Tuesday, November 15, 2022

Fall, Yellow, the Joans and Thankfulness

Today is a very crisp Fall day and here, the leaves of color are almost gone.  But it was a very vibrant Fall indeed, which inspired this collage.  Here we have one of my fairy creatures, Nix - the Crow-Hare fairy speaking as Fall.  You've seen her before as Spring.

Mythical beings often show up in my work.  I feel the presence of  Other.  Archetypal images populate most of my collages, from my point of view.  Retro images, retro people,people of different looks and styles, architecture, things and so forth, always carry a wider meaning than the image itself.  At least that is the feeling for me as I am drawn to them and find the juxtapositions that speak to me.

Fall - Nix, Crow-Hare Fairy collage

These two collages were a surprise to me.  After I recovered from a recent surgery, I found them in a folder labeled 'Working Collage', patiently waiting to complete, as I had forgotten them.

The very early, late 1920's image of Joan Crawford was the first image that caught my eye.  But we travel in these images up to the present day, with Tami Neilson rocking her retro look.

Retro Joans Collage


The fantastic yellow gown anchored this piece, joined, again,  by women of various eras.

Yellow Mayfair Collage


And Fall closes with Thanksgiving.  Whatever your feelings about the heritage of this holiday, I like to embrace it in its fullest spirit - a day of gathering and anchoring in thankfulness.  Why not?  

Thanksgiving - Mindful Gratitude Collage

Till next time.

Monday, October 31, 2022


I used to really celebrate Halloween, with costume fun and parties.  Helping my child find or make the perfect costume and all the Trick or Treaters at the door. Not so much these days, but I can still explore those oook-spooky  and Between the Realms themes in collage.

 My friend Jess, often my muse, is thoroughly enjoying the Halloween season and she is the inspiration of this collage.  

Halloween Hostess collage


Not specifically Halloween, but certainly oooky spooky.

I Still Repeat The Things You Said  collage


And for that Between the Realms aspect...

Ascension collage


and they even provide a sign to show the way.  But a decal is required!



Till next time.

Wednesday, August 10, 2022

Be tender with yourself

One of the fun things with collage is how images just appear in your sphere.  You're always on the lookout for them and they always find you.  It makes a nice alive element in life.

Lately an array of images of particularly interesting people have come into my world and I'm populating my collages with them.  Sometimes it is challenging to be different and I thought this message was timely. 


Be Tender collage     


My Anonymous Content collage series always begin with images that just grabbed my attention that day.  It's a free vibe of what may enter the space.  Sometimes themes emerge and a title with it.  This Anonymous collage ended up with a preponderance of blue.

Anonymous Content Blue collage



A vintage photo of classic Main Street where I live showed up, complete with retro cars and people. Alterations were required! The 5&10 and CocaCola soda fountain are long gone.

Retro Main Street collage


I was so taken by this vibrant woman in yellow that I had to make this collage just for me.  It is derived from Counterpoint, a painting I saw on Antiques Road Show.  The artist is Bernard Goss and the owner's mother knew him.  The appraiser said the 1954  painting had some controversy in the title and subject, as it showed an African-American pianist and Caucasian dancer performing together. Goss was a Chicago-area artist who was active during the WPA. He was a member of the important South Side Community Art Center.

Interestingly, this painting does not appear on any sites I found that included Goss' paintings.  I assume the owner has kept it in private hands.  I did a screen-shot to capture the image.  I have my own Chicago connection, having lived there for seven years when I was young.  The background is an edited vintage postcard of the Wrigley Building.

Counterpoint collage - Homage to Bernard Goss


Till next time.

Tuesday, July 19, 2022

Birds of Paradise to Cozmic Con

I came across a trove of vintage gowns in my images, from the 30's to mid-50's, so naturally I began to edit and amplify them.  Eventually one green one found it's way into my collage canvas and we were off. The wonderful core green figure with an apple was actually labeled 'Who Am I?' and eventually our man in yellow became a highlight.  The vintage floral background with bird gave the title.


Birds of Paradise Collage


This just-for-fun collage was inspired by a photo my friend Jess posted of her and her children at a Comic Con event.  The background is mostly just as it is in the original photo, with some edits.  The costumes are all theirs, with a bit of amplification.  Donuts and fruit bonus additions.

