Keeping busy!

My husband and I have been traveling lately for his work.

Good times!

Right now we are in Gustavus, Alaska, which is a tiny town near the entrance of Glacier Bay National Park. Its a lovely town with friendly people and we have been so warmly welcomed here. The beaches and mountains are gorgeous and let me tell you, the trees are out of this world beautiful.

Wow!

While my husband is working, I’ve been keeping myself busy painting lots of new work for my July show.

Varnishing time

Traveling is always great, but I’m looking forward to getting back home to the studio to finish preparing for the show, get some projects done around the homestead (re-chinking the logs and some bathroom and kitchen remodeling, etc )and then head out again for more travels.

I hope to see you at my show. I’ll be at The Art Shop Gallery in Homer, Alaska July 1 for the opening, and then the show will run for the whole month of July. Let me know if you are going to be in town!

Dreaming of Summer Magpies

I’ve been watching our resident magpies keeping themselves busy poking around in the snow for hidden treats, and am reminded once again how entertaining my dapper black-and-white friends can be. I think magpies are the most under-appreciated members of the corvid family, taking a backseat to their raven and crow cousins, and I’m not sure why. I think they are lovely with their long, glossy tails and bright white wing patches, and just as personable as any crow or raven I’ve encountered, though I love them all. For entertainment value you can’t beat a corvid.

Watching them now in the depth of winter has me dreaming of summer and a painting I did for my June show:

Summer Magpies: 18×24 acrylic on canvas, $600. Available for viewing or purchase at The Art Shop Gallery, Homer, AK.

The painting has a dream-like quality that seems especially appropriate now that the warm summer air seems like a lifetime ago and a world away. I’m just glad my magpie friends have stuck around to bring a little cheer on a winter’s day.

Stay cheerful, folks. Summer will be here eventually.

Merry Christmas from Twin Spruce Studios

Iliamna Volcano, across Cook Inlet, view from just down our road
(pic by Ed Gonzalez)

We had a little earthquake yesterday to shake things up a bit, it was a 6.0 centered just on the other side of Cook Inlet behind Iliamna volcano. No worries, all is well, though there was damage to one of my paintings when it was shaken from the wall at the gallery in Homer. Pretty sure I can fix it up good as new, though. #alaskalife, right?

Anyways, Merry Christmas, happy holidays, etc to all of you out there, celebrating whatever it is you celebrate in whatever way you can in this difficult year. Remember in the end, love is all that really matters.

Feeling crabby

Don’t get me started on why I am feeling crabby recently. Instead, let’s focus on the positive:

Dungeness 9 x12 mixed media on canvas, $375.

I had a lot of fun with this 3-dimensional mixed media piece that includes fabric, papier-mâché and acrylic paint elements. I have fond memories of the annual all-you-can-eat Dungeness crab feed picnic when we lived in Sitka. It was a wonderful community event that we all looked forward to all year long. I don’t know if they are still doing it there since I haven’t lived there in a few years, but I sure hope so. It was a great part of the beautiful community that is Sitka, AK. And soooooo tasty!

New Studio!

I am pretty excited! Looks like I will finally have a dedicated studio space instead of making due with the kitchen table, corners of bedrooms and living rooms, and even, this summer, a little cargo trailer parked in the driveway as a studio.

This is it!
The humble beginnings

We bought a 10 x20 shed and plopped it down next to the garden and will be remodeling it into a studio space where I can finally spread out and really get down to business making some art. With this much space I should have space not only to paint, but to do sculpture, fiber arts, and bookmaking, too- all things I enjoy getting creative with.

Right now, it’s like a blank canvas, and I can’t wait to see what it becomes. I look forward to updating our progress as we install windows, French doors, flooring, cabinets, etc, etc…

Twin Spruce: The Story Behind the Name

As you may have read in my “about” page, my family and I live on a lovely piece of property in a tiny village called Ninilchik, on the Kenai Penninsula, Alaska. The property is mostly wild, with a small area cleared for my garden, chickens, and ducks, and a small yard around an old log cabin which we are restoring.

The old cabin and the beginnings of a garden. Excuse the mess, we are just getting started.

If you look to the south of the garden, you see these lovely old Sitka Spruce trees.

Which, upon closer look, are actually two trees of the same age which have grown together into one beautiful twin spruce. I wish I had a better picture because this one doesn’t really show how they have wrapped around each other and joined not only at the trunk but also at several branches. (I will try to get a better shot in a few weeks when the snow is gone.)


We all have become quite attached to our beautiful Twin Spruce trees, and they happen to stand right in the dead center of our property, so they have become for us the natural symbol of our home here. And that is the story behind the name!