I’m happy to share that two of my paintings are included in the 38th Annual Juried Exhibition at the Barbara Conrad Art Gallery in Durango, Colorado, opening tomorrow:

July 11 – August 9
Opening reception: Friday, July 11 from 5-7 p.m.

Durango Arts Center: Barbara Conrad Art Gallery
802 East Second Avenue
970-259-2606

I’m excited that I’ll be able to attend the opening reception and spend a few days in this beautiful town. In addition to getting to meet new people and experience the art and culture of Durango, my mini-trip will include camping, hiking and lots of new scenery for sketching and painting.

Information on this year’s juror, (more on the Durango Arts Center website) durangoarts.org:
Lisa Tamiris Becker has been active as a curator and arts administrator for over 18 years and has curated and organized over 50 major exhibitions with a primary focus on hybrid interpretations of modern and contemporary art. She serves as the Director of the University of New Mexico Art Museum in Albuquerque, NM, where she has curated and organized major recent exhibitions such as From Raymond Jonson to Kiki Smith: The UNM Art Museum at Fifty Years; Melanie Yazzie: Geographies of Memory; and The Blinding Light of History: Genia Chef, Ilya Kabakov, and Oleg Vassiliev. Her exhibitions have been reviewed or featured in Art in America, Time Magazine, The Wall Street Journal, and The BBC, amongst other publications.

Flat Rock Falls, Oil/Canvas, 18 x 18"

Flat Rock Falls, oil/canvas, 18 x 18″

Window Bed, oil on canvas, 16 x 20"

Window Bed, oil/canvas, 16 x 20″

Here is the latest oil on canvas painting inspired by the landscape surrounding Buffalo Thunder Casino and Resort where I recently visited.

Buffalo Thunder Quilt, oil/canvas, 16 x 20"

Buffalo Thunder Quilt, oil/canvas, 16 x 20″

 

A friend recently introduced me to The Staves – a British trio of sisters. (Thank you Kimberly!)

I’ve been listening to them a lot while painting.

This Friday I thought I’d share one of the songs with you to get you in the wind-down weekend mode. Not only is it a beautiful song but it has quilt images superimposed! I found that part particularly inspiring and very suited to my Quilted Landscape series.

Enjoy the song and have a happy Friday!

still  #1 from Mexico music video

still #1 from Mexico music video

still #2 from Mexico music video

still #2 from Mexico music video

My new painting Winter Walk is complete:

Winter Walk, Oil/Canvas, 16 x 20"

Winter Walk, Oil/Canvas, 16 x 20″

If you recall, last week I decided to re-work a painting I made earlier this year. I tried to document the change so I could show you on the blog… but half-way through I became too immersed to take photographs. Oops. Hopefully you can still see how the old painting acted as a foundation for the new one:

Winter Desert (title before piece was entirely re-worked)

Winter Desert (before piece was entirely re-worked, and re-named)

in progress 01

in progress 01

in progress, 02

in progress, 02

in progress, 03

in progress, 03

in progress, 04

in progress, 04

in progress, 05

in progress, 05

Advice for artists:

I’ve been testing a theory that if you don’t like a painting you’re creating, simply add a dog to the image. Now, I’ve only tried it out a few times but so far I’ve been quite happy with the results.

I’m not done working on this painting but thought I’d show you the pooch I painted in today. I was out on the town this Spring making my watercolor portraits of Portales when this guy scampered by, shaggy fur blowing in the breezes, sunlight catching his chinny chin chin. I snapped a photo for future use and am so glad I did. It made me deliriously happy to paint him.

Just ignore the chaos currently surrounding him… it will all be worked out soon ;)

Desert Dog (in progress detail), oil/canvas

Desert Dog (in progress detail), oil/canvas

 

There is something very satisfying about painting snow, blankets and a stormy sky when it’s actually hot, dry, painfully sunny and… hot outside. Don’t get me wrong, I love the heat… but I love wherever my imagination takes me more.

Here is the latest Quilted Landscape painting featuring a dear friend’s polydactyl cat:

Cosy Desert, oil/canvas, 16 x 20"

Desert Shelter, oil/canvas, 16 x 20″ $200

 

Today I finished up the my latest piece for the Quilted Landscape series:

Against Pillows, oil/canvas, 18 x 18"

Against Pillows, oil/canvas, 18 x 18″, $200

I also touched up two new pieces for the Southwest series. These were done 90% en plein air (outdoors) around Portales, New Mexico this spring.

Southwest House, oil/canvas, 8 x 10"

Southwest House, oil/canvas, 8 x 10″, $150

Backyard Fence, oil/canvas, 8 x 10"

Backyard Fence, oil/canvas, 8 x 10″, $150

I just got back from a mini vacation with my husband to the Santa Fe region of New Mexico.

