Sunday, June 19, 2011

father's day

to all the dads out there, happy father's day. it takes a special person to be a daddy....and i think my boys scored on getting a good daddy. (i also scored on getting a good daddy).  so caleb and i put our heads together and made something pretty cool for both of them. i often roll out a a long piece of craft paper and let caleb scribble or paint on it. we've ended up with these accumulated drawings from over the last 10 months or so. my way of keeping them is to cut them down and scan them in so that when he grows up, he can see his little boy artwork.  i took several of his scanned scribblings, layered them in different transparencies in photoshop, and created a little abstract painting. i then printed them and mounted them on wood blocks for josh. so now josh has 3 small, original abstract paintings by our very own artist in residence. these were his father's day gifts:

{they look really handsome on wood!}

and to continue on with my recent obsession with using caleb's energetic scribblings as backgrounds, i made a digital collage for my own dad as well. this is the front facade of the home we are building, about which my dad has been very excited and supportive. 

thanks for being such great daddies!

Thursday, June 16, 2011

the moon followed her

in all of these collages, i'd like to add more hand done elements, but am enjoying creating a kind of base or foundation with photoshop. i have lots of ideas for getting these off my computer an onto a final format, but i am also wondering what i'll do with them once they get off the computer. give them away? man i'd love to be selling artwork's kind of the tree falling in the forest question. if i don't get it out of my hands, does the artwork exist? does my artwork need to matter to someone else to be important?

Thursday, June 9, 2011

caleb's bird

i am loving having fun with some of caleb's scribbles. he loves pencil and pen the most, while he prefers eating paintbrushes and paint. some days we roll out a big piece of craft paper, scatter some art supplies on the floor, and he scribbles until his canvas veers onto the wall, baby brother, or the floor.  i cannot imitate the kind of urgent, energetic mark of a small child, and yet i love it. with my hand it looks too contrived, so instead i use the real deal.  i used to have my nieces mark up up a piece of paper to prep for a collage or painting, and love seeing their marks come through.  i don't think this collage is entirely finished as i want to add my hand to it, but for now it exists in photoshop!

{collaboration #1: by mommy & caleb}

Friday, June 3, 2011

it's that time of year...

after having taught or worked in schools for a decade, there are two times of year that get me a little nostalgic. early august when school buses roll out of hibernation, new shoes are broken in, and stores are littered with notebooks, three ring binders, back packs, and lunch kits.  and then early june when places like Jones Hall, UH pavilion, and even Reliant host back to back to back graduations.  i think about all the kids i know or have known who may be the first in their families to be handed a diploma or the first to head off to college. or they may be the 8th generation to do so, but nevertheless it's a time of excitement and relief. sadness and newness. anxiety and nostalgia. it's when i feel so happy to know the teenagers in my life who are glorious blends of confidence and self consciousness. it's when i miss teaching the most and the opportunity to shed a few tears over the kids who left a little handprint on my heart.

today i got to honor a beautiful young woman i've known since she was 7. i left her life for a few years when i moved to boston, but sandwiched around those years are memories of eating ice cream on hot days at the chocolate bar, when she first got into soccer, picking her up from school with her beautiful and talented mom....then moving back to houston and gradually back into her life and feeling stunned by the gorgeous and gracious young woman she's become. congratulations my young friend! you are loved, and though  it may not be the coolest gift in the world to an 18 year old, let this be a little talisman that marks the beginning of a journey.

