Thursday, May 23, 2013

Feeding Your Artist Until YOU are Bursting With Great Ideas and Positive Thoughts! AND something funny....

This was a very fun week for me. I taught two classes for this wonderful guild and enjoyed the kindness, talent, and humor of each girl I met. Flower Power is so much fun and some girls got LOTS of flowers and butteflies and fish and other fun things done. There was talk of making hoochy blocks around the borders or small blocks and string piecing. Also the Out of the Box with Easy Box has two pieced alphabets and people talked about doing the word "bloom" or "Spring" or Garden"....nice to imagine isn't it? Happy and fun too! What a beautiful area they live in and you know, it is different then where I live, there are loads of restaurants and not chains. I LOVE that!
The two girls in front on the left were the vice presidents ( Ellen and Amy) great girls and the lady on the left came a long was as she belongs to another guild.
What a blessing to come in early and Ellen was my sweet and FUN hostess. We spent the day going to the beautiful Milwaukee Art Museum. I had driven by years ago but never had the chance to go inside. Here the wings on the top of the Museum are closing...they were open really wide when we first got there. Music plays outside and it was a beautiful day and happy adults and children all over. It was busy with happy and chatty people.
     The artwork there is quite wonderful. My two favorite exibits were impressionism and Outsider Art. Both were exceptional.  The impressionism had great colors and people and Ellen and I saw some paintings that were simple people and houses and things with bright colors and they were exquisite! Then we went to see the outsider art and though many people would think it rather crude or simple, it was wonderful in so many ways. I would so love to go to the Shelborne Museum is on my bucket list! We'll see.
     I am often surprised when people tell me they do not visit museums and art shows in their own communities. I think this is because they did not get into the habit or learn to do this when they were small or in fact in adult hood. If you are not going and treating your inner artist to treats of beauty and composition and impact, then you are missing out.
     I often talk about setting a date with our inner artist to explore and learn and
LOOK. How can you feed your artist with ideas and creativity if you don't discover what creativity is out there? When you take art classes in college the teachers often give you places to go to see things you have not seen before and then you write about what you saw.
    Ellen and I went and saw Gatsby and one of the reasons we went to see it was for the art experience. There is so much great color and textures and ideas in that movie and as Ellen pointed out, there was a ton of symbolism that if you don't SEE it, you miss half the impact. The Movie Frida is like that too and I highly recommend you see it as it is so visually appealing and your artist can use a lot of what is in that movie and in fact it is MADE for our inner artists and if you see the movie you will see what I mean.
     Reading new books, looking at a flea market , opening your eyes to new flowers and leaves etc, you notice (or should) that in fact things are actually shaped or look different in my minds than they really are.
    I hope that this week you open your eyes and your mind and feed your inner artist with good stuff. This is what we talk about in our five day story quilt classes. Feeding our artists brings out ideas and we get to take out memories and make them into great quilts! It is so much fun!
See how wide this roofline is? Give you ideas?
Here are a couple of the flower pots, isn't it great that people can start with the idea and they are all different?  I love many ideas...
While I get a chance I want to share a quilt that Tina my buddy is making about her son's at the beach when they were teens. She has great memories of Stone Harbor and is making the beach and the boys and landmarks and a big beach signs with all of their favorite places. I can tell you, this quilt will be one of the kids and her husband's favorites because it is telling of a time that is gone and remembered.
What are you remembering about your good times? Leave a lasting legacy and make a story quilt.
Don't feel creative? Buy Out of the Box and learn how and how to be a better artist....all concepts are art concepts that many quilters never learn.
If you order the book from me, you get a free pattern and a fat quarter and a Mary Lounie pin.
The colors in this quilt are wonderful. The brown sign post is on the left and the signs are going to be added along with more sea shells, a crab, a bucket etc....I love this. Plus she will add the boys names and birthdates and place of birth on there.
Below is the bottom of the quilt (sideways)
I have some other quilts that friends have sent and I will be sharing these for sure!
     On another topic, if you shop at Costco they have something called "Chicago Popcorn"- it is cheesecorn and caramel corn in the same bag and it is delicious...not diet food but something that is a great treat! Just wanted to share this with my friends.
I am on my way to North Carolina John C. Campbell Folk Art school for a story quilt class this week. Then when I get back, we have my five day retreat in Idaho and Farm Chicks and Artfest. Great fun and you can bet we will be feeding our artist and with Tina's cooking, our tummies too
And I added this a day later as I got it from a friend and it made me laugh...sad but funny too!

Love a good Catholic joke ...... (Mother Angelica)
An old nun who was living in a convent next to a
construction site noticed the coarse language of
the workers and decided to spend some time with
them to correct their ways.
She decided she would take her lunch, sit with
  the workers; and talk with them.
She put her sandwich in a brown bag and walked
over to the spot where the men were eating.
Sporting a big smile, she walked up to the group and asked:
"And do you men know Jesus Christ?"
They shook their heads and looked at each other...very confused.
One of the workers looked up into the steelworks and yelled out,
"Anybody up there know Jesus Christ?"
One of the steelworkers yelled down, "Why?"
The worker yelled back,
"Cause his mom's here with his lunch."


  1. My goodness Mary Lou you are going to be exhausted by the time our retreat in Post Falls is over. Sleep well and have people help you with your bags and quilts.

    They flower power quilts look great from your workshop. The are very inspirational.

    See you soon!

  2. What a wonderful class and so nice that you got a tour of the area and the museum. Love the surf quilt and the shorts are so fun. I just threw in a hawaiian shirt that someone gave my husband, that would be a fun print to do something fun for a summer memory.


  3. Thank you, Mary Lou, for sharing all the happy faces and flowers by the nice ladies in Milwaukee.

    Great pictures of the wings over the museum - lots of inspiration to start a rainy weekend.

  4. Going to have to make me one of those narrow flower pot panels! It is neat to see how different each one is1 Loved your Catholic joke!

  5. I say it again, Mary Lou you are so blessed to be able to do what you do and meet so many wonderful people and go so many COOL places! And all at the same time you are doing/teaching what you love.

    You ROCK!

    Kim in VA