Friday, August 7, 2009

The Art of Fair Food

Disclaimer: I DID NOT eat all of this food. I had help from some co-workers. So there.

That being said, isn't fair time the best? The family and I went on Wednesday night, but pulled out the camera and forgot my CF card. Go figure. So yesterday I was able to redeem my need for fair photography, albeit not so much the actual fair, but the FOOD. Oh yum. It's the one time of the year that I indulge in too much deep-fried goodness, and sticky sweets. (Except for Christmas, Halloween, and Easter, but that's just a lot of sugar, nothing deep-fried.)

Anyway, the list of items we ate too much of were: JalapeƱo Cheese Curds (highly recommend!), Very Large Bratwurst with Fried Onions, Giant Cup of Limeade, Buffalo Burger, Deep-Fried Oreos (I didn't have one... mixed reviews from the tasters), the traditional Corn Dog, and finally the Ginormous Cinnamon Sugar Sprinkled Monster Ear. Whew.

So again, why is this art you may be asking. Well, the fair only comes to town once a year. Sure you can get a corn dog at the grocery store, and most everything else on the list too, but there is an ambiance about the fair. It's the place where EVERYBODY is walking around talking and eating. It's a community thing. The art of fair food goes beyond the food itself. It's more about the tradition and sensory overload. I love it.

Monday, August 3, 2009

The Art of Getting Dirty

One of my posts a while back was "The Art of Getting Clean." Well, this should have been the post right before that . . . the prequel. I have boys. Boys love dirt, mud, and all other means by which to get dirty. In this case, the rain we have gotten lately has made our driveway a bit sloppy, especially in one low-lying area. It makes a deliciously tempting area for little boys to piddle, splash, and get generally filthy. And me, sitting back and looking on just had to have a chuckle and let them be boys for a while. No yelling to "Get out of that mud!" or "You're getting you're clothes all dirty!" . . . nope. Not this time. The art of getting dirty was in full swing, and who was I to stop it.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Very Fluffy Cotton Candy Storm Clouds

So, you may see a theme here in summer. Nature. Man, is it a glorious thing. I had originally wanted to do a post about rain as art. But then I found myself taking photos of the clouds (again, I know). Today they were not ordinary rain clouds . . . they were spectacular rain clouds. Look at the wisps and curls, dark and light. I hate to say it, but I really feel sorry for the people who don't recognize the beauty that is nature. Driving past Walgreen's I just had the overwhelming urge to grab my camera and take this photo at the stoplight (you may see some sprinkles in the photo from my windshield).

Seriously, what could be cooler than towering clouds that look like giant piles of cotton candy? I am so very thankful that I am able to see these things. It never leaves me wondering what to do next. The art is always there, plentiful.

p.s. Thank you for indulging my creativity here as well. Saturating and curves and sharpening, oh my! Most of the time I don't, but this time I thought it added to the drama. :)

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

The Art of Cutting the Grass

It has to be done. It just does. Well, ok technically it doesn't, but at our house it does. Mowing the lawn. I remember last year we had maybe 2 inches of rain the whole summer? I think we cut the grass once a month . . . maybe. This year we've got some gorgeous, thick green stuff just begging for a trim. And Trent gladly obliges. He cuts it at a different angle each time. Seriously. The man is a lawn mowing pro (and shoveling . . . but that's for this winter). Quite meticulous. Mowing the lawn at our house is an art form. It's carefully cut, bagged, and hauled off on the rickety little trailer. So while you may see it as a chore, at our house it is art. Because when it's done, it makes the yard look like a masterpiece.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Sad Kitten

So, you may be wondering why on earth I think sad kittens are art. Come on now, I'm in advertising, people! Anything cute, furry, with long whiskers and a precious little "mew" is going to be considered art in my book. And seriously, how could you not recognize the absolute beauty in this tiny creature? His sad little eyes telling me he really would like to be set down. And then his cry for his mama. "Where are you mom?!" Ah, these little guys pull at my heart strings. Not to mention that my kids had a ball chasing them around my friend's yard, which makes me smile. Will we take one home in a couple of weeks? Hmmm. Debatable. Would we love to give them cuddles to make them not so sad? Definitely. :)

Friday, July 24, 2009

Vegetable Gardens

We have a little vegetable garden. And the fruits of our labor are seen here. There's not a lot, but what we have this year is thriving, gladly, seeing as how I am much more of a flower gardener (go figure, right?). The boys have been eating up the new pea pods on a daily basis, leaving a few skinny ones hanging for a couple more days before they get devoured. They never make it to the kitchen, but that was the intent anyway. The tomatoes are still green little ornaments that tempt the kids to pluck them off, but with a stern "do not touch that yet!", they leave them alone. And now seriously, did you think any garden I have wouldn't have a flower in it? At the far end of the garden, bases surrounded by pumpkin and squash vines, stand a few sunflowers. This is the first to bloom, not even fully open yet. So pretty. I love the varieties that have the gorgeous maroon streaks within the gold petals. But there I go again, talking all lovely about flowers. Enough of that! So the art today is vegetable gardening. Amazing how you can plant an ordinary seed into the earth and receive so much. Plain old miraculous and artful in every sense.

