Posts Tagged ‘art’

Stuff I finished recently

November 20, 2016

Big catchall post.

I recently finished #100wikidays, a personal challenge in which you commit to write a new Wikipedia article every day for 100 consecutive days. I did all biographies, mostly women, as usual; looking over the list, there were only two that I’d even heard of before the day I wrote their article. (This is how I usually work; if I don’t previously know anything about the subject, then I can’t say anything about them without a source. It still helps to know something about their historical context, of course.)

There were at least a dozen African women (because I was also doing the Africa destubathon for part of the time); a couple of Cornishmen (because of the West Country Challenge–sensing a theme?); two blind organist/composers from Philadelphia; one mother-son pair of artists; a lot of North Carolinians (partly because the NCPedia is online, unlike a lot of state historical encyclopedias); a few Guggenheim fellows, and a bunch of US women active in the peace movement. I even wrote two of the articles in a hospital bed when I needed an emergency surgery for a kidney stone. Here’s my whole list of 100 new articles. It was fun and I’d recommend it.

I also, recently (as in today), finished my contributions for the Yarn Bombing Los Angeles installation “California Yarnscape”, which will happen at the Autry Museum in spring 2017. Here’s my crocheted “Sequoias”, inspired somewhat by 1930s WPA posters for the national parks:

Also, somehow, I made two Halloween costumes this year; my son’s was the more ambitious, a rolling tarantula of funfur and pantyhose and wire and so much duct tape…

Mine was four pretty easy pieces (but I love the elaborate hat); an alien priestess costume, based loosely on the Sisterhood of Karn in old Doctor Who.
Finally, look for Jake and me in this flashmob video made at Venice Beach last Sunday. You’ll need to look closely; I’m in a black hat and red dress; Jake’s in his blue Convaid chair. This was also a lot of fun to do.

You’re invited!

December 2, 2015

I’m one of the artists, but the whole show is going to be fun. If you’re in the LA area, I’d love to see you at the opening! It’s also a great place to shop, if you’re still buying holiday goodies.
Cardboard Art Flyer_vdarker

Five Years, Same Panels, Redondo Seawall

April 19, 2015

Nell and I have been doing chalk art at the Redondo Seawall for five years now–always on the same panels, more or less, at the beginning of the walk.   A retrospective:

2015 (yesterday; see better images of the individual panels at ipernity):

Four panels of chalk art on a wall near the ocean.

Nell did the one with wings, I did the other three.

2014 (we were in a hurry, only stayed a couple hours, had to go to a bar mitzvah that night in Temecula; so I didn’t get one photo with all three panels, but you can see 2-3-4 in these):

panel of chalk art, woman with voluminous skirts reading.

Chalk art at seawall, 2014.

teen girl doing chalk art on a wall

Nell doing chalk art at seawall, 2014.

Human figure with bubble background, drawn in chalk on a wall.

Chalk Gollum-ish character 2014.

(there were two events in 2013, we chalked the same squares at both of them):

Three panels of chalk art on a wall near a pier

Nell did the one with wings, I did the other two.

teen girl working on chalk art on a wall near the ocean

Nell did the one with wings, I did the other two.


Chalk art in three panels, on a wall near a pier.

Nell did the one with flippers, I did the other two.

There’s a time-lapsed video of me working on panel 4 that year.

2011 (our panels weren’t all in a row that first year, so there’s no one photo for them; Nell did the NintendoDS, I did the other three):

chalk image of a fish drawn on a wall

Chalk Blackside Hawkfish 2011

Surreal Seascape chalk image on a wall.

Surreal Seascape, 2011.

Chalk copy of Edouard Manet, "On the Beach," drawn on a wall.

After Edouard Manet, 2011.

Child's chalk image of a Nintendo DS, drawn on a wall.

Nintendo DS with accessories, 2011.


Serendipity Paint

April 17, 2014

Serendipity Paint

Are you an art teacher? Does it pain you to throw away the paper plates of expensive paint after a lesson? Make serendipity paints. The three above came from one large classroom’s leftovers! Three spice jars, one each for reds/blues/golds, scoop and scrape your paints into the jars to filled, cap tightly. These are great prizes for young artists, or gifts for fellow art educators–practically free, and they’re keeping some paint out of the trash.

Trash for Teaching in Gardena

February 29, 2012
Trash for Teaching in Gardena 2, originally uploaded by pennylrichardsca.

