Monday, December 21, 2015

Sketch Course set for Jan Feb 2016

Regular/daily sketching is a challenge for professional artists, beginners and everyone in between - and yet it is the most recommended practice to: 
Improve your skills
Develop greater focus 
Sharpen observational skills
Experiment with new ideas/concepts.

The First Sketch course of 2016 has been scheduled for the following dates:
Tues Jan 12
Tues Jan 26
Tues Feb  9
Tues Feb 23
7:00 pm - 8:30pm

All levels welcome as everyone will work at their own pace/level.
$50 per person for a total of 4 sessions over a period of 8 weeks
Sketch from life, objects, people at meetings with Drawing exercises at each meeting
Sketch ideas and drawing prompt emails will be emailed every 3 or 4 days to help keep you going.
Shared creative environment
Accountability to help keep you sketching
Encourages daily sketching from life and observation
We are working on securing a clothed model for for two sessions - there will be additional model fee of $5.
Sketchers acquire all their own supplies (small portable sketchbook, pencil, a permanent marker, and a small travel watercolor set if you are interested in watercolor sketches). Choose a sketchbook that is easy to keep with you daily.
Facebook group page for members to share their sketches in between meetings.
To register contact Geralyn's Art Studio at 973-275-1966
Payment will need to be made in advance to reserve your space.  
There is a maximum of 14 students for this course.

To view more of my work online visit my portfolio
and my online shop ErinGoPaint

Friday, October 16, 2015

Sketching Club Course

Regular/daily sketching is a challenge for professional artists, beginners and everyone in between - and yet it is the most recommended practice to: 
Improve your skills
Develop greater focus 
Sharpen observational skills
Experiment with new ideas/concepts.

The Sketch Group course will run on 3 Tuesday evenings (and 1 Wed evening), starting on Nov 3rd, 7-9pm, as follows: 
Tues Nov 3 
Wed Nov 18
Tues Dec 1 
Tues Dec 15
At Geralyn's Art Studio, 103 Baker Street, Maplewood NJ 07040.

All levels welcome as everyone will works at their own pace/level.
4 sessions over a period of 8 weeks
Sketch from life, objects, people at meetings with Drawings exercises at each meeting
Daily emails of sketch idea that will also serve as your sketch reminder. 
Shared creative environment, and accountability.
Encourages daily sketching from life and observation
$48 per person for a total of 4 sessions
Sketchers acquire all their own supplies (small portable sketchbook, pencil, a permanent marker, and a small travel watercolor set if you are interested in watercolor sketches)
Pinterest group page for members to post their sketches in between meetings, and for sketch idea prompts.

Any questions just let me know.
To register contact Geralyn's Art Studio at 973-275-1966
Payment will need to be made in advance to reserve your space.

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Boot wearing season

Get Up
Dress Up
Show Up!

My thought - and mantra for the day!

Fall Squash Harvest

I absolutely love the colors of Fall. The colors, the smells, the produce, the chill in the air, hot cider, pumpkin anything... and, more recently... experimenting with squash.

I adore spaghetti squash and it's similarity to noodles.  And zucchini for it's versatility - it's amazing what can be done with zucchini... makes very tender juicy meatballs when used in place of breadcrumbs, to muffins, breads, grilled pizza bites, the list doesn't end.

As seen in Simply Gluten Free Magazine, Sept Oct 2015
After doing my research for this Simply Gluten Free magazine piece I found a variety of squashes to explore, cook and bake with.
Let the GF Fall cooking, roasting, baking begin!

If you enjoy my work and want to see more visit Erin Go Paint

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

'Reluctant' Cook

Reluctant. I used this to describe myself here but though I chose that word, it doesn't feel comfortable. And it has remained uncomfortable to me since I wrote it last week

It doesn't tell the whole story...  or give an accurate picture.  

Granted I don't have a passion for cooking, but I DO have a passion for eating healthy, eating fresh and most of all... eating safe!  

Cooking gives me that   So I am quite happy to cook.  It gives me peace of mind to know it's safe, to choose what goes in, to know what I am putting in my body - and into my family.  
And sometimes - it is fun!
So why 'reluctant'?  

Because pretty much any day of the week I would rather be making art... drawing, painting, sketching. Or playing with daughter.  Or painting,  crafting and sketching with her! 

My solution.... keeping a small sketchbook handy in the kitchen. So I can sketch between chopping, or while I am waiting between food prep steps.  Ideas come while I handle the vegetables, herbs and spices... or while I daydream looking out the kitchen window.   

Dinner gets made, and dinner gets drawn. All of the art in this post was conceived in my kitchen sketchbook.  

In fact, this piece became this page in Simply Gluten Free Magazine's Sept/Oct 2015 issue.

So it is a win-win situation.

And it is why I have started working on a kitchen coloring book for adults... more to come on that!

If you enjoy my work you can see more at Erin Go Paint

Friday, September 18, 2015

Measuring Up - Kitchen Confessions

I don't like to measure when I cook. Even when I bake, which requires a balance of ingredients to make the magic happen, I still tend to approximate wherever I can.  Not really sure why, but I definitely avoid it.

