Friday, March 31, 2023

Desert Colors


Late Tuesday afternoon, I was feeling the urge to get outside so I took a walk at the Desert Botanical Garden.  I'm so glad I did.  There were colorful blooms all over the garden.  Our wet winter has urged the wildflowers to make an appearance and they took up the challenge beautifully.  

There were even some early cactus blooms like these beautiful claret cup cactus blooms.  

Yellow, orange, red, blue, white and pink; color was everywhere I looked.  

Thursday, March 30, 2023

Nothing to Sing About


I wonder if Nancy Sinatra would be singing "These Boots are Made for Walkin" if she could see my latest selection of ridiculous shoes.  I should say 'expensive as well as ridiculous' shoes.  These boots that look like something Flash Gordon would wear cost a whopping $975.00.

If you are into feathers, these feathery boots and pumps might fit the bill.

I can't even imagine trying to walk in these slides.  

Trying to walk in these Delft designed slides would also prove a challenge.  

Of all these crazy looking shoes, these "weaponized" pumps take the prize.  A swift kick in these shoes could do some serious damage. 

I do love a nice pair of shoes which explains how I gather these photos.  I'm always looking for a new and stylish pair.  It's getting harder and harder to find such shoes these days. 

Wednesday, March 29, 2023

Sparkles Everywhere


I had lunch recently at AZ 88, that Scottsdale restaurant that is always having changing art inside the restaurant.  The current attraction is this cluster of "disco balls" on the ceiling. 

They happened to be hanging right above the table where I was sitting.  In fact, I'm probably reflected in these photos but, I can't find me.

 The place was also decorated with these wonderful gladiolus.  I couldn't resist a photo of them too.  

Tuesday, March 28, 2023

City Lights


After the Pink Martini show, my friends and I decided to have a drink at a rooftop bar in downtown Phoenix.  None of us had been there before and we were excited to see what it was like.  

It's not as exciting as say the New York skyline at night but it's still pleasing to the eyes.  It was kind of chilly the night we were up there so we are all looking forward to another visit when the weather warms up a bit.  

Monday, March 27, 2023

Restored Mural


Yesterday I mentioned that I had attended an event at the historic Orpheum Theatre in downtown Phoenix.  While I was there I snapped this photo of one of the restored murals inside the building.  The theater was originally built in 1929 but it changed hands many times before the city of Phoenix bought it in 1984 and began a 12-year restoration project.  For a while the theater was used as a movie theater and the owners painted the murals black because they thought they would distract from the movies.  The city hired a restoration company to remove the black paint and restore the old murals.  They are well worth saving.

Taking part in Monday Murals.  

Sunday, March 26, 2023

Pink Martini Time


Last Saturday night, I was back in downtown Phoenix to see my all time favorite band perform with the Phoenix Symphony.  When I sat down in my seat, the guy next to me asked "are you a groupie too?" I had to admit I probably was.  I've seen Pink Martini perform between 6 and 8 times.  I just love their music.

They performed in the historic old Orpheum Theatre.  Here you see lots of very happy music lovers leaving after the show.  They have such an eclectic mix of music and the songs are sung in a huge variety of languages.  Their next stop was Florida and the band leader Thomas Lauderdale wondered how this song would go over down there.  It was a great show and a wonderful evening.  

Saturday, March 25, 2023

Flowers Everywhere

I happened to drive past this house last weekend and was inspired by all those flowers to stop for a photo or two.  The front yard of this house is completely covered with those pretty yellow and orange African daisies.  

It was an impressive sight to see.  It looked like their entire yard was filled with sunshine.


Friday, March 24, 2023

Beautiful Skies


After leaving the Scottsdale Fine Art Expo, I noticed the sky was filled with lots of low-hanging clouds.  

Those clouds were so pretty, I had to find a place to pull over and take some photos.  We've had more rain and cloudy days than is normal for this time of year but it's still rare to see clouds in clusters like this.

Later that same day, I was heading into downtown Phoenix for dinner.  My friend David was driving which left me free to snap another photo of another interesting cloud formation hanging over the city.  The skies were putting on a great show that day and I'm glad I got to enjoy it. 

Thursday, March 23, 2023

More Fine Art in Scottsdale


Today I have a few pieces that appealed to me at the Scottsdale Fine Art Expo.  This first one is made from a gourd.  I've seen gourd art before but these were pretty special.  They are by Jenny Kerr.

Jane Boggs is also a sculptor who uses gourds but these are truly mixed media creations done with paint, beads and feathers.  

I thought these were so extraordinary that I photographed two of them.  They are wonderful.  I think they would be perfect in one of our many southwestern styled resorts. Or maybe over the fireplace of one of those fancy homes I toured recently.  

These last sculptures are by a husband and wife team, Terry & Marilyn Alexander. These are also creations that would fit in at many local resorts around here.  They are made from metal and glass.  

