Park Ave Fest Update {repost}

Yes, I am still alive, and, well...yes, I have just been wrapped up with things other then renovating the house.  But, in case you were checking in, I am re-posting an update that I just put up on my art blog.  Until the end of the summer and art festival season, we will be focusing all of our efforts on paintings, frames and all things related to festivals.  Thanks for checking up on us  :)

Well, it is safe to say that we have now tested our tent against severe storms.  They rolled through mid afternoon on Sunday of the Park Ave Fest.  Although the weather caused the show to end a little early, it was a welcome break in the heat for a bit. 

The festival was pretty cool.  It had a very eclectic mix of artists, crafters, and food vendors.  There were also a lot of very nice vendors willing to share tips with us on setting up and displaying our paintings.  We spent some time building pvc and dropcloth display panels to house the artwork.  They did the trick at the festival, but Eric and I both agreed that it is time to upgrade to a more professional looking set up. 

You can see the panels that we built out of PVC pipe, green plastic fencing and canvas drop clothes.  This was taken on the morning of day 2.  The painting on the right is my demo piece.  The view is from the top of the old Stutson St. Bridge looking down into the marina on the Genessee River and Lake Ontario.
demo painting in progress - still un-named, 36x36, oil on canvas
I am happy to report that we won Best in Show for the Painting category.  The rain forced us to pack it up a little early, but that was ok since we were headed back home that night.   In case you are interested, the demo painting is still available.  Send me a message for more info

***Update - the demo has SOLD


Manayunk Art Festival Recap

[repost from www.teresahaag.blogspot.com]

At the last minute, I was offered a table in the Emerging Artist Tent at the Manayunk Arts Festival.  I had never done a festival before...so I got some prints made and put together some plain black float frames for my originals.  We scrambled with some display ideas and packed up the car to see how things would go. 

This is the first year that they had an Emerging Artist Tent.  It was such a great idea.  My tent mates were so great and came from all different backgrounds - painters, digital artists, jewelry makers, pastel artists, and print makers.  Some had just graduated, and some had grand kids. 

I snuck out of the tent before the festival was even open
 and snapped this street shot...the streets were already packed.

Emerging Artist Tent
Table Setup
I did a live demo painting during my two days at the festival.  It was pretty busy so I was in and out of working on it.  It's of the Manayunk Bridge.  A local couple has called dibs on it.  I should be finished up this week. 
Some of my tent mates.
The festival organizers stopped by the booth at the end of the first day with a ribbon for me.
 I won the Best Emerging Artist award. 
The festival was an amazing experience.  People were streaming through all day stopping by to talk about my art and tell stories about places that my art reminded them of.  I met a woman who is also from upstate NY, and although I didn't have any work that depicted that region, she purchased a one of my 8x10 original paintings of Paris. 

I sold 7 originals, including my Shoreline Motel.  I am slightly sad to see the Shorline go, but I know that it is going to a good home.  I also sold some art prints.  Based on the crowds feedback, next year, I'll have more original paintings of local artwork available. 

Up next...I was accepted into the Corn Hill Art Festival in Rochester, NY July 7-8.  So, I've got to get back to work!


Gallery Update

Last month was the Phoenix Village Art Center's members show.  There were about 40 artists who submitted work.  It was a great show. 

I submitted 2 paintings...

It was a juried show and the awards night was this week.  I am so excited to share that "Powell Street" won Best In Show!
Here is the really amazing part...the winner of Best in Show gets a solo exhibition in 2013.  I am still in shock as I didn't even consider this a possibility.  So...lots of work to do to get ready.  40 pieces is the goal. 


Displaying Kids Art

Our poor fridge is running out of space.  I have been stock piling Owen's little creations for some time now and have been trying to come up with some creative ways to display/save his hard work.  I had some extra Ikea Ribba frames lying around and picked out a few random finger paintings and sticker pictures that were hanging on (for dear life) to the refrigerator

above - finger painting by Owen
left - a card made by cousin Sydney
right - sticker picture made by Owen and his babysitter Faith

here you can see it with and without the pictures -
the color really makes a big difference
So, this idea is nothing earth shattering - but I have to say that it really brightens up that little nook in the kitchen.  We have a small wall in the bathroom that is crying for some attention - I think I'll put a couple of these up there as well. 

Below are some additional ideas that I've stumbled acrossed and will definitly be incorporating at some point in our little home. 

1.  Scan in the artwork and crop it down into squares.  Print.  Tada!  http://jengrantmorris.blogspot.ca/2008/08/artwork-in-boys-room.html
2.  Trim on the wall with clips screwed on make for an easy change up in the display.   http://www.marthastewart.com/275481/decorating-kids-spaces#/224231
3.  Graham and Brown Wall Paper -  ooooooohhhhh so many possibilities!
4.  This takes my little project and blows it out of the water!
5.  I actually have this wire hanging system from Ikea already.  It's what I originally tried to use in my bay window to hang curtains.  I recently installed the wire in my studio to hang current artwork. 


The Boys

I caught Owen by surprise while he was snuggling with his little bears.

