Sunday, April 29, 2012

Thursday, April 26, 2012


This week is finals! So I made it through pretty much. Just one left tomorrow morning. Am I studying? NO! I am painting my nails and drinking wine and I wrote a letter to Hudson and I am playing with my wig. I finally got the bowl cut I've always wanted.
(Looks can be deceiving, but often they are not. Judge away, my friends.) 

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Beatrice Needs Art

So which one of these lovely prints do you think would most inspire the imagination of a little lady?

These are prints from natabalnova. Except that the one with text and the last one are actually a tote bags which I would treat as prints and have framed just the same. The prints are 6 by 9 inches and incredibly affordable. $12! The totes are 14 by 17 and just $15. I can't decide... 

Visit the etsy shop to see more really cool art!

Monday, April 23, 2012

How To Impersonate Andy Warhol

We are each doing a brochure on the topic of our choice. Our designs have to be based on a grid system. What do you think of my topic?
inside spread
back page


The Look:
Andy Warhol was an artist obsessed with celebrity and beauty. He not only wanted to portray American icons, he aspired to be one. His look was suitably iconic. 

To get the Warhol look, try a boldly striped shirt under a leather jacket and some dark glasses. For more of an evening look, pair a white oxford with a skinny tie or a turtleneck under a blazer. Wear black cigarette pants or shabby jeans. Top it all off with a silver wig.

The Mannerisms:
A gay man, Warhol’s friends in the 
early 1960s criticized him for being “too swishy.” His dyslexia and his 
difficulty with verbal communication led him to develop his signature style of expression.

He had a generic, non-specific enthusiasm for just about anything, often communicating with little more than  simple expressions such as “Wow” or “Oh, great.” 

The Props:
“When I got my first television set, I stopped caring so much about 
having close relationships.”

Warhol was enamoured of technology because it was a way to detach himself from emotional drama. He wanted to watch drama, but not be involved in it. 

Carry a camera or a tape recorder to experience similar detachment.  

The Muse:
Like all great celebrities, Warhol knew how to look good in pictures and it’s a lot easier to look great in a picture when you have a beautiful girl on your arm. 

In Edie Sedgwick, Warhol created a doppelgänger, but he had other muses such as chanteuse Nico and drag queen Candy Darling to inspire him as well.

If you want to be authentic in your impersonation, make sure you have a glamorous girl at your side. 

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Homework Date, plus a recipe

Last night my friend Beth came over and we Werked, with a capital W and with an e, so you know how serious we were. The evening involved a good deal of paint and conversation, a bit of swearing and a bit of a mess. Oh, and cocktails. Of course those. We used what was on hand.

The Cherry Navel

you will need:
-peach schnapps
-cherry juicy juice

Fill your glass half full of ice. Fill one quarter up with vodka, one quarter schnapps and juice to the top. Stir with the blade of your sharpest knife. You may use any knife, of course, but a sharper one is a charm for ease of study, apropos for a homework night.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Book Covers

Remember when I posted my sketches for these? I am pretty happy with how they turned out. Ok, I am thrilled with them. I love them and am satisfied with my 99/100 on this project. My sister Emma let me photograph her. Pretty, yes?

Tuesday, April 17, 2012


This is Amby's side of the story. He doesn't understand what a birthday is yet, so Bea's Big Day had him pretty mystified. We really made a whole dy of it. He got presents and cake too so that he wouldn't feel left out. The worst part for him was having to get all spiffed up after his nap for the 3 o'clock party:

Monday, April 16, 2012


Beatrice got this Star Wars shirt for her birthday. They didn't have any Dune shirts is all :P

I guess I should just say this already: I am political right now. Maybe it is a streak, maybe it is a way of life. Maybe my forever future. I don't know. But I am embracing my inner activist. SOOO, maybe I will blog as much as ever, but if not, it's for a good reason. If I do continue to get on here fairly regularly, don't be surprised if you see some opinions surface.

