Archive | February, 2013

Layers of Lisa Bick

19 Feb

Everyone has a story to tell. What sets the different tales we tell apart is obviously 1. by how interesting the stories are and 2. How well we are able to tell that story. When it comes to artists their stories are best told by looking at what that person creates. Each brushstroke, angle of a shot in a photograph, even a character’s costume in a movie can be major players in the role of expressing their creator’s tale.

Dolci pericolosi
Encaustic and mixed media on panel. 18″ x 18″

There is little doubt that encaustic artist Lisa Bick’s story is best told through her paintings. When you first see a piece of Lisa’s the story just starts unfolding in front of you, unraveling like a magical thread that glows as it comes to life through the senses. And if you have the pleasure of speaking with her about the piece she will tell you about every little fiber of the painting, the motion of her strokes and the efforts behind the pieces. Her face will light up, her voice becomes almost musical and passion exudes from her.

Originally from Washington D.C., Lisa now resides in Zionsville, Indiana. Lisa credits her childhood of wandering the National Gallery of Art, the Renwick, and many others in D.C. with inspiring her to become an artist. After graduating from Indiana University with a Fine Arts degree focusing on textiles, Lisa has woven her love for textiles and photography together using encaustic painting as a medium.

Lisa Bick - Helene

Helene
Encaustic and photograph on panel. 24″ x 18″

Encaustic painting is an ancient practice, and works are created by using melted beeswax with a combination of pigments to create layers and layers of wax as the “paint” in a piece.  The many layers of wax combined with other materials create a fantastic texture that allows the artists to create an enjoyable tactile as well as visual experience for the observer.

What captivated me the most about Lisa’s work was that she doesn’t hold back any details in her “story.” She intertwines her world travels, spiritual experiences and intimate moments of her life into each piece. She is not afraid to expose those personal feelings to the world, rather she encourages people to interact with them. She lays them delicately on the canvas, and allows observers to touch them, experience their textures and also tells them a magnificently beautiful yet simple inspiration behind every stroke, every piece of cloth or photograph.

VaranasiEncaustic on Panel 16" x 16"

Varanasi
Encaustic on Panel 16″ x 16″

For instance, Varanasi (image above) depicts Lisa’s inspirations from her travels to India. The poles represent the boaters in Ganges, transporting their goods up and down the river. The white cloth in the upper right is a piece of fabric from India that Lisa brought back with her. Lisa shared that she was inspired by the life, death, and filth that fills the Ganges and serves as a invaluable resource for so many. Hearing about the poignant moment that inspired this painting from Lisa herself as she traveled up the Ganges seeing women and children bathe and wash their clothes in the river has made this piece a personal favorite of mine.

Lisa Bick - Leaning Into The Afternoon

Leaning into the Afternoon (2012)
Encaustic on panel. 20″ x 16″

About Leaning into the Afternoon Lisa shares that “A part of a Pablo Neruda poem is written into the side. It says something about ‘casting my nets into your oceanic eyes.'” A former significant other of Lisa’s “had eyes the color of the Caribbean Sea. It was all about him.”

Vivaldi (2012)Encaustic, paper and oil on panel. 36" x 16"

Vivaldi (2012)
Encaustic, paper and oil on panel. 36″ x 16″

Another spectacular piece of Lisa’s is Vivaldi, with an incredibly personal influence. “My dad played Vivaldi the whole time I was growing up. He loved it. In it are scribed important dates to me….I have hung it in my house. It is an important piece to me. The cross is outlined clay tools that I use for scratching into wax and a cross symbolizes the strength needed to move on alone. Always alone.”

Lisa is currently working on a new set of paintings, mainly triptychs while preparing for a prestigious show at Encore Sotheby’s International Realty in Indianapolis. The opening reception at Sotheby’s is March 14th from 5:30 – 7:30 p.m. at 9510 North Meridian Street, Suite 200 Indianapolis, IN 46260-1315

In the meantime, you can see more of Lisa’s work at LisaBick.com, or you can interact with her on Facebook and Twitter where she provides some wonderful behind-the-scenes photos of her process quite often.

Flavor of the Week – February 14th

14 Feb

Since I want this blog to showcase the fun, quirky, and positive slice of life, I’d like to do a weekly post highlighting what I’m REALLY loving that particular week, called the Flavor of the Week. Since there simply aren’t enough hours in the day already, Flavor of the Week posts will feature a quick breakdown of a random assortment of inspirations and unique finds that have amused me recently.

Ready? Let’s Go!

What I’m loving this week:

Pilot’s B2P Be Green Retractable Gel-Ink Pens

IMG_6258

I’m a writer. No really. I am constantly writing notes, thoughts, and other randomness all over my planner, wood, and even my napkins all the time. Being as I write a LOT, I am loving these pens not just because they are made from recycled water bottles but mainly because of their smoothness. A great pen is oddly gratifying to me, and this one gets double the loving for being an excellent writing tool AND an Eco-friendly product. Snag some for yourself at Staples.com

Chiffon Bridesmaid’s Dress for Wtoo by Watters

In other realms of my world, I have a dear friend getting married this year and I am honored to get my first go at being a bridesmaid for her. We were reviewing our dress options this week, and the bride herself suggested this beautiful design from Wtoo by Watters. Frankly, I’m obsessed. The belted waist, chiffon, flowery skirt and one-shoulder top work in blissfully symphonic harmony and make this dress an instant classic. And look at all of those color options!  I sincerely mean it when I say I’d wear this dress again after her big day.

