Sunday, November 23, 2008

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Featured Artist in Golden Review

There was an "Artist Spotlight" about Mark in the Golden Review supplement in the Tallahassee Democrat this past Sunday, November 9, 2008. Hope you got to see it!

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Teaching at the Senior Center

Mark now teaches Artistry in Clay at the City of Tallahassee Senior Center on Mondays, 10 am--1 pm. Sign up today! Enrollment is on-going!

Sunday, September 14, 2008

New Website!

Yes, we have upgraded to DSL with our phone company so now Mark has a new website:

Thanks for visiting!

Sunday, August 31, 2008

Table Rock Painting/Poem

Yes, Mark has finished his piece for the Table Rock State Park artist-in-residency agreement. We finally got it photographed today.

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Paint and Burn

Part of Mark's studio practice is maintaining spontaneity by making large-scale gestural ink paintings. He has to splash a lot of ink around to work out the compositions and keep his work lively. Working on big newsprint keeps the product from becoming precious, and makes "the process" primary. Artistic discoveries and (hopefully) some of that dynamic spirit are translated into finished works on clay and archival papers. Some of these big sketches becomes giftwrap or packing materials. Others are "offerings".

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Green Cay Wetlands Park

This morning, we visited the Green Cay Wetlands Park in Delray Beach to do some sketching and photographing. This park is sponsored by the Palm Beach County Water Utilities department. We saw the usual birds--herons, egrets, limpkin, spoonbills, woodstork, ducks, moorhens, gallinules, cormorants, anhingas and 1 turtle, 1 gator and 2 snakes.

River Rocks

Yesterday, we did a shopping spree at Pearl Art and Craft in Ft Lauderdale. Mark painted these SC river rocks on new Annigoni paper that he bought there.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Visiting S Florida

We've been visiting my family in Palm Beach County (Delray Beach and Lake Worth). During this time, Mark has been working on his assignment for the Artist-in-Residency agreement with Table Rock State Park, SC. In addition, he's also been playing with niece Gigi (

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Soul Mates August 2008

Maid in the Shade

Pomegranate Way

Real Blossoms

Mark will be showing 3 pieces in the upcoming Soul Mates exhibit at LeMoyne Center for the Visual Arts ( The opening reception will be Friday, August 1. Come out and see the exhibit!

Saturday, July 05, 2008

Fraternal Twins

Mark's sister, Jane, had commissioned these twin paintings--one for herself and one for her reiki teacher. We delivered them to her recently when we traveled to OH for their oldest brother's wedding. Can you tell the differences?

Thursday, July 03, 2008

Happy Birthday Mark July 1, 2008

On Monday, June 30, we left the Walkers' home around 11am. It was 63 degrees at that time! We felt cold but we didn't think anything of it. We drove south on I-75 and stopped at the Kentucky Artisan Center in Berea. I bought a jar of bourbon garlic jelly and a packet of spoonbread mix for my sister and family as souvenirs. Then on to Atlanta to stay two nights in Douglasville with the Harrar family. Sofia, the youngest daughter, is now 14 months old. That evening, Mark and dad Jamie celebrated Mark's birthday by drinking some absinthe. That seems to be the tradition everytime we visit the Harrars.
The next day, we hung out with Jamie and Sofia in the morning. Then we went to Spruill Art Gallery to pick up Mark's work. The gallery is getting ready for major construction (expanding the gallery and building a tall condo complex behind it). We met up with Robert at Jason's Deli for lunch and then return back to the Harrars' home for a delicious dinner of shrimp scampi on linguini. Even after a long day of work and being stuck in accident traffic jam for 3 hours, mom Debbie whipped up a chocolate cake to celebrate Mark's birthday.
By now, unfortunately, I had developed a sniffling cold. I think it was due to the sudden change in weather temperature and the stress of traveling. Nonetheless, we enjoyed our road trip immensely and I am always grateful for being a teacher and having these vacations!
The next day, on July 2, we left Atlanta to return to Tallahassee. On our way south, we stopped at Tanger Outlet Mall (our usual stop to do our annual shopping) in Locust Grove to buy some clothing at Eddie Bauer and a new pair of New Balance sneakers for Mark. Now we are glad to be home until our next trip later this month to visit my family in South Florida.

