Saturday, February 28, 2009

final strokes

solo post - L

Ok today, after I finish breakfast, I'll make the final strokes on my painting. But then I'll just have to turn away and stop critiquing it so harshly. I look at other peoples artwork and I like so many styles - sometimes it makes me wish I had a different style of my own. I've always been told that I have a unique style and really that's a good thing I suppose. I think it's important that an artist establishes their own personal technique and approach - that a piece by them is recognizable as theirs at first glance. I talk about all this art stuff more on my other blog site.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

once was

solo post - T

not satisfied with our exploration of the abandoned house, my friend Zach and I went back. the man across the street warned us that the house was haunted. we were ridiculously creeped out by that news, but still determined, so we entered the house. what once was someones room for entertainment or family dining now was a space void of anything except a single light bulb hanging from a cord, the light had been shut out by the curtains that were safety pinned closed in the middle. the house was completely empty - it was truly desolate. as we went around the house, we kept taking note of how creepy the lack of light was. the only room with any day light in it had literally six different types of wallpaper patchworking the walls and contained the door that we had tried to get in from the back - it was locked in three places. in the kitchen there was a calendar from february (same month we entered - creepy) of 1985, indicating that it had been abandoned for twenty-four years. after we had finished looking around, we closed the door and left the house - hopefully we didn't disturb the ghosts.

to me there's something fascinating about abandoned homes - there's mystery and intrigue about the people who lived there. when I look through these houses to find a great shot, i find myself thinking what kind of people lived in this house, what were their lives like? did children live here? at one time, this was someone’s home, and now it just sits, being neglected and exposed to the elements of nature - it's sad.

i had to borrow a camera - mom has had mine since Nov. : (

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

colors / plaid

In the past I would have never, ever, bought anything so loud - still not sure what came over me - this and the green jacket?? - I guess I was feeling a need for color. / i like boys in plaid shirts. this is one of my best friends from atlanta.

Monday, February 23, 2009

green / grin

L - iphone pic at work / T - phone pic at dorm
A lot of women have a weakness for shoes - I have to admit I have a weakness for coats. Spring is almost here, yet I bought a new coat last weekend. Well it's still cold outside and isn't this a great spring color? / yeah for packages in the mail! i got a belated birthday gift today from my friend who is at the college of charleston. we have always created playlist cds for each others birthday - i'm glad she didn't break the tradition, and she sent this cool alice in wonderland plate? (when i did my alice in wonderland series photos she posed as the cheshire cat for me.)

`But I don't want to go among mad people,' Alice remarked.
`Oh, you can't help that,' said the Cat: `we're all mad here. I'm mad. You're mad.'
`How do you know I'm mad?' said Alice.
`You must be,' said the Cat, `or you wouldn't have come here.'

Sunday, February 22, 2009


solo post by L - NikonD40x 200mm SOC

“We can always choose to perceive things differently. You can focus on what's wrong in your life, or you can focus on what's right.” - Marianne Williamson

That quote is great and so true, but this weekend, for me, the issue of focus was less philosophical and more about keeping my attention in one place - focusing on the task at hand - in the present. I keep getting distracted by little things.
I'm working on a painting that I want to submit to Paws for Charity and it's due next weekend, so I really needed to be painting but I got distracted by this, and while posting, of course I got distracted by other peoples blogs. I finally did get around to painting and I'm so close to finishing - all I really lack is getting Evee painted in the background - but instead of focusing on painting Evee, I kept seeing things that I wanted to change about Kodi (by the way the painting is of Kodi sitting on a chair inside and Evee is just outside the window looking in - maybe I'll show it to you when I'm pleased with it). So I focused on Kodi, which in turn may have resulted in overworking her, instead of focusing on Evee. For some reason I hesitate, afraid I'll mess up the entire painting when I paint Evee. But like my mom always told me, "you can't make a mistake in painting, just do it, you can always paint over it if you mess up". I've got to stay focused in order to complete this painting in time.
Another issue of focus for me this weekend was physical - the way my eyes work these days. I have always had good vision - never wore glasses. But as I have aged things are less in focus than they used to be. Tonight in my metalsmithing class I thought I had forgotten my glasses. As I looked at the tiny 2mm bit of solder on my metal I found it difficult, no impossible, to see. I thought I would had to run to CVS to get a pair of glasses in order to do much of anything in class - how sad is that? But luckily I found a pair in my car. This fuzzy vision of old age really bothers me.
Did you have a focus issue this weekend?

