Thursday, July 30, 2015

Peace bits daily

Team Sue

I love it when families get into it! In addition to Katie Hughes, posted last time, Sue Salsbury took charge of a team and saved me time and her money. I love it when it's a win-win. 

Suzanne Salsbury Waterloo, Iowa  USA

I enjoy sitting out in the yard watching the animals play.  It's a very peaceful pass time.There are no zebras in my back yard, but plenty of others to watch.  Maybe if I squint my eyes very tightly I will see a zebra off in the distance.  

Lori Salsbury

Remington Salsbury

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Peace bits, artists panic

Panic time!

My artist-participants are panicking now, emails daily with last minute glitches and problems, oh no! Where is that address? Which way is up? Wood? What project? Artists,'s an ART PROJECT, easy now everyone. Funny thing is, I am seldom the "calm one" but I'm deeply into director-mode and directors must remain calm at all costs.
Easy does it, everyone.
Enjoy the peaceful images.

Terri Thoman
Fine Print Dallas, Texas, USA

My first time participating in a project of this nature, and the challenge of creating an image for a theme in an odd shape has been rewarding.  When I first laid eyes on he the block I thought it looked like a pea pod... so came TWO PEACE in a POD.

Anne M Hoff Las Vegas,NV

Peace, for me, is a state of mind.  I portrayed one of the any places I find this refuge from chaos called life. The desert. The Joshua tree symbolizes the tenacity of dwellers within this desert climate, thriving and enduring, despite the extremes of our environment.

Katie Hughes
Waterloo, Iowa USA

Charles G. Morgan Victoria, B.C., Canada

The topic of “peace” has been a subject dear to the hearts of humans forever. It has been commented upon in prose, poetry, and song in every generation. The amount of art of all kinds that has been devoted to the theme is enormous. It is hard to imagine there is anything new to add. Alas, it seems to me that WAR and related violence is like a virus, infecting all humankind. If only WAR was a beast, like a dragon perhaps, or embodied in a single individual, then perhaps we could kill it. Wouldn’t it be lovely to go to a memorial garden somewhere and lay flowers on the grave of WAR?

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Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Team works!

Team Gayle

This year I tried something new with the Peace Puzzle and that is to have people work in "teams" so that my mailing tasks and expenses would be reduced. The entry fee for teams was of course reduced accordingly and the team concept made my life a bit easier.
These are the contributions from "Team Gayle" (Wohlken) who is a faithful woodcut printmaker, long time friend and participant in all the previous puzzle woodcuts. But wait! that's not all, in addition to four awesome images, I also got some maple treats, handmade in Ohio, a lovely loving note and a historical postcard of the maple factory.

Jeremy Wohlken
Dalton, PA

Busy with other projects, I tapped my son Cole to come up with an idea for the woodcut.  He drew me a picture of a woman who was meditating on nature; with imagery of animals, fish, trees and clouds.  I liked his idea!  Using his muse and applying my experience of illustration and design, we came up with the final image of the meditating woman whose hair is flowing out and forming the images of nature in her mind.  Cole and I were a team on this one, credit to my son for his vision.

Holly Lynn

Abby Blake

Gayle Wohlken
Burton, Ohio USA

"(W6 - Team Gayle)
Father and Child - the peace of love and trust"

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Thursday, July 23, 2015

Four more peace bits and lots of good stuff

Terry S Peart
Seattle, Washington USA

Beate Scheller
West Linn, Oregon USA

"My woodblock carving took me some effort to finish. Haven't done that for a long time. And it is not my primary printmaking technique I work with. Mainly I do etching and Stone Lithography.
To carve a dream catcher was fun, and meaningful for me. Coming to the Great NW from Germany this ""device"" of catching bad dreams struck always my attention. I thought the craft of weaving a dream catcher and the purpose of it reflects peace in itself. I tried to catch that in my image.
I love the idea of the 1000 puzzle piece project. So many people participate with different ideas, and I love puzzles, too.
Thanks Maria for your immense work with that."

