Friday, September 13, 2013

Excitment in the air

Yes everyone is excited with the beginning of another school year, new cloths, new friends and seeing old friends and teachers. As well swim goggles have been put away for the winter and art brushes and smocks ready for fresh paint. Here are a couple photos of two of my girls who have been learning how to rug hook, in my previous blog writing you can see these two creative young ladies while working on their projects and here they are with their finished table mats and a wonderful job they did. They were very patient considering something like this does not happen over night. I have plans to teach all my students rug hooking but we will all be working on the same project thanks to one of my Moms giving me an unfinished project of hers which is big enough for everyone to have a hand in and the plan is when finished to hopefully sell this piece and to donate the money made to our local SPCA animal shelter /rescue, this way they learn the craft and sharing at the same time. Last Christmas we did a craft show at our local fire dept. and we will be there again this November, date and time will be announced closer to the show. The kids will be working on special projects just for the show, they are excited about selling their art and making some money for themselves or if in the case that they don't sell all of their work they then will have special pieces of art to give as gifts to their friends and families. Last year they painted mussel shells like Santa's and sold them to raise money for the SPCA with over $90.00 donated. great job guys, very kind of you to think of animals in need. Below is a picture of "The Boys" who were back from a summer of fun. They finished their paintings and asked if they could take a moment and visit the "Bird House" which is a small guest cottage we have here, the kids love this magical little building with maps from all over the world plastered all over the walls , fun books to read and even a ukulele to play as you can see in in the picture. Then here below is a picture of a few of the girls showing off their wonderful art and smiles! There is no stopping these young minds, they have no fear when it comes to creating ,there is no right, there is no wrong in art. Art is created from the heart of the artist and enjoyed by those who see and feel the love of what lies before them.  

Friday, August 2, 2013

A picture pretty well says it all, "Fun in Art"

As the title says "Fun in Art" Let me first explain the mask on this fine young man, we were doing copper repose and when finishing the piece we wear a mask because we work with steel wool and Kiefer wanted to keep his on. That too can be fun. As you look through these pictures you will see a lot of smiles. As well take note of the concentration
and dedication these fine young people have with all they create . I believe we all have these abilities and as we grow into adulthood we forget and are way too quick to say"I can't do that" for, yes you can, your work may not look like everyone else's because it is yours , so take a moment and find your young at heart and say"yes I can do that". This Summer has flown by so quickly and I have been tardy at writing here in my blog. So this morning I thought I would sit and share these wonderful photos of some great kids with you all and I again have a busy day ahead so let me leave you with one thought"Yes you can!"
And How I could have forgotten to upload this wonderful picture taken just yesterday. I know ,I was so rushed this morning I skipped over this great shot. Then it seems that I had one of those ,well, you know "senior moments"I thought I had a private lesson today but discovered that indeed that I had mis-scheduled and written down the wrong date, so am taking a moment to update today's posting and then ready for dinner with our old friend who is home for a visit ,we shall break bread together. Until next time.

Friday, July 12, 2013

Meet " Buddy"

Meet "Buddy" he is my latest commission for one of my art students. Buddy was her pet who no longer is with her but at least she can remember him with this little guy.
Things have been so busy, hot and sad since Privateer days. We had a dear friend pass and with this news ,life has been hard to pick up pieces ,trying to appreciate our good times and remember the fun and laughter we had with such a wonderful person. To always give thanks for having them in our lives. Life goes on and we will make the best of it ,in her memory. So I was a bit slow getting this project started but as I worked and got to that point where it all comes together and I could see the Raccoon coming out from the wool I can say I am happy with Buddy and am thankful for the reason to take my mind elsewhere. I took what needle felted characters i had left after Privateer days down to Fort Point Lighthouse and even though I love to meet the people who buy them , they are better there then here, I sometimes think of them as my babies, I do know that some of you out there get what I am saying.
I remember many years ago now when we were making our Sea People figurines on a regular basis there was a news paper article written about us and the Sea people. That Christmas with every purchase of a Sea People which were usually being bought for gifts we gave a copy of the article to go with it. I remember actually feeling the energy on Christmas morning thinking and imagining all those who were reading that article and how special it was. It's always a great feeling to receive a phone call note or email and sometimes in some cases a photo of the person who received something that I made as a gift from someone they love. And when it's a commission of something that means so much to that person, well I am thankful for what I do and thank others for feeling the love.
I have been collecting some interesting props for future needle felting ,such as rocking chairs, bicycles and even a spinning wheel and by this Christmas God willing I will have some fun characters to share with you. Remember I do commissions of people and pets , all i need is a photo to work from .
Well that's about it for now, I have been trying to write for days and was having a hard time to be positive ,but I now have broken the ice and my next writing will be more up beat, I will share some pictures of young people and their art with you here.
Blesses to all,keep strong, be happy and be nice, for life is way too short!

