next week.[slideshow]

The pics are, as usual, not so great – details are lost in the translation.  Must get a better digital camera – or at least one from this past decade.  Even my phone takes better images.  I am just not savvy enough to figure out how to get them out… I paint.

My abstract architectural piece will be continued next and a portrait started this week.  Canvas is primed and ready to go.  Need a soma and coffee and I’m ready to roll…

Uke 2

This is the second ukulele bag, complete.  Again, I will say that the image is not of great quality and does not show the colors properly, but the idea is there.  I have begun the third bag this evening.  The work flow is trickling through, as the coffee is still brewing… Will refuel and get back to the task at hand.

Earlier this evening I attended the graduation party of the daughter of my good friend, Carol Ann – it was pleasing to see her family in its entirety again.  It is unbelievable to me to think its been 20 years or so since the last time…   A good time was had by all – congratulations, Amber 🙂  I admit, though, I knew it was time to abandon the gathering when the karaoke started up.  I doubt anyone would appreciated my vocal stylings or selections other than the babies I nanny.  Neither Hush Little Baby or the theme song to Gilligan’s Island were on the karaoke list anyway…

NAMM

Finished working on the second uke bag for Augustino LoPrinzi Guitars to take to the NAMM show with them.  I will finish painting another this weekend.  My hopes to complete four before Monday are dwindling, as I have a graduation party to attend this evening.   I may have to send one bag back naked, unadorned… and three will be the magic number, once again.  I will post pictures tomorrow…

It is entirely too hot to enjoy the outdoors today… My thermometer measured 98 degrees in the shade – 113 in the sun yesterday.  Not checking today for it will only get worse this summer.  My delicate complexion has suffered through much abuse already this spring and sunblock doesn’t seem to serve its sole purpose well enough to protect my finish.   Since I can not seem to avoid the need to function during daylight hours, I’ll be staying in my cave until dusk.  Then we will feed and grow motivated again.  The night suits my inner clock perfectly fine – now, if the rest of the world would only conform, I’d have it made 🙂

Studio time

I am working on a new ukulele bag … should be completed tomorrow.  I will have another one done this weekend- hopefully two, ready to go to the NAMM show with Augustino LoPrinzi Guitars.  My own work will be continued on Monday night, after a bit of neglect.  The previous abstracted architectural piece will continue, as well as a new portrait will be in the works .

My sunflowers are sprouting up and their leaves are growing up towards the sky.  They have become accustomed to daily watering from the hose, unfortunately, as rain has been scarce.  A spattering of droplets on occasion seems to be all that Mother Nature has planned for us here in Largo during this warm spring season.   Hurricane season is upon us, though, and all will be nourished well.

I have roasted chicken in the oven that awaits my approval, so I must abandon my cave and tend to the family needs.  I will finish uke case #2 late this evening.  Then a well deserved bowl of popcorn and a movie while snuggled deep into my Temperpedic with Baby will be my reward for todays work.  Happy painting to all…  🙂

Ukuleles, popsicles and google

[slideshow]I finished the ukulele case I was working on this Memorial Day weekend.  I am pleased with the results – I think it’s pretty.  A little different than my last work and refreshing.   Spring has sprung and I am digging the flowers and greenery everywhere – for at least a few more weeks, so flowers were my choice of subject matter here.  The photo is dark – apologies.

I held true to my vow to stay in at all costs this holiday weekend.  I enjoyed the peace of home, the smell of paint in my studio and Popsicles with my beloved.   Later tonight I will water my sunflowers and hope to not disturb the garter snake that has claimed my back yard.  She visits me every evening before dusk, poking her head above the grass to stare me down for a moment, then goes on her way toward the garden again.  My yard is also home to a beautiful scarlet king snake that nearly gave me a heart attack the other night as she slithered up next to me and right under my picnic table -near my shoes.  Who can remember the poem when face-to-face with a possible coral snake?  That’s right – not me.  I will never forget it now – Red touch yellow, kill a fellow.  Head of black, get back.  Anyway, thank you, Lorie for saving my life with the all powerful google.