A dry channel through which water flows intermittently and irregularly. Kind of like this blog.

My art is an infectious need for me, sometimes a burden but most often a blessing.

This blog is about me and my obsessions, my loves, my need to create and my need of JUNK. I'm addicted to thrift stores, estate sales, flea markets and all roads leading off the beaten track to discover that perfect piece of junk. I recycle old license plates, old shovels, wheelbarrows, saw blades and anything else that's funky using my hand held plasma cutter. I love working with steel, sculpting, photography, watercolor painting, stained glass, and turning everyday utilitarian objects into art. Junked cars ~ I will always veer off the path to search out the beautiful wrecked Arroyo JunKers throughout Arizona, New Mexico and anywhere else the road may lead. When I'm not searching for those JunKers

Saturday, March 31, 2012

Santa Fe Splendor

I've finally returned from what seems like a month long trip..... since my show mid month I feel like I haven't stopped.... I driven more than I care to, shopped more than I should have and missed working in the shop more than I thought.  Many miles and $$$ passed through my recent trip to Santa Fe.  My friend Anna joined me the last five days of the trip and showing a newcomer all the Splendor of the "Land of Enchantment" was fun - she was thoroughly Cultured and SantaFied and had sticker shock more times than she cares to recall, especially buying gorgeous textiles at Serets and Sons - a must see if you go.
Anna purchased the prize of the day - a stunning Suzani bedspread !!!  I did drool on it a bit however.

Then we were off to the wonderful churches that are a stones throw from each other - each so different from the next. 

The stairway's carpenter, whoever he was, built a magnificent structure. The staircase has two 360 degree turns and has no visible means of support. Also, it is said that the staircase was built without nails—only wooden pegs. Questions also surround the number of stair risers compared to the height of the choir loft and about the types of wood and other materials used in the stairway's construction. The design was innovative for the time and some of the design considerations still perplex experts today.

A budding tree with hundreds of rosaries hanging from it.

A huge bronze leaf as tall as me.  Barry... this one's for you!!

On to the Plaza for YES... more shopping

El Santuario de Chimayo

We drove up to Chimayo to see my favorite of all churches and collect some dirt from the blessed hole in the chapel called  "el pocito," which means the little well, a small pit of holy adobe-colored dirt that some say possesses the power to cure. Just one touch, say those who believe, and cancer might go into remission, an injured knee might heal, and leukemia might be held off long enough to witness a child's birth. Along the wall hang crutches that are no longer needed, material proof from those who say they've been helped.   I bought a beautiful 3ft tall St. Francis wooden sculpture that I've always wanted - forgetting we were driving a Prius. We did manage to shove one more thing in it.

Lunch at the beautiful "Rancho de Chimayo".... sipping prickly pear lemonade.
 and one last stop to see the beautiful sculpture of "Our Lady of Guadalupe" 
I guess it's always a religious experience in "The Land of Enchantment" and I'm not even religious.  You'll always leave lighter of your cash but richer for the experience!

I'll be back to the grind on Monday finishing up on some commissions from the last show and I do hope to catch up with all of you soon.  I know you've all been busy!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Road Trip

The show last weekend was a great success – sold a good amount, gained three commissions and others that say they will contact me with some other work they would like.  I usually take those with a grain of salt, because you don’t hear from them often, it's a good exit line when they have sticker shock and can’t afford things – but maybe I’ll be surprised. 

My Mom came from Santa Fe last week to my event.  I think she's only been to one in 5 years!  We had great weather Fri/Sat, but sadly got rained out Sunday.  Luckily, I made the decision to tear down Sat. night as we had 50 mile an hour winds that would have leveled my tent and smashed up some of my art.  I hated making that decision and not doing the three days, but I think it was the right one.  Believe it or not it’s draining to converse for 10 hours a day for these shows.  In real life sometimes I don't see other people for weeks - just the hubby and pet clan, so it can be exhausting, but it’s a good exhaustion. 

Thursday my mom and I hit the open road for a little "girls road trip" back to Santa Fe and we will see what trouble we can get into – with money in my wallet …. Anything can happen!

With two trips planned and getting these other works done I’ll be busy.   So, I look forward to a leisurely drive back to Santa Fe and I'm sure I'll find some Arroyo Junkers to share with you when I return.  It's been too long since I posted those.

