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12 Days of Giving : Monrovia Association of Fine Arts

December 19, 2014 in Art, Education, Events, Holidays, People, Photography, San Gabriel Valley, Seasonal, Social issues

LogoThis is a group that I have devoted tons of energy and time to over the last 10 years.  Their mission statement sums it all up:
“Enhance the lives of those within our community through interaction with the arts. Increase the opportunities of our children through art education.”

Its something I completely believe in, live and breath it.  I got involved 10 years ago as a way to help promote my art, but after a few meetings I found its something that benefits the entire community in ways I never knew.

My kids were in the MUSD system and I was disappointed to learn that Art Education wasn’t part of the curriculum as a separate class at the elementary level.  Monrovia Association of Fine Arts, MAFA for short, was just getting ready to make its first donation to the schools the year I joined to help fund art educatoin at the elementary level.  Over the course of the next few years our cash donations totalled over $75.000.  But it didn’t stop there. Read the rest of this entry →

‘Tis the Season for Crowds: Krampus on Parade & Renegade Craft Fair

December 13, 2014 in Art, Crafts, Downtown, East Side, Entertainment, Events, Fashion, Holidays, LA, Seasonal, Shopping

I braved not one but TWO crowds today.  First up…  The Echo Park Holiday Parade!!!  I had high hopes for this because I’d heard a bunch of Krampus revelers were going to be there and I was not disappointed.  If you’re one of the uninitiated, “Krampus is a beast-like creature from the folklore of Alpine countries thought to punish children during the Christmas season who had misbehaved… Krampus is said to capture particularly naughty children and drag them off into the black forest.” (wiki)

Krampus was made popular a couple years ago by a viral video of hairy-costumed nightmares rampaging through a northern Italian mountain community and beating the ever-loving crap out of passersby.  I needed the little one to see this so she’d be on her best behavior for the next couple weeks.  But unlike Italy where it is apparently legal to beat innocent tourists, it’s frowned upon here, especially for 6 month olds.  That’s probably for the best.

There were other parade participants but I honestly can’t remember who they were after seeing the Krampus steam engine car built by Bay Area artist-engineer Kimeric Smythe.  Also several members of the Salzburg-area Alt Gnigler Krampus and Perchten Troupe joined the parade of domestic brand Krampus… Krampuses?  Krampen?  Krampai?  Whatever.  It was a hoot.

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As if seeing Krampus in Echo Park wasn’t enough, I dragged the kid downtown to Grand Park for the Renegade Craft Fair.  It’s one of my favorites.  Although I had nothing to buy this time (poor wallet…), I got to see some new friends like the ladies at Ave Dee.  I bought a fanny pack from them at the Patchwork Show in Long Beach and it’s been my saving grace on short outings with the kid.  Contrary to what movies tell you, you do not need to travel everywhere with a full diaper bag breaking your back.  Sometimes you just need your wallet, cell phone, car keys, and an emergency pacifier.  Maybe some chapstick.  Ave Dee’s fanny packs are the perfect hands-free device for busy mommas like me.  And they’re cool!  Anyone who says fanny packs are lame are probably pretty lame themselves.  And I guarantee you they’re carrying around way too much crap.

I also stopped in on good friends and former roommates extraordinare from Outlaw Soaps, Russ & Danielle Vincent.  These amazing villians started their business in our house just a couple years ago and look at them now!  Masters of saponification.  Lauded by the mighty Oprah herself, even.  I highly recommend you jump on their bandwagon, stat; they’re moving their productions from Oakland to a little parcel of land just southeast of Lake Tahoe and they’ve quit soap making until the new digs are up and running in January.  When I saw them today, they had very little stock left.  That’s what happens when your goods are being bought for wholesale by the likes of national retailers like Urban Outfitters and ThinkGeek!  I’m so proud of them, I could scream.

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Graffiti Grammar Bingo and Spelling Bee: Exhibit 1

November 23, 2014 in Announcements, Art, ICME, LA, Rants

B-I-N-G-OBecause, this image:

I hereby announce the bLA Graffiti Grammar Bingo & Bee. Once I post five of these, the first commenter gets a prize if they type BINGO!!!! and then identify the error. (Exclamation points not required.)

