Monday, October 8, 2007

Painted Words and Written Pictures

(Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators)
I went with my friend to our first conference put on by SCBWI called... Painted Words and Written Pictures

We had such a good time. Here are a few highlights.

Here is one of the books I purchased and had signed by Aliki.

She was (and so were all the authors/illustrators) so supportive, motivating, and encouraging.
This is a quilt someone had made for Aliki. She scanned some of her books and printed them out on fabric and presented her with the quilt at the conference.On all my notes I sketched the speaker. Above is Aliki (see photograph below for real picture)

Below is Yuyi Morales

(She is the younger woman in the photo above)

I just love looking back at my notes and sketches. Making a sketch and capturing a few phrases really helps me get a feel for their message.

Yuyi had such a great speech for us.

It was Entertaining, Enlightening, and Encouraging

(If you double click on these pictures, they should enlarge.)

These were two pages Yuyi handed out. The first some prayers her "illustrator" character, Senor Tlalocan, says while he is working on his art.This one below is helpful as are a couple of my favorite tips.

"Start small. Let the thing that catches you first be your springboard. Starting with the big concept, you risk your mind to shrink."

"Let your impulses guide you."

" Relax and Trust Myself"

Investigation - Discovery - Creation

On the second day my friend and I took a long walk around the campus of Cal State Fresno in the morning and then headed off to this Revitalized River Center.

San Joaquin River Parkway - Heritage House (circa 1890's)

The path that leads to this house is through an area that is currently focusing on extensive habitat restoration. It winds through the river bottomland that was formerly the Jensen River Ranch. The trail has four "larger-than-life" homes of animals found in the and around the river.

One of the focus' of the center is the birds in the area. We enjoyed the teaching questions posted about.

They had a really interesting Quilt Interactive Station on bird's nests. Each quilt is the size of different birds.

You can see below the sign says "Kids...Open up these quilts and see what's inside!"

There are different size quilts that coordinate with the different sized birds they belong to.

The Hummingbird quilt had a hand knitted nest attached.

Here is another quilt with the River Ecology as a theme.

This is a handmade water color book depicting a river environment. Very cool.

Below is quote from a new book written and illustrated by Aliki on William Shakespeare, I purchased at the conference. Who sums things up better.

"And this our life...
Finds tongues in trees, books in the running brooks,
Sermon in the stones, and good in everything."
...William Shakespeare, "As You Like It"

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Ledger Art - (a.k.a. Indian sketchbook)

History and Art

There is so much to learn....
Our last docent training was on the History of Native American Art.
Kate Morris was the Santa Clara University Professor who spoke to us.

She started with the earliest Indian art that has been found on paper. The Indians used Ledger books gotten from the military. She took us all the way through to current Indian artists.

It is so cool to think that Indians used these Ledger books as sketchbooks

Beginning in the early 1860s, Plains Indian men adapted their representational style of painting to paper in the form of accountants ledger books. Traditional paints and bone and stick brushes used to paint on hide gave way to new implements such as colored pencils, crayon, and occasionally water color paints. Plains artists acquired paper and new drawing materials in trade, or as booty after a military engagement, or from a raid. Initially, the content of ledger drawings continued the tradition of depicting of military exploits and important acts of personal heroism already established in representational painting on buffalo hides and animal skins. As the US government implemented the forced relocation of the Plains peoples to reservations, for all practical purposes completed by the end of the 1870s, Plains artists added scenes of ceremony and daily life from before the reservation to the repertoire of their artwork, reflecting the social and cultural changes brought by life on the reservation within the larger context of forced assimilation.

Contemporary Native American Artist
This painting below is now in the de Saisset Museum.
It was added to their collection to represent that Native American Indians are contemporary artists as well.

Frank LaPena

"We Are All Sacred"
29.5" x 44" Lithograph

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Haiku to You

Creative Mantras

I'm just trying to

try...both exciting and fun!

Chanted Jujuart

It's just pigment and

paper...if you mess up, right?

Chanted Ms. Poppins

Chanting Together

We support the artist's mind!

Created with Heart

Thanks Praire Poppins

and...Creative Mom Podcast

Create Share Support

Just working on a few Haikus at Creative Mom Podcast!
5 syllables
7 syllables
5 syllables
And at the same time taking a deep breath each time I try something hard....
like painting my face in watercolors!

"Julie in Giverney"


(1998 - 2007)
Tender, Sweet, Gentle
My Cuddly Calico
We'll Miss Her Ways!

Monday, October 1, 2007


Fuzzy and Soft
Practicing Textures in Watercolor
This little one I made up from my imagination and a compilation of some of the bears I've owned.