Artistico Blurro

No, I don't speak Spanish, but it would be nice.
However the words "artistic blur" seemed more catchy written as Artistico Blurro. Which is this month's challenge on Exploring with a Camera, presented by Kat Sloma.

"What is all of this about?" you might ask.
"Got it made," says I.
"No big deal, easy-peasy." I continue.
"This is something I excel at--shaky hand blur,  out-of-focus blur or paying-no-attention blur. I am Queen of the Blur." 

Fortunately I think that Kat had something  else in mind.
What she is suggesting is the INTENTIONAL--
This implies a photo a little bit soft at the edges;  a change of intentional movement; a deliberate change in camera settings; something placed over the lens, etc. 

 Once a month Kat offers a challenge which is really a very nice learning experience. She supplies lots of suggestions to make it easier...and it is complimentary.  It is open to all. Come join us.

One week ago we had our First Snow Storm.  Actually "dumped snow cone" is more accurate. When the sun peaked over the neighbor's ice covered roofs I was outside with Big Mama.
Getting inside the car and photographing out of the ice glazed glass was my goal...but the doors wouldn't open. So I settled for the outside.  I like the combination of "blur" and "focus."

You will think I am exaggerating, but this is the same icy morning. We still have one brave, endearing geranium clinging to life on the porch. There were filaments of crystal moisture clinging to the buds....while the blurred red petals are achieved using DOF.
A final farewell to a very hardy geranium.

This is my favorite picture. I am sitting inside a very bumpy car with nine passengers, lens glued to the window and attempting to catch scenes as they whizzed by.  What I love about this photo are the reflections that came through and the flash of light.  

Blur exaggerates exuberance.  Little Niko is practicing his fanciest hip hop moves. The movement is so fast that there is a translucency through his clothing.  Too bad the BBQ is in the way.

This week at Pixel Dust, Bonnie suggests sharing a photo that is simple.  Actually I think a blurred photo is a hallmark of simplicity as it eliminates distraction.  This is my choice. I processed it with Bonnie's  Monet's Morning texture.

What I learned from this Artistico Blurro assignment: I won't always discard photos that are slightly blurred. Rather I will think about how to use them in a more artistic form.
And I still need to try putting a piece of plastic over my lens.

Please join us next month when we will explore the Blur from another point of view.

Another reminder: simple can be beautiful. Thank you Bonnie and Kat

PS. remember that Photography and Prose is now part of this blog.
See preceding blog post. Thank you for dropping by. 
Next week will be the original painting give away.   See you then.


About two years ago, I started taking on line photography classes. 
Kat Sloma and Kim Klassen got me hooked.
Those fantastic experiences seemed an appropriate time to start a Photography Blog devoted to my budding skills and interest in the finer nuances of photography.

I have met many wonderful people through Photography and Prose.

But the 

has come.

I was beginning to feel like I was neglecting one or the other blogs.    
Occasionally what  I wanted to share was appropriate for either art or photography.
Photography is as much a part of my life as is Painting, the two complement one another.

 I will be posting both painting and photography to 
S. Furner Fine Art  (this site)
I hope you will enjoy the mix!!!

To celebrate my decision to Simplify,
 next week I will be hosting a drawing for an 
Original Painting.
(Details will follow next week with a photograph of the painting. Just in time for Valentines.)

Photography and Prose will be left open for viewing of all past posts, but no new articles will be added, unless at a later date I change my mind
(I have been known to do that!!!!!smile)

I do have some fun photography experiences to share!!!! And some new painting techniques.

If you haven't subscribed to this blog, feel free to do so....don't want you to miss the opportunity to win an original painting.

This message in a Fortune Cookie sums up how I feel about my years of blogging and 
YOU,  the readers:

How to Build a Lion's Head

CHINESE NEW YEAR--the Year of the Snake.

Not being particularly fond of snakes, wild or caged, 
let's concentrate on the Lion.
My lovely Singapore-daughter Sarah, who is seldom without her camera
sent me some great photos of a Master Lion Head Designer/Builder,  
after she visited his studio and workroom in Singapore.

The genius behind it all, this gentleman, is the last artist making these beautiful AUTHENTIC, TRADITIONAL Lion heads,  in Singapore.

His Studio and Workroom

It takes volumes of materials to create these magnificent pieces of art. 
He uses bamboo specially carved, mulberry paper to tie the pieces together, rice paper to cover the head and lamb's wool for the fur-like decorations.

And what holds it altogether.....the humble pan of glue and a well used brush! 

