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Presidential Portraits

Posted by on Feb 19, 2018 in Craft, Travel | 4 comments

A new portrait of President Obama was unveiled at the National Portrait Gallery last week. It was met with mixed reviews.

Obama portrait unveiled

Critics compared the unconventional painting by Kehinde Wiley to portraits from the White House collection, implying that the new work – and, by extension, Obama himself – was less dignified or presidential than those that came before.

Washington portrait by Stuart

But it’s a flawed comparison. This is not his White House portrait. (Also? Judge presidents by their actions, not by artwork created of them.)

Nixon by Rockwell

There are two collections of portraits that include all (except the most recent) former U.S. Presidents: the 43 paintings in the White House and the more varied collection in the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery (NPG), which also includes sculptures and photographs.

Gerald Ford by Oliphant

The portraits in the White House are often more formal and official-looking than their NPG counterparts, especially in recent decades, when artwork has been veering away from tradition, widening the gap between the two collections.

Truman, Kennedy, Bush portraits from White House and NPG

Wiley’s painting has been installed in the National Portrait Gallery, where I’m sure it stands out as unique, but not out of place.

President Barack Obama by Kehinde Wiley


PS Obama’s portrait has been re-created on a cookie.  

Photos via the White House and National Portrait Gallery.

 

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Black + White Love #ColorStory

Posted by on Feb 14, 2018 in Craft, Travel | 0 comments

Red isn’t the only color of love.

The classic combination of black and white can also have a romantic feel.

You can see it in this month’s color story with elegant DIYs, destinations, art, interiors, and objects in black and white.

Mailboxes Venice

Branches

Stairs

1. Venice mailboxes 2. L’amour print 3. Printable geometric heart gift wrap 4. Boyce Thompson Arboretum 5. Black steps

 

Sandnes Norway Tote Bag

Black sesame cappuccino

inger sodergren ceramics

Bridge of Sighs Venice

Stay true

6. Sandnes, Norway manhole cover tote 7. Black sesame cappuccino 8. Ceramics by Inger Södergren 9. Bridge of Sighs, Venice 10. Stay True poster

 

Black Cloud by Carlos Amorales

DIY heart card

Barn

DIY wardrobe

Bee mine

11. Black Cloud (Nube Negra) detail by Carlos Amorales at Phoenix Art Museum 12. DIY eraser heart stamp 13. Windmill Winery, Florence, Arizona 14. Traditional bookbinding patterns 15. Minimal open wardrobe DIY 16. Bee Mine card

 

Peggy Guggenheim museum cafe in Venice Italy

Hand carved stamp

Nightstand

Thank you

17. Peggy Guggenheim Museum Café, Venice 18. Hand carved block printing stamp 19. Farmhouse in Woodend, Victoria (Australia) + rental cottage  20. Punkpost thank you card

 

Bear hugs to all of you! (Illustration by Daryl Hochi)

Amor bear hugs

 


Images via respective sites.

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Make a Difference with Things You Make

Posted by on Feb 1, 2018 in Craft | 2 comments

Heart cards

There are lots of ways to get crafty to do some good – regardless of your skill level!

Here are some DIY projects to make a difference.

 

 

Build a Little Free Library.

Make a place for a neighborhood book exchange! You can build it or repurpose a phone booth, mailbox, vintage bread warmer or other weatherproof container to house books in.

Organization(s):
Little Free Library

Good to know:

 

Hearts4vegas

Crochet/knit a chemo cap.

Help someone with hair loss due to cancer treatment feel more comfortable.

Organization(s):

Good to know:
Before making a cap to donate, check the charity’s guidelines on best yarns and patterns to use. Many of them offer free patterns on their sites!

 

Make a composting unit.

You can reduce trash by composting food waste and turning it into something that’s good for your garden.

Good to know:

 

 

Make a card…

…for a child in the hospital.

Caitlin’s Smiles distributes handmade cards and “bags of smiles” with arts and craft supplies to kids in hospitals. You can make cards, tote bags, or donate art supplies.

Organization(s):
Caitlin’s Smiles

…for a cancer patient.

Make blank cards that will be personalized and sent to people with a cancer diagnosis.

Organization(s):
Card Care Connection

…for a housebound senior citizen.

While there won’t be an official Meals on Wheels campaign like last year’s “Love Letters,” you can contact your local Meals on Wheels program to find out about creating cards.

Organization(s):
Meals on Wheels

…for your congressional representatives.

Postcards may currently be the most effective way to let Congress know what issues matter to you.

Good to know:

 

Make a blanket…

…for animal shelters (knit, crochet, sew, or tie).

You can knit, crochet, sew, or tie blankets for dogs and cats in shelters.

Organization(s):
Comfort for Critters

Good to know:

  • 20-inch square is the preferred size.
  • They have free patterns and blanket ideas!
  • You can drop blankets off at a local animal shelter or ship them to their Illinois headquarters.

 

…for NICU babies.

Knit or crochet neonatal baby blankets.

Organization(s):
Knots of Love

…for veterans.

Organization(s):

  • Operation Gratitude gives care packages to veterans, as well as currently deployed U.S. Troops, first responders, and military families. You can make blankets, cards, caps, cool ties, drawstring bags, and/or scarves.
  • Quilts of Valor awards patriotic quilts to thank veterans.

 

Hummingbird Feeder

For pollinators, make…

…a mason bee nesting spot.

Help save the bees! Solitary bees are great pollinators and don’t have painful stings.

Good to know:

 

…a bat house.

Bats not only help pollinate plants, they eat mosquitos and other pests. As forests are cut down, they have fewer safe places to raise their young.