Thursday, July 23, 2009


No excuses (other than it is an extremely busy summer—seriously). That's all I'm going to say about that.

I have a thing for flowers. And I am not biased. I like flowers even if they are considered weeds. Each and every photo shown in this post is a weed. My youngest son and I stopped alongside the road near our house last night and wandered down a dirt path. What I found, in my opinion, are some of the prettiest little beauties around. And even though they aren't in a landscaped flower bed, or in an elegant vase on a table, they still showcase themselves in a wonderful way. More people probably get to see these gems on a daily basis than other, more cultured flowers. Take the time to notice these "weeds" . . . they are art on display everywhere! You just need to look a little harder.

And a huge bonus. LOTS of images. :) Enjoy!

Friday, June 12, 2009

Pretty Purple

I know, I know. More flowers. But they are purple! Ok, so to be honest, I've never really been overly fond of purple. My sister on the other hand, is a huge fan of the hue and always has been. Me, I'm more of a green gal. But as I walked into work this morning, these little beauties caught my eye. I am fortunate to work at a company where we get to look at all of these lovely plants and flowers as we enter. Dainty, brilliant, bold, but in any case Purple. It may make me change the way I look at that color . . . for the better. Hats off to you, big guy in the sky. Some very creative handiwork, as well as painting living things in every shade of the rainbow.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Morning Sunlight

There's a certain quality about the morning sun that is really clean. It gives the subject a crispness that, to me, no other time of the day can. I love evening light for its warmth and glow. But in the morning everything seems fresh and new. So with that in mind, I took a couple shots of newness. The geranium bud and the sprouting green beans (you can still see where it broke out of the seed, which I thought was cool). And then there's the hosta leaf with the morning dew still clinging. So if you're an beginning photographer (not like I'm a pro or anything) , I suggest you start looking at quality of light. Does it warm your image, cool your image, wash out your image? All of these can be useful if it's what you want. Just be aware of it as you're shooting.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Wild Things

As you may already know, I am a fan of pretty much all things nature. I can see the beauty in nearly anything living, whether breathing or not. Now, some people may argue with me about the art of a dandelion. These guys spread like wildfire and wreak havoc on our yard. Truly, the back of our house is a dandelion puff city. I don't want to sound like I'm making a case to leave the beasties in your yard. I'm not. I bought a 40lb. bag of weed and feed the other day to exterminate said puffs (sorry naturalists). But before I make sure that their lilting offspring don't reach the soil, I pay them tribute. Because really, they are quite pretty. So deceiving, don't you think? They are wild and numerous in our yard. On the other end of the spectrum, there is this lovely wild columbine. Sitting alone, I spotted this magenta gem. Wild yes, numerous, no. Not in our yard anyway. So here is the contrast of my wild things. One I wish to iradicate, the other I wish would multiply. Whichever happens, I guess I'll continue to see the art in both.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Backyard Art- LIVE!

{Before I even start, I need to let everyone know that I have been lazy. Lazy and tired. My kids have been sick for nearly 2 weeks. No excuses, but just so you know. I'm going to try to get back on the Art Wagon!}

I am a bird freak. I confess. And lately, anything that moves in our backyard has been of particular interest to me. I love that all of the migratory birds are back. Grosbeaks, finches, hummingbirds, redstarts, you name it, I try to get my camera aimed in their direction.

My dog also likes the critters in our yard. He has a special soft spot for chipmunks. The little guy shown here must have been staring at our Deuce for nearly 10 minutes before the kids and I walked by to distract the dog and he made his getaway. They are so cute!

Although their beauty is obvious, it is fleeting. The birds are here for such a short while (in Minnesota anyway), and the chipmunks scurry under decks, lawnmowers and hosta leaves so you can't ever really get a close up look. So I consider myself very fortunate to get these photos. I can stare at the delicate wings and chubby, hairy cheeks all I want. What an artful bunch we have in our backyard. I hope they visit for years to come.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Artful Classics {In the Flower Sense}

Aren't flowers just beautiful? Especially in the Springtime when they are new and fresh. I planted all of my annuals yesterday in several large pots that sit outside our house. I'm crossing my fingers that the weather stays a little warmer and I don't have to cover them against frost.

These beauties are flowers here at work. The very popular [but very messy, in my opinion] Flowering Crab Apple tree. And another likeable standard, the tulip. So, basically I wanted to give a little credit to some oldies but goodies in this post. Sure they are seen in hundreds of yards in nearly every state, but there's a reason for that. They are beautiful, fragrant, and above all, they are art.