Monday, July 8, 2013

Friday, May 24, 2013

Worthwhile volunteering?

Yes it is!
We all can't do everything and there is much we can't do ,but there is also much we can do. One needs to look and weigh out what works for you. Some people enjoy being on boards and doing meetings and solving many issues which need solved. Others offer their time at hospitals, nursing homes and other like places. Fire Departments,Auxiliaries the list is endless and so are these important jobs. While we lived in the country we worked for our local fire dept. and local elementary school for 27 years. When we moved to town instead of jumping into any particular organization we decided to look into what our aging bodies would allow us to do. Not being the vibrant young people we were in the past we knew that our time and energy  had to fit our today life style. After being approached by two friends who knew our passions and talents we  began volunteering at what has become more then rewarding but healing  and satisfying as well with doing what we can for our local Theatre company "The Winds of Change" and working with the Elderly in local nursing homes and the very young at The Dr. John C. Wickwire school where we are reading mentors as well help with their breakfast program and drum and craft workshops in the past. Don't ever think that whatever task so small that one does isn't noticed or appreciated for it is, ten fold! Last week we were honored by having a young volunteer himself take pictures of us at the school and then to arrive  today to find pictures ,writeup and great thanks given for what we do in one of the foray showcase windows. What a wonderful feeling to be thanked for doing something that makes you feel so good. We need to thank all of you for giving us this opportunity. 
Hopefully with the joining of the Milton School into the Wickwire next Fall that more people won't step up and help to relieve some of the burden on the teachers in the so many different  programs that need help. All you need is a simple back ground check of course and other then that get ready to smile.
So again thank you Dr. John C. Wickwire School for recognizing us for doing something we truly enjoy. Lets all try and step up to whatever plate fits . simple back ground check of course ,other then that ,     hospitals

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Young enthusiasm!

 Well there is so much I could and can say about these enthusiastic young artists and then again their satisfied smiles are worth a million words.They have been working for weeks on these paintings in the style of Claude Monet. The paint was flying week after week as they developed their own style of impressionism while learning about "Claude Monet" his life and work. To the point that a couple of them are doing school projects on him.

 I  find working with these children so rewarding and looking at these photos again says it all. You did a wonderful job guys.
I had to laugh ,last week a couple of my students were out sick with the flu and one Mom told me that one young man said, "I can go to art class if I take a gravol." Needless to say he didn't come to art that day and just as well , I have been fighting something off myself. But this week the boys will be back and again paint will fly, to again produce some wonderful works of art! That I will share here when they are done. Sadly last week I had a couple of paintings that left before I had  a chance to take pictures. But they were wonderful as well! I can only hope to inspire and fuel the spark that already exists within them.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Happy Easter!

I was going to wait and add these pictures on Easter Sunday but decided why not do it now. These may put an Easter smile on some faces which need just that. I have been doing this for years and have roped Chuck into joining me. I use to work for the Bridgewater Mall back a few years ago as you can see in some of the pictures for the Shriner's and Kinsmen and between Bunny sessions I would visit the Bridgewater hospital and nursing homes instead of driving back to Mill Village. Or would go shopping and stay in costume, rather then be half dressed as a Rabbit . If I had a penny for all the looks and smiles I got. The most heart felt moment was one day when I was visiting the hospital and a gentleman came from one of the rooms and took my paw and said "You are just what my Mom needs right now" God Bless her she was near the end and she smiled and laughed with me that day. I thank God for those moments I shared with her while in costume. So today after after doing this since at least 1990 I still find great rewards in trying to hop down the Bunny trail with the help of Chuck who had no choice but to hop on board. Sometimes it just makes sense to join in then try to ignore the fact your wife grows ears and tail once a year. Happy Easter everyone, Life is way too short not to have a good laugh every once in a while.I have outgrown many of my bunny outfits but the ears ,tail and feet always seem to fit. Don't forget this weekend March 30 ,Easter Egg hunt at Pine Grove Park for the kids 11 AM.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

"White Rabbit"

