The Horned Owl

I haven’t been working in stained glass much lately since I have been concentrating on adding more mosaics to my garden wall.  I had started this piece during the winter while my son was visiting. But for some reason the small tesserae tiles kept calling to me.  I have just completed the owl (finally) and it is now hanging in the window of my breakfast nook.

Actually, I needed to finish the piece because I will be using the bench to layout a commission just received – the mosaic will be 8 feet wide by 4-1/2 feet tall on completion.  It is a desert sunset quite unique to the view from my client’s home.  All the 3/8” tiles have been ordered – the shipment should arrive within the next week or so.  I still have to purchase the 1” glass tiles I use for bordering as well as the thin set and grout but that can wait for now.  The main focus of my attention for the foreseeable future will be on building the mosaic mural.

Stay tuned for updates on the progress of this new project.

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The Desert Sunset

This morning I finished grouting my latest panel.  I am quite pleased with this creation, having this time used a different type of  mosaic tile.  This piece is 4 feet wide and 3 feet tall consisting of approximately 10,000 3/8 inch Crystal Murrini tiles.  I chose these tiles  for the multiplicity of color they provided and have been rewarded with the extra sparkle of light reflected.

My main purpose in creating this mural was to use it as an advertisement of my work.  I would like very much to be creating “art” for other’s yard walls and it seems to me that most desert dwellers gravitate to Southwestern Art.  I’m thinking the reason might be because so many Arizonan’s are transplants from other states, just like me.

So now, my next task is to contact a photographer to have him capture some images to create an advertisement for several local magazines.  I have several flowers, some replicas of famous paintings and now some Southwestern themes.  And then…….. Hope the commissions start rolling in.

The Kokopelli

I’m not much for kitschy Southwestern art, but most people living in the Desert Southwest are into this type of artwork.  I caved and created a kokopelli mosaic for garden wall.

My intentions are to have a local photographer create a magazine layout for the advertisement of my work.  If you follow my  blog, you know most of my work both in glass and mosaic, is nature inspired.  In glass, I particularly like creating wild animals; in mosaic, I mostly create flowers or replications of French posters.  But hopefully to attain outside work, I am adding to the gallery on my garden wall some of the more common Southwestern themes that so many desert dwellers seem to admire.

This winter brought three nights of 12 degree temperatures to my part of the desert.  Many plants were frozen and just did not return this spring.  I had to have the gardeners remove about 50 feet of vine that covered a good portion of the North wall in my garden.  I guess this was fortuitous because now I am left with significantly more “canvas” for my mosaic work.  The kokopelli is complete and installed on that wall and I am now working on a desert sunset for another section of the same wall.

Le Chat Noir

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia 

Le Chat Noir (French for “The Black Cat”) was a 19th-century cabaret, meaning entertainment, in the bohemian Montmartre district of Paris. It was opened on 18 November 1881 at 84 Boulevard Rochechouart by the artist Rodolphe Salis, and closed in 1897 after Salis’ death (much to the disappointment of Picasso and others who looked for it when they came to Paris for the Exposition in 1900).

Perhaps best known now by its iconic Théophile-Alexandre Steinlen poster art, in its heyday it was a bustling nightclub — part artist salon, part rowdy music hall. According to Salis: “The Chat Noir is the most extraordinary cabaret in the world. You rub shoulders with the most famous men of Paris, meeting there with foreigners from every corner of the world.”

I have an 11″ x 14″ of this poster framed and hanging in the hallway of my home.  One day I was sitting at my desk  with my mosaic software opened and decided to try my hand at creating a mosaic of this famous poster.  I was successful – here’s a picture of the finished mosaic.  By the way, it on the wall in my backyard along with all the others – I guess you could say it is hanging in my outdoor gallery.

Melancholic Triggers

As you might remember, I had said I was thinking of creating Vincent Van Gogh’s “Starry Night” in tesserae mosaic tiles.  Well, the pattern is created and the tiles have been ordered and received.

All the time I was creating the pattern, I was hearing Don McLean’s song “Vincent” in my mind. 

Starry .starry night
paint your palette blue and grey
look out on a summer’s day with eyes that know the darkness in my soul.
Shadows on the hills
sketch the trees and the daffodils
catch the breeze and the winter chills
in colors on the snowy linen land. 

This song haunted me so, I called a friend who has an extensive collection of what I call “Back on the Block” music to have him burn me a copy of the album “American Pie”.  Unfortunately, “American Pie” was not in his collection. 

The next step was to visit Amazon.com, which proved helpful.  In fact so helpful,  I also added to my collection, James Taylor’s “the best of james taylor”, Jim Croce’s “Classic Hits” and the Carole King & James Taylor “Live At the Troubadour” album. 

But back to that song, why is it that it haunts me so?  Could it be because it is from times remembered fondly?  Times I so wish I could recapture today; simpler times, happier times, carefree times; times before life’s cruel lessons have been taught or learned?

Or could it simply be the artist in me?

Starry, starry night, paint your palette blue and grey

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZTHrTOzfqhg