Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Happy Shots

Here are some photos that make me smile.

Someone in the kitchen at Wendy's decided to make that crispy chicken combo EXTRA crispy! The famous Wendy's fire happened here in Chatham about 5 years ago, and the irony of the sign was the talk of the town (at least amongst people like me who notice details like this).

Detail from the shadowbox I named "Control". I love the blank, almost haunted faces of these dolls. This shadowbox was my comment on the fashion industry and how it tries to brainwash women into thinking that they're too fat, no matter what size they are. I have actually heard that men like a little 'junk in the trunk'... so I think that women need to stop being so hard on themselves.

This is a gift tag I made out of an oyster shell I found on the beach in PEI. It features a starfish I bought in Key West. I love shells, and alphabet letters. Especially together. And when the ingredients for a good art tag are found while on vacation on an island.... oooh! Double score.

I took this shot while playing in the garden with my sons and their superhero figures. This tiger makes me smile every time I see it. It also reminds me of a simpler time when I actually had time to garden.... and when my kids still liked posing superheroes in the grass.

One of my cool car shots. Horsepower makes me happy. So does red. This shot makes me feel like I need to go racing at Mosport again. The day I spent at Mosport, screaming around the corners in an F2000 was the most liberating experience of my life. To date.

Detail from a shadowbox I called "Good & Evil". This old comic frame was on the 'evil' side of the shadowbox because women wanting to have careers over the ever-fulfilling combo of children & matching potholders are evil. Right? :)

A truly dead end in the Key West cemetery. Yes, this is the also the cemetery where you'll find the famous tombstone that says, "I told you I was sick." I did a whole series of shots from this cemetery- there are some stunning statues that look awesome against the blue, blue sky.

As the last few days of 2010 tick by, I wish all my art friends many happy snapshot moments that make them smile. Happy and creative 2011, everyone! Shoot what makes you happy!

Monday, December 20, 2010

Surreal Stick

The above picture is giving me flashbacks of how I felt after the annual family dinner yesterday... but I digress.

The Thames Art Gallery is having its annual Winter ARTcrawl on January 15, 2011 starting at 6pm. Once again, I have been entrusted to create the ceremonial baton that leads the masses down King Street from ARTspace to the William Street Cafe to the Thames Art Gallery. The theme this year is the Surreal- we are celebrating the life and times of Yves Tanguy, who died on January 15, 1955. On the right side of this page somewhere is a picture my last baton, the Croc Stick, that led the summer ARTcrawl down King Street in a New Orleans Funeral procession.

So now I need to make a surreal baton. And I'm all set. I have time over Christmas vacation. I have a pole. I have lots of plastic fruit. I have a toy train. I have a clock. Like most people, I equate surrealism with Salvador Dali, so I can't get the thought out of my head that I need to find a blowtorch and melt the clock.

At this point, you should scream. While it is true that I am a wicked gunslinger with glue bottles, puttin' a torch in my hand would require dexterity I do not possess at the moment and would put the Chatham-Kent Fire Department on high alert. It is frustrating when, as an artist, you realize that your super cool idea requires skills or equipment that you don't have. I may have to enlist the help of a friend or neighbour who won't keep asking me, "are you SURE you want me to do this?" (On that note, I'm still afraid to ask the building supervisor at work to run a Barbie doll through the circular saw so that she's in slices. People get reputations for things like that. And people talk- oh yes, they truly do. Mind you, with a sliced Barbie in a shadowbox, people would stop asking me why I put bird skulls on Barbie bodies. Actually, no they wouldn't.)

This Christmas, I'll try to make art responsibly. I will make a surreal baton that will shake the very foundations of the art world, just by slinging glue bottles. If I haven't gotten frustrated, taken matters into my own hands, found a blowtorch, and melted my own face off in the making of this surreal baton, I'll post a photo. Surreally.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Gothic Gingerbread

Laurie's Festive "Go Away" Gingerbread House

Recently, I decided to attend an adult gingerbread workshop with my friend Phyllis. Brilliant concept, really... pre-cut gingerbread slabs, 20 bowls of candy for decorating, a well-stocked bar, and no kids.

I had a glass of red wine to assist with my creativity.

The evening began rather innocently. I followed the usual procedure: lay out the gingerbread slabs, use white icing to glue the slabs together, lick your fingers, hold slabs together, lick your fingers again, grab a slurp of wine, lick your fingers again, taste-test a sugary spearmint leaf (yuck) and wash it down with red wine, hold slabs together, chat with your friend as she puts gumdrop breasts on her gingerbread man, drink some more.

The organizer brought me some black icing. Nobody else got black icing. (I suppose I have a bit of a reputation as not being totally enthralled with the whole Christmas thing. I think she thought it might help me get into the Spirit of the Season in my own special way.)

And... well... it seems I was feeling somewhat Tim Burtonesque.

The rest, as they say, is history.