Julia Humpfer: HerbstKind and Dreams

This morning, while I was drinking my coffee and browsing the web for some inspiration, I stumbled across these wonderful prints. I love the simple palette and intricate line work of Julia Humpfer's illustrations. Her drippy watercolor backgrounds remind me of the series of drawings I made last spring.

I have had some very vibrant dreams lately. I am hoping to put some of the images into some new drawings. Last night I was befriended by a beautiful deer, after I had run away from home and sought refuge in the wild forest. When I was re-captured, I hid the deer in my room between my clothes hanging in my closet. I could talk to the deer and it could understand me, but it couldn't talk back, it just made soft grunting sounds.  I was quickly sent away to a mountain school for witches, housed in a cold stone castle, where I learned to interpret secret messages coming from a small silver figure of a woman with a large bell skirt. The messages were from Xena the warrior princess.

Spring Bird

A few nights before this, I was escaping from two talking mountain lions who had the ability to walk on walls.  They were after me because I had not packed my suitcase fast enough. Interestingly, gaudy costume jewelry was the only thing I packed into the suitcase. The whole dream took place in a retail store that had closed for the night.

As I remember, David was calmly shopping in the dark while I was being attacked. 


Of course my favorite dream of recent weeks is the one where I am living with giant (as in the size of a house) talking bunnies in the woods. The rest of the dream was pretty complicated and it involved escaping (yet again) from bad guys who I believe were trying to smoke us out of the forest with torches. There were some gruesome scenes that took place in a castle, but the talking bunny part was pretty wonderful. I believe Albus Dumbledore also showed up at one point. 


So: themes of forests, bad guys, castles and talking animals. Pretty good material for some new pictures I think. Today, however, I have to make a trip to Raleigh (30 minutes away) to stock up on some panels for encaustic work and an encaustic workshop I am teaching with my friend Shannon in Washington State next week. I am sure I won't even get to start on any new drawing today. But the ideas will roll around in my head while I am driving back and forth from the art store. I hope that actually being in a forest next week will provide the perfect environment to begin the new series.

Have a happy, creative Friday everyone!

Gird with Birdy


One more lenten piece

During Lent I made two pieces but never posted pictures of the last one. Here are some images of that last piece. I am super happy with it, in fact it's hanging in my bathroom and I don't have plans on moving it any time soon.

"Purity of Heart"

These are square nails, which were made in this country during the period from 1820-1910. My friend Geno found them on the property where we live. I think they are quite beautiful. 

Made from wax, paper, book pages, square nails, oil pastel, and red string.

This piece excites me because I feel like it's an indication that I am finally starting to work more intuitively. Sometimes I work hard to fit so many layers of meaning into a piece, that it just becomes too full. I love the simplicity of this piece. It is usually hard for me to stop while a piece is simple enough; I often feel like I have not worked hard enough to stop.  I am thrilled that I might be learning how stop and be content with things sometimes not being so much work.

I think it might be about trusting myself and all the years of art making behind me, and believing that it does not always have to be hard. Maybe I'm also learning about grace. Soren Kierkegaard said: "Purity of heart is to will one thing". I think about that quote when I feel my mind is scattered and over-run with all that I have to keep up with. Perhaps in trying to work more simply I am practicing this muscle of willing one thing. Any way that that little gem can wriggle its way into my heart is welcome. 

Panels Part Two: Completion!

Well, after a rather lengthy delay, here is "part two" of the images from the large panels project . Thank you to All Saints Church for allowing me to do these wonderful pieces. Thank you North Carolina for a few weeks of perfect spring weather that allowed me to work on my porch. And thank you house for having such a great porch for me to work on!

After the first day of applying gold leaf -- one panel down. 

It took 250 sheets of gold leaf to cover both panels. 

I love the dark red paint peeking through the gold leaf; this stuff has such gorgeous texture. 

After the second day both panels have most of the leaf applied; still pieces to apply in the center to make the transition from gold to color more gradual. 

From the street--so shiny! 

Finished and in their new home: All Saints Church, Durham, NC.

After we delivered the panels we celebrated with Tacos from a red school bus! Check out the size of that grilled green onion. 

Easter Morning!

It was so amazing to get to work this large again. My brain is spinning with all kinds of ideas for large art works. Now I just need homes for them all. Anyone have a huge raftered ceiling that needs a hanging installation? Anyone have grant money for me to make it with? :) I dream of 50-foot ceilings and unlimited budgets. 


Good Friday

Tenebrae - Erica Grimm Vance

This Word played life against death and death against life in tournament on the wood of the most holy cross, so that by his death he destroyed our death, and to give us life he spent his own bodily life. With love, then, he has so drawn us and with his kindness so conquered our malice that every heart should be won over.

Catherine of Siena

Wall of Breath