Art where you work

Where I work there’s a long long hallway, and time was, when you’d be walking down it from here to there, it would be the most boring walk – unless you brought a book along to read as you went — which I often did.  Somewhat more than a year ago, an enterprising fellow decided to jump through the hoops necessary to bring art to the hallway.  He hung a marvelous set of pieces, mostly I believe from the collections of fellow employees and bosses.  And recently he announced that he was taking suggestions for a new set of art – it could be employees’ work, or our family members’, or pieces from our collections. Guess whose hand went up fast?  Pick me! Pick me!  And so I got picked to adorn a section of that long grey concrete hallway — to show the people I work with, most of whom have no idea what I do when I leave work, the arty side of me.

But what to choose!  The pieces had to be hang-up-able, none of my fabric vases or bowls, no mixed-media boxes, no bowties or lutradur butterfly earrings.  I did want to show some of the unusual and innovative materials and processes that I use, and I wanted to show my range.  So what do you think — here’s my display:

A closer view of the pieces on the left side (if you click on the picture you can see it a bit larger):

First on the left is your basic framed print, my shot of an odontoglossum orchid (say that 3 times fast), below that is my mixed media piece called Hidden Treasure, which is a heat transfer to canvas of a self-portrait double exposure I took of myself years ago. If it’s familiar to you, we’re probably Facebook friends, because the image is my FB avatar.   Above that to the right is my Lavender Rust art quilt in a frame that I finished with Transfer Artist Paper.  I’ve written about my process in making the quilt at this link. And I’ve written about finishing it and framing it at this link. Then the last piece in this section is a framed print of my Bamboo image, which is a photograph of a bamboo shoot in our garden that I simplified and rendered to look like a pencil drawing.

And the other side:

First at the left top is my Koi Pond and Wisteria blended collage, which I printed on lutradur.  I framed it in a glass floating frame, to emphasize the translucency of the lutradur. This is my blog post talking about the piece.  Below that is my Fallen Log and Fossil blended collage, which is a Transfer Artist Paper transfer to an art board.  This is my blog post about that piece. Above that to the right is a small art quilt, a print of my Iris Dream blended collage on cotton, which I quilted with metallic thread and mounted on a piece of metal mesh and adorned with pearls stitched to the mesh at random.  Finally at the bottom right is another framed print, this one of my Egret Swirl image – a photograph of an egret fishing in Lake Merritt, which I rendered to look a bit abstract and dreamy.

Next week he’ll put up the bios that we wrote and the blurbs for each piece, and I’m very curious to see whether people let me know what they think.  Before I left work today, I walked down the hallway and two of my co-workers were looking at the Hidden Treasure piece.   Near the top is a piece of copper that I embossed with the title of the piece: “Hidden Treasure”.  They weren’t sure what it said, so I just sidled over and said, “Yeah, it’s ‘hidden treasure'”.   I probably shouldn’t have intruded, they didn’t react, but oh well.

So I didn’t tell you about the rest of the art along the long hallway — there are some incredible underwater photographs printed on canvas, and two sublime quilts.  I love the variety of the entire collection.  Anyway, I’m just sayin’ — if you need a push to get the courage up to ask to adorn a blank wall where you work, where you get your coffee every morning, whatever, consider yourself pushed!

Open Studio and Gift Sale 2010

Okay, I know it’s early to think about the holidays — I couldn’t believe that they already started airing Christmas ads on TV.  So think of this as just a “save the date” post.   After five steady years of holding Open Studios twice a year, I skipped last year.  But I have so many new wonderful gifts and creations to share with you, I decided to resume and I will hold my Holiday Gift Sale and Open Studio the first two weekends of December this year.   If you’re in the Bay Area, come on by for some yummy treats and good conversation — December 4-5 and 11-12, from 10 am to 5 pm.  You can email me for directions or if you have other questions.  I have a wide range of  my handmade gifts (for yourself or for friends and family), at all different prices – many under $20.  And if you follow my blog, you know I have some special new gifts for your pets!

I’d love to send you a postcard reminder – just email me your mailing address.  If you can’t make it this year, I have a lot of work to share with you in my new Artfire gallery, or check out the new ornaments and other things (t-shirts, totes, sneakers, ties, etc.) with my images on them in my Zazzle gallery.

