Tuesday, November 25, 2008

new art on Etsy!

Just added a ton of stuff to my Etsy store, originals, prints, tile prints, framed prints, cards....among them this elephant painting. It's HUGE, 30x40, oils, oil bars, and graphite. It was oh so fun to paint!

elephant listing

Also, I'm running big sale on my tile prints, buy 2 get the 3rd 50% off! That's 3 tile prints for $20! Affordable and fun for gift-giving for the animal and art lover on your list!


Sunday, November 23, 2008

Tag has been tagged!

So there's this "tag you're it" thing going on here amongst the art bloggers. And right now I'm the "it" girl, according to Kari Tirrell, who tagged me. The rules?

1. Place a link to the person that tagged you

2. List seven unusual things about yourself

3. Tag (and link to) seven other artists at the end of your post, and post on their blogs to let them know they’ve been tagged.

So, here's some stuff about me that may or may not be unusual, that's always a matter of perspective, now, isn't it?? lol

Well, at the moment I'm drinking out of a mug with no handle. It was broken off a few weeks ago as one of the cats knocked it off the counter. Why am I still drinking out of it? Not because I have a mug shortage, there are mugs in my cabinet that probably haven't seen the light of day in years. But, it's my favorite mug and I can't seem to part with it. There is a picture of a dog taking a poo on it, underneath that it says "This Coffee Tastes Like Crap". I mean, how great is that?? Ok, so, I drink tea, but, why be picky? BTW, this mug comes from a site still around, and it amuses me to this day, Dogdoo.com, and yeah, I have and wear, out in public, their t-shirt. Did I mention I like toilet humor?

I have several cats. More than 10. I have dogs too (the definite count of them is 6.), though I seem to have a special connection with felines. And yes, the cats, all of them, do know their names and answer to them, my cat sitter was even amazed at that fact. But, why not? I talk to them all day long. I wasn't allowed pets as a kid, I'm sure there's probably some psychological meaning to that (um, yeah, I'm nuts), but, so what? I've always had a connection to animals, the reason I was a vet tech for so many years, and good at it. And, the reason I paint them today. Most days, I'd much rather spend time with them than hang with my human counterparts, they are always there for me. I consider that a good thing. Nothing better, in fact, than painting in my studio, and looking around at all my furry companions hanging out here and there. It's a very zen feeling for me, a peaceable kingdom, if you will.

I'm uncomfortable being watched by people. But, for some strange reason, I have always been involved in activities that at times involve just that! I grew up playing the piano, but would not practice unless everyone left the room. Recitals were the pits, and because I played well, I often had to go last or nearly last, and it was torture to sit there waiting my turn. I loved the challenge of bodybuilding during my 20's and 30's, but it was very tough to stand on stage and be judged. If my husband hangs around watching me in my studio, I stop painting until he leaves, lol, and yet I have put my art out for the world to see. Maybe it's because I am stubborn to a fault. I don't necessarily think that's a bad thing, though my husband would probably (no, most definitely) disagree on that point. But, it's a trait that has helped me in many ways. In fact, stubborn is probably the wrong term. Determined, willful, I like those terms better. It helped me get through stage fright during my piano recitals, helped when I was a national level natural (no drugs) bodybuilder, helped me to become a good vet tech, helps me to be a better painter, helps me to get up and go running most mornings because it's good for me, and it helps me to deal with long tattoo sits. :-)

Oh, and on that subject, I have several tattoos. I have some smaller ones, but I really have a thing for sleeving my arms, my right arm is finished and just completed the outline on my left arm. Traditional japanese tattoo art, and all with meaning to me. The right arm is dedicated to my muse, the left, to my mom. And no, just because my arms will be filled, doesn't mean I'm going to get a face tattoo. So stop worrying about it. ;-) And not that there's anything wrong with face tattoos, I know people with them and they are nice folk.

I do tend to hoard art supplies. Canvas, brushes, paper. Hey, you never know when Jerry's Artarama or Dick Blick might suddenly be swallowed up by a black hole. And, I'll use all of this stuff one day. Really. Hey, fellow artists and hoarders, you know EXACTLY what I'm saying here, please explain it to my husband too while you are at it.

I'm sort of a vegetarian, but, not quite. My husband became a vegetarian 4 years ago and for the most part, for ease of shopping and cooking, I am too. However, I haven't been able to give up a few favorite things....chicken fajita quesadillas at my favorite Mexican restaurant, or turkey/coleslaw/provolone deli sandwiches. And sometimes I really crave a great big thick hamburger, or, a fat little mouse (oops, sorry, that was me channeling one of my cat's thoughts... ) Anyway, I spend a lot of time with my obligate-carnivore cats, so it's difficult to go without meat entirely.

My husband has never called me Tracey, only Tag. I had a shirt on with my initials the day we met, and he's never called me anything but Tag since that day. I know most of his side of the family, 25 years later, still thinks my name IS Tag.

So, that's a little about me, and now I'm about to tag 7 of my artist friends, and, hopefully, they will play along, and you will learn some fascinating things about them....Noelle Hunt, Manon Doyle, Carol Cooper, Valerie Jeanne, Lauren Cole Abrams, Griselda Tello, and Windi Rosson.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Cat Clump

Cat Clump
Originally uploaded by tagscats
Not happy with the chilly day here, so, it's time to use Vinny on the bottom as a heating pad.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Bee & Rose of Sharon

Bee & Rose of Sharon
Originally uploaded by tagscats
A new 10x10 oil painting on Etsy!


5x7 sleeping ink cat

5x7 sleeping ink cat
Originally uploaded by tagscats
A new ink cat painting just listed on Etsy! This one based on my sweet Alma cat.


foo dog tattoo sleeve

foo dog face
Originally uploaded by tagscats
This was a long tattoo sit. And, I had approved the design last week that Shayna had drawn up and we were going to start the outline. I was thinking it would be piece by piece, starting with the foo dog, but, Shayna was SO excited to do this piece, she had the entire arm pretty much mapped out. lol So, we started the stenciling. Amazingly, we got the foo dog stencil on in one try, which is so difficult to do wrapping something around one's arm. Then the peony under my arm, and the kanji tag, smoke, and the cherry blossoms.

Probably about 3.5 hours of continuous tattooing....but, we got the entire outline finished. I was pretty tired, and, Shayna had a blister on her thumb, lol.

So, it's a traditional foo dog, a symbol of protection. Closed mouth, which represents a female. Together with peonies, also symbols of protection. The red tag contains the kanji for "mother", as this entire sleeve is a memorial to my mom. And the cherry blossoms which also symbolize the beauty and frailty of life. The smoke curls are lighter as they will be perhaps greyish, or, we may color them. The foo dog will be black and grey shaded, with bluish eyes. The peonies will be bright blue (blue represents wisdom), cherry blossoms shades of pink. The background will be wind, also a traditional background for the foo dog, and, it fits in with the wind bars and hummingbird already on my shoulder. When you see foo dogs in pairs guarding temples, the male is typically on the right, and the female on the left. Also, foo dogs are actually depictions of lions, they are not dogs. So, I have a tiger on my right arm, a lion on my left. It's not entirely known the origin of foo dogs, some think it came from stories heard about the Buddhist temple lion guardians, others think it comes from an early Japanese Shinto religion that had a lion protector, and the early artists used dogs as models for they had no idea what lions looked like.

This feels so right, I feel like I've been waiting for this tattoo for a long time. It's for you mom.

See all the photos here...