I am happy to be participating in this year's Localtopia, which is a community celebration of at things St. Petersburg!
instead of selling my artwork, I will be bringing my 2nd love to share, art making. I decided on a "I St. Pete" themed craft that is for adults, since so many of these make + takes are kid themed. Don't worry, I will have art supplies for the kids to make a little something as well. Adults will pay $10 for their project, and kids will get to art it up by donation.
Hope to see you there, it is the busiest event of the year in St. Pete!
I was happy to have been asked to design, create and silkscreen two original designs for the MFA's Make + Take for November's two sessions. This was the first time I have done a workshop with the cornerstone of St. Pete's art museums, and I was excited to work in the beautiful light filled lobby! Below, some progress pics of the screen making process, and the apron screening action in the museum.
I have some experience designing and creating silkscreens...you can see what I have done with my other silkscreen designs in the Wearable Art and Painting galleries.
I was invited to speak about my work in this exhibit alongside five other women artists in the show, It was fun because I had never spoken about my work on a microphone in front of a captive audience before. Plus, three of the artists speaking were good friends Coralette Damme, Perry deVick and Polly Johnson, which made it easier!
A few years ago I attended my first Wearable Art show at Dunedin Fine Art Center and I remember being in awe at how creative and well produced it was. I love fashion and glamour and wondered if I would ever be a part of it in the future. A lot of work goes into such an endeavor, as well as a lot of time, energy, and skill in building multiple looks.
Well, I got to know the folks at DFAC over the years, and one of my friends over there asked me about being a designer. I took that as a sign it was a good time to pull the trigger, but would need some assistance. I asked my friend Michael if he would want to team up, and he did. We had similar interests in Native American art and color, so we looked at the Hopi Native Americans Kachina dolls for inspiration.
Below see some progress pics as I experimented ( and struggled a lot) with constructing head dresses tat would stay up and not fall off during our dance movements.
My latest finished piece for the "Beautiful Worries" exhibit in Tampa that was on August 29th. My first attempt at cutting into an authentic aluminum street sign sign mounted on cradled wood board was a success....I plan on exploring this technique more.
This piece shares a portion of the internal dialogue we have all had with ourselves after a big decision or life event. Recently, I made a big change: taking a year leave from teaching elementary art to pursue my lifelong passion, creating art. In the past, I didn’t have the courage to make such a choice, but this year I was ready, and afterwards I felt relieved and excited to see what would transpire. The “one way” sign is a central part of this piece because for 11 years I was on a one-way track that I didn’t necessarily want to be on for the rest of my artistic career. I think a lot of people are uncomfortable with making their own way and take the path that is marked because it’s easier. They follow the signs; follow the rules, and some wish that they could go their own way. Well, I wanted to stop the cycle, and utilize my talents to see where they will take me. I now find myself wondering, “Now what?” will happen, or should happen. One thing I am sure of, I look forward to the journey on this road less traveled.
"Now What" by DemiGod. 2015. Street sign on painted wood board.
This exhibit had me designing and creating an original piece of artwork on a blank skate deck along with 100 other Tampa Bay artists for the Shuvit exhibit. I have designed a skate deck before for Local Longboard Co., and really liked the format, so I signed up again, but this time the board was about half the size. Also, the organizers have displayed the artwork in 4 of downtown St. Pete's favorite bars, and made it a pub crawl.
Below, see the progress of the board I titled "I Do What I Want". I went about it by thinking of something that would fit inside the difficult shape of the board. Animals have been showing up more in my work, and the horse head would fit nicely, although I almost chose a snake entwined. As I do, I looked up the symbology of a horse and it embodied independence and strength, when I saw that, I knew it had to be a horse. This past school year I have been working up the courage to take a break from teaching art in the same public school for the past 11 years. This summer was the first time I have really felt free and like I had time to explore other career options. Also, the last photo is the first board I designed in 2014.
Puppetry was practiced in Ancient Greece, and the Greek word translated as "puppet" is "νευρόσπαστος" (nevrospastos), which literally means "drawn by strings, string-pulling",from "νεῦρον" (nevron), meaning either "sinew, tendon, muscle, string", or "wire", and "σπάω" (spaō), meaning "draw, pull".