If you are curious about the issues I am studying and/or supporting, just ask! There is a contact button on the nav bar ^_^

The Shadow Industry, via Adbusters Magazine

My friend S. went to live in America ten years ago and I still have the letter he wrote me when he first arrived, wherein he describes the shadow factories that were springing up on the west coast and the effects they were having on that society.
"You see people in dark glasses wandering around the supermarket at 2 a.m. There are great boxes all along the aisles, some as expensive as fifty dollars but most of them are only five. There's always Muzak. It gives me the shits more than the shadows. The people don't look at one another. They come to browse through the boxes of shadows although the packets give no indication of what's inside. It really depresses me to think of people going out at two in the morning because they need to try their luck with a shadow. Last week I was in the supermarket near Topanga and I saw an old man tear the end off a shadow box. He was arrested almost immediately."
A strange letter ten years ago but it accurately describes scenes that have since become common in this country. Yesterday I drove in from the airport past shadow factory after shadow factory, large faceless buildings gleaming in the sun, their secrets guarded by ex-policemen with Alsatian dogs.
The shadow factories have huge chimneys that reach far into the sky, chimneys which billow forth smoke of different, brilliant colors. It is said by some of my more cynical friends that the smoke has nothing to do with any manufacturing process and is merely a trick, fake evidence that technological miracles are being performed within the factories. The popular belief is that the smoke sometimes contains the most powerful shadows of all, those that are too large and powerful to be packaged. It is a common sight to see old women standing for hours outside the factories, staring into the smoke.
There are a few who say the smoke is dangerous because of carcinogenic chemicals used in the manufacture of shadows. Others argue that the shadow is a natural product and by its very nature chemically pure. They point to the advantages of the smoke: the beautifully colored patterns in the clouds which serve as a reminder of the happiness to be obtained from a fully realized shadow. There may be some merit in this last argument, for on cloudy days the skies above our city are a wondrous sight, full of blues and vermilions and brilliant greens which pick out strange patterns and shapes in the clouds.
Others say the clouds now contain the dreadful beauty of the apocalypse.
The shadows are packaged in large, lavish boxes which are printed with abstract designs in many colors. The Bureau of Statistics reveals that the average householder spends 25 percent of his income on these expensive goods and that this percentage increases as the income decreases.
There are those who say that the shadows are bad for people, promising an impossible happiness that can never be realized and thus detracting from the very real beauties of nature and life. But there are others who argue that the shadows have always been with us in one form or another and that the packaged shadow is necessary for mental health in an advanced technological society. There is, however, research to indicate that the high suicide rate in advanced countries is connected with the popularity of shadow sales and that there is a direct statistical correlation between shadow sales and suicide rates. This has been explained by those who hold that the shadows are merely mirrors to the soul and that the man who stares into a shadow box sees only himself, and what beauty he finds there is his own beauty and what despair he experiences is born of the poverty of his spirit.
I visited my mother at Christmas. She lives alone with her dogs in a poor part of town. Knowing her weakness for shadows I brought her several of the more expensive varieties which she retired to examine in the privacy of the shadow room.
She stayed in the room for such a long time that I became worried and knocked on the door. She came out almost immediately. When I saw her face I knew the shadows had not been good ones.
"I’m sorry," I said, but she kissed me quickly and began to tell me about a neighbor who had won the lottery.
I myself know, only too well, the disappointments of shadow boxes for I also have a weakness in that direction. For me it is something of a guilty secret, something that would not be approved of by my clever friends.
I saw J. in the street. She teaches at the university.
"Ah-hah," she said knowingly, tapping the bulky parcel I had hidden under my coat. I know she will make capital of this discovery, a little piece of gossip to use at the dinner parties she is so fond of. Yet I suspect that she too has a weakness for shadows. She confessed as much to me some years ago during that strange misunderstanding she still likes to call "Our Affair." It was she who hinted at the feeling of emptiness, that awful despair that comes when one has failed to grasp the shadow.
My own father left home because of something he had seen in a box of shadows. It wasn’t an expensive box, either, quite the opposite – a little surprise my mother had bought with the money left over from her housekeeping. He opened it after dinner one Friday night and he was gone before I came down for breakfast on the Saturday. He left a note which my mother only showed me very recently. My father was not good with words and had trouble communicating what he had seen: "Words Cannot Express It What I Feel Because of The Things I Saw In The Box Of Shadows You Bought Me."
My own feelings about the shadows are ambivalent, to say the least. For here I have manufactured one more: elusive, unsatisfactory, hinting at greater beauties and more profound mysteries that exist somewhere before the beginning and somewhere after the end.
Peter Carey is an Australian born novelist and two-time winner of the prestigious Booker Prize. Peter worked in advertising to pay the bills until successfully publishing his first piece in his early thirties. He is currently the Executive Director of the creative writing program at Hunter College. The above story was originally titled Report on the Shadow Industry.

