Monday, December 31, 2007

Out With the Old..goodbye 2007

Last year Jill Badonsky sent out her newsletter with a great way to end the year. I took to it like peanut butter takes to jelly. I offer it up again this year, and this time I am posting it for all to see. It's all in good fun and forces you to think back a bit which is something I'm not so good at. I generally can't remember what I ate for breakfast today. For that matter I can't remember where I put the instructions to Jill's writing prompt. Off the cuff it goes like this, answer each of the following prompts:

man of the year-Danny. My son. I watched in full and complete angst as he would stumble and fall, stumble and fall, stumble and fall. I cried when he did. I smiled as he was able to smile. I prayed and begged for him to be whole again. Unfortunately, it consumed my year. But what do you do when you madly love that which you cared for all of his 19 years. You love and support and cry on their behalf. He will be my man of the year for 2008, too, but in a whole new context. This year, like the baby robin first taking flight he will leap, I will cover my eyes and turn away, and much to both of our suprise, his beautiful wings will catch the breath of God and he will be on his way.

woman of the year- Rhonda. This is a woman who at one point when I barely knew her, held me in her arms as I wept like a baby over my impending divorce. She is now a regular in my daily thoughts. She lifts me up, she laughs and cries when appropriate and more than anything she helps me care for my Spirit. We have big work to do together.

poignant moment of the year-January 11, 2007, 11:00. "You are now divorced. " How on Earth the Universe arranged for it to be just Martin and I and a judge in a huge courtroom with him on his side of the aisle and me on mine, not another soul to witness the dissolution of marriage, I will never know. Poignant, painful beyond words. It was done. His beautiful sad face, the river of tears that was heaving my chest and this perky little blonde judge who doesn't know us from Adam declared it done. It will stay with me forever, the day I divorced that man. The significance of the date and time indicate New Beginnings, it didn't feel it at the time but as I approach a new January 11 I can see my growth, and his. New beginnings, indeed.

movie-This is hard because I don't love movies so I will go with the one that has affected the entire world: The Secret. I have long been a believer in the law of attraction. I have known its power. The makers of this movie have done many people a great service in teaching the power of your personal thoughts.

book of the year-Two choices: Secrets of a Millionaire Mind by T Harv Eker...excellent for changing the way you handle your money thoughts and money actions. Fascinating and powerful, it affects every day now. Secondly, and I still have about 50 pages to read: Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert. I know, I know, I was a little slow getting on the band wagon for this one and now that I have it in hand I stand ON TOP of the band wagon singing the praises for this book. See, I AM Liz Gilbert. She nailed it in the introduction when she discusses her marriage. From that point I was hooked. She nailed it when she discusses her views on religion/spirituality. She nailed ME when she was not letting go of her control issues. Se nailed me when she describes her miserable failings at meditation and how frustrated she became with it. And oh, when she described the pizza in Naples, well, that's just too personal to discuss here.

dining experience of the year-The Old Post Office Cafe, Mt. Vernon, Maine. A tiny converted postoffice on the shore of a serene lake. The specials are posted on the huge blackboard behind the counter. Grab a breakfast burrito, Carpe Diem coffee and sit on the screened-in porch while you mingle with the townies. Heaven in a wheat wrap.

vacation of the year-VAY-CAY-SHUN, heard of it before. Haven't done it in years however I did take a lovely day trip to Belfast which I posted about.

learning experience of the year-Letting Go seemed to be the theme for 2007. Can I just say I failed miserably?! I think I will take it on again for like, say, three months. I have released some things on the earthly level but my spirit has been gripping these same things with white knuckles saying "NOOOOOOOO, don't leave me" therefore keeping this heavy baggage shackled to my life. It is being whispered in my ear continuously, "Let go". And damn, I am trying!

acknowledge people I met-This is easier. Jes Berry, Leah, Heidi, Melba, Mindy, Angela, Tori, Lauri Gilcrest, Debba, Kat Logan, Jim, Heartwood College students (too numerous to mention, all wonderful people)

people I released-Have we discussed this already? Not good at this. How about if I say I did release at least a handful of people, I won't tell you their significance, I will just say their names so that it is written out of my soul: Sheri, Roland, Carrie, Denise, Reynald...

when joy seemed prevalent-each and every time I drive/drove to Kennebunk to my school. My Happy Place. It washed over me like a thick, sweet honey. My whole being just relaxed and all of my "issues", as I will politely call them, sat in the back seat of my car strapped in with duct tape over their mouths. No problems, no worries, no nothing until I was done my day of art school. Without fail as I got in my car I could see him. Issues. There he was, wriggling and wrangling himself out of his carseat and peeling the duct tape off his big mouth, ready and eager to invade my thoughts. "DAMN YOU!" I protested right out loud, "next time you're riding in the trunk."

Okay, there it is. Now you do it. There is more to this writing prompt and I will offer it up next week. Go ahead and link to my post if you end up deciding to try this.

I wish you all a happy, healthy, beautiful 2008. Dance, my friends, just dance.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Happy Holidays from Sunflower Studio!

It's Nut Puff day here at the homestead. I've been making these delightful little melt-in-your-mouth treats since I was sixteen years old. I ripped the recipe out of a Seventeen magazine in 1984 and have been torturing my family with them ever since.

Nut Puffs

1 c. butter, softened
1 tsp. vanilla
1/3 c. confectionary sugar
2 c. flour
1 c. ground, minced or chopped walnuts (depends on your own fancy how fine you do this)

*You'll need one additional cup of the confectionary sugar for later...

Combine butter and sugar, beat by hand until well blended. Add nuts. Add vanilla. Beat in flour. Shape in to small balls (approximately 1 1/2" in size) and place on a baking sheet about 1" apart. Bake them for 20 minutes at 325 degrees. Remove from baking sheet and while the lil' buggers are still are still warm do this: Put that reserved one cup of confectionary sugar into a brown paper bag and throw the puffs into the bag and give it a good shake. Be gentle, you don't want them breaking up because then you'd have to eat all those small parts by yourself! (eeek!)Anyway, shake the nut puffs to coat them with the confectionary sugar, remove them from the bag by using a slotted spoon.