About last week I started working on my piece for the Florida CraftArt exhibition curated by a friend of mine, Christine Renc-Carter, from Dunedin Fine Art Center. Since I have never ventured to think about puppets before, I wasn't sure how to approach this, but as usual I was up for the challenge! I wanted to come up with something different than you would expect to see at a puppet exhibit. This show has come right after my latest duo exhibition, In Our Wake, where I featured a lot of natural found objects. I continued to use found bits and pieces from nature for this "puppet". The special thing about this show is that a collector will be displaying his puppets that he's been gathering from around the world. There are 10 other St. Petersburg, Florida artists that were invited to participate and create their own puppets. So far here are some detail shots of what I have come up with. You will see the final piece on opening night at the end of June. I'm really looking forward to this exhibit because puppets, in my opinion, are like cousins to masks.
I am SO excited to share the progress of the biggest exhibit of my art career...In Our Wake. This opportunity was presented to me by Perry, another art educator, who I didn't know very well in the beginning of this adventure. I have seen her detailed oil paintings at a couple exhibits that we have both participated in, and admired her skill. Turns out she was also admiring my mixed media sculptures and asked me to provide the perfect compliment in a two woman show.
So, off we went! We began in the summer of 2014 with the theme she came up with which was post-apocalyptic Florida, or what would Florida look like devoid of humans. Honestly, I was bewildered as to what angle I would approach this unique theme, but I started by researching animals and nature taking over the man made environment. Thankfully the images that I saw in that research, and lots of dog walks and thinking helped me arrive to something special!
The thing that set me into motion was the idea of joining my two loves, nature, and religion, together. I thought, what would happen if animals evolved so much that they started their own way of honoring their dead, like we honor saints? Thoughts turned to relics and reliquaries, and from that point on, I was on fire! Below see some of the progress pics that belong to the greatest work I have ever created. I am thankful to Perry for thinking of me, and to my hands and mind for giving me the ability to express myself and create in a way I never thought possible! Go to gallery under sculpture and painting to see the final products.
About a year ago, I discovered that I had a friend in the St. Petersburg art community that was also a fellow art educator. I friended her on Instagram and Facebook, and discovered she was a REALLY amazing oil painter that went to college at Ringling, one of the best art schools in this area. I oogled over her talent, and she was liking some of my artwork online as well. This past spring, she approached me about having a duo art exhibit here in St. Pete. Since she was a painter, she was looking for someone that produced artwork in a different medium, and she left it up to me as to which I wanted to work in. It is hard for me to decide, since I like to work in mixed media, but I know as soon as the ideas flowed, I could nail down a medium. But I was thinking found object sculpture. Next, she told me what theme she was thinking about, and I was perplexed at how I would contribute. She gave some examples of what she was using for inspiration, and luckily that helped me generate some ideas.
The theme had to do with post apocalyptic Florida, and all that remains is wildlife. My mind went straight to robots and sci-fi movies, but then I decided to focus on the animal aspect. I began researching the history of Florida, its inhabitants, the animals that were around then. Then, I thought about nature taking over man made objects (buildings, cars, homes) and found some interesting things on the web. But then, I had an epiphany! What is the animals societies developed so much, that they had a religion? After that thought, it was all over. I cant say more than that, but the pictures that follow will give you a taste of the 2 pieces I have finished so far.
Some things I pulled to construct some of my found object sculptures...I love that I get to use the things that I have been collecting in an exciting way!
Mexican folk art is very inspirational to me. Its loud colors and nod to the Catholic religion resonate with me and my artwork. I was excited to present this workshop that featured a popular motif, the corazon, or heart. I use a lot of hearts in my work, and the flaming sacred heart is part of my logo I love it so much. I couldn't help but to create a new lino cut to fit inside the wooden heart and paint then print on the wooden heart. Check out the progress as I sketched it out, hand carved and printed it below. Some are available for purchase at DFAC's gift shop.
Tonight was my first time leading a workshop at my favorite art centers in this area, the Dunedin Fine Art Center in beautiful artsy Dunedin, Florida. Valentines Day was approaching, so I thought this would be a great time to approach them about working with hearts. I decided that I would provide participants with 9 inch wooden hearts I cut out in my Dad's workshop, and bring lots of paint, embellishments like beads, wire, tiny nails and stencils. Students were encouraged, and brought extras like gold leaf, and Milagros to add.
It was a small group of ladies, and it was an extra bonus that that DFAC allowed students to BYOB, which most did! Below check out some prep and outcomes of the workshop.
I plan on teaching a class at DFAC this Fall/ WInter, more info to come with that...
The heart I made during the workshop. XO!