Big thank you to Aaron who was in from Oregon for two weeks – he picked out two of my pieces for his wife, came back the next day and requested one for his mother in law. What a great guy. Thanks Aaron, hope they like!
Many thanks to the people that braved the really beautiful weather and navigated their way to Booth 52 at Art & Soul this weekend. Cherylyn and I probably had more fun than we were supposed to.
I met some great people, was visited by friends and family, had repeat customers (!) and was overjoyed by all the touching (of my pieces) that went on in our tent. Thank you for visiting, for your interest and curiosity, for purchasing and for making the past few months of endless painting absolutely worth it!
As usual, I took a photograph as each bowl changed hands. Permission was granted by each individual (or guardian). As you will see, some people didn’t mind having their pictures taken, others were feeling a bit too sweaty – it was pretty hot.
Oh, I also had the good fortune of being placed directly across from the booth of Donna Marquardt, a stained glass artist who came down from Ripon, Wisconsin with her husband, a blacksmith. Her work was right up my alley and I wandered away from my own booth (sorry, Cherylyn) several times to admire what she brought. Think: found glass of any kind – soldered together and placed perfectly in a frames that she found in dumpsters or second hand stores. I believe I’m doing her a disservice here because I can’t adequately describe the amazingness of her work. She doesn’t have a website, but here’s her email if my lame attempt at a description has piqued your interest: marquartD@ripon.edu. We both loved what the other did and made a trade at the end of the show – I can’t stop looking at what I received from our barter. The picture is below.
Again, thanks everybody. It was a great couple of days!
See you soon!
Well hello there. I’ll be sharing a booth with my good friend Cherylyn of c-lyn studio. Come out and support local artists and downtown businesses, feel the pulse of life! ArtSpace will be giving studio tours too. Elgin, do you know how lucky you are? There’s some pretty great stuff happening in your neck of the woods.
Stop by and see us, we’d sure love to see you. Booth 52! In advance of visiting her in real life, visit Cherylyn at her website: http://www.clynstudio.blogspot.com/
I’ll be selling about twenty five new pieces, here’s a sampling:
Firstly, I’d like to take a minute to thank the friends, family and strangers that came to the McNeil Mansion and left with a bowl, ornament or magnet. Thank you! It feels so damn good to know that a little something I have worked on gets a chance at a brand new life in the world of someone else.
Generally, I take a picture as the bowl changes hands and begins its new chapter. It’s kind of difficult to do that at the McNeil Mansion, but I did manage to snap a few. As always, permission was granted by each person:
Here are a few new bowls I’m working on:
I’ll be at the Winter Market – Elgin, this Saturday from 8am-2pm, sharing a booth with my friend Cherylyn of c-lyn studio: http://www.clynstudio.com. Come visit us! We don’t bite.
Please support the vendors at the market this Saturday, and every Saturday through March. Enjoy a reprieve from the mall and buy something that was made in your neck of the woods.
I’ll post more pictures of current projects soon. In the meantime, you can find Winter Market information below:
Please come to the McNeil Mansion 12th Annual Holiday Open House. I will be bringing “up-cycled” bowls, glass balls and recycled glass magnets. This beautiful old mansion will be jammed with the work of local artisans. If the 11th annual open house is any indication, this is guaranteed to be a twinkly, joyful event.
November 4 – 6 and 11 – 13
10am – 5 pm
162 S. State St. (Hwy 31) in Elgin, IL. A short walk from the Metra stop.
I will be working both Sundays from 10 – 1. If you’re in the area please come visit!
Hope to see you.
On my last visit to Seattle I stopped by Bedrock Industries and bought bags and bags of glass. I was back in Woodstock for about two days before I cracked the bags open and got to magnet making. Here’s my fridge. Just a sample. I believe I made about 75 magnets in one afternoon – each made with love. I wonder what my fridge would look like if I lived right next to BI?
I have not touched this blog in months. I’ve been adjusting to a new job, a new state, new town, new reality in general. I know myself well. I predicted this: the pendulum swing. When I first arrived here I had no job and I painted every day and every night. I numbed out with painting. Eventually, I painted the desire to paint right out of me, but I called it back then and knew it was temporary. Of course, I do get freaked when it goes away because I’m not sure how long it will be gone for. I think I talked about this in an earlier post that referenced Patti Smith. When it’s in you, it always comes back.
I gave myself several months to get lost in the confusion and panic (and frequent catatonia) that comes with picking up your life at 37 and moving back to the place you left when you were 18. Then I reached a breaking point – the Jessica, it can go one of two ways here moment. A grip was gotten. Sure, I still lay in bed, or on the floor sometimes, my eyes as big as saucers, staring at the ceiling, immobilized. But the amount of time I spend doing that has lessened considerably. I am painting again and it is a drug. It’s not numbing me out this time around though, it’s calming me. My little acrylic Lorazepams. I can feel myself gently swinging back to center. I’ll post pictures soon.
I stayed in last night. Gone are the days when I walk down the street to a friend’s apartment to watch fireworks shoot from the Space Needle. But, here are the days when my new webcam gets set up and I join Skype!