Tah-Dah....Holiday Delight! This recipe makes 72 little pieces of heaven. I dare you to eat just one. I generally make two or three batches right before Christmas, any more than that and my waistline explodes.

Thinking of you my bloggy buddies. Have a great holiday, see you when it's over. *hug*

Thursday, December 13, 2007


Hey, did you know it costs less in megawatt energy hours to use a dark screen? My younger brother introduced me to (Powered by just this week. He informed me of this energy saving tip. Being a lover of Mama Earth I jumped on board and switched my homepage to Blackle. Same information, dark screen. Click here if your're curious about seeing a pix of my handsome young brother, he looks like a young Randy Travis.

Upon reading the info provided by I thought I'd give darkening my blog a go. I try to be conscientious of my choices in order to preserve the Earth that I so love but I don't want to be a pest to those who do read my blog so the question is this:

1) Does it bother to you read against a dark background??
2) Will you consider using in an effort to conserve energy and therefore Mama Earth?

Here's the tag: energy one search at a time (THEY TOLD ME TO SAY THAT!)

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Be Authentic...

This is a series titled Authenticity. Watercolor paper as my canvas. Acrylic, chalk, effy stuff, you know, mixed media. Two things happened that made me think about being authentic. It went like this.

I was thinking of how to gift my young teenage friends at Heartwood College of Art. There are four of them and they have made such an impression on my heart. I am den mother. That's what they call me. They ask my opinion. We have deep discussions, I buy them chocolate.

"What could I do" I kept asking myself "They are all so different." Take Anna for example. Her hair is pink, purple, green, blue and maybe even brown. I don't know what color her real hair is, she loves to add spark to her hair. She loves the movie the Labryinth and loves to swear.

JoAnna has hair that reaches her bum. She has huge brown eyes and a beautiful smile. She attends church faithfully, speaks softly and carefully. She's gentle and focused and accepts everyone.

Nathaniel is a spark! He's done every drug known to man and is a walking pharmacologist. He admits to his downfalls and he is stressed out a LOT for someone his age. He is convinced of his short time here on earth and he is a DOLL!! He won my heart almost in the first hour I met him. His pain reminds me of someone close to me. And I can't forget that he's a poet, too.

Desaraie is just so sweet, the face of a little fairy. "I'm not gonna lie" she said on the first day "I can't draw." She is going to school for photography but her heart is with her many pets. The dog, the fish, the cat. Oh her tender heart and her lazy boyfriend have taught me tons.

See, they're different these kids, and I want them to know that different is good. I want them to stay different, keep their qualities even when the world says they shouldn't. It's hard sometimes because you just want to fit in but really now, how do you put a square peg in a round hole? I wish someone had told me how to keep my authenticity. I am just now returning to myself.

In honor of my friends in color and design. I love you.

11 x 14...different is good.

The next two came to be in this way:

I've had a few days off now and am still absorbing the new energy from my spiritual retreat. Yesterday I spent a little bit of time on the net checking my horoscope etc. I went to check Celia Fenn's monthly report of the energies for this month as well. She had a message about the request to be authentic. It was a detailed account of how good it is for your soul and how to go about it. The words touched me. It was what I needed to hear.

Living in small town America can really squelch a persons growth. When people glance at you sideways and then lift their hand to cover their whispers it cuts deep and steals from you. I have always felt different and finally when I decided to just be me the whispering began. It's a struggle that I want to win.

Below are two paintings based on the information from the message of Celia Fenn.

Don't Resist the Flow, 10" x 10", mixed media

You Don't Need to Fit In, 10" x 10", mixed media

Then it was on to fimo fun. I made covered bobby pins, earrings, necklaces, pendants, and MORE! Now I just have to package them.

And then....
Okay, so I don't generally end my entries with a giNORMOUS picture of my face, but here I am in all my authentic glory. Heh heh. I woke up happy and willing to just go with the flow.

I slipped out of my pink polka dot jammies (did you have any doubt about my bed attire?) into some jeans a smart black t-shirt and my favorite denim-go-to-studio overshirt. I donned the new earrings I made and embellished the overshirt with a pink fimo pin. The hair, she called for ponytails and I was thrilled to discover my hair has gr0wn enough to comply.

HERE I AM WORLD! Authentically me. Silly. Quirky. Unusually happy (considering). Still sporting blue eyes and adding crows feet and laugh lines daily.

Tam I am. Huh, whooda thunk it?

Learn your place in the dance of life and go with the flow. Be authentic.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Attach Yourself to Joy

This art titled Stand Tall, 16 x 20" is acrylic mixed media piece on canvas, it is one of a series of three. I did this during AEDM and it took a really long time to complete for some silly reason. But it is done now. It made me happy as I worked on it. I love the background swirls.I love that trees aren't yellow but this one is. I love that dirt isn't red but my dirt is. I love the swirl leaves in the trees. I love that leaves aren't blue but mine are. Going up the trunk of the tree is the words "realize your importance". In the leaves of the tree it says " give a good quality", "Try to do good" and "love yourself". Ground yourself....Stand Tall. JOY!

I spent the weekend at a spiritual retreat in New Jersey. I went with a really special girlfriend. I feel rejuvenated, refreshed and full of love and life. I promised God I would live joyfully (among other things), he has promised to walk with me always. Ahhhh, I needed time with like-minded people. I needed to dig deep into my soul and I did. I came away empowered and wanting to empower others. Joy!This handsome dude was playing Brazilian music, maybe Mexican...anyway, on the streets of Salem Mass last month when I did a brief visit there. I am such a sucker for street musicians. I was swept away by his music, the romantic staccato beat and (he he) the lovely dark hair. I bought his CD as my daughter stood down street rolling her eyes and covering her face groaning, "Mom, not again." Now I listen to this music as I create. JOY!

What doors will open for you when you own your joy? Another group hug? I thought so....


Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Fluffy Stuff-just for funsies!

For you my bloggy friends. Isn't this hand and paintbrush image so cool? I was about to use it this morning when I thought of you. Maybe she'd like one of these, says I. I answered myself, Yes, she would. So have at it. Use this wherever your lil' heart desires. Click. Copy. Paste. Glue. Glitter.