Well sometimes one gets on a roll, or I should say I get on a roll. This is my latest roll"White Rabbit" 100% needle felted wool sculpture. He has been on my mind of late and while I was busy making Easter Bunnies I thought why not? So meet the Man or Rabbit. Just in time for Easter!
And speaking of Easter I will be writing and adding pictures in the near future here on my blog of my many Bunny gigs and Bunny outfits from over the years. We are doing another Bunny Gig this Easter on March 30th in Pine Grove park at 11 AM . An Easter Egg hunt for the Kids. This will be the 2nd year for this event ,organized by some great community active ,busy Mom's.We have out grown many Bunny outfits and Easter bonnets over these years but our ears and feet have kept on ticking and as long as we do we will again next year adorn our furry outfits to bring a smile to faces young and old. Yes I am sure some of those smiles are darn right laughs, people wondering why in the name of all that is Rabbit  would we do this , well because we Love the Kids and having fun!! Why not ! Our way of keeping young.
So yesterday we had a late change in plans so I worked until late in the evening for me finishing up "White Rabbit" and I am so happy with the result.
There is talk of snow in the next few days, I do hope this is just that (talk) and doesn't come to be. My bike has been calling me, even though I will need to add a lot more air to my tires this Spring ,just to hold me up. Unlike the past couple years I didn't ride all winter . And It shows if you get my drift and I don't mean "snow drift".
Not sure but maybe today I will start another needle felting, I am thinking fisherman, standing beside a barrel and net. I love it when I can just take the thought ,find something mindless on TV and sit and needle felt which for anyone who doesn't know this medium is poke ,poke and poke a lot more with a bard needle and a large sponge and raw wool. I will share here when finished.
Oh and by the way"Happy St. Paddy's Day " to all out there who celebrate the green!

doing wha tI refer to as a gig again this year at Pine Grove Park here in Liverpool, an Easter Egg hunt for the Children. A lot of these children know us so when i get that

Thursday, March 14, 2013

"A pain in the Butt"

It may have sounded by this title that I was about to complain . Not the case .This is my latest needle felting, She is a pin cushion and what better title but "A Pain in the Butt" for her. She is made with 100% needle felted wool besides her glasses and pins. She has a felt covered cardboard base which keeps her erect waiting to be pinned. I think she would make a wonderful Mother's Day gift for a special Mom who sews.This sculptures whole body front ,back,  head and arms and of course butt can be used for pins.
No pins in this guy, meet Louie who was our house guest today he is the sweetest puppy. Some of you may have met him before at"The Moss Pot " here in Liverpool on Main Street and those who haven't been in should. You not only will be greeted by great tasteful , unique products and art but will see Louie who I would say is the shops Mascot. He is a gem indeed and it was a privilege spending time with him today. When I have a new house guest such as Louie I tend to get  a lot of work done inside in my  studio because I want to watch and make sure he is doing OK and not getting into anything, which he didn't , a very laid back puppy. He even caught on to using the dogie door, he is a smart little guy. He was a treat. So thanks Louie for being the reason I finished this piece today instead of outside doing something else which probably needed to be done as well:-)
  I have been busy thinking of  getting ready for our Summer Season. Liverpool and its interesting history as well as wonderful beaches hopefully will be a bustle again this Tourist season. We don't do but maybe one show yearly anymore, very unlike past years, we wore ourselves out all those years of being on the road travelling from one show to the other.
So anyone looking for me ,and wanting to see any of my works or have a request. By all means drop me a line.

Saturday, March 2, 2013

"Needle Felted House Guest"

 Meet Moka above and Needle felted Moka below. Moka has been spending a few days with us while his Mom enjoys sand and surf in a  warmer climate . During yesterdays snow   storm I decided to do a needle felting for his Mom to take with her on her next trip so that she has this little sweet heart with her at all times. We have been enjoying his lap dog energy and he is the right size for our little house. We also have another house guest, our adopted dog daughter Laura who stays with us quite often. Moka loves Laura if you get my drift? But they have been working things out and respecting each others space. So yesterday during the snowstorm I stayed busy making Moka in Wool and even though this picture is blurry I 'm sure you get the idea. I do and have done all breeds in the past and these little terriers with their long straight hair are the most difficult. But feel the Love even though.
Today we need to venture out and shovel the car out. Unlike our last snow storm the snow drifts aren't near as bad this time thank Heavens. As much as I love snow and building snowmen I must confess I have had enough. I hear the song birds singing from my open bedroom window mornings and feel so bad for them when we get these last kick at the can near spring snow events. For many years now I have found our Summers so very hot and every year I find shade where ever I can and have been known to complain but this getting older I believe I will prefer the heat to the shovelling and try and not  grump so much about the dog days of August this year. For years we floated and played in the Medway River not even thinking about the heat except on the hay fields but since moving to town  we no longer have that pleasure of the cool fresh clean Medway River waters.We tried a kiddie pool the first couple of years since moving to town and found that it was more work then worth. A larger pool would be an option ,only if we had a "pool person" to look after it for us. Again I believe more work then worth. Maybe this Summer I will gear up an outdoor shower, and we can cool off in that. Sounds like a plan. I am a believer in making light work, why punish ourselves. Make and keep it simple.  Now to warm up the shovel.