Zoƫ Appleby
Devon, UK

I have a bit of thing about lettering. I have painted letters on lots of different surfaces including vinyl toys, furniture and clothing. Having dabbled in printmaking (mostly etching and lino) I was eager to rise to a new challenge and use lettering on my piece of the peace puzzle. My chosen word, Alcyone, is from Greek mythology, she's the wife of Ceyx. In the story she is turned into a halcyon bird, a kingfisher. This is the origin of the etymology for "halcyon days", the seven days in winter when storms never occur - peaceful days. I live in one of the wettest weather towns in the UK and for me, peaceful days are generally those with fair weather.

Caroline Rudge
Devon United Kingdom

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Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Still more nature, I'm loving it!

Alexandra Becker
Bristol, UK

"As I am normally a painter, I was very excited to have this opportunity to branch out and try woodcut for the first time. The theme of Peace was also an interesting challenge and I spent quite a long time thinking about if before I settled on the image of treetops against a darkening sky.
Like a lot of people I find a great deal of peace from being in nature, and there is something about trees at night I particularly love. The familiar becomes somehow mysterious in the gathering darkness. The trees seem old, and wise, and still. I am reminded that they have been here for many many years, seeing the hectic days of our lives come and go. I think of the river where I grew up and the trees I climbed, and I am comforted to know that out there, somewhere in the dark, that river is running and those trees are standing."

Mary Grassell
Hurricane West Virginia

Louise Cass Toronto,  Canada

This is a portrait of Sally (a 'rescue' Bluetick Beagle) brought from rural Ohio to the big city where she brings peace and joy to her adoptive family! Sally is wearing her favourite  (winter) Fairisle sweater while standing by potted hydrangeas which she also  likes.

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Tuesday, July 21, 2015

72 peace blocks in, 88 still searching for a home

Two weeks

With the deadline fast approaching, I am now receiving blocks daily delivered in USPS bins! I warned my mail carrier that I was going to get 160 packages in about three months but he just looked at me like I'm a bit nuts. Go figure. 
Anyhow, they are coming fast now and I think I am notifying everyone but if you get duplicate emails from me or you see your block published in the blog before I let you know...well, word on the street is I'm a bit nuts.

Here are three more for your enjoyment.

Esya Osherovsky
Toronto ON Canada

"This is my first try at woodcut. I'm usually working with lino. So I took part as a way of pushing myself. Plus being part of a project like this, is just too awesome to pass by.
My response the ""peace"" theme is based on the hope that if cats and dogs, and other animals, can coexist  peacefully, humans surely should be able to figure it out too."

Lisa Toth
Chester New York USA

Fiorella Mori
Rome (Italy)

From time immemorial, the dove is a symbol of peace, but if one dove can not extinguish the seeds of war, perhaps a whole flock could succeed. Similarly all men of good will, united in a common effort, could ensure that peace rule the world.

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Monday, July 20, 2015

Natural peace


In this modern world many of us seem to find peace in nature. Of course, I personally enjoy nothing more than a quiet hike, even a wee one, someplace where I am alone in nature. Modern living dictates that we bring nature to us as well to continue to enjoy when a mountain isn't available. And so we have pets and plants and gardens and the smallest of reminders that we are nature, and nature is peace. I am happy to find that many of my fellow world dwellers feel the same way.
Thank you Frank for all the awesome little prints and Rebecca for the print and note. 

Frank Trueba
Felton, CA, USA

"I find it extremely peaceful watching a koi pond--watching the variously marbled fish criss-crossing back and forth over and over under other can lull me into a meditative state.  Of course, should someone approach with some koi-chow, all bets are off and the very definition of chaos beaks out.  This contrast exemplifies the very yin/yangness of life and after observing the chaos it makes the calmness all the more peaceful.
I've been lucky enough to have participated in all of Maria's puzzle projects and am ever-so-grateful that she continues to put herself though the tribulations entailed in pulling-off these world-wide collaborations--particularly given the growth in participation over the years.  Thank you."

