Wednesday, December 20, 2017


clay, glaze & oxides

This has been the second year to try out this assignment with my newbie clay kids.
It's the very first time I put clay in the student's hands at beginning of year,
and it's love at first touch
ha ha
I've got them hooked for life!
And each one of my students from last years Ceramics I class (2016-2017) 
is represented on this piece.
Last year we gifted the chimes to our Vice Principal's secretary Cindy Bailey.
This year we presented it to our beloved finance secretary Donna Main.
Merry Xmas Donna!
We love you
Each student was required to make 2 tiles, 
one circular & one rectangular.
Stamping was required on both as well as a stamped word of text.
Of course a hole at top and bottom for stringing.

And then as a finish,
they were required to do at least 2 glazing operations.
Many of the students chose to stain with oxides first then to glaze with Transparent,
others stained or glazed first then put glass shards into crevices.
And some did a half/half thing.
We are already planning out how to finish off this years chimes.
We are thinking half of them into the Sawdust Firing, 
the other half into a bright glaze for contrast.

Our next recipient?
It's a surprise.

I want to send out a great big thank you to senior Lynette Lee
who very patiently and carefully strung the chimes for me,
and to
Alum Jordan Joyce,
on a visit, 
who was put to work arranging them.
hee hee

Tuesday, December 19, 2017


Recently I had too much fun giving my son and his fiance their first watercolor lesson.
It was something they both wanted to learn how to do,
so I was thrilled to be able to do this for them.
Day 1 I took them thru an 11 hour lesson plan that I take my own students thru,
but I was able to get them thru it in 2 hours.
Then they both chose a subject on their phone and spent another hour and a half 
testing out their new skills.

They did pretty darn good for their first time.
And enjoyed it so much that they asked for a follow-up lesson
over the Thanksgiving weekend.
How about that?

We were thinking of tackling this still life below, 
but ended up eating the poms instead.
ha ha

Sunday, December 17, 2017


Fiber scraps from school and dryer lint 
make for a cozy home for the winter under the cabin's  porch eaves.

Thursday, December 14, 2017


are in order for my first born,
 and his beautiful fiance Nicole.
We raised a toast to their engagement this past Thanksgiving with family.
Zach's father Inars and sister Danie,
 and Jim and I are so thrilled to welcome Nicole,
her brother and sister-in-law,
and parents into our family.
This is their 4th year with each other and they are so happy and good together.
They already share a home in the San Fernando Valley
and are slowly making it their own.
I'm filled with so much joy that my child has found someone who loves him so 
and will take great care with his heart.

only one more pup to go!
ha ha

Tuesday, December 12, 2017


Sometimes really bad things happen to really good people,
like senior Christian Balbido.
He took his coil pot home to put the finishing touches on it,
and his mom accidently moved it,
and it broke apart in her hands.
Both mom and son were devastated.
But what I have learned from making and teaching art for so many years,
there is always a plan "B".
 When life hands gives you lemons,
 make lemonade.
Christian and I pow-wowed today over his dilemma,
so make sure you stay tuned to see what he will create from this chaos.

Sunday, December 10, 2017


At the time this humongous creature was crawling across my classroom floor,
I had no idea where it came from,
and what it could be living on since it was so plump.
But then I saw a leftover bag from our Eco-Dye plant based assignment
and figured he came out of that.
What I am certain of is how fascinated and thrilled our kids were that he was visiting for the day.
Spiders and cockroaches in my room never get the same response.
ha ha!

Monday, December 4, 2017


photosensitive fabric, flat objects, polyester fiberfill, perle cottons, and the sun

We are getting close to the end of the 2016-2017 school year posts,
and every year it takes me longer and longer to finish.
So I just wanted to put out a great big thank you to last year's kids, 
and also to this year's students who are waiting so patiently to see their art on the blog.

These gorgeous pillows are the 4th Quarter Final projects of my talented 3-D Beginners.
They all really enjoyed this assignment 
and the results they were able to achieve with this fairly expensive photosensitive fabric
were a valuable learning experience.
I order it from Dharma Trading and even though they have the lowest prices,
it still costs a bundle per student.
But I feel the amount of effort they put into them 
along with their creative embellishments are so worth it.

This first beauty is the work of 8th grader Selina Luo.
She is really able to show off her design & embroidery skills here.

Junior Margaret Yu,
who has had impeccable craftsmanship skills since the 7th grade Art Wheel class,
 created this next one.
We all loved both her solar design and her delicate embroidery.

Next we have 11th grader Samantha Tan
doing this impressive crest in a striking Primary Color Scheme.

Senior Sara Woo made this very soft and feminine piece above
while 8th grader James Lara created a tribute to singer Prince below.