Friday, April 13, 2012

A New Friend

The days have been fairly warm around here. We spend as much time as possible outside. The children love playing with water best of all and Beatrice has discovered the joys of mud pies. Amby is not so much interested in mud as in flowers. Many of which are now dead or already picked.
One day, there was a little chipmunk just beside us in the wall. His cute little self was peeking out of a hole. I ran inside and got the camera and he let me get relatively close before freaking out and backing into the dark...
I was really surprised to see this little guy because chipmunks are so shy and quick to get away. I only ever see them dash by. What a cutie!!

Thursday, April 12, 2012


(It is a swimsuit, but she thinks that it's a ballet costume.) 

Today, this little girl is three! She will have presents and pink cake and a new dress. We will take her out -without Am- for dinner on Friday night because tonight her daddy has to work. Today will just be Beatrice fun. 

My sweet Beatrice Caroline is the smartest, silliest, prettiest girl. She loves reading and playing outside. She wants to be a cupcake when she grows up. Her favorite thing in the world is to see a firetruck or ambulance. She eats tomatoes like they are apples. 

Yesterday evening, she begged to go downtown. So we went. As soon as she was out of the car, she started running. Up the street, a block and a half down Main Street. She knew where she was going. She found the Chocolate Moose, ran in the front door, around the counter and grabbed a cupcake fresh off the rack! She had taken a bite before I could catch up with her! 

I love her free spirit and her determination. I love that she knows what she wants and will go after it. I hope she always keeps and cultivates those traits --which I will try to balance with foresight and tact, of course. 

Beatrice, I love you!

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Oh My Vintage

Regardless of how busy I am with school and babies and personal art projects, vintage always has a place in my heart and in my closet (and dresser and chest of drawers). I have lots of pretty things that will be in my shop soon. (The black dress is a really pretty 1960s wiggle dress in perfect condish.) So exciting! I'll let you know the minute they post to my shop. 

In the meantime, let's clear out some space for the new stuff. Here's a coupon code: CLEAR20 for 20% off or you can use READER for free shipping!

Disco Dress

This lovely number is hanging quietly in my shop waiting for adoption by a pretty dancing girl. Soft and a bit slinky with tulip sleeves and cascading ruffles. I may just have to keep it. Because you know I'm at the discotheque every night...

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Easter, Part II

We had two Easter dinners- one with his fam and one on mine. I contributed a vegan chocolate cake. Let me just go ahead and say this: I am not good at bundt pans. Don't worry, there are no pictures. Just family pictures! This is what we wore to dinner. The kids were so cuddly in their fancies!!! 
 Notice Bea's curlers. :)

Easter, Part I

The kids spent the night with their grandfolks last night, so James and I had a party! We wii danced like a bunch of fools and broke our fast and had dark wine with some of our favorite people. There are pictures, but they are far from flattering. 

James and I slept in. It is an amazing thing to wake naturally at 8:16 in a quiet house. I made coffee and started the long, arduous process of putting myself together. (I wish it was like in olden [Marie Antoinette] times when visitors called on ladies while they were in their toilettes [dressing rooms, not bathrooms] and everyone caught up on gossip and had their hair done and faces applied like that.) It doesn't really take that long, but Easter is special. 

I wanted to go to Mass, but instead went to the Presbyterian service. It was lovely. I think I was a little overdressed in a full length lace-over-satin gown amidst a crowd of cotton and denim. But for Jesus, on the day of His resurrection? I will wear my finest. (even when I go to church alone)
dress: vintage/thrifted
shoes: target