Tuesday, May 19, 2009

San Juan Island Artists' Studio Tour 2009

Well, it is that time of year again!!! The whales are back, making close passes at the lighthouse, poppies are blooming all over the island, fox pups are bounding on the sides of the roads and the 18th Annual San Juan Island Artists' Studio Tour is just around the corner. Between June 6th and 7th, the Island artists will be offering free self-guided tours of 17 studios featuring 39 local artisans. And it is all free!

The studio tours started back in 1991 and has become a popular island event for both residents and visitors. The tour is completely self guided and allows visitors to see many different types of art as well as interact with the artists in their galleries. Lots of GREAT spaces, art demonstrations and door prizes- during a time when the island itself is in full bloom. Participants will have an opportunity to see a wide variety of artwork including paintings, fused glass, jewelry, pottery, sculpture, photography, furniture, and textiles. And I am absolutely honored to have been invited as a guest photographer in Michelle Shober's studio (#11 on the map)- and simply cannot wait to spend the weekend meeting everyone!  We've been working on the Studio of Collaborative Creation to get it ready for the guests- lots of hangings and creativity going on right now. 

A bit about the art group who meets there- can you say talent?  Each Sunday we gather together at Michelle's studio to focus on what art truly means in our lives as well as sharing great conversation, dreams, ideals and good old fashioned friendship. Different artists visit throughout the months, but the core group includes Bobbi Hamilton, who is an extremely talented graphite and colored pencil artist, Marsha Ashbrook- an extremely patient and incredibly artistic graphite artist, Katy Barsamian (loves the color purple and can design anything in lilac- even a flamingo) Gretchen Allison (owner of The Duck Soup Inn and a fantastically creative painter), Midge Patterson, Diana Sheffer and myself (although throughout the summer my attendance is completely whale dependent!). I really find this group defining- there is such a huge collection of talent (and one would think egos but that is not the case) in one room, each with varying strengths and weaknesses.  But there is a distinctly common factor. We have become friends, keeping us sane and allowing us to laugh while being who we each need to be. There is a distinct empowerment in that - we empower each other in our mutual appreciation for what each of us brings to the table. Perhaps when no one else will. We share ourselves, our successes, our fears and our love for one another, allowing us to grow together in both our art and in ourselves. It's really quite amazing- it is such a safe place full of trusting, honesty and creativity.

So when Michelle opened her new studio this winter, we all decided to create a "studio warming" gift. Since Michelle has ALWAYS loved flamingos- what else could possibly be better to design? We had alot of fun over the next few weeks designing special birds that represent us- each of us adding a flamingo to the studio presence. I thought you might like to check some of them out---and be sure to visit in June!!!!

The studios on the tour will be open 1:00pm to 5:00pm both days---and there is absolutely no charge to tour the studios and enjoy this popular event. All anyone needs is a map (see above) and the time wander the from studio to studio enjoying both the art and the scenery of San Juan Island. Hope to see you on the island!!!!

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Dog Apparel: It's A Dogs Life

I don't usually spend much time promoting "stuff to buy" on this blog, but today I just had to "break the rules." Zazzle, an online POD site that has the artistic community in a creative frenzy,  has recently begun showcasing a new line of apparel for man's best friend- and their ever cheeky designers have stepped up to the challenge. If you love dogs, you just have to check out some of these absolutely ADORABLE pup related clothes and designs- some of them had me rolling on the floor laughing this morning! Enjoy some light humor this Saturday morning while we wait for the whales to return (hopefully later today!!!)


I've shown the dogs wearing them in the first row only, but all are actually dog shirts!! LOL

Flying Monkey Tours petshirt
Funny Dog Park Security Guard Dog Shirt petshirt
Funny Dog Park Security Guard Dog Shirt petshirt
Dog Athletic Department Dog Athlete Funny Shirt petshirt
Funny Dog Shirt Bark Ranger Hiking Puppy petshirt
Chick Magnet Funny Dog Shirt petshirt
Funny Dog Wise Saying Dog Lover TShirt shirt
What Happens Dog Park Dog T-Shirt petshirt
Cute Dog Shirt With Bones Great Dog Lover Gift petshirt
iDog Funny Navigation Controls petshirt
Talk to the Paw petshirt
Playing Fetch is 20th Century Flyball petshirt
Blogging Dog Funny Pet Shirt petshirt
Ball? Dog Shirt petshirt
FETCH! Dog Shirt petshirt
FETCH! Dog Shirt by
Peace Love Disc Dog petshirt
Pup Cartoon dog shirt petshirt

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Custom Stamps for All Occasions!: Damask Diva Custom Wedding Stamps and Stickers Now Online!

