Sunday, August 30, 2009

Let's catch up

Since the last time we talked...okay, I talked at you, there has been so much going on I don't even have time to tell ya the whole story right now but here is a quickie on what's to come.
The Bobbie Takashima seminar

was so so much fun and I'll have a sample of what we learned out at the SEB later today!

I'm working hard to get caught up on orders and I have begun to move things from my old SUS to the new store SEB. I still have display mannequins. doors, windows, art and supplies for you to buy so I don't have to move them. Come and get them quick!
Jennifer is doing her best to stop me from encroaching on her space but Pandora and I have our ways of taking over....mmmmwwwaaahhhahahhaahaaaaa.a..a.
This is a tiny little glimpse of my soon to be new studio work space!

Burgers on the Boardwalk was fun this past Wed.
and I got the Prime Spot right outside Exhibit A Art Gallery.

Sorry Joanne Thomas! I guess you'll just have to make due with your fancy Artist of the Month award from SEB around the corner this time! Thanks Julie for the place of honor in front of the gallery!
Next show is Sept. 16th but I don't think I can make it... or can I?????
Ya just never know so don't take a chance. Show up and have a good enough time for us both!
Oh look!!! It's Damn It Lori and I....but alas...the lass didn't show up last week.
Ya missed a good showing!

I got the best present ever from one of the guests who came for a burger and a stroll through the art show. My very own Kelsey original!!! She is a budding artist and has been helping me with the dome painting I'm doing in her grandparents house by giving her great suggestions on colors and designs.

You can't have MY painting but she is willing to create you a painting of your own for just $15!
You'll get to see the dome painting soon!!

Big happenings for our One State in the Arts artists! Can't show you pictures of our work yet cause it's TOP Secret until the Show. Not only are we getting ready to show our work at the Peoria Art Guild's River Front Art Show at the end of Sept. but there is ANOTHER big event we will be working on with Arts Partners very soon! I mean BIG!!! Like National attention big. Want in? Contact me and I'll give ya a little 411.

OH! I'm late for the the Neighborhood Art Sale before I run off to work at Simply Everything Boutique!
More soon!

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Eat your hearts out

Just hours until I leave for my three day seminar with Bobbie Takashima!!! My sister Suza and I are going to take an art class together for the first time in years!!! I can't wait to drag her...I mean..hhhuuhhh...draw her back into my art world!!! eehehehhehe.e.e.e..e

Thursday, August 13, 2009

The City as a Stage

Thank you to all my Bohemian Art Society Friends who rocked this city with their fantastic art at
One State in the Arts Conference.
You can watch the cool video about us below.
When you first play the video, please press the two lines on the bottom left to pause the video and allow the red bar to load completely before playing.

ArtsPartners of Central Illinois, Inc. is pleased to present "The City As A Stage", an artistic and musical video based on the Illinois Arts Alliance/Illinois Arts Council One State Together in the Arts Conference held at the Hotel Pere Marquette in Peoria, Illinois on June 1 and 2, 2009. The montage includes excerpts from a speech made by guest presenter James Early of the Smithsonian Institute along with welcoming remarks by Peoria Mayor Jim Ardis. Local artists, musicians and performers, all of whom set the conference stage by serving as "street performers" at the Hotel Pere Marquette or by showcasing the wealth of Peoria's arts scene during several Monday Evening with the Arts Bus Tours. The montage captures the spirit in which Peoria, as the host city, embraced this conference experience which was to capture the conference's See Change theme occurring right before one's eyes.

For those of you who aren't in the know
(Until now, which is why you should always check out my blogs and share them with the rest of the world)
I once again called on my friends in the art world to come to my aid to help promote art in our community. My goal was to bring a sense of commUNITY in art through a progressive mural that was created on site at the Pere Marquette during this 2 day conference so that people could SEE CHANGE in Peoria which was the theme of this years conference.
Now, it's a big honor for Peoria to have been chosen and the event is only held every 2 years so the pressure was on to do something that would really get the organizers, officials and participants talking, thinking and imagining in such a fun way that we would be the highlight of every conversation for years to come...and WE DID IT!!!
Who are "We" you ask?
Well, our fearless leader Suzette Boulais, with Arts Partners, is always right at the top of the list with any fabulous art event. Kathy Chitwood of the Eastlight Theatre and Amanda Hahn of the Pere Marquette and the grand Zetter gave me a jingle to ask if I could gather some artists together to make this happen in a big way.
Just so you know, the band of merry art making buddies that participated did so with absolutely no idea that there would be any compensation or real recognition of any kind. Several of these same people have donated to many causes and helped at many events at my beck and call. Most of the time they get a pat on the back and a promise that "some day" I will make good things happen for them.
Well, Cha-Ching!!!
Not only did they get generously compensated for their time but they were on the news, in the paper, have been contacted to demonstrate at other events, commissioned for private works AND our progressive canvas mural will be displayed (proudly) at the Art Guild's River Front Art Show!!!!