{the little girl in the collage is actually my aunt judy as she embarks on one of her first journeys}

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

hiatus from everything except babies

hi. my name is holly, & i fell into a baby filled hole for about 6 months.
between bringing cole home and then learning i am pregnant {what?!? yes. pregnant.} with apparently boy #3 {my lucky number....think i'll stop here}, i haven't created much. well outside of designing/creating a vision for our new-under-construction home with some fabulous architects i haven't. oh, yes, and of course creating baby #3. but i won't write about that.

but all of the sudden i am on a collage rampage and it feels good. i am talking like a week long maybe shorter rampage. there's a lot to show, so i'll spread it out over many posts so as to make sure the next 6 months don't fall back into a blogless hole.

starting with this one i made for perhaps one of the most gifted women i know. she is moving to london with her family, so her naturopathic business is in the hands of some of the other most gifted women i know. {seriously - if something ails you, give heights of health a shout. i think they are responsible for getting me pregnant twice over.}

tracy, if you happen to read this trying-to-climb-out-of-a-baby-filled-hole blogpost, i will miss you. but i am sending you lots and lots of love and energy and adventure wishes. xoxo

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

why adoption matters...(to me)

it's been sooooooo long since i posted a blog that it seems almost pointless to pick it back up. and given that i don't even know who or if anyone reads this blog, it seems funny to put something like this out there.

josh, caleb, and i just brought home our second son/brother: cole linden. there was no labor involved, we just had to wait a month and a half from the day he was born to actually hold him and count those fingers and toes. they're all there too! cole's place in our family is unique and extremely special because he is adopted. caleb is no less special - in fact i am seeing something come out in him lately that is so utterly wonderful and not OF me, his own sweet, playful, curious, and humorous spirit...but cole, well, he is the fulfillment of a dream for me. since i was very young i decided i wanted to adopt.  i don't exactly know when, but i do know i was wayyy too young to be a mom, but somehow i knew i wanted to adopt. i used to say i wanted one from every major nationality - asian, latino, african, european... i used to say i wanted my own model UN. so it came as a surprise to me when we were floored - i mean really put in our place - by the domestic program at gladney. when we first went up there and heard the panel of very young birth moms talk about their adoption plans, i was convicted. they were so brave. so courageous to do this life altering thing and then try to go back to their normal (mostly) teenage lives. we were hooked.

and almost 2 years later (or really, 20 some odd year later), cole has come into our lives...right where he was meant to be. again...floored. cole was born for me...for US. and i am so sure of that as i watch him balled up on his daddy's broad chest, more peaceful than i can ever remember being. i am sure because when i took him in my arms for the first time, he nestled right in and quieted.  he looked at us with his little old man eyes turned up and sighed. finally...he seemed to's you guys.

there are many who have not totally understood our decision to adopt. quite a few people have said (with that side long look you get when someone else thinks they already have the know, we've all done it), "you want to adopt even though you can have your OWN children?" and sometimes i have gotten this response like, "wow, you're so noble." i tell you, it's not about that. not at all. i am not noble. it's just about this thing beating inside of me, a pulse i have always had to feel enormous love for children. and that too is not really because of something in's because of something in THEM. the children i mean. they are so lovable. and they DESERVE to be loved. and that's why adoption matters to me. because this little guy, our little guy deserves to be loved and we can give it to him. at least we can give our very best version of human love to him, i am sure of that.

i must add how very awed i feel by our birth mom too. because really, her love for cole surpasses all. she had enough to say i know what you need and i know it's out there and i'm gonna do my best to find it for you. i think she gave colie olie enough love from the moment of his birth to get him safely and wholly to us 6 weeks later. {thank you}

as we get to know cole a little bit better each day, i am growing another heart. one for each of my boys!

Saturday, October 30, 2010

coolidge says BOO

someone asked me recently if i was coolidge. i love the idea of me (a stay at home mom and artist) sneaking out late at night with my paint cans and a baby strapped onto my back. what a picture! although graffiti is certainly controversial, i stand by my love of coolidge's stencils. the printmaker in me loves the multi layered silkscreen look.  plus i appreciate the occasional revolving images and like having something besides drab concrete to look at. great cities of old had seamless relationships between art and life...something i wish houston had more of! another conversation for another time, but in the meantime, a HAPPY HALLOWEEN from me, a newly painted TURQUOISE (or maybe more tealish) fitzgerald's, and coolidge! lovely.

{maybe he'll paint me an elephant along the fence in my back yard}