Balancing painting, parenting, crafting and book loving one day at a time...

Balancing painting, parenting, crafting and book loving one day at a time...

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Excitement, Exhibits and Exhaustion

I've been busy lately!  The month of March was one of extras.  Extra hours at work, extra hours volunteering at my kid's school, and extra opportunities, specifically in the area of art exhibitions!  Since I last posted, I've had an article written about my Lakewood sketches, am currently exhibiting them at the Beck Center for the Arts in Lakewood, and started 2 new paintings in my Lakewood century homes series! 


So.....alot of excitement, exhibits, and exhaustion!

In the meantime, I've started a doll and house quilt for my daughter, which I decided to hurry up with before she becomes a teenager (she's 7, but rapidly becoming obsessed with Nick TV characters who are teenagers and who are cool beyond belief).  I also helped her and a friend make a doll quilt out of scraps.  This pattern is called a bargello pattern and is a good way to use up scraps. 

Speaking of art exhibits, I visited a wonderful collage show that had several artists friends of mine in it called "Piecing it all Together:  The Art of Collage",  at the Valley Art Center in Chagrin Falls, Ohio until May 19th. It rekindled my interest in the medium, which I go back to every so often.  It's such a great way to combine media, be it drawing, photo, fiber, text and painting.  I've always been fascinated with the dialogue between words and images and collage manages to fit all of that in.  I came away with a new idea:  create a collage that ilustrates a true life event.  My mother was born in 1941 and the day they bombed Pearl Harbor was the first day she went out in her baby carriage.  What an interesting collage that would make!

Then I co-chaired an Arts Event at my kids school, the first ever.  Students had artwork hanging in the hallways, got to show off their musical ability through performance and even their acting ability through being "wax figure artists" of famous composers or artists.  My kids got to be wax figures.  My son picked Leonardo da Vinci.  With one day to go, we scraped together a costume from what we had around the house.  A donated Jesus-like vest/robe thing became his painters smock, along with a crushed velveteen brown scarf, and a cap with a peacock feather that became his hat.   

My daughter wanted to be a French artist, so we found Rosa Bonheur, a 19th century female painter who had to ask permission from the police to wear pants!  She was not allowed to paint from the human body, so she painted animals, even from carcasses.  She was quite a woman in her day!  All in all, the event went very well, and the wax figures were my favorite part.

My son's math class got to visit the Akron Art Museum to see the M.C. Escher show, to study the relationship between math and art.  I have talked in this blog about the relationship between art and science, but here is another relationship.  Often people equate mathematics with music and there is a connection there.  But Escher and his "stairs to nowhere" and tesselations of geese becoming fish make the connections between pattern, shape and math.

Latest books read include, "When Everything Changed:  The History of American Women from 1960's to the Present" by Gail Collins and "The Hotel at the Corner of Bitter and Sweet" by Jamie Ford.  The former was excellently done and really showed what things were like for women not so long ago.  I came of age at the edge of all of this and reading this book really put in into perspective for me.  The Ford book was a love story between a Chinese boy and a Japanese-American girl in Seattle in 1942, the year the US put Japanese-Americans in internment camps.  There is also a subplot about jazz.  Very well done and worth a read.


  1. Hi Jill!

    Per your comment about math and art, I wanted to share this website with you that I thought Fox and Charlotte would like. I first saw one of her videos on best of you tube and really liked it. I was happy to hear she had a website - haven't explored it yet, but here it is:

  2. P.S. from Jan - The first video I watched was about snakes and doodling.

  3. Glad to see some pix from your exhibition. They look great hanging all together. Glad you liked the collage show, too. Oh, and thanks for the book recommeendations : )