Monday, June 22, 2009

To Remember

'O'er the Land of the Free'
Acrylic on Canvas by Sherie Sloane (c) 2009

I've been pondering on what to paint for the upcoming Fourth of July.  I wanted to make it simple, yet still portrays the spirit of patriotism.  

Both my husband and I came from military families.  Celebrating Independence Day is not just a day of merry-making for us, but a time to remember both our dads who served their countries.

I've been playing the Star Spangled Banner in my mind and the line "O'er the land of the free..." hits a chord in my heart.  

May this painting remind all of us to cherish the freedom we enjoy today and remember those who fought for it.

Dad, Thank You.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Shadows of Summer

Shadows of Summer
Acrylic on Canvas. Painted today.

Capturing the elusive warmth of Summer in canvas.

Everyone around is asking 'Shouldn't it be in the 90's (degrees) already at this time of the year?'.  Should be, but the weatherman said this will be the coolest and rainiest Summer in history of Chicago.  

Got to make the most of it then, or else, Indian Summer will be what's left.  Then comes the bitter chill of winter.  

I'd rather have this than those.  At least for now.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Passport to the World

This weekend, bring the family to the Chicago Children's Museum for days of creative and fun-filled events.  

Travel eleven thousand miles to the Philippines in Southeast Asia and explore the country's colorful sights, sounds and arts.

Take the kids and kids-at-heart on Sunday, June 14 from 1:00-2:00 pm for an interactive, hands-on painting workshop and demo by yours truly.  

Your Passport is waiting.  See you there!

Friday, June 12, 2009

Crafty Cooking

Chicken Pasta with Homemade Pesto

My craftiness has extended to the kitchen, and no one's complaining (thankfully).  In fact, everyone leaves the dining table smiling.  

Thanks to online recipes, I'm able to whip up meals that are healthy and tasty.  For lunch today, I made chicken pasta with homemade pesto.  Love the sound of 'home-made', reminds me of my own mom's home cooking.  

I got the basil pesto recipe from 'Simply Recipes'.  I used whole grain pasta and sauteed the chicken in olive oil with onions and bell peppers.  Then, I put about a cup and  a half of the pesto.  A little dash of salt and fresh ground black pepper and lunch is served.

Simple, fast, healthy and delicious. Oopps, gotta wipe that pesto from our little man's chin.

Bon appetit!

Thursday, June 11, 2009


A Father's Day Poem  by Sherie Sloane

Dad and our little man, watching the sunset.
One of my favorite random shot.

Because of you
I am steadfast and strong
Carrying on through the storm

Because of you
I knew right from wrong
Learning when to drift along

Because of you
I found courage in fear
Daring trepidation in tiers

Because of you
I stood up after a fall
Recognizing I never lost it all

Because of you
I triumphed after each loss
Applauding wisdom amidst the cost

Because of you
I am cherished and spirit's free
Living and loving in higher degree

Advance Happy Father's Day to all dads out there.  

I wrote this poem last year, thinking about my own Dad and all the years he stood by us through good times and tough ones.  

Dad, this is for you.  May our love reach you in heaven.  I miss you, we all do.

Feel free to copy the poem (please include author's name) and give it to the special men in your lives.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Meet the Morning Artist

Oak Park Avenue by Sherie Sloane
Watercolor on Paper, 18 x 24 inches.

Mark your calendar.

On June 27, the Vogt Visual Arts Center in Tinley Park, Illinois will have its Inaugural Juried Art Show and Sale from 10 am to 3 pm.  

Bring the family to meet local artists and tour the  beautiful Oak Park Avenue.  

I'll be there, so stop by and say hello.  See you there!

Monday, June 8, 2009

Carpenters Sew Too

Oven Mitten with Today's Broccoli and Cheddar Quiche
My first attempt at sewing.

I grew up in a home where creativity was highly encouraged.  Dad was always building something with his tools and mom sewed and made things for us.  There were no boys in the house (except for Dad), so I gravitated more on the 'tough' crafts like carpentry and painting furnitures.  It was inevitable for one of the girls to be Dad's handy assistant.  Luckily, it was me.

Some of my favorite memories was helping Dad build my (then) baby sister's nursery closet and her matching doll's closet.  Digging our first pond and crafting our vegetable garden's fences were so fun too.  Everything was built from scratch using manual tools.  While I was spending time with Dad, my other sisters were either drawing paper dolls or watching mom sew.

Big sis learned sewing quick, she was a natural.  Soon, she was making us tote bags, skirts and tops to match our dolls.  Back then, I thought sewing was difficult to learn.  Watching mom and sis pedal our old Singer sewing machine with so much ease seems to be a skill reserved for the 'crafty queens'.  That's when I decided I'd rather build, draw and doodle with paints.

An Artist's Oven Mitten.  Detail.

Fast forward to twenty years (wow, it was that long?),  I bought Mom her first electrical sewing machine for mother's day.  It's high time she retire the twenty-three year old Singer.  And it's my time to teach her how to use it.  But I haven't used one before.  

