Thursday, May 31, 2012

Just Like My Life (Not)

From the Style Section in today's New York Times-
What kind of dispatches will be coming from Oxfordshire, where Ms. Brooks said she had spent most of her time on visits wearing jodhpurs? “It’s about a different perspective of living on a farm,” she said. “I’ll be looking for style, of course, as I do now. It might be the way I arrange a cheese plate, or how I arrange the flowers in a guest room.”

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Truth Springs Eternal

From the New York Times
I was thinking, what is recession-proof?” Ms. Wilson recalled. 
The answer: “vanity.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

The Artist Baker creates a Farm Dinner

On Saturday, my daughter Sarah and I made our way to a lovely spot upstate where my friend Andrea, The Artist Baker created a dinner at Guy Jones'  Blooming Hill Farm for a crowd of ardent foodies who travelled from locations near and far. From the farm's rustic dining room, pizzas crafted and cooked in an outdoor pizza oven, to all sorts of other culinary delights, it was a treat to walk around with my camera and take it all in. Sarah pitched in to help and I had the maternal delight of watching my beautiful girl make herself useful in the mix of the kitchen hands and servers hard at work. Andrea has so many talents and draws such interesting people in to her orbit, I was glad we made the trip to this rural retreat. A few leftovers tucked away in the car meant my husband had a late dinner and I had some stories to tell.

Wouldn't it be nice?

Like many things in life, where wishes are encouraged and life delivers what it will- another opportunity to consume in the pursuit of possibility.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Scene in Sleepy Hollow

We live in an utterly bucolic neighborhood. There is mature landscaping. winding streets, you know a true suburban paradise. Not that all is copasetic.  Issues exist, albeit in more comfortable surroundings. Both good times and conflicts prevail.
On another note, a neighbor had the most startlingly, beautiful burst of a clematis vine I have ever seen. So problems notwithstanding,  I had to use my camera to bear witness to this truly amazing display of wonder. Something, on this less than perfect day, I am happy to share.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Flower Love

Parenthood here in Sleepy Hollow presents lots of challenges. Perhaps I should bold the lots. Three teenagers with varied permutations of personality, ideals, goals and needs. Well, we are in it for the long haul but there are times when a favorite magazine, tv show, or distraction is a welcomed relief from the nuttiness of adolescent offspring. Often times less is more. Flower gazing with my camera means never having to hear "Go away!" "Why must you!!" "Who are you?" "Stop now!!" So, to respect my children's privacy I refrain. The garden on the other hand, submits willingly. Totally. Always.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Studio Day at Genie's

The other day I photographed my former neighbor, Genie, who is in the process of launching a new venture. Her focus is training- specifically teaching yoga, life coaching and nutritional consulting. She is a beautiful woman with a neat way about her. It was a lot of fun to help her capture the images that will serve to illustrate her and her many talents for her website that is currently under construction. Creating a photo studio in her home made me reflect on all the many busy days I have spent in front of seamless paper, with a subject, strobe lights and a camera. I am excited for her and hope her new business is a big success.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Back Again

America's Got Talent was back for it's umpteenth season (okay seventh) and the addition of Howard Stern as a judge made the panel a lot more lively without the smug Englishman (sorry for such a negative opinion, Pierce). Howard definitely makes Howie Mandel seem even crazier- but in a nice way. That plus the fact that Howard is not afraid to touch people (unlike Howie) and actually seems to like your average citizen (something I never quite got from the recently departed and above referred to judge) is a definite improvement. It's hard to know why I like watching these shows. My family wanders in and out while it's on with expressions of pained fascination with my apparent wide range of cultural interests. (Okay, I also really like The Approval Matrix on the last page of New York magazine as another cultural litmus test). They managed to wrap up last night's opener with a very touching father daughter singing duo (Maurice and Shanice Hayes) who had me crying along with everyone else there. The combination of their voices, back story and seemingly fond respect for each other made me hope that they go all the way. From street performers to a decked out stint in Vegas - can a rag to riches story get any better than that?

And in addition- I think Nick Cannon does a world class job as m.c.  What a mensch!!