Friday, February 20, 2009

blinds / eyes

L - iphone pic / T- phone pic

Graphic art today at work - I love the late afternoon sunlight in my office. / "the eyes are the window to the soul." i have to do 5 contour drawings for class. i'm enjoying how this is looking so i think i'll do portraits of my friends and give them to them. (this is just a portion of the drawing)

Wednesday, February 18, 2009


solo post by L (photography without a camera)

"It is very easy to tell the difference between man-made and God-made objects. The more you magnify man-made objects, the cruder they look, but the more you magnify God-made objects, the more precise and intricate they appear." -Luther Sutherland

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

blossomed / evolved

Just last weekend the sun was shining and the temperatures where warm - the trees and plants felt it was time to spring forth and blossom. This weekend the temperatures are going to dip into the low 20s. I sure hope it doesn't kill all the tender developing buds and what has already blossomed. (weird, I didn't realize until after I posted this that the corresponding post is so similar and I didn't plan it that way) / i'm really happy with the way this project has turned out! i determined that my faucet looked like a reindeer, or more specifically the dog from the grinch, so i decided i would mount it like a trophy. i found some twine lying around the art school and used that to give the metal some texture, found some forks to make parts of the antlers and the hooves at the bottom, and mounted it to a piece of wood. i like the graphic look of it and the way the paint on the twine looks. we have critique tomorrow, so wish me luck!

Sunday, February 15, 2009

adore / adornment

In a previous post I said that I wasn't the mushy type and I don't think I am - at least not in person. However I can be sentimental when it comes to my childhood and anything having to do with my own child. And you might say I must be a romantic of sorts because I am drawn to books of this type - books about love and especially books that have beautiful illustrations and fanciful words and poems. Why do I buy these books? This particular book has little envelopes on the pages with "real" letters you can pull out and read - like you've discovered someone's private treasure box. Letters like this: " I cannot get that beautiful afternoon out of my head, above me where I lay the grass was silhouetted against the blue of the heavens, small clouds were rushing past as the wind drove them on an endless journey. Then close to me was the most lovely of all, your soft hair against my cheek, your kisses so cool and unearthly and my happiness was so great." - Julia Lee-Booker to Lieut. Pat McSwiney, a British soldier 1940 I buy them because I think you would call me is a hopeless romantic. / today my roommate and i went to michael's to take advantage of a coupon we found. i had forgotten how much i love that store! every time i go in i regret the fact that i never took up scrapbooking. there are so many cute little stickers and stencils that i would love to utilize somehow, but every time i do decide to buy them they end up stuck in the back of a drawer somehow. i remember the scrapbook i made after my 8th grade trip to washington dc and how good it turned out, my whole class thought i was just "so artsy." anyway, every time i go in, the decorations seem to get cuter and cuter. maybe i'll find a way to incorporate them into an art piece somehow [:
(p.s. the price differences between michael's and the athens art stores are ridiculous! i want to support the locals, but from now on i think we're going to hit michael's up...)

Saturday, February 14, 2009

open up / express yourself

Happy Valentine's Day my friends!
I hope that all of you are treated as wonderfully as you deserve this day - and every day - and if you don't have someone to treat you - well then treat yourself. That's what I did. Also don't forget to open up and express your love to the ones that matter most - this day and every day / love you mom.

Friday, February 13, 2009

beauty remains / remaining beauty

L - Nikon D40x 200mm / T- phone pic

I just love the delicate petals left behind on the hydrangea bushes - there's beauty that remains in this plant all year long, but I can't wait to see the color of the summer blossoms - color so soft - a plant reminiscent of grandmothers house. There's unexpected synchronicity tonight. I don't usually see the relations until I start to write my part. T's image also shows some beauty left behind in a decaying old house , perhaps someone's grandmother's home? / across from our new house is an abandoned paradise. it's the kind that i love- white with a front porch and adornments around the door. i went with my friend zach to investigate. the front door was barred and locked, so we went around to the back to check it out. there was a pile of stuff in the back - we were amazed at what the people had thrown out- cds, teapots, movies and books. the books were waterlogged, but the places that had disintegrated inside them created interesting sentences. wished i'd had a real camera with me.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

