Saturday, November 14, 2015
This week has been a tough one.
My Grandmother at the age of 99.5 passed away peacefully in her sleep. Although our family knew this was coming as over the last few weeks her body has been slowing. Spread out as we are, each are dealing with it in our own ways. My mother and sister were able to be there with her, for which I am grateful. In that I am not able to be physically with my family, I haven been mourning her loss and reflecting on her amazing life here at home.
She made the most beautiful "wycinanki" Polish cut paper. So this morning as I woke, I decided to meditate on her by creating one of my own in tribute.
This is all hand cut, I am including one shot below that give you an idea of scale and process. I hope she is smiling.
Saturday, November 7, 2015
Monday, November 2, 2015
Wednesday, September 30, 2015
Each little creature here is drawn and then cut out, that monster is naked underneath. I have been working on paper doll clothes for him and to hang with these guys he needed a skeleton suit.
In relation to the Illustration Friday Topic:
I have titled this piece "Reachin' for my prize"
I am adding an image here of some of the cut outs laying on a table during the process of this one.
Sunday, August 16, 2015
Friday, July 31, 2015
Thursday, July 30, 2015
Last class with my intro to drawing students yesterday. I gave them options for after last crits and as we stayed in dry media no color all term, they asked for some gouache/watercolor techniques. We did small 5x7 studies. Washes and botanical illustrations, perfectly fitting for the nature theme this week:)
Saturday, July 18, 2015
The timing of this topic speaking to the content I addressed in it. Yesterday I received 4 stuffed to capacity boxes full of nothing short of treasure. My mother was visiting her parents, my grandparents home in Minnesota. I asked her to send me some of the massive archive of photographs, slides, negatives of my late grandfather. He passed in 2008 at 93 after what was nothing short of an incredibly rich life.
There are many amazing stories in my family history, but today I want to tell you about him. He was born in Podlesie, Belarus in 1915. He grew up, married my grandmother and had my mother in that area. They as a family survived the war, concentration camp, shrapnel from a bombing, and made the move to America in 1949-50. My grandfather had been a doctor in Europe, but upon entering the US had to again earn that status. He worked as a house painter until he was able to do that.
He helped establish the Monticello-Big Lake (Minnesota) Hospital and Nursing Home, and he served as Medical Director of the nursing home for many years. He was a kind doctor, a rural doctor, trading food and banjo music for his services at times. He was an Associate Professor at the University of Minnesota involved in research on the heart. He also did medical transcriptions for other physicians at the U of M as he was fluent in several languages (I think our count was 8?) . He was also an Honorary Staff Physician at the St Cloud Hospital.
His fluency in many languages allowed him to research and translate bibles and other texts, and he secretly was a published poet under a pen name in Belarus. He served as Chairman of the School board for 13 years, there was also the fact that he nearly accompanied the US hockey team to Russia for the Olympics.. The list of his professional accomplishments is huge.
There was a whole other side to him as well. He told horribly cheesy jokes, that he would repeat over and over again laughing so infectiously at himself that you could not help but join in. And he had "Hobbies" for lack of a better word. He sailed, taught us to sail, played chess and earned the title of master chess player. He was a HAM radio operator. He dabbled in electronics, collecting, building, repairing radios, cameras, and phonographs. He built the family's first television set. later in life in his 70's and 80's he dissected and repaired Apple computers to send back to those without in Belarus.
This leads me back to my treasure, through out his entire life, there was a camera around his neck or in his hand. He photographed nearly every thing, but some of his favorite subjects were Minnesota landscape, flora, my grandmother (who was beautiful) and people in his life which ranged from us his family to those at the nursing home, to vendors at the flea markets he faithfully attended and supported. Had a dark room in the house where he developed almost all of his own photos too. I am including a self portrait he took with my grandmother here when they first settled in Minnesota and another self portrait from later in his life (looking very stern which was not a natural expression as his smile was huge. I am beyond excited to begin to make my way through the thousands of photos I now have, my treasure.
Wednesday, July 15, 2015
I like when nature goes a bit untamed in a yard.
After all, much like a cage for animals, and like many Southern California yards it is contained by an old chain link fence.