Monday, May 14, 2012

Suppose this

At times, I really don't know how to be. (Except I do.) I'm not supposed to ask for anything. I am supposed to give as much as I can. I am supposed to give whatever is asked of me. I am supposed to accept whatever I am given. I am supposed to not have any opinions that aren't nice. (I think I am allowed to have them. I am not supposed to express them.) I am supposed to like being a mother. I am supposed to like being a mother even when my family isn't supportive of me. I am supposed to take everyone's nuttiness. I am supposed to act like I care about others at all times. I am supposed to jump when someone needs something. I am supposed to not notice when people don't jump when I need something. I am supposed to be okay with however everything works out. I am supposed to do all the boring unpaid stuff because it needs to be done. I am supposed to feel okay when no one notices or appreciates the effort I make on their behalf. I am supposed to feel okay being invisible. I am supposed to feel okay surrendering my needs for someone else. I am supposed to feel that this is love when it doesn't feel like love at all. I am supposed to be okay with whatever hurts come my way because after all, that's the way I am supposed to feel.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Mother's Day around here

It wasn't a memorable Mother's Day. I didn't crave a fancy gift (not with sleep away camp, needed repairs and pending obligations...) or a not fancy one. I found myself cleaning the kitchen for a long spell and then, sort of nothing. My husband worked in the garden. that was his gift to me. It's not the gift I wanted- but whatever. Dinner sort of fell by the way side. I did get a Happy's Mother Day balloon and a while past dinner after I retreated to my bed to feel sad, there was a card. So, that was it. It's a little hard, it's true. You can't help but want more. You can't help but wish that your spouse would organize the kids to do something- a picture, a poem, a flower bouquet. Something that made me feel special. That's not to be.

They say you get what you insist for. You get what you deserve. There's a lot of hurt there and it will take a while before it fades away. My children, I think, get it. My husband is thick and unwilling. Mother's Day 2012 won't make the record books in a good way for sure.
Something else to forget.

Friday, May 11, 2012

Apropos Adobe

I recently joined a Linked-In Group for Indesign Users (okay- now I might start leaving some of you behind) and went to an event yesterday to preview the new Adobe Creative Suite  6.0 for designers who employ it for their work- mostly graphics based (as they say in the trade). The new tools are so powerful, so complex and capable that I felt my brain begin to melt during the very engaging presentation. Minds far more brilliant than mine have worked tirelessly to improve this already amazing line of digital applications. I was daydreaming all the way home of all the wonderful things I will create once I actually figure out how to use all its bells and whistles. Don't hold the presses as this could be a while. A serious while if you catch my drift.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

The New Yorker...Uncovered

Last night Liza and I make our way to Manhattan to attend a panel discussion about the art and politics behind The New Yorker's covers. We arrived in time to find great seats and sat up close- able to take in every wry comment from the panel and glances between those assembled to talk. Sometimes, just hearing intelligent commentary and seeing inspired visuals elevates my senses in a very good way. Liza and I were fascinated by the back stories on the covers they displayed and the two wonderful illustrators (Barry Blitt and Bob Staack) shared a little about their process and how they interpret events.  I have been engaged by The New Yorker for as long as I can remember. The combination of its writers, artists, cartoonists and editorials have been a source of influence for years.

Monday, May 7, 2012

I laughed. A lot.

I have a new crush on Jenny Lawson author of Let's Pretend This Never Happened. She has a great narrative style as well as a lot of funny (almost hard to believe) stories to tell. She can find the humor in anything. As well as everything.
So I hope she is enjoying lots of success, is the toast of of the media and makes some serious coin. I wonder who she envisions playing herself in some as yet to be made movie or one person show. Maybe she'll even play herself. (Fantasy #1- "No, I never studied acting" as Jenny walks the red carpet wearing a fabulous frock dripping in jewels and animal skins with her dashing spouse at the Academy Awards. Ryan Seacrest would be impressed for sure.) She has so many talents with her gift for gab, I look forward to her next chapter. I mean her next book, of course.

Friday, May 4, 2012

Someone Beat Me to It

As someone who loves polka dots and has used them in my artwork, I have found myriad ways to employ them over the years. So kudos to Jim Deitz of Grand Forks, Michigan for decorating the exterior of his home in such a lively fashion. I'm sure his house is easy to find now.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Vintage Me

Something to share from my New York City studio days. An unexpected moment captured on film.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Perfect for Springtime Necessities

I didn't realize how much I "needed" this Marc Jacobs Khaki tote bag until it popped up on the screen when I was reading the New York Times online. It's only $1,995.00 and the description says it's perfect for springtime necessities- so if any one has a spare $1,995.00 and wants to get it for me I would absolutely write that person a charming thank you note. Truly charming. Yes, your $1,995.00 purchase will get you this perfect blue checked bag made out of inviting lamb leather. I know there are women out there who are probably madly pulling out their credit cards to purchase this chic "must-have" as depicted on a banner on their screen but here in Sleepy Hollow, in our economy, this item seems like pure delicious folly.