Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Mid Mod Moon

Mid Mod Moon. Oil on panel, 7" x 5". $195. [buy now]

Mid Mod Moon is in the online store!

To be honest, I'm pretty surprised about this. I made the painting for Yuletide, and expected it to be gone almost immediately. Last year, Yuletide happened at the museum, and it was a busy, high-energy show. But as often happens with art shows, a change of location and hours resulted in poor attendance. Almost none, really.

Hopefully this will be resolved for next year, and if not, there will almost certainly be an alternative venue. Will keep everyone posted!

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Just in time for the Holidays: A New Online Store

Mixology With a Twist. Paperback, 92 pages. $25. [buy now]

With the release of Mixology With a Twist, and the final show of the season over, it's time to retreat to the studio and immerse myself in fresh projects. 2016 is shaping up to be quite a bit different from recent years. With the exception of Spokane's Artfest, I will be taking a break from festivals. During this respite I will continue the exciting work I have started in two new mediums: ceramics and enamel.

Meanwhile, I have created a complete online store for my Mixology work. Both books, the popular new Cocktail Cards, giclée reproductions, and original paintings are now available in one clean and simple storefront. I will continue to add new, mostly small paintings to the store over the next few weeks, so be sure to check in from time to time to see what's available. All of the paintings from Mixology With a Twist that haven't yet sold are currently listed.

Also, I will be placing new links (like the one above) into this blog, which lead directly to the item in the store.

As I settle in for the winter, I am wishing you, and all of us, a peaceful season to come.

Monday, November 9, 2015

Yuletide is This Weekend!

Mid Mod Moon 2. Oil on panel, 5" x 7". $195. [buy now]

Yuletide kicks off this Thursday with a private party at the Downtown Spokane Public Library!

I'll be there with lots of original art (including Mid Mod Moon, above), both Mixology books, high-quality giclée reproductions, and of course, my new Cocktail Cards (the perfect stocking stuffer). 

Here are the deets:

Preview Party November 12, 5 – 8 p.m.
Yuletide, November 13 – 14, 10 a.m. – 5:30 p.m.
Downtown Spokane Public Library, 906 W. Main (corner of Main and Lincoln, across from Nordstrom)

I know how much you all like your martinis, manhattans and rocket shakers! So, in addition to Mid Mod Moon, I've made several more new small original paintings just for Yuletide. Check them out after the jump. Hope to see you this weekend!

Friday, November 6, 2015

Juan Connery / Book Release Tonight!

Juan Connery. Oil on panel, 12" x 12". Sold.

Mixology With a Twist comes out tonight! It's been over a year in the making and it seems unreal. So excited!

This week has been crazy. Everything had to be varnished and framed in time to hang the show Wednesday—but not before showing up at 7 a.m. to help Mike install track lighting in Mizuna's banquet room. He liked the way the room looked during last year's Mixology show, and wanted permanent art lighting. And I am always happy to help light art! 

Add to that the fact that I piled some extra projects on myself, like the new Mixology Cocktail Cards, which were designed, ordered and packaged over the past week, and well, you get the picture. 

This will be a great party. Mizuna looks beautiful and the food is always amazing. Sherrece Scott (and friends) will be on hand to make five drink specials from the book, including her own invention, El Corazon. Mixology with a Twist will be for sale along with the first book, cocktail cards, giclée reproductions and of course, the original paintings from the new book.

There's still more to do today, so Ill leave you with an excerpt from the book about a fortuitous trip to Bend, Oregon:
Phoebe Pedersen, owner of Bend’s Dogwood Cocktail Cabin, awoke one night to a phone call. Bartender Grant McFarren had the perfect name for his new spicy scotch drink and couldn’t wait to share it. A year later, as I planned a trip to Bend, my husband Paul told me about a bar with a drink named the Juan Connery. I promptly went to the Dogwood. A giant painting of a strange woodland party by artist Philip Newsome dominated the room. The extensive menu overflowed with cleverly named original drinks like the Rye-an-Gosling, but when I asked my server to surprise me, she brought the Juan Connery. It was fate.
And, it was great.
For a photo of the show hanging in progress, join me after the jump.

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

The Northwest

The Northwest. Oil on panel, 8" x 8". $295. [buy now]

Shopping for barware has its perks. For one, you get more barware, duh. But this time, I got a new favorite drink as well.

