Saturday, May 31, 2008

"Round the Fountain" Art Festival

Last Saturday Jon and I did a small one day show up in Lafayette Indiana. This was the shows' 35th year. Seated around the historic limestone courthouse, this one day event proved pleasurable and profitable on many counts. Usually enduring inclement weather, this year we had sunny skies, brisk air and great crowds. The patrons that come to this annual event look forward to it and grace the exhibiting artists with genuine interest and purchase their work. Can we ask for more? There's also a strawberry shortcake fundraiser that happens there too!

We got to see friends and catch up, some we hadn't seen since before winter. Early afternoon the committiee of green shirted volunteers awarded ribbons and checks to those who were awarded them through on site judging. Jon and I got a shiny blue ribbon and check! I love getting ribbons! This means we are jury exempt for next years festival and I can build on the momentum our work received. It's all good!

Here we are, with our ribbon!

Thank you to those patrons who buy original art and help make viable the living of artists like myself.
I am greatful for your support and passion!


Thursday, May 29, 2008

Pacing Ones Self

Things here on Purple Hill are green! Everything is growing and blooming, which is wonderful after a long, drawn out winter.
That's the upside. The downside is, seasonal allergies. They're the pits! I long for this time of year but also know that with it comes irate sneezing and aggrivation with doors open or being outdoors. I have to limit both. When my allergies go out of control, so does my blood sugar. Then fatigue sets in. Moderation!

Today I weeded and cleared grass around a maple tree in our yard. I hope to add compost and plant vinca around the base of it. I have it growling like crazy in beds and can easily spread this prolific ground cover. I got one tree cleared. The rest will be done another day. Small amounts to keep things from overwhelming.

My new garden patch is cleared and awaits my tending.........

All in due time.


Tuesday, May 27, 2008

♥♥ Friends Rock! ♥♥

Here's to the friends that fulfill and enrich our lives with laughter, understanding and the everyday common occurances that bond us all!
This is another box from that went into my By Hand exhibit.

Hugs to all and here's a toast to friends!

Pat & Jon

"Art Rocks Box"


Sunday, May 25, 2008

•Day of the Dead Charm Gourd•

Resting today after what has been a roller coaster the last 3 weeks.
At left is a photo of a new gourd I made that is in my exhibit at the By Hand Gallery here in Bloomington.
The exhibit runs through July 4th, 2008.
This is the smallest gourd, but my most intense. It's stamped with numerous playful Day of the Dead stamps and embellished with a plethora of beads and silk
emphemra that exude the passion and color of "Day of the Dead". Around the top I crocheted a wonderful black fringe thread that adds to the fun and texture!
(You can click on my blog photos and they will open in a new window in a larger format)


Day of the Dead Charm Gourd
By Hand Gallery


Monday, May 19, 2008

♥ May 19, 1984 ♥

It was a clear blue sky that greeted the happy couple as they walked hand in hand outside the old Spanish style doors that graced St. Anthony's Catholic Church in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Puffy white clouds and palm trees decorated the sky. The bride and groom were both dressed in white. Friends and family wished them well and gathered at a local nature reserve afterward and celebrated. Guests ate and fed apricot flavored white wedding cake to the raccoons on the nature trails and embedded memories that are crystal clear 24 years later.

This is how Jon and I spent May 19, 1984.
We each married our best friend!!
And the rest, as they say, is history.

His story and her story!

I love this man more every day!
Saint Anthony is the patron saint of things missing and we always said he helped us find one another.
The laughter and adventure continue to unfold as we make our journey through life together!

Sunday, May 18, 2008

"I See What You Mean"

It's not every day one gets to see a 40 foot tall blue bear. There has been one peering into the Denver Convention Center since we arrived! The permanent installation was done by sculptor Lawrence Argent and titled "I See What You Mean".

Today the big blue bear graced the coming and going of thousands of orthodontists and exhibitors as well as a legion of young high school graduates who donned red caps and gowns. One graduate was with us in the elevator to the parking garage.
We wished her well.
I wanted to say "I know how you feel".
The end of one part of lifes journey with the next unfolding almost too fast.
Both terrifying and exhilarating embodied in one!
I graduated 30 years ago. I remember the feeling!

I think the big blue bear said it best......."I see what you mean"!

