Monday, October 31, 2011

Karen Blackwood, our November Artist of the Month

Don't miss out on seeing Karen Blackwood's work at Two Twelve Arts Center during the entire month of November. The opening reception is this Friday, November 4, from 7 to 9pm. It is free and open to the public. Stop by to meet the artist and view her magnificent landscape paintings.

About the artist:

Karen Blackwood was born in New Hampshire and received her BA in the Studio Art program at the University of New Hampshire, with continued studies at the Art Students League in N.Y. and the Institute of Art in CA. After spending her early professional life as the Art Director for a major New York City Ad Agency, Karen moved to California and dedicated herself to painting. Because of her training in the classical tradition, Karen's works at this time were mainly portraits and figurative before she moved on to landscapes. As a member of the California Art Club, Karen's new passion for landscapes "bloomed among a group of plein air painters inspired by the rich tradition in California Impressionism." The California Art Club included many renowned arists; such as Granville Redmond and Edgar Payne. Those artists as well as John Singer Sargent, James Abbott McNeil Whistler, Winslow Homer and the Hudson River School Artists are influential to Karen.

Karen's landscape paintings have been included in exhibitions organzied by the Huntington Museum in Pasadena, CA, the Pasadena Historical Society and the California Art Club. Her piece "Winter Trees" has recently been included in American Artist Video Magazine/Fine Art Conoisseur. Karen was recently awarded the Gold Award for Birmingham Our Town Juried Show, and has also had solo shows at the Birmingham Community House and the BUC in Bloomfield Hills in Michigan.

This past summer, Karen was among a select group of artists invited to join Plein Air Magazine host, Eric Rhodes, to participate for a week in the Adirondack Publisher Invitational.

Karen has taught landscape painting workshops at various art centers in Michigan, Connecticut, and Maine; including her 'Landscape Oil Painting Workshop' at Two Twelve Arts Center.

Karen is represented by Susan Powell Fine Art Gallery, 679 Boston Post Rd., Madison, Connecticut 06443. To view more of Karen's work visit her website at .

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Saline Art Walk 2011...The Video!

For those of you who were unable to attend Art Walk last weekend, check out this video that Orin Cassill created and posted on YouTube. What a wonderful, art-filled and inspiring weekend; this video captures it well. Congratulations to all of the artists and great job on the video, Orin!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Wearable Art: Dye and Nuno Felt a Silk Scarf

On Sunday, Michele Montour taught 'Dye and Nuno Felt a Silk Scarf.' In this class, students began by dyeing a blank silk scarf with the colors of their choice. Next, the students felted merino wool onto the silk fabric, adding both interesting texture and detail. The students also used thread and other materials to give their scarves more unique touches and bits of texture. Not only does the merino wool look beautiful and enhance the scarf's composition; it also adds extra warmth. Check out these photos from the class. I don't see a scarf here that I wouldn't love to wear! These scarves truly are wearable art.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

A Must-See This Weekend: Art Walk in Saline

Make sure to visit Two Twelve Arts Center and more than 12 local artists at Stone Arch Arts & Events this weekend during Art Walk in Saline.
  • Stop by Two Twelve Arts Center at 216 W. Michigan Ave. to see the art of Sharon Graf-Horning in an exhibit entitled, "Exploring the Terrain of Art in Clay." There will be demonstrations, snacks and beverages, and a studio tour.

  • Stop by Stone Arch Arts & Events Center at 117 S. Ann Arbor St. to see 12 local artists and the Saline Potters Guild. Artists will be demonstrating and ready to answer any questions you may have. Fine art, pottery, photo art, fiber art, and jewelry will be represented. Snacks and beverages will be available.
Reception: Friday, October 21, 5-8pm
Saturday, October 22, 12-5pm
Sunday, October 23, 12-5pm
Don't miss out on your chance to see these artists at work! This event is free and open to the public. |

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Up-Cycling Sweaters to Mittens


