In December, I returned to Riyadh. I was able to share with my children one city in a country I had called home for many years. It was wonderful to see the house I grew up in, explore the desert with my children, and make a plein air watercolor painting at a gorgeous location.
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The newest painting, a self-portrait, is underway and my new taboret is working out incredibly well. I made the taboret from an old piece of furniture that was already on wheels. In its previous life it held a printer, and the bottom drawer was for files. Now, all those drawers hold paint supplies and more! I painted the top white and added a piece of glass cut to size. I duct taped the edges and started to work. I love all the space this piece of furniture allows!
The water crisis in Flint is disturbing. I am angry and saddened by the lead in the water and all the people affected for over a year without notification. It is criminal. This is one of many contemporary tragedy pieces that are now underway inspired by stories illustrated on Greek Pots.
I worked with students from Oakwood Intermediate School in Allendale creating the Imagination Station. This project combined drawing from our imagination and from observation. Each person created a self portrait, drawing from what they saw in the mirror. Students also drew from their imagination. They had to draw crazy creatures using different weights of pencils. I also gave each student creative starters like, "Draw your dream home, place it on the back of an animal." or, "Imagine you are flying, how are you doing this?" or, "Draw an animal, add a tutu, what is the animal doing?" Then the students made the letters for the Imagination Station. Finally, each student cut around the creative drawings and added them to the larger piece. The self portraits surround the imagination station.
Art Extravaganza was a success- I taught kids about printmaking and drawing. They each went on to create there own work!
This painting, created for the Allendale library to commemorate their 50th year, incorporates 16 Fairy Tales (15 are Grimm) and many buildings of Allendale. The buildings are painted and sewn together creating the city scene. Centered in the foreground is the library. Behind it, Lake Michigan Drive divides the library from the rest of the town. The fairy tale characters are painted on top throughout the town. These include Snow White and the Seven Dwarves, Cinderella, Hansel and Gretel, Jorinde and Joringel, Mother Hulda, Rumplestiltskin, Jack and Beanstalk, Sleeping Beauty, Pied Piper, One Eye, Two Eyes, Three Eyes, Puss in Boots, Rapunzel, the Frog Prince, Bremen Town Musicians, Little Red Riding Hood, and the Three Billy Goats Gruff. The sky and ground, originally screen printed for the underpainting, are layered with multiple brushstrokes and colors creating the finished piece.
These vessels are the start of a new drawing project. I am excited about using charcoal as the medium through the screen !