Wednesday, May 24, 2023

Out and About in the 'Boro

I don't know if people really call our town, 'the 'Boro', but I like the ring.  My 'regional' collages have a fare share of  'hometown' favorites and these are the latest.

Willy's Ice Cream is a long time popular landmark.  Founded in 1995, it occupies a corner of a shopping center parking lot, closes for the winter and has a wonderful retro feel. And yes, the ice cream is great.


Willy's Ice Cream - Waynesboro series


This house has caught my eye before, but recently while driving by, the light was on it just so and I said to my husband, 'Stop the car! Pull over!' and I jumped out and got some shots.

White House on Main - Waynesboro Series

Till another time.


Saturday, May 13, 2023

Painting It Orange with Jess

I've featured Jess in more than a few of my collages; usually inspired by interesting and wonderful photos she herself posts.  Jess is an artist and owns a nifty shop and studio called Paint It Orange.  We've been talking about a little upcoming collaboration, so I've been looking at images of Orange, VA

Jess was indeed working on her car in this photo with the wrench, but more automobiles joined the party.

Auto-Matic Jess collage


Current collaged travels to Orange...

On Main Street collage - Orange, VA

Alices At Mayhurst collage - Orange, VA

Paint It Orange collage - Orange, VA

I lived in Orange in the mid-70's to '80's with my former husband, Perry.  Jess' father, Bill - also an artist - was  a good friend of ours and grew up in Orange. Bill and Perry still do all sorts of projects together.  Bill and his wife Nancy are part of the Rockfish Gallery.  Here is a favorite self-portrait of Bill, which lives in my front hall.


Self-Portrait - Bill Walters


Till next time.



Saturday, May 6, 2023

Fish and Frida

These two collages began with a single moment - coming upon a quote and having an image appear in a news stream.

I laughed out loud when I saw the bumper sticker- 'fish control my brain'.  I assume it is related to the actual act of fishing, as it was on a car in the parking lot by our river walk, but it just stayed with me.  Yes, fish controlled my brain.

Fish Control My Brain collage

I hadn't seen this particular image of Frida Kahlo before and it truly spoke to me. The spacious window felt a perfect expansive backdrop to the concentration of  her while painting, while the aged brick wall, seemed a perfect edgy foil to her things. 

In 2012, Frida's closet was opened after 58 years. Her husband Deigo Rivera had it locked upon her death.  An exhibit was mounted at Frida's home, Casa Asul - the Blue House, and now the Frida Kahlo museum.  Like so many, Frida is an icon of mine and a regular theme and I've used items from 'the closet' in other collages.

Frida Painting Among Her Things collage 

Till another time.

Wednesday, April 26, 2023

Black and White and Noir

'Black and White' emerged from a theme prompt for our monthly Members' gallery shows at Shenandoah Valley Arts Center, SVAC.  It's fun to sometimes work with an external prompt. Typically my 'prompts' may come from a single image that attracts me or an emotion or situation which goes in search of images; so an outside prompt sends me down it's own path.


Black and White Collage


Here, the core image of a pensive Bette Davis led the way to this collage.  The prominent male figure is another 1940's era star, Leslie Howard. I colorized and altered both figures from the original black and white photos.  Retro film and images are always a vivid part of my mind's collective.

Dark Night Bette

Till next time.

Tuesday, April 11, 2023


It's a glorious Spring day here.  Until now we still have had cold nights, cool mornings and then finally, a warm afternoon.  But today, the day blossomed warm and has been bright throughout.  I don't have a new collage to share, but these two evoke Spring to me.

Nix is a Crow-Hare fairy.  She holds the energy of new beginnings and renewal.

Spring - Nix-Crow Hare Fairy

This collage is perhaps not Spring per se, but Compassion and Endurance are two qualities to bring forth at the time of flowers and trees coming into bloom and new seeds planted.

Spring - Compassion and Endurance

Many of my collages carry and optimistic feel to them. I want to keep my eye turned to a lighter element. The collages of  'place' are filled with associative images, some clear in their association and others not, but often having a fun element within them. I like the 'fun' of adding elements that don't belong - a lime on a roof or a donut in the street. 

But I've noticed there are times the events, the issues, in the world press on me deeply and my creative eye stops; does not turn to brightness nor does it explore the world issues as it overwhelms. So today from that place, I took a breath and  remembered Spring.

Till next time.


Tuesday, March 21, 2023

Birthday Totems and Fond Memories

March is my annual birthday collage time.  I have certain themes and totems that appear in many of these birthday collages, but naturally, it's always a different mix. Totems are evocative and perhaps some of these will speak to and for you as well.

Birthday Totems Collage

My cousin Marianne sent me a 1950's photo of our Uncle Carmen with her, my sister and I and cousin Marguerite. I don't know exactly where or when this was taken. The saturated colors were in the original photos.  I often include incongruous elements in my work, but the train here actually has meaning to me, as Uncle Carmen had a large model train layout in his basement. 

