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Flora and Fauna - Artisan Handmade

 

 

The Earth is such a beautiful place to live on, if we just take the time to look and observe.  No matter where we go, unique plants and animals can be found, two very important parts of any ecosystem.  I’ve been lucky to have lived in many places and many different ecosystems, from Central Texas to North Carolina, from near Georgian Bay in Canada to a forest in Northern Virginia, from North Texas to an island in South Carolina.  Now I live in the gorgeous Desert Southwest.  The flora and fauna of each place was awe-inspiring - some the same but, most often, very different.  Since I love what Mother Nature has to offer, I find it all VERY, VERY interesting and want to keep on learning about how our wonderful Earth functions . . . and what we need to do to heal it.   

 

 

 

Flaunting Flowers - Artisan Handmade Three for Thursday

 

 

"If we could see the miracle of a single flower clearly, our whole life would change" – Buddha


 

Spring is in full swing here in the Desert Southwest.  Since there was more rain than normal during the winter and on into spring, the flowering trees and the wildflowers, especially the poppies in the Franklin Mountains, have been spectacular.  The various cacti and succulents haven’t started blooming yet with all their sometimes garish colors, but they should be extra pretty, as well. This time of the year, my thoughts always turn to working in the flower beds, trying to decide where to put “just one more” plant.  Watching plants reawaken and start their flowering is indeed a miracle . . . and does change my life for the better.

 

With flowers in mind, I decided this week’s Artisan Handmade Three for Thursday would feature flowers.  Three floral inspired handmade pieces, which turned out featuring mostly pink flowers, were chosen from the shops of handmade artisan friends.  The artisans are: Jacki of Christie Cottage; Roxanne of watercolorsNmore; and me, Catherine of Shadow Dog Designs. I hope you enjoy the handmade beauties.  And be sure to visit the shops of the artists for even more gift ideas - for someone you love or for yourself.

 

 

 

 

Shades of Purple - Artisan Handmade - Three for Thursday

 

Up until the 1850’s, the color purple was most often associated with nobility.  Cyrus, a Persian king, wore a purple tunic, adopting it as his royal uniform. Some Roman emperors even forbade their citizens from wearing purple clothing - under penalty of death. During the Byzantine Empire, rulers wore long purple robes, used purple ink to sign their orders, and their children were described as being “born in the purple.”  Why? The reason was that a pound of purple wool cost more than most people earned in a year! The color purple was produced from a species of rare sea snail, centered in the ancient Phoenician city of Tyre. It took as many as 250,000 of the snails, which produced a purple staining mucus, to yield just one ounce of usable dye. After the fall of the Byzantine empire in the 15th century, the upper class monopoly of purple fabric waned - but it was still expensive.  It wasn’t until the 1850’s with the creation of the first synthetic dyes that the color purple became more widely available.  

 

I, for one, am glad that the color purple is now easily attainable.  With that in mind, this week’s edition of the Three for Thursday blog is titled “Shades of Purple.”  Three items from three handmade artists are featured. The artists are: Cathy of Crafting Memories; Roxanne of watercolorsNmore; and me, Catherine of Shadow Dog Designs.  I hope you enjoy all the different shades of purple found in the beauties shared.

Colours by Donovan - Three for Thursday

 

 

A couple of days ago, while I was picking up some veggies and fruit from our local Whole Foods, I keyed in on a song that was playing in the background - a song I loved waaaaay back when.  When I got home, I looked it up on YouTube, played the video and then let the mix of music from the mid-60’s to early 70’s continue playing. Brought back to many happy, and some sad, memories.  One of the songs that played was Donovan Leitch’s “Colours,” a song I adored then and still adore now. I get lost in the peaceful lyrics, the lovely simplicity of the folk guitar accompaniment and Donovan's hauntingly beautiful voice.  The song was released in 1965 and, 54 years later, is still a classic. I have played it over and over since “rediscovering” it. The lyrics are shared near the end of the post.

