Showing posts from November, 2008

Turtle ears

We are back in Colorado, but still adjusting to the changes.
The biggest difference is that it is totally dark by 5pm.
When we left NZ it was still day light by 9pm.
We would go out gardening by 5pm.
There is not much snow on the ground and the mountains are not yet open for skiing.

Before we left, I have mentioned to Jules that I am having a meaning crisis as an artist.
Thoughts about my place in the world as an artist, why and what am I doing here, were plaguing my mind.
On our way home at night, we listened to a radio program on NPR that centered around turtles.
Apparently a new fossilized turtle was found recently in China, with a fully form shell on his belly but not on his back.
It also had teeth, which brings up the question why did the turtle lose its teeth and why did it not have a shell on its back?
This discovery revolutionize the way we understand turtles world wide.

At the end of the show, the narrator mentioned that there are scientists that devoted their whole lives to researching…

Is there a typical art collector?

This is our last day here in NZ.
We are flying back to Colorado on Monday.
It feels a bit like "going back into reality."
Or to put it differently- back into the furnace.

I am sure that many people were not affected by the financial meltdown, but it has been exhausting in our household.
Jules, being a financial advisor in these current times, is experiencing much stress and I share his stress by association.

I actually sold two paintings this past week to an art collector from the USA via the internet.

In the local gallery in downtown Kohukohu, the student show that is currently on exhibit, is already half sold.
These are great news during a recession.

A collector in Miami said that collecting art is akin to an obsession and I had to agree.

Many people bought my art that are far from rich collectors.
For some people, my artwork was their first purchase of original art.
They simply fell in love with a painting and saw value in enjoying the art in their homes.

Today, there is really not a…

I am a child of a loving Universe.

It is a beautiful sunny day and I used it to do some weed whacking.
I felt good to be outdoor in the garden, weeding and mowing, taking in the blooming flowers, the colorful birds and the gentle breeze.

Yesterday was a very productive day in the studio.
I worked on converting one of the painting that I started with colorful pens- into a more complex sketchbook piece.
I added the grid and doodles, colorful symbols and circles of thick paint squeezed right out of the tube.

I feel so fortunate to be able to turn to my art for clarity and focus. I give thanks for all of the blessings in my life and eknowledgeh that there are many.

I affirm that I am (as everyone else is), a beloved child of the Universe!
I have a right to be here!
Every day in many ways my greater good comes to me.
There is a vast river of joy and peace and I am stepping into its midst now and forever!
Everything in the universe is energy and energy is love.
There is only light and only love within and around me and in the universe.

Our money saving plan- part 1

It is getting very cool lately to openly discuss your money saving plans.
Here is some of what we are doing to walk the earth lightly and to bring our expenses down.

The first thing is not to hire any kind of domestic help.
We have no cleaning lady, we do our lawns mowing, scrub cutting and gardening.
This became a bit more challenging when a big Tea-tree got uprooted and fell on an Avocado tree that snapped in half, in our garden.
The hill is very steep and it was hard to get a good footing.
But Jules took out the chain saw and while he sliced the trees to manageable pieces, I hauled and cleared the brunches and debris.

We shopped around and lowered our cars insurance by 50%

We canceled our cell phones service.
This was a big sacrifice. Jules used his Blackberry all the time, but since we decided to minimize travel, and since we get a very patchy cell reception while we are in CO anyway, we cut that out.

We spend almost no money on restaurants, This is because we live in remote places where th…

Cleaning the studio

Yesterday I did what I should have done a long time ago, but didn’t - I scrubbed clean my studio.
I didn’t just clean it, I organized and repositioned things to make the space feel open and clean.
My studio is on three levels.
On the lowest level, I store empty canvases and tools.
On the middle level I paint and have my paints stock.
In the loft I have a desk, drying racks and more storage.
It felt so good to have the place so nicely cleaned that I stayed well into the evening and started a new painting.

Painting in the studio

Today I am all achy from the day of staining.
In the studio I worked on the piece showing above and was able to photograph and post the rest of the pen paintings on my web site.
See it on
I sent an email to friends and clients wishing all a wonderful New Year.

Staining the decks

Today I woke up to a brilliant day. The sun was shining and not a cloud in the sky- the perfect weather for staining the decks.
I have made us a quick breakfast and while Jules brushed the leaves of the decks, I started staining.
It went very well until I run out of stain.
Jules drove to Kaikohe - a town about 40 Km on the other side of the harbor that is crossed with a vehicle ferry, to get more stain.
I was hoping to have the stain so that over the weekend I can finish the rest of the decks and a apply a second coat.
But now the weather forecast is showing a drizzle.
Needless to say, I did not get into the studio today.
Perhaps if it rains I will spend the weekend in the studio, developing my sketchbook project.

Sketching in colorful pens

While it was not a great day in the US financial markets, I enjoyed a great day in the studio.
I experimented with the idea of creating my sketchbook canvases without the grid that I was outlining to mimic an old fashion notepad or a sketchbook.
I decided to give it a try and if I still missed the grid, I could always add it in later.
But the sketching took a new direction and I ended up really enjoying sketching in colorful pens.
I left a lot of white space around the images.
I thought that it works better to intensify the power of the simple lines.
I will post some photos tomorrow and elaborate a bit more about it.

