03 June 2012

Colorado Storms

A post from a new place - Denver, Colorado in fact. 

I have always loved to travel, and during the Spring of 2011 I got to literally travel the globe with an amazing set of people from various walks of life and a multitude of professions.  Semester @ Sea, the program that brought us all together was a wonderful experience, that I will treasure forever, due in large part to the faculty and staff that made the voyage possible.  On Friday, I traveled to Colorado to meet up with over 50 of my S@S friends and coworkers.  It was absolutely GREAT!!!!  Thanks to wonderful Sunny - we gathered at the YMCA of the Rookies near Granby, Colorado.  This place had everything and catered perfectly to our needs.  We ate together, hiked together, had the opportunity to practice archery, horseback riding, arts and crafts and a whole lot more.  I can't say enough about how great the whole weekend was.  I am still processing the weekend, while hanging out with J here in Denver.  J was another of my S@S friends who was a great travel buddy and has become a close friend.

Although I have never traveled to Colorado before and the altitude messed with my system more than I thought it would, I will definitely be coming back to spend time with good friends!

30 May 2012

Spring Rain

Well, It has been a nice week.  On Sunday, we traveled to Morrilton to visit with Grandma and to eat her famous Chicken and Dumplings.  Then on Monday morning, after a mad dash to Searcy and a wild ride over the back roads of central Arkansas, we met up at Clinton for a double birthday bash for Uncle Paul and my little sis Maggie.  A fun time was had by all!!  Also, on Sunday afternoon - it was Decoration Day at the local cemetery where many of my Dad's ancestors and close family are buried.  It was great to go out and see family and friends straitening up the area around their family's graves as well as placing beautiful bouquets and flags on all the headstones.

On Friday of this week, I head out for Denver and a huge Spring 2011 Semester @ Sea reunion in the Rocky Mountains.  Basically we are meeting up as far from the ocean as we can get.  :)  It has to be said that without the brilliant Sunny - this whole upcoming shindig would have never been organized. 

I am also looking at a few possible job applications.... so everyone keep you fingers crossed that this is what I need to be doing - and that I am on the right path.  

Now, for the important part - pics and sketches!!!  Enjoy!

Family taking time to sit and talk during Decoration Day at the cemetery

Great 1950's Chandelier in Fort Smith

20 May 2012

Sudden Storms

Another Busy Week!

I traveled to Fort Smith, Arkansas on Wednesday for the Annual Arkansas Preservation Alliance conference.  It was grand, and I really learned a lot and met a whole host of new friends.  It was also great to talk to some of my old friends from my internship days in Little Rock several years ago.  (Man, its been a while since undergrad - so crazy!)

On Wednesday we were given a great tour of some of Fort Smith's National Register Historic Districts - which include some really fantastic structures.  I finished off the evening with a great meal and a fun little pub crawl with some new friends.  Thursday was mostly devoted to seminar sessions; in which I learned a lot about tax codes, sprinkler systems, and economic gardening - as well as the historic development and preservation of Fort Smith.  Another nice dinner and a little wine tasting rounded out the evening.  (I really enjoyed getting to know some more preservationists in Arkansas, as well as getting to talk about preservation as a whole with people who are already invested in the field - that doesn't happen around here much.)
Restored Train - Fort Smith to Van Buren

On Friday, we took a fun train ride to Van Buren; across the Arkansas River.  Then we visited the Drennen-Scott House in Van Buren, a nice project that showcases what you can accomplish with some good backing and great dedication.  Also, I was informed that the original painted plaster frieze from the interior of the Arkansas Pavilion at the 1893 Worlds Columbian Exposition in Chicago was kept and maintained in the parlor of the Drennen-Scott House since its instillation immediately following the fair by Mrs. Caroline Scott, a prominent member of the Arkansas contingent to the fair.  I Love the 1893 World's Fair!!!
The Painted Frieze - Parlor - Drennen-Scott House

To cap the week off - today, after much excitement and meetings and prayer, First Baptist called and hired a new Pastor to lead the church.  It is great that we finally have a new pastor, after months of searching - and now, maybe our church can start fresh and work toward growth and spiritual development.  I can't wait to see what happens.