Organization(s):
Bat Conservation International

…a hummingbird feeder.

Hummingbirds need a lot of calories every day! They can fuel up on nectar at feeders or flowers like honeysuckle.

Good to know:

 

Craft for a Fundraiser

If you sell items you’ve made, you can give the proceeds to whichever charity is meaningful to you. Cash is the most versatile donation.

Stamp metal bracelets.

One fundraiser craft idea is hand stamped bracelets. MyIntent (who I received a necklace from) now sells a Maker Kit, so you can make your own custom jewelry. One fundraiser selling hand-stamped bracelets brought in over $4,000 in 3 weeks!

UPDATE: Found a discount code, so I wanted to share! VDAY25 will get you 25% off a MyIntent Maker Kit.

Organization(s):
MyIntent.org

 

What else can we make to make a difference?

 


PS While some of these projects are U.S.-specific, hopefully, they’ll spark ideas for anywhere you are!

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This February Share Your #LocalArtLoves!

Posted by on Jan 29, 2018 in Craft, Travel | 0 comments

Let’s celebrate local art and artists!

BTA art by Bud Heiss

Since we had fun sharing Local Art Loves last year, I thought we could keep the challenge going throughout the month of February this time!

Local Art Loves

Just look for art in your community and share photos using the hashtag #LocalArtLoves on Twitter or Instagram. I’ll post some of your finds here on the site.

Keep an eye out for public art, local galleries, neighborhood art walks, and rotating art displays at coffee shops or libraries. You can also share favorite art spaces, street art, or your own work.

Round sculptures by Peter Skidd at Renee Taylor Gallery

Can’t wait to see some art from where you live!


First photo: Paintings by Bud Heiss on display at Boyce Thompson Arboretum.

Last photo: Round sculptures by Hidden in the Hills artist Peter Skidd at Renee Taylor Gallery, Sedona.




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Violet

Posted by on Jan 15, 2018 in Craft, Travel | 6 comments

Berries near piobocco

Since it’s the beginning of a new year, I thought I’d share some art, food, destination, and DIY ideas inspired by Pantone’s color of the year, Ultra Violet!

1. Berries, Le Marche, Italy. 2. Pantone Ultra Violet. 3. Chocolade Van Brugge, Scottsdale (photo: Stephanie Haworth). 4. Desert Botanical Garden, Phoenix.

 

Mari Orr art

5. “Victoria” painting by Mari Orr. 6. Photo transfer tutorial. 7. Ed Mell art for Riders of the Purple Sage. (Photo: Tim Trumble).

 

8. Yuma Garden Company’s colorful carrots. 9. Making Chive Flower Vinegar. 10. Lo & Sons O.G. Overnight Bag.

 

Resolution ornament

11. Chaparral sage, Tucson. 12. New Year’s time capsule DIY. 13. Let’s Be Better Humans campaign bus. 14. View from Sunset Point rest area near Black Canyon City, Arizona.

 

Finally, a cake decorated with actual fresh violets….

 

 


Photos via respective sites, except as noted.

 

 

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Antique Gold and Forest

Posted by on Dec 14, 2017 in Craft, Travel | 0 comments

Since I got some great feedback from my autumn and indigo color palette, I thought I’d make color-themed posts a regular thing.

Sunlight through pines at campground

Currently on my mind is the combination of vibrant greens (from kelly to forest) paired with softer golds – think mercury glass, champagne, tarnished jewelry, candlelight.

 

Cake table via Elizabeth Anne Designs (photo: Jacque Lynn Photo)

While this combination could go modern, I particularly love it as a complement to rustic decor. It looks fabulous with natural materials like birch bark, adding just enough sheen to make it all feel chic and festive.

Gold leaf on pinecone

For a woodsy vibe, you can bring in the classic evergreen boughs and pinecones or whatever’s growing outside your door. Twigs, olive branches, rosemary sprigs, eucalyptus leaves, berries, potted cacti, or mossy driftwood can all work great.

Rustic table

1. Campground in Pinetop-Lakeside, Arizona. 2. Woodland cakes with sled. 3. DIY gold pinecone garland. 4. Rustic elegant table.


 

Here are more ideas for places to visit, projects, products, and recipes in this palette.

Mercury glass ornaments

Gingerbread terrariums

Pinecone garland

Grönkålsallad with kale, oranges, and chèvre via My Lovely Things (photo: Jonas Lundberg).

5. Mercury glass ornaments. 6. Make gingerbread terrariums!. 7. DIY gold leaf pinecone garland. 8. Grönkålsallad – kale, orange, and chèvre salad.

 

Christmas cookies via Fork and Flower

9. Christmas cookie recipes. 10. Decorate wine glasses. (New Year’s Eve crafts.) 11. Sequin table runner. (Shop) 12. Homemade olive branch wreath.

 

Woodsy tablescape

Rainy window

Hanukkah gelt

Luminarias at Tucson Botanical Garden.

13. Woodland tablescape. 14. Rain drops. 15. DIY Hanukkah Gelt (chocolate coins). 16. Luminarias at Tucson Botanical Garden. (in Phoenix

 

DIY Branch Menorah

Ring wreath by Paper n Stitch blog

Gold circle garland by robayre
17. DIY Natural Branch Menorah. 18. How to make asymmetrical wreaths. 19. Gold circle garland. (Tutorial)

 

Spinach mushroom polenta.

Decorated cactus

20. Spinach mushroom polenta. 21. Holiday bar set-up. 22. Decorated cactus

 

I hope you enjoyed this taste of the holidays!

 


Each photo links to its source, except for 1. + 14., which were taken by me.

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