Cozmic Con Jess collage

Came across this fantastic vintage Ferrangamo shoe. Our 1928 Photoplay cover girl is a perfect match, along with her glamorous friend, meeting up at the bar of the Hotel Mayfair.

Ferrangamo 1928 collage

Till next time.

Saturday, June 4, 2022

Murals and Mid-Century Modern Meet-Up

Two of my favorite things ~ street art murals and mid-century design!  Always catches my attention and always inspiring.  It's quite fun discovering what images will accompany the main image or gather together at random [well, seemingly random as there is always a 'vibe' pulling things together.]

The mural, on what was once a ice plant and is now boarded up, is a Waynesboro, VA landmark.  She is Kaiya With Tulips by Nils Westergard, a Belgian-American artist and film maker based in Richmond, VA.  Kaiya is also quite well known in wider circles, as it was voted #1 on the Top 100 Urban Art 2019 list by Streetart360   My morning walk on the Greenway takes me past her everyday and I regard her with great affection.

Kaiya of Waynesboro collage

The Mid-century Modern house in the collage was not the inspiration of the collage.  My ongoing muse, Jess, posted a photo of herself in what I deemed as echoing mid-century sensibility and I was inspirted to place her and her dog in the mid-century setting.  

Mid-Century Jess collage

Monday, May 2, 2022

Happy Birthday! Happy Spring! White on White!

Our time away was great, but being home is as they say,  it's own kind of wonderful. Many things to attend to to get back in the groove, but happy to be here.

Each year I do my own birthday collage and one of my gifts to myself is that I compile an annual book of my collages and cards.  Both are fun to do and it's always interesting to see what is revealed in hindsight.

e birthday 2022 collage 

Octopi are often an element in my collage and I often use octopi hair on 'avatars' of myself.  This collage was almost finished, when my husband gave me for my birthday an amazing replica of an ancient Minoan pot - famous for their Octopi imagery-  produced by a museum in Greece.  It was the perfect finishing element of the collage.

Crows are another element I often use and I consider the Crow a menaingful totem in my life. But at an earlier time, when I was doing work with Wendy Ashley, an astrologer who anchored her work in mythology, she saw the Hare or Rabbit as a totem.  In some myths, the Hare is seen as the messenger between realms, moving by moonlight between the human world and the Otherworld.  Recently I was moved to add rabbits to some collages.  So I am welcoming Hare into the present.

The idea of this collage came to me in a dream - a Crow-Hare icon.  As she emerged, I felt she was in the fae or fairy realm and her name, Nix,  popped up as I completed the collage.  She anchors Hare, who is the stronger and more wild rabbit and Crow.  Ironically, I completed her on Easter, which I see as linked to the ancient goddess of Spring, Eostre.  

The eggs are Ukranian 'Pysanka' eggs, a tradition going back prior to Christianity.  The eggs are meant as memories or good wishes, prayers. 'Pysanka' means to write upon, and the designs are drawn or painted with wax and then dyed.  I was really drawn to the one on the upper left with the golden symbol. I looked it up and it represented Freedom, so appropos at this time.

Spring - Nix the Crow-Hare Fairy collage

Sometimes themes appear from circumstance.  'White on White' was inspired by the members gallery theme for May at SVAC - the Shenandoah Valley Arts Center.   The background image, the Heritage On Main  restaurant, had apparently recently been painted white and I noticed it just as I was thinking about a white-themed collage.  It's always nice when the Multiverse collaborates with you.  There are some puns on white in this little grouping and some surprise players.  The happy couple are Jimmy and Rosalyn Carter on their wedding day in 1946.

Till next time. 

Thursday, February 24, 2022

Messages, I Love You and The Sentient Bean

Well, our Winter travels are coming to an end and soon we'll head north, leaving sunny Savannah.  We're totally hooked on our new Victorian East neighborhood and hope to return to it and the very same rental next year. Can't beat staying in a renovated Victorian with a wrap-around porch and a garden to boot!

The wall and sign that inspired 'Private Parking Message' was along our daily route and always caught my eye, as new additions would pop up regularly.  I took liberty with some of the placements and sizing, but each message is indeed on the wall.