Uncle Carmen was my favorite uncle; I always felt close to him. It was interesting working on this collage, as all the feelings of closeness and tenderness would flow, but very few actual memories of events or places with him. I'll happily embrace the feelings sans memories.

Uncle Carmen and The Girls collage

    Till another time.

Thursday, March 2, 2023

Cedar Key Adeiu! Leaving you with a visit to the Wabi Sabi Cottage and the Retro Beach Babes Bungalow

Just a few more days of our lovely stay in Cedar Key.  Quite a bit more crowded than other years when we came in January, but more abundant birds and flowers.  Rhododendron were blooming everywhere this week. 

I haven't captured every interesting cottage, shop or building here yet, and continue to be inspired by the vintage coastal architecture.  Some of my collages from the past, primarily businesses, are now 'historic'; as they are no longer here and their buildings revamped.

Wabi Sabi cottage has kept it's aged gray cedar siding and landscape, with a  touch of whimsy in the flower pot bicycle basket.  The Japanese term "Wabi Sabi' refers to an aesthetic concept that finds beauty and serenity in objects, landscapes, designs, etc., that are simple and imperfect.  My amplified color and image abundant aesthetic may not be Wabi Sabi per se, but I think they're having a fun mash-up.

Wabi Sabi Cottage collage - Cedar Key


This purple, yellow and green cottage is as almost as vibrant as in the collage, where I have amplified the colors some.  It echoed for me the colors of my collection of vintage, retro 'beach babes'; a retro term for their male counterparts, 'beach bums'. The colorful bungalow is a perfect gathering place for the them. 

Retro Beach Babes Bungalow collage - Cedar Key

 If you follow my blog, I hope you've enjoyed traveling with me.  Next post sometime from somewhere about something. See you then.



Sunday, February 26, 2023

Cedar Key - Bayou Time!

Cedar Key is indeed a key, an island;  a little corner of Florida on the West Coast that juts out into the Gulf of Mexico.  There are also many inlets, canals and as I like to call them, bayous.

The photos these two collages are based on were taken from both sides of the bridge crossing the Lewis Pass Canal and some of the buildings house clam 'races', where seed clams are raised.  Cedar Key is famous for its clams.

It also became apparent that Pink and Yellow Bayou have decided that they would work very well as a side-by-side pair when they're in mood and don't want to just be the individuals they are.

Pink Bayou collage - Cedar Key


Yellow Bayou collage - Cedar Key

By the way,
Sheila Baby and the yellow boat are Cedar Key residents too.  Sheila has a sister boat, Baby Cakes, who has appeared in other collages.

Our visit is coming to an end here. I have some images that caught my eye, so perhaps another post is upcoming.




Tuesday, February 21, 2023

More Cedar Key-ing

If you follow my blog, you may have noticed I don't post frequently - except during these travel times.  It's interesting working with a focused frame, as it were, using photos from my travels as the anchor of each collage. I call these my 'regional collages'.  Mid-afternoons have become the 'back at the ranch' time from our meanderings and when I collage.  

My friend Perry Fitzhugh once said to me that he thought he would enjoy working for Sesame Street, where you have to be creative with simple themes, like numbers, letters and concepts like up and down and have to stay within that focus. I find there is a different creative feeling to work within the frame of the trip. And at home, I don't have the openness to spend every afternoon at the collage pallet.  Travel bonus!

The background building in this collage is indeed vintage and is all gray weathered wood. It has been abandoned for many years and the only unused building on 2nd Street, the main street here. At one point, many little found-art assemblages were nailed to the walls, but this year they are mostly gone with a few new drawings on the walls. 


Here vintage people, with vintage-inspired Mr. Pearl, appreciate Old Florida Cedar Key.

Vintage Cedar Key collage - Cedar Key

I've always liked this funky cottage, with a yard full of Flamingos and the doll who lives on the porch. 

Dolly House Cottage  collage - Cedar Key
And truly, how could one pass up using this chicken shorts gal in a collage. Not me, for sure.

Till next time.

Wednesday, February 15, 2023

Cedar Key Florida 2023 ~ Kayaks, Century Plants and Flamingos

 Kayaking is a popular thing here and these colorful boats can be seen on the beach, in backyards and on tops of cars.  


Those Kayak Girls collage - Cedar Key

 Huge Century Plants are also in abundance.

Among the Century Plants collage - Cedar Key

But what is in most abundance are the birds, and apparently mating season is coming, so the flocks are gathering. Pelicans, Ibis, Herons, Doves and the most unique and wonderful Roseate Spoonbills. Flamingos are very prevalent too, but they are of the plastic lawn ornament variety.

Flamingo Hotel collage - Cedar Key

Now for more roaming out and about.