2008, I hardly knew ye

Time rushes past. As a child I remember waiting an eternity until dinnertime. Now, days, weeks and years go by faster than the blink of an eye. 2008 was a good year.

I started my art career in earnst. January I started this blog to record my artistic endeavors and made my Etsy shop debut.

February I joined the Kishwaukee Valley Art League and showed in the Egyptian Theatre show.

I started trying out linocut prints in March and did a few swaps.

April brought a commission for NIU Alumni office to create a pen and ink of Altgeld Hall.

In May we celebrated my husband's 49th birthday. The oddesy of watching a baby bird, Heini, grow up was documented on my flickr. I also came in second for the DeKalb County Corn Fest Logo Contest. The winner came from Minnesota - I still don't get it.

I was blessed to be able to rent my very first art studio downtown and will never forget my time there with it's wonderful windows and checkered floor tile. A Door County vacation in the middle of June was just what we needed. The water was still a bit cold, but our friends Robyn and Matt and Al and Elinor came up at the same time which made it an extra special time. I still remember Elinor singing while Al played the guitar under a star-filled night while we toasted marshmallows and tried to pop corn over an open fire. The J-man started working at his first job at an equestrian center. On the way back home we stopped by Andre-Kohler State Park and vowed to come back in 2009.

I turned 41 in July. With the help of my studio I was able to paint a Huskie for the Huskies On Parade . I also worked up my courage and entered the Rockford Midwestern Show. I wasn't accepted, but just entering let me know that I was gaining self-confidence in my work. Uncle John celebrated his 90th birthday with a huge picnic at his farm.

August. My baby turned 15, started shaving, got a job, and is now *officially* taller than I am. I hosted a pin party at the studio and was learning more and more about print making. My family went to the Sandwich Fair together and had taffy, elephant ears, you name it. We played our favorite game: the mouse game. J. returned to school entering into his Sophomore year.

In September
two of my prints were accepted into the F.U.E.L. Grand Small Works Show in Philadelphia. My confidence is gaining new heights! Then I was juried into and won an honorable mention in the Norris Cultural Arts Vicinity Show for my print entitled "Cave Point Park.".

October continued with many blessings when two prints were accepted into "Knock: Door County's Cultural Arts Magazine. One was for the Autumn, 2008 publication while the other will be in the Winter,2009 issue. I changed studio locations and so artwork productivity trickled down during this time.

November was set aside for preparation for my very first solo show. It was entitled "Organic Narrative" and was held at the DeKalb Area Women's Center. Many, many thanks to everyone who attended. The show was held concurrently with my best friend, Robyn Wells' show: I Couldn't Be More Me. Right after Thanksgiving, we took a family trip to the Christkindlemarket. I didn't know the spiced wine would be quite so, umm, ur... toasty.

December I set up Organic Narrative, went full throttle on Facebook, took down the show. Celebrated Christmas with my family and my family's family. It really was a wonderful year. All except the last week when my boss told all of us that we need to cut hours and cut pay in order to stay afloat. I keep saying it. I have the best job in the world and work with the kindest people in the world. Let's pray that this is a temporary setback and 2009 will bring many more blessings into our home.

Say, "Goodnight," Gracie.


Idea for a new print

Idea for a new print, originally uploaded by pejnolan.

There are three raccoons that come onto our roof almost every night. I was afraid at first that they were making their home somewhere in the roof or chimney, but they aren't. (whew!) It is just their regular route from the trees, across the powerlines, onto our maple tree, onto the roof and down the drainpipe to our back yard. Sometimes they will roll the grass up in the summertime trying to get to the grubs. They eat the raspberries and chitter at night to wake me up. When I go to the window I see them trying their hardest to get back into the tree by pulling several branches together until they flip up into the tree and scramble away. These sketches show a bit of the planned print about them.


Christmas, 2008

Herrmann Home, originally uploaded by pejnolan.

2008 was a pretty dang good year up until this last week. I've had a bit of a dry spell as far as my art goes. I haven't completed anything besides this illustration to be used as a gift. At work I've had one day removed from my schedule AND a pay cut on top of that.So, I'll be ramping up the artwork to make ends meet. First on the list is to become an Art-o-Mat artist using my prints. Second is to visit the fused glass store again and maybe learn stained glass techniques. The prints and glass would then be used to fuel my Etsy store. Spring is right around the corner, right?


Organic Narrative Preview

Organic Narrative Preview, originally uploaded by pejnolan.

The show is set. I still have to make a handbook, but everything is up and ready to go. Whew! That feels better. Now I can start on some new work.