Thursday, December 26, 2013

Love in Vermont

A couple of months back I was commissioned to do a Mosaic piece for an acquaintance of mine. She had just been married this year to the love of her life and wanted a Christmas/ Wedding gift for him. They recently moved to Vermont, her home state, and where he had never lived before. She said that he loved gardening and the natural beauty of the land here. Who doesn't! It is just beautiful, every season of the year.  She asked for gardens and Vermont landscape during the 4 seasons of the year. We went over a few ideas for layout and some of his favorite plants. She mentioned that they had planted a Birch Tree in their yard as a symbol of their marriage.

This is a design theme that I have always wanted to do. The 4 seasons in New England. Having been in Arizona and California for so many years I always missed the dramatic season change and it has not lost it's charm on me in the 4 years I have been back East. Designing this piece took me a bit. Originally I had the classic 4 squares lined up. Designing a commission for me can be tough in that I cannot force it. The idea needs to evolve in it's own time and eventually it just happens. Not good for deadlines! My husband reminds me every time when I say, "I have no idea where to start" that it will come to me. And it always does. 

Vermont seasons flow into one another if you are conscious of your natural surroundings. If you are not paying attention then the changes happen while you blink. All of a sudden it is Winter and you hear, "When the heck did that happen?". But truly they evolve into one another and I wanted to capture that. 

Christmas morning!
Evan I hope that you enjoy this piece in your home, that it captures Vermont and your LOVE, and that you and your thoughtful wife Skye enjoy it together for many years to come!

Skye, Evan and Dixie

 Thanks to Skye and Evan for sharing your Christmas morning with us!

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Serenity in Glass

In 2012 I was asked what my idea of "Serenity" is. I immediately thought of my outdoor bathtub dream. I have always wanted to have an old claw foot bath tub outside on my land (which I will have some day) that is heated by a wood fire or coals of some kind. I also love hanging my clothes out to dry (even more so when I have my land). I have been in Vermont for almost 4 years and I absolutely love it here. I grew up in Connecticut and spent much time up in Northern Maine. I have always loved the landscape in the North East. Back when I was young I dreamed of having my land in Northern Maine. I seemed to be positive that this was where I would settle. Well I have ended up settling in Vermont (which is more perfect than I could have imagined) with my husband, who grew up here, and I will have my first baby any day now. We are actively searching for our land.

So in 2012 after having been asked this question of my serenity, I had designed a stained glass window. What happens with art pieces that are not commissions, is that they come secondary to all other things in my life. They are a luxury, a hobby, an idea that gets started and not always finished. I did a drawing, I chose glass, I cut out my pattern pieces, cut each piece of glass individually ( I believe this piece has around 360 pieces) , wrapped each piece of glass with copper foil tape, and I soldered the whole thing (my favorite part).

Soldering the window together
Soldered! First sight of it with light coming through

Looking back at the above picture of me soldering, I realize just how long ago this was, as I notice that our porch was not yet completed. The window sat soldered and unframed for quite a while, as life carried me away. Wintertime, a wedding, pregnancy, work... Well It was eventually put into it's frame, an old sash I refinished (partially refinished, I like to keep the charm of the older frame) and it is now complete with hooks for hanging (thanks to the help of my husband). As we look for land, expect the arrival of baby I hope the design manifests into reality for me someday. I shouldn't say hope, as I know it will come to be. My "Serenity".

This piece is currently for sale and will be featured over the next 2 months in the window of ORCA Media in downtown Montpelier on East State Street next to La Brioche and across from the Coffee Corner.
Please don't hesitate to contact me with any interest or questions.

Thanks to...
 Scott Sabatino for all of your help 
April McCandless for the photos
ORCA Media