Thursday, October 31, 2013

Meet Laarnie and Reis...

the two kids I teach 2nd year 3-d to.  I taught both of them last year in the beginning class and was really impressed with their sense of design, so I encouraged them to come back to me.  They are both juniors, and this is their first assignment of the year.  We used Wilton cake dyes to dye wool yarn with, and set the dye in the microwave with a bit of vinegar (some years I steam the yarns to set the dye)
At the same time they are working with the dyes they are also creating their own knitting needles from dowels and polymer clay.

These are Reis Misaka's yarns and needles...

And here are Laarnie Barcelon's.  

Both where able to choose between knitting a pillow top or a scarf.  So stay turned to see their results.  :)

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Introducing the 2013-2014 Art Students

Alrighty, we are already 8 weeks into our current school year, and it's taken me that long to finish up the art posts from the last school year.  But better late then never!

This was a refresher assignment for my 2nd and 3rd year drawing students, value scales.  My 2nd year kids had to do a 10 step scale and 3rd year a 15 step scale.  It was only a one and two day project but as you can see I was able to get a lot out of them design and effort-wise.

This first one is the work of senior Cathy Luo.  She is incredibly talented and driven and we will be seeing a lot from her this year. 

This next gorgeous piece was done by senior Jasmine Zhao who is coming back to me after an absence of 5 years!  I had her in the 7th grade and have been patiently waiting for her return.  Now you can see why, a gifted young woman. 

We  saw a lot of senior Anne Allan' s pieces last school year, and she is back to show us even more of her amazing skills and designs.  She spent a month at an art camp this summer perfecting those skills.

And lastly we have senior Alex Lee who last year in the beginning class gave us lots of war themed pieces, and it looks as if that will continue to be his focus this year.   Not everyone's cup of tea but it works for him. 

Tuesday, October 29, 2013


Whitney Art Students, pick up 10 extra credit points this weekend by attending the Contemporary Crafts Market at the Pasadena Convention Center, November 1-3.  See more details at  Take your pix with one of the artist's in their booth and show me on Monday.


Monday, October 28, 2013

Shop's Been Updated -My Work

And things are starting to move (probably some early Xmas shoppers), so take a peek at what's left.

Friday, October 25, 2013

Taking Care of Business

Even though I'm pro at sewing on buttons, my husband doesn't want to bother me with something that he taught himself to do in college.  It's hard to find a good man!  :)
But I've got him.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

The Plant Scientist and the Artist

A perfect combination for family fun!  I love getting my children involved in what I'm working on in the studio, in this case the front porch.  The best part was walking the neighborhood with Zach looking for windfall and perhaps plucking a few blossoms.  We didn't have to go far, it was the end of summer so we were able to collect a plethora of goodies.

Zach's Pillowcase for his girlfriend Nicole, and mine below.

A chip off the old block  LOL

Our bundles are ready for the steaming pot of eucalyptus.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Eco-Dye Sources - My Work

The patina on the bottom of a copper pan,

moss growing  in shady areas,

dried flowers,

rust chips,

pounding fresh flowers into your cloth with a hammer

fresh flowers, leaves and tree bark,

the patina off a copper pipe used for rolling fabric around,


all of the above mixed together sometimes  :) and with goodies on top

Of course the water turns color and is affected by what you've bundles along with anything extra you float in the water.  Below is a bunch of windfall from my yard...
that I boiled down and it produced a warm brown color below.

The copper pipes also affect the outside color and the cloth itself.  I even love what happens to the pipe, the patina that it comes out of the dye bath with.  I think I'll drill holes and make chimes with them.

These next 3 are the 3 bundles from above.  The largest bundles was this old cotton pillow case.  I love how it turned out.  I sewed a beautiful trim on the end to cover the ragged edge.
This next one (seen here before I rinsed off the plant matter) was the result of the medium sized bundle, and the green surprise from the copper pipe below.

And this last one was the smallest bundle from above, just a random piece of cotton, but I really love the rich design that resulted.

Monday, October 21, 2013

2013 Senior Tribute

A former alumni from 2010 told my daughter the other day that it's quite a feat to have your artwork featured on my blog.  I've never looked at it that way, but it did make sense after I thought about it.  And as I show off my most talented and near and dear to my heart from the class of 2013, these indeed where the ones that most often popped up.  So now you will be able to connect names with faces.

Let me start off with (from left to right) Michelle Yoshimoto, Priyanka Shah, and Bhavi.  All these young women where in my Beginning 3-d class together and did amazing work, and left a lasting impression on my heart.   And thank you Priyanka for keeping in touch and letting me know you are teaching others to craft in college.  I love that!

Here I am with May Luong who was in both my Beginning 2 and 3-D classes.  May was one of my sweetest, most hardworking students and her work was showcased quite a bit on the blog in both classes because of her original designs as well as her impeccable craftsmanship.  I hope May, that you continue to keep art in your life.

And then there was Fernando "Fernie" Jacinto, one of the nicest young men I've ever taught with, and a heart of gold.  Almost every piece he made was dedicated to his girlfriend.  What a lucky girl she is!  And thank you Fernie for always giving me all your effort.

