Saturday, November 27, 2010

FESTIVAL OF TREES......ONGOING SUCCESS FOR OUR LOCAL HOSPITAL

Well, with the help of two of my wonderful cousins, I was able to get my tree decorated for the Festival of Trees. With the back trouble I'm having due to my car accident, I'm so grateful to family for the help needed.




This Year is the 20th Anniversary of Festival!
For the past 19 years, the Peterborough Festival of Trees has launched the holiday season for the citizens of Peterborough and the surrounding areas while raising valuable dollars that support health care in the community. In 2009, The Festival of Trees raised $210,000, which matched the funds raised in 2008. This is a wonderful testament to the generous and caring endeavors of the Festival supporters.
In 1990, a small group of visionaries commenced a mission to raise funds for the Peterborough Civic Hospital Foundation (now known as the Peterborough Regional Health Centre Foundation),St. Joseph's Hospital Foundation (now the Greater Peterborough Health Services Foundation),and Hospice Peterborough. The organizers researched the concept of the festival, and learned of its success in other communities throughout Canada and the United States. The rest is history.
The ambitious group of organizers successfully created a Victorian Village within the Memorial Centre during the first year and held a variety of special events to entice visitors to join in the celebrations and see the sights. The first year was a great success and the Peterborough holiday season tradition was established.
Well over 400,000 visitors from across Ontario and the United States have attended the spectacular festival and in more recent years over 250 businesses, small and large, have participated in various ways. Over the years, the layout of the 'village' has varied, themes have changed and new elements and events, as well as "pre-events" have been added to the schedule. Despite the many changes that the festival has undergone, the underlying objectives of raising funds for health have remained. The mandate for the festival is: "To undertake the organization,development, promotion and performance of an annual seasonal festival of music, performing arts, and related activities for the City of Peterborough".
To derive from the activities and promotional solicitations of the festival's donations, revenues and contributions of property for the benefit of health and care giving institutions in the City of Peterborough, generally, including Peterborough Regional Health Centre Foundation, Greater Peterborough Health Services Foundation, and Hospice Peterborough.
To distribute the revenues and income there from, to, for the benefit of, in response to, the identified needs of the health and care-giving institutions, whether capital or operating, in such manner as may be determined to the best interests of providing enhanced health care in the City of Peterborough".
The Festival Operational Executive Committee, the Council of Committee Chairs and their associated committees work year round preparing for the annual events. Over 1,300 volunteers are coordinated to fulfill the countless number of duties required to stage an event of this magnitude. Thousands of people hours are required to handle construction, underwriting,wrapping presents for the Silver Bell Shop, event planning, tree delivery and community sponsorships. The transformation of the Peterborough Memorial Centre into a magical holiday forest, and the organization of entertainments and all the special events within the festival attests to the amount of time, energy and dedication that the festival volunteers expend.
The Peterborough and area citizens deserve to be proud of the successful fundraising efforts of the Festival of Trees for the past nineteen years. This year is our 20th Anniversary; and the Festival will be held from November 23 - 28, 2010 at the Peterborough Memorial Centre. General admission times are also available from Wednesday, November 24 to Sunday, November 28.

It begins with House Tours where local decorators pick certain homes in the area and go in and decorate the people's homes with Christmas decor. There is also a terrific fashion show the following day. Then, there is a Preview Gala people can buy tickets to and those attending get first dibs on items to be sold from various people and corporations that donate the materials and the time.

This is my fourth year donating and decorating my own personal tree. The trees are various colors and the costs for the actual pre-lit trees are sponsored and paid for by various companies in our fair town. It costs a fair amount of money but I save somewhat by deciding a year ahead of time what color tree I want and then set about just before Christmas and after Christmas finding items for the following 'tree' year by getting all my items drastically reduced.

There is also a Heritage Breakfast with silent auction items and entertainment. After this event, there is still the Celebrity lunch for invited guests and people who purchase tickets. The following day is the Teddy Bear Breakfast and finally there is auction night. People purchase tickets and various and sundry items, both large and small go up for auction.



