Sunday, December 16, 2007

Idiotic Idioms!

I may or may not have mentioned this already, but check out Idiotic Idioms, my weekly cartoon! I've emailed the Times Union and am hoping to hear back from them that they are interested in linking to it from their website. Keep your fingers crossed!

The reception on Friday at the Sherburne Memorial Library was wonderful. There was a decent turnout, and I had a chance to catch up with some family friends in Vermont. Thank you to the library staff for hosting this show, and to everybody who made it out that snowy night! The art will be hanging until January, at which point it's looking like it may shift to the Post Office in Killington - stay tuned for details!

Friday, December 14, 2007


Tonight (Friday, December 14th) is the art reception at the Sherburne Memorial Library at 2998 River Road in Killington, Vermont. The opening will be from 5-7pm. Hope to see you there!

Friday, December 7, 2007

Buy handmade this holiday season!

Well, you all know about my shop at Artwork is a thoughtful and personal gift, and buying handmade this season is a wonderful way to support people, rather than corporations, and it's always nice to be able to talk to the person who created something! Don't forget to take the pledge to buy handmade!

So this year I'm plugging handmade small businesses, crafters, and artists especially in my local area - meet some friends of mine. I can personally vouch for the superior quality and care in each of their products, and I see each of them at least once a week! Check out:

- Janet Nolin of ButterflyGrace Creations, my neighbor and friend who makes beautiful handmade journals and address books - she can also do custom books. She also sells handmade cards and photography here.
- Crooked Spoke Press (or Dan and "Fang" as I know them!), my boyfriend's neighbors who create hilarious tongue-in-cheek greeting cards (yes, and Christmas cards!) in their garage on an 100-year-old letterpress.
- SensibiliTeas, a loose tea shop run by a friend of mine, Donnalynn Milford, in the same building as my studio. I've given tea as a gift on so many occasions, and I'm hooked on it myself! She's got biodynamic, fair trade, and single estate teas too, and knows where each tea is made and how.
- The Candy Thief, my studiomate Casey's "Handmade Fancies For Funky and Fearless Females" - funky and feathery felt headbands, totes, handbags, pins, and neck coverings.
- Laura Neadle's cute animal shopping bag holders, great gifts for animal lovers. Laura's my teacher and also has a studio in the same building as I do. She also is an artist and has artwork for sale.
- Zack Zoll is another studiomate of mine and has photography and prints of his artwork available.
- Judy Olson Photography, a friend of mine who makes awesome hand-assembled calendars of her photographs and also does digital manipulations.

Happy Holiday Shopping!

Sunday, December 2, 2007

Images of Lady Jane Grey

Lady Jane, the inspiration for the Rolling Stones song of the same name, reigned as Queen of England for nine days, and nobody knows for sure what she looked like. Jane was well educated, lauded as one of the most educated women of her time. She turned to her books as an escape from her mother, Frances Brandon, who was abusive and who beat her daughter daily for being too "meek and gentle" in an attempt to harden her. In 1546, she was sent to live as the ward of the more nurturing Catherine Parr, the wife of King Henry VIII. After King Henry VIII died, Catherine remarried Sir Thomas Seymour, and then died herself during the birth of her only child.

Jane went back to the custody of Brandon, who forced her to marry Lord Guilford Dudley against her will. With the help of John Dudley, Duke of Northumberland, the throne was willed to Jane by Edward VI and she was named Queen in 1553. She refused to name Dudley King, but offered to make him Duke of Clarence instead. Within only nine days, the people of England voiced their support for Mary Tudor to take the throne, and she did, charging Dudley and Jane with treason. The sentence was death, and she was beheaded in 1554 at the young age of seventeen.

To date, there is only one authenticated artistic rendering of Queen Jane. Several portraits have been thought to be her, but evidence has shown that none of them were painted from life.

Battista Spinola, a Genoeses merchant, has left a contemporary report of Jane's appearance:
'This Jana very short and thin, but prettily shaped and graceful. She has small features and a well made nose, the mouth flexible and the lips red. The eyebrows are arched and darker than her hair, which is nearly red. Her eyes are sparkling...her colour good but freckled...In all, a charming...person...very small and short."

Experts at the England National Museum recently deduced that a portrait formerly thought to be Queen Jane was actually a portrait of Catherine Parr. Analysis of the jewels worn in the portrait below yielded this conclusion.

The "Streatham Portrait of Lady Jayne" underwent much scrutiny as well. Faint writing on the portrait reads "Lady Jayne" and was painted at the same time as the painting. Dr Libby Sheldon of the University College of London examined it using several techniques including spectroscopy and Raman laser microscopy, concluding that the painting is authentically Tudor-period in origin. However, dendrochronological analysis of the boards on which the portrait was painted yielded conclusive evidence that it was painted at least forty years after her death. So although it is possible that this is a copy of another painting that was painted while she was alive, there is no substantiation that this is what she really looked like.

In March 2007, Dr. David Starkey of Yale University discovered a brooch that was identified as portraying Queen Jane as the sitter in the portrait. By studying the jewelry worn by the portrait's subject, Starkey and experts conclude that "It is the first confirmed image of her painted in her lifetime."