Private Parking Message - Savannah

The lovely old-school marquee of the Savannah Theater has inspired collage during our stays here over the years. You can see my gut response to the title in the strong text image. Our vibrant woman is wearing her favorite Marvel characters dress.
I love you. You're Perfect. Now Change. collage - Savannah

We were having breakfast in the Sentient Bean, our favorite local coffee place, when I looked up, saw the counter and background and said that is a great image and so it became the basis of my last collage this trip.  Crows are a welcome element in any of my collages.

Sentient Bean - Savannah

Follow-up!  I walked past the mural that was beginning that I used in an earlier collage and it's complete!  Super!

We've spent a lot of time enjoying Forsythe Park, which is quite nearby.  I had lovely conversations with bought some prints from two Forsythe vendors.

Phil Musen does these whimsical prints.  I love his sensibility and colors and he was a pleasure to chat with.  I think this one will be a great addition to my kitchen.

Hot Dog Cats by Phil Musen

Michelle A Stafford captures Forsythe Park and creates wonderful mystical women, magical animals and more.  This one really spoke to me. We had a great conversation and discovered that we both had lived in Philadelphia.

Digital Synthesis by Michelle A Stafford

Our Winter Trips are always renewing and refreshing and this one, especially so.  I find there is a great verve to having the sense of place as an anchor to my collages.  Thanks for traveling with me.

Sunday, February 20, 2022

Cuban Window Cafe and a Cargo Ship Meet Pabst Blue Ribbon With a New Mural

While Savannah is most known for it's beautiful historical and Victorian architecture, you'll find other things to catch your eye.

I read about the Cuban Window Cafe before we arrived in the Savannah in the  'Eat It and Like It' blog by Jesse Blanco.  Check out his Cuban Window review here.  We were very delighted to find this little gem was quite near where we are staying.  Carry-out traditional Cuban Sandwiches were our first meal in Savannah.  Since then, we've enjoyed their extensive menu often, and have new favorites in Guava Pastelitos, Papa Rellena and Empanadas Cuban-style. Everyone who works there are just terrific and working hard to keep you happy - all in a funky vibe that I love.

Cuban Window on Abercorn - Savannah

Savannah is one of the major cargo ship ports in the country.  It is quite impressive to stand on the River Walk and have one of these behemoths glide by right in front of you. Catching sight of the ships is one of my husband's favorite Savannah things. The yellow teacups are a huge sculpture that is on the River Walk in the new renovated power plant area, Plant Riverside.  By the way, check out the JW Mariott lobby on the Plant Riverside website.  It houses the most glorious natural crystals collection, in sizes I have never seen before.

Savannah River Cargo

Well, I didn't drink PBR or go bowling, but I did love the building and jaunty air of Moodrights on Abercorn Street, where you can do both those things - Duckpin bowling to be exact.   Pool and Bingo too!  I think my retro characters would feel right at home at Moodrights.

Pabst Blue Ribbon Moodrights - Savannah

There is a lot of wall art and murals in the city and I thought it rather cool to come upon one at the beginning of the venture.  I decided my artsy style  people would appreciate it fully. SCAD - Savannah Collage of Art & Design - offers many fashion design programs, and I am often taken by the unique stylings people wear.

Mural Beginnings on Bull Street - Savannah

Savannah continues to be one of my most favorite cities and places to be.

Monday, February 14, 2022

Savannah Victoriana

We're staying in the Victorian District of Savannah and the abundancy of these lovely homes is amazing. Not surprisingly, Savannah puts a lot of effort in restoring and preserving their historic properties and organizations like SCAD and the Historic Savannah Foundation work toward this goal.  Like other cities, there was a time when people didn't recognize the value of  the past and 'old' and significant buildings were destroyed. As often happens, the spark of one person and then a core of people worked to rectify the situation. Check out the story of Anna Colquitt Hunter.

Artistically, I have found it interesting working with the Victorians, as they hold a very strong, defined energy and some elements just don't seem to work well with the central image and I find I must let the building itself lead the way.  Naturally.

