Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Big Fat Art Barn

It never ceases to amaze me the creativity and talent of the artists I meet. I am especially amazed by artists that paint and draw. My skill for drawing and painting go as far as stick figures! Even then I am not sure if anyone would be able to depict the subject of my drawing! Sherry Hogan is an extremely talented artist that I met through the Dirt Road Artist Team.

Skinny Dipping By Sherry C Hogan

Below is my interview with Sherry.

Q: Tell me a little about yourself.

A: I was born on the battery in Charleston ,South Carolina and I have lived many places since that time. My parents traveled a good bit before I started school and since becoming an adult, I have moved about some. I have settled down, probably for good, here in Summerville, Ga.

Q: What are your other hobbies?

A: I love to read, crochet, ride horses, cook, restore old houses, and decorate them until they are beautiful again. I especially like gardening. I love being outside in the sunshine no matter what I am doing!

Q: What are you passionate about?

A: My passions are many I guess. I am passionate about my beliefs whether it is religion, mental and spiritual growth, always striving to be better…a more caring, more loving, more understanding person. I am passionate about being a good steward of this planet as a whole; caring for the people, the animals, the land. We have been given a grand blessing and we all should care for it and cherish it!

Q: What do you want people to know about you and your craft?

A: As far as being an artist, the only thing I could say is, this is the only thing I have ever really wanted to do or be…as far back as I can remember. I would hope that the desire and passion I feel for this thing called art would carry through to my endeavors and touch someone, at some time. My only desire for my art really is to make some body happy, sad, and hopeful, mad, angry, or even blissful…some reaction, some response. If I do that, then my art is speaking and I have done my job!

Q: What do you feel differentiates yourself from other artists in you craft?

A: I am not sure I can say that I am different from them all…no. It seems that, as far as technique goes, they have all been explored at one time or another. I guess we all strive to be different, but just as soon as you think you have managed it, you will find its been done. The only thing that sets any artist apart is his/her voice and how the artist manages to portray that in their art. Which takes us back to my other answer; I strive for a reaction!

By Sherry C Hogan

Q: Did you have a mentor?

A: The closest thing to a mentor that I ever had was a elderly man that was giving art lessons. He was an artist and a retired art teacher. One winter I took a few lessons from him in an adult class he was giving. After the class ended, he wanted me to continue. He gave me lessons free for a year and encouraged me in such a way that I truly, for the first time thought of myself as an “artist”.

Q: Your favorite materials and why are they are your favorite.

A: Not sure I have a favorite medium because I love to try new things but I do my paintings in a technique using color pencils and oil paint together which I know is an odd combination but it works so well for me.

Q: Do you dabble in other mediums?

A: Yes I do work in many mediums…drawing, pastel, oil, acrylic and more.

Q: How did you get started? How long have you been creating you art?

A: As a child, I managed to draw on everything. I am sure it drove my family to distraction. My aunt had one of those old tables popular when I was a kid, with the chrome sides and the colorful tops and I can’t think now what they are called. I could draw on it and then it just wiped off. I went to her house after school every afternoon, she would give me a snack and talk, and I would draw on the table. What started as a doodle evolved into something much more, I became engrossed in my drawing, and it became an entire scene of a nudist colony…houses, fences, people, and lots of trees and bushes and barrels, behind which all of the nudist could be found.I worked on it for a week and had the whole table covered. My obliging aunt left it there for me to work on …but that Sunday the minister came to visit and there was the nudist colony on her kitchen table. Needless to say, it was washed off after he left and my subject matter was screened from then on. I can’t remember a time in my life that I have not had a pencil in my hand.

Q: Do you sell on Etsy?

A: Yes, I have had an Etsy shop for about a year now. A friend clued me in to the sight. My website is bigfatframeshop.com. At the moment my art is only featured at my Etsy shop, http://www.etsy.com/shop/BigFatArtBarn and my brick and mortal shop.

Q: Do you do art shows?

A: I have done art shows in the past but not anymore. Maybe again in the future…we’ll see!

Q: Do you have a special story about a piece you created?

A: I do have a painting that is very dear to me. I was going through a tough time in my life and truly wondered why I even needed to be on this earth and thought about leaving. I was very depressed and saw no way out of my unhappiness. I got up one morning, the house was empty, and I decided to paint. I had no notion of what, I just picked up the brush and went at that canvas as if my life depended on it and in essence, it did. Because, when I finished I sat back and looked at it and all I felt was hope for the future and I knew that I would never ever be that despondent again; that there would always be a sunrise and a better day ahead.

The Future By Sherry C Hogan

Q: What is your favorite piece?

A: It seems my greatest joys, associated with my art, was always with pieces I gave away or did for someone. I did a backdrop for the Chattanooga’s Boys Choir once for a show they were putting on. The piece was a scene of the Chattanooga skyline at night with the stars out. It was huge about 15” high and all the way across the stage. When the curtains opened, the entire audience just gasped and then sighed and finished with applause. I was standing in the back of the auditorium and all I could think was this was better than any amount of money I could ever make on a painting.

Cows by Sherry C Hogan

Sherry’s Websites:

Monday, March 14, 2011

Fine Old Things

Spring is in the air – here in Bemidji, MN it is a balmy 43 degrees! For those of us that live in the great white north that is getting warm! Snow and ice are melting and I can smell spring in the air. I am ready to replace the bluish white with pristine green!

I have learned more about my kaleidoscope designs recently. When I cut them out in a circle and place them on a pendant, in a paperweight and sun catcher they may be categorized as a mandala! A mandala is sacred geometry and art. Although an authentic mandala is created by a monk with extensive training, but the concept is the same. When I began creating my kaleidoscope designs it came naturally for me, from my inner peaceful self. I find it interesting that I find peace and serenity in nature and then create a design that is used over many religions and disciplines as a meditation tool.