New Orleans

I am also loving (and missing) New Orleans a lot lately. Seeing all of the amazing costumes and king cake from my pals in the Big Easy celebrating Mardi Gras this week has me yearning for another visit.

IMG_0285

New Orleans has this weird vibe about it. And I like weird. I’ll admit to being creeped out by the aura of the city sometimes, but the love for life (and death, for that matter) felt throughout Nola is so remarkable and one of a kind, it’s almost difficult to put into words. Also: ‘Po Boys. Crawdads. Gumbo…..

Overall, I think New Orleans’ creative scene is bursting at the seams. Take for instance Propaganda New Orleans, Nola Fashion Week, and of course, the FOOD. The bloggers, designers, doers and thinkers that are coming out of Nola right now are simply fantastic. I personally recommend following @ChristyLorio, @JhesikaMenes, and @NicholasLandry to get a good pulse on the Nola fashion, arts, food and culture scenes. I know I am merely scratching the surface here, perhaps a more extensive post on New Orleans will come later.

I’m keeping it short and sweet for this first installment. Valentine’s day seems like a good a day as any to launch a series on things you love though, right?

And whether you have a Valentine or not, I am sending you all lots of love today, and every day.

Classically Capitalizing on 2013’s Color of the Year

11 Feb

When Pantone announced emerald as the 2013 Color of the Year there was the expected subsequent outpouring of love and admiration for the hue all over the design world. As excited as I was to hear the news, I must admit I felt a little disheartened at the prospect of my favorite color being overdone, overblown and even – *gasp* – trendy.

Since I am a early May baby (and my mother is too) emerald has always been a staple in my wardrobe. I remember receiving my first “real” piece of emerald jewelry in the first grade – a gold ring with a teeny tiny emerald on it from my godmother and beloved Aunt. I’ve been in love with my birthstone ever since, and now that emerald is getting some well deserved attention I wanted to share some thoughts on how to effortlessly incorporate the classic hue into your surroundings.

A little background: The mineral Emerald has an extensive history and has been associated with prominent figures since ancient times, so technically it’s been “So hot right now” since 4000 BC. Cleopatra adored emeralds and they have long been thought to hold mystical powers by a myriad of societies and cultures. Emeralds are thought to represent fidelity and balance, and help promote creativity. They have also been thought to prevent some health problems and aid in business matters. Emeralds themselves can actually vary in shade and depth of color – darker, richer hues are more desirable, particularly in jewelry.

For my fellow adventurists who like to get their hands dirty there are actually some emerald mines you can visit and hunt for emeralds in located in western North Carolina. That sounds like a fun weekend adventure – vacation with a potential payday included anyone?

Now focusing on the color itself, there a lot of ways you can subtly incorporate the hue into your life without a lot of effort or cost.

Plants of course are an obviously easy, cost effective, and simple way to pay homage to the color of the year. Even if you don’t have a green thumb a simple low-maintenance succulent will do the trick.

IMG_1121

Elfin Thyme is also a great choice to decorate your outdoor spaces.

IMG_3405

My first indication that emerald green was making a surge (at least in the home furnishings world) were all of the lacquered emerald finishes I saw at High Point Market in October. Lilly Pulitzer showcased an elegant emerald desk at market, while Del Ray and Associates featured a lovely antique dresser and side table at the Antique and Design Center (if you scroll down those photos, you’ll even catch a peek of me in an emerald green frock!)

Not wanting to make a large decor investment in a trend but still want a classic piece? Opt for a small home accent, such as this vintage emerald green pitcher and bowl set from Anchor Glass in Forest Green.

IMG_9914

For your wardrobe, snag a great pair of emerald bottoms (JCrew shown below) and balance them with a neutral top.

IMG_8014

You can also make Dorothy wish she’d never left the Emerald City with a gorgeous pair of emerald pumps such as these Pour La Victoire beauties.

And of course you can rarely go wrong with a set of emerald baubles. Most recently Beyonce showcased a perfect incorporation of emerald jewelry in an outfit with those spectacular gems she wore at Obama’s inauguration – and there is definitely no faking that elegance regardless of how you feel about lip-syncing.

Obviously emerald is an excellent statement hue guaranteed to catch the eye, thus it’s often best to use it in moderation (As are most things in life, right?) Pair it with other bright colors for a vivacious effect, or even with neutrals as to allow the emerald to be the center of attention – which does make sense after all as Cleopatra wasn’t known for being a wallflower, was she?

(All photos Copyright of Katie Thompson 2012 unless otherwise noted.)

Getting it Together

7 Feb

“Why don’t you start a blog?”

I’ve been asked this question numerous times, and it’s something I’ve asked myself as well. After all, I’ve been writing since I could hold a pencil. And after years of writing for others, I figured this project would finally enable for me to write for myself.

And that’s it. Nothing more. I need an outlet for my words – and a platform to spread a little love for those people, places and things that I adore.

So here we go.