Friday, January 30, 2015

Phone Photo Friday: 1.30.15

Another week bites the dust. I have been busy with teaching and preparing a couple of lectures as well as painting for an upcoming show. Eric has had a busy week installing new shows. It has been business as usual for the girls. 

While in Billings we attended an art opening, our friend Sarah Williams had a piece in the show. She is crazy talanted!

Two cute girls ran wild through the mall in Billings, MT last week. We had a short sweet visit to my home state.

While in Billings we ate breakfast at a diner called Stella's they served us monster portions of vegan sides, we were more than satiated.

Bye bye Billings. See you again soon!

Just crossing back into Wyoming on our way home.

Sunday afternoon was a comedy of errors, but the highlight was when I met up with my bestie and she gave me some great gifts including these cat butt magnets.

We have been enjoying unseasonably warm weather which means time outside!

Cordelia is still loving her ballet class! She is just in awe of the whole experience. She is also still young enough that she openly waves and relishes my positive feedback via winking and thumbs-up.

We discovered that Lucy is absolutely obsessed with popcorn. She is a total scavenger. Earlier this week she broke into the trash can and pulled out a basil stem.

Elise wanted me to teach her to draw a princess. On the left is my drawing and on the right is hers.

After ages of struggling with the worst can opener in the world I finally bought a new one. Then I proceeded to take several photos with the can opener and sent them out to Eric and Sarah. Because that is just how I roll. 

Lucy helpfully reminded us that we still need to put our suitcase away.

The girls freaked out about new bath towels. I think this is because I have never bought them new bath towels, but they were so heavily discounted at Target that they basically just gave them away.

We had rain this week! Everyone online was posting rain and temperature photos because this type of weather is fairly unusual for January in Wyoming.

This girl!

Recently Eric and I have been struck at how big Cordelia has become! How and when?

I threw a blanket on her. She stayed and took a three hour nap like this.

Atomic Betty Sprinkles only wants to snuggle. Like seriously, that is ALL that she wants to do.

My dad with the girls.

This awesome vase was another bestie gift.

Elise had her class too. These girls in their dance gear! Ahhhh, my heart!

Yoga time. Don't ask me about their clothing choices.

Hop scotch on a warm winter's day.


Well, that about does it. I hope you have had a lovely week too!

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Vegan Recipe: Roasted Asparagus Spring Salad

Asparagus just screams spring to me; even though it isn't officially here yet we are starting to get the produce in markets. I love to buy bunches of asparagus this time of year when they are cheap and affordable. This salad is absolutely delicious and takes 10 minutes to prepare!

Roasted Asparagus Salad. Rooted Vegan

For the Salad
Olive oil
Sea Salt
1 bunch of asparagus, trimmed
2-3 cups mixed baby greens
gomasio, as desired

For the Dressing
1 T white rice vinegar
Juice from one lemon
1/8 tsp sea salt
2 T grape seed oil
1/4 tsp ground ginger

Roasted Asparagus Salad. Rooted Vegan

1. Preheat your oven to 500 F. Lightly coat a cookie sheet with olive oil. Brush the asparagus with oil and sprinkle with sea salt. Place in the oven and roast for 8 minutes. (Side note: the asparagus just roasted can stand on its own as a side)
2. Let the asparagus cool to room temperature or colder if you prefer.
3. Whisk together all of the ingredients for the dressing. Toss with mixed greens to coat.
4. Lay a small mound of mixed greens with dressing. Top with some of the asparagus, 3-5 pieces. Sprinkle with gomasio or plain sesame seeds. Enjoy

Serves 4 with leftover asparagus to nibble on.

Roasted Asparagus Salad. Rooted Vegan 

 ~Maria Rose

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

For Beginning Artists

Recently I was asked for a little post of advice on pursuing an art career. Let me first say that I consider myself an emerging artist. I have in no way crossed over to the promised land of living entirely off of art sales. With that said, my husband and I are making a living solely in the arts and I am lucky enough to know a lot of very successful artists who are making their way in some form or another. So I am privy to a certain amount of first and secondhand information that could potentially be of use to an individual who is just beginning their art career. Let me just start with five points today as I could bore the universe with a lengthy art post.

Let me give you a brief background on my education. I started out my college career on an art scholarship, but abandoned it for a history degree (long story). Later I went on to get a MA in art history. I have been working as an artist this entire time. My husband has pretty much an identical story. Currently he is working as an artist and museum director/curator. I am an artist and I teach art history for two colleges, online. I also teach art and art history in a variety of other formats. So now that you know a bit about me, let me share a few things that I know about being an artist, so far.

1) Know your style.
I think this is probably the most difficult advice to give/ receive. How does one know their own style? I think that for most people it comes from the place where you go when you are just creating, not when you are trying to do something. Perhaps you will be surprised by your style. I was, when I finally accepted what I do and how I do my thang (yep, thang). Identify the medium(s) that you work in, though don't be limited by that, because we are artists yo. Then start trying to get comfortable being the artist that you are, unlike any other artist. This is also an important sub-point---don't try to emulate other artists. You can certainly borrow/trade/be informed by other artists, but always do what you do best. If you try to be like someone else you will fail because a) they will do it better b) they are already filling that hole. So don't waste your time trying to be anything you aren't, embrace the weird and uncomfortable nature of your own style---it is already there waiting for you.

M Copeland Opening
2) Get to know other artists and people in the art world.
While you shouldn't try to copy another artist's style it is so very important to get to know other creatives in your community---even if your community is small or extended or even online. Just get to know others, see what they are doing, where they are doing it, why they do what they do. You'll learn stuff. You will make connections. You will be plugged into the art scene in your community and as those people get to know you and your work they may be willing to help you or at least share would be wise to do the same. I know the art world can be competitive, but I work diligently to ignore that side of things and it has served me well. I find that when I work to help artists instead of compete with them that we all win. I truly believe that there is room for all artists.

