Thursday, October 23, 2014


I am proud to be included among 18 contemporary rug hooking artists who will be represented in "Hooked Art 2014" this weekend.  The exhibit will be in The Gallery at the University of Connecticut at Stamford. 

The reception will be held October 25 from 1-4 p.m.  The show will run from October 25-November 29.  Please take the chance to see how these artists have taken rug hooking to another level. 

The exhibition catalog of the show (pictured above) is available at Blurb with a free preview.  Just click here.

I'm also proud to announce that the Plein Air Hooking Artists have been invited to exhibit at Sauder Village Rug Hooking Week 2015.  We will be working hard to put on a great exhibit and to encourage others to join us in our outdoor hooking adventures.  More news will follow as the date nears.

As well as looking at work at the Green Mountain Rug Hooking Guild show (reported on last week), I made a few purchases.

"Barely Hooked" by Rae Reynolds Harrell

I had the chance to stop by Rae Harrell's booth and chat for a short time.  She has put together a book portraying various artists' interpretations of the nude.  There are beautiful photos and close-ups which led me to spend an entire afternoon looking through this wonderful collection.  To purchase, you can go to Rae's site.

I also had a chance to meet Melina White who runs Seal Harbor Rug Company. There was a wonderful collection of colorful hand-dyed New Zealand rug wool. 

I will be having my right wrist operated on for a fully torn ligament in January and the surgeon said I will not be able to use my hand for three months, yes, months. Hearing that hurt more than the torn ligament.  

I decided to look on the bright side and take the opportunity to learn to work with my left hand. Melina was kind enough to let me try the punch-needle hooking which will be much easier to do one-handed.  I'm looking forward to working on a larger rug along with some smaller pieces.

I will be reporting on "Hooked Art 2014" after the weekend event and wish everyone a great day.

Saturday, October 18, 2014


 I was hanging halfway out the window to get this shot of a fire hydrant sculpture as we drove through Shelburne, Vermont.  I've photographed it before but still love it!

I am up in Vermont and had the chance to see the Green Mountain Rug Hooking Guild's show on Wednesday.  Here are a few of the many pieces I saw with a short mention of why they attracted my eye.  There were some lighting issues with the camera shots, so some of the works may not be accurate in coloring.

Close-up of a portion of "Just Around the Bend" by Rae Harrell
This piece is all about color and movement.  Pure joy!  I like the black and white sections mixed among the bright colors.

"Ship Figurehead" by Dale Young-Wheeler
This reminded me of the days my parents took me to Shelburne Museum when I was a child.  I always loved the building that held the figureheads from ships.  They look so majestic.  It just brought back great memories.

"Passion" by Kris McDermott
The combination of rug hooking and braiding is extremely well executed in this piece.  It just brings out creativity and makes me want to try something new.

Close-up of "Words of Wisdom" by Emmy Robertson
The lettering on this was crisp and clear and the sayings on it make one think.  Anyone who rug hooks can appreciate the time that went into all that lettering.

"Guardian" by Jennifer Davey
The eyes on this are piercing, yet the greenery and florals around the face give a softer feel to it making one feel safe.  The name fits the piece.  

"Gee Raff--Eye See You II"  by Cyndy Duade
I really felt emotion from this.  There is a sadness to the eye that really hit me.

"Two Faces" by Donna Lee Boudoins
Are these two different people or two sides of the same person?  The piece just brought out questions for me.

"Abstract Ottoman 2"  by Mary Lee O'Connor
My feet would be quite happy if I had this ottoman in my living room.

"For All We Have Under the Sky"  by Sue Burton-Kelly
This cheerful seaside scene reminded me of summer vacations on the coast.  The figures look as if they are jumping for joy.

Section of "Birches II" by Jen LaVoie
I just wanted to be in this scene when I saw it.  I like how the shadows on the bottom act as a pathway into the rest of the artwork. 