Think of me when this you see. He he he.

This is the front of my 2008 datebook. No more expensive datebooks for me. I took a freebie at the bank, covered its logo with my stickers, added pretty scrapbooking tabs to divide it to my liking and VOILA (btw~that's French for voila) 2008 life in a book.

The next pix is the back of the book, a gentle reminder: Life Life. If Kelly Rae can put her life schedule on big yellow posterboard then so can I!! If Mindy and Leah can design their own journal/datebook/lifebinder then so can I!!

I'm feeling kind of silly today. I can see a light at the end of the tunnel and man-oh-man it is amazing!! When life clicks, the cogs match up, the steam starts pouring out and life takes a sharp right turn that sets you off in a new direction suddenly the air seems fresher, the colors seem brighter and oddly enough even my coffee tastes better (impossible!)

Blogging is good.

Group hug now.


I'm off to school.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Catching Up on Art Every Day

Hi Everyone! I haven't fallen away, just been busy getting a grip on the holidays and whatnot. Life sure is a whirlwind sometimes but at least I've been able to be creative every day. I don't think I can properly share all the creativity I've put out to the Universe lately but I can at least share these with you... Enjoy.

More sketches from my work days. Negative space. Positive space. A copy of a coffee cup from a Bully Hill Wine poster. A bird design from one of our Italian chicken pitchers at the cafe. Nothing too difficult here, just keeping my hand and brain busy whilst I wait for the first table of guests to arrive.

Oooooh. Fufillment. Another Klimt piece. This one is again one inch by one and one half inches big (or small). I really enjoy doing these little take-offs. Fun. Challenging. More to come, I'm sure of it.

Pink fimo beads, hand blended and layered in a pretty variation of pink/reds and smacking with yellow and white. See here the beads, pins and pendant potential!

I also got busy making holiday fimo pins with rhinestones and crystals. I have hats and trees. If you are interested they are available for sale. 1-1 1/2" tall for $8 each I'll be happy to pop one in the mail to you.

Sewing. *sigh* How I love my sewing machine. I took the old girl out and set her up. See, it's like this. I have to do a very homemade Christmas so I hit the big JoAnn Fabric black Friday sale and came out with some real purty things.
Ol' Miss Muffet wants to have a pink kitchen some day so I decided to make an oven mitt, four coasters and a matching apron to go along with some pink coffee mugs. It will make her sweet smile shine. (Okay, that and a Louis Vuitton fake duffle that her Dad will pick up for her, he he).

Speaking of Miss Muffett, here she is!! This is one of her senior pix. She doesn't like this photo but I think it's great. Love the red in her hair, wish I could get mine to do that!

Danny Brother won't let me take his photo. Wish I could show you how cute he is, too. Tall, dark and handsome.

Remember the handmade Christmas I mentioned?? Here is more oven mitts and hot pads. These will got to Cindy-Lou-Who my loverly sister in law, my former Mom-in-law who still thinks I'm that cats pajamas, my dear Mama and one set will go on sale here at my website. I love the muted country colors of these and gosh-darn don't I love polka dots and dingle balls.

Well there, that's it for now. I really did do other creative things, like baking dark chocolate thumprint cookies, onion tainted mashed potatoes, a poster for Thanksgiving at the college, poetry and a whole mish-mash of things.

I hope you're well. I'm wishing you cozy autumn nights by a blazing fire with sketchbook in hand and cocoa in the other. Enjoy this blessed season.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

I Saved the Best for Last...scroll down.

You may remember that I started this Tarot card last week. I poked at it a few times over the last few days. I added some watercolor pencils strokes that need to be played with using my brushes. This one, as I mentioned before, is a work in progress.
Day 8

More Vespa sketches from the restaurant, on the days I work this is all I can muster.
Day 9

Now remember the Red Shoe entry I did? I started going wild with shoe sketches so these next three have a theme going. How about these bunny slippers? There seems to be a shadow on the scan, but you get the gist of it.
Day 10

More slippers. More bunnies. How many of us tired mothers put on a pair of pink fluffy slippers when we get home and our feet are aching? I don't usually bother to remove my socks, I leave them on, stripes and all.
I kind of wish I hadn't gotten so bold with my charcoal, but what's done is done.
Day 11
Blue, blue, blue suede shoes. Can't you hear the King sing? This one was really fun to make and in person it's a great piece. The scanner isn't doing it justice.
Day 12
Save the best for last, right? Yesterday the art school went on a group field trip to the Boston Museum of Fine Arts. Amtrak and then the Green Line subway got us there. We had a super time taking in the work of the Masters and some amazing modern day artists including a huge wall mural by actor Dennis Hopper.
Many times I caught myself with mouth agape. Being in the presence of these important pieces of work left me kind of numb.
One of my favorite artists is Gustav Klimt because of the emotions that I feel when see his work. I literally get all wrapped up in his this painting looking at the loving embrace and the peace in her face as he lovingly puts his lips to her cheek. Oh *sigh*'s so beautiful.
So this painting is NOT in Boston, it is Vienna, but the museum store sells a silk scarf with this painting on it and in the store the scarf is framed. I kept going back to it and going back to it and going back to it. Subconsciously, that which we find ourselves attracted to is usually our soul speaking to us. "Pay attention, Tammy, what is the message here?" And I know the answer to my reaction of this painting but won't reveal it here.
I came home and googled some more of Klimt's work. I now have a goal to buy a reproduction of this and other Klimt works. His style is something that truly resonates with me. I need to read more of his history.
I printed a pix of his The Kiss work and laid it in front of me and got busy.
This is my version of the kiss. I thought I'd challenge myself. This work is... 1" x 1 1/2" ....yes, for you who are bad with inch by one and one half inches... I did it on a scrapbookers chipboard piece. Gesso, acrylic, colored pencil and marker. Looking at it in this size isn't so great, but when it's so tiny in real life, it's a great take off! It took me about three hours start to finish and I'm certain his original painting took him three months to finish, but I am happy with my result.
Today Klimt, tomorrow.....Renoir?

