memory music mountains and living rooms

A Creative Life, artistic inspirations, food for thought, music in art, sketchbook, travel art and writing, travelog, travelogue, words and pictures

Sweetie and I did a short road trip to Mount St. Helens in Washington. We hiked around, saw a lot of birds. Sweetie heard the birds singing and said they were quite a musical chorus.  At the visitor’s center people “danced” about getting photos in front of the mountain. I drew this in my sketchbook using ink and watercolor:

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Sketchbook page by Sue Clancy

Then at the visitor’s center we went into the Mount. St. Helens gift shop. From past experience we’ve learned that their collection of books for sale on the topics of botany, zoology and biology is a gold mine. Several books come home with us each trip. This time was no exception. One of the titles that came home with us is “Natural History of the Pacific Northwest Mountains.” by Daniel Mathews.

On page 429 I read (about birds caching food) “Phenomenal ability to remember precise locations evolved separately in the chickadees and the jays that cache food for winter, and in many migrating species. Some of these species have nonmigratory or noncaching relatives whose powers of recall don’t amount to diddley squat.  Another kind of memory that must be worth holding on to is a male warbler’s memory of conspecific males’ songs.  As long as each singer remembers his neighbor’s song from the year before, and stays on his own territory, both are spared a fight. They remember songs from year to year as they return from Central America to reclaim their old haunts.”

That got me to thinking about the traveling troubadours of ancient times.  And from that thought I migrated (pun intended) to thinking of how, here in the Pacific Northwest, there is a “new” tradition of traveling musicians who give what is called “living room concerts” in private homes.  The home-owner hosts the musicians, putting them up for a night or two, and invites a number of family and friends to come to a concert. A certain amount of money is collected per attendee and most of that money goes to the musician.  The musician also sells their CD’s and what not during the evening.

I’m quite addicted to this ‘living room concert’ tradition. I find that even though I’m deaf I can “hear” the music better in a small intimate setting. There are also several local small independent theatres – and there’s fairly good hearing there too. My point being that the music I’ve heard since we’ve lived here in the Pacific Northwest has inspired a lot of my recent artwork. And I suspect this trend will continue.

The concept of a birds ability to remember where they put their food also made me think about the seasonal offerings at the local Pacific Northwest restaurants.  When I say “seasonal offering” I mean it. There’s a short time when a certain fruit or veg is available at the local farms so the pubs and restaurants will offer special dishes that use that fruit/veg and then when it’s gone. It’s gone.

We’ve lived here long enough now that I’m beginning to remember, for example, what pubs will offer the “fresh asparagus ‘fries’ ” during peak asparagus season. I’m also remembering which farmers market stands sell the freshest berries and apples. I love the seasonal randomness it’s like a perpetual surprise party but the ability to remember what is ripe during what season is helpful to know.

Needless to say I’ve been artistically inspired by the food. And that’ll prolly (as they say here) continue too.

There’s something about memory and food and music…. something that I just itch to make fine art about. So stay tuned. (pun intended again)

alive and sketching

A Creative Life, art techniques, artist book, artistic inspirations, books, ebook, psychogeography, sketchbook, travel art and writing, travelog, travelogue

I have an ancient Sufi saying posted on my studio wall “Stay close to anything that makes you glad to be alive”.  So when I go sketching I’m looking for things in the world that catch my eye, gives me an artistic thought or two – and yes, makes me glad to be alive.

Which dovetails nicely with the Thanksgiving season. I’m glad to be alive and to be able to be an artist – and thankful for living in the Pacific Northwest surrounded by so much natural beauty and so many artistically inspiring places, people, dogs, cats and things… food and drink too…

So I’m flirting with thoughts of publishing my sketchbook as an ebook/artist book. Here are two of the potential pages about a place I hiked called “Hamilton Mountain”.

What do you think?  To publish or not to publish. That is the question to take up after the holiday.

