Wednesday, January 26, 2011

journal giveaway!

It's not too late to get in on the drawing for this springy journal that I made for the PAC blog giveaway! It is soft and quilty and a perfect travel journal. or just good for any kind of journaling.

This palette is one of my super minis that I have made to sell, and this one is created from a tiny altoids tin and air dry clay with M graham artists watercolors. Just leave a comment and you may be the lucky winner of this journal.

Monday, January 24, 2011

In a La Nina year, it is good to remind ourselves of the fact that this is still winter, and even in Hawaii, the rain does fall. It is warm rain, and our wise friend, Katy K. came up with the saying on this page. I think it is so good that the Hawaii tourism bureau might want to use that in their advertising! So we have not let the rain slow us down much. As the locals say, "if you don't like the weather, just drive five miles and it will be different"
This is the end of the road in Kaua'i, at Ke'e beach. It was a lovely spot to sit and sketch and I imagined that the landscape was mush unchanged over time. While the family hiked here, I walked up the road to Limahuli garden, one of the foremost natural botanical gardens in the US.
In recent travel journals, I have taken to kee ping a day by day log of weather and activities, etc. It is a kind of shorthand that is easy for me to keep up and I don't feel so bad if I don't do a page a day. I always like to refer back to where we ate or stayed each night, and when I look at this, I realize that it was sunny most days.
This is the spectacular setting of our condo unit at Sea Mountain village on Hawaii near the famous black sand beach at Punalu'u. Each day we saw sea turtles there, too.
I thought these seed pods were gorgeous. They come from the autograph tree,the leaves of which were used in Asia for playing cards. One can scratch into the surface and they keep the design.
Rambutan are my favorite crazy tropical fruit. They are much like the lychee, soft and fleshy.These were are the Hilo farmer's market, one of the best on the island.
Gorgeous protea captured my attention, athat d I just had to buy a couple to try to sketch. They are not that easy!
These antherium are plentiful here on the big island. Not my personal favorite, but it is interesting to see the different varieties, and color variations.
I always wish I could bring home one of these tropical beauties. But I just have to take a photo and enjoy them while I am here.
I usually buy at least a few stems of flowers to have in the room, and these have provided me with a lot of pleasure and sketching opportunities. I think I will leave them with my friend Judy when I leave the big island in a couple of days.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

A change of scene

As I mentioned in my previous post, I am always seeking more light, more sun during the dark days of winter. Sometimes you just need to get a little further from home (if you live in the Northwest) to find that. So, several years ago, we decided that we needed at least a week of sunshine to get us through until March. Hawaii is one of our favorite destinations, and this year we decided to bring the whole family along, for what my be a once in a lifetime trip together.
Our first day on Oahau was gorgeous, so I got to do a quick journal page as we sat on the grass, overlooking the ocean, waiting to get into our room. Much better place to hangout than the hotel lobby!

The next day was quite rainy, however, as predicted by the lovely hula dancer that we watched over sunset cocktails the night before. So that meant a change of plans, and a little retail therapy. Window shopping, mostly, but I do like to go to my favorite Japanese bargain store, Marukai. I used to be sucked in by these cute little Japanese gewgaws, but now I have an easier time resisting the urge to bring home a miniature set of woven sandals, or a set of erasers in the form of sushi. Fun to look, though!
Another favorite stop is Nieman Marcus at the Ala Moana mall, where I saw what looked like a shelf of coral formations, but was actually beautiful napkin rings. This is a great store for visual stimulation and a good place to get out of the rain.
The koi seemed quite content to pose for me. The koi seemed quite happy to pose for me, swimming up in formation right in front of the camera.A pleasant way to spend an idle hour.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Year's end, New year

I can't think of a better message to send out to all of you , after a long blogging haitus. I have missed writing this blog, but I suppose my head has been too full of other things to fully concentrate on this task. I am looking forward to a new year, as I hope you are, too. To fresh starts, to family and more travel and art. I hope you will rejoin me on my journey.
Speaking of travel, this was probably the most beautiful window I saw all season, at my favorite store in Seattle, Souvenier. It is located in a cluster of other fun stores in Ballard which continues to evolve into a fun shopping destination.
This fox was one of many incredible paper sculptures featured in a show at Souvenier. These figures were about 24 inches high and had beautiful, intricate features. There is always something wonderful to see at Souvenier.
I am always seeking more light at this time of the year--anything to dispel the gloom. This butterfly was one of the best of the many light displays at zoolights, which always puts us in the holiday mood. Don't wait until the week before Christmas to go see the lights like we did, though. It was a real zoo!
One of the best things about winter, in my opinion, is candles, and lots of them. We welcome the return of the light by celebrating the solstice and we burn candles to bring more light into our lives.
Paxton Gate is my new discovery in Portland, and I recommend that those of you who live here should take a field trip there as soon as you can. It is hard to describe, but it is like no other store I know. This is where you would go to buy a stuffed black squirrel, a unique piece of jewelry in the shape of a wishbone or some test tubes, which brought back memories of visiting my dad at his chemistry lab.
A good reminder of what we can all strive for in our lives in the coming year.

We have experienced much loss during this last year, but that is balanced by additions to our family, notably Julia Mae Felicite Boyer, who was born in France in August. I have taught some wonderful journal classes from Portland to Eugene and hope to teach several more classes this coming year. We also have some exciting travel plans, so tune in again, for more from Hiddenneststudio in 2011. Happy New Year!