The view from our balcony was stunning and my favourite part of the trip was watching the light change on the mountains:

Working on the balcony

Drawing on the balcony

Balcony View, ink in sketchbook

Balcony View, ink in sketchbook

We did some exploring in the town when we weren’t reading by the pool and enjoyed some delicious coffee and tea at the Station Cafe:

Cafe table at the Station

Cafe table at the Station

My favourite piece from the trip:

Sundown on the Mountains, Santa Fe, Watercolor and ink in sketchbook, 3.5 x 5.5"

Sundown on the Mountains, Santa Fe, Watercolor and ink in sketchbook, 3.5 x 5.5″ $50 unframed

Hello hello!

I’m excited to announce the test-knitting phase of my latest pattern is complete and the stuffed-toy pattern, (complete with video tutorials) is now available on ravelry.com and the Multicraftual etsy shop! For more information on this pattern and to see pictures of completed projects, visit the multicrafual blog.

This brings my total number of published knitting designs up to 5 with two more shawls in the test-knitting phase. Stay tuned for more pattern releases!

My designer page on ravelry.com

My designer page on ravelry.com

Chaz one of the four feline co-hosts of the Multicraftual video podcast meets his new friend

Chaz one of the four feline co-hosts of the Multicraftual video podcast meets his new friend

Dear readers,

Has it really been four months since I opened the virtual door to my studio and shared what was going within it? Wowzahs.

Let me tell you, I knew this year would be busy but I really miss sharing my day to day – or at least week to week – progress with you. I don’t think there is an easy way to catch you up on all my work but I will try my best to give you a taste. I apologize for the poor quality of the photographs : I’m using my phone camera to maximize efficiency!

1. Illustration for the biology textbook has been an ongoing project since the Christmas/holiday season. This consists of researching, traditional sketching and working with digital illustration programs. I usually spend my mornings on this project. Below is a drawing in progress from the past week.

biology textbook illustration in progress

biology textbook illustration in progress

2. Next, I give you three 8 x 10″ oil paintings in progress that are being worked en plein air in my town, Portales, New Mexico. (They’re just sitting on my easel to dry between painting sessions… it’s the only place my cats don’t seem to mess with them!) They belong to a series of paintings of the Southwest I have been developing sporadically for the last few years . Working on them has been a nice complement to my “Portraits of Portales” project which I focussed on all autumn, and have tried to make a bit of time for in 2014.

en plein air paintings from Southwest series - in progress

en plein air paintings from Southwest series – in progress

I believe I have mentioned the “Portraits of Portales” project before and will certainly mention it again. My intention is to publish them in book form, rather than display them in a gallery. This will heighten the intimacy of the pieces and embrace my intention of creating a “keepsake” of this small town. But I will share more on that project at a later date. This week it has not been worked on so no progress pics here for you!

3. Also still in the works is my Crafty Coloring Book. I only decided this week that it needed to be pulled to the top of my priority list after the biology textbook illustrations. It’s delightfully fun to work on and provides a break from the technical illustration while still keeping me “in shape” drawing-wise.

portion of a coloring book drawing in progress

portion of a coloring book drawing in progress

4. Lastly, I have been spending my evenings finalizing three new knitted shawl designs. Two are in the test-knitting phase and the third is close behind. The motivation behind this project? A fast-approaching deadline!

Detail of the Happy Happy Shawl in progress

Detail of the Happy Happy Shawl in progress

On April 1st the Multicraftual Podcast Ravelry group will be casting on any of my knitted designs. For two months participants will post their progress and finished object pictures in the corresponding group discussion threads to win prizes. There will be coupon codes for discounted pattern prices and other random goodness distributed via the video podcast I host with my long-distance bestie Liby Ball. If you are interested in watching our podcast while sitting down with your own knitting or crocheting, go check out the Multicraftual blog or subscribe on iTunes!

As you can see, if you’ve read this far… I’m keeping busy! In fact… a little too busy. I’m the kind of person who can sprout in every direction and need intense pruning to look at all respectable. I’m currently reading “Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-Free Productivity” by David Allen. Perhaps I will give a review on that when I finish it… hahahahahaha… first I will have to learn how to reign in my many projects, harness my creativity and GET THINGS DONE.

Wish me luck!!

If you’d like, tell me about what projects you’re working on and what creative activities you’re most excited about in the comments section below. Are you a see-one-project-through-to-the-finish-line kind of person, or a wildly-sprouting-crazy-face like myself? It’s time I get to know YOU more and try to enhance the online creative community.

Thanks so much for reading!

Jessie

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 180 other followers

Follow me on Twitter

Archives

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 180 other followers