Who are "they"
you ask yet again because I got side tracked telling you how fabulous "they" are?
Well, I started the day painting on the windows of the Pere Marquette so people would know there was a happening.
Then Mary Keltner showed up with helpers to prepare the window on Main St. for the children to paint! Amazing work and so so much fun! A dozen paint cover darlings decorated the window and themselves inspiring all of us who were lucky enough to watch them express themselves so joyfully.
Tom Gross,
Adrienne Risby,
James Flanigan
and Ross Stovall
worked individually and sometimes together to create a coordinating series of paintings to represent the changes they have seen or hope to see in Peoria.

Tom Warren set up a 20 foot, yes! I said it and I meant it, 20 foot canvas
that he airbrushed over 2 days at the conference.
While we were painting away there was music, performances, laughter and conversation!
We had so much fun!
I'm sorry it's over..... or is it?
Stay tuned for the next exciting news flash on this continuing saga of...
Amy takes over the world through Art!


Monday, August 10, 2009

Tower Park Festival Marathon Weekend

Who has time to work?

So much happened this past weekend that I'll have to break it up into separate blogs!
The Tower Park Festival in Peoria Heights was the big event and man if you missed it you really missed out!
Hannah and I didn't want to miss anything!!

Nick's band DriveTrain was headlining for the 4th straight year and it's always a good time.
Great food, music and fun people.
I love how easy it is to get to and there is so much to do in the Heights.
Funky Brian and Nick, we miss you boys!!!

Here is Paul and Dottie Weddle & Bob chillin' with Robin Crowe.
Yeah, be impressed. That is me with Jay Goldberg who brought his friend
THE MAYOR of Peoria, Jim Ardis.

Not only did he bring important people to hear Nick play but he even bought Nick's newest CD!Here is my nephew Jon who is desperately trying to look cool.
Barry Cloyd's Band played right before Nick's Band and was great as usual.

This is Michelle who used to babysit for Nick when he was just 1 year old! Now SHE has a baby of her own. My how time flies!

Roy Ponce and BrainChild goofin' with DriveTrain
The were incredible on stage!
Remember the olden days at the Silver Dollar Saloon and the Wed. Night Open Blue Jam? Let's make them bring it back!!

Here's Rooster Alley, speaking of the Silver Dollar Days.
All these guys used to play together.
It's where Nick learned so much about music!

Julie Vonachen, Dottie Weddle and Tony and Robin Crowe.

Five Guys named Moe were so much fun!
They worked the crowd.

We listened to the great bands on Friday to warm up for Saturday's big performance.
Pictures to come!

Saturday morning my husband Tracy and I went road tripping to Ringwood, near Woodstock Illinois, which is near Chicago....well, sort of, to pick up Tracy's dad Bob Boettcher. Bob has moved from Las Vegas to Ringwood recently and has never heard my son Nick play any of his music. UGh! Can't have that!
Left at 6 am, got there around 9:30, made it back by 2:30 so we could set up the merch table for the musicians and hear almost every band. It was like old home week! I loved it. Since Nick lives in Chicago now it's hard for him to get time to come back to play so all his fans, friends and relatives came out to cheer them on!
I don't have all the pics yet. It took 2 cameras to get all the people there!

Okay, uuhhmmm.... you probably noticed rather quickly that my daughter Rachel didn't get her photog skills from me. HUH. I'm so mad at myself for not getting better pictures but we were having too much fun to take the time to really set up.
Sorry folks. You'll just have to use your imagination on some of these.

We closed out the show around 11:30 and came home to crash and eat yet again. The fair food was tasty but just didn't do the trick after dancing around for 16 hours.
Up early for Bob to take a tour of P-Town and then like Willy says....
On the Road Again...
We drop Bob back to his humble abode and race to Chicago so Nick can make it to Aberdeen's
to play yet another gig! We get there just in find out the air conditioning went out because it's been so hot there this weekend! They were closing early.
:( Sad, sad face.
We didn't get to hear Nick do his solo acoustic gig this time.
But, we did have some fantastic food and great service and I might even have gotten a painting gig out of the deal!
So after a pat on the back for a job well done we sent Nick and all of his beautiful guitars home...which is conveniently across the street at Ave N. Guitars.
Yes. That's right. Mama didn't raise no fools.
Nick is smart (lucky) enough to not only get a gig right across the street from where he works but also WHERE HE LIVES.
He is living the musicians dream. He works and lives IN a guitar store! Okay, not actually lives in there, Upstairs in the same building and he does sometimes teach in his big beautiful amazing apartment. The kids is brilliant.
You will notice in the pictures above that Nick is playing 3 different guitars at this Tower Park Festival. That's what happens when you are a kick ass guitarist I guess. People actually handed him amazing works of guitar art and asked if he
Nick being the nice guy he is suffered along and obliged them. (ha ha)
That beautiful golden guitar is about $9,000 and the black guitar was hand made by his friend Dave, that works at Ave N. and is originally from Peoria. The sound on it was fantastic and it looks pretty too!

Sorry, sidetracked....
We jump back in the car to hit home about midnight again.
I have glossed over many many details for the sake of time but when I get the pictures I will fill in.
More excitement to come!

