Adventures planned for 2016

I'm excited for this upcoming semester! I've got some new adventures being planned, and I couldn't be happier.

As an artist I think its important to take advantage of opportunities to learn new things. I'm excited to say that this next semester, I'll have some studio time with some talented painters who are willing to teach me the formal elements of painting.

My grandmother first taught me how to paint as a child, working primarily in oil and sometimes drawing with pastels.  Since then, I've spent a lot of my own time working with acrylics and water colors.  I love the fluid nature of water colors, and the medium has been one that I have found is quite relaxing and brings me a lot of personal peace.

 I've also been spending some time thinking about this summer, where I'll be and what I'll do with my free time once I'm through teaching. I would really like to spend some time in a national park that I haven't been to, I've been to quite a lot! Hopefully I can get a proposal accepted by a national park, and spend some time drawing, painting, maybe even printing. 

Regardless of where I go, I think it'll be important to spend some intentional time as an artist being surrounded by the outdoors. In John Pipers book Desiring God, he explains how God isn't fully exalted until we appreciate what he has given us. To thank him, admire him, and enjoy the goodness that he has provided. I think setting aside some intentional time could be great for the soul too, so maybe you'll see some more on these plans but till then I'll be praying about what will happen!


Art Conspiracy, A philanthropical grass roots movement

What is ArtCon, and why am I always blowing up your facebook/instagram feed with it?
Great Question!

The short story: 
Art Con/ Art Conspiracy is a non-profit organization that works to raise money for other non-profits. 

The long story:
The Dallas Observer has called ArtCon the art party of the year. And for so many good reasons!
They have live bands, food trucks, live auctions, and its normally housed in some type of rustic wherehouse with the Dallas skyline as its background. It's hard not feel edgy and cool there.

Every half hour a live auction starts, where bids start at $20 and everyone is invited to bid on a piece of original hand crafted art made on a uniformed 18 x 18 sized board.  There are normally around 150 artist, so you can imagine the diversity of pieces that are created! 

The money raised through the auction, through ticket sales, t-shirt sales, and all that jazz goes toward a chosen beneficiary. This year we sponsored a group call MAPS. Making art with a purpose. Last year it was a Ballet Folkloric Dance company, and we raised over $25,000! I'm not sure how much was raised this year, since it happened so recently, will update when I find out!

Here's some photos from the event:::

I was super excited to be able to donate a piece of art to the auction. There is no set theme for the event, so I made a piece inspired by my brothers new job at General Motors and Johnny Cash.  "One piece at a time" is the name of the song i'm referencing for those non Johnny Cash lovers.   

I look forward to ArtCon every year, and I really love what they are doing for the community.  I firmly believe that we are not fully living our lives to the fullest if we are not helping those around us.  It's a great way for instant community. If you have the opportunity to volunteer, or be an artist I encourage you to participate! 

Check out more about Art Conspiracy at
 Or check out this interview they did of me!



Learning new trades

 I decided to learn a new skill, upholstery! I took a piece of furniture my father had in his bachelor pad from the 70's and redid it for my modern bachelorette pad. 
Sewing, and hand tool skills were greatly improved during this learning session! 
Click through the slides below for its col new look!
There were definitely mistakes made, but nothing that wasn't fixable! 

Samples from my sketchbook 10/16

I love taking peeks into other artist sketchbook, so I thought I might include some samples of my own books for others to peek through!
In my classes, I request that students have a sketchbook with them every time that we meet.  The books are used for their own note taking, as well as turned in so that I can make sure they are participating in class and completing assignments on time.  This practice was developed in my class room as a positive experience I had in my first printmaking class.  Keeping a sketchbook is a wonderful and positive way to develop your skills quickly.  They can also provide a great resource!