This year I asked for a black tree and decorated with whites, silvers, reds for impact. I was very pleased to have two of my cousins, Pat and Becky, who offered to help since I had almost NO range of motion to allow me to personally decorate my tree. I'm so lucky to finally live near family and the benefits that come from knowing you have both physical and mental support. Even if I say so myself, I was ecstatic at how beautiful my tree turned out. Someone else must agree as they purchased my tree outright the night of the Preview Gala. It gives me the warm fuzzies knowing it was purchased and what the money will help accomplish.

I enjoy attending the Family night and watching the little ones get so excited about the trees, the Candy Shop, the Toy Shop and then there is family entertainment from school choirs, soloist, and this year my cousin, Danny and his eight year old son Kevin sang. Danny is a songwriter, writes commercial jingles and performs at many clubs in the area. Also, on Family night, Home Depot sets up long rows of tables and provide for each small child something to make then and there and each child gets a small 'Home Depot' bib apron. This year, the kids got to make mini spice racks.



Many trees, gift baskets, decorated urns etc are selected for raffles that are held the final day of the Festival. People purchase tickets and at each item to be raffled there is a covered bin where people put their raffle tickets for the items they hope to win. Tomorrow, Sunday, all the items up for raffle will be drawn for and then the winners are phoned and a crew delivers the same day whatever raffle item a particular person won....pretty cool! I put my raffle tickets in the Crayola tree, the 5 Counties Children's Agency, the Home Depot tree, a couple of beautiful urns, the Little Caesar's Pizza tree. Each of these has many, many large ticket items promoted on their trees like $100 gift certificates, a certificate for a TV, a trip, years supply of pizzas, and so on and so on! I'd love to win the Crayola tree with all it's goodies. My grandson, Mason and my grandaughter, Maggie would sure have fun with all the goodies on that particular tree.






Great fun!........and a phenominal fundraiser for much needed items for the three agencies the money is alloted. All of this is done by volunteers. There is only one person paid year round to run the Festival. Kudos to all those who give in time, effort, money and enthusiasm.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

TWO SHOWS DOWN.........



Well, the last two weekends were the two Art Shows that each were 3 days long.
I got out of the hospital again on the Friday of the second show with some more car accident issues.
Thank goodness for my husband. The Friday leaving the hospital I got coughing fairly severely and felt something pop in my lower back. My husband had to set up the show and man the booth for me as I couldn't even stand up straight. On the Saturday, I managed to handle the booth for about two hours and once again had to head home.
The Sunday, I arrived with all intent to last most of the 11 -4 hours, but that wasn't to be either. I managed a little over an hour and home again, I went.
I've never had back trouble before in my life and have a whole new appreciation for people who live with back issues on a regular basis.
It's now been a week with this 'wonky' back and Thursday I finally had to go see my nurse practitioner for some help. She changed my medications and gave me a muscle relaxer to help with the back spasms( Flexeril) and then a strong anti-inflammatory (Toporol). They seem to be helping somewhat, but I'm by no means able to fully function. The silliest move can cause severe pain and more spasms.
Xrays have been taken as my nurse practitioner thinks there may be a slight crack in my spine and/or my pelvis...won't have answers until Monday.
I AM SUCH A LOUSY PATIENT....!!! This situation is very frustrating for me as I'm so fiercely independant. It's caused me to get behind on so many obligations, but I just can't move well enough for much of anything.........AAAAHHH!!!

The two shows were not as well attended and although I did OK financially, I didn't make nearly what I had hoped for with these two shows. Oh well, this type of thing is really a bit of a 'crap' shoot at the best of times.

Monday, I'm suppose to be decorating my tree for the 'Festival of Trees'. At this point, that would be impossible due to my back. S0, two of my cousins and my husband had promised to put the tree together for the show. I'll just sit and direct, I guess.

