Friday, March 30, 2007

Wednesday, March 21, 2007


Just outside my studio door
is an orange tree.

The tangy, sugary sweet scent
of orange blossoms
hangs heavy in the air.

Even with air so still
not one leaf rustles,

the scent drifts in,

like freshly baked cookies
just out of the oven.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007


Recently I had the opportunity to see the Dutch Masters exhibit at the Phoenix Art Museum. It was such a great reminder of how important it is for artists to see original art. I look at art in books all the time, but have few chances to see originals by the masters. I've never been to Europe, I've never been to New York, so when these traveling exhibits come to town they open the door to a whole new world of art for me. The last one I saw was Norman Rockwell. It had a profound influence on my style. Now, I don't think I'll start working in a "Golden Age of Dutch Art" style, but still, just seeing the detail, the use of light (and more importantly the use of dark) makes you think about your own work.

Overall the thing that really blew me away was the size of the pieces. Some were so small! I had no idea. The detail in these small paintings was simply amazing. But I have to say the piece I found the most intriguing was huge! I don't remember the artist; I believe the title was "The Merchant and His Family". I could have stood there studying it for hours. Out of the work by Rembrandt himself, I found I loved looking at his etchings the most of all. His detail and use of dark is what will stay with me, and I hope will reflect in my own work at some point in time.

*Self-portrait as the Apostle Paul,
Rembrandt van Rijn, 1661.
Collection of the Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam.

Monday, March 12, 2007

Arizona Illustrators Forum

Introducing the Arizona Illustrators Forum!

We are a group of children's book illustrators with a wide range of styles, at various levels in our careers, but with one common goal. To create fun and entertaining art, through picture books, for kids and parents! The AZIF was formed to promote the careers and education of its members and further the art of children's illustration.

The following members have work on display in the Art Stage Sound Gallery show. (The topic in the previous posting.) Just click on any name to see their work.

Tanja Bauerle
Julie Gissler
Debra Pehrson Haun 
Michael Hale 
Molly Idle 
Laura Jacobsen 
Megumi Lemons 
Devon Meyer 
Juana Martinez-Neal 
Kathy Parks 

Mikela Prevost

Gail Maki Wilson

Wednesday, March 7, 2007

Gallery Show

Time to share smattering of photos from "First Fridays" opening night at the ArtStageSound gallery. The show "A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words" featured an exhibition of artwork from a group of picture book illustrators, the Arizona Illustrators Forum.

I just had to show this outside shot of the gallery. You can't always judge a book by it's cover! Actually, I thought this shot was kind of cool. I really liked the perspective leading to the right with the arrows pointing to the left, and the way the bright blue and green frame the palm tree shadow. Anyway, for those who want to browse, here's a photo gallery of the gallery!

Julie Gissler Barry and me.

Opening night with family, friends and a crowd!

Me and some of my work.

Tanja Bauerle

Me, Debbi, Kathy, and Julie.

A few Sunday viewers.

My daughter and her boyfriend stopped by too. Too cute!

Special thanks to photographer Bailey Wilson.

Thursday, March 1, 2007

Art Detour

A brand new Children's Illustration group is having their very first show this weekend as part of the Phoenix Art Detour. Arizona Illustrators Forum (AZIF) is a group of 15 illustrators with various styles and tons of talent! So if your in the Phoenix area be sure to stop by. The tour runs Saturday and Sunday.

Opening night with all the illustrators is Friday at 6pm at the Art Stage Sound Gallery. If you make it, ask around for Gail. It would be great to meet with you. More info can be found at: This is the first show I've done, so I'll be sure to take pictures and post them next week!