Thursday, November 8, 2007

The Challenge Continues

Here I go again, my entries for AEDM. Leah says anything goes and Monday's don't generally go so great therefore I opted for a quick doodle before dashing off to my job. It's just a doodle but I wanted to prove to the Universe that I am really trying to do Art Every Day. I mean it.

so this is it...Day 5

Now this is a bit more interesting. In Color & Design class Tuesday the Teach finally let us do the hands on thing. We are having to prove our knowledge of mixing colors, this time with Fimo clay. We started with red, blue, yellow black and white and had to blend from there. Once our chosen colors were mixed she showed us jelly rolls and how to make specific patterns. Now I am in love with all things pink therefore I was pretty pleased with the pink, lime green and chocolate beads but I got lots of oohs an ahhs from the black sunflower beads I made. The smaller black stained glass pattern is interesting as well and I would choose it for my second favorite. Do you see the round disk? That is the large pattern that is inside of the black sunflower beads. I reduced it four times. Fimo is fun and slightly painful for these cold, Maine hands. I actually had bruises on the pads of my palms. Whaaaaah! Day 6

Cloth, Paper, Scissors to the rescue! I love that publication and always manage to try at least one project and get inspired by many others. This month I decided to try Miss Kelly Rae's method for producing art. I have long been curious about HOW she did it. Mind you, I don't have interest in reproducing her fabulous angel/girls, but I did want to know about her methods and now I can really play with it!

This red shoe is inspired by two things: Miss Muffetts love affair with shoes and Paul Simons Graceland album (I adore both Miss Muffett and Graceland). There are layers of scrapbooking paper which you can't see well on the scan and then I painted the child-like foot and shoe using Miss Muffetts favorite chunky heeled style and then added glitter diamonds to the soles like the song: Diamonds on the Soles of Her Shoes, my fave song off the album. All in all in real life it's a great piece. I'm not convinced it's museum worthy but some art is for self, right? RIGHT! And oh, this shoe piece is 6 x 8 on watercolor paper and involves some effy, charcoal, acrylic and glue.

I was on a role yesterday!! I love to keep little scraps of watercolor paper hanging about the studio (neatly organized of course) so while I was on a tear with Kelly Rae's method I decided to do an underpainting with the scrapbooking papers again. Then, having seen UllaBanulla's blog yesterday I was enamored with the loose Spencerian style of writing and thought I'd try a bird using a minimal amount of strokes. Tah-Dah. Tiny little birdie is 4 x 6 with all of the same ingredients as the shoe piece, and hey, oddly enough, no words on this one and I really love to add words. Hmmm, very strange.

So the shoe and the bird quantify my Day 7 art and truthfully I also worked on two larger pieces that were undone. But since I lost the chord to my camera I can't transfer pix to my computer until I locate it. So no pix....

The best art of all. Miss Muffet used to LOVE to sit and use the Paint program on my computer. She made millions of digital doodles. This little piggy face is of my pot-bellied pet Abby Rose. I cut it out and keep her little face taped on my computer but beyond I was unpacking from the big move I located one of Hill's many love notes to me. This is from when she was about nine or ten. *sigh* ...sniff, sniff... I showed it to her last night and she just laughed and shook her head. Harumph, KIDS!
Hey, I'm doing all right with the AEDM so far. How are all of you doing? Keep on keeping on... till next time.

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Art Every Day contributions...

What follows is my entries for Art Every Day Month as suggested by dear Leah. I apologize that they are not full blown attempts at canvases or magnificent pieces of jewelry. I am happy if I get in a sketch or manage to complete my art homework as you will see by my images below.

Day One: I decided a while ago to design my own tarot deck with personal symbology and images. This is the first card and how synchronistic that I started it on day one of AEDM. The card is The Fool, number 1 in the traditional tarot deck. I have begun the first layer of color. You will watch as this watercolor image grows to be a many layered piece.

Day Two and Day Three:

Vespa sketches. Yes, when I should be washing down tables at my waitressing job I spend my time sketching the Vespas that hang from the walls. My boss collects them and I find them fascinating, so I sketch them on the back of scrap paper. I plan to do some art based on these sketches.

Day Four:

Complimentary Colors homework assignment. This is not my best work but it was a neccessary to prove my knowledge of blending colors. I finished this today and it took forever and I don't love it, but I need the grade!!

This is it for now ladies. I'm moved into my new crib and I have a HUGE studio space until the end of April at which time I become mobile again. Two more classes for this semester.

I'm ever transient for now.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Sweet Innocence

I took a very special handsome friend to the Artwalk in nearby Gardiner on Friday night. We had a lovely time strolling the sidewalks and popping in to various shoppes for a look-see. At one location we struck up conversation with a photographer.

I had stepped away to look at something on the opposite side of the room and headed to the door where my special someone caught up to me and escorted me downstreet.

R to me: What kind of medium do you use?

Me to R: Many, I do mixed media things mostly! Why?

R to me: AAH, oh. (sounding kind of sheepish)

Me to R: What just happened?

R to me: Well I had to tell the photographer you were an artist and then she asked me what kind of medium you used.

Me to R: So what did you tell her?

R to me: I answered yes and walked out.

Well my friends, he tried! And I only snickered for ten minutes.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Holding My Own Hand

...the last time she was spotted she was seen walking down Lover's Lane holding her own hand.

Ain't loving yourself grand??? The above quote is altered just a tad. It was originally said with "HE" but I'm a "SHE" so I took artistic license. Anyway, a dear friend suggested that I respectfully command & demand what I needed to make myself more comfortable in my new job. Well with a lump in my throat and wobbly knees (because this takes practice) I did what she suggested. So things are getting better at work...and I loved myeself for doing what I needed.

**Art wise I was approached by a dealer to show her some of my things.

**I have been meeting some really intriguing people and in turn asking myself what these people have to do with my future

**Color and Design class is still all about values, tints, shades and neutrals. EE gads! I 'm ready for the more heady stuff but have been keenly interested in attending because of the interesting 19 year olds who create lively conversation with me and help me to learn more about my own two teens.

**Jewelry class is done for now. I made a ring, bracelet and two pendants but I didn't love the class so will move on to another medium.