Here I am with powerhouse Alice Zhang, super artist extraordinaire.  Alice came to me 3 years ago with amazing skills that she had perfected on her own; quickly becoming one of the top artists in both 2 and 3-D.  Alice will go on to do great things thru her art.  Knock them dead kiddo, and keep me posted.

And you saw me post almost everything this beautiful young woman made, Tiffany Lee, in Beginning and Intermediate 3-D art.  What an incredible, out of the box thinker she is, always blowing us out of the water with her work.  I so looked forward to seeing her finished pieces.  She is on her way to New York to join her sister Michelle in art school.  Your instructors are going to adore you Tiffany!

And what a pair these two where, Halah Elsahhar and Belinda Wu.  Let me tell you about Halah first.  She came to me in the 7th grade in 3-d art and really struggled to keep up with the class.  Sometimes it's just really hard for the 7th graders to adjust to middle school.  But starting in the 8th grade Halah began to thrive and excel so that by the time she was a junior and came back to 2-d art, she rose to the top very quickly with her artist talent.  Then again she came back for a second year in 2-d and was a shining star.  You have seen many of her pieces on the blog this last year.

Belinda Wu came out of nowhere her senior year and challenged my Beginning 2-d class and went straight into Intermediate 2-d.  She is probably one of the biggest talents I've ever taught, and is the hardest worker I've ever known.  Belinda's work was featured in every post I did for the Intermediate class, and she sailed into Art Center in Pasadena so seamlessly in this, her first year of collage.  Those instructors are going to love you Belinda!!

Here you can see I work these poor children to the bone, even on the last day before winter break where in all their other classes they are chilling and celebrating.  Not so in my classes.  We work everyday all period long!!  Nida Fatima will always have my heart.  She came to me in the 7th grade and caught my attention with her sweetness and kindness, her work ethic, maturity and her designs.  I was fortunate to have her again as a junior and senior in my Intermediate and Advance 3-d classes.  I will miss your sweet smile every morning on your way in the door. 

I love Stella Park, one of the sweetest, most sincere students.  A heart of gold, and incredible artist talent.  She took 3 of my classes, Ceramics I & II, as well as Beginning 3-d, and she excelled in all.  I will miss your presence in my classes Stella, you have such a good aura, and you always make others feel good around you. 

Look at these two nutty knitters  :)  working their hands to the bone for me, Ashley Chowdhury and Sheila San Agustin.  Both these women where two of my top art students of the year.  They also had 3 classes with me, Beginning 2-d and Beginning and Intermediate 3-d.  You saw their work constantly featured on my blog in both arenas, and Ashley is off to FIDM in L.A. on a scholarship and Sheila is at CSULB, hopefully turning the art department on it's head, and if she isn't, she is in some other venue impressing the heck out of everyone.  Both these girls had an insatiable appetite for learning, for working hard, for being the best they could be.  I will miss you both a lot.  Your work delighted me, and you both were an absolute joy in my classes.  Thank you for all you gave me.

Gentle, sweet, shy, Laura Kadi.  I bet I scared you to death when I had you way back in the 7th grade.  You were very brave to come back to me  for two additional classes in the 2-d arena  :)   And I'm so glad you did.  The sensitivity you poured into your art pieces, especially your acrylic self-portrait was beautiful to watch.   And I'm thrilled you decided to go into Art History as your major, and then hopefully onto Restoration work in a major museum one day. You will be fabulous with your art background and your smarts.  Believe in yourself sweet girl, and enjoy the ride!   

OMG, one of my favorite students of all time, Kevin Tang.  Yeah, I know, I'm not supposed to say that, teacher's are not supposed to play favorites, but guess what, we do.  I love you Kevin with all my heart, you have one of the coolest, most unique personalities I've ever experienced and I enjoyed every second with you, although, 7th grade was a bit challenging  LOL.  Kevin took 5 of my classes over the span of his career here at Whitney, Beginning and Intermediate 2-d, and Beginning, Intermediate and Advanced 3-d.  WOW!!  I think I've only had 3 other students who have that record, Caroline Ma (class of 09), Rita Labib (class of 2013), and Karisma Dev (class of 2015).  Kevin started to shine as an 8th grader with me, showing tremendous potential for growth in the arts.  Then coming back as a junior he just took off with it and made so many important pieces that you might remember seeing on the blog.  All of us here at Whitney were pulling for Kevin to go into Fashion Design or a related field, but instead he followed his parents wishes and is up at CSUSB majoring in Stats, I believe, another favorite subject of his.  No matter where you go or what you do Kevin, you will thrive because that's who you are, and if you ever make your way back into the arts I will jump for joy!
So I send you off with lots of love, and I'm so proud of you!!

And then there's Eddie Ponce', one of the biggest pains in my you know what for the past 2 years in Ceramics I & II.  Only kidding Eddie, you were one of my greatest challenges with your strong personality, your confidence and your super smart intellect.  You definitely gave me a run for my money, but hey, that's what I get the big bucks for, right?  LOL  Just know Eddie, that you made such an impression on me that I will never forget you.  You made me laugh almost everyday, you pissed me off some too, but know that I love you, miss you, have lots of funny antidotes to share about us with my new students, and I think of you always.

