Saturday, July 31, 2010

Birthday Bash!

Yesterday was a rip-roaring birthday bash! A picnic on Alki beach, parasailing in the Seattle sound, and bar hopping until 2 am! It's very nice to be an even number. 22, here I come!

I recently made delicious mango muffins. It was supposed to be mango bread, but muffins only take 20 mins and are portable! They are more like a light cookie, but are 100% delicious. Here is the recipe (courtesy of
2 c. flour
1 c. sugar
3 eggs
1 stick butter
1/2 c. oil
2 tsp. baking soda
2 tsp. vanilla
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 c. raisins
1/2 c. coconut
1/2 c. nuts (lg. pieces)
2 c. lg. pieces mango
Mix flour, sugar, eggs, butter, oil, baking soda, vanilla and salt together. Add remaining ingredients and stir. Pour into a greased bread pan or Number 2 cans. Let stand for 20 minutes before baking. Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes.

Friday, July 23, 2010

A tragic tragety

"The She-Devil in the Mirror" by Horacio Castellanos Moya is a dizzying, spiraling tale spun in first-person monologue and will keep your eyes glued to the page. It took me a couple of pages to get used to the chatty, biased narrator's story, but the pace picks up fairly quickly. When Laura's best friend is murdered by a hit-man, she becomes determined to find out who pulled the trigger. With money, good-looks and an obsessive will, she begins digging up the past in a desperate attempt to glue the pieces together. With the country on the brink of economic upheaval, Laura's sensible voice becomes shriller, less cognitive and more paranoid as her world begins to fall apart.
A beautifully translated story in a writing style which is rarely successful, this is a must read!

Terrifying book!

"Behind a Mask" by Louisa May Alcott is a truly devastating book. I had previously read her more famous book "Little Women" which I instantly hated. It took forever for Alcott to finish any sort of thought and was written in such flowery terms I left it in disgust. I will now apologize. This was a gripping tale of calculated deceit, where a titled home is thrown into uproar over the new governess, Miss Muir. Ingeniously written, the reader has only a small inkling of the tenacity and duplicity of Miss Muir's character, as everyone clamors for her attention. Unfortunately for all the characters, each one plays into the scheming hands of Miss Muir. The book gallops toward a set direction, but the twist at the end will have you read this again and again. Written for an era where women survived by securing a husband with their outward appearance, this is a book you won't want to miss.

More Delicious Woodblock!

I know you are dying to see more of my work, so here you go!
I'm currently selling all of these on Etsy under
This is pretty exciting for me!
Going from left to right the titles are, "Angel of Death", "The Original Paris", and a close-up from the "Nightmare Block".

Etsy Post!

I'm giving myself a big pat on the back! I finally put some out online to be sold! This is a huge milestone for me, even if I don't sell anything.
Most of the pictures are 9"x 10" because that is the only way I could spoon fast enough to print it all! Enjoy enjoy!!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

The 1920's

I recently had a hankering for the 1920's movies I used to watch all the time! After seeing them again, I think I need to buy them...
1920's Movies in Order of Amazingness

1. Metropolis- The pinnacle of the silent movie era, a beautiful storyline with gaudy costumes, gigantic sets and (of course) delicious melodramatic acting. Oh, and if you are going to rent it, be sure to get the restored edition, it adds so much more to the story!

2. Modern Times - Starring and directed by the funniest comedian of all time: Charlie Chaplin. The most interesting thing you will find about his movies is that it always has a deeper message. He will always make you laugh, and the characters are ingenious, but his movies end on a different note, which makes you want to watch it again and again.

3. The Eagle - So maybe I am a little biased, but I think Rudolph Valentino is one hell of a sexy man. And the storyline in this one is great, even though the bad guy of the movie is a little ridiculous. A really good romantic adventure.

4. The Black Pirate - Starring Douglas Fairbanks, this is an older movie where you will actually be surprised at the ending! Plus Fairbanks does all of his own stunts (which, in this movie, are numerous). I honestly think he broke all of his bones shooting his movies. (By the way, if you are in for a good laugh, check out his rendition of Robin Hood. You'll never see more merrier Merry Men!)

5. Nosferatu - Dark, deliciously dark. A vampire movie about the disease and disaster with devastating results. Did I use enough D's? It is a little slow in the middle, but overall a beautiful movie with really beautiful sets and an excellent storyline.

6. It - Staring Clara Bow. This is a fun movie, pretty ridiculous (as they usually were) romantic comedy. Clara is hopping all over the screen, and in the end secures her love by stowing away on his private cruise ship. A major plus, seeing Coney Island in it's former glory, and the beautiful costumes.

Spock Lives!

Now if only I could find a place to hang this up....
This seller has some other super funky plates, I wish I could replicate it...
Beat Up Creations

New Book!

It's taken a year, but I found a book that I absolutely love!
The Little Black Book of Stories, by A.S. Byatt, is haunting and gorgeously written. It's been a long time since I've been so engrossed in a book that I can hardly put it down, but here it is!
It's got 5 different stories, all which have a ethereal (and maybe a little satirical) taste to them. My personal favorite is "Stone Woman", an Icelandic tale of being re-born.
Even if you have no wish to read again, just holding this book will make you feel better! To look at this book on Amazon click here

Top Seattle myths

Myth #1- It rains a lot in Seattle.
False - But it is cloudy. Seattle has an average of 295 cloudy days a year!

Myth # 2- You can drive down Pike's Place Market.
False! - The market technically has a street you can drive down, but pedestrians, food trucks and bikes all have the right of way before you do! It takes about an hour to drive 3 blocks!

Myth # 3- Seattle has a great transportation system.
False - Seattle does have a transportation system, but it is hardly ever consistent. Plus, people on the west coast are "friendlier". For some people the bus is how they socialize, and it's usually the guy who smells like weed who bothers you the rest of the ride home!

Not wood, not good.

I have tried used Speedball's "woodblocks" before, with horrible results. One block completely fell apart into feta cheese, the other one crack in half! But this time I decided to give it a try once again. It actually wasn't too bad. This time I bought a mounted linoleum block, which is basically plastic on particle board. It was nice to be able to cut tiny lines and holes without the block chipping, but I felt it lost a lot of it's soul along the way. I like working with wood because it was something alive, it almost has it's own personality ingrained in it (ingrained! Get it?) The linoleum block was a little too perfect. It's a nice work, but not my best, or even close to my best.
It also hated the water-based ink! Even when it's completely dry, if you brush against it, you'll have dry black ink all over your hands!
Water-based = fail.


That being said, I have found that the water based paint worked well on my smaller woodblocks.
This one "Three's Company" was a pain to spoon (I had to spoon quickly because the ink dries!!) But the end result is excellent. This one got into a lovely art show!


I figured out what to do with my nightmare woodblock. I've hung it in the window so all of our neighbors will have nightmares. It actually looks pretty good out there, plus! Free advertising!

It's been a while...

But I'm back!
I'm just finished working on my latest woodblock! I decided to use a water-based block ink instead of the regular oil-based ink I used in school. It's been really great so far, but today I decided to use it on a larger woodblock that what I've normally done. The result was disastrous! The ink dried too quickly, so I wasn't even close to finishing my spooning!