**Bought a new Chevy Aveo. Tiny little box on wheels, it's bright yellow and gets 37 mpg which I need because my school is 100 miles one way.

Thinking of you my bloggy friends and am anxious to be on track again.

Monday, October 1, 2007

Gone for a bit...

Okay, it's like this... We have closed the cafe and put it on the market and now I am working like a dog at a bigger restaurant, still doing the art school thing, running the hotel and trying hard to maintain a relationship with two teens who are running about. That and the new classes I'm teaching are keeping me kind of busy. Oh, and I have to move in three weeks so I started packing yesterday.

My router broke so I have no e-mail and I swung into my Dad's place to borrow his computer so that I could at least post a quickie on my blog.

Sorry this isn't more positive but for now it's all I have. I am manifesting a better life and this little bump in the road can't keep this old dog down. Gotta run, you won't hear from me for a bit, but I'll be back eventually.

Friday, September 21, 2007

Boy, when I step away from the computer....

5 x 7 " on acrylic on canvas...USE AN ALTERNATE ROOT...a play on words, what are you growing with your thoughts? My tree offers: possibilities, suprising gentleness, sensational income, friends, riches, sweet relationship, affectionate dispotion, beautiful love.

I really do step away. I have been busy wrapping things up, going to class, being a Mom, and creating some really neat things.

Heartwood is great. Classes with eighteen year olds and classes with sixty year olds, classes taught by women artists of all ages...this is defintely a new life experience for me. I watched quietly as a young teen in my Color & Design class came down off a drug induced high. I was scared and sad. I pet Pencil the college mascot, a brindle colored greyhound. I eat in the community kitchen, powerwalk during my lunch break, get pizza and beer in the evening before my last class and arrive home to my bed at around 10:45.

  • Art History is suprisingly interesting. I expected boring and dry and much to my suprise I am excited and hungry for more.

  • Color & Design is filled with young chatter box kids who think it's gross to be naked if you are over sixty. They make me laugh and realize who silly I must hav been at that age, too. Beyond that we are doing the repititive black and white value stuff. Basic, basic. See pointalist drawing below (ugh).
  • Jewlery Design has too many students and not enough work stations so it is hurry up and wait time. My eyes burn because by this time it is 8:30 at night and I am working with tiny little things up close to my nose.

Did I mention yet the really good time I had with Jes, Mindy, Leah, Heidi and Susan? Wow!! I feel like I've known these ladies forever. I so enjoyed doing the collaborative pieces, the piece I own is called Oz and everyone here loves it!! I'm a little jealous about the flea marketing session that I couldn't attend. I looked at all the pix online and ooooooh, didn't we look like we were having fun!

Today I'm off to the Artisan's Barn, a sweet little post and beam building in a nearby town that displays and sells local artisan's work. I'm going to see if they'll take my things.

Look for more school art soon... In the meantime I need to catch up on blog reading. toodles!

Friday, September 7, 2007

Off to see the wizard...

It popped into my head so I entered it as a title. I'm off tomorrow to hang with Jes, Leah, Mindy, Heidi and maybe Susan. I think it will be so wonderful! In the meantime great gratitudes to the Beautiful Mystery for the following wonders in my life:
  • my 19 year old son and his new found wings, please join me in blessing his virgin flight into the real world... go danny go.
  • my sweet 17 year olds first month at a new school during her last year of public education...shake on, miss muffet.
  • a dear friend who has become my rock, how lucky for me, heavy for her that she is a counselor and is able to help me through some truly difficult times and still we find for laughing and learning...bless you, rhonda!!
  • R...delicious smelling, handsome, kind & gentle & understanding, and deep voice that makes my tummy flip when I hear it
  • Art...madness ensues and always there is the creative spark to soothe me, calm me, & help me lose myself in "the process", some great pieces have developed.
  • my bed...always i am amazed at the comfort i feel as i fall into the loft of my mattress. i am never too proud to shout "I LOVE BED!" The days are long and the nights are short, so in my house you'd hear this quite a lot.

All is well and all is well, and all in time will be well.


And oh, Heartwood College of Art begins history, color I and jewelry making.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Threadsketches and Sonny & Cher

Flower Pot Moon: mixed media on watercolor paper. The crescent moon has words from music sheets that serendipitously reads: fadeless flow'rs shed a fragrance rare, one by one down the stream of life.
Pansy & Rose: mixed media on watercolor paper. Some of the collage is from a French play that some student long ago was transcribing and in pencil wrote "bold-spirited". Thanks to my pal Jes who had passed along the effy.

Totally outside of my own self-impopsed box I took a flying leap yesterday and much to my own suprise landed strongly on the ground in an upright position. Crop, Paper, Scissors arrived in the mail on Monday, I gobbled it up on Tuesday and on Wednesday dove into a threadsketch. I am remiss in remembering the author/artists name who did the article, but I remember thinking "hmmmm, i can do that." And am I glad I did.

See, I'm a seamstress, too. I spent ten years operating a sewing & design business. I made wedding gowns, bridesmaids dresses, curtains, bathing suits, mittens, purses, tea cozies...whatever someone wanted no matter how hideous (or beautiful) it would be. I burned out. I put away my sewing machine. I kissed it goodbye. Then one day recently I heard it whisper: "Miss Tammy, I'm over here." Over six moves last year I always brought the dang thing with me. I stick it in a corner of a spare room and look at it sideways wondering why I've dragged it along. Now I know.

Ten days ago I stitched up a purse in about 2 hours. It went together like Sonny & Cher I tell you. I could feel my heart open as the time flew by and joy filled me. Sewing is a huge part of me. And yesterday as I put the machine to use on these two paintings I wanted to cry. The joy creeped in again and soon I was giddy. My dear friend Rhonda was so patient with my little screams of bliss.

I owe the author/artist of that article a whole world of gratitude as I begin exploring this concept of threadsketching. In the meantime a question to all of you experienced artist bloggers: How the heck to you get your pix so clear. I scan mine directly, edit just a bit and then drop them in but I never get a clear pix or a close up. What can I do to remedy this? Should I be taking pix directly?

