Saturday, September 30, 2006

copper book class

This weekend I am taking a two-day copper book class. The instructor is Suzanne Cannon. Her website is Quietfire Design. She is an amazing calligrapher and if you read Sommerset Studio you may have seen some of her work. I have taken several bookmaking workshops with Suzanne and this one is quite unique. Today, we etched images into the covers by simply stamping with StazOn and soaking the copper in ferric chloride. Once that process was finished, I dipped my covers in a liver of sulfur solution. Watching the colours change and deciding just the right time to rinse it off was a fun exercise. Everyone had different results, all wonderful. I tried to scan them, but it didn't show all the detail, so I took a couple of pictures (hard while trying to get enough light, but not so much that I got glare and reflection off the copper), so here they are...not the best, but good enough to give you an idea. The face will be the front and the text will be tipped and used for the back.

Tomorrow we get to etch more copper and also make the signatures for the book. I am going to make mine into a book of Wesley's poems. I will post more once it is finished.

another fibre food update

After receiving Carla's email about the addition to my breakfast plate, I thought hmmm...there must be a post from the first plate she received. So I checked her blog and sure enough there it was... Take a look at her lemongrass!

artfest here I come!

I was so excited to finally receive my confirmation in the mail yesterday. I got all of my first choices; Lynne Perrella, Linda & Opie O'Brien and Thomas & Romona Ashman (my absolute first choice). Thank you to Teesha for putting together such a wonderful registration package, from the mini journal and amazing collages all the way to the cool Batman stamps. So much attention to details. Now it's time to start collecting treasures to use in my classes. I think I will have quite the list of tools to ask Santa for this year.

(thanks, Teesha, for letting me post one of your collages from the Artfest package)

fibre food update

Wow...Carla has done an incredible job with her addition to my breakfast plate. Check out the pics here.

Thursday, September 28, 2006

...and I think it's gonna be a long, long time...

...until I have another week like this past one! Have I mentioned what an important part music plays in my life? Next to my sense of smell, music brings back the most powerful memories for me. I can remember sitting in my room as a child listening to my first Beatles 45 (dating myself). Supertramp's Crime of the Century always reminds me of when Stephen and I first started dating. Then there's the time I actually had a fever of 103 while listening to Foreigner's "Hot Blooded".

While I haven't had much time to make art lately, I have had a chance to experience a the form of live music that is. Since last Thursday, I have had the privilege of seeing Huey Lewis and the News, Paul Simon and Elton John!

I had only planned on seeing Elton (bought tickets for his show the moment they went on sale!)...but as luck would have it, I was able to enjoy all three of these fabulous artists and their bands. A Huey ticket became available via my good friend Karen (who was already going) and she asked if I wanted to purchase it. Hmmm...second row in a new casino theatre (intimate venue)? How could I resist. THEN...this Wednesday at work, Karen called me late in the afternoon and asked if I was busy that night. I said I didn't have any plans so she invited me to see Paul Simon, as she had just been gifted with two tickets. Yup, I'm in! While at the show, Linda, the same wonderful person who gave Karen tickets to PS, gifted me two tickets to Elton John (row 21 on the floor, no less) for the next night (last night)! Of course Karen was getting one of the tickets and seeing as I already had tickets, we invited our friend Dave to join us. I had previously checked with Stephen, and he didn't mind me taking a floor seat with Karen while he sat in our seats with Dave. It worked out really well, as Stephen doesn't care much for dancing and was able to sit back (in his front row balcony seat) while Karen and I danced our butts off (near, but out of range of, the really, really drunk woman who was very entertaining to watch)!

All of the shows were amazing, but Elton was my absolute fav! He played for almost three hours straight (no pun intended)!

[sorry, couldn't warped sense of humour coming through]

His piano solos in "Benny and the Jets" and "Rocket Man" were to die for! I just love, love, LOVE his music.

So, while I haven't been creating art, my spirit has been filled by these amazing musicians.

Do you have a particular song or album that brings back special memories? Do share.

fibre food update

Laurie has posted a picture of the wonderful fudge cake she added to Suanne's dessert plate. Click here to take a look.

Saturday, September 23, 2006

hair cuts and a chance encounter

Most people make an appointment and a haircut takes a couple hours out of their day, end of story, right?

For our family it isn't a "haircut" but a "haircut weekend"...what that entails is a trip over to Vancouver Island, Nanaimo to be exact. Why Nanaimo you ask? Well, that is where we are from...where I was born. Stephen was born on the mainland, but has lived all across, I'm an island girl. Since we moved 18 years ago next month, we have always gone back for our haircuts.

