Friday, December 31, 2021

More Chihuly Glass at Night


I have a few more night time shots of the beautiful Chihuly glass sculptures at the Desert Botanical Garden.  Above are the Neodymium Reeds.  

To the left is the one called "Sol de Citron". A good name for such a brilliant yellow ball.  

Just around the corner from the sun-like sculpture are these colorful reeds called "Desert Fiori".  The red and blue goes well together.

I will be heading to Taliesin West today to see the other half of the Chihuly in the Desert exhibit.  He split this show between the two locations.  I don't get out to Taliesin very often so I'm looking forward to this opportunity.  Fingers crossed that it won't rain on us!
Correction:  We won't be headed to Taliesin after all.  It has been closed due to the rain!  That's something that rarely happens in Arizona.  

Thursday, December 30, 2021

Freedom in the Park


Here is a sculpture that has been sitting in the Scottsdale Civic Center Park for many years.  Sadly, I never paid much attention to it.  For some reason, it called to me that last time I was there.  I wonder if it has been moved to a new location that makes it more visible.  It's called "Freedom" and was created in 1977 by Robert Winslow.  It looks so smooth and almost soft.  It begs to be touched.  

Wednesday, December 29, 2021

A Little Southwestern Architecture


Just a little southwestern architecture that caught my eye a week or so ago when I was out roaming around.  I do love all those straight lines and subtle curves. The plants just add to the whole scene.  

Tuesday, December 28, 2021

Holiday Roses


I had Christmas dinner at my friend David's house and he had these very pretty roses as the centerpiece for the table. I snapped the photo above and sent it to him the next day and then he sent me the photo he took to the left.  I love it with all those shadows around it like exclamation marks.

The beautiful roses came from David's garden.  His bushes are still blooming away.  

If you are wondering what was casting those symmetrical shadows, here it is.  The pretty crystal chandelier that hangs above the table.  

Monday, December 27, 2021

Views from the Museum


I went to the Phoenix Art Museum a week or so ago and while I was there I snapped these two photo out the windows.  This one is from the third floor where this little hidden corner exists.  The BMO building used to be the headquarters for Dial Soap years ago. The architecture of the building was supposed resemble the shape of a bar of Dial Soap.

I took this photo on the ground floor looking out at the little garden courtyard.  The museum wraps around this little area on three sides and on the fourth side at the far end is the Phoenix Little Theatre. The museum cafe is to the left where you see those umbrellas.

Sunday, December 26, 2021

Finally, a Look of Fall


Finally, I'm starting to see some trees with some fall colors.  I took this photo last weekend on a very sunny day.  On this last Friday, it rained all day so I bet many of those leaves have fallen off the tree.  I'm glad I made a circle around the block to catch this photo.  We had a pretty warm fall but the weather has cooled down to the normal winter weather for the desert.  

I have a new post on Sharon's Sojourns today.  More London Favorites.  

Saturday, December 25, 2021

Merry Christmas!!


I found this very pretty tree in the lobby of an office building.  I thought it was beautifully decorated and perfect for Christmas Day.

I wish it were as sunny today as it was when I took this a few days ago.  It's quite wintery and wet here today.  True winter weather for a change of pace in the desert!

I hope you all are having a very nice holiday!  Enjoy!

Friday, December 24, 2021

Santa is on His Way!


By the time this post is published, Santa should be well on his way delivering lots of presents to all those good girls and boys!

Hopefully he will be bringing a stack of gifts this high to your house.

These are just a couple of photos from my archives.  I took lots of photos of my ornament collection over the years.  You might remember that two (or was it three) years ago, I donated my collection for a charity auction.  Hopefully, these two are hanging on a tree somewhere right now.

Have a great Christmas Eve.

Thursday, December 23, 2021

Holiday Cheer!


I haven't been out as much during this season as I have in the past so I only have a few holiday decoration photos.  I did join some friends for dinner last Friday evening and the place we met had two pretty wreaths hanging on their doors.  

And one store I happened to enter at the beginning of the month was displaying this rather flamboyant tree.  I don't think I've ever seen a Christmas tree decorated with large pink feathers.  