Friday, August 24, 2007

And these are a few of my FAY-VOR -ITE things..

Don't you just love that old Christmas song...when the dog bites, when the bee stings, when I'm feelin' sad, I simply remember my fay-vor- ite things and then I don't feel sooooooo baaaaad. Ahem** I am a lousy singer but not such a lousy writer and in the mean time...a few of my favorite things.

Round bales of hay. What the heck is it about seeing these big straw marshmallows that takes my breath away, I swear I will never know. I like to see them when they are all greenish-brown, I don't like it so much when they are wrapped in white plastic and become the "catapillar" bales when they are placed end to end along the edge of a field.

WHOOOOO made this painting? I did. Bad photo with lots of personal meaning, not really meant for anything but me.

Some groovy Amy Butler lotus fabric and my handy-dandy sewing tools including Memere Sadie's thimble and 100% silk thread. I stitched up a lovely new handbag to keep my goodies in.
My good buddy Scott the King otherwise known as Scott King. He's a Spanish teacher by day and amazing musician by night. And yeah, that's a piece of my art that hangs on the cafe wall behind Scott.
This is Scott singing a Beatles song. Blackbird Fly and Norweigan Wood are two of my favorite tunes that he does nevermind his own writing that are totally amazing. Look to see him on the national circuit sometime because this man has goals!!
That's all for now. Just thought I'd share the love.

Thursday, August 16, 2007


This is me for now. a lovely new ring from the Sundance catalog, it was on clearance. It's a beautiful flat freshwater pearl in a hammered sterling setting with a hammered sterling band. So pretty and I have learned how much circles are my symbol.

...been drinking Dunkin Donut's iced coffee like it's going out of style. One a day whether I need it or not. Happen to need one right now! shopping with Miss Muffett went something like this: one for MM, one for me, two for MM, one for me, one lovely pair of danglies for MM, one pair of great fitting jeans for ...ME!!

...finished a great piece of art. Great Horned Owl has made his appearance and asked me to study him. He is the harbinger of change (eegads, do I really need more?) ...he recommends going with the change rather than working against it. Owl goes between our world and spirit world, he sees and hears the things that others can't (a special gift for me to recognize and honor). Any whooo....due to owl being so present I painted him with the very large full moon, acrylics and markers on masonite I am really proud of it but can't get you a pix, it's too big.

... busy successfully manifesting my dreams and am working on another project with a friend. It's a hands on class on releasing blocks and bettering your manifesting. It's great and important work for all of you gals who are tuned in , tapped in and turned on. My friend and I are working to bring power to the Divine Feminine in all of us and you can catch us at a town near you: . We'll be holding a class at Wish Studio in November 2007. Join us won't you?!

...summer madness is almost over. Soon the Maine tourists will be gone and I will have a normal life again

...And oh...I highly recommend FOOLSGOLD by Susan Wooldridge. I went like a madwoman through the book and now am doing all the exercises she suggested. I am learning so much about myself, it's amazing! It's good work to clean out your own soul's closet every now and again.

Monday, August 6, 2007

Summah in Maine

Summer beauty. Aahhhh!


Is that a word?

I've had little time for art, the cafe is hopping busy this summer, we've had no vacancy at the hotel and waitstaff are dropping like flies so I've been on the floor waitressing, too. Just for funsies go here and check the pix of the place. We had a boat parade on Friday, BUT, long story short Mother Nature sent thunder and lightning and we had to clear the lake.

But anyway...I spent Sunday traveling in Mid-Coast Maine with some special people. Popham Beach in Topsham was so packed that the parking area stretched out for one mile along the highway. Thanks, we'll pass.

Forward motion led us to Fort Popham where ALAS there was no parking and some guy driving a little sportscar kept driving in circles trying to find parking. I gave up long before he did and since we didn't want to walk yet another mile to see the beach we said Thanks, we'll pass.

So random sight-seeing it was. We drove past some neat little seaside communities, we smelled the salt air which was amazing and filled me with joy, we ate pathetic little wrap sandwhiches drenched in too much Italian dressing as we sat in an abandoned roadside campsite. We, okay not we, but one of us got stung by a horse fly and we had a damn good time. Damn good I say!

Now it's Monday and I have a lot to do and I wanted to post something so that you wouldn't all be bored. What the heck have you been up to?? Blogging. Swimming. Festivaling. Arting. Antiquing.

And oh, Dearest Susan Tuttle, I found Gloria's and now that I know where it is I am going to make a special trip over there. I'm soooo excited. If nothing else blogging has helped me locate some neat local antique and flea market shops.

Monday, July 30, 2007

Art Again at Last! The Cello

Here she is....The Cello. Not a great photo, sorry. The spot of light to the right of the image is not there on the real piece. In real life, she's a beauty, I'm proud of her. This is a 18 x 24 piece of masonite done in mixed media.

The background is acrylic paint mixed with Golden's fine sand additive. That was interesting to work with, for sure! The navy blue/gray ground is overlayed with metallic gold and red circles. Under her pale acrylic skin is a cello collaged with sheet music. The neck of the instrument goes all the way into her face while the body of the instrument melds with her own full hips and breasts. Inspiration for this art sat with me for many months. The motivation for was from a poem I read somewhere a year or so ago that opened with the line:

"The cello sounds low and deep from the room with no key,
your fingers pressing deep and I want you to play me"

I loved the poem and that line stuck in my head, nagging me. I will do my best to find the original poem for you my bloggy friends.

It is my intention to do a series of musical-she paintings. I love nudes. I revel at the sight of Renaissance period full-bodied nude portraiture. I hope to develop my skills in that area but finding willing models is not easy. I see a guitar, a saxophone, and more all entwined with SHE-SHE-SHE. Music moves me (and most of you, too) at all levels and I'm really not partial to any particular genre so this is good. I have a wide forum to work in and with. I am excited about it. Guitars really tickle my fancy and I want to work with them in depth. Anyone want to be a model?

And oh, I wrote a poem yesterday (highly unusual for me as I generally shy away from poetry), but I will present it for you later this week.

