Welcome Bienvenidos!

* Individual and group art classes are available :) Contact me here or Facebook or my website SueBetanzos.com

* Summer classes in Coloring, Painting and Mosaic are starting! Contact me here or Facebook or my website SueBetanzos.com to arrange a local class for a fun summer activity. Ages 9 to adult, beginner to advanced.







Friday, June 22, 2012

Half Way There

Almost there. Still have to do the touchy part of  applying clear tile tape to the face, Carefully lift it off, turn it over, Carefully peal off the sticky paper it is on, then Very Carefully apply it to the round substrate that will be prepped with cement thinset.
It's a one shot deal from the time tile tape is applied to the face to the actual finishing. 
This technique is called the Double Reverse application method in mosaics and can be very touchy. I am both nervous and excited - I love challenging techniques.
I chose this method after reading about it in Sonia King's Mosaic Techniques and Traditions and Sandra & Carl Bryant of Showcase Mosaics use this method exclusively for all their public art installations. Their work is beautiful.
They also work in stained glass mosaics and after reading a forum on their technique I decided to use it for this project because of the extreme complexity of design and shading. 
It sure would be nice to have them here for tips - but here I go!
(the black piece of glass by the ear is for lettering, not part of the design)

Thursday, June 21, 2012

One Hundred 'Biscuits'

Tea parties are always fun. Memories of "tea and cakes" or "tea and biscuits in the garden" bring a smile and thoughts of pretty days in my neighbors garden with some sort of sponge cake and biscuits (cookies) with tea served from a favorite teapot. 

I lived in the UK for a few years while in the service. Bought a house off base about 20 minutes away in a small village by the sea. Learned all the nuances of living in the economy that cannot be experienced as a tourist or living on base surrounded by Americans. I preferred to experience the culture of another country and what better way than living in the economy where I could become a part of  the story instead of an observer. It was an unforgettable opportunity.

These charming cookies remind me of those days. They were an order placed by someone who will be making her own tea party in an inside garden since the outdoors is currently 107ยบ. The little teapots are a bas relief sugar cookie about 3" round hand decorated and embellished with sugar crystal flowers. Each comes in a clear cello bag tied with a satin ribbon and given as party favors. Ribbon colors of blue, spring green and two shades of pink will give an impression of a festive pretty garden when placed together. Twenty teapots were done in red, white and blue to celebrate our Independence Day and this year's Diamond Jubilee in the UK. 

One hundred teapot cookies weigh a little over 13 pounds. I like to do mail art on all of my boxes when I can. The smiles begin before the box is even opened.



Saturday, June 9, 2012

A NATURE Artist

At last, the article that I should have posted at the first of May. I know, kind of late, but I was sent a PDF which is not accepted to post and finally got the jpg version. For those who did not get the Tucson Lifestyle in their mailbox or rush to buy one, here is the two page spread. Nice and mentions my aussie sweetie Risa and even features my mosaic of my little dog. And no, sadly it's hard to read the article from this jpeg without a magnification via glass or zoom, so you would have to go the library to read pages 17 and 18. 

May was a great but super busy month and was gone so fast. Mother's Day orders got a little crazy and was unprepared for the response for my MoonLight Cookie Samplers. Then Memorial Day, then the Tohono Chul upcoming exhibit which will have two of my glass painting pieces. Now I am in Fourth of July preparations and laying plans for fall shows and promotions. 

I will also be adding pages to this blog on my sketchbook and process. How do I do this or that? Well I will show the how part soon. Meanwhile, you can still read this issue of May Tucson Lifestyle at your local library, one of my favorite hangouts. Did I mention how much I love books and reading?


Click to view the larger version

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Seek and Find

Original Proposal











Finished Mural


Elementary School mural finished! Lettering for the school name is currently being asked for as a donation from sign and trophy companies. Hand lettering is a skill all on it's own and I will defer to a digital output that will look much cleaner than I could ever do by hand. Plus the surface is rough, making hand lettering very challenging. If there is someone out there who can donate the lettering, please contact the school or me "~)
The current sign is a temporary printout until permanent lettering is installed. Better than a blank space!

I know that Tucson will open it's heart and someone will donate the lettering. Funds are so limited that this mural was done as a pay-it-forward gesture in gratitude for all of the wonderful people who have helped me and been generous to me - often when I least expected it which made it that much sweeter.
Done with house paints and sealed with clear satin varnish.

This is a STEM focus school. Science, technology, engineering, and math. The arts are not excluded as demonstrated by this mural. There are numbers from 1 - 12 hidden in the mural for a "seek and find". The little ones especially will have fun looking for the numbers. The Monarch butterfly shows it's stages from caterpillar thru  butterfly. A little family of quail have their own special markings. R2 D2 has a cousin that is more of a gardener than a space traveler and there is our own galaxy with sun and planets and special constellation! The live volcano spews lava that cools into sedimentary layers of rock that the robot is standing on.

So start looking for those numbers and let me know how many you find!