I checked out Trash for Teaching, a warehouse of mostly post-industrial stuff that can easily become supplies for art projects, models and dioramas, displays, crafting… you get the idea. The image above shows four of the bins. The image below, about half of the bins. There are a lot of bins.

Bins, Trash for Teaching in Gardena

Bins, Trash for Teaching in Gardena

I got a materials membership, so I’ll be back a lot… stay tuned. If you want to come with me sometime, they’re open on Wednesdays in the daytime, and one Saturday a month.

Don’t tempt me

April 6, 2009

No really…. even if you send me something as small as a button–if it’s a cool Polka Dot Creations button–I’m going to have to make a purse based on it.  The brown purse is from a thriftshop, great leather, clean inside (except there was a sample vial of perfume in one of the pockets). Before:

Brown purse, BEFORE

Brown purse, BEFORE



The button is attached with thread, after I got Peter to drill holes in the leather.  There’s a lot of gesso, acrylic paints, sharpies, modpodge, krylon.  (See my altered purse tutorial here.) And that button.



Unique hazard of art education in Los Angeles

October 8, 2008

So, we need scrap paper, a lot of it, in the art room at Lincoln.  Friday at the docent workshop we used pages from discarded TV and movie scripts, because the supply chair’s husband had a pile of them.  Perfect, right?  Or not so perfect.  We discovered that we need be careful about that source, because at least one page had a big ole F-bomb right in the middle of it.  Guaranteed a kid would find that.  Another docent volunteered some scrap paper tonight–old movie scripts.  I told her to screen them for language, and bring them in.

Better bring some of my own scrap paper for the pile.  Old drafts of my journal articles and conference talks are guaranteed 100% f-bomb-free.  The only possible risk is that they’d bore a kid to tears.

Marimekko and IMDb

October 4, 2008

Yesterday was the first docent training workshop for this year’s Hands on Art program–the volunteer-led art education program in Redondo schools.  It was great fun–we made foam stamps and printed on canvas and talked about Finnish fabric design in the 1960s.  I’ll attach a photo of some of the docents’ works when I get the latest pics off my camera.

We’re mostly moms and grandmas (there are a very few dad volunteers).  We don’t live in a glamorous suburb of Los Angeles–no big-name sports legends at the PTA fundraisers (that’s Manhattan Beach, next door).  At the Lincoln School tables, we just have the usual Redondo mix of engineers and writers and former teachers and accountants and… movie actresses.

No, Angelina Jolie isn’t getting covered in tempera paint at Hands on Art (we could probably sell tickets to that).  People Magazine can send its paparazzi elsewhere.  But  Joanna‘s the bartender in “Dude Where’s My Car?”  Cat played a football player’s wife in “Any Given Sunday.”  When you see a movie, notice the people in those smaller roles.   Chances are, they go home and feed the cat, they have to find the kids’ backpacks and sign the teachers’ notes, and maybe, just maybe, they’re getting painty and teaching art to Kindergarteners.   Just because they’re cool like that.

(I’m just realizing the Angelina Jolie-tempera paint sentence may bring eager visitors here through the magic of Google.  Sorry to disappoint.)

1st Place, Family Division!

August 24, 2008

“Frida Underwater” Chalk Art , originally uploaded by pennylrichardsca.

Nell and I were part of a Chalk Art Festival at Redondo Pier today–and we won 1st Place in the Family Division! About $100 in gift cards from restaurants, and a whale-watching trip for two (to be used in the winter). Our 6×6 square was titled “Frida Underwater,” and I have to say it was a big crowd favorite. I think we must be in a hundred families’ vacation photos after today. We heard oohs and aahs in various languages; it was especially nice to hear parents take the opportunity to tell their kids about Frida Kahlo being a famous artist from Mexico.

But now I’m a little sunburnt, and my left pinkie is on strike. Still, very fun day. We’ll definitely do it again next year.

UPDATE:  Here we are in the Beach Reporter; here I am in the Daily Breeze, also here.

More art in the park today

August 16, 2008

If you’re local to me, stop by Anderson Park between 10-2 (or afterwards, I guess, for the chalk art aftermath)–I’ll be doing some chalk art and face painting for Lincoln’s Kindergarten Picnic, where new K families get to join the PTA and meet each other while visiting with some of the activities chairs (I’m representing Hands on Art). The kids are so cute, and the parents are fun to talk with. And it means the first day of school really is just around the corner….well, two and a half weeks around the corner, but who’s counting the days…. hours…. minutes….