Lula

Over the Moon

And the good juju just keeps a coming!

Mike and Melissa @ "Night Flying"

Last night was the Opening at Antieau Gallery of Chris Roberts-Antieau’s latest exhibition: Night Flying.

Chris Roberts-Antieau's "Night Flying"
“Night Flying”

I’ve mentioned Chris’s gallery and her work several times in my blog, so you will remember that in addition to her gorgeous embroideries and appliqués being among my very most favorite artwork in New Orleans, Chris is also the mama of Noah Antieau whose gallery Red Truck is one of my very most favorite galleries in New Orleans. It’s a small world, y’all.

Melissa, Lula and Mike Chambers at Antieau Gallery

Here are some pieces from Chris’s new series:

"My Brother's Boat" by Chris Roberts-Antieau
“My Brother’s Boat”

"Albino Fawn" by Chris Roberts-Antieau
“Albino Fawn”

"The Seamstress" by Chris Roberts-Antieau
“The Seamstress”

"Deer Head" by Chris Roberts-Antieau
“Deer Head”

"Ad Lucem" by Chris Roberts-Antieau
“Ad Lucem”

Though we’ve visited the Antieau Gallery many times, the Opening last night was the first time that Chris herself was there at the same time that we were. I was over the moon, and a little bit star-struck to be able to actually meet her and talk with her about her work, and my work — I gave her a copy of my Tarpestry book which she seemed to like very much.

Chris Roberts-Antieau, Melissa "Sasi" Chambers and Lula

Of course it never hurts to have Lula “Ice Breaker” Chambers with me on these adventures!

"When My Dog Was Here" by Chris Roberts-Antieau
“When My Dog Was Here”

And Another Week Down…

Time flies. Even when you’re not “having fun.” Which is not to say we are NOT having fun, we are, but we are also just living “normal” life, which believe it or not is about work, and laundry, and “making groceries,” even in New Orleans where your work schedule may vary.

Melissa Chambers by the Daigle Grocery hours sign

I do love having the luxury of two months here though because we don’t feel like we’re missing out on anything when we have days like Friday which we spent keeping cosy and dry in our little hideaway.

image

The day before the deluge I’d taken the ferry across the Mississippi to the foot of canal:

Riding the ferry to the foot of canal

and hung out with Joy — having “True Blood” juice at the Canal Street Bistro:

True Blood juice at Canal St. Bistro

and coffee at Monkey Monkey Coffee & Tea.

Painting at Monkey Monkey Coffee & Tea in New Orleans

The sun came out again for the weekend, just in time for First Saturday. First Saturdays in New Orleans are like First Thursdays in Boise, with art walks in all the gallery districts and many openings of new exhibitions. (Well, Boise X 1,000.)

We spent our evening in the Warehouse District on Julia St., and as the storm of synchronicity which keeps raining down on me would have it, Karen Bubb and Rachel Reichart (of Boise City Department of Arts & History fame) were in town too. So we visited the galleries together.

Karen Bubb and Melissa "Sasi" Chambers together in New Orleans

Here’s a little of what we saw at the Arthur Roger Gallery:

Viewing art at Arthur Roger Gallery

Mike viewing a Chihuly @ Arthur Roger

Art at Arthur Roger

But my favorites were the amazing embroidered portraits “Friends & Neighbors” by Gina Phillips at the Jonathan Ferrara Gallery:

Melissa Chambers talking to model for embroidered artwork behind her

Artwork and model at Jonathan Ferrara gallery

Portrait model at <a href=

It would seem that little dogs showing up with their people at art galleries and openings, and even in the artwork itself is the new thang round here.

Lula?

Are you ready for your close-up?

Lula, ready for her close-up

Walking the Talk

As soon as I think I’ve gotten things under control — my To-Due list is nearly all checked off, it looks like there might actually be an open day on my calendar to work on something just because I feel like it, this always seems to happen….

image

I guess that’s the price we pay for being alive. I don’t really want to cross the last thing off that To-Due list — after all it sometimes feels like it’s the only thing that keeps the Walkers at bay. Gotta just keep on, keepin’ on!

Speaking of Walkers, this past Saturday was See Spot Walk. (Sorry, couldn’t resist.)

image

It was a little surreal, and a real treat, to see so many people wearing the t-shirt with my design out walking their best friends to help raise money so other people can find and adopt their best friends in the future.

Here are just a few of them…

image

image

image

image

Lula and I ran into Lisa Jarussi-Smith who is the See Spot Walk Event Organizer. I know how these things go, I bet she’s already working on next year’s event. Sit, Lisa, sit! Lie down, Lisa, lie down! Take a break! You’ve earned it!

image

We also got to see Hannah and Mike, Lula’s fabulous foster parents. Lula was so happy to see them both!

image

We wouldn’t even have Lula if I hadn’t agreed to do the artwork for See Spot Walk this year and run into Hannah and Lula that fateful day in January. Evidently it pays to keep adding things onto my To-Due list, and then to actually DO them.

This time was definitely worth walking the talk!

image

The Grass is Greener

The last time I wrote, Lula was doing the hula on her quilt in the garden and I was admiring the weeds and feeling lazy, when what should appear in my mailbox but an invitation to the Idaho Humane Society’s 24th Annual Lawn Party — with a collage I made on the cover:

image

I love a good segue.