I did admire this one house that has all the trees in the yard covered with white lights at the bottom with clusters of red lights hanging among the foliage.  I'm sure there are lots more pretty decorations and lights to enjoy.  I need to get out and look around.  

Wednesday, December 22, 2021

Small Treasures


I've had this little glass Christmas tree for well over 20 years and it is once again sitting out for me to enjoy.

I don't put up a tree any longer but I do have a few little holiday decorations that I scatter around the place.

These little glass trees are another of my seasonal decorations.  I've got another set of glass trees  I'll show you on another day.  

Monday, December 20, 2021

Greetings & Sightings


Last month I told you about attending the annual Canal Convergence celebration along the canal at the Scottsdale Waterfront.  I posted a photo of the fire here and two days later I posted a photo of a drone that I saw hovering above the canal.  I recently received a holiday greeting email from Scottsdale Arts and it looks to me like the photo they used in their greeting was taken by that drone.  I couldn't save the photo in the email so I just took an iPhone screen shot so I could show you the full view of all those fire-fountains.

Over the weekend I spotted this bumper sticker on a car in a parking lot.  It made me smile.  I could use a sticker like that for my car.  I am a self-avowed museum nerd.  

On another occasion, I parked next to this adorable little red scooter.  I've never been a fan of motorcycles but I think I might enjoy a little scooter like this.

This last shot I snapped right off of my TV.  I took the photo to remind me to tell someone about this show that was on PBS.  It was a production by John Mauceri called "The Nutcracker & the Mouse King".  It was narrated by Alan Cumming with the Royal Scottish National Orchestra playing Tchaikovsky's famous music.  It told the three-part story that was the Nutcracker's origin.  I never knew that the original story has the young girl saving a prince, the exact opposite of all those other childhood stories like Cinderella and Sleeping Beauty.  I have tickets to see The Nutcracker performed by the Ballet Arizona this coming Thursday.  I feel like I'll have a way better understanding of the story now.

Fluorescent Paint & Gardens


In 2015, one of the challenges for my Art Challenge Club was fluorescent paint.  Another interesting challenge.  I had to search some craft stores to find the paint and once I had it, I wasn't quite sure what I was going to do.  I ended up with this rather simplistic painting.  However it did glow in the dark, which was the goal.

In 2016, one of the challenges was "The Garden as an Autobiography".  For that challenge I printed a large number of pictures of the various flowers I've taken and I cut them out and arranged them to make a frame for a little poem I wrote.  It was a fun project and I liked the result of this one.

P.S. I think blogger has messed up the whole comment feature.  Last night I checked my site ready to delete that pesky spammer who visits us all and I found several comments that never posted to my site. One had been marked as spam but I had never seen it, the other was awaiting moderation only it shouldn't have been according to my settings.  I hope they get things fixed soon.  

Sunday, December 19, 2021

Christmas at the Garden


Christmas at the Desert Botanical Garden means Luminarias.  The garden always looks so pretty at night with all those lanterns lighting the way.

They always have a nicely decorated Christmas tree and this year they have three.  The third one is shorter and hard to make out but there were three here.

They also have music scattered all around the garden.  The carolers were near the entrance and this group called the Driftwood Quintet was playing in another location.  There were several other groups in different places.  It's always very festive at this time of year.

I have a new post on Sharon's Sojourns today.  I have my favorite London photos over the years.

Saturday, December 18, 2021

Another Art Challenge


One of the challenges for my Art Challenge Club during 2014 was "Feminine".  That made me think about a photo I had taken back in 2013 of a wonderful fountain that I found in London.  

Here is the original photo.  I had the photo enlarged to 8 by 10 and the using an exacto knife, I carefully cut away the busy background of businesses.  Then I fixed it onto an 8 by 10 canvas that I had painted blue for a blue sky effect.  I thought all those feminine figures enjoying their brass fountain was perfect for the subject.  

 I love that fountain very much so this little project has place of pride on my bookshelf.  I did a post about that fountain on my Sharon's Sojourns site.  You can see it here if you are interested.

Friday, December 17, 2021

Project Runway


In 2013, one of the challenges for my Art Challenge Group was "Project Runway".  For those of you who don't know, that refers to the TV show Project Runway.  It was a clothing design contest that operated much like The Great British Baking Show with one designer having to leave each week until one wins.  For that challenge, I created a mixed media piece with a  ball gown designed from buttons.  I sorted through my button box and picked out the white and black buttons and few red ones and fixed them to the canvas.