Monday, July 23, 2007

A Little Spark of Madness

We are given only a little spark of madness. We musn't lose it.
Robin Williams

Words to live by, don't you think? If only people understood me more. Does anyone else out there struggle with the fact that you stand in your own power? That your spark of madness, your ache to be who you know you are inside of yourself, is too much for the rest of the world to take...

I always thought that saying less was saying more. You probably don't think so after my last really long post, but for me, the excitement of last weekend overtook me and I wanted, nay, NEEDED to share the love. Today I learned that by not sharing personal information regarding a painful experience I had that people who were closest to me have made judgements against me. I thought by sparing people of the gory details, my side of the story, they would appreciate my desire to keep my personal business personal. Not so. It's disheartening but doesn't tear me apart.

I am loving people from a distance, in my heart, without speaking I am asking them for forgiveness. I am recognizing that anything I experience, no matter how ugly, is mine to own. Madness? Maybe. I believe in the goodness of humans. We falter. We all just do.

I am a renegade dreamer, full of power. Artist extrodinairre. Ex-wife. Mother. Friend. Teacher. Blogger.

**The picture is from my restaurant in the 1940's or 1950's. Feel free to print and use it in your art. I am fortunate to have many people drop off old pictures of this place. The three ladies photographed were some orginal waitstaff members.

Monday, July 16, 2007

Riding High with Jewelry, Belfast and Music

I have been riding high on life. So much good is going on that I may actually be glowing. I will recap the last few days so you can have a taste of the sweetness.
  • Thursday night, 7/12 good friend Scott King, an amazing musician, came to play a couple of sets at the cafe. He brought his folksy/bluesy music to a head playing some of my favorite tunes that he wrote himself. He stayed late as we laughed and shared beers. (Yes, beers, there can't be any shame in that.)
  • Friday the 13th...I ate a lovely breakfast at the restaurant, read some blogs and then hit the road for Whitefield, Maine's own Plenty to Do Farm aka Jes Berry's house. Jes had e-mailed directions re-routing me because of road construction. We were so amazed to discover we are a mere 50 minutes away from one another. WOOO HOOO.

I unloaded my pathetic supply of jewelery making thingy ma bobs, a couple of my own art pieces to share, my LifeWater (pomegrante and cherry, mmmmmm), and the cell unit. After a brief tour of her adorable 1800's farmhouse we sat in the newly added sunroom and got busy.

Let me say that Jes's home is lovely. Very comfy and welcoming. She has a lovely sense of style and a knack for hostessing. I felt very at home not only because of her personality but because her color schemes are exactly what I live(d) in. Mustard, sage, painted wood....ahhhhhhhh. And as I was perusing the place I spotted an original Kelly Rae piece. Art envy ensued. But I digress...

  • Jes generously and patiently showed me some of the ins and outs of Diamond Glaze, wire wrapping and jump ring making. I, in return, showered her living room with clippings of wire thrown by my cheesy wire cutters. It was hilarious and a tad dangerous.
  • Rudy her lovely aging dog, drooled and teased me all day with an empty water bottle. I think she felt my love of animals. Dakota, Rudy's buddy lay quietly in the corner whilst the kitty, I forget her name rolled around the living space.
  • I managed to make this necklace called Laugh. It's heavy and a bit itchy but it was my first and I am proud of it. Thank you so much, Jes!! I headed home at 3:30.

Saturday morning was a beauty so a special friend who I'll call R thought we ought to hit the coast. So off we went to Belfast a beautiful diverse town rated one of the top ten in the country for its culteral options. We first crossed the big bridge into Searsport where we went to Moose Point State Park to walk the trails and beach, then attended a small used book store where I picked up a French and Danish encyclopedia for a friend who is having surgery this week. Odd gift, I know, don't ask (he loved it). Because we didn't have the kids with us we bypassed the famous Perry's Nut House knowing we'd be back another time with them in tow. When we got hungry we pulled into Main Street, Belfast and chose to eat al fresco at Dockside's Restaurant. A nice, family oriented, award winning restaurant with great views of town and the ocean. It was getting late so we headed home so I could help with the dinner rush and close the cafe.

Sunday the 15th...The morning was a little dull. I had a mongo thick feeling in my head from lack of sleep (new moon problem for me) so I took a nap from 1:-3:30. It was deliciously naughty and a total treat to sleep in the midafternoon. Anyway. When I arose I made a yummy potato & asparagus salad with honey-mustard dressing for the evenings festivities.

My chariot arrived at 5:30 with R at the reigns. We were invited to a private house concert. The headliner? Pierce Pettis. Neither of us brought directions. Since R has a way of losing information I carefully removed the written directions from his care two weeks ago. Lo and behold I lost the directions...he he he OOPS. Anyway, Spirit was watching because as we were looking rather foolish on the side of the road wondering which way to go R suggested we just start taking each of the side roads until we found the right house. First road on the left and *BLING* (is that the sound of that magic makes?) there we are, front and center, at the address we needed. JOY!!

The home of the couple sponsoring the concert was so stunning. 100' from the most beautiful lake water stood a massive yet tasteful home. What a blessing. The sausages were grilling, I donated my potato and asparagus salad and cracked open a beer. R and I sunk into being ourselves, no masks, just us at our best.

We took second row seats set for a group of 40 people. Scott King opened with a four song set. As you know, I hear Scott sing alot, but this day he was at the top of his game. I was so happy and proud of him. His wife Shauna was there to share in his glory, too. Scott, who had helped arrange the Pierce Pettis concert then introduced Pierce and the party began.

Picture this: a skinny, nerdy looking guy with glasses and curly salt and pepper hair wearing a Guiness Beer t-shirt under a plaid short sleeved button up with jeans and sneaks. EEEE GADS...can this man reallyl be the magical musical genious I've been told of???? Holy Hannah~when this man started playing his guitar and using his vocalsI could have burst into tears. His story-telling folksy/bluesy style completely knocked my socks off. I found myself swaying to the music, tapping my feet and knocking my fingers around. I couldn't sit still. The beautiful part was the spirituality that seeps into his lyrics. After his first set I looked at R and asked for the money to buy a CD, but he already had his wallet out and was headed to the table.