There are also many people to know in the art world who are not artists themselves. There are the art historians, art critics, collectors, art appreciators, gallery owners, museum professionals, educators. All of these people can teach you something about your field. 

3) Educate yourself constantly.
Read about the arts. Subscribe to magazines and journals. Visit museums and galleries and studios. Learn about what is going on in your state, community, country, the world, outer space, alternate realities, etc. Read about art history so you don't sound like a dumb-dumb who thinks they invented the wheel. You can never learn enough.

Kingdom Show 2014
4) Be involved.
Be involved in your community. This is something that came to Eric and I after a visit to Missoula many years back. We were so sad to be leaving Missoula after a really happy visit and returning to our Wyoming town, because we didn't know anybody in Wyoming and we didn't have an art community. While we drove back we realized that we were in our town for an extended period of time, no plans to leave, so we should start searching for the community we wanted within our Wyoming town. Wouldn't you know it, there was already a group of people dedicated to the arts. We were able to insert ourselves into this community and add to growth as we see that we are willing and able.

When we decided to dedicate ourselves to our community we made some amazing friendships, we found patrons, we found opportunity, we found support, we found purpose. I am constantly in awe of my community and endlessly thankful for the support and acceptance that they have given to my family.

5) Create your own opportunities.
I think so many artists sit around waiting to be discovered, but that does not happen.The sooner you realize that the more successful you will be as an artist. When Eric and I were living in Denver we were unhappy with the disconnected art scene there and we wanted to have a more personal experience. So we had a salon style show at an historic home in downtown Denver. Our friend lived in one apartment in this home and she got the other residents to clear out their spaces in order to accommodate a flash gallery. It was a great success and such fun to have a more personal experience.

Since moving to Wyoming we have found so many ways to create opportunities for ourselves. Of course we pursue shows, that is the obvious, but we find other ways as well. For instance, did you know that Eric just released a couple of skate board designs? Check them out here, they are for sale and make great wall art even if you don't skate. I teach tons of classes for extra income, but more than that to build community and get to know more creatives in my area. I am able to teach these classes because I have worked hard to become involved with my art community and now when I have an idea I can propose it or people will approach me to help with their ideas.

Ultimately becoming an artist has been about working all day every day. This isn't really a career, if you are an artist you already know that, I am guessing. You don't retire from being an artist, you just eventually die. Like any passion it needs to be cultivated; contrary to popular belief passion is not something inherent to an individual, but something pursued. Also, I doubt that there is really any way to claim success as an artist as there is always a new dream on the horizon.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Break From Winter

Looks like we are enjoying a little break from winter, sorry East Coasters. The weather has been warm and pleasant. The snowy ruts in our road are nearly completely melted away. Yesterday afternoon I took the girls outside to play in the yard and it was magical. I cleaned up and did a little yard work while they stomped around in the snow and mud.




At one point the girls were beating the remaining snow drifts with sticks, almost as though they were beating winter away.


The dogs lounged in the  areas of the yard that weren't completely saturated by the snow melt.


It is that time of year where we have false starts to spring. Spring won't really arrive for some time yet, but I am itching to get back into the garden and enjoy meals on the back porch. For now I am content enough to just enjoy the gift of a random warm afternoon.


Monday, January 26, 2015

Elise's Gym Jam

Elise had her first dance class for the two year old kids, called Gym Jam. There was a sub for the first day so we don't really know what class will be like, but this week they focused on tumbling.

Elise dance class
Here is that sweet photo again as promised.

Elise was a little shy at first, but soon warmed up and was really excited to get out there and go for it, she is a brave girl.

Elise dance class

All of the mothers stayed with their children to help them keep their focus. There were about 6 kids with varying degrees of development.

Elise dance class

Elise dance class

Elise watched carefully as the teacher and any children before her tried a task and she was quick to pick things up. By the end of class she was somersaulting forwards and backwards, hopping, doing assisted head stands, walking the balance beam, and running an obstacle course. I felt a bit like a dog trainer, telling her to jump through the hoops and stuff, but she really had a blast.

Elise dance class

When Eric and Cordelia arrived near the end of class Elise really opened up, proud to show off for them. Her favorite part of the class was most definitely the balance beam. She really had remarkable balance (not from my genes) and kind of flew past the other kids who were really struggling. It was an absolutely sweet experience and I look forward to our next Thursday class.

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Sunday Quote: An Art


To make living itself an art, that is the goal.
~Henry Miller

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Glory of the West

We just took a short trip to the motherland, Montana! Eric had work in Billings and we decided to make it a family affair. We took the short drive to Billings  after Elise's dance class on Thursday.

While the roads were all perfectly clear there is still plenty of snow. Our hotel room had a view of the pool, inviting.

We checked in and freshened up a bit, meaning we shook the crumbs out of the girls' coats and I put on some lipstick. Then we headed over to the Yellowstone Art Museum (YAM) for the art event that Eric had juried several months back. We knew several of the artists featured (not the ones he had chosen/juried) and it was great fun to be a bit anonymous in a museum. With Eric's high profile job he is fairly in demand at local events. 

The next morning we grabbed some breakfast and stopped by the mall, with the indoor play area.

Then we headed to my childhood hometown in Harlowton. A small town of about a thousand it has changed very little since we left. We visited a few of my old friends and met a special little baby, daughter of my friend Robin.

Our visit was short and sweet. A few quick visits and we headed back to Billings.

We ate dinner at an Asian fusion restaurant. Then it was back to the hotel and bed for the girls. Both girls have been fantastic travelers, but they were pretty tuckered out by bedtime.

Now we are up and running, headed back to Wyoming! Don't worry, we will travel safe and sanitary.
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