My photo
North Georgia Mountains
sculptor, painter, mixed media artist

Tuesday, February 14, 2012


I get it that not EVERYONE loves Valentine's Day. So this year I made a few alternatives. The studio and barn are a complete mess right now so the kiln isn't up and running. These are air-dry paper clay. Wonderful product though not quite as durable as any of the fire clays or porcelain.

Happy Valentine's Day

I do love Valentine's day. I love ALL holidays. When you make things, holidays are just another deadline. But Valentine's day is nice because I get to spoil The One I love best!

Below are some homemade cards I collaged as well as a sweet treat :)

Doh! Try as I might I can't get the orientation of this picture correct. Good thing there are more pics of each individually. :)

This Belongs To You

Your Heart Shines Thru

My Heart Goes With You

I found this on.... PINTEREST! (of course) Neither of us eat Rolos but I thought it was so cute!

The one on Pinterest used craft paper. I prefer recycled tea bags. The color is so pretty!

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Paradise Gardens revisited

I just learned with certainty that Chattooga County purchased Paradise Gardens. I can't express how happy this makes me. There have been whispers about this for the last several years but then it would get quiet again and nothing would happen.

Paradise Gardens is the product of the blood, sweat and tears of Reverend Howard Finster. An evangelist Baptist preacher who became an artist due to Divine intervention (God asked him to do 5,000 paintings to spread the Gospel; he did over 48,000 pieces of artwork), he is considered by many as the grandfather of the American folk art movement.

Reverend Howard started building what is now known as Paradise Gardens on it's currently location in 1961.... on 4 acres of swampland in Pennville Georgia. He worked continually on it until his death in 2001. A sad note: after his death a portion of the gardens was ripped out and has become part of the permanent exhibit at The High Museum in Atlanta. While I LOVE The High, Paradise Gardens makes no sense out of context. But maybe if it's introducing those people to Reverend Howard who wouldn't normally make the trip to Pennville, it's not a completely evil thing?

my two sisters being goofy with the Finster Coke bottle

my sister Sonia outside the bottle house, one of the inspirations for my bottle wall

my sister Lynn in the garden

cool cement faces! There are lots of these cement and mosaic pieces spread thru the whole garden.

I've always called this The Disco House.

The Chapel. This building is amazing... and also in danger of becoming a complete cave-in. A strong wind would blow it over.

The county owning Paradise Gardens can only be a positive. The gardens are in desperate need of funding and repairs. I've also been saying for decades the place needs to be listed on the national historic registry. Maybe with the gardens being owned by the county they can start getting the grants and federal funding needed to ensure the creations of Reverend Howard is around for many more years to come.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012


Sometimes I work on pieces so long I forget whether I've posted them or not. This piece took over a year but it's been complete for probably the last couple months. I lost steam like 3 or 4 times when making it. But now it's finally complete and I love it.

My crow was first formed out of chicken wire.

The wire is covered in joint compound.

Joint compound, once dried, sands up very nicely.

It's also very porous so it takes a LOT of paint to cover.

Originally I thought I piece of wood from our scrap pile would work as a stand. But all that wire and joint compound made my poor little crow (umm, or actually rather LARGE crow) extremely heavy. So The Man made a flat side to this log. Then He drilled holes in it to slide the legs down in. I thought I might need to pour some kind of two-part resin down in to secure it. But this baby isn't going anywhere!!!

Wednesday, February 1, 2012


If I didn't have to work a 9-to-5er I'd have pink hair. I always tell myself this. Who knows if it's true or not. But when I go on journeys this is how I appear to myself.

Recently I found myself walking among a cluster of cute tiny houses. Cute as they were I felt claustrophobic among them. So I headed towards a group of trees. The trees were alive with noises; birds, insects, wild life of all kinds. It was a bit overwhelming so my instinct was to run. Until I noticed a single solitary butterfly.

It came towards me in a coy manner and then darted away. Come follow me. So I did. I ran forward without thought or caution. The butterfly went deeper into the trees but I didn't feel any fear. The Fool reminds us to take action, to move forward without fear and I became that fool.

Without knowing how I got there, I was running among the branches. My butterfly giving constant encouragement... Move forward.... Take action.... Don't be afraid. The butterfly said all these things in it's playful impish manner.

Or was it all just a dream?