Monday, June 28, 2010


Prague Impressions, a series of photographs by Canadian artist Paul Pacey. See more here. Nice.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Beware of "Can there be any doubt that. . ."

It's always a gamble when you start a sentence with that phrase. Still and all, this guy asks (and takes a stab at answering) a pretty interesting question:
     Are certain kinds of modern art too complex for anybody to understand?

Chain, chain, chain

New encaustics. Chain Series.

The Queen of Soul's Chain, Chain, Chain

Friday, June 25, 2010

Fear NOT

Art & Fear: Observations On the Perils (and Rewards) of Artmaking, by David Bayles and Ted Orland (2001).


And then re-read at one year intervals.
LINK: Katherine Tyrrell's 10 Tips for How to Sketch People. Click on her image below to go to her page. Good stuff! Excellent advice!

Thursday, June 24, 2010


Shift Happens

PIC: The Periodic Breakfast Table, by Catharine Weese. Click on the pic below to see a full sized version. (Originally published in Gastronomica. Spring 2009. Vol. 9, Iss. 2; p. 122)

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

The Letter

This is neat.

(Click anywhere in the image box on the right to activate the revolving alphabet. Click on any individual letter and "play it" with your mouse.)

Monday, June 21, 2010

Jaguar Iguana

Exquisite Mayan bowl lid handle from 500 AD.

Item in the exhibit entitled Fiery Pool: The Maya and the Mythic Sea, currently at the Peabody Essex Museum in Salem MA.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Maya Papa

Attended a day-long seminar yesterday, entitled The Ancient Maya World, given by George Stuart, who's gotta be the longest-lived American Mayanist around.

Stuart spent his career working for National Geographic, and so had the freedom of both a fat expense account ("So then we hired this helicopter from the Guatemalan air force, . . . ") PLUS the quasi-official entré and gravitas offered by dropping the name itself, National Geographic. According to his account, he and his sidekicks spent a lifetime careening around Mesoamerica, having adventure after adventure. And making some historic finds. (Could this chap be the real-life inspiration for Indiana Jones? He certainly had some hair-raising escapades. According to him.)

Although it was more a random collection of entertaining yarn-spinning, rather than an organized, coherent series of academic lectures, the day still was interesting. Above are some faces in the crowd.
FAMSI / Foundation for the Advancement of Mesoamerican Studies
Cracking the Maya Code, online video from PBS
✱  Maya Vase Data Base - Justin Kerr's "rollout" pix: wonderful resource!
Below, drawing of a tomb at Copán, by Stuart, made in 1989:

Friday, June 18, 2010

Wilbur Scoville, American Hero

Sombreros off to Wilbur Lincoln Scoville, the creator of the Scoville Chile Heat Chart, shown here.

(Click chart to enlarge.)

I might dig out those serranos and throw them away. Just so I don't get them mixed up with the jalapeños. Yikes.

Summer Travelers

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

La tragedia romano, di nuovo

Disovered: "heirloom" (read $$$) Roma tomato that tastes just as bland as the factory-made ones.

Grazie, Tutto Alimentari.

Congrats to the Youngsters


May it translate up.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Adiós, mi Salvaje Oeste

Parts of two sketch pages from the road trip sketchbook. The first is a very scary, very ancient, very grizzled and tough old Ranch Lady, with frizzy peach-tinted hair and dripping with silver and turquoise jewelry, who (whom?) I spotted in a cafe. (As you can see, she also spotted me spotting her.) The second is a view from the veranda dining area of The Cliff House, Manitou Springs CO

Bonus Link: Liz+Borromini. Excellent sketches!

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Root Beer Float

A traditional yet most functional necessity on the way home: one Root Beer Float from Queen City Creamery, downtown Cumberland.

("Mom, what is that?" "It's a root beer float, honey. It's your grandfather's favorite.")

Yet it's part and parcel of the celebratory return to one's own state, coming in from the wilds of WV. See that little state there? By god I own it! It's mine.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

This man is now smiling

This man with the feathers in his hair is now smiling. Congrats to the Blackhawks. They worked at it and gnawed at it and stuck to it for sixteen more games.


Parade.  Want.

"You can win it, but you can't keep it, because it belongs to all of us."

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Well, now that you ask . . .

"Why, YES! We DO have a room available for tonight! Tell me, what brings you to Topeka today?"
✱ Well, now that you ask, I just left Leavenworth. You know, it's just up the road a piece? And I need a place to hole up for the night.
✱ Well, I live here in Topeka and have decided to stay one night in every inn and hotel in town. You're next!
✱ My husband just threw me and my six kids (all under ten years old) out of the house. Your inn is the closest. Do you have cribs?
✱ I am here for the State Fair! Brought Big Frannie, my hog. Raised her from a piglet myself. Do you have straw?
✱ I am a tornado-chaser and a Big One is headed your way. Do you have a cellar?
✱ I am looking for Dorothy and Toto. Do you know them?

This is the valley of the West Fork of the Upper San Juan River, alone Route 160. My pic was taken looking down the valley, southwards towards Pagosa Springs, with the upper road to Wolf Creek Pass behind me. Lovely!

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Workshop Part 2

Back at the encaustics worktable, this time for only two days, again under the tutelage of Ellen Koment.

Slideshow of all the 8 pieces I did:
Almost all are 12"x12".

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Soy la Reina de las Tortillas

This pic was taken during my Taco Class this morning at Santa Fe School of Cooking. We began by making all our own tortillas, from scratch. Which isn't that difficult, really.

Naturally I came away with a couple of cookbooks AND my very own tortilla press.

Below is our teacher, Lois Ellen Frank, saying a few words at the end of our Taco Class. She was great. An excellent teacher, as you can see.

(First movie with the new micro-mini camera. Easy! Like it!)

Recipe: anglo Huevos Rancheros!

Restaurants recommended by Chef Lois Ellen Frank here in Santa Fe:
. Coyote Cafe
. Geronimo
. Resturant Martín (a new one!)
. Santacafé
. Los Potrillos
☛ I would add:
. Tesuque Village Market (real wood fired oven pizza begins at 4pm)
. Mucho Gusto (simple Mexican fare; excellent salsa verde)
. Tia Sophia (downtown breakfast hangout)

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Aldea Purdy

Visited a delightful sheep farm near El Guique NM yesterday, which I am calling Aldea Purdy, after the gracious lady who presides over it. We (my cousin, who went to school with her, and I) enjoyed a tour of her pastures and her herds. Her property extends down to the center of the Rio Grande River, which runs by her farm. Then we had a fascinating introduction to the techniques and the machinery for washing, carding, spinning, and dying wool yarn. All of which she does, on a small scale, right on the premises, in the designated buildings in the complex. All that wonderfulness PLUS a genuine historic adobe home to relax in over a long and chatty lunch. It was just great and a glimpse of real NM that I was very lucky to get.

Above is a loose and inaccurate composite of her backyard taken from the rear terrace, overlooking the sheep pastures on the left (note the immense cottonwoods, one of which sports a tree house), and her huge flower garden on the right. Below is a view of the living room. I enjoyed it absolutely and thoroughly.

Aldea Purdy's immediate neighbor to the south: Seeds of Change, an organic and heirloom seed research farm