The joy of my life

solo post by L - T at age 2 / age 18

Happy Birthday Taylor!
“Today you are You, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is Youer than You.”
- Dr. Seuss
Tomorrow is T's birthday - she'll be 19.
I'm not the mushy type and unfortunately I'm not eloquent either, so writing a birthday wish is hard for me. This will be the first year we haven't been together on her birthday. I don't know if that will bother her as much as it does me, but it's made me a little sentimental so I got out old photos. Remembering...... the Old MacDonald birthday party I had for her when she was 2, and the Nursery Rhyme party when she was 3 and we played "pin the mitten on the kitten" (my mom made her the 3 little kittens, stuffed dolls). When she was 7 I took her 6 friends to the circus. When she was 10 we had an old-fashioned bowling party - I made her a cute red felt skirt with a black pom-pom poodle and a black satin bowling jacket with her initials on the back - she wore her hair in a high pony tail. The other girls wore 50's attire and they had a blast - lots of giggles that night. When she was 11 she asked for money, in lieu of gifts, and donated $200 to help animals at Noah's Art, an animal rehabilitation center. When she turned 16 it was a big deal of course. I rented a limo to take the girls to the Hyatt Reqency downtown. The girls, in their fancy dresses, rode to the top of the town and had dinner up on the spinning blue dome, it began snowing as they had their photo taken with the limo driver once they arrived home. Inside I had a chocolate fountain with strawberries and angel food cake for dipping (they devoured it in less than 10 minutes I think.) Lots of chatter that night. Now she's an adult for the most part and parties don't include the parents. But as parents, their day is always special to us. In fact, I think as parents, our children's birthday is certainly more special than our own. For me, I know, the day she was born, was the day pure joy was brought into my life. She has been a continuous source of pride and delight for me and I grow more proud of her every day.
Sorry, Taylor, to have embarrassed you. Happy Birthday!!

Monday, February 9, 2009

shaggy / sleek

solo post by L

Because I have nothing else to post tonight and I mentioned that I would share a photo of Evee's haircut - here is Evee all shaggy and sort of chunky looking and then with a non-professional haircut by me looking much sleeker.
We used to pay a lot of money to have her professional trimmed, but one day I got the idea that I would like to try it myself. I actually enjoy doing it but I have a hard time with her legs. Yesterday the blade dulled before I finished and I didn't get her ears trimmed all velvety short like I prefer. When she was young she had the most beautiful Springer cut - long, gorgeous rich brown, curly hair on her ears and long, silky white hair on her underside. She looked like a show dog. But that was a lot of upkeep, so one summer I decided to give her a full shave. I guess it will never be as pretty but I think she has to be more comfortable with it short and it keeps her looking young.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

nightfall / afternoon

It was so nice outside I finally had the perfect day to give Evee a haircut. Her hair had gotten so long it took me 2 hours to cut her. She's pretty good about letting me cut it but she gets tired and so do I - so we take short little breaks. She looks pretty cute now and so much thinner. I had planned to post a photo of her but when I saw the photo T sent, I decided to post this one I took yesterday on the way home from Athens. I had to stop to get gas and I snapped this photo then. Don't you agree it's much better with T's photo than a silly picture of my dog? / no it's not the house we're looking to rent. although the boys that live in the place we want are just about as bad. (you have to look hard past their clutter to envision the great potential of the house we're looking at - it's there). this place is actually the back door at Cali n Tito's latin american restaurant where mom and i ate on saturday afternoon. the patio of the restaurant is littered with a bunch of old tvs, sewing machines, and other nostalgia - picnic tables are placed on pea gravel, authentic music plays in the background, and bright flags adorn the walls - brings you to somewhere south of the border. i pass it all the time and have always wanted to eat there - seems that i've been missing out because it was very crowded with the weather being as nice as it was. i'm sure i'll be going back. it really was a coincidence that later on that evening my roommate and i watched dirty dancing: havana nights.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