 

Here’s a link to the YouTube video (version without harmonica): 

Donovan’s “Colours” 1965  

 

And here’s an incredible live version of the song with Pete Seeger sitting in on banjo: 

Donovan "Colours" 1966

Original Art - Three for Thursday

 

 

 

“The paint is simply an extension of my hand, my mind.” ~ Antonio Masi, Watercolor Artist

 

 

Having never been a painter - although I did dabble in watercolors for a bit and realized very quickly I had no talent for it besides “abstract blobs” - I am always astounded at the beauty that artists reveal on their canvas of choice.  I think you will also be amazed at the wide variety of techniques and styles of the three painters featured in this new Three for Thursday blog. The artists are: Sharon of RavensBendFolkArtRoxanne of watercolorsNmore; and Jacki of Christie Cottage.  I hope you enjoy these choices and that you will visit their shops to see more art.

Need Some Love - Artisan Handmade

 

 

 

There is something ALL handmade artists go through:  you design a beautiful piece of jewelry, or create a fabulous painting, or crochet an intricate piece of table art, or . . . the list goes on and on.  You have put so much of yourself into the piece, you love it and you are sure it will sell very, very quickly. Unfortunately, there it still sits in your shop . . . and you have no idea why!

Artisan Handmade Beauties - Three for Thursday

 

 

 

My favorite reason to buy handmade is just that - it's handmade, which means quality, and a whole lot of love!

 

Cammi Higley

 

 

I love the quote above from Cammi about handmade . . . because it’s so TRUE!  The artists featured in this week’s Three for Thursday blog definitely create quality products, all made with HUGE doses of love.  The artists this week are Roxanne of watercolorsNmore who uses watercolors to convey the beauty of Florida;  Sue of starspiritstudio who creates amazing rustic terra cotta findings and reclaimed tin earring dangles; and, Sharon of RavensBendFolkArt who paints one of a kind functional items with a whimsical folk art flair.  If something catches your eye, please be sure to click on the photo or the link below the picture to be taken to the item for more photos and information. I hope you enjoy the unique artisan handmade items featured below. And remember: BUY HANDMADE!

 

Merry Christmas and a Joyous New Year!

Wishing all a very MERRY CHRISTMAS and a joyous NEW YEAR.

 

Anyone who knows me, knows that I love animals of all kinds.  When I saw "The Christmas Star" painting by Lynn Bywaters, I had to share it.

 

 

 

 

Deep peace to you and yours during this holiday season.

 

 

Flora and Fauna - Wonderful Handmade Wednesday on Indiemade

 

 

 

I have always admired Walter Cronkite on so many levels, but mostly as an intelligent and reliable newsman and as a vital, moral human being. Even though he died in 2009, I still remember his plain spoken grace in delivering the news, from moonwalks to war, assassinations to peace treaties and thusands of other topics. A favorite quote of his, made 2005 (but still oh so relevant today), is this one:

 

“I am joining the hundreds of thousands who shall be marching in the Virtual March on Washington to Stop Global Warming in order to demonstrate the concern that we all hold for the future of our planet and all the living things — flora, fauna, human and animal — that exist upon it. The governments of the world have tarried long enough, and the United States is scarcely without doubt the greatest culprit among them.  We the people have the strength to bring our country from our weak-kneed stumbling gait in the last ranks of reason to the leadership of the great march to environmental victory.”

Autumn Art Fest, Saturday, September 23, El Paso, Texas

 

 

 

On Saturday, September 23, people who love great, home grown art festivals will make their way to the house of Rachel and Michael Davis to browse and (hopefully buy) a wide variety of artisan handmade items, amny of which are one of a kind pieces.  The Autumn Art Fest will be held on a large, tree shaded lawn during the prettiest time of the year in the Texas / New Mexico borderlands area.  To be able to take part in the festival was by invitation only and eighteen artists accepted.  So you know the quality of the handmade pieces for sale is extraordinary.

 

Date:  September 23

Time:  10:00 am - 5:00 pm

Admission:  Free

Address:  5737 Montoya (in the Upper Valley)

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