Wednesday, December 17, 2014


Indeed, the last few weeks have been spent working on carving(!) a piece of alabaster.

Who knew you could saw stone?  Our teacher gave us lots of demos for how to let the stone become the form it wants to be.  After Paul helped me saw (which took 2 hours or so) and it was two pieces, then I started to chisel.  

 Here is an action photo using the flat chisel:

What did the stone want to become, you ask? Well, with a little guidance from me, it became a cheeseboard and matching nut bowl!

The last photo was during our final critique. I put dried beans in the bowl instead of nuts, assuming people would reach in and get their germy hands all over the bowl--beans seemed a cheaper way of wasting food.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

New Parsley Art Studio Website

Parsley Art Studio's website has been updated!  There are still a few small kinks to work out, mostly to do with class offerings, but WELCOME! Come have a look around!!!!

Creative Energy Rocks!

I've had so much energy to be in maker-mode for the last 6 weeks I'm exhausted. But it is super totally fun, and productive!  

Little paper houses have been taking over my life!  Here are some updated photos:

That last photo shows the same house as in my last post, just on a base and with the wiring all set up. The little pouch is the battery pack, which you could hide behind a book or a lamp or something if you don't want it to show.

Also in the last 6 weeks, I've made this cool tool box, custom built to fit one of the shelves in my studio that wasn't being efficiently used. Now I have a place to store my hammer, tape measure, new Dremel, and such!

Two challenges in making the wooden box:
  • The transition from not knowing how to use power tools to knowing how to use power tools. It was a frustrating learning curve, and scary. But once I got it, I felt like Superwoman! Now I know how to use power tools and I can do anything!
  • Installing the drawer hardware on the bottom drawer--I needed Paul's expertise and even strength to get it all to work, but we did it together and now the drawer opens and closes like butta.

Finally, I've been wanting to develop DIY Advent Calendar kits for years. With a little feedback and help from my BFF, I finally got there. Visit my Etsy if you'd like to buy one! More calendar designs to come soon!

Sunday, September 14, 2014

A Light In a House

I've been wanting to make this project for a long time, and finally, here is a prototype!!  I made a template of my fold-up house, which is exciting enough, but then I made an LED light to go in it!  These are still in their developmental stages but I couldn't not share the progress with you.

My dad helped me to know what I'd be looking for if I went to Radio Shack. Indeed, I bought almost all the right stuff. I only needed a 2-battery holder, and the switch needs to be a bit bigger (the customer service guy at Radio Shack was completely useless).  But now I have a clue about what I'm doing and what I need.

The light is only a few components put together: a battery pack for 2 AAA batteries, some wire, a switch, and an LED "bulb." Isn't it fun?

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Must Love Art

Barbara Gilhooly and Ayn Hanna must be two of my fave all time artists. Their work, their studios, their commitment to the local art scene, their personalities... they are just great and they both provide constant inspiration to me. Well, they just got married! And in honor of their union, they had an art show that featured a ton of work by both of them. It was wonderful.  Both their websites are linked to this blog over on the right, or you can follow them on Facebook.

For their show, they invited their artist friends to make a heart for their Wall of Hearts, a centerpiece of the show. In fact, they exchanged vows right in front of this wall!  Everyone's art heart was so unique. Here's a close of up of the one I did. I sure wish you could see it in person... this photo barely does it justice!

"Cloud Nine"

Cloud Nine was collaged in a way similar to the pear I made for my mom a couple years ago. The balloon's basket is woven paper. The clouds and balloon are suspended by clear thread in a white frame. You can't see this, but the frame sits off the wall about an eighth of an inch, and the frame can be attached to the wall by magnets on flat-head nails. That isn't how it was displayed for this show, but that was the idea.

Here was my favorite amongst all the other hearts. 

