Remembering 9-11-2001

I've been remembering the events of 9-1-2001.  It's been 18 years since that horrible day.  I distinctly remember what I was doing when I found out and will never forget the look on my husband's face during the attacks.  I remember feeling completely helpless as the events unfolded. The sorrow that overwhelmed me was intense.  So much loss.  So much pain.  The sorrow was smothering.  I kept watching the TV, trying to make sense of it all.  Of course, no sense was to be made.  It was madness.  
I was also mad. Mad at the audacity of the attacks, mad at the loss of life, mad at the terror that was inflicted on our nation.  I remember watching a video later of Osama Bin Laden stating that the entire country of America was in fear.  'No, I thought, You're going to see anger, our anger and we're fighting back.'  Anger wasn't just the only response though.  We saw people coming together, helping one another. We saw compassion, great compassion towards each ot…

Exalting Our Spirits

“I choose that my art be engaged in that which exalts the spirit of man.” Clyfford Still

Clyfford Still is one of my favorite artists and his work, inspiration.  There is a quote that describes Still on a mural in Denver.  It states:  "The canvas was his ally.  The paint and trowel were his weapons.  And the art world was his enemy."  Pretty powerful words for describing an artist but his work truly is powerful.  The boldness with which he painted has always struck me.  His mark making alone shows his confidence and his authority.  If ever you are in Denver, visiting the Clyfford Still Museum is a must. 

Clyfford Still PH-1187, 1956
The museum is one of my favorite places here in Denver.  I can breathe there and just be.  I'm always ready to create after visiting his work.  Having such a wealth of inspiration so close is wonderful.  For me, Still is successful, his work does exalt the spirit of man; his work is life, energy, and speaks from and to the spirit.  The pictures al…


To be an artist, you need to exist in a world of silence.  Louise Bourgeois

Louise Bourgeois is right, we need to exist in silence.  It is a part of the creative process.  Whether we create in quiet or not, silence is a necessary component of the creative life, our creative practice.  We need to create 'a world of silence'.  As artists, we think, we ruminate, we ponder.  We consider what we create and silence gives us the time and space needed to birth our ideas.   Silence connects us with our being; it allows us to be - to breathe, to be still, and it allows us to connect with something larger than ourselves.  Silence gives us the permission to be within ourselves, to tap into our creativity so we can create. Silence rejuvenates us in a way that no other activity can.  It gives us permission to let go of matters that weigh us down or hinder our process.  It brings relief to the chaos of the day.  Art making is both physical and mental.  The observation, critiquing, contemplating,…

The Gift of Doubt

The greater the artist, the greater the doubt. Perfect confidence is granted to the less talented as a consolation prize.  Robert Hughes
I've heard this quote before from the critic and author, Robert Hughes. I like how he addresses doubt.  We all have it.  We all face those times in the studio where doubt creeps in and tries to take over our creativity.  And, it doesn't matter how long you've had your practice, it just happens.  I don't know of one artist who hasn't struggled with doubt.   But the issue is how we address and handle doubt when it arises.  I've seen doubt paralyze artists and I've seen it spur artists onto creating wonderful works.  It can do both.  Do we, as artists, rise to the challenge and face doubt or do we shrink from our calling and quit? Doubt is a nasty animal - it would love for us to quit but as artists, we can't allow it to dictate our creativity - or our practice.  Doubt can also be a gift.  It can move us to dig deeper into ou…

Deepening the Mystery

“The job of the artist is always to deepen the mystery.”  Francis Bacon
I love this quote from Francis Bacon.  It speaks of the vocation of the arts and artist.  To deepen the mystery is to tap into the spirit of the artist and transform that into a visual representation of what that spirit says and is.  How do you hold mystery and show it in a work of art? Is mystery something that can be tangibly expressed?   I believe it can for art is a spirit to spirit communication.  Mystery, cannot be completely defined for within it, it contains an essence that goes beyond our comprehension.  Mystery is perceived when it exists, it makes great art.  The Masters of Old were able to grasp and express it within their work.  The art goes beyond mere storytelling, copying, and expression.  It touches the human experience, touches something universal that we, as humans, can relate to and discern. Mystery deepens our awareness of something beyond ourselves.  And when it exists within art, the art become…

Back Home


Well, I'm back home from my residency and hit the ground running with hanging my work with the artists of the new, D'art Gallery here in Denver.  I'm so excited about this group of artists.  Seventeen of us formed this gallery in the heart of the Santa Fe Arts District in Denver, CO.  It's a vibrant group of artists to work with and I'm grateful to be a part of the gallery.  Our grand opening is this Friday from 6-9pm at 900 Santa Fe Dr. if any of you are free to join us!

Since I've been back I haven't been able to get into the studio - yet - but I've got a few ideas cooking in the meantime.  I have been working on a commission project but my fine art work has taken a back seat for now.  That's ok because next week, I'll be back in the swing of things. 

My hubby, Randy and I had a great time in Arroyo Grande visiting friends, seeing wine country and of course, sampling the wine, and visiting the beach.  It was such a needed trip after an …

Artist Residency Part 3


Well, the alumni artist residency is wrapping up and it's been wonderful.  I've enjoyed getting to know the students and faculty of Azusa Pacific University.  It's been a time of rich discussions, renewing friendships and beginning new ones, and deep fellowship.  It's been a time of creativity and production for me as well.  I've been exploring both new and old materials and ways of working.

Indie Yarn with Thai Bird's Nest Paper - In Process 

I've discovered Indie yarn.  It's wonderful!  I'm currently working with it sewing it into Thai Bird's Nest Paper.  The work is so new I'm not sure what I'm doing with it yet.  All I know is that I needed to sew it into the paper.  I'm planning on painting it but need to sit with it before I do so.  Sometimes, I just need to piece to speak to me to tell me what to do with it.  This is one of those pieces.  I trust the process, the intuition, and the materials to direct me. 

We also went…