Saturday, November 20, 2010

On a Frosty Saturday Afternoon...

T'was a dark, cold, wintery, blustery, frozen solid Montana afternoon...

My fingers needed warming. The wool was calling me.
So I gathered roving and needles, scissors and foam mat.

And created some friends who wouldn't melt away any time soon.

Snowman Ornaments. Fun!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Naked Va Vang! Jewelry

Terra Hanks is a wild child who designs wild awesome jewelry! This is what she has to say about her art and herself:

"My Biz:
Naked Va Vang...Naked & Golden ( in Vietnamese)

"Terra Marcella Hoon Hanks is my name and I am the big (and only) boss/worker of the aforementioned business. I am eclectic and erratic but always emphatic. I have forever loved to make things with my own two hands...

"One of the first projects I remember doing is sewing Christmas presents-underwear topped off with a Santa stencil (for the males) and lavender drawer sachets( for the ladies). I think I was 8. I too, think it was for the entire extended family. I am not sure who's idea it was-whether my mom was embarking on cheap child labor or just trying to impregnate me with creativity-either way i started using the hands to do creative things and it just kept going.
"My inspirations used to live in about a two mile radius. I grew up with a twin sister. We were home-schooled on a farm-with horses+-in Iowa, so we would venture out collecting wonders of nature, daydreaming, spying on ghosts, horseback riding, pretending, and living freeeeeeeeeee. My collecting has definitely not stopped. I have piles of rocks and seeds and pods and leaves and bones and teeth and fur and feathers and even beautiful garbage. I love to make things with other found things. Always have. However, now that we have the world wide web and i have some years of travel under my belt, i have found global inspirations in the following in no apparent order....

*Sea Slugs
*Tribal Namibian Women
*Natural History
*Mineral Oddities
*Old Black & Whites
*Jacques Cousteau
*Make Believe
*Animal Patterns
*Native Americans
*Carnivorous Plants
*Coral Reefs
*My Gran
*A Certain Gypsum Shoe

"These various inspirations evolve and morph into others before my eyes. One leads to another to another to chiefly, the ocean and geology send me crazy creative.

"I am fiercely independent, so I strive to bring individuality to my jewels & osmotically instill the same within its wearer. I am also a huge fan of reusing, recycling, reconstructing, revamping, redoing, resurrecting, pretty much anyway it can be done. I think we've got enough stuff on this planet to keep us all busy for awhile-so i do what i can to change old forgotten wonders into fresh hits. I hate using capitals when I type but I am fighting that hatred, because you see, I am also a fighter. And a lover. And a dreamer. Pretty much like everybody else. Ha! I have two jobs. I am a wild land firefighter for the big bucks and when I can't do fire I do jewels...I find the balance of femininity through my jewels. And at the end of a long summer in the woods with 20 dirty boys I need it! I am in love. I am fearless of everything except rejection. I long for the beach-always. I am a good friend. I look forward to meeting you-the reader and wearer of things created by my hands. I thank you.

"You can find me at:
and naked va vang as my fan page on facebook
nakedvavang on twitter

*if you mention having read this i will hook you up with treats*"

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Monday, November 15, 2010

Heidi Zielinski - Fiber Artist

One of the first artists to include their work in the gallery was Heidi Zielinski. She found me through the TARTS, a fiber art group based in Hamilton, MT when I put out a call to artists through them. Being a fiber artist myself, I wanted to be sure and include some of the fine work of other Montana fiber artists. Click to link to her website, or her blog here.

This is what she has to say about her art:

"I am a fiber artist using fabric, beads, and thread to create art quilts that reflect the beauty and joy of nature and life. I use color, line, and texture to make abstract images that invoke feelings and memories. I am inspired by color and pattern in fabric and sometimes by interesting beads or fibers to create art that is exciting and unique.

"Although my quilts reflect a variety of techniques and styles, my most frequent composition is a collage type background using machine piecing and machine applique. My work is made up of layers beginning with the fabric, enhanced by free motion quilting, and finished off with beading or other embellishment. I use each layer to create paths that help to move the viewer's eye around the piece to discover the details I have put there. I love to combine unusual colors and textures creating interest and sometimes an unexpected result. I am inspired to use stone, bone, horn, and glass beads of many styles, as well as the traditional seed beads and bugles. The beads are a wonderful compliment to the texture and pattern of the fabric and the threadwork.

"I create depth, texture, and movement on my work with intensive free motion quilting and by using cutouts, layering, dangling beads/fringe and fabric (often leaves), and whatever else works to bring the quilt out from the wall and grab your interest. My passion for my work can be seen in every piece I create and I still marvel at the beauty of it."

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Re thinking Re organization

I'm redoing this space. Cleaning house, updating and freshening.

I'm hoping for this to be a new era in my life and as such, I'm refocusing. I will still have posts about my goat and my kids. I'll still talk about home renovations (which are going to slowly for my taste). But, my main focus is going to be my lovely shop and the artist who grace it.

Check back to find out more.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

What a Grand Opening!

Last night was the grand opening of the Gallery! We had a fabulous turn out. Lots of friends and neighbors and lots of interested passersby came to enjoy the festive atmosphere.

I was interviewed a couple of days ago for an article in the Missoulian newspaper about the Missoula Storefront Art Project. There was also a big mention about the shop. I was thrilled the article made the front page! A lot of the visitors last night said they came because of the article. So neat.

Here's a picture of me before the chaos. I look so full of energy, don't I? I don't feel or look so enthusiastic today. I'm tired from worrying myself into a frazzle yesterday. I do believe I was going non-stop from 8am until 9pm yesterday. Then Michael and I were talked into going to celebrate afterward. This is not such an easy feat anymore. The constant go-till-you-drop... well I've officially dropped! But I'll be back up tomorrow, not to worry.

Mia, a tried and true great girl and one-of-a-kind helper!
She even filed for me without being asked!

Jiah has a tremendous sense of pride in the shop. You'd think he owned the place.
Maybe someday...

I didn't get any shots of the store as it was full of life and festivities, I was too busy schmoozing. This one was taken as the last few people were walking out. That's Kim Shirley there with the luscious red hair. She was our featured artist last night for the First Friday Artwalk.

This was so much fun. I really have to thank my stars that I have such wonderful people in my life that contributed their energy to this. I know it wouldn't have been a success without them. My dearest Michael, Kathy Roth, Debby Florence, my children, and pretty much the entire city of Missoula. Thank you!

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Random Fact #6

I get totally excited when someone stops by the shop. I can barely suppress my "happy puppy" dance!