Custom Stamps for All Occasions!: Damask Diva Custom Wedding Stamps and Stickers Now Online!

Action For Salmon Restoration Initiative

Neither the 20th century nor the last half of the 19th have been kind to Pacific Northwest salmon runs. The Columbia-Snake Basin was once the most productive salmon watershed in the world, but today salmon returns number just 1% of its historic salmon and steelhead populations — severely reducing fishing opportunities and fishing economies for scores of communities across the Pacific Coast and inland West. Overfishing, degradation of habitat and the building of the Columbia River system dams have all helped devastate not only the salmon but concurrently, the entire natural ecosystem. For too long the fate of salmon and the salmon economy has been in the hands of a federal bureaucracy that has been unwilling to consider many options for recovering the various endangered species of Pacific Northwest Salmon, even going so far as to ignore science, filter results and establish means by which to ignore both the endangered species act and citizens concerns. In the interim, salmon and the region have continued to pay the price.

This year, many have looked toward the Obama administration to craft an effect plan to reverse this alarming trend. And in a potentially historic move this week, the federal government has sought a delay of up to two months as it develops a plan to save salmon in the Columbia River Basin from extinction.  In a letter to a federal judge, the Obama administration said top officials want more time to "more fully understand all aspects" of the salmon restoration and recovery plan.

The Northwest and the nation need a new way forward for Columbia & Snake River salmon that will restore science to decision-making, protect the integrity of the Endangered Species Act, and wisely invest American taxpayer dollars into revitalizing our communities. A lasting solution will recover salmon, create jobs, and help build a clean energy future. With science leading the way, the hope of real salmon abundance can be realized.

Organizations such as Save Our Wild Salmon, have been leading the way in the fight to save the Pacific Northwest Salmon since 1991. A nationwide coalition of conservation organizations, commercial and sportsfishing associations, businesses, river groups, and taxpayer advocates make up this group, working collectively to restore self-sustaining, abundant, and harvestable populations of wild salmon and steelhead to rivers, streams and oceans of the Pacific Salmon states.

With the Obama Administration clearly indicating they want the time to review the science to develop appropriate protocols going forward, now is the time to impress Washington with the plight of the salmon.  You can click here to TAKE ACTION or read the letter below being circulated by conservation organizations.

"Wild pacific salmon are a national treasure - an awe-inspiring symbol of healthy rivers, good jobs, nutritious food, and thriving communities. The Snake and Columbia Rivers were once home to the largest salmon populations on the planet.

Today, however, many of these populations are facing extinction. The latest federal plan for the Columbia-Snake Basin perpetuates decades of ineffective federal policies and billions of taxpayer dollars that have failed to protect salmon and steelhead from declining toward extinction. We are in urgent need of a new approach that is firmly grounded in both good science and fiscal responsibility. 

Four federal dams on the lower Snake River prevent salmon from surviving to return to some of the biggest, wildest, highest, coldest, healthiest and best-protected habitat remaining in the continental United States. These dams make the downstream migration of young salmon an untenably lethal one, killing as much as 90% of these Snake River fish before they ever reach the Pacific Ocean.

The science and economics are clear: any effective salmon plan must include the removal of these costly and out-dated dams. The federal government's current approach, which ignores the science supporting lower Snake River dam removal as part of a comprehensive suite of recovery measures, fails endangered salmon, fishing communities, and American taxpayers. 

I strongly urge your leadership in Congress to craft legislation authorizing the removal of the four lower Snake River dams. This action must be part of a scientifically sound and fiscally responsible plan that will restore wild salmon, create jobs, save taxpayer dollars, revitalize communities, and ensure the survival of this national treasure for future generations. I look forward to hearing from you about your efforts to safeguard imperiled wild salmon. Thank you."