I just had to share this moment.  After his nap yesterday, Owen came downstairs and cuddled up on the couch with his little stuffed bears that he calls "the boys" - which I think he picked up from me since that is how I often refer to him and Ryan.  These are the moments that I feel especially blessed to be at home with them.


Kitchen Island Painted


During Install

For three months now, our island has sat in the kitchen primed and patiently awaiting a coat of paint.  I was so stumped on what color I wanted to go with.  The kitchen is quite neutral - slate, tan, white and black.  There was no color inspiration to find in the current color pallette.  I recently did a kitchen update for my mother in law - we painted a nook in the kitchen a bold red (Morocco Red - Behr). 
trying out different shades of red in the kitchen nook at my mother in law's house

we went with Moroccan Red - Behr

Another view

I kinda fell in love with this red and was really really  hoping to find a place to put it in our home.   Red scares me, so the thought of doing an entire room was a bit overwhelming.  I picked up a quart of the paint on a trip to Home Depot and set it aside until I found the perfect surface to paint it on.   On a whim, I decided to try it out on the cabinet in the peninsula and realized it was perfect.  It totally transformed the feel of the kitchen from a bit chilly to warm and full of personality. 

This was definitly a bold choice - but I think it really fits perfectly.  The only thing we have left is to get the seating figured out.  I am thinking I want 2 saddle seat stools, 1 high back stool for Owen, and a hook on high chair for Ryan for now.   

More Groutable Vinyl Tile

I got a message from a friend of the blog last night.  He saw our previous post - Groutable Vinyl Tile and recently installed some in his kitchen. 

Here is the in progress pic...
Groutable Vinyl Tile being laid over old vinyl flooring.
And here is the pre grout after pic...
pre grout - groutable vinyl tile
Trafficmaster/Allure style is called "New Concrete"
This is the same brand that I used for our kitchen...just a different style. Nice work friend :)  I would love to see it after the grout.  

As for our kitchen...I finally painted the penninsula cabinet!  So excited to show you some pics.  I'll give you a clue - it's not white.  Guesses???


Art Show

Members Art Show
Last night was the members art show down at the Phoenix Village Art Center. The show was packed and the weather cooperated.  I have two paintings in the show for the month of May.  Thanks to our friends that stopped out for the opening...it was really great to see you!  If you are in the area, please stop in and check it out...there is some really great art!
View of the Phoenix Village Art Center from Bridge St.


Hollow Core Door Makeover...round 2

Our Bathroom Door desperately needed updating...
as you can see in the photo above that Owen helped with.  :)

Hollow core door makeover round 2!  This one was a little bit trickier, as there was a large hole in the door behind the strategically hung mirror. 

I followed all of the same steps as outlined in my previous post...Hollow Core Door Makeover.  To cover the big hole in the door, I cut a piece of luan (1/8 inch thick plywood) and wood glued it to the door.  I then trimmed around it. 

This is the square that covers the hole.  Because of the trim, you can't even tell that there is a board glued down over the hole.  The luan has the same texture as the hollow core door (I think that the door is actually made of the same material).  Once it is painted, the grain blends right into the door.  I did run painter's caulk around the outside of the square prior to painting to make sure there were no visible seams. 

I primed once with Kilz, and put three coats of semi gloss (Popcorn, Martha Stewart - color matched to Behr). 

I am going to tackle the boy's rooms next.  I am thinking of replacing their hollow core doors with dutch doors - so I have been on the lookout for wood doors that I can cut down.  I think a trip to the Habitat for Humanity store, ReStore, is in my near future!



our little shop's grand opening

"Glimpse of Paris"
I am so excited about a new adventure I am taking on...opening up an Etsy shop to sell my art.  This, in part, is why there hasn't been a lot of activity on the house lately.  Although I really love the challenges that designing and renovating the house brings, there is something about paint on canvas that fills me up and makes me happy.  So, now I'll be doing both. :) 

The name of the shop is BitsyBitsy - you can thank Owen for the name as it is is favorite song.  "BitsyBitsy spider went up the water spount..."   I'll be selling mainly prints of my original art.  I am not sure if I'll also be posting my original paintings in the shop as well.  I'll see how things go.  Additionally, I'll be selling original custom art maps like this one below and the one from previous post...

"People that Love Me Map"
8x10 Acrylic on Canvas

Stop on by our Etsy shop to check out more art.   Also,come like our new facebook page.


Gearing Up for our Grand Opening

Happy day after tax day everyone.  We were those people this year. You know, those people at the post office at 11:45pm hoping to get the returns in the mail on time, and yes, we made the deadline.  :)
Just a few of the new paintings I created for my series
"Little Zoo" and "People That Love Me Maps".
We are just a few days away from our grand opening of our Etsy shop, BitsyBitsy.  As you can see from the photo, I have been busy working on a new series for the shop.  We just finalized a deal with a print shop, and I am expecting my mailing supplies to arrive today or tomorrow.  

As for the house, I just picked the paint color for the peninsula cabinet.  It's pretty bold - but no sneak peeks.  I'll do a final reveal after its complete.