And we end with junior Lynette Lee's incredible pillow.
I was so sad to know that she wasn't able to sign up for the 2nd year of 3-d,
but then realized at the beginning of this year I was able to get her as my T.A.
because her schedule got goofed up.
With her ridiculous artistic talent,
she has been invaluable to me.
I have been able to entrust her with my most difficult and challenging art projects
that needed my attention,
but that I didn't have time to get to.
She has strung the group chime assignment from last year 
so that we can gift it to one of our dear staff at Xmas.
She is carving rubber stamps with tiny intricate designs for the 7th graders to stamp with,
and right now I have her watercoloring my porcelain clay Xmas gifts I made for the staff.
Lynette has the lightest touch and a terrific color sense.
Everything I give her to do turns into a work of art.
Santa is going to be very good to her this year.
hee hee.
And I feel very blessed to get to work with her again .
Thank you Lynette for all the help and effort you give me everyday!
You are very precious to me.


For Mother's Day 2016,
my son drove me all over tarnation to find the perfect supplies
 to build my own Fairy Garden
 If you click on that link you can see it in it's early stages.
Since that time it has morphed into this unrecognizable planter below.
The good news is that it loves it's location,
the bad news is...
well I guess there isn't any other then I can't find my fairy or her home anymore.
So this weekend I gave her a trim and there she be with her birds,
 pumpkin and clay tepee (used to be a roof over a porcelain birdhouse that broke,
but I couldn't bare to throw it away.
I think tonight I'll put up a closer view so you can see her better.
I guess it's still a bit overgrown,
but it's happy.

Thursday, November 30, 2017


I'm a bit tardy with this post,
but I really wanted to share what fun we had this Halloween with our little guy Syd.
Pop Pop decked out his daughter's house with so much scary goodness.
Lights, music and eerie noises delighted the neighbor's little ones,
but it was Pop Pop that was the biggest hit in his chair.
While I was out trick-or-treating with Syd,
Jim was giving out treats.
Syd had the coolest house on the block.
Of course Mommy had a tough time getting Syd's costume on.
There was lots screaming and crying,
but promises of much chocolate to come if he put on his suit.
He finally did but his Daddy and I were only able to get a few shots of him 
in his Paw Patrol costume before he pulled off his hat.
I tried snapping as fast as I could .
And man oh man did he come home with his pail full of treats.
I'm hoping he will remember this.
Us parentals had way too much fun and joy watching our little guy do his thing.

Wednesday, November 29, 2017


About 6 or so years ago I found textile artist Deborah Lacativa 
and fell in love with her and her work.
I wrote to her to introduce myself and told her about my young 3-D students.
She graciously sent me a box of her delightful hand dyed linen pieces
that I gave to my students to work with.
From each of those pieces I cut a small piece for myself to stitch with alongside my young ones.
Of course my students finished their pieces 
but it wasn't until this summer that I finally finished mine.
I was tremendously moved and inspired by her art pieces at the time,
so Deb,
this is what I came up with.
Thank you for sharing with us,
and letting me learn from you.
And I dedicate this to you and your generosity.

I don't know about all you stitchers out there,
but I carry my work with me wherever I go.
I have with me at all times at least 3-4 bags with different ongoing projects
that I toss onto the floorboard of my car.
They get accidently stepped on,
spilled on,
tossed into the backseat when I travel with a passenger,
generally abused to the max.
The bag that held this baby traveled in both my car & mountain jeep
for the past 5 years until I finally finished it this summer.
It went in with me every time my hubby and I went into Denny's for breakfast/dinner
(once a week).
So over the years I was working on it, 
water spilled on it or it picked up condensation from my water glass on the table,
and some of the fabrics bled a bit on the white linen backdrop
(see the turquoise piece above, and some of the pinks below).
But I felt it added to the look of the piece and kind of tied everything together.
It was this summer that I used the Kantha stitch to quilt 
(in the white areas only)
the finished piece to the light turquoise border.
I used a slightly off white #12 perle cotton thread.
Then I put it in the washing machine on my most gentle cycle and laundered it
(cuz it was pretty filthy after all those years of working on it)
It did a bit of shrinking and fraying which I really liked,
and I received the nicest compliment from my harshest critic,
 my daughter.
 She thought it was pretty cool.
Oh yeah!
I'll have to mount it now for wall hanging.
Hope I can get it done by Xmas for my girlie.


An edible gift from sweet 7th grader Kameryn Mitchell.
I'm thinking the biology teacher might want to teach with these sculptural forms.
They are all yours Aileen Perry,
but I might have to try one of them first.
I hear they are delicious!
I'm always telling my students there is art all around you,
you just have to look.