Sunday, January 15, 2012

life was her canvas

"She was an artist and her life was her canvas".....

this unknown quote is what is in my head as I decide to end this short experiment of an art blog.

Initially, I thought setting up a seperate  art blog for my art life and art work was a great idea.
To seperate these subjects from my family blog.....Fiddlehead Report- "A day in the life of the Rikkers"
I didn't expect it to feel burdensome to do, but it is now feeling that way.  For me it just feels more natural to have everything together.....

how does one seperate life from art and art from life?   Now I see that for me that feels impossible.

If nothing else, this little experiment has me realizing that "my life is my art", it is my greatest creation...full of my little loves, marriage, love, friendship, chaos, legos on the floor, a silly french bulldog, travel, vintage finds, paintings, photography, home decor,  gardening.   This is where I want to share the good and the bad, as I stumble through motherhood, marriage and being a woman.  This is where I will share what I hold dear, what gets me all excited and what I am feeling most passionate about.  I want to hold it all in one place.   That is what feels right.   phew!

So, if you are following me here please do join me over at
Fiddlehead Report- A day in the Life of the Rikkers
that's where I'll be!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

portait complete...ahhh

So, in October 2010 I was apart of an auction fundraiser.  Long story short, a wonderful family bid and won that custom painting=portrait.  

Winter came and they didn't have a great photo reference.  So we decided to wait until Spring and I would take some new photos.   Spring came, and in May I ruptured a disk in my back.  That set me back.... big time.  The photos didn't even happen until late summer after I recovered.  Then I started the portrait.  A couple paintings later, and with help from my mentor, Deb Meyer, who generously taught me some tricks... it finally came together and I love it.  And more importantly the family does as well.

In the end it forced me to work in oil and colored pencil....   I have always prefered acrylic paints.   Well, this project has given me a new love of oil paint and use of colored pencil.  The blendablility, the creamy quality is to die for.    What was feeling incredibly frustrating and pressured painting, became a wonderful experience in the end.  I am grateful I pushed through those growing pains.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

best face of 2011

I Heart Faces - Photo Challenges, Tutorials and Tips

Gosh, it is really a challenge to choose my favorite face of 2011...

but in the end I chose this one of our sweet girl.
It was a spring day and we were outside playing.   
I had my camera in hand to capture the spring flowers, 
but then we ended up on the grass doing "airplane",
that is me lying on the ground with Tessa on top of my feet "flying".
It was a sweet was spring....and to me it was perfect.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

vintage endeavor....

I have loved finding a treasure for years.
going to garage sales  and looking for that "thing" that isn't being appreciated.
Possibly someone else's junk and giving it a new altered life.

So.....recently I had an adventure with friends "picking" and have been totally inspired to pursue my love of all things vintage.   I love finding an old piece of furniture and giving it new life with paint and a unique style. And so I am in the collecting and organizing stages of a new adventure....
"Paint & Patina"

It will be all things patinaed (is that correct?)....with patina....old and rediscovered, reinvented.
It is "green" and  the possiblities for creativity are endless!

Here are a few small finds.... creations and furniture posts to come in the future!

vintage candle holder

glass foil pretty

60's-esque clay bowl- "groovy"

I need help here from an equestrian to define these.....
cool, old leather horse straps

 not sure what they will become...but pretty sure a wine bottle would fit right in there!

beautiful glass jar with tin cap....beautiful for flowers.

love this apothecary jar with the teal paint patina

vintage (metal) t.v. trays....aka, magnetic memo board

this picture doesn't do it justice, but I used an old found bottle, 
wired and nailed it to this convex wood board I found.   
It is painted with a distress and will be beautiful hung on the wall
with a simple flower.

Many more ideas....and vintage finds to come!

Sunday, January 1, 2012


Memories- Dreams- Reflections

A collection of photos from 2011 inspired by Ashley Sisk's
  1. Me!  
  2. I Love You - picture of my hubby

3.  Still Laughing... - a moment you're still laughing about now...tell us a story.

Jack Jack climbed into bed with me while I was recovering from back surgery....and tickled time ensued!

4.  Winter Wonderland - a picture that reflects Winter

Drew at the snow tube hill

5.Birthday - share a birthday picture (your own or someone you love).

We have 2 little people that share a birthday on July 1st.

6. Friends - a picture with friends (this could be your friends or your children with their friends).

Sometimes it is fun to go into the stream with your friends in the backyard, instead of play in the snow.

7.  I Was Inspired... - could be a picture of your inspiration (person or thing), or inspired by...

Photo courtesy of Amy Locurto from the i heart faces San Antonia workshop.
I was inspired!

8.  Spring Fever - a picture that reflects Spring.

Love when my Japanese Maple blooms in spring....favorite tree ever.

9.  Travel or Vacation - a picture taken on vacation or on a recent travel experience...even if it was only a few miles away.

Hanging out in the hammock in of my favorite moments and shots.

