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For the first studio tour of 2009, I visited the workspace of artist and illustrator, Lora Jost. I first met Lora when we worked together on a poster for the River City Reading Festival and I was so amazed by her illustration that I asked if I could visit her studio to see her workspace and more of her beautiful art. Lora uses several unique techniques in creating her work including scratchboard, ceramic mosaic, and collage. Her pieces draw from personal experiences and collected stories which are depicted with elements of beauty, whimsy, darkness, and joy. From her artist statement:

“I am drawn to experiences that are mundane, whimsical, and socially urgent. I like to mix these themes, and find how they link in spirit. I hope that viewers will identify with the stories my pictures tell. I hope that my art, in some small way, deepens our collective appreciation and compassion for each other and for life itself.”

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Over the holidays, my wife and I had a fun project: decorate the nursery! We had decided a while back that we wanted to have a robot-themed room, so I decided to do some fun drawings for the walls. The canvases are 2′x2′ and I used Posca paint pens which are water based, non-toxic and really fun to use! Here are some photos of the process and finished room.

Update: I’ve done a second post with more fun robot items for kids!

b_bot

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There’s one more show I’d like to encourage everyone to go check out! Heather Smith Jones has some of her beautiful work up at The Merc at 901 Iowa St. in Lawrence, KS. The show ends on February 1, 2009, but if you can’t make it to the gallery, be sure and check out her Etsy shop.

Also, if you didn’t see it, I did a studio visit with Heather recently and showcased some of her great artwork!

I have to say that it’s been a power week for gallery shows. There’s a lot to see right now, so get out there and support some artists!

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Vahalla Studios

Just wanted to mention another great art opening happening this week. On Friday, December 5th, 2008, Tad Carpenter and Dan Padavic are showcasing some of their new paintings, art prints, clothing, stationery, and gig posters at 1800 Baltimore (formerly Habitat Shoe Boutique) in the Kansas City Crossroads Arts District from about 6-9 p.m.

I’ve known Tad for a few years now and his stuff is amazing. I definitely recommend checking out this show and even if you can’t make it this Friday, the work will be up until December 28th, so don’t miss it!

Also, while you’re down there, you might check out the University of Kansas Art Department’s new Red Door Art Gallery, a gallery designed to showcase work created by current and former KU students and faculty.

Above image courtesy of Tad Carpenter

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This coming Thursday, December 4, 2008, the Wonder Fair: Art Gallery will be having an opening of new work by Justin Marable. Justin’s art is always wonderful to see, so I highly recommend checking out his work.

In case you missed it, I did a studio tour with Justin in early 2008 that was a lot of fun!

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If you’re interested in hearing some live music, come check out the jazz quartet I play with, the New Groove Dictionary, at the 8th Street Taproom in Lawrence, KS on Sunday night, November 16th at 10:00 p.m. It should be a lot of fun and a good way to kick start your week!

Here’s my poster for the event:

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