a moment in my world

this is a corner in my living room. i love it. the fern i have had since it was a small clipping. The crystal is a fantasy quartz from Brazil. I was at a weekend music festival with my boyfriend ben about 4 years ago... i was not feeling very well...so to cheer me up Ben got this for me. he knew i was eyeing it and had the person selling it lie and tell me that someone else had purchased it. then he surprised me. it was very sweet. i love crystals and have been slowly collecting them for a decade. The print in this corner was made by a NYC artist who I met at the Union Square farmers market. I think it is a perfect little print.

I am very excited because tomorrow I am going to R&F Paints to work in their studio for the day. i am going to go encaustic crazy. i will share the work I make over there in a few days. there is a big snow storm coming. so (fingers crossed) i hope it all works out. up to this point i have been making pieces no larger than 8x10", but I have prepped a larger board to work on. i think it is roughly 20x20". I am looking forward to see what comes of it.


Vintage in Print

Wednesday is the official day i have set aside to share an internet based archive. I have such a passion for looking through vintage images- and I have now designated an entire day, once a week, to it! I would like to share with you The National Archives Collection "A New Deal for the Arts" . This archive has a really interesting collection of art & poster art made during the Great Depression era.

Many of you reading this already know that I have a deep interest in the history of America during the 1930's/early 40's. It is a profound time for many reasons. Out of all the revolutionary change-deprivation-weather catastrophes- migration-& daily struggles- came amazing artwork. Some of it represents a working person's view of the country in a way never seen in the U.S. prior to this time. Other works of art were commissioned by the government and on one hand show the beginning stages of extensive welfare outreach & on the other hand use the art & posters to propagandize.



Patti has just blog tagged me. I have never been blog tagged before. i feel so honored.

Here are the rules:

1) Find a book closest to me with at least 123 pages.
2) Turn to page 123 and go down five sentences.
3) Type the next three lines into your blog.
4) Tag five other bloggers.

I have to say...anything that encourages me to open a book I am all for. I am currently at work (and really should not be blogging) and am surrounded by an awesome library of photography books. I grabbed a random book that was on the closest shelf called "Prairie Fires & Paper Moons: The American Photographic Postcard 1900-1920". I have never seen it before and it actually looks pretty awesome. I may bring it home tonight to look through it more. here is the requested entry & the photograph printed on page 123.

"Dr. Stough was somewhat less successful in his efforts. He led many poorly attended campaigns and suffered frequent setbacks as the requests of his fiery temper and lack of political finesse. In June 1915, he became the defendant in a libel suit in Hazelton, Pennsylvania, after denouncing an alderman, a liquor dealer, and two city officials as "riff raff" and "plug uglies."

In response i will tag:

Have fun!


woodstock visitor

I was sitting in my living room reading a book yesterday, when I looked up and saw this lovely creature standing outside my window. he/she was munching on a bush and having a good old time. i always get worried when i see a young deer on its own. I just hope its mother is ok and has not been hit by a car (like soooo many deer in upstate NY). so i left some sprouts and lettuce outside my door just in case it needs more food later.

watching him/her for that brief moment really made my day. so cute!


my sunday local artist ramble

It is Sunday...it is early in the morning...and I have the rambles. once again, in the shadows of the famous levon helm, here i am- ready to chat about another local artist who, frankly, kicks butt.
This Sunday is all about Tatana Kellner who lives and works in Rosendale, NY. She is the co-founder and artistic director of the Women's Studio Workshop (which thanks to their awesome fundraiser, the Chili Bowl, I got to eat some stellar veggie chili last night and bring home a beautiful bowl!) Tatana seems to be involved in everything- artist books, prints, drawings, photography, installation and sculpture. It is so exciting for me to observe an artist with such incredible talent consistantly creating new work & on top of that, working within a non-profit arts organization that gives so much back to the arts community. Last time I was visiting WSW, she was working on a book that was printed with invisible ink. In order to reveal the ink, you had to physically iron the pages on a board. it was stunning. i cannot wait to see the finished piece. Tatana's perspective on the human condition is quite unique. Her work is full of layers and complexities, just like we all are.

Just to share a few words about WSW (off their website)-
"The Women's Studio Workshop was founded in 1974 by four women artists, Ann Kalmbach, Tatana Kellner, Anita Wetzel, and Barbara Leoff Burge. They were committed to developing an alternative space for artists to create new work and share skills. Programs were centered on the artistic process and often informed by feminist values."

WSW has some amazing things going on that I suggest checking out. For one- their artist in residence, fellowship, and internship programs are amazing. They also offer classes in papermaking, printmaking, book arts, photography, and ceramics. They have a small exhibition space as well. The property is in a stunning location in Rosendale and an ideal spot for an artist to live & work for a while.

Hats off to Tatana and WSW for contributing so much to our valley.

partying with dead celebrities

I also want to thank Lauren for throwing, yet another, great party last night. it was especially cool cause all these dead celebrities showed up...i could not help but take this once in a lifetime picture of june carter, bonnie (of bonnie & clyde) and ms. anna nicole smith. it was pretty incredible.
happy birthday darlin'!


an internet score

This is not a figment of your imagination. These are sun bathing roaches. apparently humans are not the only species in need of a tropical vacation.