Last year to ring in the New Year I walked two blocks from my place to the home of my friends John and Susan. We drank wine, played Celebrity, took in the fireworks from their expansive patio and watched R.Kelly’s (gross) Trapped in the Closet (so, so awesome). I have never laughed so hard. John and Susan have since moved just north of Seattle, out of their condo and into a home with a yard, and they were blessed with a son, McIntyre (Mac) Featherstone, in early December.
Two years ago I was in San Francisco, bringing in the new year with my friends Michelle and Kyle in Michelle’s Tenderloin apartment. Very cozy and mellow. I knit and drank beer by candlelight, Michelle painted and Kyle told stories.
Michelle and I spoke for a long time - about home, love, creativity and whether to call this year “two thousand eleven” or “twenty eleven” – I am of the mind that “twenty eleven” sounds too much like abbreviated texting language - LOL, TTYL or an emodicon – and that business makes me absolutely bristle. I prefer that we take the time to say the words, write the words. Sure, I never said, “Happy New Year! I can’t believe it’s one thousand, nine hundred ninety four!” But these days, taking an extra fraction of a second to say “two thousand eleven” means much more than it did back then. At least to me.
While I have you here, if you’ve got the time please check out Michelle’s art. When she’s not working in her Astoria home studio, she’s reading tarot or walking the streets of New York taking amazing photographs.
I have taken a break from painting during the holidays. For two months it was pretty much all I did and I was beginning to lose zest. Michelle reminded me that this is how it is – fever and obsession have to give way to rest, and then naturally, fever and obsession take over again. I used to panic about the rest phase when I was younger. Oh, no! I’m not really an artist. If I were I’d never want to stop, I’d always have ideas. About a year ago I stopped freaking out about it entirely.
Last February I had the good fortune of seeing Patti Smith. She read from her memoir, gave a brief musical performance and answered questions from a salivating Seattle audience. First off, I want to be her – with my own touches of course, but dear god this woman is amazing. You know she won the National Book Award recently - with her memoir, the first book she had ever written, at 64. I have never seen a person so obviously comfortable with who they are. As honest and authenic as I have always believed myself to be, I realized I have a lot of work to do. I can’t explain it, but you’ll know what I’m talking about if you ever get the chance to share a room with her. Anyway, someone in the audience asked her what she did when she felt stuck creatively. Smith said that a long time ago she used to fall into a panic – “That’s it, I’m done. That’s all I had in me.” But time after time it always came back. She finally realized that if it’s in there, it will always be – even if years pass between creative endeavors. What a liberating realization. She went on to say that these days, when she seeks inspiration, she fills a big thermos with coffee and walks along the beach.
I don’t know if I’m making any sense, I feel like I’m all over the place. But to summarize: so much can change in a year, technology is beautiful and strange, my friend Michelle is an amazing artist, Patti Smith is a personal hero, creativity is a boomerang.
I won’t be walking along a beach anytime soon, but I’m sure I’ll pack a thermos of coffee for my train ride to the city for this bit of inspiration:
The work of Lori Nix at Chicago’s Catherine Edelman Gallery from January 7 to February 26, 2011.
Thanks to everyone who braved the snow last week to come to the first of (hopefully) many winter market Saturdays at the Haight building in Elgin.
As a new arrival in Elgin who’s still working on building community, the universe was really providing for me last Saturday. I met countless positive, silly, open-hearted, open-minded, dynamic locals and I left the market believing that Elgin may be a good place to hang my hat for a while.
I received a lot of positive feedback about my bowls. Thank you! Many bowls were touched, quizzical looks were exchanged. Some of you looked at me like I may be a little crazy, two of you thought my dotted bowls resembled a test for color blindness. I love this! See below.
Thanks to all the strangers out there that took a few minutes out of their hectic holiday lives to talk to little old me, and to those who thought it would be a good idea to purchase something that I had made. You will never know how much that means to me.
I tried my best not to seem creepy while asking bowl-buyers if they wouldn’t mind being photographed with the bowl they bought for the purpose of posting it here. What great sports! Permission granted by every last one!
Again, thanks to everyone for stopping by.
The weather is supposed to be much better this weekend, so if you’re in this neck of the woods try to pop into the market. Saturday, December 11th, from 10-5 at The Haight. 166 Symphony Way, Elgin. This week there will be a $1 entrance fee for adults 18 and up.
Oh, and last week among all the other goods, the market offered free wine tastings and massage! The massage booth was right across from mine and those women worked hard and sent a bunch of people on their merry way, certainly more relaxed than they were when they arrived. My dad stopped by and indulged in a massage and he said it was great. No guarantees, but my fingers are crossed that wine and massage will be offered again.
Almost forgot, I was fortunate enough to neighbor a booth run by two charming veterans who were at the market raising funds for an organization in Dundee that sends cookies and other delights to troops around the world. Nice! They need your help.
If you have Facebook, please visit the Elgin’s Urban Eden page for more information about this incredibly exciting sustainability project emerging in your very own backyard.
Hope to see you Saturday. I’ll be bringing bowls, ornaments, magnets and mosaics. Everything I make (sans ornaments) comes from recycled/reclaimed materials.
Take care and bundle up!