A Moment for Art

Leaves on Green
Leaves on Green | monoprint | copyright Liz Macklin 2012

How to enjoy a moment of relaxation and  fun at noon? I spent an hour today with the staff of Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center. First we sampled a delicious assortment of salads by artist and chef Nevin Bossart. Then we experimented with printmaking.  I brought the paints and colored papers, as well as a collection  of leaves and flowers — maple, sweetgum, peony, yarrow and lavender. Part of the fun was seeing all the amazing creations. I met nurses, chaplains, interns and clinicians, and we chatted about art, color, techniques, day-to-day activities and the scrumptious food! Everyone celebrated with cake and bid farewell to a staff member who is moving overseas. The event, a monthly feature of  “Caring for the Caregivers, ” is sponsored by Lombardi’s Arts and Humanities Program under the direction of Nancy Morgan.

Sunday Snow

Smithsonian Castle
Smithsonian Castle | watercolor | copyright Liz Macklin 2012

Snow’s on its way — at least if you believe the weather report. On a snowy day several years  ago, I hopped on the subway and rode to the Smithsonian Castle. My friends and I wandered through gardens laced with frost and then toured exhibits of masks and elaborate figures made of wood, horn, beads and ceramics at the National Museum of African Art.

Just about any time, it’s easy to spend hours browsing the Smithsonian web site. If you’re feeling adventurous, don’t let the snow keep you inside. Grab mittens and a hat and take a trip to your favorite museum.

Persephone and the Pomegranate

pomegranate
Pomegranate | watercolor | copyright Liz Macklin 2011

Preparing for a funeral …

I stepped into a virtual tour of the Metropolitan Museum of Art and paused to read about a  Greek marble relief showing Persephone and Demeter. You might remember the myth as I do. Persephone is kidnapped by Hades and tricked into remaining in the underworld for several months each year. He tempts her with the divinely ripe red seeds of the pomegranate.

Wings, Woodlands and Watercolor

Korean Garden (detail) | watercolor | 3.5″ by 5.5″ | copyright Liz Macklin 2010

Sunday afternoon at the park. Enjoy the  animals — owls, hawks, tortoises, snakes. Drop by to watch and talk or bring your sketchbook and your paints.

Students from HB Woodlawn school will host activities for kids and demonstrate a variety of art techniques.

I’ll be painting, and I’ll be eager to discuss  gardens, nature drawing, book design, popups and inspiration from the far east, especially Korean kimonos and embroidery.

Stop by and say hello!

Potomac Overlook Regional Park, — Marcey Road off Military Road, Arlington, Virginia

Sunday, June 6 — 1:30 pm to 3:30 pm

Spring Festival at Potomac Overlook

Autumn at Potomac Overlook
Autumn at Potomac Overlook | watercolor | copyright Liz Macklin 2010

Live music, games, food, a juggler, community exhibits, art and the annual Taylor Elementary School maypole dance — all at Potomac Overlook Park’s spring open house! Special exhibits this year focus on energy, the environment and electric vehicles.

Sunday, May 2, 1:00 to 4:00

Here’s an autumn view from the nature center.

Radishes, Rise Up!

Radishes
Radishes | watercolor | 10 " by 11" | copyright Liz Macklin 2010

After months of neglect and three feet of February snow, my garden’s a maze of sticks, weeds and whatever else fell from the sky. A few  shoots of parsley and a bed of lemon thyme are springing back to life. Time to break out the rakes, trowel and garden gloves.

I usually plant tomatoes, peppers and squash, but maybe I should try a few new vegetables this year. Radishes? What else would be tasty? Any ideas?

I’ve found useful advice from Tony Maniezzo, food garden horticulturalist at the Botanical Garden of the University of British Columbia.

Nature Drawing and Painting

Daffodils
Daffodils | watercolor | 7" by 8" | copyright Liz Macklin 2010

It’s time to draw and paint outdoors! Join me and more than 40 other artists at the spring art festival at Fort C. F. Smith Park.

We’ll celebrate with an opening reception and exhibit on Friday, March 19th from 6 to 8 pm. Drawings, paintings, ceramics and glass will be on view all week in the historic Hendry House at 2411 N. 24th Street in Arlington.

There will be workshops, lectures and concerts — all free and open to the public. For anyone interested in sketching outdoors, Jocelyn Hunn and and I will lead  nature drawing from noon to 2 pm on Saturday, March 20th. We’ll sketch flora and fauna throughout the park using easy techniques. All ages and abilities are welcome. Children under 12 must be  accompanied by an adult.

For information about the full week of programs, see the Arlington Artists Alliance website. To register for workshops, e-mail sparkerart@yahoo.com.