10

Simple Pleasures

I walked outside this morning and was hit by a COOL breeze. Ahh, the simple pleasures. It has been extremely hot this past week and very humid.  I glanced up at the sky. Very pretty.

Then I checked out my plants. I found some very tiny yellow mushrooms in one of the pots. Cute little things.

A blob of water sitting in the middle of one of the succulents. It looked like something gooey, but was only water.

A few peppers and tomatoes from the garden.

Last Saturday I went to the Los Angeles County Museum to see an exhibit of an artist named Carlos Almaraz. He is a native of LA, particularly Echo Park, that I visited a couple weeks ago. I showed some photos on my blog of the giant lotus plants at Echo Park Lake.  Alvarez painted a huge piece with three panels of the lake. This is only two of the panels.

Here is his version of “Starry Night” in Los Angeles.

I liked the way the light fell on the chair in this one. It is oil on paper rather than canvas. It was under glass, so the details were difficult to pick up with my iPhone.

After the exhibit my husband and I went to a restaurant across the street. They had murals inside depicting Los Angeles in the 40’s. Again, the quality is lacking due to the lighting and using my phone. It shows Wilshire Blvd, which is one of the main streets going through downtown, and the street the museum is on.

I am still enjoying the cool air coming through my windows.  Don’t know how long it will last, since September has just begun, but it’s a nice break.  Thank you as always for visiting.

 

 

 

8

August

Last week we experienced some cooler weather, but September’s triple digits have arrived a few days early. I was able to enjoy the outdoors, and noticed the changes in my mom’s yard. One of her neighbor’s has a magnificent grape arbor. Some of the grapes have grown over the wall into my mom’s yard.

In fact, a seed must have blown over as well, because there is a grape vine beginning to grow among my mom’s roses!

Her orange tree is full of oranges, but won’t be ready for picking until next spring.

The roses are still making an appearance, this one with a visitor.

It was even cool enough in the evenings to walk around her neighborhood. It’s interesting to walk through the streets where I used to ride my bike as a child. I found this on the sidewalk. It says 1957, one year before my family moved there. My mom has lived in her house for about 60 years.

The sunshine followed me inside, before it set for the day.

A few days ago I visited a place in LA called Griffith Park. It covers about 4,000 acres of land. It is one of the largest urban parks in North America. There is a huge observatory there to look at the stars. At the entrance is this cut out of Smokey the Bear.  Smokey was in TV commercials when I was little to remind people to be careful with matches when visiting forests and National Parks.

I saw a deer that day also.

I also went to an exhibit at a museum in Pasadena.  If you watch the Rose Parade, they start the parade in front of this museum, and you can see it on TV.  The exhibit was some of the work of the “Blue Four.”

Vasily Kandinsky…

Lionel Feininger…, Alexei Jawlensky, and Paul Klee.

Many years ago I was inspired by the piece above by Feininger, and carved out a scene from a large piece of linoleum. His was carved from wood.

The museum has a beautiful garden with Henry Moore statues throughout. When I saw this one it looked so whimsical. Two people sitting in the sunshine like many of the visitors.

That’s all for now. I hope you are enjoying your days. Thank you as always for visiting my blog.

 

 

4

Sunday In The Park

I am not an early riser, but today I got up very early so I could walk in Los Angeles before the heat set in. I have never seen the freeways so empty. It was early, but also Sunday, which is the only day and time they are not packed with cars. My friend Alex lives a little distance north of downtown. I arrived at her door at 7:20 am. Our destination was an area near her house called Echo Park. It is another of the older areas built in the early days of LA. There is a man made lake there called Echo Park Lake. Originally it was designed to be a drinking water reservoir. That was in 1870.  Today it is definitely not for drinking, but a beautiful place to visit. There are giant lotus plants.

Water lilies.

A fountain in the middle. Here you can see it through the palm trees.

There are ducks walking, people walking with dogs, and people walking without dogs.

The neighborhoods surrounding it are very diverse.  Old houses small and large.

But it’s known for it’s many historic Victorian houses. They are not my favorite. Too ornate.

It’s always a nice adventure to see parts of the city that I have not seen or don’t see often. I’ve been trying to walk in my own neighborhood in the early evening when the air cools down. A few photos of my recent excursion.

A flowering cactus.

This next one is a plumeria. It is a native of Hawaii.

This reminded me of my childhood.  We used to write with chalk on the sidewalk all the time.

The black mass in this last one is not clouds, but a rolling wave of fog coming from the ocean as I was finishing my walk, even though I live four miles from the beach.

Not many creative ideas this week. Only another small sketch on an old sheet of music.