Here's my girl Rita Labib, a striking young woman who just based on her looks, stands out in a crowd.  But that's not the only place she shines, she is a magician with a camera and already has her own business working with models and celebrities.  Rita also took 5 of my classes, Ceramics I & II, and Beginning, Intermediate, and Advanced 3-d, and won the top art student of the year award.  Rita is a dynamo and a powerhouse; once she gets going there is no stopping her.  She didn't like rules and followed her own path as she built her assignments for me.  Because of her, she inspired me with a whole new array of ideas on assignments I already teach, plus she gave me a lot of new ideas too.  The student teaching the teacher , I love that!!  And I love you Rita girl, hang in there, I know you hate the additional rules you are facing in college, but give your instructors a chance to see your brilliance, then they might let you fly.   You are an incredible talent, and I know you will go far.  I miss you tremendously, your presence filled my room like none other, except for maybe Eddie and Kevin  LOL  

There are so many others I'd like to give shout outs too, and I thought I had pix of you guys but I couldn't find them.  So to Nikki Shah (I love you so much and your family too, you are a brilliant artist), Emily Yang, (you are the man, you are a force to be reckoned with, one of the most capable humans I've ever encountered, thank you so much for helping me with those unruly 7th graders), Zach Rank (coolest cat I know), David Lee (make me a proud mama at UPENN), Kevin Leoung (Ceramic superstar, the clay loves you man), Martin Yang (get off the computer and go get l___), Sally Choi (crazy woman, crazy talented in the arts, believe in yourself, and quit getting into trouble), Ruth & Sathwich (you guys were a trip and a half, loved getting to know you both), Phoebe Liu (incredible art talent, thank you for everything last year, I love you), David Awada (almost as cool as Zach, you were a kick in the pants, so much fun getting to know you), Lilith Huang (I think the clay loves you even more then Kevin LOL, beautiful work, thank you), Hylie Jeffries (crazy energy plus, find a way to channel it), Emmerline Kim (have loved you from day one in 7th grade), Andre'Martin (you occupy a big place in my heart, so behave yourself, you know what I'm talking about), Brendon Lim (you were a dream like your big sis), Sophia Lu (it was so satisfying to watch you enjoy the clay and make all those extra pieces), Sandra Osuji (I really wish you had started clay with me earlier, you made some really cool pieces), Binny Shah (such a gentleman, always coming to my rescue),  and Daniel Tai (such a sweetheart, it was so nice to work with you again), and I can't forget Joyce Lee (you slaved yourself to the bone organizing all those beads for me, thank you so much, I was so sad you weren't able to fit in my next class, you are such a great talent and I enjoyed every second of working with you, and I will miss your kindness and grace).
And there's more....
to Julia Faith Chanco (I will never forget that big mama of a quilt you made, your positive, good spirit, your constant love, and the hours we spent after school gossiping about everybody and everything, you are forever in my heart), Amy Hsu (crazy woman, so glad you talked me into letting you back into my good graces, you produced many awesome pieces last year, but don't go changing, I love you just the way you are LOL), Angela Wan (you produced so many cool pieces for me, and you were one of the only seniors to stand up to me, I love your spirit, I didn't know you had it in you, use that more often :), Jessica Barnett and Mylan Jefferson (it was an absolute pleasure working with you both, thank you for constantly doing and being your best, I admire you two greatly).  Leah Huang and Eugenia Jacob ( both of you were featured many times on the blog for your beautiful designs and your superb craftsmanship, thank you both for giving me your all everyday), Kasie LeNguyen (you are so slow but so good at design and crafting, I sure hope you go on to take more art classes, but speed it up woman!), and Celine Phong ( you are such a quiet presence but you pack a mighty punch when you'd turn in your assignments, plus you are such a sweetheart).  Brianna Johnson (thank you for all the hours you spent for me, I appreciated you so much, plus it was wonderful to work with you as a student as well), Helen Baek (you are a natural born artist, take more classes, your designs were outstanding), Philip Hwang (it was hard to watch you struggle in the beginning with the clay, but I loved your gumption and how you hung in there and never gave up!), Mehar Maju (you are a super creative soul, I really enjoyed getting to see your cool ideas), Allen Min (listen to your father, get off the computer and get a date!  LOL), Louis Manuel (what a fine young man you are, it was a delight working with and getting to know you), and last but not least, Lauren De Belen (sweet and shy little one in the 7th grade, I'm so glad you were brave enough to come back to me, I really enjoyed working with you again).
  I hope I didn't leave anyone out, and if I did, you probably know the reason.  Enough said.

 Thank you all for your hard work and the beauty that you let me display for Open House.

As we take our last walk together... 
and give each other the biggest, tightest hugs (with Sam Arias)...
and as I put everything away and clean up the room for one more summer...
I know that Room 18 will never be the same, ever again.

I look forward to seeing where life will take all of you so please keep in touch.
I send you off with lots of love and affection.
Make me proud!!!