10.  Summer Days - a picture that reflects Summer.
I love this fun shot of family friends I caught last summer!  

11. A Day In My Life - a picture of a typical day in your life.

Jack and I playing memory during sister's nap time.

12.  All Smiles - a picture that makes you smile or of smiling faces.

Jack rolling around in a gian ball and couldn't take that wonderful smile off his face!

13.  Autumn Harvest - a picture that reflects Autumn/Fall.

Smores are great anytime of year, right!?
This was a wonderful fall photo shoot with friends and the smores fit right in.

14.  Family or Home - a picture of your family or a picture that represents family/home for you.

This photo was taken in the mirror next to Tessa's rocking chair.  We were rocking everyday for long periods of time.  It really helped us complete our bond.  This feels like home....

15.  Celebrate! - a picture that reflects a celebration.

4th of July sparklers!  Tessa's first time!

16.  Let's Do It Again... - a picture of something you'd like to do again soon.

A hot air balloon landed in our neighborhood....and gave rides.   
Amazing!  What a site!

17.  I Miss You - a picture of someone or something you really miss.

When the green goes away....I really miss it, crave it, need it. please come back sooner than later.

18.  Beautiful - a picture of someone or something you find beautiful.

This is my Mom, aka Nana.  I love this photo of her.  She is beautiful in every way.

19.  Dress Up - this might be a picture from Halloween or not...but someone who is all dressed up!

It doesn't need to be Halloween to dress up at our house.
Tessa was thrilled to put this assemble together...
a tutu, Packer shirt and DJ Lance (Yo Gabba Gabba) hat.  
what a fashionista!

20.  Macro - share your favorite macro or close-up image.

21.  Holidays - a picture from the Holiday of your choice.

From our holiday that they were excited to let us tie them up in lights!

22.  My Favorite - share your favorite picture or memory from 2011.

Tessa loves to swing....and I love this shot of her.   

23.  Don't Ever Change - something you love about yourself, someone, or something that you never want to change.

When you catch your boys like this sleeping together you never want them to change.  NEVER.

24.  Just Because...So There! - share any picture(s) that you really want to share, but doesn't fit in any other category.

Bob the Bulldog says, "stop taking pictures and let me in!"
And yes, that is frozen drool.

25.  Hopes and Dreams - share what you hope to come or dream for 2012. Feel free to share an image of your choice.

I have dreams of fun, laughter, togetherness and relaxation as a family.
A wonderful year of growth and love.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

fave photo of Dec

While I have many photos I am loving from December and Christmas,
this is one that just makes me smile.
Taken on Christmas Eve day during an afternoon of fun snow tubing
at Eko Bakken in Scandia, Minnesota.
I turned around and there was my sweet Drew just sitting there on the tube taking a break.
I love the background, the tubes, and his natural presence in front of a camera.
And I love it so much I felt compelled to not edit it at all.....
sometimes I just love a great shot and want to leave it that way.

The Paper Mama

Saturday, December 17, 2011


20"x24" acrylic mixed-media painting 
with original photography image transfer 

"Promise" has been created for the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation's

I am so honored to have been asked to create a piece inspired
 by their mission to "promise" to help to eradicate pediatric AIDS.
Not only is it an amazing promise it is absolutely possible.   

A little info about "Promise":

"Promise" is a piece full of symbolism, and while I often like to leave that to interpretation, in this case I think it is important to share the specifics...

This painting is 20"x24"mixed media acrylic painting on canvas, which is highly textured much like the landscape in which we walked during AIDS Walk Africa.  The photo of the children is an image transfer of a photo I took in Swaziland for AWA of school children I met.  The photo has been dismantled and reassembled to create images of children both showing promise and hope, as well as children caught within the AIDS pandemic.  

Additionally, I have used a photo image transfer of the cellular form of the HIV virus and dispersed it throughout the painting (strips of orange color) 

symbolizing the AIDS plight the children are faced with and eradicting it.  
The flowers at the base of the painting symbolizes the children's song that they bravely sang to us during AWA 2008 at a school 
"HIV is killing our community.  We are the flowers of our community." 
 The flowers being another symbolic image of hope and promise.

In 2008, I participated in AIDS Walk Africa with EGPAF in Swaziland 
It was a calling of my soul to connect to 
mothers and children impacted by the AIDS pandemic,
 something I knew I had to do.

It was an incredibly inspiring and eye-opening journey.  
A journey that leaves you forever changed.  
You can't go to Swaziland and witness the reality of the AIDS pandemic
 (33% of the population is infected) without knowing you must do more.
"Message from Swaziland" was my response to what I witnessed. 

So to be asked to create a piece specifically for EGPAF's Promise Campaign feels like a natural extension of the 
"Message from Swaziland" series.    
I am honored and grateful to offer this piece to those who PROMISE.

This quote from Elizabeth Glaser says why we must do more so perfectly....