Rebecca Darge Christensen
Des Moines, Iowa USA

"Full Moon For Peace
Art can speak for me. If I can't speak, I will communicate with everyone through the channel of art.
If I bring people together to the table, with art and food, every prejudice that overrides beauty and goodness is broken.
Art can and should be accessible to everyone. Through accessibility comes understanding; the tie that binds us to peace and contentment.
Dedicated to the Peace Puzzle Project 2015"

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Wednesday, July 15, 2015

What the goodies do for me and two more peaceful images


I have reported that I enjoy getting all those little things with the blocks. I requested that all participating artists wrap their blocks in their local papers and for the most part, I am pleasantly greeted by art sections, headlines, comic strips, classified ads and all kinds of local flavor from all over the world. I don't read all of them cover to cover but I do spend a bit of time browsing and enjoying the similarities and differences between cities and towns the world over. 

As for the goodies, I enjoy most the hand-written notes almost always heartfelt and honest and funny and warmly welcomed. I used to write letters for my father after he lost use of his right arm due to a stroke. He wanted to write his friends and would struggle with a manual typewriter I bought him, pecking until he got too frustrated. Then he would ask me to write for him but when I sat down at the typewriter or the computer he would say: "Ay no, Tata, a mano, a mano!" 
So I would write "a mano" (by hand) whatever he would slowly and thoughtfully dictate to me. When his friends replied, I would take the typed letters from the mailbox, re-write them by hand, place them back in the envelope and give them to him resealed. He would then open them and say to me: "Ves? Ellos tambien escriben a mano" (See? They also write me by hand). Chuckle. Ay Papi, how I miss you...

Anyhow, thank you all for the notes and the strange and wonderful gifts of art and otherwise, wrapped in gift wrap, tucked in tiny boxes. I truly enjoy every one of them and they give me the energy I need to continue to do these projects. I much appreciate the time that goes into every carefully wrapped package and the thoughts spent choosing the tiny prints and gifts. With each one I feel loved and that's all I really need in life.

Two more peaceful gifts for everyone.

Kay Walker
Adelaide, South Australia

"When I see images of unlikely animal friendships on YouTube, those who would normally be the hunter and hunted relaxing in each others company, I am reminded of Isaiah 11:6 – “In that day the wolf and the lamb will live together, the leopard will lie down with the baby goat”
Here we are presented with an image of PEACE in the animal kingdom………….  Perhaps one day men will lay down their weapons of war and overcome hatred with love."

Andrew Stone Florence, Italy

"We are too many.
Conflicts arising from the scarcity of food and water, arable land, housing and jobs are all partly caused by the competition among us for the same resources.
Peace won't likely be in our future or that of our planet unless we can stem the growth of our species. At 7 billion humans and counting,  the human population continues to rise and the increasing pressure for dwindling resources and the effects of rising temperatures, air and water pollution and habitat loss are the driving forces of the mass plant and animal extinctions that have already begun. (and Peace must embrace the lives of all of the world's living things--not just humans).

Population control starts with family planning and birth control.
Sex education and the encouragement within communities for members to have small families can all help stem or reverse the problem of human overpopulation.
Birth control is one solution and contraception (the prevention of unwanted pregnancies) is one way to reduce our numbers and is better than the alternatives of
War, Famine and epidemic Disease.
So add my small piece to the bigger puzzle.
Encourage smaller families.
Make sure women (and men) around the world have access to safe and just reproductive care. "

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Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Peace bits coming in fast and furious now, isn't that a paradox?

Three more to show you today and three more tomorrow. I am swamped trying to keep up but as the deadline looms I better find another gear!