emerge / morph

L - Nikon D40x 200mm / T - phone pic
Today was an absolutely gorgeous day. I drove up to Athens to look at another house with my daughter. It was so warm I opened the sunroof! Before I left Atlanta I was outside with my dog and noticed the sproutings of spring. With temperatures like this for a few days I bet we will see more little surprises emerge. I remember one year in particular, on Feb 12th, (1990, the year my daughter was born) that the Bradford pear trees were in full bloom and the jonquils too. unusual. / our newest assignment in my 3D class is to create a "found object" sculpture piece with anthropomorphic or zoomorphic features. my teacher suggested a good dumpster to go to behind the foundry where there would be a lot of metal and wood scraps (without having o deal with food items). my roommate and i went over after breakfast and got to work dumpster- diving. the students doing metal work probably knew we were freshman assigned some crazy foundations class project and were laughing at us, but it was still fun. my finest find was this faucet. my roommate and i decided it kind of looked like a dog or a reindeer. what do you think it looks like - what can this faucet possibly morph into? i need to add more objects to make a full creature. help, i'm having trouble getting inspiration.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

patterns / moire

L - iphone / T- phone pic
I'm a day late posting this and now it looks sort of out of place, but yesterday it was actually cold. Today, however, was warm and sunny and I'm so excited for the predictions for the weekend - highs near 70. Maybe soon I will be putting away these cold weather items. I know we're all excited for that. / "so cold I could see my breath" - that's what I named this piece. this is a study in morie effect done in colored pencil on black paper. i'm still working on it.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009


Feb 3, 2008

One year ago, this week, we brought home a little kitty and named her Kodi (short for Kodachrome). I had wanted to give Taylor a kitten for her 18th birthday before the 3 boys fighting for her attention each gave her one and we ended up with 3 kittens on our doorstep Feb 12th. She had been saying for months that she wanted a solid gray cat just like the one she fell in love with over the summer. But then she found a cute little calico that she just had to have. We drove all the way to Macon to see this kitten. The lady had a lot of kittens but the one Taylor wanted to see was being shown at some show that you had to pay to get in. I didn't want to pay the price for both of us just to see that cat. So we decided we would check back with the owner at a later date. On the way home, just for fun, we stopped at our local Atlanta Humane Society. They only had 3 kittens, but there in the play room was a sweet little gray kitten getting all the attention from a little 4 yr old girl. Taylor was in love but just knew that little girl would talk her mom in to getting the kitten. But she didn't - instead Taylor talked me in to getting it for her. She was a sweet tempered little Russian Blue (it's what the papers said anyway) and I knew we would be taking her home - after all that little kitten made the cutest little baby sound you ever heard, how could I resist?
Kodi was the perfect birthday present for Taylor's 18th but what do I get a 19 year old? I have about a week to decide.

And now Kodi is my company. She is a very talkative, playful, sometimes too frisky, little kitty.

Monday, February 2, 2009

ripples / ruffles

solo post - L NikonD40x

I went outside yesterday morning with my 200mm, just paying attention to little details in the trees and looking for spring buds - I got some cool photos that I might share later. But the similarities in these images that I took yesterday was a happy surprised to me - the warm golden and greens; the wave pattern of my bracelet (first thing I made in metalsmithing class) matching the ruffled edge of the leaves; and the fine lines of the tree bark and the ones aging my hand match (click for larger view and you'll see what I mean). I hate to point out the age of my hands, but it's uncanny how similar the striations in my hand are to that in this beech tree trunk. / sorry i don't have a photo for you tonight mom - i've been sort of stressed about the housing situation

Sunday, February 1, 2009

a day of painting

solo post - L Nikon D40x 50mm / 200mm
I started painting first thing this morning. I looked out the window and noticed 2 robins all puffed up like it was freezing cold outside but it wasn't so cold. They sort of looked like babies but they couldn't possibly be could they? The photo is taken through the window with my 200m so the quality isn't so great but isn't that color wonderful? It was just the color I had on my palette. I didn't make any adjustments to these - when I saw them side by side in iphoto i knew they had to go together for my post today.
I painted all day long until I had to quit and go to my metalsmithing class. Class was great tonight. I learned how to solder and continued working on my little metal cylinder box. Plus I finally got to polish my copper bracelets in the tumbler and they so shiny and nice.


The photos on the left are taken by me, Leslye, the mother. The photos on the right are taken by my daughter, Taylor – unless otherwise noted. Comments are always welcome. thanks
If you care to visit, I, Leslye, have another blog - AutumnSun where I ramble around different paths and pleasures of my own.