Friday, June 12, 2015

The Time Has Come!


It just may happen.

This crazy idea I have been talking to you about for-what-seems-like-ever...just. may. happen.

It has come together so beautifully and has moved quickly. Serendipitous is a word that I never thought I would use in a sentence, but it feels purely serendipitous  .... the Community Art Program that we have been dreaming of, babbling about, and researching for,  JUST MAY HAPPEN!

A crazy-good, diverse, talented group of people have joined with me and are determined to make this Art Project come about. They believe in the importance of Art and know how it can change your life. They give me courage. 

A building is available in the perfect part of town, across from the railroad tracks and close to the community garden. It has plenty of room to make Art, lots of natural light, storage space...it also has a partially furnished commercial kitchen. Can you imagine what would happen if we could offer Culinary Arts along with other Arts to people?!! I know, I know, I'm getting ahead of myself....


The building is within walking distance of my home.  Toby and visit it frequently.   I peer inside the windows and whisper, "Don't let anyone else rent you. You will love us.  We are worth waiting for....we just need a bunch of money."


This is the place.
Those columns merely need to be yarn bombed
add some graffiti and plastic flamingos
and it will rock.  


Artists of all talents have said they want to help: potters, bead artists, fiber artists, painters, jewelry makers, photographers.....

The State of Georgia has stamped a paper with a seal of approval that says we are incorporated AND we have a name:





for real, this could happen.

The next step is filing for non-profit (501(c)3) status so when people donate money, the donation can be written off on taxes.  An $850 check has to be included with the paperwork when we file, plus, there will be a boatload of expenses that will happen the first year of operation...I guesstimate approximately $28,000 minimum.  oh, I just had a little bit of throw-up in my mouth...



The time has come.


Funds have to be raised.  Therefore, for the first time ever, limited edition (25) prints of the painting  "Angel Unawares'  will be offered for sale.



Angel Unawares

All profits from the sale of this print will go to the start-up of Backstreet Community Arts.  Backstreet will provide a safe, welcoming, creative space for people to express themselves through Art, especially focusing on, but not limited to, homeless, formerly homeless and low-income adults, offering them a place to participate in open Art studios and Art workshops free of charge. Backstreet will be open to everyone regardless of economic status.
  • Art is for Everyone.
  • Art leads to a better understanding of ourselves and others.
  • Art builds confidence and self respect, dignity and self worth.
  • Art connects.
  • Art helps work through emotions and hurt and anger and confusion.   
  • Art heals.
  • Art saves lives.
If you believe this, too, please consider supporting Backstreet Community Arts by purchasing a print ...you can find all the information and the story behind this painting by clicking here or on the painting above.  

And thank you for going on this adventure with us.  Soon we will have a Facebook page and website and all that fancy stuff.  I will keep you posted...


"The time has come," the Walrus said,
"To talk of many things:
Of shoes - and ships - and sealing wax -
Of cabbages - and kings -
And why the sea is boiling hot -
And whether pigs have wings."
Lewis Carroll, Through the Looking Glass




Sunday, March 22, 2015

Spirit Animals

My dear friend, the one who makes me laugh out loud and blow coffee out of my nose if I happen to read one of her emails during breakfast, just informed me she purchased a new t-shirt for her upcoming trip to Europe where she will be touring sacred cathedrals and visiting spectacular art museums.  Her new tee has this message printed on the front:



I so want one of those.

Although, really, my t-shirt probably needs to read:




Because once again I have been curled up in hiding, hibernating until the winter is over and the vernal equinox arrives, which was two days ago according to my other dear friend who teaches me great things about the natural world and makes me aware of words like 'vernal'.

I hope you have been well through the winter, dear readers.  Good things are about to happen in my town and I look forward to blogging about them and sharing the news with you.  

Happy Vernal Everything! May it be a beautiful season for you all.  



"You have no idea what's coming!"
Joe Brody
Godzilla 2014

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Happy Howl-o-ween....

...from Pablo Pupcasso!



People who try to explain pictures 
are usually barking up the wrong tree.
Pablo Picasso

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Spray It, Don't Say It!

For quite a while, I've been incorporating spray paint into my paintings, mostly just as an accent:  a row of numbers here, some backward letters there.  

I use Liquitex and Montana Gold sprays.
This is a rainbow of deliciousness right here.  

