Friday, December 3, 2010

I just gotta dance!

Trying to pull everything together for tomorrow show is not so much stressfull, lets call it challenging. Insert Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros. I can't explain why I love this song, but it is hard not to get moving when I hear it. So get off your rear end and get movin'

You don't need to be a "hippie" to enjoy being free... To appreciate this "freedom" you just have to reclaim the word wealth. It's not monetary, it's momentary; sharing in good company of those whom wish to celebrate life. So take stock of your "home", find how wealthy your are.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Local Connection Group Exhibit

I have three pieces in the upcoming group exhibit hosted by Local Connection Artists Co-op. There will be a wide variety of work on display by current members of the co-op.

The show is this Saturday, December 4 from 6-9 pm at the Phoenix Opera House on the Rushville Square. Refreshments and hors dourves if you choose.

As always the show is free and open to the public.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Re:Form School

Re:Form School by The Masses from Redu on Vimeo.

for more info visit

Just in case you have forgotten or where unaware, I am a high school art teacher.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Update 10.29.10

Work has been progressing on many of the current pieces I have been working on. I have had to slow down on some wood stuff to work on stone carving for my sculpture class. Very close to being finished with it. Now it is on to fine sanding and constructing an appropriate base to support it. Most likely I will be using a salvaged beam from a barn a friend of mine is taking down.

Just finished sculpting a replica of a human heart. This one is considerably bigger than the real thing. Thankfully it made it through the firing process without any problems. All of the clay I am currently using is recycled from discarded projects so there is always that chance for trouble with impurities and air pockets. Using the recycled clay fits in perfectly with my focus on not purchasing material to create stuff.

Last night during class I was able to work for about four hours on the pillow that goes along with the heart and suitcases. Very pleased with how it is coming together. Still plenty to do, but progress is being made.

Monday, September 27, 2010

6 hours of work!

Just when I thought I would not have time this weekend to wife took the girls to shop for fabric for their halloween costumes. Anyway this was an opportunity to knock some stuff out.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

As far as working on sculpture...well things have slowed down a bit. Being back at school for work and taking a sculpture class, and blah, blah, blah...and oh yes...I have a family. Time for working on my current projects has almost become non-existent. Yet I am finding little chuncks of time here and there.

The sculpture class is a real treat. No kidding. I have been blessed with the opportunity to take this class in more ways than one. First, a fellow teacher gave me three grad credit tuition waivers therefor I did not have to pay for the class (thanks Liz!). Second, I am working with stone for the first time and learning from a master sculptor, Don Crouch at WIU. It's all good.

Anyway, the phone booth is in the final stages. I have narrowed my punch list down to about seven items that remain before I can call it finished. Yes, I know...a punch list for an artwork. I have found that this works very well for me since I do not get to spend huge chunks of time on a piece. It really helps me focus since I can become easily distracted by other ideas and projects.

Currently I have three pieces that I am working on. My hope is to have them complete by the end of November/early December. I would like to show four pieces in this years Local Connection Artist Co-op Group Exhibt wich will take place the first or second week of December.

Just a few hints. Ladders, suitcases, mailbox, rolling carts, pillows, telepphones and a human heart (sculpture of course). So if any of these items sound interesting to you than stay posted I will let you know when they will be available for viewing.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

As Promised

Here are some shots of some of the pieces I have been working on this summer.

I'm there...

End starts You’ve already started. That’s the first thing. The first thing is that you’ve already started, you’re already working, you’ve been working on this, working up to this, for some time. Now start again. Start with a passage from a book. An image or a description. Make the work, make a work, make it work. That’s a start. Now start again. Start with the ends, the bits and pieces, the scraps and remnants, now make them fit, make them work. That’s another start, a fresh start, now you can start up, once more, and. Let me explain. You are in your element. You have everything you need. You always have more or less everything you need, and if you don’t, if something’s missing, if something’s needed, then you can always make do, make ends meet, make the little ends meet to make the big end work. Let me explain myself more clearly. You seem to operate within a certain economy. Nothing, it seems, almost nothing goes to waste, with the exception of a certain dust, a certain expense or expanse of fine grit. There is no such thing as a scrap, everything is a piece, everything is more or less of a piece, somehow, somewhere, every scrap has its origin, just like every cut has its reason, and every endeavour its end, its destination. Let us say that you set out to build some thing, perhaps a machine or a contraption. Let us imagine that you succeed, then perhaps out of the scraps, perhaps or rather certainly out of these odds and ends you will want, you will set out, you will end up building something, something else. Something different, something without an end, something built out of odd ends, odds and ends, bits and pieces, flotsam and jetsam. Allow me to give you an example. A stage gives out onto a series of curtains (this is a work). These interlocking pieces of wood form a model of the human inner ear (this is another work, a model built from its scraps). Here is another example: it’s an archive, an archive of scraps. There’s a drawer full of odds and ends, except the drawer is full of glue or resin, and the resin or the glue has hardened, and the bits of the pieces are irrecuperable. Or this, this one last example and then we’ll call it a day. You’ve made this and that, you’ve stacked things here and there. You’ve made these things, but you’ve started on some new things, and the first, I mean, the older things, as far as you’re concerned, they’re done, finished, I mean, more or less or just about, they’re just about finished, because there’s always a remainder, and the remainder is a scrap, and scraps are the seed, and the scraps pile, and the works pile up, and if you have something over there, that’s right, under there, under that heap, under that pile, that pile of things that you neither need nor really care to move, then you may as well have lost or destroyed it, you may as well have gotten rid of it. But you haven’t and you won’t and so there will always be a remainder, and the remainder is a scrap, and the scrap, the scrap is the seed. And the seed is there at the start, for the start, the start of something else, something new.
-Julien Jonas Bismuth

New photos up later today.

read above statement.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010


Photos of the current piece I am working on. 84"tall x 33"wide x 33"deep. Yes sir it is a full/life-size pay phone booth. Thanks to Steve and Shelly next door I was able to aquire some much needed lumber and sheet goods to get this project rollin'.