I have one more show on December 4th but it's just for about 8 hours... gosh, I sure hope I'm better by then!

We are hoping to go to North Carolina for Christmas to be with my oldest daughter, son-in-law and grandson. Then, the day after Christmas my youngest daughter, her husband and my grandaughter will arrive. It's so rare for all of us to be together at the same time. Gosh, I will be so upset, if I'm not well enough to go!

To my youngest daughter, Lindsay....enjoy what's left of your birthday!

Friday, November 12, 2010

OH, PIGPEN, I FEEL YOUR PAIN!

Well, once again I'm very negligent in posting to my blog.
Honestly, as the title reflects, I'm developing a true empathy for the Charlie Brown character, Pigpen. I believe he's the one who walks around with a black cloud over his head all the time and things just don't seem to go his way.
On the day of Hallowe'en, I had an appointment with a local restaurant to bring in some of my decoupage plates. The owner had called and requested I bring in some of my Christmas plates as she had a very interested buyer. She asked I be there somewhere between five and six PM.
Without going into every little detail, I never made it as a man ran a red light and hit me while I was in the intersection attempting to make a left turn. The condensed version is my car as totalled, I've received some injuries which are causing me some ongoing problems. Today,I got out of the hospital after being in for two + days. This is my third visit since the accident.
This trip it was confirmed I have a fractured rib just along the breast area and my breathing is very difficult. I had fluid building up in my lung as I wasn't taking the full deep breaths because that really caused severe pain. However, I've been told I must take the full breaths or I'll end up with pneumonia. Unfortunately, when I take the deep breaths, it causes me to cough and sends me into spasms that affect my breathing. I think it's called being between a rock and a hard place. A few weeks of this they tell me, and then I can begin some therapy.
Aside from losing a car that was a great deal and suited my lifestyle and my budget it has complicated the two biggest shows I have had scheduled for months.
Thank goodness, my husband stepped up and offered to help me. If I hadn't had his help, I would have lost all my deposits and would not have made a dime. Instead, I made money last weekend and will make money this weekend. Sales aren't like last year, nevertheless there is sales.
The plus side of this whole scenario is, according to the police officer if I'd been driving even a few kms. of speed more, I probably would be dead as he would have T-boned me and the speed at which I'd have been hit would not have been a happy ending.
The down side is, this driver was driving with a suspended licence, no insurance, probably speeding and probably ran the red light. As a result, I must pay a $500 deductible off the top of my claim. That translates into $500 less to spend on finding a new car. State Farm insurance has been wonderful to deal with and told me they will go after him for monies. If they get some, I get paid back my $500 first and they will take the rest. That may or may not happen!
I doubt for $2100.00 I'll find a car that matched the one I had or even come close. My car was a 1999 Ford Escort wagon with only 38,000 KMS when I purchased it and only had 70,000 KMS when totalled. It was in mint condition. My mechanic had asked me just a few weeks ago if I wanted to sell it....No, was my answer.
I get my settlement cheque on Monday and begin the process of finding a car, IF I feel well enough. Sigh!!!




Friday, October 29, 2010

A DREAM FULFILLED.............


Well, it's a wonderful feeling to help someone fulfill a dream! Myself and many friends and family gave my brother enough birthday money for a long time dream of his to come true. No one understands how really special this is for my brother. He may not have a lot, but he will ALWAYS give up something he might want if he feels his wife or daughter want something. He is a man with minimal needs and wants and rarely declares his own wish list.

Since he had a particular picture of a kayak posted for years in his workshop,I finally asked him about it. I realized this was a wish and hope he thought he might eventually realize. Well, the friends and family that love and respect him helped speed the process up. I say thank you to all of those special dreamakers. He received enough money to purchase the exact kayak in the picture, the kayak paddle, and a skirt for the kayak. He's just a little short to purchase the special kayak life jacket. I think his wife and daughter and son-in-law will provide that as a Christmas gift.

Our weather has been quite unseasonably warm up until today, so he's managed to go kayaking at least three times. He's ecstatic! I believe kayaking has beat out canoeing as his new favourite thing to do by himself and for himself. He has also spent time building a winter rack for the kayak.

You SO deserve this gift, Den! Enjoy it, every chance you get! Love you lots!!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

LET THE SEASONAL SHOPPING BEGIN..........!!!!


Well, over the past couple of months when I had any free time, I've been busily making my lighted glass blocks and making decoupaged glass plates. Why, you ask? Well, the first two weekends in November, I'm in two different arts and crafts shows in Peterborough. The first is called 'Hand of Man' that runs the entire weekend, the second is called 'Autumn Treasures' and also runs the entire weekend. These shows are a tremendous amount of work, but once you get there and are set up, they are actually a lot of fun. Obviously, the whole purpose is to generate income for myself and recognition is the added bonus. Trust me, my fingers are crossed for both. This will be the last year I make the blocks and do the plates. As of 2011, I intend to focus 100% on my photography. It's my absolute passion and I need to generate income and recognition. I'm spread too thin when I'm involved in all three.
Here is just a sampling of some of the pieces to be sold...hope you like what you see...even better when sold.








The third weekend in November is a local festival called 'Festival of Trees'. It's a week long series of events that raises funds for our local hospitals needs. This will be my fourth and final year in the capacity I now participate. Each year, a group of local companies funds the purchase of many, many artificial, pre-lit trees at 4 ft., 7ft. and 10 ft. heights. In some cases, other companies, social groups and individuals like myself design and go purchase decor for their particular tree out of pocket. The first year I participated, I did a four foot tree in memory of my Mom and my sister who both have passed away. The second year, I did another four foot tree to honour my grandchildren. Since their names are Mason and Maggie ( my personal little M & M's) the tree had an M & M's theme. Last year, I did an all white tree and used it to advertise my photography business. This year, I'm doing an all black tree with reds, silvers, whites and crystals. As monies have gotten SO tight on the personal front, I've decided this will be the last year I'll do a personal tree. I will, however, continue to volunteer to help in whatever capacity I might be needed.

Friday, October 15, 2010

FUNK........

AGAIN, I haven't posted in some time!!! What's up with that? Well, my title says it all. I am most definitely in a funk! There are SO many reasons why, which I can't or won't elaborate on at this time. What I do know is, I need to snap out of it! I will continue to work on it, but this time I'm struggling.

One of the bright spots for me in the past couple of weeks was being able to throw a surprise 60th birthday party for my brother. He is truly one of the few good guys on this earth and it was REALLY important to me to do this for him. There were about 45 people that were able to make it a very special night for him. As well as the overall surprise, some neighbours they had a long time ago in the Toronto area made it, our mutual friends from Ohio made it and his daughter and new son-in-law made it. My brother, Den, has always been unselfish, kind and willing to give to the best of his ability. He has rarely asked for or expected anything from anybody. I felt it was time he knew how much he is appreciated for who he is and how much people care about and for him. It worked in spades! He was very choked up by the love and kindness shown to him.








He has had a picture of a kayak posted up in his workshop for, I believe, 5 years or more and when I asked him quite some time ago what the picture meant, he said it was one of his dreams to own one some day. Well, with the generosity of so many friends and family we were able to give him his dream. He received enough money to buy the exact kayak he had in the picture, the paddle, the skirt and still has almost enough to purchase the specific life jacket needed for kayaking. He's actually had a chance to go out on the lakes near him three times so far because the weather has been so great.

I am posting a few of the party pics, but must add a disclaimer that the photos are courtesy of our friend Deb from Ohio. Thanks, Deb!
Also, below is a pic of a special treat Deb had made for a giveaway for the guests. It's a chocolate bar with a personalized wrapper of Den many moons ago! How cute, the idea, and how cute is that little boy!!




The next morning myself and our Ohio friends, Deb and Doc went to have coffee with Den and Bette as Den was about to turn the tables on Doc. He had made Doc a custom electric guitar and wanted to present it to Doc. Doc was so surprised and almost speechless with my brother's gesture and hard work!




I need to say 'Thank you' so much to all the friends and family that contributed to Den's birthday and helping out with food as well. It was a success, for sure!

Another happy event was the celebration of my grandaughter's third birthday. Unfortunately, I couldn't be in Princeton, but with the help of Skype, I got to see her open her birthday gift from us. She is just too cute for words! Happy Birthday, Mags!



I'm trying to get back to full health without a lot of success, so decided to 'shut down' for the most part until the end of the month hoping just some R & R will do the trick. I have an unbelievably busy month of November with three shows, three weekends in a row. Each show runs the entire weekend so some long hours ahead. I really hope they generate some income for me! To quote a friend of ours from Tennessee, " I'm so broke, I can't even pay attention!"

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

BLOGGING.....OFF TRACK!




Well, it's been some time once again since I posted on my blog. I'm not quite sure why I've gotten out of the rhythm, but I have. I think a lot of it has to do with the fact that I just haven't felt 100% and the other part, I believe, is struggling with the direction I want to go moving forward. It's been a crazy time with art shows scheduled for the past few weekends. All of that takes extra planning time, design time and the sheer logistics of getting things organized to take to a show. I did the Art in the Park for Artsweek of Peterborough, which ended up being a total waste of time. All day, outside, and only sold one item all day. Last weekend was kind of fun. I entered a juried art show affiliated with the All Canadian Jazz Festival in Port Hope, Ontario. It was an interesting premise for the artists. It was called the Square Foot Show. Every piece of art could measure no more than one square foot, be it photography, painting, 3 Dimensional, whatever. I did not need to be present for entire weekend. I just dropped my art off and they had people who hung all the pieces neatly lined up on display. On Sunday, when I went back to retrieve my pieces, I decided to take in some of the jazz festival and then pick up my art. I so enjoyed the jazz I heard.... some wonderful Canadian jazz musicians. For this show, there were two prizes handed out as well as the chance to sell one's art. The first was a Critics Choice award and the second was the People's Choice award. I found out I just missed out on the People's Choice award by two votes...rats! It would have been great as there was a $250.00 cash prize included. Oh well, c'est la vie! The money would have been great, but I was encouraged that I was in the running at all. The art piece that won, was an oil painting. Each time I enter or participate in these shows convinces me to stick with what I love and eventually, eventually it will pay off financially and in recognition. I chuckled to myself driving home from town today, thinking, oh my gosh, I hope I'm not one of those artists that becomes famous after they are dead! Wow, now that's some weird thinking AND that would really kind of suck!
Sunday night, one of my cousins invited us to attend a concert at Showplace, to see a group of women called 'The Marigolds' It was so great seeing these Canadian women who are singers and songwriters up close and personal in an intimate venue. Each is acclaimed in their own right, but together they make great music. Here is just a sample of their talents.......
video
An interesting bit of trivia....The name 'The Marigolds' came from the Sesame Street song 'Inchworm'. You can see more of their songs on YouTube.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

ARTISAN'S AND ARPEGGIO'S










Well, this past Saturday was the culmination of approximately five months of planning. It began with a very special woman by the name of Marg Glenn who wanted to help her church raise funds for some much needed renovations to bring the church up to present day handicap requirements. This included a chair lift to allow the disabled to get to the main church, to gut and re-do the bathrooms to make them more accessible for wheelchairs and finally to begin much needed repair to a very large stained glass window that is beginning to disintegrate.
Marg recruited myself and one other woman by the name of Laurie to help organize and brain storm for ideas. We decided we wanted it to be an art show with some class and to promote both local artists and local food providers.
With that in mind, we began recruiting local artists, local musicians, and local food suppliers with something special to offer.
The end result was twelve different artists who each did something unique. We had five different musicians who each donated an hour of their time to play while people shopped and sampled different food items. It was a 'sensory' experience in every sense of the word.
There are limitations to decorating a church hall, but we did our best. All the vendor tables were covered in linen tablecloths, we had a little bistro table area for people to sit and eat and listen to the music and there were potted mums outside the church to greet those attending and flowers dispursed around the venue. We had candles on the piano and fall coloured arrangements at the front entrance as well.
Each artist and food vendor donated something distinct to them for a basket that we sold raffle tickets and one lucky winner walked away with a lot of valuable items.
Although, it wasn't as well attended as we had hoped it was still a huge success! Many who attended stated it was one of the 'classiest' art shows they had been to ever.
Mission accomplished!