Obviously, this one should be “you’re,” and I also deduct points because the elephant appears to be both balancing on a ball and levitating to paint the sign. You can’t do both, Jumbo. I know these things.

I welcome submissions. Ping me at the address on my profile to send me one.

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Does Antelope Valley Count?

November 21, 2014 in Art, Crafts, Events, Food & Drink, Holidays, Seasonal

Because if so, there are a few very groovy things on the horizon!

Crafters and Chili Cooks Sought for Holiday Event
at the Antelope Valley Indian Museum

The Antelope Valley Indian Museum State Historic Park is currently planning the fourth annual “Holidays on the Homestead,” a holiday-themed fundraiser for the museum to be held on Saturday December 6th from 5 pm – 8 pm. Participants are now sought for the “cowboy” chili cook-off and the handmade craft boutique.

Rose Edwards, the wife of the museum’s builder, was known for her chili and cornbread holiday feasts at their 1930’s homestead holiday celebrations. This delicious tradition is being revived in her honor! All chili styles will be considered; there is no registration fee for the cook-off.

Representing the talents of artist and museum founder Howard Arden Edwards, crafters are being sought for a craft boutique of handmade country and holiday-themed items. Booths are $30, supporting the non-profit Friends of the Antelope Valley Indian Museum.

For chili cook-off or craft booth information and applications, contact Jean Rhyne at (661) 946-6900 or [email protected] See below for more information about this fun event!

Street Seen: L.A. Bus Stops Can Be The Loneliest Places

November 8, 2014 in Art, environment, LA, Mass Transit, Photography, Transportation

busstop

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Call for entries at Los Angeles Center for Digital Art

November 6, 2014 in Art, Downtown, Entertainment, News, Photography, Technology

LACDA “Snap to Grid”- every entry shown

Snap to Grid show from the archives...click to embiggen

Yes, you read that right. Rex Bruce the owner of the LACDA prints and shows every single piece of digital art and digital photography that is submitted for this show. This is like close to its 10th year he is doing this. There is no jury you simply submit your work. There is no limit to subject matter or how many images you show. Just put your best foot forward as LACDA culls future artists for its big shows from these submissions.

I love this show as its a wonderful snap shot of the world as seen by digital artists and photographers at this moment in history.  There is no curation, but as a whole it tells a wonderful story of where we are artistically.

To enter there is a fee, up to $35 per image. Each image must be submitted with a registration form.  Once the registration form is complete and fee is paid you can upload your image HERE

Entry Deadline is December 1, 2014.  The opening of the show will be tied with the Downtown Los Angles Art Walk on December 11,2014.

DEETS:L.A. Center for Digital Art | 104 East Fourth Street | Los Angeles | CA | 90013  MAP HERE

Fall Artwalk at The Brewery

October 26, 2014 in Art, East Side, LA

This weekend was the Fall Artwalk at the Brewery, one of the largest artist-in-residence complexes in the world.

If you haven’t heard of it, it’s in the industrial district northeast of downtown, in a large complex/campus comprised of an old Pabst brewery (hence the name), an old Edison power plant building, and many warehouses, all of which have been converted into artist lofts. Not those crappy “artist lofts” that were just built five years ago in mixed-use spaces with cardboard walls…these are vast concrete caverns of loft spaces, the kind I’d like–you know, the kind you can just hose out when it gets dusty. And it does, because it’s right by the railyards and the freeway.

During Artwalk the majority of Brewery residents open their doors to the public so people can see their art–and, hopefully, so they can make some sales. It’s tough for a lot of people who put a lot of blood, sweat and tears into their work all year long, in relative privacy, to have hundreds of people tromping through their door, assessing their life’s labor, often snapping photos without permission, then turning and walking out. But they do it because they know it’s important for the public to be exposed to art and the work that goes into it.