"Aries Woman" by Mariah Krauss
There is a real glow to this work.  I get the feeling of wires and electricity running through this piece and bringing it to life.  Mesmerizing.

"Vaulting I York Minster"  by Roslyn Logsdon
The lines, the arcs, the patterns, the shadows.  Architectural features turned into art.

"Solitude" by Karen Miller
I like the mixed-media in this work. It is as if you are sitting in your favorite chair with a cup of coffee looking out your window with a fantastic view of the water.  A calming piece.

"Three Graces" by Rachelle LaBlanc
I kept going back to look at this piece.  It has an angelic, etheral quality.  There is a delicacy and innocence, yet I kept thinking maybe they are sharing a secret the viewer doesn't know about.  A peaceful simplicity with a storytelling effect.

"Butterflies are Free"  by Peg Irish
This piece actually waves (you can get a sense of this in the shadow) bringing the feeling of flight to the depicted butterflies.  The top butterflies extend beyond the border of the work giving the viewer the sense of their flying away.

"Lady of the Lake" by Sandra Grant
Lots of texture as if this bird has had his/her feathers ruffled a bit while catching that fish.  The textures pop out quite a ways from the background giving a real sense of roundness to the bird.

"Andy's Barn"  by Natacha Liuzzi
Just loved the colors and the depiction of the vertical and horizontal aspects of the barn siding against the rolling look of the land and sky.

We are all different and various things draw us to certain pieces of art.  Color? Texture? Emotion?  Memories?  Next time you view a piece of art try to find what drew you to it and have a great day.

Saturday, October 4, 2014


This week our yard was filled with the flight and songs of the local birds.  They swooped past the deck with amazing grace and speed.  One hummingbird made it into the house, flying aimlessly among the upper timbers of the living space.  Opening the french doors, I waited patiently for it to find its way back into the open air.  An hour later, after what appeared to be a nap on one of the timbers, it happily found the open doors and flew off. Our cat was bitterly disappointed.

While the "Road Series" I've been working on deals with the physical and emotional roads we travel in life, I began to think about the paths birds take.  I had worked with this theme earlier when I created "Southern Flight".  

"Southern Flight"  10" x 10"  Lori LaBerge
As I look back at this piece and its meandering lines, I can see that the road series was beginning to develop.  

I researched and found four major migration routes birds take.  They are the Atlantic, Mississippi, Central and Pacific routes.  Here is how the piece is developing so far:

Various grids were sketched out.  The sketch was divided into five sections, four for the routes, plus a side section to the left. There were choices to make as to size and placement of the sections.  I usually draw out a few (sometimes more) variations during the design process.  It doesn't matter during this process if things feel right or wrong, the idea is to get a starting point.

Migrations routes were drawn into four of the sections.  As they are separate routes, the lines within each section do not connect to another section.  I wanted something related to the birds and their flight to go into the left section.  Since they fly from one home to start another, I decided on an abstract nest.  A rough sketch in a circular form gave me an idea of what size it needed to be. 

While drawing onto the linen, I changed the lines in the upper right section as in the sketch on paper, there seemed to be too much space above the lines.  The nest will be hooked randomly, so there was no need for a concise drawing of it on the linen.

Colors were decided upon.

The earlier sketch was placed into Photoshop for color placement.  I'm debating on using the medium taupe on the migration routes or changing it to a lilac with the color behind the nest being a herringbone gray.  The striped area under the nest will be filled with small washers hung from strings of yarn or string.  This will probably end up looking different as the hooking process progresses.

I searched the studio for various materials to use for the nest area.  Scrap materials from the studio are often placed outside for the birds to use. They find these fairly quickly and I've seen signs of them in nests that have been left in our birdhouses. Yarn, sisal, string and paper strips will be added to the work.

On another front, Line DuFour sent e-mails to participants in her project Fate, Destiny and Self-Determination.  She mentioned a write up in Hand/Eye Magazine online. See it here.

Allow for new ideas to develop by sketching out options and have a great day.