Powered By Blogger

Monday, June 27, 2011


I am having fun adding my art to our local SAS collaborative altered-book trade. Helen's book is my delight. She chose the theme of pathways. Pathways could be streams of thought. Pathways could be discovery trails. There are pathways to ponder over as we make life choices.

The first pages are painted in a colorful composition featuring a streat pathway. Using the name of my studio, Iris Stream, I interpretted a type of Andy Goldworthy design. His designs that copy water flow fascinate me.

Next I made a page with a secret message on crossroads. Roads were made with painter's tape from a Jill Berry tutorial. Our path encounters crossroads. Which way will you travel next?

Tea Bag Printing

Enjoy this tutorial from Judy Perez on tea bag printing:

"Why the tea bag? Well, tea bags are a thin light weight paper that is translucent allowing one to see through them, they have a lovely tea stained patina giving them a vintage paper look and they are so thin that when it is adhered to fabric it literally disappears. It also has the benefit of being paper so media like inks and colored pencils work beautifully on them."

"One of the things that is fun to do with tea bags is print on them. The way to do this is scan an image into your computer or find some copyright free imagery on the net, and print it out on your printer. I have a black and white toner printer that I bought for this purpose, because toner ink will not bleed if it gets wet the way ink jet will."

Place a tea bag over the  printed image and tack it in place with a small piece of scotch tape on each corner.

"Place the paper with the tea bag on it in the paper tray in the correct position to print out, usually it is face down top of paper going into the printer first. To double check place an x or other mark on a blank piece of paper and print your image on it, making note of how you placed the paper in the paper tray and the direction of the image when it came out."

Here is the printed tea bag, ready to be collaged.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Data with a Bird

These paper-mache birds by Lisa Stark are fascinating. How did she visualize putting scientific data into these shapes? Sizes vary from between a robin to a sparrow.  They are made from print outs of their genetic sequences. So, she took  "hard science", tore it up and shaped it into birds suspended in flight. Hmmm...what boring data or Excel sheets could I tear up and paste into a shape in nature?

Sunday, June 19, 2011

asparagus, mint and lemon risotto | Jamie Oliver Recipes (UK)

asparagus, mint and lemon risotto Jamie Oliver Recipes (UK)
Asparagus is fresh at the Bellingham Farmer's Market. Northwest asparagus has a lovely purple tip. My sparkly clean fridge has a lemon waiting to be squeezed. Mint in the garden from a friend. All the ingredients ready for risotto.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Midnight in Paris

Sometimes you chance upon a movie that you know is going to be one of your favorites. Midnight in Paris has moved to the top of my list. I went yesterday and I LOVED IT! Quirky Woody Allen's love letter to Paris. Scott Foundas review relates,
“It’s a premise that might have seemed incredibly corny, but which in Allen’s deft hands becomes something magical, as sublimely enchanting as any Allen film since 1985’s The Purple Rose of Cairo, where the hero of an innocuous Hollywood programmer stepped down from the screen and into the life of a Depression-era New Jersey waitress…‘Nostalgia is denial,’ says one character in Midnight in Paris—a pompous intellectual hilariously played by Michael Sheen—before going on to define a condition he terms ‘Golden Age thinking’ as ‘a flaw in the romantic imagination of people who find it difficult to cope with the present’…There are those, surely, who would peg Allen as something of a nostalgia merchant himself,..Yet if Midnight in Paris is undeniably one of Allen’s most personal films, it is also one as skeptical of ‘golden age thinking’ as it is susceptible to it.”
Randy has always told me that I was born 100 years too late. It may be that I was born to love the nostalgia of the 1920s also. Here's to Nostalgia. Cheers!!!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Summer Bike Ride

