Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Still Available

I think these paintings are available at the gallery for $450 a piece. Two of them are about listening, one about faith and two about sharing light.
Shilo runs the gallery, which isn't a little job. She's very nice and her artwork is splendid, especially her cork board paintings.

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Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Our Stories

What I Wish For You
 After reading every email I was sent for this project, several times, then considering what I thought were the most important parts of each story and then figuring out how to illustrate those ideas with symbols, I feel a little connection to each of the people who sent the stories. I suppose each of those stories are now connected to my story a little bit, and world seems a smaller and people seem more alike than different.

In the painting above, I wanted to give the story teller something. I wanted to give her something that saved me, so I painted about it. I hope she likes it.

I love it when I get to put faces and families with stories. Some of the stories I've made ExVotos for over the past couple of years were connected without me knowing it. That's pretty cool. .

I get to hear stories that are amazing and inspiring. So thank you again to all of you who shared your stories with me.
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Thursday, June 16, 2011

Now that the paintings are finished, I've had a little time to sit with them. Each one is someone's story and packs emotion. As a group, that emotion is multiplied.
Nina took some great photos of the paintings. Thanks Nina

I Folded Paper and Waited

While waiting to adopt our 4th daughter I would fold an origami paper crane each day. Little did I know it would be a 3 year wait! I folded each day, sometimes leaving it in a doctors office, a neighbors mailbox or just collecting on my counter until it was covered in hundreds of colorful cranes.
It became a symbol to me of waiting with joy and patience. There was something so calming in the process of folding that lovely piece of paper and watching it transform into a majestic crane. It gave me great pleasure. The process is what saves us!
There is a red oriental basket sitting by my front door that is full of these cranes. Every Christmas I pull out a garland of them and hang them up and we usually can put them all over a small tree too!
Sometimes my little Ruby will get one out of the basket and say, "you made these while you waited to get me in China!"
I smile and tell her, "yes!"
Perhaps someday in a time of questioning, in a time when she needs saving, she will reflect on these cranes and feel the same peace and joy. They might help her to know how present she was in our family, even before she was born and how much we yearned for and wanted her!

I love not only this mother's love for her baby, but how she developed the symbol of the crane as a physical reminder of a history of emotion, like a painting can do.

Thank you Kristi for letting me post your story!


The home stretch is sometimes the toughest with all the little fixes, and details. I ended up working outside due to amount of toxic chemicals I used in finishing-up these paintings; Liquin, Crackle and Damar Varnish. It was lovely to work out in the fresh air with kittens frolicking about. I did have to pick a few bugs and a lot of leaves off of the paintings.

The show opens tomorrow night at Kayo Gallery in SLC. I'm excited to share the show with Dan Barney. I love his pieces and as usual, I want to keep all of them.

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Wednesday, June 8, 2011

The images are designed and the paintings are laid in. Now magical little painting moments start to happen. Some of those moments happen by accident, and some after I stare at the painting until it I see what it needs. I'm doing a lot of staring.
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Getting Closer

Alex left a comment on the post below that says, "twelve more days until this show opens," which threw me into a little frenzy. (Thank you Alex because I needed a push.) Not only do I want to paint the most beautiful paintings for each story, but I have a few ideas of my own I really want to paint.

With luck I'll have everything nearly finished by this weekend. Then at the beginning of next week I'll photograph the images, and send them to everyone who sent me stories.
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Friday, June 3, 2011

Will God or someone else give me the strength to breathe the breath of prayer and mourning into my paintings, the breath of prayer for redemption and resurrection?-Marc Chagall
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Wednesday, May 18, 2011


For the last couple of weeks,I've been working on drawings, trying to translate these stories into symbols. Some come easily, I can see it. I started painting a couple of those. I so love to get lost in painting.

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Monday, April 25, 2011

Making Meaning

Let me listen to me and not to them.
-Gertrude Stein

I admire people who make meaning from experience. I admire people who choose learning instead of defeat. I admire people who give credit to others. I so enjoy the act of paying tribute to all of these things.

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Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Water Saves Her

I just happened to be painting a series of paintings for the Art Access plates show all about water when I got this email from poetic Kate about what saves her...

Water. When the whirlwind of my thoughts sucks me out of my body and into the air, when I am fevered and fire-brained and anxious, when I am lost, I go to the water, and it brings me home. Back into my body. Back to earth. Back to the self that lives each day with gratitude and wonder.
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Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Your Stories

The stories I have received so far have caught me a little off guard. Maybe it's honesty, vulnerability and depth which people have shared that are in contrast to the interactions in of my everyday life. These stories make me want to look closer at the people around me and to love everyone I meet a little more.
Thank you so much to those of you who have shared. And to those of you who want it.
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Monday, April 18, 2011

What Saved Me

I want to use this blog as a space to document a new body of work. I originally posted about this project on my other blog,

Invitation for Collaboration

I heard a presentation by Jana Napoli this last week. In her lecture she said something about doing her artwork was what saved her. Dan Barney and I talked about that idea, about what saves us. I could give testimony to how painting saves me. I can't imagine my life without painting. I also thought about knitting. I thought about how when at one time in my life, when my heart was knotted up, I knit with red yarn. As I knit, the rhythm and repetition untangled my heart. Knitting saved me. In the winter when the days are short and grey, I cut paper flowers. Cutting flowers saves me.

I've been thinking about doing a series of exvotos for an upcoming show that Dan and I are having at Kayo Gallery in Salt Lake in June. I want to paint stories about being saved.

ExVoto means 'votive offering.' They are personal stories, hung in public to share and inspire. They are little tin paintings depicting stories, explaining why the giver is giving thanks.

If you have a story about What Saved You, that needs to be painted, send it to me at preferably by May 6.