East Park Avenue didn't mind hosting our Doc Martin girl, but maybe it's all that tulle that was the right vibe.

East Park Avenue Victoriana - Savannah

Amethyst Garden is indeed that vivid shade of purple - a bit amplified  here- and once again, my friend Deb Booth provided the perfect enhancement, the lovely purple Lotus flower.

Amethyst Garden on Hull Street - Savannah

This 'wedding cake' white Victorian was the most demanding in which elements were acceptable, including being in a vertical format.  White was totally the theme but after many iterations, the red balloon was accepted.

White House on Hall - Savannah

And in the Victorian tradition,


Monday, February 7, 2022

Patsy Cline in Savannah

While in Cedar Key, we met up with some friends and Mary took pictures of a little robot in the restaurant and while we walked along.  Turns out, the robot was a favorite toy of her grandson and Mary took it with her to send photos to him on her travels.  Mary's little photo traveler was inspiring.

For years I have had a button of Patsy Cline on my travel purse and did a Patsy-inspired collage in Savannah in the past and decided my altered image of Patsy would be a perfect photo traveler.  I found Fabulous Fotoforms online and soon enough my laminated, laser cut lovely Patsy Cline met up with me in Savannah.

In 2018 there was a  show called ''Always Patsy Cline' at the Savannah Theatre, which inspired this collage.  I used Mz Patsy in some other collages as well.

Always Patsy - Savannah 2018

The original Patsy image is from an album cover, I believe, and the microphone stand said 'Grand Old Opry'.

Turns out,  Traveler Patsy gets a bit lost in larger backgrounds, so I've taken to doing little 'set ups' of favorite places.

  Patsy Cline arrives at the Fed Ex office

Patsy on the Savannah River Walk

Patsy at The Sentient Bean coffee shop.  The trophy is the table marker for the servers.

           Patsy in the E.Shaver Book Store

Patsy in the Garden of the SCAD Museum of Art -
Savannah Collage of Art and Design


 Patsy at PJ's Thai restaurant. Our favorite and the best Lime Chicken ever.


Saturday, February 5, 2022

Savannah 2022

 It's so nice to be in Savannah once again.  It's a favorite city of ours; vibrant but filled with nature and open space in the many parks and squares of the historic districts.  This year we are in the Victorian District at the south end of Savannah's well known Forsythe Park -  very residential and quite a way from the busy river front tourist areas.  

A totally walkable city, the car stays parked except for a trek to the ocean at Tybee Beach. The architecture is always engaging and as usual my collages are built on places that catch my eye.

We pass Original Skin Tattoo often and I love their attitude as well as their building.

Original Skin Tattoos - Savannah

Although I often amplify colors, the twin houses here are the actual colors, tweaked just a bit and yes, they are side-by-side.  Many of the homes in the Victorian area are in vibrant colors or with vibrant trim and details.

Vintage Twins - Savannah

I found the wonderful little dog randomly on the web, but a Google image-search, showed that she is the work of UK artist, Annie Montgomerie.

Amidst the lovely colors and warm brick of the Savannah landscape, there are faded ghosts as well.

Greyed Ghost House - Savannah

Friday, January 28, 2022

Artists, Donuts and Mermaids in Cedar Key

Our Cedar Key stay is coming to a close and even though we've been here awhile, it still feels too short.

A tiny town that sports two art galleries is a special place.  The Cedar Keyhole Artist Co-Op  was established in 1977 and continues to thrive.

Co-Op Artistry ~ Cedar Key

You can find quite a few lovely Victorian-style homes in Cedar Key, with their 'gingerbread' trim and sometimes vivid accent colors, like this 2nd Street beauty.  Although bright yellow cakes may not be typical, cats abound on the key.

Donut, Coffee & Cake on 2nd Street ~ Cedar Key

We spend most of our time on walk-abouts through town.  I had a lovely conversation with the owner of Blue House, which she described as always a 'work in progress'.  All the plant features and house/yard art are there, albeit 'adjusted' a bit.  She told me she discovered Cedar Key from a Jimmy Buffet song which mentions going down to Cedar Key and then a series of mysteries set in Cedar Key - which I myself read the first year we stayed here.

689 Blue House ~ Cedar Key

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