Randy Leibowitz Dean
Matthews, North Carolina, USA

Back to my hippie days when I thought we could change the world we used this sign for Peace. I believe it's a world wide symbol now. I still believe we can change the world. I am honored to be a part of this wonderful collective woodcut print. PEACE

William Evertson

I often host Art Parties; essentially I provide a theme, a table full of art supplies and invite friends over for a pot-luck evening of art and conversation. A theme from a recent party was "cut outs a la Matisse". To accommodate the shape of my puzzle piece I decided to once again borrow Matisse's wonderfully fluid female forms  and to have her peacefully enjoying a day of sunbathing at the beach.

Ruth Egnater
Okemos,Michigan USA

Choosing something about Peace was endless.  So many choices but only one to choose.  Last year, my favorite cat and animal,  Vincent the cat,  died from an invasive fast growing tumor.  Now I know your probably thinking what the heck does this have to do with peace?  When Vinnie sat on my lap or cuddled next to me it brought both of us great peace to be together, his more obvious because he could purr.  At night,  Vinnie liked to sleep on my tummy and if I got up for a few minutes and would come back to bed he would be waiting for my lap to go back to sleep on.  I have never had an animal that could bring me so much peace and love in too many ways to write and I am hoping Vinnie rests in peace, and there is a heaven where we can see each other again.  I miss him every day.

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Sunday, July 12, 2015

More peace coming at you

Linda J Beeman
Owosso, Michigan

At the end of 2014 my life was devastated by a mosquito virus called chykungya that I was infected with while in Japan.  I was unable to do the things I love, especially my work, Japanese woodblock prints.  It took 4 months before I was diagnosed andI began treatment.  This is the first carving I have been able to do since September 2014.
This scene is Lake Biwa and the surrounding mountains in Shiga, Japan.  Michigan and Shiga have been Sister States since 1968 and I am the Vice President of the Sister State Board. I love Shiga.  I love the mountains, so different from Michigan.  I love my wonderful friends there.  But, I was also told not to travel back to Japan this year because reinfection (there is no vaccine) would impair my health further.
So, this is my Peace – to travel to the place I love through my work and to do the work I love and imagine I am there.

Sarah Fenner Surrey, UK

(transcribed) Well this was tougher than expected! I've never done wood carving,or print of any sort but just liked the collaborative concept and the subject of "peace". So many things I would have liked to have carved from praying hands, as subject, a single snow drop, but I settled in the end for simplicity and that space where we were created, grew and became, in peace. Thank you for all your hard work and allowing me to be a part of it.

Nancy Osadchuk
Calgary, Alberta

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Wednesday, July 8, 2015

London and Texas send peace

Deadline approaches and finances

Participant artists are scrambling to send their contributions before the deadline. They actually think I'm pretty strict mwaaahahahahahaha! Yep, I'm a meanie alright. Happily looks like most artists are sticking with it and nobody yet has raised the white flag. Maybe I will get all the pieces back!?

So what happens if I don't get a piece back? Usually I have to wait until all that piece's "neighbors" are in place. Then I trace the hole, cut another block and make up something quick, carve and done! I'm full of ideas (among other things heh) so a new image is not a problem. 

And a question I get often is "what do you do if there is any money left, do artists get a refund"?, money, money, 
Money, money, money
Must be funny
In the rich man's world
Money, money, money
Always sunny
In the rich man's world
All the things I could do
If I had a little money
It's a rich man's world (Abba)

Short answer is: there is NO money left, like, ever. When I start a puzzle project I meticulously dream up a budget, carefully itemizing every detail and add a little more because everything goes up during a year's time. By the time the project ends I invariably have to kick in a few bucks, maybe a few hundred. So you see, these projects are a true labor of love, pure love of art and getting artists together. I get a kick out of the puzzle projects and that's as far as I have been able to come up with a rational reason why I keep doing them. I am a little strange.

And now, the puzzle pieces

Robin Bray-Hurren Brockley
London, UK

Ava Everett Plano, Texas, by way of Redwood City, CA

"Excited to be able to participate in such a wonderful project."

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