If you haven't noticed, being "green" is becoming more and more popular. Whether this means you eat only local and organic foods, wear only organic clothing, or swear off all cleaning products with chemicals that are harmful to the environment, the desire to protect the earth for future generations is defining lifestyle factors for a large portion of society. So what does this have to do with Two Twelve Arts Center? Well, another way to be green is by up-cycling. For those of you who don't know what this means, up-cycling is the process of converting waste materials or useless products into something new and useful.  Take Nancy Miller's class, "Up-Cycling Sweaters to Mittens." In this class, students bring in a shrunken sweater (something useless to them for its intended purpose) and leave with a pair of mittens. With a little sewing on the machine, they line the sweater mittens with fleece and add personality with decorations and embellishments. Nancy had two students this month in her mitten class, and they both enjoyed giving new life to an old sweater by creating a cozy pair of mittens. So just think...You can create an adorable pair of mittens and feel good about it because you are up-cycling.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Art Escape: Fused Glass Pendant

This Tuesday, Art Escape students enjoyed the Fused Glass Pendant class offered by Kathy Campau. In this class, students chose from a plethora of colored glass pieces and cut out shapes and layers to be formed into a pendant. Each student was able to make multiple pendants, and after the glass is fired the instructor will make them into necklaces. This class had a very open, laid-back style in which the students were able to experiment with color and design. The pendants will change a little in the firing process, so it's best to approach the creation of fused glass pendants in a very loose manner. We can't wait to see how the pendants look after the firing!

Glass of many colors!

This is an example of what the pendants will look like after the firing.

Kat is also offering a Glass Sun Catcher class as a part of Art Escape on November 15, from 9:30am to 12pm. The class has a similar process and costs $35, plus $5 for materials. There is still some space left, so call us (734-944-2787) and sign up today!

Kat also has room left in her Fused Glass Dish class on November 2, from 6:30 to 8:30pm. The fee is $25. For an example of this dish, check out Kat's blog here.

Monday, October 17, 2011

More Studio Tour Fun

The Studio Tours held on Friday made for a wonderful and inspiring day for all of the Two Twelve artists who attended. Each studio had a personality of its own; reflecting the art and creativity of the artist. We would like to thank the three artists that shared their space with us one more time-Sandy Webster, Linda Klenczar, and Anne Sheill. And thank you again to everyone who contributed to the delicious spread of food, and to Kat Campau for organizing the tours. It was a great day, and we look forward to more studio tours in the Spring!

Sandy's Studio:
(To read about Sandy's studio check out our last post.)

Linda's Studio:
Linda's studio space was very spacious, and she certainly didn't need any help filling the space with her gorgeous pastels. I am just amazed at how much she produces! She had her own work lining the walls, an entire wall of books, an old family loom, and various easel stations that allow her to work on more than one piece at a time. A space that was both professional and comfortable, Linda's studio felt like the perfect place to let creativity cultivate.

Anne's Studio:
Anne's studio took over numerous rooms in her home. The first area was on her main floor directly under a skylight. Here, Anne focuses on pastels and painting, with a ventilation system under her easel to manage the pastel dust. The skylight was a great feature, allowing Anne to work under natural light. Her second studio space was on the second floor, where Anne said she spends most of her evenings. The room had some great shelving space, a large and accessible flat file for paper, drawers filled with found objects for her assemblages, and some very interesting antique pieces that added plenty of personal character to the studio.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

First Stop of Studio Tour: Sandy Webster held Friday, October 14

Jean Canavan (l) and Sandy Webster at the first stop of our tour.
Sandy's studio is neat, efficient, bright and welcoming. Her supplies are carefully and systematically arranged on custom made shelves divided into areas that speak to all of her creative endeavors whether it be crafting, sewing, knitting, painting or just contemplating her next venture. The colors are warm earth tones. The room was formerly a bedroom in Sandy and Ted's home. Ted graciously took over the lower level for his projects and Sandy laid claim on this bright cheerful corner of their home. She gives credit to her husband's willingness to use his carpentry skills to create this art-friendly space.