Thousands of people show up twice a year for Artwalk. Next week, I’ll profile a handful of artists I found and discuss their work; as for now, here’s kinda a look at the scene. You should go next time. Just go early–the parking lots fill up early! Especially the parking lot I snagged–UPS HQ, next door, opens their parking lot for Artwalkers. Check out whose spot I got.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ho-leeee crap. Hello, Los Angeles, my love.

October 13, 2014 in Art, Blogging (in) LA, Fires, History, LA, LA bloggers, Metroblogging Network, People, The Valley, Vintage

Who’s got two thumbs (and her index fingers, with which she primarily types, like a spazzy T-Rex on a typewriter) and is back in LA?!

This girl.

Along these rhapsodic, elegiac and thrilled welcome-home lines I’m walking, here’s some songs to make you love your city again. Fall outta love? Don’t do what I do and leave.  Or do…it might be what you need to appreciate it.
Rilo Kiley, Let Me Back In: link: www.youtube.com/watch?v=aXZR0rwhXvs

“From the Eastern seaboard, the landlocked Midwest
The Keys, the Alps, the Black Hills and Budapest
With my heart in a sling, tail between my legs a-swinging
I’m sorry for leaving

But when the palm trees bow their heads
No matter how wrong I’ve been
L.A., you always let me back in

And you can bury me when my body breaks
In the earth that created me, in the Golden State
By my mama and her brother and their mama too…”

And then there’s this one, by the Delta Spirit, for the folks I left behind in the South.     ;)

I mean, this sorta already happened, and that fellow is now happily married, so….everybody come on out! Apparently I’m a great vector for changing your life.    :P

(Yes, this post is enormously personal. Kevin Roderick may have a field day with this one. Or he may not, which will make me feel like a loser. Whateves.)

“I want you to move to California for yourself,
I want you to find whatever your heart needs,
I want you to move to California for yourself, but not for me.

I want you to go out there and find somebody else,
I want him to treat you like I know he should,
I want you to find somebody new for yourself, if not for me.

all of the feelings that I know you never felt,
and all of the simple words you never said,
I want you to keep them like a secret to yourself, they’re not for me.

I want you to wander silent past my outstretched arms,
I want you to hide yourself from all I see,
and though my heart will fight until its dying breath, you’re not for me.”

 

Also…I love the video for this one.

So, yeah. I’m back. We did hot dogs, we did donuts. What do you think should be next?

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Summer Art Walks start this weekend in the SGV

June 27, 2014 in Art, Entertainment, San Gabriel Valley, Seasonal, Shopping

Man, dusting off my password and sharing one of my favorite fun things to do in the summer.  Wander about Myrtle Ave in Old Town Monrovia, hit a few of the night spots and enjoy some terrific art along the way.

Yup, its time for the Annual Summer Art Walks presented by the Monrovia Assocation of Fine Arts.  Now in its 10th year its a fine example of local art produced in my little corner of L.A.

Several of the local Art Galleries will be open, there will be live music as well as the usual Old Town attractions to keep you busy and entertained. The event will be held the last 3 Saturdays of June, July and August centered in the 400 Block of South Myrtle Avenue.  It will be held from 7-10PM on each of those nights.

If you are an artist that would like to exhibit and sell your work hit me up for the details.  [email protected]

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Paint n Play 2 Art Studio and Gallery robbed and ransacked

May 13, 2014 in Art, Law, Law Enforcement, News, People, San Gabriel Valley

Monday night, early Tuesday morning my friend Lisa Barrios business, Paint n Play 2 Art Studio and Gallery located at 418 S Myrtle Ave in Monrovia was burglarized and ransacked. I’ll be helping with the inventory of stolen art work, but our best guess tonight is easily 10K in art alone was stolen from the upstairs gallery.