While on the ferry, I happened to notice a woman facing me sitting at the next table. She pulled out a journal and started to sketch. We were busy playing cards, but every once in a while I would look up, wondering what she was drawing. I noticed that as she drew she seemed to be looking our way and directly at us at times. She was sitting with a man who also had a small journal out and was using some watercolour paints. Two boys happened by and the man handed one of the boys his paint brush and invited him to add to his journal. That reminded me of something Teesha (Moore) had mentioned one evening at ArtFiberFest. I asked her if they received a lot of attention when they were out at , say, a coffee shop journalling. She said that if someone asked what they were doing, there have been times that her hubby Tracy would invite them to draw in his journal. It made me smile.

My curiosity was really getting the better of me and so I walked over and asked if I could see what she was drawing. It was a sketch of everything that was right there in front of her...including us. It was lovely. I asked her if she would mind if I took a picture of her sketch. She obliged me. I thought it would be great if I could share it with you, so I asked and she said, "Yes, and what is the name of your blog?" I offered to write it on a scrap of paper, but she said she would write it in her journal so she wouldn't lose it. I asked her name. It is Qi (pronounced "chee").

Here it is. Wes and I are on the left and Stephen is on the far right.

And here's Qi.

Thank you for sharing a bit of your art with me, Qi. Good luck with your sculpting. It was a pleasure to meet you!

...and now for something completely different...

Our hair stylist, Bryan is our friend and has been for over 20 years. Wow...I can't believe it has been that long! He is an absolute nut and we love him to bits. Here's a pic...he is such a ham! "Well, if you're gonna take my picture [for your blog], wait 'til I take my shirt off." Strike the pose, baby.

Haircuts get us to the island every seven weeks where we try, and usually succeed, in seeing our families. Leaves little time for old friends whom we see all too infrequently, but are always in our thoughts. This particular trip was a quick one...caught the ferry over last night, got our hair cut (Bryan was kind enough to change our appointment from today to last night due to Wes's work schedule), spent the night at my Mom's and caught an early ferry back this morning to get Wes to work early this afternoon.

An eventful 24 hours.

Sunday, September 17, 2006

high tea

For anyone who has experienced high tea, isn't it just so royal? Something about all those petite sandwiches and a steeping cup of tea...especially on a rainy afternoon like the one we had today.

My nana (grandmother) is in town from Saskatoon, Saskatchewan and we (that meaning the whole family, if possible) always spend a day together when she is in town. We went to
The Secret Garden, located in the Kerrisdale area of Vancouver, for our high tea. I would highly recommend it. We had a lovely day.

Monday, September 11, 2006

progressive dinner swap update

wow...I was just at Lori's blog and I see she has been adding to Carla's TV dinner. Check out her amazing fried chicken! Awesome!

Sunday, September 10, 2006

the salad course, part ii

Wow...did I get on a roll this evening. I finished my portion of the salad plate. Added were cherry tomatoes, butter lettuce, carrots and beet slices. I had so much fun putting them all together. Can't wait for the bento box!!

the salad course to make a little art today.

It is my turn to add to Lori's salad plate. The first picture is how it arrived from Suanne. She added romaine and boston lettuces along with a broccoli stem and hard boiled egg. It was such a thrill to open up the box and see all of her wonderful work. Next are my felted cherry tomatoes that will join her wonderful creations. I have a couple other items started, but will keep them a secret for the time being. I will take another picture of how it will look as it heads off to Laurie's for stop #3.

Saturday, September 09, 2006

vegas...all you need is 'love' and a couple lucky pennies!

(Nothing art-related, just some highlights from our trip...if you are interested. Warning: I do tend to babble)

Man, did that time go fast! Stephen and I got back from Vegas last night after four wonderful nights in Sin City. We stayed at New York New York. As a treat, we upgraded our room to one with a jacuzzi tub right in the room...sweet.
It isn't a trip to Vegas without indulging in a tasty beverage from Fat Tuesday! Gotta love that "extra shot" for getting a little Vegas buzz goin'!

One of the highlights of the trip was seeing the new Cirque show Love, which is performed to remixed Beatles music. The only Cirque show where the music isn't performed live. It was absolutely wonderful!

The music and sound was amazing and the performances were very different from the other Cirque shows (very little make up, toned down costumes). The acrobatics had a very urban feel. In-line skaters in half-pipes, break dancers, etc. In the theatre, you feel as if you are part of the show, and everyone actually is at one point (won't spoil it). It was a very intimate setting. Very unique, but still very Cirque.