Monday, September 13, 2010

OH MY! WHERE TO BEGIN!!!




Well, I truly don't know where to begin as it's been three weeks since I posted anything on my blog. Why, you may ask? Well, I have been very busy and quite frankly I'm still dealing with my health issues. Although, I'm getting better, I'm still struggling with days it's a struggle to breathe normally. It's apparent, I need to find my own way to deal with a new lifestyle that is foreign to me. Because of the breathing problems, it takes me much longer to get things accomplished and I get tired much more quickly. The more difficult days are impossible to predict at this moment.... with no rhyme or reason as to why.
Because the time elapsed is so long, I will just highlight the main events that occured.

Let me begin where I left off and that is with the work done for my niece's wedding. The DIY wedding may save some money, but if for sure couldn't happen without a lot of hard work from the bride, the groom, parents, friends and family members. It was a very different setting for a wedding. It's called Wychwood (The Stop) now, but used to be the old transit barns for the buses and streetcars. On Saturdays, it begins with a market which does not end until 1:00 PM. Therefore, we could not begin to set everything up for the wedding until all the market vendors had left. We then had to clean the areas and begin setting tables, chairs, dishes, etc. etc. up. By the time that was accomplished, we all only had time to get back to the hotel, shower quickly, change and get back to the venue for 5:30PM. We managed to do it!
The wedding was short, and very unique, but oh so my niece, Kelly. They said short vows and then read letters to each other stating why they were taking each other as partners. The letters were then put in a wooden box (made by her Dad) along with a bottle of wine and they each took turns hammering nails in the lid to seal. The plan is not to open until their 25th wedding anniversary OR the first time they feel their relationship might be threatened. If so, they will open, re-read their letters and remind themselves why they pledged a commitment to each other.
Kelly did not where your typical wedding dress by any means...nothing too traditional for her. Her dress was made by a Toronto designer that she does sample modelling for and has done for a few years now.
The food was planned by the groom and a friend of his who owns a restaurant in Montreal. I must say, it's probably the best wedding food I've ever had and I'm not alone in that comment. Absolutely delicious! Many helped them pull this off and it was quite enjoyable.
An added bonus for me, was my grandaughter and my youngest daughter attended so got some really special time with both Lindsay and my little sweet pea, Maggie.
Sunday morning, some family members went over to Kelly and Nate's for a breakfast/brunch.




I will try to do another post tomorrow to give an update on the first of a sequence of art shows I'm doing in September. This weekend was the first one. This was Artisan's and Arpeggio's. I was part of the committee organizing this one and it was a great day...more on this tomorrow.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

MY BIRTHDAY..... MADE SO SPECIAL BY FRIENDS AND FAMILY!

