Tuesday, April 29, 2014

"Mr. Stegosaurus"

Here is a better picture of the "roof lizard or "covered lizard".  One thing I love about dinosaurs is the way they can capture our imagination.  They are interesting structurally---familiar and different from animals of today's world.  They prompt us to think about scale, relativity of size and time, and cause and effect.  It's great to witness children gravitate to these extinctions with ease, and enjoyment and it is even better to see them get lost in painting something bigger than themselves.  So, I guess there is lots that I love about dinosaurs especially the rainbow kind. 

Monday, April 28, 2014

Mono Prints and Stegosaurus at Messy Business

mono print supplies and such     
We're making mono print books in Messy Business at EAM.  Today the kids colored their covers and printed their pages.  I taped foil to cardboard to make a surface for painting or braying and laying down their painted designs.  Then they laid their paper on top pulling it off to reveal their prints.  It was fun and messy.  Then, they painted a cardboard stegosaurus with lots of colored and named him "Mr. Stegosaurus".  I forgot to take a final picture of our friend all painted up.  He will be part of a student exhibition this weekend at EAM. 
pressing the paper to make a print

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

My Owl Friend

Another picture of this one
So, I've been going in lots of different directions lately or maybe as usual.  I've been trying to carve out some time and attention to refine my marketplace goods on Etsy and at American Artworks Gallery.  Recently I contributed a gift certificate for an embroidered pillow to the pre-school fundraiser and misspelled "embroidered".  Unfortunately, I didn't catch it in time.  Now, I hope its recipient won't question my ability to embroider their custom name correctly.  Aye Yi Yi!

Also, I've embroidered a a small owl stuffed animal and printed fabric for its backing.  It's my intention to have a whole family of these owls with different colors and names.  This one is Bert.  I've got some ideas for developing a website, new business cards, and postcards.  It's hard for me to be enterprising; it doesn't come naturally to me.   Here's the link to the listing on Etsy: My Owl Friend
Spell Check

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Girl Scout Ceramics Saturday

There was lots of inspiration and creativity among the girl scout troop yesterday. This is a pinch pot turned elephant.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

"The sky is pouring in"

I'm working on a painting for the next OPAL show in May.  I've decided to paint over an old painting which I made for the abstract show. It never felt resolved to me. This one probably isn't done, but it is getting close.
getting there
now I'm done--I think

Monday, April 14, 2014

Ceramic Samples and Buzz Cafe

Outside Buzz Cafe
I just got back from hanging some work at Buzz Cafe.  I've been frequenting this Harrison Art's District establishment since living in Oak Park.  It has taken me this long to bring art there, and it feels good.  Again, like the exhibit at the public library, I get a little thrill being in a non-gallery space where a wide variety of people get to see my work.  So if you get a chance to stop in for a cup of yummy coffee or a bowl of homemade soup you'll not only be able to support a small, local business, but you will be able to see some Anna Lentz' on the purple and green walls.  
Another happy thing is making ceramics.  It is definitely cheering me up considering the snow outside.  I'm teaching a one day ceramics class for a group of girl scouts at Elmhurst Art Museum.  Below are examples for the planned projects. 
pinch pot and coil constructed owl
slab butterfly bowl
pinch pot turtle or some other animal.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Kaleidoscope Quilt

After completing the house quilt last fall, my in-laws commissioned a quilt for their guest bed that would also have hand printed fabric.  Since my Father-in-law is a gardener, I immediately thought of designing some botanicals.  I also had a whole scheme for referencing lattice fences and using lots of greens.  I even bought the fabric for it.  After designing and carving the blocks, life interrupted and pulled me away from the project.  I continued to think about the quilt, and when I returned to it, I felt that my initial plan was pretty much wrong.  I was inspired by rich, jewel tones instead of muted greens, and I needed to do something about the structure.  I knew I wanted triangles, and during a routine cleaning at the dentist, I found myself staring at the fluorescent light above.  I noticed that the light was being refracted through a pattern of varying sized triangles not unlike  one of those bug eyed kaleidoscopes.  Well, the printing, heat-setting, piecing, pinning, and ironing has been quite a process.  Despite having made a dozen quilts or so, I grossly underestimated the time required for this project, but I am certain it was worth it.   In the end, it is too big to photograph--my close line isn't up yet. So, excuse the many photos striving to capture its massive dimensions.

Monday, April 7, 2014

Planting Seeds, Ice Cream, and Owl Nests at Messy Business at EAM

One of my favorite buildings in Berwyn, an old bank that reminds me of a Roman temple
After having last week off for Spring Break, it was fun to return to mess making with my moms and tots in Elmhurst.  We started by cooking up giant ice cream cones with sprinkles.  The ice cream is a mixture 1:1 of glue to shaving cream with some drops of food coloring.  My tots were experts at mushing the mixture in a ziplock bag.  Then, we made bug labels for our tin can planters and planted some Zinnia seeds.  The kids loved pouring the dirt and watering their magic seeds.  Finally, we made owl nests out of tissue boxes and fluffy stuff.  I guess we used some recycled materials--hooray for repurposing. Also, students took home glazed ceramics.  I managed to capture some photos of a few pieces, but there really was a huge variety.  We made pinch pots, frogs, slabs (which we printed with wheels, animal feet, and leaves), and cut-out shapes with cookie cutters.  Some students even had time to make small animal figurines. 

owl in nest
brother and sister cones
zinnia planter
tracks on a plaque
catching flies and a pinch pot
blue frog