Back from Dunedin 2


Back from Dunedin

We are back from our trip to Dunedin.
It was fun and it provided us a nice break from our daily frame of mind.
In the city, we ate in cheap but delicious noodle houses that mostly cater to the many students that live in Dunedin and study at the Otago university.

We saw some movies in an alternative art- cinema house and visited the Dunedin Public Art Gallery.
We drove to the peninsula and had a wonderful time viewing the wildlife and birds that inhibits the region.

Back home in Kohukohu the weather is dry but very cloudy, so instead of staining, both of us tackled the mowing of the grass that is growing so fast now.
I Noticed that there are small peaches on our trees.
I picked a wonderful harvest from out vegetable garden of red lettuce, green lettuce, green beans and the sweetest broccoli I ever tasted.
I will make us a large salad for dinner.

Trip to Dunedin NZ

The resin coat on the small cube paintings was mostly successful.
Out of 30 pieces, 18 came out perfect and 12 needed to be re coated.
The humidity level in the studio is just perfect, the resin is a shiny and clear as a mirror.

Tomorrow we are driving to Auckland and on Saturday we are flying to Dunedin for a long weekend.
This will be our first visit to Dunedin and it will be fun to explore a new place, see the art scene and take in the sights.

We considered canceling the trip in order to save money, but Air NZ is not very good on refunds or exchanges and our hotel in Auckland is free (we redeemed hotel's points for it).
And after canceling two trips already, we've decided to go ahead with this pre-market collapse- scheduled one.

The Tao Te Ching

So we have elected a new president for the USA.
We hope that it will be the start of a better direction for America.
We do need to improve our standing with the rest of the world and there is so much home cleaning for us to do inside the USA.
We need to straighten our economy, raise moral, help establish a better health care system, bring the troupes back from Iraq and much more.

Today I've applied for four art shows that will take place this summer in Chicago, Denver and Columbus Ohio.
I hope that I will be successful in getting accepted into these shows.
I hope that my art will dazzle the judges...

The Tao Te Ching says that Hope and Despair comes from the same place, so instead of hoping- I trust that all will be well.
She who expect nothing gains everything.

I also applied the firs coat of resin on the small cube paintings.
I will only know the results of the first coat tomorrow morning.
I am keeping my fingers crossed.

Election time

This morning I woke up filled with optimism.
I started counting my blessings which are many fold.
I felt grateful and blessed and this spirit of gratitude stayed with me all thought the day.

It is election time both in the USA and here in NZ.
We have already mailed our absentee ballots back to the USA and we will be voting here in NZ this coming Friday.
it is hard to believe that when we will be back in the USA, we will have a new president.

I spent few hours cleaning and removing spider webs before I got into the studio.
I finally finished the painting of the sitting lady (still have no name for it) and continued working on the little robots.
I have only three little robots to finish before I start coating them.
Jules already brought the large folding table up to the studio and I set it up in preparation for the resin coating.
I have been humidifying the studio continuously for days and it feels so nice there.
(The resin must be applied in a non humid environment or it forms a cloudy surface on…

A great pasta dinner

It rained all day here in New Zealand.
Not the hard showers kind of rain, but a misty Grey drizzle that lasted all day.
Obviously my plans to stain the decks got delayed.

I am dehumidifying the studio in preparation for putting on the resin coat on the cube paintings.
They are looking great, now. They will look even better after the resin coating.
I forgot how wonderful it feels to be so absorbed in my art that the day slips from under you.
I raised my head and it was almost seven in the evening and time for a shower and dinner.
Luckily Jules made us a wonderful dinner of Penne pasta with sun dried tomatoes, asparagus and green beans from our garden, all tossed with Olive oil, spices and olives - delicious!!!

Do not plot and plan

Despite the weather forecast predicting rain, we enjoyed another lovely mild day.
I felt a little sluggish today, but still was able to work for a few hours in the studio.
I am realizing that our time in NZ is coming to an end.
We will be leaving in about three weeks back to the snow capped mountains of Colorado.
There is just so much I want to do before we leave.
I am still hoping for a dry weather spell to finish staining our decks.
The forecast calls for a rainy week, but maybe I can get a bit of staining done tomorrow.

Jules and I keep on talking about our future plans but both of us are getting tired of trying to plan the course of the future.
We decided to let the future unfold for us, to allow magic and miracles to come to us instead of trying to push the river.

Thoughts I had while I painted

I started the day by weeding the garden, and then I spent hours in the studio listening to music and painting.
So many thoughts circulated in my mind while I painted.
I thought about our choices in life, about the magic I've experienced and aboutbhow at times things felt as if they were designed by a higher power.

I thought about how our beliefs dictates our reality and how to improve mine.

The concentrated work on the small cube painting, helped me to focus my thoughts and I used the opportunity to listen to the stream of my thoughts.

Recently, I have been wondering often, why did I choose to become an artist and about how challenging this path had proven to be.
I know that it comes with so many blessings and that it fits my temperament very well, but It is such a rocky road filled with rejection and challenges to surmount.
Today I felt dispirited.