It’s a really fun invitation created by Will Spearman with art donated by several of us local, animal loving, artists…

image

image

and is of course for the benefit of the Idaho Humane Society, the organization which brought us Lula, and Snug, and before them Redfish, Pomme, Dillon, and Scoresby. Our family, to say nothing of our hearts, would have been so much smaller without those furry girls and boys.

If your family, and your heart, are bigger because of the Idaho Humane Society you know exactly what I’m talking about, and if you don’t yet — run, really fast like you have four feet, to 4775 Dorman Street and change all that. It is the best feeling in the world.

image

You can also make a donation any time, which feels almost as good. The grass really does seem a little greener when it’s your happy pup or comfy cat enjoying it on a lazy afternoon.

Dancing in the Weeds

image

I’ve felt kind of lazy lately. It’s almost summer, the weather is getting warmer and the weeds just keep getting taller.

image

I know I’m supposed to be out there pulling those bad bad weeds, but luckily there are poppies which make it look like there’s method to my…complete lack of method.

image

I really have been working though. We launched the TVAA exhibition on collaboration, I’ve got designs in the works for some upcoming events, and I finished Kantha stitching the latest quilt.

image

I wish I could tell you I marathoned “Weeds” while I stitched, but once again, that would imply some sort of method on my part.

image

In fact, I marathoned “Scandal,” “One Tree Hill,” and “White Collar” — which can best be summed up as basically madness.

This is why I have 3 dogs. Dogs do not judge, neither my choice of Netflix marathons nor my secret delight in weeds.

On that note, I think it’s time for a little break….

image

Lula can hula, and I will just enjoy the weeds.

image

Gone to the Dogs

This week has gone to the dogs. Well, to my dogs anyway: Sirius, Snug, and Lula. You hear about Lula all the time because she is basically a miracle disguised as a hiccup. But before Lula, there were Sirius and Snug.

Sirius is pretty much a dog’s dog and other than having serious separation anxiety, which I will not embarrass him by discussing here, spends his time doing ordinary doggy things. He doesn’t have a lot of time for hanging around art projects and posing for pictures, though I do have this one of him with Snug — before Snug got his hair cut.

image

Snug, on the other hand, is a total ham and would gladly photo-bomb every shot I take of Lula if he could. He LOVES Lula and alternates between licking her sweetly, or stepping on her head and sitting on her chest. He weighs 15 lbs. which is close to 3 times as much as Lula, so she doesn’t put up with that for long!

Anyway, everyday this week has had a doggy demand — vaccinations, grooming, tryouts at Camp Bow Wow. It’s exhausting. I’ve barely had any time for art. So instead I’m sharing 2 of my 3 favorite reasons for putting the projects off until tomorrow….

image

image

image

image

By the way, that quilt they are playing on is the one I’m Kantha stitching for Lula to hula on. So see! I am trying to get work done. It just doesn’t look like I am.

Who Knew?

This is as close as Lula will ever get to wearing a grass skirt.

image

This is probably as close as Lula will ever get to picnicing in Hawaii.

image

This is a detail of the quilt I block printed with the feather wood block from my “Confluence” print — which I have already spent 20 hours Kantha stitching, for future picnics with Lula, and only finished one fifth of so far.

image

So is this.

image

And why, you ask, go to all this trouble for one little pup with four left paws, who would not eat pineapple if you paid her?

Lula.

Must.

Hula.

Perfectly Imperfect

Keeping busy takes real discipline. When I don’t have a deadline, I don’t have a focus for all my energy and I’m a little like Lula with my feet heading in one direction and my hands heading in another.

Assigning myself projects to fill the time between my “real” deadlines helps, and so this week I worked on a new Kantha stitched quilt I hope to share next week, and a new Pom pow blanket….

Before:

image

After:

image

I’m really working hard at being disciplined about staying busy, not falling into the gaping maw of inertia, and as a result I stepped for a moment into a different sort of rut. A rut I mentioned in my last post — the “pattern of perfect repetition” rut.

Fortunately, Lula knew just how to show me the error of my ways…

image

trim.1082DCAF-4DCF-45FF-BDEE-4558577B0BAC

(Click on the text above to see a video of Lula in action!)

Obviously Lula did not think this blanket had nearly enough POW in its Pom pow! So I changed that…

image

And then because it wasn’t too late, I even made a quick fix on last week’s pompowsity…

image

She may be a bit challenged in the perambulation department, but Lula knows how to keep me on my toes! Thank you Lula, for the reminder that around here we prefer the perfectly imperfect.

Much better!

image

WORN…Lula

To be perfectly honest, this is the way Lula prefers to spend her days — au naturel — just the way DOG made her.

image

But, it’s too cold and snowy lately, and Lula tends to tip over a bit more than most pups, so “clothing” is generally a good idea this time of year.

image

Besides, Lula is a girly-girl, which means she likes to dress-up and she tends to follow the same blogs I do. That’s how she knows that bloggers like to post about what they are wearing. One of the blogs we read regularly calls that segment “Worn.”

I’m going to tell you right now, other than painting my boots, I don’t plan to share my wardrobe with you. Lula, however, is her own dog. And this is Lula’s wardrobe:

image

And this is Lula’s wardrobe after I “painted” it with a few different filters:

image

image

image

Up to now I’ve only painted a portrait of Lula in an imaginary spotted coat, but I look forward to creating some artsy wearables for her soon.

image

2D or 3D, I know she will wear it well!