Thursday, February 28, 2013

"Drummers meeting"

I have been so busy of late. With my 60th birthday just gone by ,which turned out to be a huge surprise, a gathering given to me by a few great friends. And I mean surprise! for they totally got me off guard and I am impressed for sure as well as very grateful I have mailed off a yearly commission to a professor client /friend who I have been supplying wizards to for years now for special graduates of his.
Doing my art classes and volunteering at Wickwire . Then today Feb 28th I got to be entertained at the Dr. John C. Wickwire school by a talented and interesting African drummer/dancer "Mufaro Chakabuck" . She was amazing! We were thrilled to have been invited to the festivities  and being drummers ourselves and having done workshops in the past at schools and nursing homes it was a pleasure to be there to watch and enjoy Mufaro do what she does so well.  Thank you Mr. Stewart for the invite. The sound of all the drums in the Audtorium was wonderful.The smiles on the Kids faces was heart warming.
I hope to enjoy Mufaro and her drums again someday soon.
Even though a threat of a snow storms hangs over our heads for March 1st, I believe Spring is in the air. We have our Bunny suits nearby and ready for Easter. Those who know us know what I am referring to. Pictures again this year to follow . I have had my Bunny outfit since 1986 and have worn it to many places. I will share this year a bit of History as to when and why and where it has taken me. I have over the years out grown many of my Bunny dresses but the ears and feet always seem to fit. Why not I say, why not!! I LOVE what I do, maybe it all keeps me young in a tired kind of way:-)



Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Winter has arrived

Here is a photo of the latest painting I have just finished for a client.  Winter here on the South Shore of Nova Scotia has been late joining us as has been the case for a few years now since we moved into town from living on the Medway River. I will admit I miss snow for Christmas, many don't but it just seems that much more magical in a cold white way.
 I have been busy starting up my art classes again in this New Year and when not busy preparing for classes I have been working on this painting. Staying warm inside but really wishing for sticky snow so that the Child in me can build a Snow Person with no luck so far. The canvas size of this painting is 3x2' and is oil .It was challenging with all the green but I am happy with the results.
We have been helping with reading mentoring at one of our local Elementary schools again this year and have offered to help as well with their breakfast program a couple times a week. Enjoying doing this,one because we love the Kids and two, we miss our days in Mill Village where we worked with the Village school for I believe twenty plus years even before our son started school there. These smaller schools need so much help ,Teachers at times are stretched thin and any help with anything one can do is much appreciated as well so much needed. Just a simple background check and you too can find a smile appearing on your face from working with some great cute ,funny Children. Days when I return home after having the Children read to me I get inspired to sit down and work on my already started next Children's book. I see the art work in my head and I know it will be a great book for them of elementary age. Even if I must say so myself.I feel it. So saying that and now that I have my commissions finished and Christmas on the back burner again for another year , I will be getting down to writing and sketching and will share more on this in the days to come. I am excited about the illustrations I see for this book. Oh and yes I am practicing with my new Ukulele,but we will leave it at that, I could be doing better.
Here in Liverpool our local Theatre group "The Winds of Change " are now beginning to work on their next production "Les Miserables" yes a full blown Musical with almost ,if not forty people in the cast and even way more behind the scenes. Auditions are about to begin and by the beginning of March the cast will be chosen and things will start . With many Months ahead of hard work which I know will pay off once it hits the stage next November. Stay tuned for more on this as things roll along. I have offered again to help paint the set, which will be yet again another big one as in many plays before but this one may even be more involved. Mark your calendars and visit Liverpool to witness a great play.
Someday I would like to audition for a fun Character part again like in the last play I did. "Riches and Honor" written by Beth George a local playwright from here in Queens County. But to jump with both feet into this play would surely be way too much for a newbie like me, better to leave this one to the pros but I will do what I can to help.
One last thing regarding my art students before I leave you today. We work in many mediums and rug hooking will be one of those mediums coming up . My plan is to have the Children design their own images on the burlap . I was given a large rug hooking frame and am considering having the Children work together in groups  on one long table runner and when finished ,if everyone is in agreement we will then auction it off to raise funds which are very much needed for our local SPCA to help all the dogs and cats out there who are in need. As we did this past Christmas with the children's Santa painted mussel shells and raised almost $100.00 . This way they learn how to hook but I don't need to find more then one hooking frame and the kids get to learn about giving of their time for others in need. I will be sharing more on this as well in the Months to come.
So you can see I 'm not busy enough, but I sure am having fun!