"The Wedding Vow" by Mary Bergherr (from Minnesota)
Below was my other favorite piece at the show! Haha. The works in the background are all by Ayn Hanna.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Holding You Over

If you're a regular follower of my blog, you've noticed a pattern in my posting behavior, I'm sure. July and January are meager months. Despite aspirations to do more, it just always seems like January and July are great downtimes for me. Don't get me wrong, I'm making art, but it's mixed in with vacation and birthdays and relaxing on the deck and mountain bike rides and design phases, so you don't get to see me much around this time of year.

To hold you over for a few more days, here is a fun thing, one of our last projects in the drawing class last semester.  We did a collaborative color project, where we each had a segment of a magazine page.  We had to blow them up to be the size of our drawing paper and collaborate with others in the group who had similar coloring in their segment. 

1. The magazine segments, reassembled
2. The group's pieces, assembled
3. My part
4 & 5. To show you scale...

Something funny that happened was after the semester was over, I was happily catching up on my Martha Stewart Magazines one morning during breakfast, and I came across our page!!!!! It felt like an seeing an old friend again.

Thursday, July 3, 2014


 First, come in to this gallery!  I know I find it enticing...

Hmm, let's walk straight back to the corner. Whose piece is that right in the middle? Is that a cake?

Ah, It's a Cake Rock! Now you can see its scale. Wasn't it placed so nicely? Bonus news: it sold! I have a new collector!

Then, like in dreams, just blink and you're in a new location: Parsley Art Studio!

What's new this year?

 Outside, make your own bit of PAS-inspired art: a pop-up!

 Here are some samples (and the prototype).

Guests enjoying their Fort Collins Studio Tour visit!

The best part about this year? That Vine Arts helped to get more visitors up to our neck of the woods! It was fantastic! There were six of us neighborhood artists with open studios this year and as a result, I had over 100 visitors this weekend, as opposed to about 40 last year. It was so fun. I loved every minute. 

Thank you especially to my studio tour helpers (Kyran, Katie, Jane, and Brittany), and to all my guests. I loved sharing my space with you this weekend!

Now what shall I do next with these cute little things?

Thursday, June 19, 2014

It's a Cake Rock!

The Fort Collins Studio Tour is coming up in a week and I hope you'll swing by! Here is the piece I made for the gallery exhibition at the Lincoln Center.

"It's a Cake Rock!"

This piece measures 20"x30"--big for me! I'll post a photo of it in the gallery soon to give a sense of scale and to show you how wonderfully placed it was next to other works from local artists. Meanwhile, here's some detail.

This is mixed media (collaged paper, fabric, acrylic paint and pen & ink) on foam core (which I wouldn't do again, by the way).

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Card Swap 2014

Twenty-five of us participated this year in the 7th annual 6 Degrees of HLM International Card Swap! Here is the photo of everyone's cards laid out on the floor. 250 cards at once! Several (but not all) of the cards followed the theme (new this year) of either "blue" or "mountain."

Andrea (from Fort Collins) likes to recycle old cards she gets--since she received lots of cards when her two boys were born, she has lots of blue remnants.

Ambra (from Buffalo, NY) had to scrap her "blue" idea and at the last minute, she popped these out in just a couple hours.

Ann (from Bonsall, CA) joined in again after having last participated in the first year! She received a small blue coin purse from a friend and then documented its travels around her area, à la Amelie's gnome.

Arianna from Highlands Ranch, Colorado managed to participate in the swap in her last semester of college! She shared with me earlier in the year that her painting has been prolific since her study abroad experience at an art school in France her junior year--she even had a show up at a local coffee shop last winter! She was inspired by blue flowers for the swap, aiming for "refreshing." She says she always incorporates a French theme in her work now.

Brittany (from Fort Collins) diverged from the theme, but produced a crisp card appropriate for many occasions. She was so delighted to finally participate--she's been wanting to for years!

Carly and her mom Marty, both from Iowa, participated in the swap together.  I heard there was a day when they both worked diligently at the table together!  It seems card-making makes for excellent together time.  :)

Gaye (from Fort Collins) has had a pretty busy spring, so kept it simple with her fern photos from Belize.