There's still snow in the Rockies!


Saturday, May 17, 2008

Booth # 2043 Denver Convention Center

Here we are! Day one over and we're tired. A different kind of tired than an art fair. All in all a good day. We made contact with
hundreds of orthodontists and their staff. Wrote one order. Memories of the Las Vegas AAO had day two bearing better sales and day one folks just window shopping. Spoke with past customers who have loved their work and will be ordering more.
All good. Handed out easily 250 cards!
We like our spot. Location is everything at these pricey real estate shows. We have several tables and chairs across from our booth where impromptu meetings and business lunches occur lending clear sight into our colorful 100 square feet. All in all a day filled with thousands of very well manicured orthodontists. Only here and a gynocologist convention could bear better kept hands!!

Resting up for day two!
Snow still on mountains!


Thursday, May 15, 2008

In the Mile High City

We left our studio home last night at 7:30. A few delays in town set us back from leaving earlier, but this was fine. We had a nice dinner at home and hit the road. Drove to Columbia, MO last night. This evening we arrived in Denver as the sun was setting. In time to catch LOST!
It's chilly here and the news said it snowed this morning. Glad I brought my coat and socks! Also glad that we'll be inside for 4 days! Tomorrow we head to the convention center and set up our booth. With unions and drayage, setting up at these events is always a circus! For two people accoustomed to moving our stuff all over, little can be done without the unions stepping in to connect lights and lay carpet.........and get paid!!
Ugh...makes me glad we don't do this type of show all the time!
We're kind of colorful small potatoes at these shin-digs. Colgate, Crest, dental chairs and lights and all that sort of thing prevail in a big way with reps that fly in to work in their makeshift offices set up by crews ahead of them.
The funny thing is we're the ones who make what we're selling, and we drove it here, will set it up, and sell it. Next time someone says artists don't work hard, they better duck!!

The show opens Saturday morning and runs through Tuesday afternoon when we begin our drive home. We'll arrive home in time to kiss the kitties and repack the van for a one day show up in Lafayette IN. with the Hecker Design work.
On Sunday we hope to catch the time delay of the Indy 500 and celebrate with a little agave!!

Featured above is another vessel from my work that will show at By Hand Gallery.
This is the Petroglyph Bead Pot. An insane amount of intricate work that I became inthrawled doing. Every glass bead is hand stitched through the gourd with holes drilled first and a matching pearl inside to keep the stitch from pulling through. Weird how these activities relax me!!


Petroglyph Bead Pot
By Hand Gallery

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

By Hand Gallery

The last few weeks have consisted of working almost simultaneously on 3 bodies of work. Hecker Design work for the shows we're in, ArtfulSmiles for the Denver Orthodontic Convention and Tattoo Dreams work for my upcoming exhibit. Tomorow we'll deliver 35 pieces for the exhibit which runs from May 21-July 4th, thereabouts. We'll miss the opening but hope all goes well.
Featured tonight is one of three gourds I made in the exhibit. This is the Friendship Vessel.
It's emblazoned with a poem I wrote with stamps in hand. Lucky for me it all fit, as there's no erasing on a gourd!!! I love working with gourds. Their organic nature, smooth shell and warm caramel color I find lucious! I plan to grow some this summer if my green thumb is up to the task!


To all of you who have been so supportive of me the last few weeks and months, I hug you with open arms of thanks!


By Hand Gallery
101 W Kirkwood Ave # 109
Bloomington, IN 47404
(812) 334-3255

"Friendship Vessel" 95.00

Booth Shot

As any street artist knows, the ever important booth shot can weigh heavily on the minds of the jury. Todays image is of the booth shot we did in our driveway last night for my TattooDreams work. I plan to apply to Kentuck. Kentuck is an outsider art-folk art show I think this body of work could work well in. It does appear odd seeing this work in my regular art fair booth.
Time will tell as we zapplication ourselves to the jury!
It's taken the encouragement of friends (thank you) and the past Kentuck show director, Miah Michaelson to encourage me to go in this direction.
I'm excited......I need another iron in yet another fire!

I'll keep you posted!