Have a wonderful week everyone I’ll be catching up later.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Shovel Art #8

I truly have loved creating these short shovel sculptures on juniper bases.  In fact, I'm taking them to the show this weekend and I'm wondering do I really want them to sell!  That's crazy right?
Like I've mentioned before I don't create anything that I wouldn't want to see in my home or in my garden everyday.  It really is a struggle for me when a piece sells - I feel like I'm losing a child, like a piece of me is lost forever.  Maybe because there is usually only one - it won't be duplicated exactly or mass produced or purchased in any department store and I always wonder each time if I'll be able to do it again.  I've always been drawn to and surrounded myself with art that is out of the ordinary, quirky, fun and reminds me of nature and when I look at it, it just makes me feel at home.  That's what looking at these sculptures does for me - makes me feel comfortable and at home.  It's hard to give that up!
I know I'm rambling, but I would love to hear how you other artists feel about your art.... 
If you didn't have to make a living off of your art and money wasn't an issue would you surround yourself with it?  
Are you sad when you sell it?
Or am I just weird?  Ok... don't answer that one!

Don't forget !! 
If you're in the Phoenix area stop on over at the Botanical Gardens off of Galvin Parkway 
Members Preview Day - Friday / March 16 / 7 a.m. - 5 p.m. 
Open to General Public - Saturday/ March 17 / 7 a.m. - 5 p.m. AND Sunday / March 18 / 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Come say Hi and Maybe, just Maybe I'll sell ya something!  ha ha

Monday, March 12, 2012

Glass Flowers

This weekend - because I couldn't focus solely on the things I have to do for the show this Weekend I started creating some recycled flowers from crystal dishes, candle holders, plates all crazy stuff you can find at the thrift store.  See how I manage to justify my thrift store addiction and my need to create!
My garden always fills up fast when I'm working on something new - you know gotta work out all the bugs of how to attach things.  Can't weld glass, but need to attach to steel.... what hardware holds this or that...it's all a process.  I consider all these prototypes of sort, but in the end my garden is all the better for it.  
Maybe someday I can stop creating art that is a real pain to ship/move and load!....but 
if truth be told I can't wait to get back to the thrift store and buy some more junk.  

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Metal Nesting

This week I've been having fun creating some birds nests garden stakes - I'm using up some of the scraped steel, barbed wire, cut out flowers that I just let sit around and gather rust..... steel always looks better with that beautiful rusty patina.  
I really enjoy just going out to create something, but not really having a plan as to what I'm gonna do.  For me, I think that's actually better as it helps me to be more creative and just go with the flow.  It may be why I'm not a fan of commissioned work.  I get all upset inside just thinking about it because someone has an expectation of what they want and all I know is what I want.  Basically, if I can't enjoy it in my house first I just won't make it.  I guess I create this art just for me and if it works out and you happen to like it also - Awesome I'll sell it to you.  Soooooo, rarely will I do a commission because of that fact.  Is that weird?  So many artist do commission and I commend them on that, but it just makes me crazy.
Can you see the little beaks sticking up out of the nest? 
Below it shows their entire head.

My show is next week ..... whoa did I just say NEXT WEEK!!! Yikes.  I need to start making my list of things to gather, fix, arrange, clean up.  All those last minute details that you push aside and then you HAVE to get them finished.   My mom's coming for the show so that means I have to clean house on top of it!  Arrggg

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Pushin' Up Daisies

I've been working on some new garden art for the upcoming Phoenix Botanical Gardens Show on March 16, 17-18th (16th only if your a member) and since it's like Spring time over here and glorious weather I figured what better subject than Spring Flowers.  I've got old barbed wire, wooden hearts and cut leaves to make any garden more inviting.
As with any new thing I make I'm always trying to figure out how I'm gonna display these crazy things.  Most everything i do is recycling so I scoured the wood pile and found what hopefully will work as a stand for these crazy daisies.  It all painted and ready for the show and didn't cost me a dime.

So, do come down and say HELLO if you're in the Phoenix area and if you're looking for beautiful plants that's the place to be.

Takin' the back road from Greer to Morenci was gorgeous. This was waiting at the end.

Takin' the back road from Greer to Morenci was gorgeous.  This was waiting at the end.
Alpine Cliff Jumper

Don't you just love bugs! My first car.... but RED.

Don't you just love bugs!  My first car.... but RED.
Lamy, NM

This was a great old Studebaker Truck in Lamy, NM . It has seen better days. I love Lamy,

This was a great old Studebaker Truck in Lamy, NM .  It has seen better days.  I love Lamy,
Studebaker in Lamy, NM