Cincinnati area, OH June 27--30, 2008

On Friday morning, we got ready to go south to Cincinnati for Dave and Marcia's wedding. First at 9:30 am, Eva got her hair done at Lisa G's in Mentor. Then we drove southwest and stopped in Ashland for a late breakfast/lunch at a Perkins restaurant and to get gas. We arrived in time to film/photograph the wedding rehearsal at Good Shepherd Lutheran Church in Montgomery. I served as the "official" videographer for their wedding. After the rehearsal, Dave and Marcia hosted a pizza party at their recently built home in Maineville, OH. Lots of guests attended the party. During this long weekend, we stayed at the home of Carol and Dick Walker in Oxford, OH (home of Miami University, yes, Miami is a famous name also in OH, named after the Miami Native Americans). The next day, we arrived at the church early so that I could set up my camcorder and tripod. Unfortunately, I think my new wireless microphone ran low on batteries so I could not record the vows clearly. Later this summer, I will edit the wedding video for them. After the ceremony, the official photographer photographed everyone at the church formally. Then they went to a local park for an outdoor photo shoot but a giant rainstorm came and everyone had to get back in the limo. Meanwhile, Mark and I went to a local Staples store to get more blank dvds for my camcorder (I had forgotten them at the Walkers' home!) and went on to the reception at Maggiano's restaurant, right across the street in a mall from the church. The menu was excellent! There were buffet appetizers (stuffed mushrooms, raviolis, artichoke dip(?)), 2 kinds of salads, 4 family-style entrees (salmon, 3-cheese raviolis, lasagna, chicken parmesan) and 2 kinds of desserts: tiramisu (yummy!) and apple crostadas with vanilla ice cream. Everyone also danced the night away until about 9:30 pm. The adult children of Dave and Marcia (Brent+Noelle, Cindy+Mike) served as wedding attendants and gave heartwarming speeches about their parents. At the end of the evening, we drove back to Oxford, tired and exhausted but very happy for the bride and groom.
On Sunday, we hung out at the Walkers' home and ate delicious meals (homemade blueberry scones for breakfast, grilled mushroom/cheese sandwiches for lunch and grilled shrimp/scallops for dinner). We also hiked a little in Hueston Woods State Park and played a form of dominoes game called "Mexican Train". Carol also showed us her bonanza of first-place/Best of Show ribbons that she had won at the Butler County Fair in 2002. She is an excellent quilter/fiber artist and is currently showing with Mark at The Story exhibit at the FSU Museum of Fine Arts.

Mentor, OH June 26, 2008

This was a easy day, hanging out with Eva and the nephews, Patrick and Casey. We went putt-putt golfing and Eva treated us to ice cream at Dairy Queen. Mark worked on rearranging the contents in our truck since Eva was riding with us down to Cincinnati for the wedding of Dave (Mark's oldest brother) and Marcia.

Heath+Mentor, OH June 25, 2008

The next day, Aunt Dot and Uncle Jim drove us to a historical house in Heath. Here, Aunt Dot often volunteers as a catering staff to serve tea lunches to patrons. This historical house, named Davis-Shai House, is owned by the City of Heath and was relocated to a large patch of pastoral farmland (ironically behind a shopping center). Now they are going through major renovation to expand the space in order to accomodate more patrons. Afterwards, we stopped by Amish-owned Yoder's Country Kitchen to buy 2 jars of jelly for my dad. Afterall, one can't go to OH and not get an Amish souvenir!
We ate a small lunch at Aunt Dot and Uncle Jim's home and left for Mentor, OH, to visit Mark's mom, Eva. We arrived in time to go over to the Kolledas' home (Mark's sister, Jane, husband Chris and sons Patrick and Casey) for Casey's 7th birthday dinner! Casey and grandma Eva had baked a caterpillar cake earlier and we ate that for dessert. Since Uncle Mark was visiting, the nephews were eager to spend a night at grandma's house that evening.

Athens+Granville, OH June 24, 2008

Yikes, I'm way behind on our blog. We're home now! We traveled 2600 miles and paid $552 in gas!
Now I'll just update the blog day by day with photos.

