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

Days

Each week I stay a few days with my mom to help her. The weather there is much hotter than where I live. The days reach 100 degrees. Although the evenings are still warm, it’s enjoyable to be outside. Here are a few shots taken one evening after the weather cooled down a bit. The tree on the left in the first photo reminds me of a castle.

My mom has some old newspapers from the small town where she was born in Minnesota. They are from 1925.  The illustrations for the advertisements are wonderful. The dresses show the styles of the 1920’s.

Besides needing a fashionable hat, it seems gloves were an essential part of your fashion statement,  the latest style having “cuffs”.

Here is a recent sketch I made while reminiscing on the Camino. I used a vintage music sheet I got at a flea market.

More roses from my mom’s garden.

“All life is an experiment. The more experiments you make the better.”   Ralph Waldo Emerson

Thank you for your visit to my blog.

 

 

 

 

 

6

Past and Present

I went to a flea market last Sunday.  It was a warm day, but still fun looking at old stuff.  I like old paper items and found these.

A Nature magazine from 1949.

Some cards and postcards from the early 1900’s.

And an old book of Norwegian sardine recipes.

Here is one of the recipes. (Notice the sardines are arranged like a SUN). My grandmother was from Norway. I remember there always being sardines in the cupboard when I was a child, but the recipes in this book are pretty unusual.

I walked around a neighborhood in San Pedro the other day. There were pretty clouds in the sky, but the air was humid. The homes in this area are old and charming, and many overlook the port.  Ships from around the world dock there.

The next one was driving back home. The port and water are on the other side of these bushes.

A few miscellaneous shots from the week.

A small sketch.

Maggie after her bath.  Although I dried her with my hair dryer, she was still shivering.

Flowers in my neighbor’s yard.

And a very tiny lemon (the size of my thumb nail) that fell off my lemon tree.

That’s all for today.  Enjoy the remainder of our July days.  Thank you for visiting my blog.

 

 

 

 

 

 

12

Here Comes the Sun

I’ve been spending time at my mom’s house. She’s ill and not able to stay alone, so my brother, sister and I take turns staying wth her.  She lives about an hour’s drive from me, in one of the areas that gets the hottest weather.  The past couple weeks it was 110 degrees.  The heat is tolerable when it’s dry, and the evenings are nice for being outside.  But lately there has been a lot of humidity which is not typical.  Very unpleasant. Before my father passed away, he planted many many rose bushes.  The extreme heat fries the blooms, so while I stayed with my mom, I would go out each day and cut the buds to bring in the house.  They would bloom in a couple days.

This next one I held up to a painting of flowers.

My mom is 87 years old, and saves almost everything.  She had hundreds of old recipes from newspapers and magazines.  The old illustrations were fun to look at.

I’m also reading Don Quixote.  I started it years ago, but didn’t get very far. Now I will continue to read until I get to he end of the 1,050 pages.

Among my mom’s very old treasures is this bracelet depicting some of Don Quixote’s adventures.  I love this scene of him charging the windmill.

A setting sun on vintage post cards to link to Mullein Art blog. I made a small stamp for the water.

A sun painting by Vincent Van Gogh. I saw the original many years ago at the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam.  Everyone in the museum seemed to be humming the song, “Starry Starry Night.”

I got this sun in Mexico. It hangs in my kitchen.

Enjoy your sunny summer days.  Thank you for visiting my blog.

 

5

The Nature of Things

There was a bee swarm in a tree in my yard the other day.  I always thought that a swarm meant that they were moving around.  But this one was as big as a basketball, and all the bees were clinging to each other as they hung from the tree. I found out that sometimes as they are migrating, the queen cannot fly as far and needs to stop and rest. All the bees stop with her, and after resting for a day, they fly off.  In this case it was just a few hours, and they were gone.  I wasn’t outside, so I didn’t get to see them all depart.  The tree was in the shade, and the bees were too far up to get a photo, but I found a picture to show you what it looked like.  Nature taking its course.

A couple additional nature photos from mine and my neighbor’s yard.

In keeping with a rose theme, I made some rubbings with colored pencils from a vintage embroidered rose I had. This is in participation with Mullerin Art blog.  First the embroidery.

Rubbings.

Here is an appliqué I did a while back. I posted this before, but I couldn’t resist posting it again (since they are roses).

A box cover.

Someone brought this guy to the animal shelter a few days ago when I was volunteering.  It was decided that the Marsh by my house would be a good home for him.  There was a lot less water than the last time I visited, just a short time ago. All the green in the photo was covered with water then.  The geese were gone, but I saw a few ducks to keep him company, gliding through the remaining water.

His feathers were long and very soft brown.

Thank you for visiting my blog.  Enjoy your week.

 

7

Moving Into May

In the early evenings on Thursdays, my two Camino friends and I walk near the beach.  Last week we saw a large group of whales making their way up to Alaska.  Pictures were difficult because I was too far away, but it was magical to see them lift their heads out of the water.  They were very close to shore. If you look at the middle of this photo and a little to the left, that black spot is one of them.

Other views from that evening.

I’ve been working on a variety of projects this past week.  Below are a couple sketches from my Camino photos.

A friend and I might sell some of our crafts in an upcoming flea market.  I took a lot of things I have accumulated and started cutting, and gluing.  The first is the start of some small boxes.  I plan on mounting them on cardboard with wire to hang on a wall.  I’ll show that when I finish.  I think it will give them a sturdier look.