13 May 2012

Humid Days, Cool Nights

A Busy Week:

Maggie arrived home on Tuesday, all ready to come to work at Lantern on Wednesday - training your little sis is so much more fun than it really should be.  Mostly, I think, because it gives me a really great excuse to order her around.  :)

A Beautiful Spring Day!!

A quick trip to Little Rock today for the annual Spring Tour of Homes, sponsored and organized by the Quapaw Quarter Association.  I had a bit part in the research and write-ups for the six properties on this years tour.  They were all amazing little homes and gardens, and the insides were all just immaculate - a fun tour of what I hope my home will some day look/feel like.  All in all, the open houses seemed to be very well received - and there were tons of people there the entire 2 hours plus that I was walking around, enjoying the beautiful houses and the gorgeous weather.

 People waiting in line to have a look at the interior of the Powell-Clements House

 The Tour booklet - with my write-ups inside :)

A beautiful, old, local brick set into a patio of similarly beautiful, old, local bricks

Maggie is all trained and off to a running start at Lantern - and it was good that she worked on Saturday, since I couldn't be there.  It was apparently one of the store's busiest days of the year, thanks in large part to Mother's Day.  I bet it will be fun to re-organize and straighten out the store displays tomorrow.  At least I will keep busy.

Next week, I head out to the Historic Preservation Conference in Fort Smith.  It has been a long time since I purposefully went to Fort Smith.  It will be interesting to see the historic districts - and I even get a train ride out of it - so it will be great!  (I love train rides)  (side note:  Last time i was in Fort Smith, i had to deal with stupid government bureaucracy while trying to get info from the US passport office to send to the British consulate so they could ok my Visa, which i really didn't need anyway - but still had to get for some reason for the Courtauld.  I did persevere, but only after 3 different trips to the same office in Fort Smith to get them to sign the same paper and take my fingerprints - which I assume were exactly the same.  I hate red tape.)  On a nicer note - look at these simple, yet cool sketches from this afternoon:

Above:  a capital from the Powell-Clements House

Aa couple of quick sketches from the Tour 

Below:  a detail from the entry to the Boyle House

08 May 2012

Warm Music with or without Lightning

What a full week!

Last Thursday, I showed some of my button jewelry at a local craft & art fair.  It was the product of a ton of work over the last few weeks; but it was fun to show off my creative side.  A little pocket money doesn't hurt either.

On Friday, I was off work for a bit of a mini vacation - in Memphis with V.  What a great weekend it was!!!  Musicfest and lots of other fun activities; including a 8.5 mile bike ride, a 3 mile walk and some great food and friends.  Also, who couldn't have fun seeing NeedtoBreathe, Little Richard (yeah, the real LR), Allison Kraus, Florence + the Machine and the Civil Wars.  Yeah, it was a blast.

                                     Florence + the Machine                         the Civil Wars 

By the way, lets just take note of the creepy awkward Elvis set that NeedtoBreathe apparently brought with them.  I understand the need to have Elvis in close proximity to any Memphis/music mix - but really, lets just pick a more flattering image:

I drove home on Sunday night, very late.  It was actually fantastic - due in large part to the amazing lightning show that went on for more than and hour.  Cloud to ground, cloud to cloud, and multiple thunderheads all glowing with beautiful but deadly sparks of power.

The Spring Tour of Homes in the Quapaw Quarter is also this coming weekend - and I have been working with the QQ Association as and Architectural History Consultant.  A cool little gig if I do say so myself.  I am working on some great publications and research for them, and can't wait to see some final products!!  Little Rock is always a cool place to visit, especially when I get to see T and her friends and family.  T was also was the inspiration for some travel/map themed pinwheels for a baby shower - apparently they were a big hit.

M is home from school this week too - and is coming to work at Lantern with me.  This is going to be interesting, to say the least.  Sisters don't always make great co-workers, but I am totally willing to try.

A sketch to end the night:

I was thinking this might look cool with the figure black or white to form a negative space with the non-figure area swirling with color.

22 April 2012

Who turned on the winter machine?