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Sue Clancy’s sketch on Hamilton Mountain (pen, ink and watercolor)

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Sue Clancy’s sketch of things found on Hamilton Mountain

 

sketching the Oregon Coast

A Creative Life, illustration, travel art and writing, travelog, travelogue, words and pictures

In the current August 2016 issue of Oregon Coast Magazine I have an article titled “Sketching The Coast”! Right there, in print, on page 42 it says “illustrations by Sue Clancy” (Wow!) !! On the title page of the magazine next to a big 42 it reads “An illustrator records her travel experiences to Newport in whimsical cartoons”. How fun is that for a teaser?!  But just think, my messy sketchbook, in print, in a slick glossy magazine, Oregon Coast Magazine, a gadzillion copies of which are actually available on newsstands right this minute! Blows my mind to contemplate that. Here’s a link to their website: http://www.oregoncoastmagazine.com/index.html – so you can order a copy mailed to you if you live someplace like Ohio, Pennsylvania or Timbuktu – but you’ll only see my article up close if you get an actual physical printed copy! Yep, you guessed it, I’m loving the whole “my art in print” thing!

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Sue Clancy’s illustrated article in the August 2016 issue of Oregon Coast Magazine

coffee accepted

A Creative Life, art exhibit, art gallery, artist book, books, travel art and writing, travelog, travelogue, words and pictures

Just found out that my artist book “Coffee Please?” was accepted for the upcoming Wanderlust exhibit at the 23 Sandy Gallery!! http://www.23sandy.com/  I’m excited! More info about, and pictures of, “Coffee Please?” here: https://sueclancy.com/category/artist-book/  Going to go do my happy dance now!!

side A of "Coffee Please?" by Sue Clancy - a unique handmade artist book

side A of “Coffee Please?” by Sue Clancy – a unique handmade artist book

artist book Coffee Please?

A Creative Life, art exhibit, art gallery, artist book, books, handmade books, sketchbook, travel art and writing, travelog, travelogue, visual story, words and pictures

In this previous post I was in the process of creating a one-of-a-kind artist book for the 23 Sandy Gallery. I’ve finished it now and it’s titled “Coffee Please?”  Here are pictures:

handmade box front cover for "Coffee Please?" by Sue Clancy

handmade box front cover for “Coffee Please?” by Sue Clancy

handmade box back cover for "Coffee Please?" by Sue Clancy

handmade box back cover for “Coffee Please?” by Sue Clancy

side B of "Coffee Please?" by Sue Clancy

side B of “Coffee Please?” by Sue Clancy

side A of "Coffee Please?" by Sue Clancy

side A of “Coffee Please?” by Sue Clancy

 

artist book about coffee

A Creative Life, art exhibit, art gallery, artist book, books, handmade books, sketchbook, travel art and writing, travelog, travelogue, visual story, words and pictures

Been busy creating a new one-of-a-kind artist book for the 23 Sandy Gallery in Portland Or. http://www.23sandy.com/

This book is titled “Coffee Please? A dialect guide for the United States”.  To create this book I’ve gone through all of my travel sketchbooks, kept as I traveled across the United States, noting, phonetically, the answers I got to my “Can I get some coffee please?” question.

Here is a picture of the “raw pages” in stages of production before “binding” as a book…

Pages from an artist book being created by Sue Clancy titled "Coffee Please? A dialect guide for the United States"

Pages from an artist book being created by Sue Clancy titled “Coffee Please? A dialect guide for the United States”

 

 

 

sketchbook publishing

A Creative Life, ebook, illustration, sketchbook, travel art and writing, travelog, travelogue, visual story, words and pictures

Tomorrow I’ll be installing my “Verrry Big Project” so while I’m getting ready to deliver the art I’m thinking about my next sketchbook publishing action.  I want to publish my Oregon Coast Sketchbook (some sample pages are in this post and elsewhere on my blog) – but shall I do it as a printed book? an ebook? or both?

I’ve heard that some people have enjoyed my sketchbook that I published as an ebook titled “Coffee Table Book” (link here: https://store.bookbaby.com/book/coffee-table-book) but that had recipes and fine art along with my sketchbook pages – so perhaps that made it interesting to folks?

My Oregon Coast Sketchbook is a travelogue, memoir and culture-study done in (duh!) a sketchbook form. Would you want to look at my Oregon Coast Sketchbook as a printed book or an ebook?  If it was printed only in black-and white ’cause that’s what I can afford – what would you think of that?

Obviously I’m going to be busy the next few days with the “Verry Big Project” – but I  will look forward to seeing your thoughts when I get back. And thanks in advance!

Here are some random non-sequential pages from my Oregon Coast Sketchbook:

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