Sunday, August 30, 2009

I'm Taking a Magical Mushroom Tour

A magical mushroom tour is exactly what we experienced hiking in Wisconsin this month. Who knew you could have so much fun in the land of cheese, right? Unfortunately, I'm going to have to disappoint you a little bit. All the magic was strictly visual. No Russian roulette games of ingesting highly posionous vs. just slightly toxic shrooms. And no "trippin" other than our weekend getaway. So now that I've spoiled all the fun let's get back to the journey. The first hike was taken on a deer trail. A well worn path around a hill and through the woods. The destination was our blackberry patch. And we were rewarded with a bumper crop. But since picking is literally a bloodsport, we left plenty for the bears. Since this is an art blog as well as photography, I threw in a little mushroom art as well. I hope you'll play along with me this week because I have more mushrooms than I could fit in one post. But if you're the sort of person that thinks mushrooms are mundane...not magical. I cut my tour short. Only five more to go.

Thursday, August 27, 2009


I took all these water photos this Summer. My favorite photo is the arch of our beautiful Stone Arch bridge here in Minneapolis. The fish tail photo was also taken there. What a perfect tie in with, "Me Kissing a Manatee" All the other photos were taken at Grass lake and Wood lake. One of the best things about being a Minneapolis Minnestotan is our access to such wonderful lakes. And they all have walking trails. I really feel I've captured their beauty with these photos. And it's a good thing because soon they will be covered in ice. O.K. technically it's still August. But I know it's coming.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Me Kissing a Manatee

My friend Nina highlighted the ChickenNuggetLemonTooty blog last week. They're celebrating 3 years of blogging with an invitation to do some new art. The catch...pick out one of his kid's masterpieces and do your own version. It was really fun to see the adult artists interpreting all the funny things kids come up with when you give them a paint brush. I picked, "Me Kissing a Manatee" I guess my version would be, "Kissing a Manatee" Because that's not really me. But I definately feel like I have a little bit of mermaid in me. But only when I'm snorkeling!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Bathroom Art

Because of the photo challenge I'm doing my art post second this week. And as some of my loyal followers may already know, I always relate my photos and my art in some way. Ziplinning and shadows are a tough one. But for some reason I thought of the wooden turtle that I bought in the gift shop at Sky tram. I haven't painted that many turtles. But I did paint a turtle, alligator and a frog...for my bathroom no less. They're painted on the knobs below the sink. And they always make me smile when I use them. Actually my bathroom is a little bit like being in Costa Rica because I painted Bamboo on the wall. If it wasn't for that darn toliet!

Sunday, August 16, 2009

The "A View From Above Challenge"

I'm finally up for a photo challenge. This week Charmine is hosting the The first photo was taken from a swinging bridge at Jay Cook state park. I take alot of shadow pictures. And the shadow actually gives photo evidence of an "above" shot. Like standing on a bridge, hanging from a tree or floating on a cloud. Ha! The next two pictures are taken in Costa Rica. We Ziplined at Sky Tram and it was quite an adventure. First you take the tram up to the top. Then Zipline down. After two practice runs just a few feet off the ground. The third run is a frightning 600 feet off the ground! And lady did not make it across. She slowed down to a complete stop and had to be rescued. Yikes, I was so scared that would happen to me. But it didn't. But this is what happens when you press your luck. We went Ziplining again this year at Aventuras del Sarapiqui and it did happen to me! Luckily the run wasn't quite as high and I pulled myself in. Whew!

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Across from Red Wing

When we venture South, we always head for the beautiful river towns of Maiden Rock, Stockholm and Pepin. Sorry Red Wing. There is a nice little hike that is part of the West Wisconsin Land Trust. And that's where I took the wildflower pictures. You can hike right out to the edge of the bluff. But don't jump off like the Native American princess who wasn't allowed to marry her beloved. So she jumped instead of being forced to marry some other guy. But don't quote me on that one!

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Red Wings Over Red Wing

I just finished this illustration for a CBIG ( ) gallery show that will be held at the end of September. There is no theme, but the show will be held in the town of Red Wing. I was having lunch with some CBIG pals when inspiration hit. And I just went with my first and only idea. Red Wing is a cute little Mississippi river town. Although my favorite towns are located across the river. The picturesque and artsy Maiden Rock and Stockholm WI. Hopefully they don't kick me out of the Red Wing show for that comment! I usually don't talk alot about the art that I post. But I will say that this was one of the more difficult drawings I've done. And that's because I didn't have any imagery with the perspectives I needed. But it was fun too. I even added a lake creature in honor of our Lake Harriet Milly(for milfoil) You can check her out at

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

There's Bear in my Woods!

After almost 2,400 pictures of deer, it's exciting to get a couple bears. I'm sure there are lots of smaller creatures roaming the woods. If they would stand on their tippy toes, the camera might catch them. Here's how the trail cam works. The men in the family put some minerals like salt on the soil in front of the camera. Then when a deer wanders by for a lick, the movement triggers a picture. Maybe a tub of honey would attract more bears! We're disapointed that we didn't catch any coyotes. We sure hear them when we're camping. But I didn't hear them from the Holiday Inn Express!

Sunday, August 2, 2009

The Farm

O.K. I'm just going to come out and say it. I have more trail cam footage and I can't wait to share it. But first here's my art post for the week. And the reason I'm sharing this particular painting is it's connection with the trail cam. This is the farm where I grew up and it's very close to our favorite new toy. We showed up at the woods last Friday. My husband went to get the memory card from the trail cam, and I went to pick blackberries. Do you remember the bear shot from a month ago? Well, I was thinking of that bear when my husband left me in the berry patch! Unfortunately the berries were a bust. Not ripe. And the bear sightings were limited to the trail cam. Speaking of which. Here's some footage below...

I'm ready for my close-up!

I love these shots! The last time we retrieved our footage there were almost 2,ooo pictures. This time we captured around 400 in 1 month. We were visiting my hometown and couldn't wait to get to the good old Holiday Inn Express to view our new shots. The close up is so cool. If you look closely you can see that there is another deer in the background. And there is also a deer standing in the wonderful light display in the other picture. Click to enlarge for better detail. Oh, and by the way. There were 2 more bear shots!