One of my favorite inspirational sites is Michelle Ward's GPP Street Team. I decided to take a brave action step by participating in her latest Crusade No.52, Summer Wardrobe Colors.  I can dream of wearing summer clothes even though it didn’t warm up to 70 degrees for 249 days in this land of subdued excitement. My daily wardrobe seems to be adding a bit of summer flair. Yesterday I wore a teal sweater over several layers of tees. Just for a bit more summer warmth I added a light blue scarf.
Check out this painting, Summer Breeze. I painted it last summer. Don’t you agree, there is nothing like a breeze cooling your rosy cheeks during a summer bike ride? Bellingham offers miles and miles of off road trails. For this interpretation of a free-spirited bicycle journey the sky is Light Blue Violet. Brilliant Yellow Green fills the landscape. Raspberry, awe the joy of this color, drapes this joyous spinner. Honoring the lack of a heat wave in my area this bicyclist wears funky stripped socks in an array of summer colors. Our toes take a while to warm up!

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Rainbow Chard Recipe

Farmgirl Susan's Hot Swiss Chard Artichoke Dip Recipe
Makes about 3 cups

My version of the popular spinach artichoke dip is cooked on the stovetop instead of in the oven and uses chopped fresh Swiss chard leaves and stalks in place of frozen spinach, along with plenty of onion and garlic for extra flavor.

It tastes even better if you make it a day ahead and reheat it just before serving, either in the microwave or on the stovetop (you might need to add a splash of milk when reheating on the stove). You can use reduced-fat cream cheese and mayonnaise, as well as low-fat sour cream, if desired.

When I was creating the recipe, I used red Swiss chard for the initial batch, thinking the chopped stems would add nice bits of color. Instead I ended up with pink dip. It tasted great but looked like salmon spread, which might be confusing to eaters. If you're making it for yourself, go ahead and use whatever color chard you like.

1/4 cup olive oil
1 cup finely chopped onion (about 5 ounces)
4 to 6 cloves garlic, minced
1 bunch Swiss chard (about 12 ounces), leaves and stalks separated and both chopped into small pieces
1 14-ounce can artichoke hearts (packed in water), drained and rinsed, chopped into small pieces
4 ounces cream cheese (half of an 8-ounce package), softened
1/2 cup sour cream
1/4 cup mayonnaise
1½ cups finely grated Pecorino Romano (or parmesan) cheese (about 4 ounces)
2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
Salt and pepper to taste
Chopped scallions or chives for garnish (optional)

Heat the olive oil in a large pot. Add onion and chopped Swiss chard stalks and cook, stirring frequently, until soft, about 5 to 7 minutes. Add garlic and cook, stirring frequently, 2 minutes; do not let garlic brown.

Stir Swiss chard leaves and chopped artichoke hearts into onion mixture. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until chard is tender, about 5 minutes. (Remove lid for last few minutes of cooking if there is liquid in the pot.)

Stir cream cheese, sour cream, mayonnaise, Romano cheese and Worcestershire sauce into Swiss chard mixture and cook 10 to 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until dip is hot and thick. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Serve warm, garnished with plenty of chopped scallions or chives, if desired.

Still have some Swiss chard left? You might enjoy these recipes:
Healthy Swiss Chard Tuna Salad with Scallions & Kalamata Olives
Swiss Chard Cabbage Salad with Garbanzo Beans & Cottage Cheese
Swiss Chard & Artichoke Soup

Swiss Chard & Artichoke 'White' Pizza

© 2007 FarmgirlFare.com, the chard crazy foodie farm blog where Farmgirl Susan shares stories & photos of her crazy country life on 240 remote Missouri acres.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Joy to the World

Newly discovered artist that will teach at Artfest 2012. Check out these methods for an altered book or journal. I am thinking that I may get obsessed with her techniques. Help! I'm melting!!!

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Birdy is out of the cage

Yahoooo! Some of you may think I'm a bit behind on figuring out how all this technology works. That's what happens when I have been captive in an early childhood classroom for so long. Well...this birdy is out of the cage and singing her song. I have added Blogs I Follow, Ohhhs and Ahhhs, and Seedy to my gadgets.