I like to see new areas and wander around. I enjoy wandering.  A quote from Anatole France, “Wandering re-establishes the original harmony which once existed between man and the universe.”

I hope you are able to wander some this week, or do whatever you enjoy.  Thank you very much for visiting my blog.

 

 

 

 

 

10

Life’s Short…Eat Cookies

I went on a small downtown adventure with a friend on Friday. We did a lot of walking, it was hot, and there were lots of pedestrians and cars. But it was fun.  We had two destinations in mind, about 30 minutes walk from each other, so we parked in between. One stop was in Chinatown at the small Good Luck gallery to see some art work by Anna Zemankova. She was born in what is now the Czech Republic in 1908.  She was self taught, and made fantasy depictions of flowers using pencil, paper, fabric, embroidery, and beads. Her work is also being shown in Lausanne, Switzerland and New York.  My photos only show portions of some of the pieces, to try and show the detail in her art.

The gallery was in a little pedestrian walkway.

Our other stop was The Last Bookstore.  It is a huge and very unique place that primarily sells used books.  There are a lot of sculptural displays using old books.

But in between the gallery and the bookstore we stopped for a delicious lunch, and after the lunch, I ordered some of these beignets.  Really wonderful.

I’ve been trying to walk each day. The later afternoon is best because the weather has warmed up quite a bit.  Here are a few shots during one of those walks.

Finally a couple shots of little Lucy. This is a fabric tent about three feet long that folds up like an accordion. Here she is with Charlie. Lucy and Sophie (the cat) chase each other through it…

but sometimes she likes to get in it herself and wear it like a dress.

Enjoy your week.  Eat lots of cookies, and thank you for visiting my blog.

 

 

 

 

 

 

11

LA Days

The last few days we’ve had cloudy skies. It is typical for June. It has even been given the name of “June Gloom.”  Right before the gray skies arrived, we had some beautiful bright ones.  These are some photos towards the end of one of those days. Everything seemed to be glowing.

I had some buttons in different yellow/gold shades that I wanted to do something with, so I sewed them onto a canvas along with a few little metal pieces.

I had also gotten some beautiful vintage buttons at a flea market, and sewed them onto paper.  I need to get a frame so I can display them.

I went downtown last Saturday to participate in the “March for Truth.”

While I was there, I captured some of the city’s details to share with you.

There was some construction going on, so signs directed pedestrians where to go. They are building many new high rise apartments.

Parking is difficult to find downtown, and very expensive.  This lot was only $8.00 for the day.  It can go as high as $20.00.

Street venders.

I love LA. It is a mix of old and new, ethnicities and cultures.  But for those same reasons it is a joy when I have the opportunity to visit other places.

I hope you are enjoying where ever you are at this moment.  Thank you for for stopping by my blog.

 

 

 

 

5

Artful Day

Today I went to see an art exhibit, but when I got there, it was only photos of past exhibits.  Oh well, there were some nice things to see on the way, and the gallery is in a beautiful setting.  I thought I’d take a different way than I usually do, but I missed the offramp of the freeway.  At that point, I had to drive quite a distance down Sunset Boulevard, but that was OK too, because there were many things to look at. I enjoy driving through the different areas of LA.  I snapped a few photos of a neighborhood I went through.

The Jacaranda trees are in bloom, and when the flowers fall to the ground, it looks like a purple carpet.

The gallery is high on a hill in Hollywood.  Walking around the outside is as nice as looking at what’s inside. Across from the gallery is the Hollyhock House built by architect Frank Lloyd Wright in 1919. There weren’t any tours of the inside today, but the inside and outside have a lot of geometric designs.

In between the gallery and the Hollyhock house are rows of pine trees.  It is a quiet and peaceful place.

From the top, looking out in one direction, is a view of LA.

From the parking lot you can see the Hollywood sign.

They have art classes for adults and children.  On the way out of the parking lot there is a tall sculpture (very old) covered with tiles that children made.  I love the rough textures.

Finally, there are rows of olive trees as you drive back down the hill.

So, no art exhibit, but still very artful.

 

 

5

Sun (flowers) And Rain

It seemed as though summer had arrived here in Southern California.  The temperature was rising.  Sure signs of summer were appearing.

But then we got a day of very cold winter rain.  Not typical at all for May.

The weather has stayed fairly cool since then.  Last Saturday was a day of bird activities in Los Angeles.  A friend brought over her very large camera and we went to the Madrona Marsh five minutes from my house. It is nature preserve in the middle of my town.  When we arrived, we were told that a very rare bird from Mexico was sighted at the marsh that morning.  They said it was so blue that it looked purple. It’s name is Indigo Bunting.  We saw a blue bird, but not the rare Indigo Bunting.  We did see several groups of newborn geese.  I had only my iPhone, so I wasn’t able to get photos of the babies, but I got a couple photos of the adult geese.

