Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Pink Blossoms

Josh and I were down in Pennsylvania earlier this week and got to enjoy a preview of what will happen in Massachusetts in about a month.  These blossoms, plus forsythia and daffodils cheered the surroundings on an otherwise gray and rainy day.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010


A fun art project for cats....


Gilligan, my black and white tabby, decided to make some art while I was taking a tea break.   I was having a nice little bit of down time between applying layers of gesso on cardboard last week.  Since Gilligan seems to almost always have to be where ever I am, it wasn't long before he joined me on the sofa as I was finishing the last sips of tea from my mug.  Break over, I stood up and noticed little white prints on the floor.  I followed the tracks back to my studio where they had originated.  Looks like someone was producing some art today.  Luckily, the gesso wore off his paws before he hopped up on the chocolate brown velour sofa.  I think I'll keep the prints on my chair.

Monday, March 22, 2010

South Pacific Party

The South Pacific themed party I wrote about in a post a little over a week ago took place this past Saturday night.  It was such a fun evening spent with lots of interesting, talented and creative people.  I believe that most guests and performers felt that our host, Sean,  performed a minor miracle.   He transposed, arranged and conducted all of the songs from the musical. He also enlisted a variety of friends and performers who wanted in on the action to perform the songs and make them come to life in a very real and vibrant way.  Sean gathered players from the Holyoke Civic Symphony and we all enjoyed having a pit orchestra (seriously!) create an authentic musical atmosphere...there was a harpists, flutists, violinists, bass players, drums, clarinet, and basson!

Members of the old time country band Appalchain Still played "Dites Mio" which lead into a gut bucket version of "Filet Gumbo".  They also backed me up on my solo number, "Honey Bun",  and did a great job.  I got to dress down as a navy sailor at the beach with aviator sunglasses, dog tags, sailor's cap, tank top, boots, green military style jacket and cut off jeans and sing about my "One hundered and one pounds of fun"!  

Some members of Boston's Gay Men's Choir formed the "Navy" chorus and performed "Nothing Like a Dame".   A bunch of us women singers came together to form the "Nurse's" chorus and sang "Wash That Man Right Outta My Hair". 

Sean and Steve transformed their studio in the arts and industry building into a Bali Hai like tropical delight.  Every detail was thought of and they both created a wonderful atmosphere for an original party.  I love witnessing how their vision and hard work made all these disparate strings and pieces come together and form such a memorable night of entertainment.   The Guava and Rum punch was fantastic, the leis looked so festive and all in all this party was a truly great way to celebrate the start of spring.  

Saturday, March 20, 2010

There's no place like home... Part 1

I live on a country road out in the mountains of western Massachusetts.  Things are wild and beautiful around here during all the seasons.  Half of the road is paved and half is dirt.  There is something kind of romantic about a dirt road.  However, the reality of mud and potholes does do a number on our vehicles.  We've been going for walks this past week and enjoying how spring is showing it's face.  There is a lovely swamp at the bottom of the hill right down the road.

The ice is almost melted which means the canadian geese have returned and the wood ducks too.  They will raise their babies here this spring and summer.  It's nice to have our wild neighbors return and I can hear them "talking" to each other in the evenings.

I took a walk on Weds. with my friend and her son.  There was a parked car at the swamp and a woman stepped out and yelled up to us, "There's a Bald Eagle down here!  Come and look."  We ran down the hill and stood there in amazement as we saw the huge and majestic bird perched on a tree branch over the water.  Eventually it hopped off it's perch and took to the skies.  It soared in circles above the water getting higher and higher in elevation and slowly glided off over the mountain and out of sight.  What a neat thing to see!  I hope to see it again.  I've been back with my camera to see if I can catch a photo but so far no luck.

At the same swamp this week my husband saw an otter catch a fish and eat it on a rock.  I'm hoping to see the otter sometime on my walks as well.  There is a lot of great activity around here.

Down the road a ways from the swamp is a hay field with a maple tree in the middle of it.  It is one of my favorite trees on my road.  There is space around the tree to see and appreciate it's full shape.  I dream of getting out there one of these full moons to sit under it for awhile to take in the moonlight.  The nights are getting warmer.