Monday, May 12, 2008


The beauty of Cosanti and Arcosanti out in Arizona continue to unfold.
This outdoor workshop holds amazing talent, workmanship and possibility for
future environmentalism. This was tucked into my luggage and found yesterday.
I picked it up when there earlier this year.

The following inscription was carved into the student apse at Cosanti.
Done by J.J. Johnson, a silt pile participant in 1968 it reads:




Wednesday, May 7, 2008

♥ Mrs. Gaines ♥

Todays weather matches my mood. It's been raining on and off since I woke up. I learned yestrday of the death of a dear friend. She's been like a Mother to me for a long time. When my Mom was sick, this dear neighbor drove my Mom to cancer treatments hours away 3 times a week. She would check in on my Mom when my family was at work and school. She was my Moms friend and became like a second Mom to me. She taught me to sew and helped me make my Homecoming dress.
She gave me time.
She was fiesty and I loved that about her. She always looked after me, often to my fathers frustration. It was she that called my Grandmother to tell her I had moved out to my own apartment at 17. She didn't like my fathers new wife and knew my reasons for moving out.
She had my back and I never forgot it.
For the last several years she fought the likes of leukemia. On Monday it beat her. After a month long stay in the hospital, she was released and died peacfully in her own home.
My life was graced by her wit and wisdom and there will never be another Mrs.Gaines.
I'm flying to Florida for her service. My brother and his wife, my super sister-in-law Michele, are picking me up and we'll drive across the state to Fort Pierce. After the service, we'll drive back to St. Petersburg. I'll spend the night with them as they're in the process of moving this weekend and I'll fly home. I need this closure and her family needs our strength.
They were always there for us.
I can give her time.

Monday, May 5, 2008

♬ Cinco de Mayo ♬

Happy Cinco de Mayo everyone!
I love this holiday! I love the celebratory nature of the Mexican culture! Colors, music, and great food!
What more can one ask?
WIll do a little celebrating with the agave-Gods upon returning home tomorrow night. Will watch the election returns that will hopefully usher in change!
Rock the vote Obama!!!
Tabula Rasa my friends!

Sunday, May 4, 2008

Barack Obama

Change. Dignity. Hope.

In the past 7 1/2 years I have watched friends lose their jobs, their homes, their businesses and their dignity. It's these fundamental things that provide one with self-esteem and are basics to everday life. People my age and older are working harder and making less. When people lose hope they have no reason to look forward to becoming old. A health care system that is run by insurance companies for profit and out of reach to so many Americans is not something they can buy into. We have a government that has disenfranchised the people of this country and this world. Not a united states, but a divided, splintered country. I see this division among family members who dare not discuss the reality that has come to this country by way of poor leadership. Corporate interests cannot supercede the lives of individuals who have worked and fought so hard for this country. Wealth is about so much more than money! It's about passion and compassion.
This election has to bring about change!!!

We spoke with a wonderful couple today at the show who were retired and well in to their late 60's. It was refreshing to have a conversation with these older folks we could relate to! I respected their wisdom and open-mindedness. They lend their hope and votes, as do we, to Barack Obama! They work with their church in efforts to help the people of Darfur. They have traveled and worked with the people of Darfur to help bring in clean drinking water. Something we take for granted in this country.
Below is the group they work with:
I have other artist friends who will begin collecting Social Security this coming year. If the art business doesn't sustain them, they have decided to work on re-building homes in New Orleans with Habitat for Humanity. They feel compelled to humanitarian work and making a difference.

This is the America I am proud of!
People who care and stand with the conviction of their beliefs and act upon them!
Jon and I are gifted with a wide array of friends who inspire us daily. I feel blessed!

Saturday, May 3, 2008

The Big Indian

As promised, here's the Big Indian we see when we go to Texas. He lives in Big Cabin, Oklahoma. He stands 50-60 feet tall. Jon took this shot out the van window. To me his presence means we take a left turn when we see him and then go into Texas. Of course it's not nearly this simple, but I take a lot of naps in the van. The motion puts me to sleep. It always has. Even as a child. If I couldn't sleep, a short car ride would take care of that. Things haven't changed too much! So, in essence, when I see the Big Indian and take maybe 2 more naps, we're usually there!

Friday, May 2, 2008

On The Road.........