I'm glad I got to see these beautiful creations.  I also wish I had the money and space needed to acquire one or too.  

I hope these art exhibits attract decorators.  They would surely be inspired.

Wednesday, March 22, 2023

Arizona Fine Art Expo


Every year I try to attend the Celebration of Fine Arts in Scottsdale and share some photos with you.  This year I did something different.  I was recently reminded that there is another fine arts event that goes on during those winter months in Scottsdale housed in a similar configuration of white tents.  However this one is much further north in Scottsdale.  I decided to check it out.  First up is this gorgeous painting by Lexi Sundell.  I absolutely love this painting.  

Above is an array of paintings by Peter Freischlag, all of them very colorful.

To right are some paintings by Ted Blaylock.  

It's hard to tell from this photo, but this is part painting and part sculpture.  Those cowboys seem to be racing right out of the painting.  This mixed-media art is by Lori Thompson.  

The copper artistry by Ken Borchardt was another that really appealed me.  I talked to this artist about his process and he uses a type of heat reduction and oxidation to bring out the colors on a piece of copper.  They were literally stunning.  That tree on the end was my favorite.  The sculptures in the photo are by Ken as well.

Tomorrow I'll show you a few more from this show.  I will probably still go to the Celebration of Fine Art but I'm glad I went to this one too.  There is so much talent in this world of ours.  

Tuesday, March 21, 2023

What's Blooming


Here is a few of the things I saw blooming at the Desert Botanical Garden when I was there.  First is a bloom on the Texas Mountain Laurel.  

A perfectly shaped calla lily found in the butterfly pavilion.

Sea lavender was also in the pavilion and attracting lots of white butterflies.

I don't know what these are called.  If you know, let me know.  They are very pretty.

Above are some desert bluebells and to the right are some pretty, yellow desert marigolds.

Lots of pretty flowers to enjoy.  

Monday, March 20, 2023

Three Ladies


This mural was another one located in an alley so these three beautiful ladies will only be seen by those who venture into this passage.  It was painted by Ray Rivas Art who I believe works at the Just Blaze shop that sells a lot of paint for street artists.

Taking part in Monday Murals.

Sunday, March 19, 2023

The Butterflies Are Back


The last two weekends (and this one) have been very busy for me.  It's the time of year when everything is going on before it gets too hot to be outdoors.  I did manage to get to the Desert Botanical Garden and visit the butterfly pavilion which just opened up a week ago.  As usual, there were a lots of zebra longwings fluttering about.

There was also quite a few whites to be seen.

And, there were a few painted ladies enjoying the flowers.  I didn't see any of the larger butterflies.  I need to make a point of going again to see if I can catch any the next time.

I have a new post on Sharon's Sojourns today.  I am thinking about my mom and dad.

Saturday, March 18, 2023

The View From the Top


As I mentioned yesterday, we had another hill to climb to get to this last house on the tour.  This is the hill and this one had no shuttle.  We had to climb this one on foot.  And if we wanted to go further, we could even climb up the the tennis court above this hill.  You can see the fence surrounding the court in the upper left of this photo.

The view from up this high was quite stunning.  We had a full view of Camelback Mountain along with the rooftops of thousands of houses in between.  

In order to get to the pool and garden area, it required descending a little way along a set of stairs.  I decided it was enough to see this area from above.

As you can see, the house itself sits right on the mountainside giving sweeping views across Phoenix and the valley below.  

So that sums up another home and garden tour.  It seems like there is always at least one house on these tours that surprises everyone.  With this house and all its animals clinging to side of the mountain, this one was this year's surprise.

Friday, March 17, 2023

Chickens and Goats


The last house on the home and garden tour was full of surprises.  The first surprise was that we had to climb up a very steep mountain to get to it.  In fact, it was so steep, the owners ran a two-car shuttle service to take people up so they wouldn't have to climb that hill.  The car in the photo is one of the shuttles.  

When we got to the top, we were greeted by a selection of farm animals.  These two goats were putting on quite a show with a lot of head-butting action taking place.

In addition to the the playful goats, there was quite a selection of chickens wandering around.  These were not just your average farm-yard chickens, they were a colorful bunch.

The adventure did not stop with the friendly farm animals.  We had yet another hill to climb to get to the house.  Tomorrow I'll show you the view from the top.

By the way, Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Thursday, March 16, 2023

Sculptures Around the Garden


There was an abundance of art to admire at the third house on the tour.  We start with these sculpted chairs.  These look a lot like they might have belonged to the Flintstones.  None of us tried to sit in them.  

This little lady was spotted hiding among the tall plants.

This might look like an ordinary table and chair but it is actually a sculpture.

This last piece is a sculpted bicycle that is also serves as a planter for more flowering plants.  

At this house, we were offered refreshments.  I loved the plate of mini-cupcakes adorned with "sculpted" icing.  They were made to look like a variety of botanicals.  What a nice touch!  They were tasty too!