WOW the final product. 

This lion head is valued at 15,000 Singapore dollars because it has real gold on its head.  Without this "little" detail it would be closer to 1,300 sgd.
Yes that is a great deal of money. 

Thank you Sarah for sending this fascinating bit of 
"art" our way.

There will be more Chinese New Year coming soon. 

Cross posted on Photography and Prose

Back with the Lollipop Kids

Just a short and sweet little post today.  
Knowing that I had a couple of really fun on line classes starting this week, I thought I would  post what I have been working on, but now tucking away for completion at another time.

It is exciting to have several styles of painting and creating to juggle around.  I feel like I did when 7 years old, walking home from public school and lingering at the old general store that had gigantic glass jars filled with every possible kind of candy.......

Everything one can think of was used on this double page spread.
This Cutie Pie is spot on when she writes: art is messy! That is why it is loads of fun.

The start of a few pages in  a large art journal being prepared to paint Faces and Figures in. 

The Funny Bunnies can sit and cut and paste for hours and hours.  They are is loads of fun and I have been doing my share to keep up with them.

Hang on to all of those catalogs that flood your mailbox. This is super recycling at its best!

See you soon with some pretty cool NEW STUFF!!!

The Year of the Snake

Chinese New Year is fast approaching.  I love sharing posts about Chinese New Year.
This year it starts on February 10th.  
The year of the Snake...come on, can't we postpone that one?  Yuck.  

In learning, age and youth go for nothing; the best informed take the precedence.


With my first visit to Hong Kong, I became a collector of small paintings and commercial cards by Chinese Folk Artists.  Their clear colors, bold designs, and naiveté are very appealing.
 Of course this carried over to other Asian countries, where I am always on the outlook for Asian/folk art motifs.

These colorful, child-like innocence drawings are from Cambodia.

It you look at what the card is portraying, it is truly Cambodia.
The umbrellas to protect complexions and from rain; bikes pedal and motor, piled with entire families and a chicken or two; goods moved from one place to another on the same bikes; open markets; celebrations with special instruments and umbrellas; festivals the entire community participates in.

The artist is Stephane Delapree a.k.a. Stef one of the emerging, original painters in South-East Asia.  

Circus Clowns and Prancing Bears

The past few days the weather as been "dove" gray. 
Actually I rather like it this way, it is mind-mellowing. However for variety I thought I would share a few more "brightly-colored" Lolli-Pop paintings.

My birthday comes five days before Christmas....a bit awkward when I was little.  School was out for the holidays, so my name wasn't written on the blackboard under Today's Birthdays!  

But there was always a chocolate birthday
cake and ice cream. AND I lived next door to my grandmother, grandfather and dear aunt who spoiled me.

I loved, loved, loved pink cotton candy. Things haven't changed much in that department.  Today there are grand-kiddies to share with, which means I either hold it high above their heads or grab a handful to last a long time or smile and be excited to share this pink confection of spun sugar, their sticky fingers locked to mine.

Recently I wrote a list of words I recall from my childhood, things I either did or loved to eat. I gave myself two minutes to write the list. (try it, so much fun)

The words spring from an era when Bubble Gum was really Bubble Gum not a hard, tasteless ball of cement.
Of course that competed with Black Jack and Clove gum. Innocently, I never thought my teacher could actually "smell" it on me, until I was humiliated into "spitting" it out.
Can you tell that I was raised on a farm, along with chickens, sheep, pigs (really hogs), turkeys and feral cats.

Of course an eight year old girl had to do more than roam in the fields and be chased by rams.
Reading and Paper Dolls filled many hours.

My mother did try to put a bit of "culture" into my quiet daily existence.  Ballet: I think I was dismissed for lack of coordination.
Piano: teacher expelled me this time, for lack of focus and practice.

With the passing of time and traditions I emerged into teenager-hood!
So today my only carry over is the drawing. And here we are sharing child-like drawings.

Awhile back I shared three of five paintings I did for my grandchildren who live out of the USA.

Here are numbers 4 and 5.

Re-reading this post, there is something I left off of my "word-list:"  Cloud-Watching.
As a Little Bits I could relax by a creek bank in the weeds and prickly grass dreaming for long stretches of time as the circus train of clouds rolled is no different today, only I stay out of weeds and other itchy things.

Do you ever stop while driving, walking or interrupt what you are doing  just to stare at the sky, marveling at the colors, movement and formations of the clouds? I still see circus clowns and prancing bears.