Tonight finds us in Dallas Texas. Our booth is set up for the Cottonwood Arts Festival and we are ready to rock! New work is proudly hanging. I made 4 new pieces in the two weeks home, not to mention a few 'other' projects we had in the works!
After being as busy as we've been for the last week, doing a show will feel like a 'vacation'! We have slowly caught up on sleep but still find it hard to believe that we left our Bloomington studio last night at 5pm and here we are in Texas! Time flies!

Today we photographed the Big Indian in Oklahoma. When I see him, I always feel we just take a left and then go to Texas. I hate maps and like to keep things simple. Have you noticed?
Saw lots of friends this evening and will visit more over the next 2 days. The comraderie of kindred spirits and the joy of sharing our work keeps this lifestyle a way of life for us. We complain now and then, but do so love it. Lets face it, gone are the days of job security.......I might as well find joy in my life doing something I absolutly love since I spend so much time doing it!

Life is good and we're here to make it better!
Goodnight from Dallas Texas!


Thursday, May 1, 2008

Orphan Works Bill

Orphan Works Bill - Don’t Lose the Rights to Your Work

Here is a call to action from artist Jon Hecker.

Time to write! Please take action now! These proposed changes to the copyright law affect artists! I just sent three letters to my two Senators and district Congressional Representative. I laid out the moving story of how this bill would affect our livelihood. As independent artists, we receive no pension and we view ownership of our copyrights as our primary job security. It is critical that we as artists battle this proposed legislation.

In case you’re not too familiar with the issues at stake here, this webcast interview with Brad Holland about the Orphan Works act bill, offers insight to the ramifications of this bill if it should pass. The mp3 webcast interview about the Orphan Works act bill can be heard at:

The changes in the copyright laws proposed under the new “Orphan Works” bill have been released and it will affect your creative career!

Write your Reps and Senators.
Refer to Bill H.R. 5889 when writing a House Rep.
Refer to Bill S. 2913 when writing a Senator.
Same Orphan Works bill, different #’s for Senate and House.

Go to: to get the contact info for your state’s officials.

This affects all of us, painters, photographers and designers alike and is getting fast tracked to get through now.

Please take time to write! Fax or snail mail in addition to any emails you’d send too please. A sample letter is below at the end of this email.

For more info on this matter go to:

This was posted by Stella on “The Art of Licensing” Yahoo group and sums up the consequences if this bill passes:

“If we do not stop BOTH Orphan Works Bills NOW-
It does not matter that you created it.
It does not matter that you have a copyright mark on it.
It does not matter that it is registered in the Library of Congress.
It does not matter that you signed it.
It does not matter that you put a big fat watermark across it.
It does not matter that you put digital signatures on it.
It does not matter if you get a lawyer- you will get a pittance determined by the offending company and no reimbursement for legal fees.
It does not matter even if you do as they demand and pay to register it in the new registries that they will form - there is no real punishment for using your work for profit.
It does not matter that you do not want your image used on a product or to promote an agenda.
They can even sell your prints and make money!”

From Illustrators Partnership and posted on the Art of Licensing Yahoo Group by Stella too:

Here is a sample letter you can edit and send to your local and/or state representatives and Senators. These letters work best when you make your point clear, do not curse, and make them aware that you live in their district or state and can vote for or against them.

Feel free to make this personal with your story on how the Orphan Works legislation will harm your income. Stories are incredibly powerful.

Faxes work better than e-mails, as e-mails are too easy to delete.

Congressman/Congresswoman/Senator (their name)
(their contact info)
Fax: (their fax number)

Re: The Orphan Works legislation Bill # (either H.R. 5889 or S. 2913 depending who you’re writing)

Dear (their name),

My name is (your name) and I live in (your city, state). After reading about the Orphan Works bill, I am shocked and outraged that this could happen in our country.

This Orphan Works legislation, if passed, will severely impact my income and life as an artist. Not only will it give license for others to legally steal and use my work for free, it will be virtually impossible for me to afford the time and money to register my creations in all the potential new registries.

(your personal story if you wish. It should show hardship under the new bill)

I strongly urge you to vote AGAINST the Orphan Works bill and protect my rights, my copyrights, to all that I have and will create.

Thank you.


(your name)
(your address)


Thank you for joining with other creative image makers to get your voice heard!

Jon Hecker