In between drinking tons of water Pierce enthralled the audience with stories about the songs and their history. He spoke of his Alabama childhood and his current life on the road. He sand a song he wrote for Garth Brooks titled "You Move Me" and there are several other big names that have sung his lyrics that I can't even remember.

The second set of tunes was melancholy. I found myself wanting to sob. He sand "Black Sheep Boy" and images of my 19 year old son went through my head as he warbled "i pray each night for your protection, my black sheep boy." Had Pierce Pettis met my son? And damn him if he didn't go on to sing "My Little Girl" singing how"You dance and twirl and twirl, always remember you are my little girl". I was choking back the tears, today as I remember the words to the songs I can cry, there is no R to watch and wonder.

I said to myself AMEN as Pierce finished the set with an old fast paced blues number that was once done on Bob Dylan's World Gone Wrong album. Pierce was completely taken over by the music. His body shook, his guitar was laughing and bouncing with giddiness and I was nearly taken over with the excitement of the song.

When it was all said and done and Pierce had done two standing ovations I was honored to share my thanks and praise of his music. I aquired an autograph and left the party grinning. During the music I saw a whole collaged piece go through my head, the setting, the music, the scent of the place all done on one big canvas. I hope it comes out as I sketched it in my journal. I will call it Pierce.

So there it is. Life is good. Music. R. Belfast. Jewelry making. There is so much I left out of this post that I can't even put to words about the past weekend I will leave the rest to your own imaginations. I hope I haven't over-shared and at the same time I hope I have inspired you enough to look into the music of Piece Pettis and Scott King, the jewelery making and teaching talents of Jes Berry and the cultural action of Belfast, Maine.

I sit here knowing I've been blessed.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Danger Dog Will Bite Your Bottom

I told you I have been busy. This is Willie, my half golden-half Irish dog who crossed over in 2005 . He was a beauty to behold all golden and auburn with long curly hair.

This was done on a 6 x 8 canvas. There are seven layers of acrylic paint on the background. I used my tiniest scissors to do scherrenschnitte for the silouette and there is some gorgous black and white designs from sheet music that my boy Willie is standing on. His collar is red cardstock and the ring is gold wire. Of course the scan doesn't do the color justice. There's lots of mustard and rose. There are rings of black and gold along with a thin layer of white.

I so enjoyed this "Ode to Wilie" that I made two of these so they could face one another on the wall. I feel confident is poking his nose at my knee as he did, wanting my attention and saying to me "Hey, did you get rid of the pig yet?" He didn't much like Abby Rose.

More info on my current pot-bellied pet Abby Rose, to come in future posts.

Now this thing is just a simple doodle I did over coffee and contemplation this morning. I ADORE my markers and luckily enough they sit mightily close to my kitchen table in a drawer that is almost full to capacity of these lovely colorful sticks. I doodle constantly and often wonder if people who pass by my desk question whether or not I do any work. I rely heavily on Zig scrapbooking markers because I delight in the choice of one thick end and one fine point end.

Tomorrow I am off to hang with Jes at the Plenty To Do Farm. She'll be in her jammies probably and I'll be in my comfies, too. We have our work cut out for us. Stay tuned.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

I'm reading and writing and working and doing the art thing. Life is good and full right now. I'm blessed beyond words to feel so inspired. Hmmm, inspired...good word...inspiration is Divine's way of speaking to us. When we are inspired things fall into place, everything is right where it should be and all the right things happen, you just know it is 'meant to be'.

For me right now this means the right book that makes perfect sense, the conversation that happened at exactly the right time, the piece of mail with the right message. On and on I see the beauty of what the Universe is offering me, if only I accept and say Yes.

This past week I said yes to a book. Zero Limits by Joe Vitale and Dr. Hew Len speaks to me at all levels. Accepting total responsibility for EVERYTHING that appears in my life and then working to heal it makes my heart feel better. I want to heal. I want to be a leader and a teacher of healing. In order to do this I must set the example. Ho'oponopono is a Hawaiin method of healing that brings our souls back to a clean slate. It is a simple method and is deeply profound. I remain moved to tears at the depth of this learning.

This past week I said yes to healing. Divorce has left me weary. Myself, (ex)husband and children are hurting, but finally I see a light at the end of the tunnel. A shift has occurred in all of us and I can see that better days are ahead.

This past week I said yes to my future. I registered for my first three classes at college. I signed up for an all day conference on a subject that interests me. I have begun to look at moving to a new area of Maine.

The past week I said yes to me because if I don't love me then how can I expect you to love me?

ARTSY NOTE: I'm working on some fun stuff...two great little mixed media canvases and the darn necklaces are just about done.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

And they laughed...

Okay, so I am not into Flickr yet. I don't own a decent camera. There I to the Wish Studio event with a pathetic disposable thingy. Jes laughed shamelessly and told me to put it away, but not before I managed to get in a few shots...
I offer the following:

This is Leah, Melanie, Me and Jes outside the Red Brick building that Mindy has the Wish Studio space in. I think the brick arch is great! Thank you to the young gentleman wearing black who took our photo using my disposable camera!

Would you really let these two be alone in TJ Maxx?

BELOW: the one and only Miss Muffett goes to Prom...HEY, doesn't that sound like a Muppet movie title? And by the way that is the view I get at work every day from the cafe.

She's SOOOOOO purty! A Grecian Goddess.

Since I don't know how to move these pictures around you will have to bear with this. The photo below is of the mantel at my rental house. It holds three pieces of art I did recently. I posted it to prove to you that I really actually do work in my makeshift studio.

The picture below this one is of Miss Muffet and her Blue Weimeraner, Otto. Isn't he gorgeous. I meant SHE, isn't she gorgeous. NO, WAIT! I mean THEM. "THEM" ARE BEAUTIFUL!

Oh, that was fun...sharing. *sigh* I will be out for a bit and won't be posting till next week sometime unless I turn agressive and do the meme I was tagged for by Leah. I may do that on Friday, we'll see. Till then my friends, stay tuned in , tapped in, turned on. And...

... listen to the breeze at dawn, it has secrets to tell, do NOT go back to sleep.