Shortly after midnight the neighboring business caught this persons image trying to open their door at the rear courtyard. He stopped long enough for his picture to be taken, then went one door south to the Paint n Play 2 Art Studio and Gallery. From there, someone, presumbably this person of interest, broke open the rear door and entered Paint n Play. About 15 minutes later a figure is seen on the Myrtle Avenue side of the business loading stuff into a shiny dark sedan possibly a Honda or Toyota. Read the rest of this entry →

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Act up? No ACT-SO

April 28, 2014 in Art, People, Photography, San Gabriel Valley

ACT-SO?  Afro-Academic, Cultural, Technological and Scientific Olympics.  Its a program within the NAACP where young people are mentored by pro’s in a field to help them grow and develop their talents.  Its about grooming the next generation to go forth and do great things.

Saturday was fun, different for me. It all started 10 days ago when Lois Gaston of the Pasadena chapter of the NAACP contacted Lisa Barrios, the Vice President of the Monrovia Association of Fine Arts (MAFA) for help in locating photographers to judge a  coming competition.  Lisa referred her to me and before you know it I had rounded up other photographers to help me with the judging.

In  short order I had the needed photographers in line to do the judging.  First up was Enilde “Ginger” Van Hook, a fine art photographer from Otis College of Arts and Design graduate as well as teacher.  Next up was Joseph R Davis artist, digital artist and photographer.  Rounding out the judges was yours truly. Read the rest of this entry →

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So Cal News Photographers Fine Art show Saturday

April 18, 2014 in Art, People, Photography, San Gabriel Valley, Shopping

A rather large group of Los Angeles news photographers and a few hand picked others will be showing their fine art photographs of Southern California at a reception they will host Saturday 4/19 starting at 7PM.   There will be light refreshments and wine served at the reception.

Among the photographers there will be Stephen Coleman, a KABC 7 cameraman who has been documenting Los Angeles for years and has many drop dead gorgeous images.

Deets: Paint n Play Art Studio and Gallery, 418 S Myrtle Avenue, Monrovia CA 91016 626-258-4848  MAP HERE

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Empty Bowls comes to Monrovia

March 22, 2014 in Art, Entertainment, Events, Food & Drink, News, San Gabriel Valley, Social issues

Empty Bowls is an international grass roots movement. In simplest terms ceramists donate their talents, and sell bowls filled with donated food to support local food banks and hungry families. The cost of the finished and filled bowl is $10 and you get to keep the bowl to take home with you.  The proceeds from this event will be split between donations to the Foothill Unity Center and MUSD families.

In my little corner of L.A Empty Bowls is being coordinated by Meaghan McCarthy. She is working with the local adult school go create bowls.  Not just a few, but a goal of 500 bowls to be finished and ready for sale with food by the June 21, 2014 sale. Read the rest of this entry →

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ICME: Chandalier Tree, it just makes me happy

January 12, 2014 in Art, East Side, ICME

This just makes me happy.  Its man vs nature.  Its just silliness.  Something we need more of.  Its simply a few dozen lit chandaliers and a grand old tree.  Please excuse the photo, I grabbed it with my phone after dark, certainly just at dusk might have been a bit better, but beggars can’t be chosers.

Its located at the corner of Silver Lake Drive and Shadowlawn Ave a block off Rowena.  MAP HERE.  There is a big red curb in front of the property so you do need to park on adjacent streets if you can find it. Be kind to the locals and don’t block a driveway.

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Snap to Grid show at L.A. Center for Digital Art deadline today

December 2, 2013 in Art, Downtown, Entertainment, Events, Photography

Yikes, I don’ know how I slept through this one, maybe it was Auto Show Frenzy of the last few weeks.  Regardless. The Snap To Grid show at LACDA has got to be my absolute favorite show.  Why?  Its a take all comers show that gives you a wonderful snapshot of where we are as artists and what we are doing right now with digital photography and digital art.  The stuff is amazing.

If you are interested in showing at this show all you have to do is fill out an registration form (you won’t be rejected) pay your $35 admission and upload your images.  Simple as that.  You register HERE.  You upload HERE.  The deadline is today to do so.

Some important information:

  • Show Dates: December 12, 2013-January 4, 2014
  • Deadline for entries: December 2, 2013
  • Opening Reception: December 12, 7-9pm, 7-9pm

L.A. Center for Digital Art, 104 East Fourth Street  Los Angeles, CA  90013