Friday, October 21, 2016

On the Radio!

Elizabeth Stewart
This morning I was a guest on local radio station KZSB 1290AM with fellow mosaic artists Betsy Gallery and Wendy Brewer, and Miles Carroll from Menelli Trading Company. We were interviewed by Elizabeth Stewart on her show, Art and Antiques, and talked about our recent Pop Up Gallery, as well as a little bit about ourselves and our artwork.

I had never done anything like this and it was so interesting to see the workings of a radio station!  Elizabeth was so friendly and easy going, I was able to rid myself of early nerves and relax into the conversation and just have fun. I believe there will be a playback of the show, and if so, I will post it here. Thanks so much, KZSB, for having us!


Miles and Betsy


Tuesday, October 11, 2016

New Notecards Available

Folded notecards of my fennec fox mosaic, "Reverie," are now available on my web site. They measure 4x5.5", include envelopes and are blank on the inside. You can find them as well as my postcards and book, here. :)

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Mosaic Show at Menelli Trading Company

Betsy Gallery, Christine Brallier, Wendy Brewer
Had a great show last week at Menelli Trading Company in Montecito, CA. So many fun and interesting people to talk to, wine and yummy food, and of course, lots and lots of art!  My mosaics were shown with the mosaics of local artists Betsy Gallery and Wendy Brewer. We have very different styles from each other and even work in different materials.  I enjoyed the variety and hope the visitors did, too!  Thanks for hosting us, Menelli! 

Christine Brallier
Wendy Brewer
Betsy Gallery
Christine Brallier

Wendy Brewer

Christine Brallier
Betsy Gallery

Wendy Brewer
Betsy Gallery

Christine Brallier

Wendy Brewer

Betsy Gallery

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Pop-Up Mosaic Gallery

I will be showing my stained glass mosaics with two local mosaic artists, Betsy Gallery and Wendy Brewer, at Menelli Trading Company next week! I will also be displaying a couple of my mosaics featured in my book, The Night Before Christmas. The book will be available as well as postcards and notecards. The evening will feature wine by, hors d'oeuvres and an opportunity to meet the artists and observe the ancient method of mosaic making with traditional tools and materials…and of course the opportunity to purchase the perfect mosaic for yourself or a loved one. Valet will be provided.
When: Thursday, Sept. 29, 5:00-7:30 pm
Where:  Menelli Trading Company, 1080 Coast Village Rd, Santa Barbara, CA 93108
Hope to see you there!

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Mosaic Creatures

The One with the Flowered Fingers
The One with the Jagged Eye

Just finished these little guys, made from a couple drawings I did recently in my sketchbook. They are on 5" wood rounds and are made with stained glass, millefiori, beads and polymer clay.

Grouting was tricky since I didn't mosaic the whole wood piece. To protect the wood, I put blue tape all around the image and some aluminum foil over the bark, but the edges of the creatures were still dirty after pulling off the tape. To conceal it, I put a row of beads around each creature and actually prefer the result! I added some polymer clay leaves that I got from Klew's Gallery and they were done! 

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Mosaic for Glass Patterns Quarterly Magazine

It's Cold Out! - 10", stained glass, millefiori, beads

I was recently invited by the editor of Glass Patterns Quarterly Magazine to create a mosaic tutorial for their winter edition. This mosaic is 10" in diameter and is made with stained glass, millefiori and beads. The tutorial includes the design pattern and gives step by step instructions and photos on how to create it. The issue will be available in December and will also be available as a purchasable download.  

Grouting in progress

Friday, August 5, 2016

For Kim, With Love

I was just in Oregon where I visited my family and gave my sister, Kim, this little mosaic I had secretly made for her. More than a year ago she gave me a pendant that belonged to our mother who passed away in 2013. She asked me if I’d use it in a mosaic for her and it sat in my studio awaiting inspiration. I drew many, many designs, mostly of dragonflies, which remind Kim of Mom, but none of them were working for me and the pendant.

I then got the idea to use our mom’s art to inspire my own design. She had a fun, playful, and happy style of drawing that was so loose and relaxed and easy, I just love it. She drew houses and still-lifes of vases with flowers and bowls of fruit. She drew women’s faces and landscapes and lots and lots of animals, mostly cats. 

One of my favorite things she would do in my childhood is make hand-drawn cards for my sisters and I and place them on our pillows to find after school. A birthday card with two cats became the starting point for my design. This was her trademark style for funny characters and animals - dot eyes on happy faces, little hatch marks along the sides of their bodies. Simple, yet so expressive.

She also played on Photoshop and many of her creations were of cats holding balloons, like this one. I realized I could use Mom’s pendant as a balloon, with the little loop acting as the balloon knot. So, I had my idea!

The next challenge was the cat. I could’ve traced it to ensure it looked just like hers, but I wanted it to be from my hand so I set out to try and duplicate her cat with the ease and lightness she drew hers with. That sounds simple but it wasn’t! I must’ve drawn fifty of them (and got many stiff looking cats with little personality) before I felt I captured the expression and sureness of her lines.

I then transferred the design onto a sweet little sassafras wood slice – it smells so good! And I love how the bark edge creates a fun framing around the cat. I decided to use beads for the little hatch marks and wire for the whiskers and balloon string.

Mom frequently put belly buttons on her animals, so I made sure he got a little millefiori belly button. I put my favorite blue flower millefiori circling him to tie in with the blue beads and belly button. It took awhile to decide on the background, but I ended up choosing a light tan glass cut in lines to mimic how she would often draw on lined paper, including on her grocery lists! 

I grouted it, put a little hanger on the back and it was finished the day before I left for Oregon. I waited for a quiet time during morning coffee to give it to her. I hope that every time she looks at it she will remember the sweetness, playfulness, creativity, and all the wonderfulness of Mom, as well as the love I have for the both of them!