A few months ago, during one of those 'ugh! I can't get over this horrible creative block!' moments, I challenged myself to paint a quick portrait of Toby using only acrylic spray paint in hopes of awakening the sleeping muse.  The rules: use anything I could put my hands on for stencils and masks (tape, manila folders, mylar, my fingers) to create the shapes but no paintbrushes, oil sticks or any medium except spray paint.

The painting only took me 8ish hours, which in Front Door Studios time equals, like, 20 minutes (!) and YES it was a great sledge hammer for that block. I am super happy with the way it turned out.  


Pop Art Toby
30 x 40
acrylic on canvas



The sister happened to mention that Toby's portrait was her new favorite, so, for her Birthday this month, I painted a portrait of her black cat, Marley.  I am now her favorite sibling*.


Pop Art Marley
30 x 30
acrylic on canvas



I am having a blast creating these Graffiti Portraits.  With every shake of the can, my hidden badboy emerges; I imagine myself sneaking out in the night, dressed in black, a well-worn bandana holding back my locks, to tag the night train that just pulled into the station......these imaginings have NOTHING to do with the paint fumes that are accumulating in the studi.... oh look, a pink rabbit!


my street name...
influenced by my grandma name, Mimzy.


"People say graffiti is ugly, irresponsible and childish...
but that's only if it's done properly."
Banksy, Wall and Piece

*I am her ONLY sibling. 

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Rainy Day Inspiration


Last Sunday was a gray and rainy day. We pulled out the umbrella, dressed Toby in his raincoat, and walked around town snapping photos and getting some Painting Inspiration.


the husband and Toby
(Toby is in yellow)


Power and phone lines are so very interesting to me. 

These are the power lines in front of the food pantry where I hang out and are just a few blocks from our home....and now, after really studying them,  I'm pretty sure I know why the lights flicker on and off in our living room.  


First Avenue



and, this is the painting that was inspired by those interesting lines. 


First Avenue Dream II
  mixed media on canvas
10 x 20


The painting looks pretty good against the red brick walls of Bridging the Gap. 

Hanging out with a friend on the dock
of the food pantry warehouse. 

"My inspiration comes from all over....pieces are often based in reality,
 actual places, things I've held in the palm of my hand, 
and yet they are infused and layered 
with places where I've only been in my dreams.
 Colin Poole, super fantastic painter and sculptor


Sunday, July 13, 2014

Miserable Hope

An interesting thing was said to me by someone who has purchased a couple of my paintings.  

He said my Art held a "miserable hope"

I told him it was the best compliment my work has ever received... 



Miserable Hope
24 x 48
mixed media on canvas


"The miserable have no other medicine but hope."
Friedrich Nietzsche

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

time-between-times

Stephen Lawhead, the author of some of my family’s favorite books, refers to that mysterious time of day when the light is crossing into darkness as the time-between-times. The time when night has not completely fallen and day hasn't quite made its departure.  It is a magical time.  During the time-between-times, thin places occur and there is no separation between this world and the Otherworld. With a little bit of effort (and a cairn*)  you can cross through the thin places from one world into the next.  

Last year, a woman whom I did not know, stood for quite a while and silently studied my art.  She slowly turned, stared at me and said, “keep doing what you are doing….you paint from the thin places where this world meets the next world….” and then she turned and walked away.  

I didn't get the feeling that she had read Stephen Lawhead.... 


Time-Between-Times
mixed media on canvas
24in x 24in


"Do not think it impossible just because 
it has never happened."  
Friar Tuck 
(Tuck by Stephen Lawhead)


*cairn:  a word from the Scottish Gaelic meaning a man-made pile of stones marking an important spot like a landmark, a tombstone, or a place where a battle occurred. If you walk counter-clockwise around one of these at the time-between-times you could possibly slip through one of the thin places into the Otherworld.  

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Don't Drink the Paint Water  Coffee

Now, I have proof that I am not the only artist who struggles with paint water confusion!

Earlier this year.
(yes, I did drink the rest of the coffee)
(and, yes, I removed the paint brush first)


Welcome to the Art Studio, fantastic new coffee cup! 
I will try to keep you bright and shiny for as long as I can.  

If you struggle with paint water confusion, too,
you can order your very own, very helpful coffee cup,
created by artist Hallie Bateman,
by clicking here: fantastic coffee cup



"Water is the most essential element in life, 
because without water, you can't make coffee. "
I don't know who said this, 
but I think we could be very good friends. 