After six trips to Vegas, we finally made our way down to the Stratosphere. What an incredible view from up top! We hung out for a couple hours, taking in the view and watching the people brave enough (or maybe crazy enough) to go on the rides 109 stories in the air! The X Scream is one ride I don't think I could ever manage to convince myself to go on. A teeter totter style ramp that tips and slides you down off the side of the building and leaves you hanging there only to tip you back and repeat the process. Eek!

While we were there, we also got to enjoy a lightning storm off in the distance. Quite the show. Because of the lightning, they had to shut down the rides and the outer observation deck, so we watched from inside.

We didn't have too much luck on the gambling front until our last full day, Thursday (the day we saw Love). Up until that point, we would win enough to give us some play time, but by the end, we would give it all back. I did have a bit of luck at craps, but ended up losing it on roulette. The turning point seemed to be when Stephen found a 2 cent cash voucher next to a slot machine in the Mirage and as we just happened to be right beside a redemption machine, he cashed it in and said, "These could be our lucky pennies." Turned out they were! We has a great run of luck at the slot machines after that! Stephen started things off by turning $20 into $248 playing Lobstermania! I love the B52's Rock Lobster song in the background. A little after that, I turned $20 into $148 playing on a Price is Right slot machine (one of my favorites..."Come on down!").

Late in the evening, back at NYNY, Stephen played Deal or No Deal slots and got to the Cash Box Bonus (just like the game on TV) and ended up picking the highest value case (10,000)! ...pennies that is! Another $100...not bad for us small $$ gamblers.

Seemed every machine we touched gave us a little something back. This continued on through yesterday. We decided to check out our the points on our players card and were surprised to find out that we had earned enough that we were comp'ed two nights of our upgrade (about $80 value) plus we were given a money voucher for $14. We took that money and dropped it into a Risque Business slot machine (another one of my favs...gotta love that stripper bonus). Well, by the time we cashed out on that machine we were up $100+ again.
So much more fun when you win a little!
Our flight home was good (even after getting stuck out on the runway for an additional 20 mins, due to shifting winds). Alaska Airlines is one of our favs.

Wes managed just fine on his own for the first time. Of course, mom called home every day to make sure he was doing alright. It was great to get away, but feels good to be back home. Must go catch up on everyone's blogs and read all the emails that have been flying around regarding Artfest!

Sunday, September 03, 2006

vegas bound!

Well, we are off to Vegas for a few nights, so I will catch up with everyone when I get back! Have a terrific week and I will share some of our exploits (or not...cuz what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas) when we return. :u)

Shari, I will be thinking of you as I take the first sip of my mudslide from Fat Tuesday!

jeremy fisher

Here are pics of Jeremy's CDs. I tried to post them yesterday but blogger wasn't cooperating (I know I have to start using Flickr, Heather...I will contact you soon for a tutorial) :u)

Saturday, September 02, 2006

girl's night out with great big sea

My friend Karen (who also works at my company) and I have had a tradition over the summers of taking advantage of our company's "summer hours". Summer hours means you put in extra hours during the week and then (work permitting) you can leave as early as 1:00pm on the Friday. We would go into downtown Vancouver, wander, shop, stop at a watering hole for a thirst-quenching beverage and perhaps a bite to eat.

Unfortunately, over the last couple of summers, our Friday adventures have become very limited, due to work and life in general.

Yesterday, we had our first "Friday Outing" of the year...and it was a good one!

We started with a pedicure, followed by a fabulous Indian dinner. Next it was off to Malkin Bowl, an outdoor amphitheatre inside Stanley Park. Great Big Sea was the headline band. They are a group out of Newfoundland (a province on the east coast of Canada, for my international friends). They play a lot of traditional Newfoundland folk songs, which are heavily influenced by the celtic history of the area. Their concerts are more like traditional newfie kitchen parties...lots of singing along and dancing...a really fun time. Their latest album, 'The Hard & The Easy' is all traditional newfie songs. Check them out and have a listen.

- cover art for The Hard & The Easy

The bonus of the evening was the opening act. His name is Jeremy Fisher, from Vancouver. He was on stage when we arrived and we instantly were drawn in by his wonderful stage presence. He was alone on stage with his guitar and harmonica. His voice sounds a lot like Paul Simon with a splash of Bob Dylan. Add the Arlo Guthrie-style chatting with the audience and great folky-type songs and we were hooked. After his set, we headed up to the merchandise table and each picked up one of his CDs (Back Porch Spirituals and Let It Shine). Jeremy was there and we got him to autograph our copies.

It was a wonderful night out with a terrific friend!