Craft Day with V!!!

It was great to have a full weekend with lots of friends and, of course, crafting.  [always one of my favorite activities]  V and I made some great map inspired crafts to help us show our love for our hometowns and our home-states.  Truthfully, much fun was had by all.

Crafts in progress, and V waiting for glue/paint to dry
All the places I have lived - craft still in progress.

[If your wondering, starting from the top left and going down:  P-gould; Vol Walker; Nolli's Rome; Little Rock; Jamaica; Jefferson's Hometown; London; Scottsville on the James; and last but not least, the MV Explorer]

T was also in town, and we always have fun hanging out and generally giving each other a hard time.  Really, the main reason we are great friends is that our skill-sets are so compatible and she likes to steal my stuff.  ;)

I couldn't ask for a better weekend, or better friends for that matter.  I am totally re-energized for the coming week, and can't wait to get going on all the exciting things yet to come.  Bring It On!

16 April 2012

It Was a Dark and Stormy Night.

Another weekend, another couple of projects underway:

The Little Rock/Quapaw Quarter project is in full swing - though it is going to be interesting to see how it fills out from here-  mapping is about done, so I feel like I have accomplished something in the last few days.

The Paragould project is slow to get off the ground, but I hope to have some definite project this week.  Enough about work - now for play:

Buttons, Buttons, Buttons - I have been working to do some new button projects, and have come up with a couple of designs I really love!  I can't wait to make more - Mom and I are going to be selling our wares at a local Art/Craft night in downtown Paragould in early May.  I did one craft show last year, but it was kinda a flop - lots of people, but not many sales - but this one should be better.  (here is hoping, anyway).

A couple of Button Inspired Hair Clips/Facinators
Definitely making more of these.

Button Wrap Necklace - making more of these with washers next time.

A small Button Tree growing out of a Salt shaker.

Washer and Button Pendant

Just for fun!

09 April 2012

Cool, Clear and Beautiful.

Wow, it has been a while - sorry, but it has been crazy around here.

Virginia and I had a blast listening to PostSecret.org founder Frank Warren!


... and suddenly its Spring!!

New projects, including a new craft show in May and an actual consulting gig with the Quapaw Quarter Association in Little Rock, Ar.  A nice little job which I am actually quite excited about!  I also found more info for the Paragould Architectural Guide I am planning - I can't wait to get it really started (which is always the hardest part)

... and I love my car for basically this reason.

In the craft sphere - I have actually been selling a bit of my button jewelry - and can't wait to get some more done for the craft fair the first week of May - just in time for me to turn around and go to Memphis the next day for Memphis in May.  It will be great to see the Civil Wars again, and some new bands.  All I have to say is that I can't wait!

... one of the necklaces I made and sold last week.
... and now some new sketches.

11 March 2012

A Rainy Evening

Work, Work, Work - and pretty boring at that, but what can you do?
Here is to next week, and getting more done!!

This time last year - I was sailing out of the port of Chennai, India after seeing New Dehli, Fatehpur Sikri and the Taj Mahal, as well as eating one of the most ridiculously delicious and conspicuous meals i have ever eaten.  Six Americans around one very small fast-food restaurant table - piled with plastic trays which had recently been heaped with the most amazing vegetarian meals.  It was ridiculous, but mostly fantastic!!  

Here are a few more recent sketches - I am sensing a theme:

04 March 2012

cool and breezy

Its been a long week - but a good one on the whole. 

Here are a few thing from around the Inter-webs that are of interest:

"Why Don't We Read About Architecture?"  by Allison Arieff - NYTimes --- HERE
Sotheby's Caught in Dispute Over Possibly Looted Camobidian Staute/Cultural Treasure ---- HERE 
Historic Mary Plantation House in Plaquemines Parish will be sold at auction, article by Paul Purpura of the Times-Picayune, NOLA -- HERE
Chinese Architect Wang Shu Wins the Pritzker Prize, article on NPR --- HERE

I hope to spend some time actually making stuff this week - and I found a four-leaf clover today, so here is hoping I will get a few things done for myself.

A few things from the sketchbook to end the day: