Sunday, April 28, 2013

I'm Feeling Grateful

For the many friends and family who came to the reception at Collector gallery...
(my paintings are still up for another week)

 ( these three below stole the show!)

 ...For my terrific illustrators' group, who bring desserts like this! 
(and much needed illustrative advice, of course)
 and for my wonderful writer's group, who also make amazing desserts! 
(and excellent critiques, too)

... for this glorious springtime... 
all of our Cecile Bruner roses decided to bloom at once this year.

...and for time to work on the story of this incredible woman...
Sonia Delaunay
Here's a first color sketch for her story, playing with her style... and mine.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Where are the Women?

I guess I feel like ranting today, so consider yourselves warned, dear readers.

I was just looking around on Pinterest last night, and found a few links to parenting blogs, one recommended '13 great books for kids about artists',. Well, that seems great, until upon looking further I saw that only ONE was about a female artist. Only one.
Where are the books for kids about WOMEN artists?

There are plenty of women artists out there. The ratio of female to male students at art schools has always been disproportionately female. Yet galleries and museums still show a majority of art made by men.
 Unless your name is Frida or Georgia, you don't exist in the world of children's books. Even though the majority of editors at publishing houses are women.

 I am not saying that there are too many books about these two women artists above, btw. I think these books are all particularly beautiful and well-written. (The last one, Through Georgia's Eyes, was written by my friend Rachel Rodriguez!)

I'm just saying that I think there are plenty of women artists who deserve their own biographies, instead of continuing to be categorized as 'women' artists, and given only a page or two in a book shared with others.

P.S. The reception at Collector gallery was great fun on Friday night. Thanks to all my friends and family who came to join me! My work will be up until the end of April.

Monday, April 8, 2013

Reception at Collector this Friday

 It's all about birds and bugs and springtime...

 Hope to see some of you this Friday night, 6-8 pm !
at Collector
2950 College Avenue 

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Pysanky Time

OK, so this is a little late, but here goes.
 I like to use blown eggs so I can keep them. ( I blow them out before dyeing, and cover the hole up with a blob of wax before dropping into the dye. Traditional eggs are blown after dyeing, it is easier to dye an unblown egg, as it's heavier and will sink into the dye, but klutzy me is too good at dropping things to even consider this method.)
Here are my dyes above. I get them at The Caning Shop in Berkeley. They have kitskas, below, and beeswax blocks, as well. All your pysanky needs. Some day I'll splurge on an electric kitska, which keeps the wax hot, to paint it on more quickly. Seems a bit like cheating, though. I love the slow process, and the wonderful smell of the beeswax. (That blackish rectangle next to the candle below is beeswax.) How it works: you heat up the metal kitska in the candle, scoop up a bit of melting wax into the hot little funnel, and draw on the egg with it, the wax comes out the tip of the kitska in a line.

 Pysanky is like batik, if you understand that concept. You draw on the egg (or fabric, with batik) with dye, using the kitska. Then, put the egg in dye. The dye doesn't go wherever you've painted the wax. This is after dying, below.
Now, you can put more wax on, or melt all the wax off with the candle, as I've done here below.
For the pink egg below; first I drew my design on a brown egg with wax, then put the egg in pink dye, next I covered up the roses I wanted to stay pink, and put the egg into orange dye.
Lastly, I melted all the wax off.

Really fancy eggs take a very long time, as they are dipped in many colors. Traditional Ukrainian eggs start with white eggs, dipped first in yellow , then orange, red, green, purple, and ending with black.
Here are some links for more info:

It's so much fun, you should give it a try!