Friday, March 19, 2010

New Painting

This week I got some studio time in despite both cars needing brake repairs on the same day and a very sick chicken that required a lot of attention.  Unfortunately the chicken died and is the first to go of the six chicks I raised about 2 years ago.  I was sad to have her go but also know that raising "farm" animals is a little different than taking care of my cats.  Taking chickens to a vet and paying $50 to just walk through the door isn't an option.

So this week's planned work was pushed to the back burner as more important things needing my attention came up.  I'm learning to try to deal with what comes my direction and let go of feeling like I can control how I use my time every day.  The art making and preparation for my show was put on hold but I am hoping to put some time in tomorrow in my studio.  Things are  coming together for my show in 2 weeks.

Here is the painting that I finished this week.  I don't have a title for it yet but I thought I'd still post it today.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Bearing Fruit

Here in my studio I have a lovely fig tree.  I bring it inside in the fall when the leaves start to change and the temperature drops.  Usually sometime in January it starts pushing new growth.  This year the growth started a little early as I set my art studio back up to begin using it this past December.  I can't help but say I see some sort of  meaning or connection here.  It gets even better.  About a month ago, as I've been busy painting and organizing for my art show and spending lots of time in this little room listening to great music and singing along while happily creating, I noticed the tree began bearing fruit!  I bought the tree three years ago and it has never born fruit.  This is the first year that I anticipate eating fresh home grown figs.  For me personally, this year has been spent pushing myself to grow and produce as I follow my path and passions.  Every day I look at the fig tree and feel a sense of comradeship, connection and purpose as we grow together.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

A Double Shot of Good Music

It's been a good music week.  A friend called the other night and invited us to see The Chieftans with her and some friends at UMass' Fine Arts Center.  What a show....there were lots of guests and surprises.   Irish style dancers, a scottish "mouth music" singer, and full on local bag pipe group.  They mixed up their set with all kinds of musical influences...bluegrass, spanish guitar, mexican ballads.  Apparently they have a new album out featuring Ry Cooder.  The album is called San Patrico where the musical souls of two nations, Ireland and Mexico, come together.  Interesting.  Lets see if I can find a song to post....   Even better, I found a post about the making of the album which is totally inspiring!  The video highlights a beautiful example of the coming together of communities of musicians and cross cultural sharing.   It's one of the reasons I love music so much!  Check it out...

Tonight I saw more great, live music of the local vein and I only had to roll down the hill to the local "corner store" to enjoy it.  Appalachian Still is the name of the band and some friends of mine are in the group.  They all played a wonderful set of old time string band music: originals and old favorites like Deep Ellum Blues and Easy Chair.  Good fun.  It was a full house and was an excellent way to shake off the damp chill this evening.  I'll be singing Honey Bun with this band in a couple weeks.  Appalachian Still's bass player is hosting a South Pacific themed party.  Interesting, huh?  Old time string band meets South Pacific.  I can't wait.
Here's a link to their website if you are so inclined to check them out...


Welcome and thank you so much for visiting where earth meets sky today!  I am interested in sharing many interests here... my art work, other creations that inspire, thoughts about the creative process, photographs, the gardens I work with and the music I love to listen to, find interesting and sing. 

Living a creative life is what I love to do. I paint, draw, sing my heart out, take photographs, garden, get my hands dirty and grow flowers, herbs, vegetables and fruit. I love to cook and eat. I raise chickens and a couple of friendly cats. I get inspired by art, beauty and passion. I love the four seasons. I long to travel... through a song, a book, a piece of art or a performance if I can't physically go a long distance. I dance within my senses...

My intention is for this blog to be a window into and mirror of my creative process.  It's an online journal of sorts.  A place to share and reflect and a place where others can join in on the conversation.  I love receiving comments and emails so feel free to introduce yourself, say hello, share your thoughts and creative inspirations.  I hope you will return from time to time as I plan on regularly adding tidbits that reflect my love of the visual arts, music and gardens. Enjoy!