Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Alice In Wonderland

Howdy! I got a panicked call last Friday from a stage mom who got put in charge of the set (designing and creating) for an all children's cast of "Alice In Wonderland." I've worked on sets for "Cinderella" and "Sleeping Beauty" before but this one was a little different in interpretation.

They wanted big butterflies suspended from the ceiling so I did some sketches. Oh yeah--the director went the "psychedelic" route instead of the usual Disney look.

Hannah took this photo of me working in our garage. The show opens Friday night. Yikes!!

The beginning stage: Hannah helped me outline them all in white so they'll glow under black lights.

The finished product: they were easier to do than I anticipated. Texas heat really helps; they dried in no time flat.

So here they are in all their glory! Or, in my garage anyway. I'll try to get a photo of "Alice's" house; I painted that, too. Break a leg, guys!

Monday, March 30, 2009

The Old Is Gone, The New Has Come!

This is a video I put together of photos I took yesterday. Our church held a baptism at a family's home this past Sunday, and nearly the entire congregation turned out to share lunch on the lawn and witness four people make public declarations of faith.

I was very moved by the beauty of it all and hope that these photos touch you in a similar way.
As we prepare for Easter, let's remember one of my favorite things about God:


Thursday, March 26, 2009

Drippy Thursday Morning

Hi all. This morning I was doing my usual patrol of the neighborhood before going to work and decided that I'd come back and photograph some of the plants I'd noticed. They are steadily budding and pushing out blooms. It's raining here today and the whole sky looks to be about 6 feet off the ground. Very dark, dank, depressing. (It's Alliteration Day, I decided, as part of my theme days during Spring Break.)

Check out this cool image! All these pods are busted open and dried up. Yet one new red shoot emerges from the top.

All the plants were covered in dew (it wasn't raining yet) so I did my best to capture the individual raindrops. I love my new lens!

One of my favorite shots, I took this crouched down and looking up underneath the flowers.

Happy Thursday. --Rachael

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

In Memoriam
This is dear Pico, beloved hamster of Hannah for almost two years. He died Sunday night of unknown, but natural, causes. He will be sorely missed by his surviving family.

Lanier took Hannah to Polly's Pets yesterday to get a new hamster. They came home with the tiniest creature! We think it's a girl, and Hannah named her Tuesday. Coincidentally, they got the hamster on a Tuesday. She's too quick to photograph just yet; hopefully after Hannah tames her I will get a few pictures. She's half the size of Pico and the exact same coloring.

These are the gorgeous flowers my sweet husband got me on Monday to soften the blow of my trip getting canceled and the death of poor Pico.

And here is a bird's eye view of my dining room table: it's looked like this for two weeks. I painted four bags last night for AOTL. I think they turned out nicely! See more photos below...

These are the big bookbags I've done. I have six (two are unpainted as of yet).

I really like the blue plant-like image. Each bag is painted on both sides.

Here's my favorite of the small bags so far. I really like how this one turned out.
Very tedious work, hand painting these.

And here are the four I did last night. I found some smaller book bags and thought, how cute for little girls like Sophie to use. Hannah and I thought it'd be good to put scriptures on them. Hannah supplied some of them. AND, Mom please tell BigMama that Hannah just finished reading her Bible all the way through! Congratulations, Squirt!

This one was taken from two paintings I have in my house that I did about three years ago. At our old house we had a kumquat tree growing in the front yard; our only bit of landscaping. One summer the tree was just loaded with fruit, so I did some sketches on napkins and then painted two canvases. They hang over my bed. This bag's my favorite.

On Monday Hannah had a choir performance at school AND a mission trip meeting. Despite her sore throat (and dead hamster) Hannah didn't want to miss either commitment. Here are photos I got of her in action:

Here is Hannah with Storm and BJ. They're all in choir and theatre together and all three are going to the Joseph Baldwin Academy for Young Scholars in July! Storm went last year but Hannah and BJ are going for the first time. It's a three-week long college program for top students at Truman State University. Hannah is thrilled to pieces to be going.

The entire Canyon Middle School Choir

Here's Hannah (far left) practicing a skit for her trip. Each girl is pretending to be enslaved, overloaded with the weight of sin.

Here, the boy playing Jesus comes along and "frees" each girl from the "chains" that link them all together.

They watch as Jesus takes on each girl's "weight." The load gets heavier and heavier.

Finally he "dies" on the Cross and each girl falls at his feet in worship.
It's a pretty powerful skit! The whole thing is acted out to music and is very well choreographed.

Well that's our week so far! More to come as we participate in Art on the Loop this Friday.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Making Art?

Hi all. Hannah had a lot of homework yesterday and I had a lot of art to make, so we spent a quiet evening at home, working together at the dining room table. Bess, you'll notice that I gave Hannah my Russian doll t-shirt you got me; it shrank too much for me to wear.

Anyway, I drove up the neighborhood to sketch a couple of things I thought were interesting. Here are the sketches:

I dunno what theses things are, but they make cool shapes. I thought I'd do some kind of graphic, flat image but the modeling on the seed pods below was just really interesting. I also bought a linoleum block from Hobby Lobby and hope to make some prints of this soon....
Here's my attempt to make a painting of the above image on one of the canvas bags I'd bought to decorate and sell at Art on the Loop March 20.

Beginning to lack inspiration I thought, hey butterflies are always popular. So I googled some images and then adapted my sketch (translation: made it simpler because it's really hard to paint).
This is definitely my favorite bag so far. I've only done the one side and I'll add some beads on later. I'm into Islamic art right now (seen a lot of it on my travels) and love love love the details and intricacy of the tiles and fabrics I've seen. This is a very rough attempt on my part.
So that's what's happening here. Oh and it rained today, finally. My little lettuces and other plants (either tomatoes, cilantro or basil) are sprouting. I'm fighting rollie pollies and was amazed at how many gardening forums there are online, AND how many people have rollie pollie trouble AND how none of them know how to get rid of them. The most interesting suggestion I've received so far came from a friend who said to stick an empty beer bottle down in the soil which would trap the pollies when they fall in. They can't get back out. Hmmm....

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