I’ve continued to fill small boxes with tiny objects.  This first one is connected, but there are two separate photos of it. I buy eggs that are from humanely raised chickens. Some of the paper in the box is from the egg carton.

The next one has mini recreational objects.

I have more that I’m working on, and eventually I’ll attach each one to cardboard.

“Because we have viewed other animals through the myopic lens of our self importance, we have misperceived who and what they are. Because we have repeated our ignorance, one to the other, we have mistaken it for knowledge.”   Tom Regan, American philosopher

Thank you for visiting my blog.  Enjoy your day.

 

 

 

 

 

11

The Sun, the Moon…

The other night I walked in Redondo Beach overlooking the ocean.  I went with my two Camino walking buddies.  The sun was shining and the air was crisp when we started out.  We got to see this as we were nearing the end of our walk.

On a walk through my neighborhood I saw this.

I made some spring images with water color and a handmade stamp, some very thin paper and text from old books.  I then cut them up to send out as cards.

My bougainvillea is getting brighter as we move further into spring, and the tiny dormant plants have pushed through the ground.

There is a Japanese store near my house where almost everything is $1.50.  They have so many tiny and cute things.  It is very difficult to buy lots of things I don’t need.  But I couldn’t leave the store without buying these, especially because I have an old wooden chair I got from a thrift store that needed some. Tiny llama booties for the legs so they don’t scratch the floor! (Four in the package).

I just watched the Committee hearings of the Russian ties and involvement in our Presidential election.

“Three things cannot be hidden. The sun, the moon, and the truth.”   Buddha

Enjoy your week.  Thank you for visiting my blog.

 

 

 

 

7

Arrival of Spring

San Pedro is about 20 minutes drive from my house.  The climate often has the feel of the Mediterranean. This past Thursday was one of those days.  The air brushed against my skin with just a hint of breeze blowing.  I drove to a small park that overlooks the Pacific Ocean, and I felt like I was in Greece.

Nearby the park is the Korean Bell.  It is a huge bell surrounded by a beautifully painted pagoda.  It was given to the city of San Pedro by the the Republic of Korea to honor veterans of the Korean War, and consolidate friendship between the two countries.

I’m participating in a monthly art project with blog artists in Germany.  Each month there is a theme, and involves handmade stamps and patterns. This month is spring flowers. I’m thinking of ideas, but in the meantime I remembered an acrylic piece I had made using a linoleum stamp.  I was trying to make each row a shade lighter as I scrolled down the canvas.

I also found this piece of fabric I bought a while back, but haven’t decided what to do with it.

And here, a photo of some beautiful flowers I came upon during my walk yesterday.

“I had always planned to make a large painting of the early spring, when the first leaves are at the bottom of the trees, and they seem to float in space in a wonderful way.  But the arrival of spring can’t be done in one picture.”  David Hockney

Thank you for visiting.  Enjoy your week.

 

 

 

7

Captains of Our Souls

I’ve been out and about in different areas of Los Angeles this week. I went to a miniature show in Anaheim, home of Disneyland.  I’ve always loved things in miniature, but I’ve never seen tiny things as amazing as some of the items at the show.  Everything was made by hand.  One woman had made tiny fruits, vegetables, and bread.  Each piece was about a half inch or smaller in diameter.  They were totally realistic looking.  You could cut them in half with a tiny knife and the insides looked real also.  You could even peel the skin off of these avocados.

The photos are not in focus, but I only had my phone with me, and picture taking was difficult with everything being so small.  You can see the seeds inside of the bell pepper, and in the bottom left, the orange peel is peeled from the orange.

Another seller, who came all the way from Dresden, Germany, made TINY houses, trains, clocks etc. out of wood. These tiny bears and children were about a half inch long and had arms and legs that moved.

The show had everything tiny you could think of.  There were also miniature paintings.  When I got home I decided to make something tiny.  I came up with this miniature “paper” quilt.  I used water color, acrylic and some lino stamps, then sewed the pieces together.  It is four inches by four inches.

Next I went to an area called Century City to see a photo exhibit.  It has a lot of very tall office buildings similar to downtown.  I used to work there many years ago before I started teaching.  The days have been beautiful, and the buildings were all reflecting off each other.

On to South LA for the weekly meeting with my grassroots political action group.  We sat in an outdoor area of a cafe where the shadows created some nice imagery.

We’re staying vigilant amidst the daily onslaught of unconstitutional acts by the new administration.

We are still masters of our fate. We are captains of our souls.       Winston Churchill

Thank you for visiting.