Silver & Gold


work in progress – 12″ x 16″ x 1″ – mixed media on wood

It’s been one of those weeks… and I feel like I’ve had one foot in the twilight zone.  There’s been such a surreal aura around me – weird synchronicities and strange happenings, but somehow I have managed to hold on to my calm center.

Perhaps all the turmoil has stirred up some creativity, because I’ve started a new painting that I hope to finish by the end of the weekend.  The story is evolving… two friends, a secret, who knows?  I guess I’ll have some idea by the time it’s all finished.  I’ll simply let instinct and intuition guide the way.

Here’s what’s I’ve been hearing in my head as I’ve been painting:

Make new friends but keep the old,

One is silver and the other is gold.


– from the Girl Scout song 


2/21 – here’s some progress on the painting, which I worked on yesterday.





I still need to do the background and finish up the detail work on the figures and the foreground, both of which are still rough.  The flowers in the foreground are collaged from paper napkins, a technique I first learned about from my friend Lenna Andrews and more recently was reminded of by Sharon Tomlinson’s  article in Cloth Paper Scissors. I’m going to need to paint them in, but I really love the fine layer they add!



I did a bit more today… I layered on some decorative papers for background texture, and then painted over them.  I also did some more detail work on the figures. Now it’s time to let it sit while I ponder the rest of the background.




Winter Blossoms


blossom – 9″ x 12″ x 1″ – acrylic – mixed media on wood panel
{from the Mantras & Meditations series – available for purchase in my etsy shop}


We all have contained within us seeds of beauty, strength, compassion, understanding, creativity, love…  seeds that must be nurtured in order to blossom.  The trick is to discover the right environment within which to grow.  It’s not necessarily a place, but more a state of mind.

What does it take to get it just right?  Well, for me it all starts with honesty and self-acceptance; knowing that if I stay true to who I am, that is more than enough.


The Jewel

There is this cave

In the air behind my body

That nobody is going to touch:

A cloister, a silence

Closing around a blossom of fire.

When I stand upright in the wind,

My bones turn to dark emeralds.

James Wright (1927 – 1980)

Late for the Sky


journal page – 10/18/08

October is the month of small migrations, when the air moves with restless, nervous energy.  The wind picks up, sending down a tumbling shower of ochre, carnelian, and diarylide yellow that collects on the ground like a richly-woven Persian carpet.  The sky, now broader through the thinning canopy, changes face hourly; misty in the morning, baby blue with streaks of clouds by midday, searing acid blue in the afternoon, pink-tinged charcoal near evening. Even on still days, some leaves (they know it’s time) let go and drift earthward on gentle currents.


Grackles in great noisy flocks populate the land beneath the trees, conversing loudly with one another as they pick berries and seeds from among the leaves.  Suddenly spooked by a movement,  they rise in a flapping cacophony of screeches into the trees and wait warily as I pass along the path, silhouetted against the sky like black-cloaked beadles.  Geese move overhead in v-formations and sparrow flocks dance through the air in brown waves before landing in a line along a wire.  Clinging and falling, noise and silence, movement and waiting, formation and breaking rank…  


The ancient maple behind the house creaks in the breeze as if to say… you want to stay, but it’s time to go.


I see my own soul in Nature, every day, every season.

How long have I been sleeping

How long have I been drifting alone through the night

How long have I been running for that morning flight

Through the whispered promises and the changing light

Of the bed where we both lie

Late for the sky


Jackson Browne


The 8″ x 10″ journal page above – which is part of a special Autumn book I’ve been working on – was done with oil paint-sticks and acrylics. The background contains some collage elements and the nature printing technique I recently learned in a workshop with my friend Lenna Andrews.

A Story of Abundance


journal page – 9/23/08




Where the pulp lifts its germ and the sludge of beauty sighs,

where the leaf pulls the branch to the breathy earth,

where the rind cracks and buds rust into petals,

where the clove steams and cinnamon bark spits out cinnamon air,

where roots sweat and the earth boils in curds of steaming mud,

where the stem draws up the seed and holds it like a lamb to the sun,

where flowers rest their animal heads,

there, full throated, limp with seed, lush and smiling is



To come upon her you must journey through the rains,

and sleep through a night of fish smells;

there must be a dead man in a hot room,

there must be a basket of figs and plums on the pier,

there must be no new ship in the harbor,

there must be the sound of flowers falling upon flowers,

there must be no children swimming in the salt pools.


Where the Flamboyant spills into the vulcan dust,

where the wild pig chews up the door frames,

where the leper kneads his bones,

where the sun is stuffed with guns,

where the water flows like honey from the tap,

where black flies swell in the gecko’s translucent belly,

where these are, there is

Vegetable-Life: The Sultana of the Vine,

The Goddess of the Harvest Gone Bad, The Spectrum Swallower.


In an ointment of wild saps, ripe fronds and mosses, tumid wheat,

and bareley, Abundance pours down over the head, heavy with pollen

and in the puce interrogation of the harvest

the intellect sprouts leaves.


Ned Gorman (1929 – )

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