I am still working on our hollow core doors - one at a time.  It is tedious work, but makes such a dramatic difference.  I have been thinking for awhile about dutch doors for the kids rooms.  Does anyone have any ideas for DIY dutch doors?  Would love some guidance on this one!


Family Map

Our Family Map
Acrylic on Canvas
 Here is a piece that I just finished. It has our house, as well as all of the grandparents houses.  This one is going up in Ryan's room. 

I have some exciting news to share.  On April 20th, I will be opening up an Etsy shop named Bitsy Bitsy.  I'll be filling it with paintings and prints designed for kids.  This painting will be featured as a new custom product that will be called "People That Love Me Maps".  Over the next couple of weeks, I'll be sharing more info with you, but in the mean time, please check out the new facebook page that I set up by clicking here.


House Portraits for Guest Room

I have been thinking a lot about artwork for the house lately, and came up with a fun idea for our guest room.  There are two large blank walls that need to be filled with art.  I am going to do fun little ink and watercolor sketches of our family and friend's houses to fill the space with.  I'll frame them and fill the guest room with these bright and color filled little artworks.  Hopefully, everyone will feel a little piece of their home when they come to stay with us. 

Our Old Abode House Portrait
Watercolor and Ink on Paper

N&G's House
Watercolor and Ink on Paper

P&C's House
Watercolor and Ink on Paper


Ryan's Sunshine Themed Birthday

As I mentioned in the last post, Ryan just had his first birthday and we decided to celebrate with a Sunshine themed party.  I decided to go more in the direction of vintage suns vs. cartoony suns.  As you will see below, I went a little crazy with bunting and found all sorts of different ways to incorporate it into the festivities. 

Here are the invitations.  They are self enclosed to make things easy.  I used a Martha Stewart scoring board to create the 6x6 envelopes from 12x12 scrapbook card stock paper.  Because of the square size, they did cost extra to mail.  I used a clear stamp with metallic gold ink on the outside and inside of the envelope to make the vintage suns.  

envelope creating using 12x12" paper purchased at Michael's

I had the stamp and ink already in my inventory.

The inside paper is also 12x12 scrapbook paper that I found at Michael's.  I created the messaging in MS Word and printed it on 6x6" pieces of paper that I cut down using my rotary cutting board.  I used a Krylon Silver Leafing pen to color in Ryan's name.  I purchased that bad boy for our wedding invitations back in 2007 :).  It's still going strong. 
Up next...decorations.  I love bunting, as you probably have noticed in previous posts.  It makes me feel so happy when it is around.  So, I went to my handy, dandy stock of scrapbook supplies and pulled all the 12x12 paper that made me think SUN.  I got out my sweet rotary cutting board...also Martha.  Here is what I created.

For those of you interested in how to make these little guys...it was really easy, but slightly time consuming and since they are paper, not very durable for more then a few uses.  I didn't take pictures of the process, so you'll have to close your eyes [well, don't really close your eyes] and use your imagination. 

  • Take the 12x12 sheets of paper and use your rotary trimmer to cut them into 3" wide strips. 
  • Next, fold the strips in half lengthwise with the pretty side of the paper in the outside. 
  • Then, take the folded strips and place them back on the rotary trimmer.  You are going to make two cuts to turn your folded rectangle into a triangle.  Do this by placing one of the folded corners along the cutting edge and the bottom unfolded corner 1.5 inches past the cutting edge.  This will give you a diagonal cut that ends at the halfway point along the bottom unfolded edge.  Did I lose you?  It may take a couple of trys to get it just right...but once you figure it out, its a breeze. 
  • Ok, next, flip it over and do it again.  And you will have your triangle shape that unfolds into a diamond. 
  • Now, unfold a bunch of the triangles and run some glue along the fold.  I found that by doing this in batches saved a lot of time. 
  • Get your string out and place the fold with glue over the string. Press it together and let it set for about 10 seconds before moving on to the next.  Leave about a 1/4 inch between the triangles. 
I made about 200 feet of bunting and still had more of the triangles left over.  Here is where they ended up.

Bunting Wreath
I had a craft ring left over from Christmas that never got used.  I glued the triangles onto the craft wreath and hung it from the door with ribbon.  We still have it up. 

I went around the wreath twice with the triangles. 

Once you get through all the cuts, you will be left with a ton of little scrap triangles.  I couldn't let them go to waste, so this is what I came up with.
I made about 25 of these with the intention to put little photos of Ryan in the center and hang up all around.  I got them hung, but ran out of time before I got the photos glued on.

This Sun was created by gluing the triangles onto a paper plate.  I made a few of these to hang up on the outside of the windows that faced the back patio where we had the party.

We served hot dogs, hamburgers, and grilled chicken along with potato salad, SUN chips, and a veggie platter with dips and hummus served in yellow sun shaped serving dishes that were bought for $2.50 at Target (woohoo).  [I would love to show you a photo, but I forgot to snap one]. 

Instead of a cake, our awesome baker friend Tina, made the most awesome cupcakes.  She needs to open a bakery in town.

The weather was amazing.  We had 70 degrees and sunny in mid March in the Northeast.  Perfect weather for a sunshine party. 

The play list for the party was...

It was such a happy party perfect for such a happy little boy.