Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Whose Your Martin???

It is always interesting when and where I might find inspiration for a piece.  This particular little table has humble beginnings but an incredibly meaningful end.  I did not even buy this table at the auction that I found a million gold nuggets.   It was going to the "no one will bid on it" pile and the auctioneer, knowing what I do for a living, said, "Steph, this is yours, you can find a way to make it fun."  I do like a challenge so I took it.  It was a laminate, I mean top to bottom laminate triangle table, quite hideous to be frank.  It has been sitting in my studio  (garage, but I always call it a studio, sounds more important) for quite sometime.  The other day my neighbor stopped by and noticed it, she casually suggested it looked like a guitar pick.  BINGO!  That was all I needed to run with. 

Guitar Pick = Great Guitar Song = Martin by Zac Brown Band.  The lyrics are as follows:

He was born in the woods
Torn from his home.
Well, he was naked,
And destined
To be out on his own.
And he waited in darkness,
Hoping someone might see,
From something so rough,
What a treasure he'd be.
Stronger than steel and wood.
Seen me through the bad and good.
And when I'm hanging by a string,
Every little thing
Is understood
Between Martin and me.
Well he's hollow in the middle
From the shape that he's in.
He's either filled up with music
Or locked in his shell again.
And it takes some fine tuning
To make him come around,
But he's a huge piece of me
And I'll never put him down.
Stronger than steel and wood.
Seen me through the bad and good.
And when I'm hanging by a string,
Every little thing
Is understood
Between Martin and me.
He is a good friend,
And he has his own voice.
And you get what you give;
Sometimes it's just noise.
But if you treat him well
He will last your life long.
And if you're honest and open
Well, he will write you a song.
(Write you a song, write you a song)
Stronger than steel and wood.
Seen me through the bad and good.
And when I'm hanging by a string,
Every little thing
Is understood
And when I'm hanging by a string,
Every little thing
Is understood
Between Martin and me.

Songwriters
ZACHRY BROWN
 
Why this song when there are so many great songs about guitars... because it is my best friend's favorite song by Zach.   When I dissect the song, I find that it plays to my heart about who she is to me. Through the bad and good, and when I am hanging by a string, she understands. Miss Jenni is that Martin in my life.   We all have or long to have a Martin, a constant in our world.  They are that person that remains stronger than steel and wood when you are at your weakest, withholding judgment.  I tend to put on a very strong façade to the outside world but there are times when I cry tears just like the rest of you all, Martin is there to wipe them for me.  When I have a hollow interior, I may just need some words or noise to fill me up, Jen is that girl, captain cheerleader to my one man team.  I am not always overt in my emotion or gratitude, it does trickle out through my art at times.  This chintzy little table that was going file 13, I needed that neighbor to say guitar pick and boom .... a piece for my Martin.  I chose my favorite lyric to paint on top and I dedicate it to her.  Love ya girl!
 



Thursday, June 19, 2014

A re-purpose artist's pre-sale thoughts

This is my nervous time... I have the trailer loaded down with double + stuff to sell. I am slowly going through my pre-sale "to do" checklist. My stomach is in knots. I wait for my Junk Hunk to get home from his day's work only to turn around and work for me -  trailer driver, unloader, cheerleader, a few of the hats he wears. It is a very emotional time. I told my kids "say a little prayer that all goes well this weekend at my sale." My son's response was, "do you just want to make a lot of money mom?"  My thought provoked response was something like this....  I am extraordinarily lucky to do what I love day in and day out; however people loving and purchasing my work is the validation that what I do is a job and not a hobby.  An artist's work is emotional, we may see a completed piece and think it is priceless, and have to wrap our heads around the fact that someone else may see it as worthless. Thick skin is imperative in this!!!! My goal is to add more shows to my resume, time becomes the battle! Oh, and having to round up transportation for each show.   So far, I have had great people that have "loaned" me trailers. Payment comes in all forms...a steak dinner, a bottle of Captain, or a Benjamin. I am going to take these next few days in and enjoy the ride, I love the heat and this is an outdoor show, I love people watching, and the eclectic shoppers have never let me down!! Fingers crossed my stock goes way down, I can contribute to my family's financial well being, and I come home to an empty garage and get to start with a fresh palette.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Out of Touch!

My apologies! I have been out of touch with my blog! I read so many and always find inspiration! It is time to get my blog on again!

Do you have a happy spot in your world?  Those spots come in many forms, mine just happens to be a filthy garage floor. What the???? Yes, a filthy garage floor. This makes more sense if you know that is the place that I get to let my creativity free flow.  It is where brush, hands, paint, canvas (furniture, rusty buckets, old doors, etc.) & soul come together! I put on my bibs and add flavor with some tunes. At times I am so involved with my creation, that I about come out of my skin if someone pops by. It is "my" time to let my brain either relax or solve the world's problems. To be present and help mold what one deemed as trash worthy into a piece I can sell at a show fills my cup up!

The point of my rant is to show you that the term "trash to treasure" is truly in the eye of the beholder.  A filthy garage is my treasure, my happy spot. Those spots vary for everyone and the rest of us need to withhold judgement. Many of those "spots" may seem perplexing to an outsider, but it is a cup filler for the one engaged. A 13.6 mile run could potentially remove the stressors of work, marriage, parenting, etc. for one, but create anxiety in another. Remember to open your mind, you may be lead to a path you never would have considered and it just may bring on a calm that dulls a storm.

hakuna matata


Monday, June 24, 2013

Junkstock ~ Summer 2013

Junkstock is the crème de la crème of Junk revival in the Omaha metro area.  It is the reward or light at the end of the tunnel for my hard work.  Junk has made a comeback and it shows by the amount of people that attend the festivities.  Last summer for its virgin tour, JS had about 6,000 people go through, we don't have final numbers but my best guess is well over 10,000 patrons.  Amazing turn out means bigger dollars for the bank account.  (In my case, it means a new pair of running shoes and some new clothes).  The event is something that is really indescribable, one has to actually set foot onto the barnyard to get the experience in full.  It is the quaintest of venues and the people are as eclectic as can be.  Vendors range from Antique Stores under canopies to Jewelry Designers to similar artisans like me.

When we arrived for set up, we had 2 full cars (one being a Yukon XL) and a trailer, FULL.  We left with 1/4 of a trailer.  We unload and set up, the art of display helps draw the customer in, so I find myself in a constant state of rearranging as items go.  I always have a couple of "pieces" that I am anxious to see that they are taken and loved on.  The 3 that I had in mind went.  Each left on a different day with a different loving family.  My first sale on Friday was a lovely lampshade that I handcrafted out of an old burlap sack.  The customer left it for pick up later in the day, I could have sold it 30 more times.  Wild!  I was not even sure it would go at all. 

Part of the fun, includes the fabulous food vendors and hillbilly music.  I had the BELT (Bacon, Egg, Lettuce, & Tomato) sandwich 2 of the days.  The wait was up to 40 minutes for one of these tasties, well worth it!  I partner with my neighbor for the sale, so we relieve one another for the food breaks, amongst other kinds of breaks if you know what I mean.

Arrival home, means unpacking what is left and renegotiating the game plan for the fall sale.  My wheels are already turning.  I can hardly wait!  See ya'll in the Fall!