Handmade gifts with your inkjet printer : one-day workshop November 21st


Tote bag with Lars portrait

Tote bag with Lars portrait

I look forward to this workshop all year — it gives you a chance to try any of the techniques that I teach, and sparks your imagination to go home and make gifts for everyone on your holiday list!   I’ll show you how to make personalized gifts for friends and family or for yourself, using your own photos, designs, or other material — and your home printer.

Pet squeaky toy ornament

Pet squeaky toy ornament

We’ll explore a  variety of different techniques to create unique gifts, like printing on fabric and other special surfaces ideal for making presents.  Each person will complete at least one project at the workshop, and you’ll go home with many ideas and new things to try on your own printer.  There’s plenty of time before the holidays to create gifts for everyone on your list!

Pillow

Pillow

When you make a personalized gift you can save money and show that you care to take the time to create something special for your loved ones.

Light switch plate

Light switch plate

You can use photographs and the originals or scanned memorabilia of things in your lives together for gifts that people will treasure and keep.

The workshop is Sunday November 21, 2010, noon to 3:30.  Cost is $40 plus materials. It will be held at the Canyon Trail Art Center in El Cerrito California.  Pre-registration is required.  If you have questions or want to pre-register, email me at heidirand@gmail.com.

If you want to see some of the gifts that I make from my photographs and designs, please visit my Artfire shop or my ETSY shop.

Pinole Art Center Too!

Pinole Artisans, a wonderful group of artists and crafters in the East Bay, just opened a second gallery at the Pinole Valley Mall (across the mall from Trader Joe’s), just off I-80 at Pinole Valley Road.  The original gallery, still open — the grand opening of the newest show will be Saturday September 12th — is at 2221 Pear Street in Old Pinole, right near City Hall.

Initially, the hours for the new gallery will be 4 to 8 pm, Thursday through Sunday.  We had a glorious grand opening on Saturday September 5th for the first show: The Drama of Light.  Here’s Joan Landis, the immediate past president of Pinole Artisans and current manager of both Pinole Art galleries, cutting the celebratory cake ….  Ira Nelken, current president of Pinole Artisans, supervises.

Joan Landis cuts the cake!

Joan Landis cuts the cake!

The gallery is large and light, showing the artwork off beautifully.  The walls and panels are covered with an amazing array of paintings, photographs and mixed media artwork.  Fiber art, including scarves and purses, also adorn the walls.  The many talented jewelry-artist members of Pinole Artisans have filled the glass cases at the new gallery with a wonderful variety of handcrafted necklaces, bracelets, earrings, and pins, including PMC, beadwork, polymer art and my butterfly earrings made from lutradur.

Grand opening

Grand opening

The big attraction on Saturday was an amazing sculpture by Donald Lieske.  Lieske is an incredibly talented sculptor who uses recycled materials to create unusual and thought-provoking metal works, usually with incisive wordplay titles.  Many of Lieske’s pieces are mechanical and use electricity. This rolling ball sculpture combines light, sound and movement:

Donald Lieske sculpture

Donald Lieske's rolling ball sculpture

The gallery also has an abundance of surfaces to display 3-D arts and crafts, good news for me because so much of my artwork doesn’t hang on the wall.  There are shelves for the many things I make out of the fabric that I design and print: vases, fabric books, pillows, purses, and more, my tile boxes, etc.

Grand opening

Grand opening

The Pinole Artisans meet the first Friday of every month, usually at the Pinole United Methodist Church, 2000 San Pablo Avenue, in Pinole (make a right just past the Bus Stop Mural if you are coming up out of Old Town Pinole toward Appian Way).  It’s a very friendly and talented group of people — notable for welcoming a wide variety of artisans.  Members also offer art classes on a range of subjects.  If you’re interested in learning more about the group, check out the website:  http://pinoleartisans.org/ and come to a meeting.

To exhibit your work in the Art Centers, you must be a member and sit for a number of hours a week (currently 4) in one or the other gallery.  The shows last about two months.  If you have any questions, call the Artisans at (510) 724-2008.