Rob on duty

Caught this shot yesterday. Rob was busy at the front desk trying to help someone decide what class to take. If you need course selection counseling, Rob is a great source of information and advice. He's on duty all day Friday and Saturday mornings. If you haven't met Rob Kinsey, you should stop by and say hello. He is a third year student at EMU. He spent his first two college years at College for Creative Studies in Detroit. He is now finishing up his required teacher education training and plans to become an art educator. Rob teaches classes at Two Twelve and heads up the Art on the Go program with Amara Karapas. He also teaches at the Teen Center in Saline. If you are interested in encaustic painting (painting with wax), give Rob a call when he is at Two Twelve and he will set up a class for you in his home studio in Saline.
By the way: notice the big thick class registration book.
Five years ago it was a purse size notebook with about 10 pages in it. My how we've grown! Thanks everyone.

Sundays are for catching up

Hi everyone and welcome to our new followers. We promise to be the Pied Pipers of the art world...Today is a great day for catching up on things...Thank you to Sandy Webster, Linda Klenczar and Ann Scheill for hosting the Cakeeaters studio tour on Friday. (pictures to follow asap) Each studio reflects coves of inspiration and solace as well as landing pads for the gentle muses. The key to a great studio space appears to be shelving, drawers, files, organization and attention to what will make you more efficient. (A whole drawer full of creative talent helps too.) Of course our tours included a traveling buffet of delicious food. We never travel anywhere without great food! Yes, food nurtures our creative souls. Thanks also to our great chefs and to Kat Campau for organizing the event. Today is the perfect day to claim under used space in your home and start creating a studio. Clean and organize...or relax and plan...

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Fall Leaf Watercolor

Art Escape this Tuesday featured Keith McGuire's class, "Fall Leaf Watercolor." With a beautiful Michigan Fall in full swing, this class was the perfect way to capture nature's latest color scheme. Students created their own still lives to paint choosing from a multitude of leaves, and each left with a detailed watercolor. The class was a great introduction to watercolor as a medium, and was enjoyed by beginning and experienced watercolor students alike.

Minor side note...
I have updated our comment section so that anyone can comment, and can do so anonymously if they prefer. This should help those of you who were having problems commenting. We love your comments! Please follow us and then sign up for our updates on Blogger!

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Happy Columbus Day

Happy Columbus Day to one and all. Thank you Mr. Columbus for enabling us to have a day off to enjoy this glorious fall weather. Happily the roots of the Two Twelve Arts Center are grounded in Massachusetts where Columbus Day is an honored beautiful day off for the business office staff. Everyone should follow the New England tradition and take off to see the peak foliage. Great inspiration for your color palette. Mother Nature knows about pigment!

Saturday, October 8, 2011

The art of Sharon Graf-Horning

Congratulations to Sharon Graf-Horning, our pottery studio manager. Sharon's Artist of the Month reception was held last night. Meghan clicked in 86 guests who all feasted on luscious cheeses, desserts, and of course wine. Sharon created the desserts, the serving dishes, the tablecloths, the necklaces for the staff and five rooms filled with her breathtaking works of ceramic art. She is a woman of incredible talent, energy and drive. Thanks Sharon. We love you and your work, and yes, your desserts!

Friday, October 7, 2011

Art Reception tonight: Friday, October 7, 7-9 pm

Hope everyone is planning to visit us tonight for the reception of Sharon Graf-Horning's show, "Exploring the Terrain of Art in Clay." The work explores the traditional boundaries, form, and structure of ceramics inspired by our Two Twelve community of artists. Many pieces have also been inspired by Sharon's love of Cancun, Mexico: the sands, the sea, the colors, the smells...a feast for all the senses.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Art Escape: Silk Scarf Dyeing

This week's Art Escape class was Silk Scarf Dyeing, taught by Michele Montour. The class offered students the opportunity to create two unique and colorful silk scarves. The students used different folding, twisting, and tying techniques to create texture, and then dyed the scarves with the colors of their choice. Each student tackled their scarves head-on, and each finished scarf had a beauty of its own.
A scarf, all tied up, and in the dyeing process.
Another scarf, all twisted and tied, in the dyeing process.
After the dye has been set and rinsed, the scarves must be ironed.
One of the finished products. Beautiful!
All three students with their first set of finished scarves.
Great texture details were added by tying and twisting the scarves before dyeing the silk.
These fun diamond bursts were created using marbles and ties before dyeing the silk.

Two Twelve offers Silk Scarf Dyeing, and other similar classes, throughout the year. Be sure to check out our brochure at