This emotionally rich piece was created from love and tragedy.
My husband, Steve, bought this figurine for his mother—a Japanese couple picking persimmons. She had it for many years until it broke during a move after Steve’s death. I took the box of pieces home and found three pieces that told the story: the wife with her basket, the husband’s smiling face, and his hand that held his gift. They float in space, three dimensional, hollow, yet full of love.
So, even if you have items that are broken, but are meaningful to you, entrust them to me to create a wonderful space for them to live on.
Creating a Telling Images composition involves creativity, planning, and a lot of trial and error. The positioning of each element and the layering of objects and textures is a painstaking, yet very satisfying process.
My friend Sonia moved into a restored Victorian hotel a couple of years ago and I fell in love with it. So much so I almost opened a studio in one of the suites. The building was once the Sierra Madre Hotel, built in 1887, and lived among nothing but orange groves for years. As the city changed, the hotel became several other things including a private residence and a bordello!
Judy and Greg Asbury bought the property a few years back and spent a lot of money turning it into a multi-apartment dwelling. The house is grand, with a deep front yard with white picket fence and flowers. The backyard patio was home to many barbecues and casual parties. We played piano and opened Christmas presents in the parlor, had elaborate, delicious dinners in the dining room, chatted and drank wine on the veranda. We even welcomed dozens of children on Halloween.
Greg and I were discussing photography and shamanism (both of us do both of those things). I asked about any trinkets they had from the remodeling. He rewarded me with a multitude of items that were found in walls, rooms, and the garden. I collected some flowers from the garden and ran home to create. This is the result. A letter more than 100 years old, wallpaper at least as old, medicine bottles from when the home was a sanitarium, the precious leather baby shoe, the square nail proving its age. What a joy to tell even just a small part of this building’s storied history in one piece of art. I hope to do more like this, for organization, community, and other anniversaries or tributes. Here is more about the house.
This piece represents the kind of historical assemblage I can create to honor an event, a town, a business, organization, building, anniversary, etc.
My aunt recently shared the contents of my grandfather’s trunk with my cousins and me. I was thrilled to receive my grandmother’s wedding dress, gloves, my grandfather’s matching cravat, and lots of jewelry.
From these is born this memorial image of their 1920s wedding. Note the wedding rings on the glove fingers. These will go to my cousin’s children, but all of us now have a visual memory of them.
Al and Hilma, both from Sweden, were married for more than 60 years. You’ll see the crystal lovebirds I gave them on their 60th anniversary in other pieces.
Consider this kind of image to immortalize a family wedding and share it with future generations. Learn more about commissioned pieces.
Quite often it’s the cactus or epiphyllum flowers that just blow my mind. They bloom for a night, maybe two, and they close up and fall away. That’s why I love to find them in the bud stage and wait impatiently for them to pop. The best part is there are usually a bunch that bloom within a few days of each other so it’s quite the spectacle.
Occasionally I ask neighbors if I can have one or two of their beauties. I have a series of Telling Images compositions using the large cactus flowers, haven’t quite got one I like using the epiphyllum glories.
Heart of the Dragonfly is one of my favorites, and is an award winner. I kept this one simple…three gorgeous cactus flowers, a delicate bejeweled dragonfly, and the man climbing and reaching for beauty. So if you have any buds popping up in your yard, call me! I’ll capture them and send you a print for your kindness!
In 2008, the year before my world exploded, I met a genius artist who taught me his latest talent–using a scanner to create stunning images. Ed Martin is an artist filled with ideas. Nearly 90 now, he’s slowed down, but I’m proud to call him my mentor. When he saw my first image made on my scanner, he wrote, “it is so beautiful, may we trade?”
I knew then I’d found my calling.
This is the first image. I filled the “pitcher” with plants, nuts, bugs, acorns, even a bloody mouse on cheese and a cracker (just resin!). The Italian glass fish adds that touch of water life.
Creating images on a scanner gives me a new way to tell stories. I was a journalist, feature writer, theatre reviewer and a cog in the non-profit writing and marketing wheel for years. Now I get to do this!