In all seriousness folks...what the hell are people thinking? The Cockroach Hall of Fame is a real place- with lots of dressed up cockroaches. Hey- you can even see one dressed like your favorite celebrity!

got to love the world wide web for supplying hours of endless fun and amazement.


total eclipse of the heart...i mean moon

It is Wednesday...which is technically Vintage in Print day. But..in honor of our upcoming lunar eclipse (which will appear tonight) I am sharing a not so vintage picture made as the moon moved through the stages of the eclipse in 2007 by George Lovely. He took this series of images from which he created a montage. Go George. This is awesome!

This is making me think about art that was inspired by our moon. I cannot help but first mention one of my favorite artist's Sarah Moon...even though her work has nothing to do with the actual moon I have to mention her...

or Ansel Adam's famous piece called Moon Rise...

or Alphonse Mucha ....

that is all i can think of for right now....know any others?

gaze at the stars tonight and think about why the moon is so inspiring. i certainly will.

NASA created this graph to show the times of the eclipse. But if you want to learn more about Lunar Eclipses for Beginners is a good start.


photogram becomes scanogram

Today in class I will be demonstrating scan-o-grams (which are a take on photograms but made on a flat bed scanner instead of in a wet darkroom). Stan Sherer taught this in a class I took with him and I thought it was pretty effective. In honor of the disappearing photogram I have shown the work of Adam Fuss (see above). He makes lots of wild images using just photographic paper and objects (no camera).

I also found some scan-o-grams by a professor I had at SUNY New Paltz named Carmen Lizardo (below). I remember her being pretty awesome and never forgot these pictures that she showed us in her Design class.


my monday local artist ramble...

I was in NYC over the weekend and did not have the time to blog. So, instead of my weekly Sunday local artist ramble, this week it will have to be a "monday" ramble. this is not too tragic, i hope.

Today I am highlighting the work of the wonderful artist Barbara Ess. Barbara is faculty at Bard College which is across the river in Rhinebeck, NY. Her work has an intense mystical and dream-like quality to it. I just love it.
Aperture published a book of her work called I am not this Body which got a lot of press. It is a wonderful collection of images that I suggest checking out.

Hats off to yet another amazing Hudson Valley artist....


I heart silk painting

this is a detail of a silk scarf I recently made for a friend. she loves Day of the Dead so I wanted to give it a try. Painting on silk is a nice way for me to relax. I would like to start selling them on etsy or in local shops....but I am not sure...


Happy Valentine's Day!

It is a beautiful day in Woodstock. the sun is shining for the first time in what feels like a month! Everyone is cheerful (and warm). loving life.

Here a a few vintage Valentine's Day cards that i thought were kind of funny (and very strange).

I do not know what to think of this holiday. I am really in love so it encourages me to want to celebrate that- but I am also well aware that I do not need a designated day to express my feelings. The truth is...any day that encourages eating chocolate is alright by me.


Vintage in Print

Wednesdays are all about the archive.

These photographs
are part of the CPW photographic archive which is held at the Dorsky Museum at SUNY New Paltz. These people pictured are dressed in costume for the infamous Maverick Festival which took place in Woodstock in the early 1900's. The Maverick was an artist/musician colony founded in 1902. Its existence helped to shape this area as well as enrich it with amazing art and music. Today, all that is left of the Maverick colony is an amazing music space called Maverick Concerts. They have live music events on the weekends all summer. I work on the weekends in the summer so I have not been to a concert yet...but I have heard that it is wonderful and worth checking out.

You can read more about Maverick and see many more photos at the Dorsky website.



If you are near Amherst, Massachchusetts from Feb. 18-29 keep an eye out for the exhibition Look at the Student Union Gallery on the UMass campus. Joetta Maue has curated the show to take a look at the state of photography through the eyes of UMass students and alumni. The reception is Wednesday February 20 from 4-6.
I have a piece in the show (see above) from the gas mask series. I have been working on this project for many years. I think gas masks are so interesting and want to start taking pictures of them again. So...I am in search of some more gas masks. If you have any that you would like to sell me, please contact me via email.


my sunday local artist ramble

it is a beautiful winter day in woodstock. snow has fallen which has lightly covered the trees and roads with a dusted layer of fluffy whiteness (see view from my studio window above). it is a perfect upstate day. i cannot wait to go enjoy it.
but first...it is time for the ramblin to begin. the weekly special has been served- it is my sunday local artist ramble.

Today I will be highlighting the artist Fawn Potash. She resides and has her studio in Catskill, NY and teaches at SVA in NYC. Fawn has a very prominent history as an artist and educator in New York and is one of the most knowledable people I know about the area's art scene. The greatest thing is that she is more than willing to share all that she knows- she wants to see everyone around her succeed. what a rare and beatuiful thing- and a true representative of the word community. The truth is, Ican go on and on about Fawn and how wonderful she is. She has become a true mentor to me since I have moved here and has taught me many great things.