Haley, also from the Fort, found an old drawing that she did, and modeled her mountain cards after that. With her highly scheduled life, this art project could travel round with her. All she needed was her pen and the blank card. Whether at home or standing in line, she could keep her commitment to the Card Swap!

These are my cards this year! I, too, have been busy with other art commitments, so I did my best to keep the small pieces to a minimum!  The design may seem a bit random, but be assured it fits both with blue and with mountain! Right when we started the swap, I was working on linear perspective and drawing boxes in my drawing class. It was actually one of my favorite assignments. At the end of class that day, we all hung our drawings up for the class to see, and in a passing moment, my teacher said that my drawing reminded her of Whole Foods marshmallows, pillowy and soft.  So these are mountains of marshmallows. The text behind the image is all the words I could think of that swam around in my head in regards to blue, mountains, and marshmallows. :) The coolest thing is that the little trees at the top are leftover from my swap card a few years ago. It was great to use them up!

Jacque, from the San Luis Valley in southern Colorado, was also finishing up her last semester of college as she made her cards. She minored in botany and found this particular flower in the Colorado State University greenhouse. She loves painting plants.

Jenn (from Long Island in New York) found a hole punch and came up with a more abstract, simple interpretation of our mountain theme.

Jennifer (from Santa Rosa, CA) used salt in her painting to get the fuzzy effect. She painted over star stickers, then removed them to get the star shapes in the night skies over the hills.

Katie made four mini origami cranes for each card! That is a lot of cranes! She says she'd been collecting maps for some time and the blue theme inspired her to use them up.

Mary Lu and I spoke on the phone as she was working on her cards and she was convinced that she'd have to scrap them and start over. She said at one point that they were on the verge of looking like something a 3rd grader had made. But in the end they came together. I'd say this very adequately represents her style.

Katie's mom Mary participated for the first time this year. She downplayed her ability but I think her card certainly holds its own in our collection, and she really seemed to enjoy the project. She calls Fort Collins home and is sister to Marty and aunt to Carly. (Thanks, Katie, for doing such a great job recruiting your family!)

Mia is an artist who recently moved back to Fort Collins after teaching art in Oregon for a couple years. She was excited to be involved in a art activity soon after her return home.

Both Mia and Sarah (whose cards are below) used Linocut to make their cards. Kind of like woodblock printing, Linocuts are carved from linoleum. From what I saw at the Card Swap work party in April, I was impressed at how quickly Sarah (from Fort Collins) went from just an idea, materials and tools to a solid card design and prints. She said "blue" took her to the ocean.

Mivvy (from the UK) went on vacation in Madeira and took these photos. Madeira is a mountainous Portuguese island off the coast of Morocco. These were the flowers she found in this tropical place.

Nancy is from Portland, OR and experimented with weaving paper! Close inspection of her cards shows a high level of detailed work!

Phuong (currently in Boston) has a lot going on this year with an infant, but every time I ask her to participate in an art project, she rises to the challenge! I love it. This year, Phuong sewed fabric onto paper. So simple and yet the final product is pretty sophisticated!

Shari is from Loveland, CO and had blue on her mind when selecting her papers.

This is Sue T's 3rd year in the swap. She is from Wisconsin and Arizona and does Iris-folding. I love the swirly effect that folding two or three different colors makes.

Susan is from Fort Collins and is an encaustic artist. She was inspired by the corrugated paper and wanted to try out the wax painting on that unique surface. She even painted a base of encaustic gesso on them first, to make the colors pop. I'd never heard of such a thing!

Last but never least, Cecilio, from Denver, kept his tradition of clean and thoughtful cards.  I love that the little hole of the flower on the front shows itself on the inside of the card.

Remember that you can click on the photos to get better looks! Thank you to all who participated to make this swap the best yet! If you are a blog reader who would like to participate in the future, just contact me and I'll put your name on my list of invites for next year.