When we arrived in Athens, we visited Maya Lin's "Input" earthwork installation on the Ohio University campus, next to the stadium. Maya Lin is the architect/artist who designed the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington DC. Her parents were Chinese immigrants who taught Art and English at OU. Maya Lin grew up in Athens. For their bicentennial celebration in 2006, OU commissioned her to install this artpiece.

Then we visited Mark's nephew, Brent and his girlfriend, Rachel, who just graduated from OU and is currently job searching. We ordered ciabatta sandwiches as take-out and lunched at nearby Stroud's Run State Park.

After our brief visit with them, Mark was intent on seeing the famous Hocking Hills area of OH. We stopped to stroll around Ash Cave (more twisty/turny roads to get there and back on the main highway!) Then we drove north to Granville to stay overnight with Mark's Aunt Dot and Uncle Jim. They treated us to dinner at a local Mexican restaurant called La Paloma that specialized in stuffed sopapillas. Mark and I ate sopapillas with beans, cheese and rice. At their home, Aunt Dot graciously offered some hand-crochetted lap afghans to me so I chose two--one for our home and one for niece Gigi, whom we will visit soon on July 15.

Monday, June 23, 2008

On the Road Again June 23, 2008

After a week at Table Rock, it was time for us to check out and get on the road again. We traveled north and at south of Asheville, we visited the North Carolina Arboretum. We saw an excellent painting exhibit by Luke Allsbrook--mostly landscape paintings of Western NC. We also walked around the gardens and bought some souvenirs. After that, to avoid traffic delays at a tunnel in VA, we traveled the small twisty/turny small roads of VA to get to WV--beautiful farmscapes. Now we're staying overnight at a Budget Inn at Beckley, WV.
Tomorrow we'll meet Mark's nephew, Brent, and his girlfriend, Rachel, in Athens, OH (home of Ohio University) for lunch and then onward to Granville, OH to stay overnight with Mark's Aunt Dot and Uncle Jim. Good night!

Jones Gap State Park June 22, 2008

Today we went to Jones Gap State Park, a neighboring park east of Table Rock. We saw the Jones Gap Falls. I also did some photography while Mark painted at various locations along the Middle Saluda River. It looked like the trail is a popular spot for hikers and their dogs and families with children.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Sketching and Photographing

This morning, we decided to try out a breakfast buffet at Aunt Sue's Country Corner, 2 miles east of Table Rock State Park. We had eggs, hash browns, biscuits, gravy, grits and coffee.
After that, we hiked along Carrick Creek again but this time in a leisurely pace since we wanted to stop and explore to do some photography and sketching. When thunder began rolling, we returned to the cabin for lunch and a nap.
Now we're at the Visitors' Center again to do some blogging and Mark bought a souvenir t-shirt and some postcards. Those same Canada geese are going around and around eating grass like lawn mowers!

Friday, June 20, 2008

Blogging and Sketching June 20, 2008

I am blogging at the Visitors' Center while Mark went hiking to do some concentrated sketching/painting. We'll meet up again later this evening. Here's a view of Table Rock Mtn from the porch of the Center, with some Canada geese thrown in.

Greenville City June 19, 2008

We took the day off from hiking and went into the city of Greenville. We cruised Main Street downtown until we found a place to eat. We lunched at Bertolo's and we each ate an eggplant parmesan sub with chips. In the same building was the Artists Guild Gallery of Greenville, a co-op gallery. I bought a pair of metal earrings by Laura Dahl. She does etched metalwork. Afterwards, we strolled the beautiful Falls Park on the Reedy River, centered around its waterfalls. Along the river, there was a retail section called Art Crossing where artists can rent a studio space and people can visit the artists at work. Then we took a break at Spill the Beans Cafe to check our email on our laptop. After that, we visited the Greenville County Museum of Art (always FREE admission!) and viewed a watercolor exhibit of Andrew Wyeth and His Contemporaries. We chose Thursday to go into Greenville since the museum is open until 8 pm. There was a free concert that evening but we were too tired to stay for it.

