Perhaps not everyone will agree with me, but February is a pretty dull month. Sure, there's Valentine's Day, but for much of the population, it is just another day to sit around and eat copious amounts of chocolate. And there is my mother's birthday (love you mom!), but I am guessing that most of you aren't nearly as excited about that as we are. It's just a cold, dreary month, a long way from summer.
So, a few years ago, my sister came up with the idea of "Fun February." If February isn't going to be good on its own, we will have to give it a hand.
In honor of Fun February 2012, here are the super fun goings on at Emily Clarke Studio!
This Friday, February 3, 6-9pm: Art Trade!
I have a ton of art in the studio, including a lot of little pieces from my painting-a-day project from a couple of years ago. This Friday only, I am willing to make a trade for much of the art in the studio.
What can you trade, you ask? Have a book, art supply, or collectable item you think I might like? Trade it for a piece of art you like.
Provide a service like hair cutting, massages, website maintenance, advertising, etc? Bring it on.
Are you interested in one of my newest paintings? I will be happy to trade any shiny new piece for your old wrinkly money. (Although I will be willing to deal.)
(And, drop in to O-Cha tea bar next door between 8-9pm to hear my friend Alex Simpson play!)
Saturday, February 4, 12pm-4pm: Stick-people workshop
I hear people tell me all the time that they "can't even draw a stick person." Well, it is time to remedy that.
This Saturday, drop in anytime between noon and 4pm and I will be happy to teach you to draw the best stick people around. Amaze your friends! Dominate at Pictionary! You won't be sorry!
$5 gets you a pen, paper, and the best stick person drawing instruction money can buy. What a deal!
Saturday, February 11, 12pm-4pm: Paper-doll workshop
I am pretty sure that you all know that paper-dolls are my new obsession. (If not, just scroll through the last 6 months or so of blog posts.) I will be doing a mother daughter paper doll workshop with the art museum in the spring, but I am currently trying to figure out the best way to teach my technique.
On the 11th, drop in anytime between noon and 4pm, and I will be providing supplies and instructions on making your own paper-dolls. Let me know what works and what doesn't, and any questions you have. $5 gets you everything you need.
Thursday, February 16, 6:30-8:30pm: Vino and Van Gogh!
This month, I start teaching classes at Vino & Van Gogh on Augusta Rd. Bring your friends, your favorite bottle of wine, and in 2 hours I will teach you to paint a beautiful Japanese cherry blossom tree. And, the piece is done in acrylic, so you get to take it home with you that night!
I don't know why, but yesterday I got into my head to paint a row of little geisha girls. And, it turned out to be quite appropriate, because my sister and I were able to go out for some surprise sushi. I had fun researching kimono fabrics for my row of brightly colored girls.
With all the studying of 1920's fashion that I have been doing, it seems logical that I recently watched Ken Burns' documentary on Prohibition. That whole era in American history is fascinating, although I am sure that living it was a whole different thing that watching it on television. It just seems amazing to me that a freedom loving country like America would have decided to totally ban alcohol because it was seen as the root of all problems. And then, that the very people who voted for and passed the law, would completely ignore it!
One of my favorite things from the documentary was learning about Vanity Fair writer Lois Long, pen name "Lipstick." The daughter of a minister, in the 20's she became the quintessential flapper, recording her escapades in the nightclubs and speakeasys of New York in her weekly column. She was famous for her brash lifestyle and her brash writing style, stating that "Tomorrow we may die, so let's get drunk and make love." She was most definitely a new kind of woman.
People who are familiar with my art already know that I love Wonder Woman. I have painted her several times, and even turned my sister into her during one of my recent paper doll shoots.
If there is anyone I wanted to be when I was younger, it was Linda Carter from the 70's Wonder Woman tv series. (Why? I have two words for you: Invisible jet)
And, I find comic book art in itself pretty fascinating to look at, so I spent a little time recently studying the origins of Wonder Woman. She was initially created by William Moulton Marston in 1941. His reason, he said, for creating Wonder Woman was:
Not even girls want to be girls so long as our feminine archetype
lacks force, strength, and power. Not wanting to be girls, they
don't want to be tender, submissive, peace-loving as good
women are. Women's strong qualities have become despised
because of their weakness. The obvious remedy is to create a
feminine character with all the strength of Superman plus all the
Did any of you play "The Barbie Game" when you were little? It was a game that came out in the 1960's, and it was subtitled "Queen of the Prom." My grandmother had the game at her house, and it was a favorite of my sisters, my cousin, and myself. The object of the game was to become the queen of the prom, but before you got there, you had to have a boyfriend, a dress, and be president of a club. (In barbie world there are much stricter standards for attending the prom than there were at my high school. All we had to have was a ticket.)
We each had dresses that we coveted the most, boyfriends we preferred (God forbid you ended up with Poindexter!), and the drama club was the best. You had to work for allowance to pay for your dress, and the rest of the girls better not get caught at the soda shop with your boyfriend.
The game (with real life appeal for all girls!) was one of the things I remember most fondly from growing up. Sadly, the game was thrown out or given away years ago after my grandparents passed away. But a few years ago, I discovered a reproduction of the game in a toy store in downtown Greenville. I can't remember being that excited about a game before, as I happily bought it for my sister for Christmas.
The busyness of adult life keeps us from playing the Barbie Game for hours like we used to do, but my sister and I still sometimes like to get it out and play a round. If any of you are up for a cutthroat game of "Queen of the Prom," let me know and I will get the game board ready.
I was reminded yesterday that since Christmas is over I am allowed to share the pieces I did as gifts. These two paintings were for my sister and brother-in-law, and depict my two nephews. I could just paint these two little guys over and over!