Much like the mailbox (updated photos coming sometime) this one will utilze a light as well as references to Medieval altarpieces. Doors still have to be constructed, along with the phone and top.

Color has not been decided upon, yet it will be monochromatic.

Today I shut down early, around 3pm since it was well into the upper 90's with a heat index of 110. And humid as all get out.

Thursday, July 1, 2010


Why do we set limits upon ourselves? In some instances it is necessary, yet in the areas of creativity...well it boxes us in.

I'm tired of being boxed in. I think I will just get rid of the box all together. Be on the look out for updates about current work that can't be boxed, wrapped or packaged. This new body of work will still tell a story (which I believe is very important), yet it is what it is...and that is the why.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

New work

Here are some process shots of a few new piece that I have been working on. Both pieces have a ways to go, yet the payphone piece is almost complete. I have started really moving away from flat surfaces and been working more three-dimensionally. If you have specific questions about size, purpose, meaning etc., feel free to shoot me an email or post a comment.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

One Proud Papa

My oldest daughter's pastel drawing was selected as "Best of Show" in the elementary/middle school division at our annual district art show this past weekend. This annual show typically has anywhere from 700-750 pieces of art work from students in grades 1-8. Believe it or not, my daughter is in first grade!

And before you ask, I had no input on this drawing. She is an amazing little girl and is very imaginative and creative...all on her own. I am so happy for her.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Update 4.16.10

Still going at it. This piece is finally coming together. I still have some line work to do on the door tops and corners. The construction of the phone is moving forward as well. I have been carving the handset and will soon be starting on the remainder of the phone. I have not even addressed the exterior yet. The title is still in a state of flux as well. Several ideas have been discussed.

I am finding out that I must be patient and have realized that work of this style/medium does not happen quickly. This is a dramatic change from the fast paced style of my previous paintings. As always shoot me an email or leave me a comment.


Friday, February 26, 2010

Michael Swain - Sewing for the greater good

Once a month, artist Michael Swaine sets up an outdoor sewing machine in San Francisco's Tenderloin district, and offers free on-the-spot clothing repairs for people in the neighborhood—a particularly friendly and useful form of public art.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Where I'm headed...

Here are some process photos of the new sculptural piece I am working on. I have been able to work quite steadily on it for about the last week. As most of you know from previous posts I am wrestling with the ideas of communication, hearing, listening etc. More importantly how technology through out time has been a benefit to us in so many ways, yet at the same time pushes us farther and farther from interacting on a face-to-face level. Even more importantly (yes more important than previously stated) how does this all relate to our communication with God. Noise of all sorts, audible and visual, clouds our minds every moment of the day. I can't help but think this is having an impact on our relationship with the Creator. More on this idea later. Stay tuned.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Makes you think...


It appears that world traveler and street artist ABOVE ( recently made it over to Cuba to put up a stencil and installation regarding the current situation in Haiti, which is only 90 miles away from Cuba. The video shows a young boy holding a Haitian flag about to set up to help his “neighbors.”

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Print is finished

Here are a few shots of the completed print. I did change the silver to green. It is currently available for purchase directly from me if you live in the Rushville, IL area or you can pick on up on my Etsy site

Friday, January 29, 2010

New Print for Apparent Project

This is the outline of a new five color, 19x12", screen print that I am creating to raise money for a Christian arts mission in Haiti known as the Apparent Project (you can check them out at AP trains Haitians in art and craft techniques and helps them market and sell their work to create a steady income. The organization is headed up by Corrigan and Shelly Clay who moved their out of a love for orphaned children. Currently they are putting their energies in aiding and assisting those in need due to the recent earthquake.

Anyway this print will most likely be an edition of 100 and will cost $25 plus shipping. All $25 will go directly to the Apparent Project. The colors will be silver, gold, medium blue, brown and transparent white.

I hope to have the print available for purchase late next week on my Etsy site. If you are reading this please pass the word about this print. I would love to sell all one hundred of them!

Monday, January 25, 2010


Well I posted a request on Facebook to all of my friends letting them know that I was in need of some new material for some upcoming artwork. Old, discarded, broken dressers, doors, cabinets and the like were part of my request. A few people got back to me, but one couple had a gold mine of material. Better yet, they only live one block from my house! Steven and Shelly Akins have a stash of material that they were more than happy to unload. Of course, I was more than happy to take it. The Akins just moved into the house this past fall and as with most home purchases they come with some unexpected surprises. One of those surprises was having to put on a new roof (ouch!) and the other was a boat load of lumber from various sources. So this past Saturday afternoon I stopped by and Steven led me to a shed/workshop that was on the edge of their yard. Upon removing the rusted padlock and swinging open the door well, I was speechless. Piles, stacks of all sorts of lumber oddities. The former owner was a woodworker and more importantly he made quite a few things form recycled materials, long before it was considered "green".
Anyway, here are a few photos of what I came upon. Thanks Steven and Shelly!


Saturday, January 16, 2010

Got Junk?

Notice: Artist In Need of Materials.
Cheapskate artist is looking for old, worn out or broken wood furniture to use in upcoming artwork. Dresser, chairs, doors, cabinets, tables, benches etc. Solid wood only. Please no MDF also known as sawdust and glue. Please contact the artist if you might know the whereabouts of said materials. Oh, and I do mean free stuff. Thank you and God Bless America.