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Epitaph


I utter the phrase "that doesn't make any sense..." so often, my husband says he's going to have it engraved on my tombstone. 

Kimberly Ramey
R. I. P.
this doesn’t 
make any sense


It's pretty appropriate.


I finished a new piece yesterday....


Balancing Act
kimberly ramey
24 x 24
mixed media on canvas

detail of crow-man in Balancing Act


"The world today doesn't make any sense, 
so why should I paint pictures that do?"
Pablo Picasso



Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Studio Muses, part two

A few weeks ago, I posted about famous artists in history and their studio muses (Studio Muses, part one).  The post received some aMUSEing feedback, and to try to keep the fun-ball rolling, I asked several modern day artists in my circle (which is continuing to widen because of the Great and Powerful Magic of social media!) if they, too, had companions of the non-human sort.

Thank you to all the Artists who responded!  This has totally been my favorite post so far...and, of course, it is Toby's too.  

I not only wanted to have a little fun with these photos, but hoped to introduce you to some of my favorite Artists.  I know that you, Dear Readers, are all Art Supporters because this is an ART BLOG and hundreds of you tune in every month to read crazy posts about matte medium and my current favorite shade of orange.  So, please, click on the links below the photos and show these Artists some love: check out their websites, listen to their music, like their Facebook pages, follow their blogs and buy some ART.  

 Get Ready! 
Your senses are about to be assaulted with AWESOME!



Creator of fantastic and whimsical pieces of art and custom pet portraits,
 Remembrance Eston Jennings and Dolly
Her Art makes me happy.
www.estonjennings.com
Diggin' Dolly's



Chattanooga clay artist,
Denise Shropshire and Cookie
Denise makes super cool, one-of-a-kind art...
You can feel the love in each piece.
for real.
Flewtobob
shopblueskies.net



Every piece of her bold and colorful Art tells
a story and holds a little bit of magic,
Jeanne Bessette and Bodhi
(yes, this is the Artist Whisperer,
now you know what she looks like.  sorta.)
www.bessettestudios.com
www.facebook.com/bessettestudios




Creative Designer and Blogger,
 Jono Ramey and Eva
He makes tortillas from scratch, presses a mean cup of coffee
 and shaves with a single-edged blade.
You can follow his entertaining and thought provoking blog at:
 www.consideringthestone.blogspot.com



Linocut and Mixed Media Artist,
Laurel Martin and her beloved Basel
The colorful, joyful worlds that Laurel creates in her pieces
make you wish that you could step into them and stay for a while.
and she totally BUILT her OWN PRINTING PRESS !
www.cranberrycloud.com
www.facebook.com/CranberryCloudPage




Artist of too Many Things to list and owner of Hello Sunshine,
Tracey Sunshine Dumont and Scout
on a leisurely walk through the streets of the city.
Like her Facebook page for the smiles it will bring you.
www.facebook.com/traceydumont



Singer, Songwriter, and Artist,
Kat Lewis with Florence
Unique and beautiful music erupts out of this woman...
She is going to Rock the world...
www.facebook.com/KatLewismusic




Artist, Writer, and Chemist (seriously, how cool is that?!)
Robin Kalinich with Emma
Robin not only creates but also inspires and
 encourages other artists through networking and social media.
She has been a great encourager to me.
www.robinkalinich.com




I call him the coolest artist I know.
 Started as a contemporary street artist in NYC and
 is now keeping the dream alive from St. Augustine, FL,
David Hartzel with Fiona
www.davidhartzel.com
www.facebook.com/daveitdarko






the Happiest Artist in the World and owner of Farrago Studios,
 Corinne Galla with Smartypants
Corinne coaxed me into having my first solo show
and even provided the venue.
She wins the award for most difficult selfie with a pet.
https://www.facebook.com/corinne.galla



I would not be creating Art today if not for meeting this Artist
long, long ago in a town far, far away.
Artist, Teacher, and Imaginary T-shirt Designer,
Karen Fullerton with Grizzly
(and, yes, I have been a victim of that tongue)
http://weirdbirdstudio.blogspot.com

"How it is that animals understand things I do not know, 
but it is certain that they do understand.  
Perhaps there is a language which is not made of words 
and everything in the world understands it.  
Perhaps there is a soul hidden in everything and it can always speak, 
without even making a sound, 
to another soul."
Frances Hodgson Burnett, A little Princess