I can't spot Reneé Cebula's Raising the Bar trailer without stopping, and the woman knows what she's doing. She spends a lot of time in the Perry district near my house. Guaranteed sales. Anyway, the last time I spotted her she was engaged in conversation with Ash Hayden. We hadn't met, so she introduced us and explained that he had tended bar for a well-known cocktail establishment here in Spokane. Ash is now working on a new project, an online bartender training course called The Bar Wit. (Check out the link for the kickstarter details. I'm excited to see what happens with this!)

Although I already had the number of recipes I was shooting for, I explained my project to Ash and asked if he might be willing to contribute. Within days he had texted me the recipe for The Northwest. Inspired by native northwest plants, Ash's drink pairs gin with rhubarb-based Zucca amaro and mint. 

I doubly loved this cocktail, and here's why. 
1. It's delicious and gets better with every sip.
2. Zucca amaro is on my hard-to-find list, but I already had it for another favorite recipe in the book, the Bad News from Houston. More bang for your Zucca buck!

The Northwest will be on display at Mizuna this Friday for the book release party. Please join us, pick up a book and find your own new favorite drink!

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Cocktails are in the Cards!

My husband Paul is an idea man. 

Whenever I feel down about my business, he'll toss out twelve different things I could be doing, I won't get around to any of them, and then I'll feel worse. This time was different.

Last week, he asked out of the blue, "how many recipes do you have?" "Between both books?" I added them up in my head. "Fifty two." "What if you had them printed on playing cards?"

He went on to explain that often bartenders use flash cards to memorize drink recipes, so using my paintings and recipes on cards was a natural. While I spent maybe a minute marveling at the fact that I had exactly fifty-two recipes, Paul found an online printer that made custom playing cards. Fifty-four unique cards per deck---one for each recipe plus a front and back cover.  Three days later they were designed and ready to order. Boom!

Trouble was, the two shipping options. Free shipping would get them to me in two weeks, in the middle of Yuletide. They are perfect stocking stuffers, so that's great, but it would be nice to have more opportunities to sell them. Well okay, shipping option number two might get them to me in time for the book release party. For $165. Nope. 

Free shipping it was, with fingers crossed.

Damn, I love a nice surprise. This morning a cheerful Fedex man arrived at the door with a big box of Mixology Cocktail Cards. Ordered October 30th, delivered November 2. And they are beautiful. (I think a shoutout to is in order here. )

Sooooo.... get your Mixology deck o' cocktail cards this Friday at the Mizuna release party, or the following weekend at Yuletide! $10 each, and the perfect gift for your cocktail-consuming friends and relatives. Already own the books? Keep them nice and tidy, and keep these handy wipe-clean cards at the bar. I know I will.


Monday, November 2, 2015

El Corazón, and Book Release Friday!

El Corazón. Oil on panel, 8" x 8".

Mixology With a Twist debuts Friday with a party at Mizuna, so it's time to celebrate with El Corazón, by Mizuna bartender Sherrece Scott. 

This painting nearly kicked my ass. Let's just say it was NOT a "one and you're done." Having a history with the brick walls at Mizuna (the site of one of my earliest art shows), I really wanted that background, but getting contrast with the brilliant opaque red of the drink was tough. I had better luck with one aspect, at least. The week before starting this painting, Willi Sheller taught me how to make a heart-shaped garnish. Perfect timing!

The story behind this drink involves a bit of coincidence as well. Here's an excerpt from the book: 

Sherrece Scott, bartender at Spokane’s Mizuna, promised to share her new drink, Satan’s Sap, long before work began on Mixology With a Twist. At Mizuna many months later, I pored over a lengthy new bar menu, finally ordering El Corazón. As it happened, El Corazón was Sherrece’s newly-renamed Satan’s Sap. Rich, fruity-but-not-sweet, and spicy, El Corazón had me at the first sip. This drink’s balance is crucial. Sherrece, ever the perfectionist, tastes both lime juice and cayenne each time she makes it, adjusting to be sure it is sufficiently spicy and not overly tart.

What I didn't have room to mention is that Sherrece bent over backward to make this recipe accessible for home bartenders. One ingredient, a frozen blood orange purée, is easily available to restaurants, but not so much to retail shoppers. Sherrece spent weeks trying every grocery-store fruit concentrate she could get her hands on until she found one that perfectly mimicked the flavor AND color of the original purée in the drink.

Sherrece will be on hand to make El Corazon—plus many more scrumptious concoctions—Friday night. Come on down and have one!