Enough about me……I want to share with you another fellow Dirt Road Artist team member I have had the pleasure meeting, Karen from Fine Old Things. Karen has a vintage Etsy shop. As the years pass I find more of my belongings are now labeled as vintage…..I chose to label myself as vintage….increasing in value as each year passes!

Karen was born in Chicago, IL and now resides in a suburb of Chicago, Itasca, IL.

She enjoys traveling, crafts, scenery photography and home decorating.

Her passion is her family including her husband, kids and grandkids. She especially adores her elderly mother that she loves dearly.

Karen is accomplished at scrapbooking and creating note cards and fridge magnets. It did not take long for her to master these skills and was taken by surprise how much she enjoyed her new hobbies.

Karen shares that she got started in her craft while searching for a hobby for her “old age”. She wanted to nurture here creative side and discovered scrapbooking.

Shopping is a true calling of Karen’s. While a member of Etsy she discovered that many of the items she owned were classified as vintage. This intrigued Karen, she is aware where to find more, resale shops and estate sales. She loves to search for “oldies but goodies” and is anxiously waiting for spring to hit the pavement in search for more treasures!

A favorite nostalgic treasure of Karen’s are china/porcelain figurines. They were popular during her childhood. Although they were a “Nick Nack” on display she was allowed to play and create imaginary worlds with them if she was very careful!

Karen has been a member of Etsy since March of 2009 when she opened her Scrapbook/note card/fridge magnet store Expressions123. She opened her vintage store Fine Old Things in January of 2011. She discovered Etsy when researching online craft stores as a new resource for selling her items. The fees for craft shows were becoming too expensive. Etsy’s size and features impressed Karen and the rest is history! Karen will occasionally participate in a an art show if the fees are extremely reasonable and are in a 20 mile radius of her home.

Here are a few of Karen’s favorite vintage figurines. She secretly hopes they don’t sell as she is quite fond of them. I think we all run into that problem with some of the items we sell!

Karen says this is a favorite because it is "simply beautiful to me with its fine detail & soft colors"

Karen states this is a favorite because, "resembles a cute little boy I know"

Karen is currently on the hunt for Limoges porcelain. She says there is nothing prettier!

You can visit Karen’s Etsy shops at the links below.



If you would like to contact Karen you can email her at:


Sunday, March 6, 2011

Joyann Green-Sabo

I met Joyann when I joined the Dirt Road Artists team on Etsy. I immediately admired here range of talents and nature inspired work. Take a look at her Etsy Shop Joyfulartstudio, and you will find she dabbles in many different mediums.

Joyann Green-Sabo was born in Charlevoix, MI and currently lives in Grand Haven, MI. She has also lived in Chicago, Northern WI, Orlando and Detroit.

Joyann enjoys reading, camping, rock picking. She is passionate about art, her soul mate, trees and water. She shares, “I feel complete when camped on the beach of Lake Superior with my husband Tim”.

Joyann employs skills from several different art disciplines, including stained glass, lapidary, metalsmithing, wire wrapping, mosaic, glass fusing, painting, and polymer clay. This is what differentiates her craft from others. The combination of mediums and disciplines provides a distinctive appearance to her art. She acquired a majority of her skills from trial and error, but also learned from classes, DVDs and books.
Dichroic glass cabochon in sterling silver with pink tourmaline, amethyst and chalcedony, hand made chain
Joyann’s favorite material depends on her current project. She explains that, “It would be too hard to choose just one type of material.” She appreciates the challenge of working with kiln-fired glass because, “the color but it is not always easy to get it to do what I want.” She also is fond of Polymer clay because she can manipulate it to create the shapes she wants. She enjoys sterling silver because it will accentuate almost any stone no matter what color. She likes using rocks in her work because it gives her a cause to hunt for more.
"Herman the Rock Star" Mosaic on a rock with turquoise beads for eyes marble base
Joyann started in acrylic paints when she was 20 years old. In her thirties, she started making sterling silver jewelry. When she married her soul mate, Tim, they started doing art/craft fairs and gem and mineral shows in Michigan and Ohio.

Joyann and her husband discovered glass fusing when they went to a local glass shop to pick out glass for someone to make a window for them. Tim had gotten Joyann a little kiln for Christmas to use with PMC, which she disliked. The woman at the glass shop said "you can use that kiln for glass" and the rest is history. Joyann took a stained glass and several fusing classes from her.

"Brilliant Garden" Mosaic on a recycled window.  Flower petals and bug bodies are fused glass

She has taught fusing classes for several years at a local store. She has glass in a local gallery and I'm in the process of sending more things to Gallery 35 in Alpharetta, GA.

You can visit Joyann’s Etsy shop at: http://www.etsy.com/shop/joyfulartstudio
London Blue topaz in sterling silver handmade filigree. Each piece of wire is cut, formed and soldered by hand.

Waiting and Watching" fused glass panel 30" x 18" custom for Robert. His reaction

"UPS just left. WOW WOW WOW what a beautiful piece of art. You are the best The colors are beyond words and the design is beyond beautiful. YOU ARE SO TALENTED!!!!!!! your e bay store does not even come close to capturing your talents. Please always keep my e mail address to share with anyone who may question your talents I would be more then happy to express my feelings and to share a picture of your work.Again I am so very happy that I had you as the artist for the renovations You have done a splended beyond expectations job  Many Many Thanks Robert"

"Jungle Flowers" Mosaic wall art. Flower petals and stems, leaves, cabochons all fused glass.