It's been a very busy but wonderful week.
Friday was my 63rd birthday and my friends and family made it SO special for me.
I received many, many cards and many, many wonderful gifts. On Thursday at lunch my brother and sister-in-law took me to lunch for Thai food and it was superb! It was my first visit to this restaurant as we rarely eat out. Then, our friends from Brockville called and said they were in their motorcoach heading back to Brockville and wanted to spend the evening and overnight with us. They took us to the Elmhirst Resort for dinner. Again, wonderful food! I don't usually eat two big meals in one day!
Then Friday, I had a meeting with the planning committee for the 'Artisan's & Arpeggio' show we're holding on September 11, 2010. The girls bought me lunch at our 'Village Tea Room'. I had already told my husband I wasn't cooking on my birthday, so he said to pick a place to go out for dinner. As a member of our local Chamber of Commerce, I've had the pleasure of meeting and hearing about new restaurants that have opened in town. I picked a restaurant called 'David's' which is European Fine Dining. The decor was stunning, the food absolutely wonderful, and Mary, the owner, gave me a complimentary chocolate crepe with fresh fruit for dessert......just so enjoyable. My husband gave me an iTunes gift card.
I received some wonderful gifts. My daughter's gave me an iPod Nano, some gave me money towards my camera fund, my neighbour gave me some lovely note pads, my cousins gave me gift cards to Michaels and Staples. My friend from New Brunswick calle as well. She was just here visiting but I miss her already. I felt very spoiled and very blessed to have the friends and family who love me.
To top it all off, my grandson and my grandaughter each sang Happy Birthday to me.
Life is good!... and then some.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

2ND PRIZE.....WOW!


Well, I'm SO excited! I entered another photography show and went down today to help at the door and pick up my art at the end of the show. Once there, I found out one of the three pieces I submitted placed second. WOW, what a wonderful surprise!!! This is the very first win for me and to top it off, there was a cash prize as well, so I received $100.00 .... icing on the cake so to speak!

The judge for this show was Michael van Leur, who lives and works in Toronto. He is a judge in the Pirelli Photography Awards, as well as for other community based associations in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. He has 25 years experience in professional photography, working for some large studios and owning his own studio/professional lab for about 10 years. He has been hired by MacLeans magazine, Toronto Life magazine, Report on Business, Power, and Rough Notes to take photographs on their behalf.

I have three more shows I've entered coming up. This has given me the validation and encouragement to trust my heart and my passion. I'm not going to regret going after one of my dreams and who knows what might be ahead,

Thursday, August 12, 2010

HOW DO THEY DO THAT?.....INCREDIBLE!

This article was sent to me via an email, and I'm sure it's circulating around the world via the net. Having said that, I feel it's SO worth featuring again the amazing, amazing work of this couple. I'm in awe of the detail in their work and yet there is my curious side that wonders what is in some people's makeup that inspires this type of creativity? What makes some so creative and others not so much? Hmmmm!








Here in their own words, is some of their thoughts and story.......

Sculptures of Native American scenes made out of paper by Allen and Patty Eckman

These stunningly detailed sculptures may only be made from paper - but they are being snapped up by art fans for tens of thousands of pounds. The intricate creations depict Native American scenes and took up to 11 months to make using a specially formulated paper.
Husband and wife team Allen and Patty Eckman put paper pulp into clay moulds and pressurize it to remove the water
The hard, lightweight pieces are then removed and the couple painstakingly add detailed finishing's with a wide range of tools
They have been making the creations since 1987 at their home studio, in South Dakota, America, and have racked up a whopping £3 million selling the works of art
The pieces depict traditional scenes from Native American history of Cherokees hunting and dancing
The most expensive piece is called Prairie Edge Powwow which sold for £47,000
Allen said: "We create Indians partly because my great, great grandmother was a Cherokee and my family on both sides admire the native Americans...
...I work on the men and animals and Patty does the women and children" explains Allen
"I enjoy most doing the detail. The paper really lends itself to unlimited detail. I'm really interested in the Indians' material, physical and spiritual culture and that whole period of our nation's history I find fascinating. From the western expansion, through the Civil War and beyond is of great interest to me."
Allen explained their technique: "It should not be confused with paper Mache. The two mediums are completely different. I call what we do 'cast paper sculpture'"
..."Some of them we create are life-size and some we scale down to 1/6 life-size"
"We transform them by sculpting on top of them - creating detail with soft and hard paper we make in various thicknesses and textures.
"We have really enjoyed the development of our fine art techniques over the years and have created a process that is worth sharing. There are many artists and sculptors who we believe will enjoy this medium as much as we have."