Now that I have had to chance to gloat over her...I would like to share her work. Most recently, she has been devoted to creating work that explores the relationship between the natural and the biological. By looking at the patterns inside the body and the patterns within nature she draws attention to the eeringly percise similarities within both shapes and forms. By using a combination of photography, drawing/painting, image transfers and encaustic she discovers this world in a divine and beautiful way.

By experimenting with these different materials, Fawn has really opened a door for photographers who are looking to add dimention and texture to their 2D images.

I have started palying with encaustics because of Fawn's encouragement. She is passionate about photography and commited to experimentation. That combination helps her make amazing art and assist others in doing so. The image above is also a combination of photography, encaustic and other mediums.

I also wanted to share an image from one of Fawn's earlier series "Library". These gelatin silver photographs are incredible. She is many more on her website that you should check out.

cheers to Fawn. Incredible artist and my sunday local artist of the week.


a drive-by photography collection

Today's events were most definitely made for an artist living and working in woodstock, new york.

One thing i could say without any doubt is that my place of work, CPW, is far from boring. Some of the most extraordinary things occur there. Like this afternoon for example. My co-worker Megan discovered that someone had left a mysterious box by our side door. there was no note, no one rang our doorbell, and it was not addressed to anyone. Believe it or not, this did not seem overly unusual. At first we all thought that maybe a local yocal stashed it there for temporary safe keeping. We had to open it- the suspense was killing all of us.

The mystery box was full, to the rim, of anonymous snapshots. we spent an hour going through it. we figured out it all belonged to a German woman named Ellen who moved to America in the 1990's. this is so damn mysterious.

we found some interesting pictures and I had to take them home to share on the blog. some were just Bizarre (notice capitol B) and we could not get enough. this was a gold mine.

it was curious to see this person's life and experiences piled in a box and left for us. i started to feel some sense of responsibility to figure "it" out.

was there actually anything to figure out?
there was a bigger question haunting me...was this person even alive? was leaving this box of photographs at CPW one of her last wishes on her death bed?

ok. so it is a bit meloncholy that i am assuming she is dead. hell, this could be a fantastic and intentional performance that we got ourselves in the middle of. this is true, of course, in my own head.
all i know at this point- she likes circuses (me too), likes grovery store deli labels (ok, i could like them) and obsesses over repetition (a great sign of creative madness). hmmm....i like her alot already.

what is going to happen next. will there ever be a conclusion. could we become great friends from this? drink strong liquor and talk about german things?

this is just a tiny taste of the box of gems. there is more to come as the mystery unravels (who needs law & order!)

stay tuned tomorrow to see more....


Vintage in Print

I think I need a new weekly addition to this blog. My Sunday Local Artist Ramble seems to be well liked (no one has said otherwise...yet) so I am now going to present a vintage document (poster, photograph, advertisement etc.) every Wednesday. Looking through a good archive is one of my favorite things to do...and there are some amazing digital ones out there that anyone can access.

This beautiful poster is from the late 1800's/early 1900's. It was found on the The Princeton Library website, which has a great archive of vintage circus posters. In the past 4 or 5 months I have been obsessed with reading novels about circuses and the lifestyle that surrounds it. I am almost done with Something Wicked this Way Comes by Ray Bradbury. Definitely a classic in terms of circus fiction. I have also read Katherine Dunn's Geek Love (fabulous book!)
I always appreciate more book recommendations in this or similar genre.


what does your workspace look like?

this is where i write my blog, edit some photographs and videos, email, surf the web for hours, pay my bills, get new music, write stuff and many other practical and unpractical things. i have been thinking about it lately- does a workspace inspire us or do we arrive to the space with the inspiration? one of my favorite things is to see where and how other people create. Though this is just my computer and desk, and not necessarily where i make art- it is somewhere i spend a lot of time (more than i would like to admit).

what does your work space look like?


My Sunday Local Artist Ramble

Yes kids...it is sunday and time for the rambin' to begin. i am still deathly sick (its never ending) and in bed but wanted to cheer myself up by sharing with you the work of local artist Lauren Tamraz-Judson. Lauren lives in Gardiner, NY and works as a substitute teacher in New Paltz. She recently earned her Masters degree in creative writing at SUNY Stonybrook. She is an incredibly talented individual who dabbles in just about anything and everything you can imagine. Her dedication to learning traditional craftwork (upholstery, embroidery, refinishing etc...) is contagious. She is always up to something new and I always love hearing about it (see awesome zebra chairs below that she recently re-upholstered). All her artistic ventures have encouraged me to do new crafty things as well.

She has also studied painting and is wonderful at capturing one of her loves, nature, through a contemporary viewpoint. See her blog for more!

Here is one of insightful her poems:

Winter year

I woke up a dozen years older
And when I opened my refrigerator,
Each annual was an egg—

But not in my dress
Not in my looks
Not in my heart
I play the teacher
And cry the teenager
I play the wife
And bleed the daughter
I play the adult
And hear the child

To you it was a cigarette ash
To me it was the forest fire.

photograph by lauren


not your grandma's crafts

check out this ad by Woolstudio that I found on the awesome website Extreme Craft. It has tons of great stuff. I thought this was worth sharing. Hysterical!