This is when technology comes handy.  We played the instructional DVD that came with it.  She was still intimidated, that the machine sat untouched for a whole week.  So, one morning I dared the (formerly) impossible task - sew.  

I needed a new mitten for baking (or should I say 'warming' up frozen stuff), perhaps that will be easy.  In carpentry, Dad would say 'Measure thrice, cut once'.  I learned that in sewing the hard way.  But aren't mistakes the best teachers?  

After five hours of often interrupted (with a little tot tugging every now and then) of cutting, pinning and sewing, I finally finished my first project. 

Just in time to pull out our baked (warmed up) quiche from Costco.

Friday, June 5, 2009

Meet Owyn

The little man exploring Owyn

This is Owyn.  Nope, he's not our boy.  But our boy loves it!  He can't take his eyes and hands of it, eversince  we got it.  

Waiting for Owyn was like waiting for the stork to bring home a baby.  We were filled with anticipation from day one.  We waited one weekend and four days, but it was all worth it.  I was excited to see how our little man will like it.

Owyn travelled more than two thousand miles from Los Angeles to Chicago.  Despite the long travel, it arrived in great shape.  It was superbly packed, cushioned with styrofoam to ensure it's comfy.  One can tell it was built and sent with much love and care.  How can it not be, it was made by a mom.   A mom who creates gorgeous mid-century children furniture from her old garage.

I love pieces that have stories behind it.  As a mom myself, I can just picture her sneaking into her garage during her kids' nap times and getting creative.   Someday when our little man asks me where we got Owyn, I'll tell him it came from a magical garage in a sunny place filled with love, made by a super mom.

Maybe I'll get lucky and hear him say, 'Just like you mom?'.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Turtle Tale and Flu

A Foot Away Too
Fine Art Photograph

Here's the story behind yesterday's Wordless Wednesday photo.

It was the third day of our much-awaited vacation in paradise.  Couldn't be more exciting, right?  That day, I tried to keep up a cheerful attitude.  Moms are great with that.  However I tried though, it was just wasn't working.  

All of us we're still recovering from the nine hour flight.  Traveling with a fifteen month old isn't a walk in the park.  Lugging a car seat, stroller, bags, suitcases, and an active toddler who wants to conquer everything all at once, is next to mission impossible.  I can hear my mom's old adage, 'That's why God made moms young.'  Oh yeah.

The irrepressible 'jet lag' was another thing.  Ever felt so tired you wish to sleep the whole day through?  The only caveat, sleep won't come even way past the nine hundred ninenty-ninth sheep you counted.  And just when you're about to really doze off, you realized it's just lunchtime.  Your body clock is still ticking the central time zone.  Trust me, your toddler will remind you it's still day time, no matter what.  He is on his own PST timezone - play specific time.

Not much too sweat, since there's Dad.  He can cover the bases while I catch a cat nap.  I wonder if cats really do sleep that short.  But flu decided to spend time with Dad.  It was the worst flu he ever had.  We decided to isolate him in the bedroom to contain the virus as much as we can.  Thank goodness for hotel housekeeping!

Always the optimist, my husband urged me to get out and spend time on the beach with our little one.   He'll get as much rest to get better quick.  Good idea.  I scooped up our little man and drove to the nearest beach.  It was sad not being with Dad that day.  I was looking forward to seeing him build a sand castle with our boy, while I lay on the beach watching them.

Why, of all days, flu will come.  I could really use extra hands, so I could relax myself.  Looking out on the horizon and feeling the cool afternoon breeze perked me up.

And just when I thought things were going astray on our vacation, God sent a turtle to cheer me up.  

A foot away from my feet.  Where's that camera?  Click!

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Birds of Paradise - New Work

The Making of a Painting
From top to bottom, left to right (please click photo to zoom):  

-  Value Study (HB pencil)
-  Color Study (colored pencils)
-  Color Sketch (watercolor pencils)
-  Color Sketch (watercolor pencils)
-  The Palette (new refined Holbein watercolors and pure sable brushes)
-  First Washes and Underpainting
-  Painting, Final Phase
-  Finished Painting

Watercolor on Canvas, 16 x 20. SOLD.

To find out more about this painting, please click title above. Interested in my work? Feel free to contact me, I'd be happy to hear from you.

Thank you for appreciating my art.

Monday, June 1, 2009

What's For Breakfast?

The Artist's Cereal Mix

We started this morning with an 'oh-so-summer' breakfast, packed with lots of flavor and nutrition.  The refreshing colors are so irresistible, I had to take a photo of it.

Want to make yours?  Here's how:

Mix the following in your favorite bowl:
- cup of homemade granola cereal (we got ours from the local French Market)
- walnuts
- raisins and/ or plums
- sliced fresh cantaloupes
- sliced melons
- lastly, pour milk (we added vanilla almond milk for added flavor)

Yum! We love the crunchiness and juiciness in every spoonful. Enjoy your breakfast!  

Let me know how you like it.

Warning:  Not for those who have 'nut' allergies.