More to come.  The recipe above came from a very old cookbook I got at a yard sale.  It looks like it’s from the 1940’s, and is bound with string. It was put together by the Borden Company. I remember my mom buying Borden’s evaporated milk to use in various recipes when I was a child.  I love the illustrations in the book.  I’m going to use some of the pages to stamp on.

I’m gluing extra plates and cups together to make cookie pedestals.

I have been involved with a small political grassroots group since the 2016 election.  We want to help get Democrats elected to Congress in 2018.  We are ready to launch a website in two days. The site will have information on candidates and voting rights around the United States. The name of the site is Blue Sweep LA.

That’s all for now.  I hope your week is good.  Thank you for visiting my blog.

 

 

 

 

6

Rooms With A View

A few windows to participate in Muellerinart blogspot window theme. These are from my Camino Santiago walk last year.

After leaving Pamplona.

In the town of Belorado.

Sahagun.

A sketch from my travel journal while staying in the tiny town of Sabenche, near Barbadello.

These last three are from Madrid.

I’m planning on doing some window stamping pieces.  I’ve been ill and haven’t had an opportunity.  Will share next time.

If you are interested in checking out more of my Camino walking photos, click on the months of April and May of 2016 in the archives of my blog.

Have a good weekend.

7

It’s Coming On Christmas…

Christmas is covering the neighborhoods.  These soldiers were made by putting four terra cotta pots together.  They were about three feet tall.

img_3073

img_3067

This display was at a shopping center.

img_3076

Maggie, Charlie, and Lucy are ready for our cold night walks.

fullsizerender

And a recent photo of Sophie.  She’s about four months now, and looking quite a bit bigger than the day I brought her home. She likes to be with the dogs.

img_3079

A new mail art piece, with a little vintage embellishment.

img_3102

I was going through some lino stamps I made, and pulled out this piece I had used some of them on.  It is acrylic on canvas. The deer stamp I made from a photo in an art history book.  There is some hand stitching and glitter added.

img_3103

We had some beautiful sunsets a few days ago.  This is a view from my front yard.  The lights in the left corner of the second photo are lawn ornaments.  People love to put giant inflatable Christmas decorations in their yards that light up at night.

img_3059img_3060

“It’s coming on Christmas

They’re cutting down trees

They’re putting up reindeer

And singing songs of joy and peace.”           Joni Mitchell

I hope you are enjoying your days.  Thank you for visiting.

 

 

 

 

9

Light In Winter

This first photo I’m sharing with Macro Mondays.  Although our nights are very cold, recent days have been beautiful with soft, warm, air and light.  I was giving my yard a little water, and this droplet stayed on the nasturtium leaf.

img_2977

I found some interesting old envelopes at a flea market.  Here is one that I made into mail art.  I noticed how perfect the handwriting is on the address.  It reminds me of how we were taught to write in school.  These days, people’s writing is very different, sometimes difficult to read.

img_3058

I participated in a boutique at a friend’s church. I sold mini cakes and breads along with some tiny succulent plants in equally tiny pots and cups.  I’ve always liked miniatures.

img_3037

The boutique was downtown, and although I’ve been to the area many times, I stumbled on some old amazing apartments a few blocks away.  They looked like classic LA buildings from an old movie.  Some have been made into condos.  I looked up the year they were built when I got home.  Built in 1922.

img_3042

img_3045

img_3041

img_3048

The end of each day has brought a warm glowing light that shines on the houses.  Some photos during my walks through the neighborhoods this week.

img_2983

img_2981img_3027

I put some lights on a fruitless olive tree in my front yard.  When I first started doing this, the tree was very small.  Now I have to stand on a ladder, throw the lights around to the other side, get down from the ladder and repeat a few times.

img_2998

“You may not always have a comfortable life and you will not always be able to solve all of the world’s problems at once, but don’t ever underestimate the importance you can have because history has shown us that courage can be contagious and hope can take on a life of its own”.                     Michelle Obama

Trying to stay hopeful as our country’s leadership changes.  Have a great week.  Thank you for visiting.

 

7

November Chill

We had a very cold day here on Sunday, with wind and drizzles on and off.  A friend and I had planned last spring to get a booth at a flea market for that day.  It is usually so hot where the flea market is held, we decided November would be a good month, and last year brought us little rain, so no need to worry about bad weather.  It was a fun day in spite of the cold, and rain, and wind.  We had a covering for part of the space, and had to move anything perishable to the center.  We brought hand made items and vintage wares. This photo shows just one side of our selling space.

img_2970

A couple days before the flea market, I saw a unique play in downtown.  It was three Latina friends getting together for Christmas, and sharing stories from childhood family Christmas gatherings.  The stories were funny, sad, hopeful, and all true. The theater itself only held about forty people, so everyone was very close to the stage.  But the lobby was enormous and beautiful.  The building had been a bank about a hundred years ago. A lot of the old buildings are being restored and made into apartments.

latclobby

After sketching a few window scenes a couple weeks ago, I thought I’d practice painting from some Henri Matisse prints in a book I have.  I started out a little small, and the details were difficult to do in acrylic, so although I started sketching on canvas, I finished them with colored pencils. The pencils were fun, though. I had never used colored pencils on canvas.

img_2974

img_2973

Soon I will be filling this spot above my fireplace with Christmas decorations, but I noticed this wonderful shadow one day as the light came through a window.  You can see the shadow of the bottle on the left, but the shadows on the right seem to be coming from the etchings on the glass bowl next to it.

img_2964

“The best way to not feel hopeless is to get up and do something. Don’t wait for good things to happen to you.  If you go out and make some good things happen, you will fill the world with hope, you will fill yourself with hope.”    Barack Obama

Thank you for visiting.  Have an excellent week.