Pinnacle Mtn Trail June 18, 2008

We hiked another long, long trail, this time, the Pinnacle Mountain Trail, Mill Creek Falls Pass and part of Ridge Trail. This was about 8 miles from 8 am until 7 pm. Needless to say, my legs were VERY tired at the end of the hike. They were stiff as logs and I felt like I couldn't move anymore.
On the hike, we saw salamanders while wading around on the falls. Mark saw a mama bear with 2 cubs but I had missed them (I just didn't have the strength to climb a short slope quickly to see them in a ravine in time.)
At Bald Rock, Mark did a fast sketch of Table Rock Mtn. This trail was more woodland-like and we saw lots of blooming Painted Indian flowers.

Table Rock Trail June 17, 2008

We hiked the Table Rock Trail, up and back, about 7.2 miles total from 7:30 am until 4:30 pm. It was tiring! My sandal strap broke and luckily Mark had his velcro pant leg strap to tie down my broken sandal. At the top, we could see the reservoir lake that provides the drinking water to the City of Greenville. At the end of the hike, we were eager to soak our hands and feet in the Carrick Creek waterfall.

Table Rock State Park, SC June 16--23, 2008

This year, Mark is doing his Artist-in-Residency at Table Rock State Park in the "Upstate" area of South Carolina. This is his 4th year doing this kind of residency. In exchange for a free week stay at a park cabin, Mark agrees to donate a piece of artwork, inspired by our stay, to the hosting state park.

On 6/16, we drove to Table Rock State Park (in Pickens County) via Macon, Eatonton, Athens, GA. In Eatonton, we visited the Uncle Remus Museum and tried to find Alice Walker's childhood home but didn't have time. In Athens, home to the University of GA, we lunched at Eat Hibachi, a Korean/Japanese eatery. We ate tasty bibimbop. Now why can't we have such a eatery in Tallahassee?!

Sunday, June 15, 2008

2 Latest Paintings

Mark is currently working on 2 poem paintings. One is titled "In a Pomegranate Way", commissioned by Dick Puckett, retired director of LeMoyne Center for the Visual Arts. When he commissioned the piece, he had only ask Mark to create something about the fruit pomegranate. The other painting, "Maid in the Shade" is for the upcoming juried group exhibit at LeMoyne titled "Soul Mates" (

Monday, June 09, 2008

Go Green! June 13--July 11, 2008

Mark and I have collaborated on 3 pieces for this exhibit. His poems are illustrated by my photographs. The opening reception is this Friday the 13th! 7--9pm at the FSU Museum of Fine Arts. The exhibit is the Artists' League Summer Annual ( . Come out and see this environmental show!

Update on Eva's Visit

Yesterday, after their boating excursion, while Mark and Charlie were tying up the boat, poor Eva misstepped on the floating walkway and fell into the water. She also hit her head on the concrete seawall. She got a bump on the back of her head but she seems OK now. Her camera, unfortunately, also went into the water. It may not work anymore but luckily her camera card is OK. We checked it at a local Walgreens today and all her photos were intact.

So today we took it easy and went shopping at New Leaf Market, a local natural foods store. We also browsed at Crystal Connection, a New Agey store and lunched at Habana Boardwalk, a recently opened Cuban cafe. Eva had shrimp in wine sauce with fried yuca and sweet plantains while Mark ate the usual fish in beer sauce and I had the pan con vegetales.

Saturday, June 07, 2008

Mark's Mom's Visit to Tallahasee June 4--10, 2008

Mark's mom, Eva, is currently visiting with us in Tallahassee. She flew down from Cleveland to view The Story exhibit at the FSU Museum of Fine Arts since her own parents' hand-created books are part of Mark's mini-installations in the show.

In addition to MoFA, we have also
June 5: visited the Tallahassee Community College Art Gallery and dined at Bianca's Italian Restaurant
June 6: visited the Florida Caverns State Park, lunched at Old Ice House Restaurant in Marianna where Eva posed with a 13-ft gator and participated in the First Friday Gallery Hop at Railroad Square in Tallahassee
Today we'll visit Havana and dine with the Corbetts. Tomorrow Mark and Eva will go boating with the Donahues on the St Marks River.
Check the blog again later to find out what we're up to!