Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Welcome to my little spot in cyberspace. This is my very first entry so if you're reading this you probably saw me at the 13th Annual Gourd Art Festival and grabbed one of my new business cards. I hope I said "Hi" to you or we chatted and swapped gourd stories. If I wasn't there you probably saw my husband, kids, or my mom, who flew out from Colorado to witness the event, although we all know it was a good excuse to see the grand kids.

This was my first time exhibiting at the Festival although I have entered the California Gourd Society's Art Competition twice. Pictured are two entries that did well in 2007. The mask below is called Frida Picasso, entered in the category of "Inspired by the Masters," and Giraffe, was placed in the "Mask" division.

I'll talk about the Gourd Festival later (like when it actually happens!). I do want to tackle two questions I frequently get asked: Why do you work with gourds? and How did you get started?

Somewhere in the mid-1990's I was an art student by day and taught English as a second language by night. The school I worked for required that I attend an inservice to enrich my teaching skills. I looked at the list of lectures and workshops and was surprised to find an art class.

I can't remember the teacher's name but I do remember her tattoos and the gourd she placed in front of me. I held it in my hand and thought how cool it looked, felt, and how the seeds sounded inside, and yes, even the smell! I was hooked and thus began my slow but steady journey into the world of gourds. Above is the first gourd I worked on at that inservice entitled, Peruvian Guy.