I enjoyed this challenge very much.  I even ended up hanging this piece in my closet.  

Thursday, December 16, 2021

Holiday Decorations


Here are two very different holiday decorations that I recently spotted.  The first is a very pretty wreath full of red berries.  I like it.

This one is a little more eclectic with ornaments hanging on a palm plant, some characters with Santa hats and what looks like an abominable snowman over there to the left.  Two very different decorating styles.

Wednesday, December 15, 2021

Two More Challenges from the Past


Here is another of my Art Challenge entries from 2011.  The challenge subject was "Highway".  I took a photo of a very desolate highway and I turned the blue sky into bricks.  I called it "Heading Toward the Fossil Fuel Brick Wall".  

For a challenge in 2012, I decided to try painting.  I will admit I'm a novice painter but I like to try.  The subject was "Beatles Songs".  I decided to paint my version of Eleanor Rigby.  I thought of her in church, thus the stained glass in the corner.  You must admit, she does look rather lonely.  

Tuesday, December 14, 2021

Chihuly Paintings & Drawings


The walls of the indoor exhibit of Chihuly in the Desert at the Desert Botanical Garden are covered with his drawings and paintings.  He uses acrylics, watercolors, ink, pencil and other mediums to create works of art on paper.  

They are all very colorful and very exuberant and energetic.  

This one looks a lot like one of his chandelier style sculptures.

They complement the glass sculptures they surround.  When you step into the room with these paintings and all that beautiful glass, it's like an explosion of color all around you.  

Monday, December 13, 2021

Hummingbird & Prickly-Pear Cactus


Talk about a bad location for photography, this mural is in a very awkward spot.  Consequently, it is partially hidden by a lot of utilitarian items that hide its beauty.   It is in an alley behind a dining and shopping complex in downtown Phoenix.

This one is painted by Jessie Perry, the same artist I featured last week.  I love all that scroll work on the left side of the mural above. It looks like it would be difficult to paint.  The cactus is on the adjacent wall. 

Taking part in Monday Murals.  

Sunday, December 12, 2021

Holiday Sightings


Signs of the season are everywhere you look right now.  I took these photos the last week of November when I was surprised to see these carolers singing at Biltmore Fashion Park.  They were probably celebrating the poinsettia tree that had just been erected.  That big red tree of poinsettia plants is something of a holiday tradition at this shopping plaza.

Do you notice the contrast between the winter clothing on the carolers and the shorts on the shopper in the background?  Up until just two days go, we've been having unusually warm weather for this time of year.

I have a new post on Sharon's Sojourns today.  I have a few random shots in Chicago.

Saturday, December 11, 2021



During the summer of 2011, my Art Challenge Group was challenged to create a work of art on the subject of "popcorn".  I had fun with this one.  I set up a little photo studio and filled four different glasses with popcorn and then photographed it.  Then I used photo editing tools to add the bubble effect over the photo.   I really loved this one.  When the Shemer Art Center learned of our group, they put together a show featuring our group and another group of artists.  I submitted this piece for the show.  

Friday, December 10, 2021

The Very First Art Challenge


A few days ago, I mentioned that I might post some of my art challenge pieces from the past.  Our little group of "artists" started way back in 2010 and the very first challenge was "No Smoking".  I remember that I struggled with the subject trying to think of something I could present.

During that time, I attended a work related conference at a local resort and while on a break, I spotted this huge ash tray outside on a patio and it was totally full of cigarette butts.  I snapped a photo and then using my photo editing software, made it into a kaleidoscope image.  It isn't something one would frame and hang on the wall, but it did the job for that very first challenge.  

Tomorrow I'll show you a challenge from 2011 that ended up in an exhibit at the Shemer Art Center.

Thursday, December 9, 2021

Exotic Vases


The indoor part of the Chihuly in the Desert exhibit also included some of the beautiful vases that the Chihuly artists have created.  On one wall was the display above featuring five vases.

On the opposite wall was this piece and the one below.

These are all fascinating creations and they were all beautifully displayed.