Friday, August 7, 2009

I'm so Tweet

I am all a twitter about birds these days.
Maybe it's my desire to just fly away and be a free spirit or that I wish I could sing or could it be the fact that I've been so busy that I haven't had time to bring new art into to the store at Grand Prairie....until now!

This little 8"x8" painting is actually painted canvas wrapped around a 2" thick wooden block with a hand cut little wooden painted bird on front.
I just love the colors. They seem so soothing to me.

I made a series of 3 of these great little bird paintings and put them on my
secret super sale.
There are no signs about the sale but they are
only $28 each!!!
Only my blog fans get the heads up so make sure
when you come to
Simply Everything Boutique
you check ALL the prices
'cause I sneak specials in to encourage
people to really go on a
treasure hunt in my area!
Don't cha just luuuv art treasures!?

So, I'm painting all these birds and
I keep misplacing my favorite bird brushes.
Imagine "Where's Waldo" but in paint and brushes.

"You Tweet Thing"
was the answer to that problem.

Okay, you can put pens or pencils in it too.

I thought this dresser would be great on a sun porch or solarium.
There is a sweet little group of birds gossiping sitting on top that are just fun to arrange in different ways and settings.

The next set of little birdies I paint I'm thinking of making ridiculous long legs for them. They could be used for garden stakes or plant pokes. What do you think?

Now, Jennifer is not at all into primitive art so she doesn't really get this piece but I just love it.

Those who know me understand that some pieces I sell
and some pieces have to be adopted.
This is one of "Those" pieces of art.
The Original Recyclers

The barnwood that the triptych is mounted on is from a local barn.
The nest is out of the Old State Hospital Building which is now called
The Bowen Building. The branches are also from that property.
These birds had made their homes from what everyone else discarded and thought was useless. It's exactly what I do! Next time someone calls me a bird brain I will say thank you with a smile!

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Birthday Bash Book Brigade

Happy Almost Birthday to my dear sweet Daddy, Gus Errion!
He truly is the best father in the whole world. I am so so lucky.
Actually, anyone who happens to know him should feel lucky and yes that includes all of you who were on probation under his watch.
Yes, that watchful triangle of power!
(For those who haven't met Glen James Errion aka Gus- he has a power frown that created a triangle between his eyebrows that made grown convicted felons and police officers tremble.)
The funny thing is he's the nicest guy in the world that would do anything for you...(including sending you to jail if that was what was best for you).
We celebrated his 81st birthday
(which is actually Aug. 25th)
Originally we had planned to go on a big family trip out of town
but...we should have started planning last year for that.
Plan B was taking Dad to every used book store
in town (and out) and competing with the family
to see who could buy him the best books followed by
a pizza and ice cream bar to create the most masterful culinary art!

We started with Waxwing in Chillicothe.

Great place! Wonderful variety of books. Many collector books.
I won the first book of the day by buying a book of dirty limericks. Somehow the picture to prove it mysteriously disappeared from my camera after Suza borrowed it...hhhhmmmmm....
Suza won the best book award for finding books on the FBI. My father was an FBI agent before I was born!

On to our next adventure! Peoria here we come!

The Book Nook was big and beautiful
but....huh...we scored no books for dad
but Karen found about a dozen for herself! Go Karen!

On to the Dynasty to acquire sustenance in
order to recapture our fine honed book hunting skills.
Here is Bob when he thinks I'm not looking.
We left no book store unturned.
We found the new (er) Goodwill store
at the north end of town to see what treasures we could find.

Good thing we did! Suza might have missed this much sought after velvet senorita painting! Ho-lay!
Even Tracy made a purchase when he thought we weren't looking.
Now this store-
I know you like a book-
was my absolute hands down favorite bookstore by far.
Not only did it have an amazing variety of
good books at good prices but it serves wine
and has such a great cozy relaxed atmosphere!
After a couple of glasses of wine and the purchase of a few good books like
The Secrets of Hypnotism
and we were on our way to the pizza making competition!
No Fair! They brought in a ringer! Chef Ben worked his magic and won the cooking contest with Karen and Tracy coming in at a close 2nd. Karen made her Chicken Alfredo pizza and Tracy got extra points for home made pizza sauce on his 1/2 meatlovers 1/2 smop. Tracy also had an unfair advantage because back in the olden days he threw pies for Shakey's Pizza Parlor.
Chef Ben threw in a 1/2 sauerkraut/sausage and 1/2 purly pig pizza to take the cake...I mean Ice Cream!

As Dad gathered his loot we finished off the day with an ice cream bar overload that included waffle cups, marshmallows, coconut, whipped cream, chocolate crackle, Carmel syrup, Ande's mint chips, cocoa powder...ugh...there was more but I'm going into a sugar coma just thinking about it.....Guess I'm not the only one!
We had a great time celebrating and after checking everything off of our to do list we decided it was time to head home.
Eat, Drink, Read, Sleep, Repeat.

A good time was had by all!
Happy Birthday Daddy!