Inspiration from Artists

I often come across quotes by different artists that inspire me in my own work. I thought it would be nice to share a different one every once in a while!

“From around the age of six, I had the habit of sketching from life. I became an artist, and from fifty on began producing works that won some reputation, but nothing I did before the age of seventy was worthy of attention. At seventy-three, I began to grasp the structures of birds and beasts, insects and fish, and of the way plants grow. If I go on trying, I will surely understand them still better by the time I am eighty-six, so that by ninety I will have penetrated to their essential nature. At one hundred, I may well have a positively divine understanding of them, while at one hundred and thirty, forty, or more I will have reached the stage where every dot and every stroke I paint will be alive. May Heaven, that grants long life, give me a chance to prove that this is no lie.”

Quotation by Hokusai Katsushika (1780-1849)

Image above : The Great Wave Off Kanagawa, by Hokusai

Driving Phobia

That’s right…I have a slight driving phobia. (Alright, more than slight).There is no rhyme or reason to this. I’ve never been in a fender bender or experienced something traumatic while behind the wheel. I’m pretty comfortable driving as long as I’ve got a passenger to keep me company but when I’m alone in the car it becomes a completely different thing. My friends and family all know that my sense of direction never seems to have fully developed. Perhaps I’m always too distracted by the scenery when I’m driving to absorb fully where I’m going (that was my driving ed teacher’s opinion when I was younger) She said, “Sara. I’ve never been so aware of all the beautiful things outside- the cloud formations, the birds in the trees, or the interesting people on the sidewalks….but keep your eyes ON THE ROAD when you drive!” Hmmm…..she had a point.

Just now I had to move the car from (gasp) one side of the street to the other because tomorrow is street cleaning day. I’m sure it’s comical to everyone reading this – but it caused me serious anxiety getting into that car! I’m happy to report that I found a prime parking spot and my car is happily occupying it’s new space. Now I can breathe a sigh of relief and give myself a pat on the back! Perhaps some day I will learn that I’m really not such a bad driver – just lacking in the driving self-esteem department.

I cannot help but notice the irony: driving can cause me so much anxiety, and yet throwing myself out of a plane a few thousand feet above the earth, I did without a second thought.

I don’t pretend to understand certain parts of myself – but it keeps life entertaining for sure!

Bistro 33 Wins!

I was just at Bistro 33 this afternoon to show some buddies my mural there and say hello to Chef Gary and his wife Deni and I found out that Bistro 33 had won the title of “Best New Queens Restaurant” through Time Out NY!

Thank you for all who voted!

Absence and the heart

Adam is in San Franscico on business and I miss him. At the same time I am excited for some time to be by myself (and of course with some friends). The studio beckons (and the furballs compete for attention!) Today I took 2 long walks…and I focused on my breathing. Despite the crazy drivers in Queens (or anywhere really in NYC) I was able to take many deep breaths and look up. What is up in such an urban area? Up is where the tree branches rustle and sway in the mild Spring breeze…the rhythm of nature was soon interrupted by the harsh voice of a young mother with 3 children (and one on the way) arguing with a local min-mart owner. Hmmm…..breathe some more….Now it is nighttime and I float back and forth between the computer and the studio as I wait for paintings to dry. What a wonderful world!

Picture Above:
by Jim Dine
“Putney Winter Heart #8”


Paintings, photos, & wood burned boxes… now at Art-O-Mat!

While walking along Vernon Blvd in Long Island City last weekend, Adam and I wandered into a neat looking gallery and artisan shop called Art-O-Mat. We were immediately intrigued by the unique combination of paintings, prints, sculpture, cards, and various other handmade objects. There were also books written by local authors and a diverse collection of music from local musicians.

After looking around for a while Adam and I made our way over to the desk area, where a group of people were sitting around engaged in a lively conversation. The idea of an artist’s salon came to mind for both of us. This was clearly a space where different creative folks from the community were able to meet up, share thoughts, and share their latest work. Art-O-Mat is a donated space and all of the people who work there are volunteers. In addition to selling local artist’s work, the space also puts on individual and group artist’s shows.

We met Diane Hendry, who is one of the creative forces behind Art-O-Mat. Her passion for the community and its artists was apparent immediately and her enthusiasm was contagious. Adam and I were both interested in possibly bringing some work over for her to look at as a possible addition to the gallery and gave her the information for our websites. Yesterday we came back with some pieces for Art-O-Mat and had a wonderful time looking over our work with Diane. I now have 2 paintings hanging there, some new wood burned boxes that I’ve started making again, and Adam has a framed photo up as well as numerous matted photos for the art bin.

Adam and I will also be there on some Saturdays volunteering next month and hopefully in the months to come. It’s such a warm and inspiring place to spend some time…stop by if you’re in the area!

46-46 Vernon Blvd
Long Island City