Maybe it feels to confining.  Too much like rules.

Somehow it feels like it stifles my flow and creativity. Guess I like to imagine I am conjuring up and magically creating something new every time.

The fact that I am a reluctant (for lack of a better word) cook may explain it.  I cook for necessity not for the passion of it.   I know people who touch heaven when they are in the kitchen. 
And based on the exquisite foods they create I am pretty sure heaven comes down and touches them in the process.
Again, Seriously.
I touch heaven when I draw, paint and run. Those activities fill me up - even when they are difficult.  That is passion.
So in my daily cooking time I try to spice it up. (pun intended)  Looking to make the process more exciting, adventurous...  more of a game. So I wing it. A lot.  
I approximate. 
And guesstimate.  Makes the doing more interesting.
And makes the results more of... an adventure.  Nothing ever tastes exactly the same as it did last time. I know, there are pros and cons in that.
But the meals are there, hot, healthy and ready when everyone is hungry. And the cook is happy because she enjoyed the process.

If you enjoy my work you can see more in my shop Erin Go Paint and my online portfolio.

The Dressmaker, a vignette

Enter the Dressmaker's charming cottage.  She leads you up the staircase to her studio,  the air heavy with the past.  With history.  With memories of all the dresses, and the women, and the stories that came before you. So many stories.  Some memories faded and receding. All held within the dress form.

What will she create and craft for you?  How will the fabric, the mannequin and your story guide her? How does she see you?  How do you imagine yourself?  Will she bring to life a commanding stiff brocade,  a shimmering iridescent taffeta,  or a soft, flowing and ethereal chiffon.  

She will be inspired by your story,  your essence,  your dreams.  So cozy up on her workroom sofa, sipping the hot tea and she will quietly, gently ask questions as you examine the fabrics. And she will learn your story. She will create a dream of a gown that is for you alone.

And your story will be held and cherished by the mannequin on which it was sculpted, adding to it's rich history.

Friday, August 28, 2015

Kitchen Nook illustration

A cozy kitchen breakfast nook, accented with red!
I was not finding the room templates I wanted to show my paintings and prints on the wall of a room... so I am creating my own.  Sketching and designing rooms that I love.

Monday, July 13, 2015

Gloriously Gluten Free Hot Artichoke Dip

Our car limped into the car repair shop as they were closing up on Friday afternoon.  And, so it sits there for the weekend, grounding us.  Not that it flies or anything, but grounding us in the sense of sticking close to home, and taking care of things on foot.

Now as luck would have it, we actually have all the necessities within walking distance of our new home including 2 pharmacies, 2 grocery stores, our bank, a liquor store (yes, all the necessities!) a playground, and a butcher.  So though it may be more convenient to drive here and there on a whim... it is actually nice to plan and walk, and go out and about on foot as a family.

Our 9 year old was less than pleased with the plan for the weekend and it took some getting used to. Yesterday when I suggested a snack she said "but what I really want is the cheesy hot artichoke dip and we don't have the stuff for it."  But, again as luck would have it I was able to pull out of fridge and pantry all that we needed.  Well, we improvised a bit and used shredded cheddar instead of Monterey jack - but it was just as awesome.  As she was grated the Parmesan she said she was so very happy at that moment.
That is the best comment ever.

All you have to do is combine all ingredients above in a dish that can go in the oven leaving some of the grated Parm to sprinkle on top right before it goes in the oven.
Bake at 350 for 30 minutes.
Let set for 5 minutes before eating.
We used tortillas to dip.
Our hot creamy cheesy artichoke dip made out day!
If you enjoy my art and would like to see more visit Erin Go Paint

Saturday, July 11, 2015

Easy GF Strawberry Ice Cream

As part of our Mommy-Summer-Camp plan, I promised my daughter lots of cooking, food prep and experimenting in the kitchen.  She's 9 and is a serious foodie, so we want to encourage that.

Also, given that eating gluten free is keeping her migraines in check... I want her to see how much great food can be made and enjoyed fresh and without gluten.
So we broke out the Kitchenaid Stand Mixer and the ice cream bowl that has been quietly and patiently waiting in the freezer for it's chance to make some magic!
I like things to be simple - the simpler the better - so 5 ingredients and straight forward preparation makes me happy.

5 Ingredient Strawberry Ice Cream

In a large bowl we combined the milk, cream, sugar, salt, and strawberries.

Stirred the sugar into the heavy cream about 30 minutes before so the the sugar can dissolve. And, we ran the strawberries through our Magic Bullet to prevent chunks in the ice cream(my daughter likes smooth ice cream).

Then she poured the mixture into the freezer bowl of the Kitchenaid. And licked all the bowls and spatula.

The machine mixed for 20-25 minutes while we went out to play in the yard.

When it was finished we scooped it out into a dish to freeze and again licked the spoons, etc.  It's amazing that we got as much ice cream into the freezer as we did!

Froze it for about 5 hours and had it for dessert - perfect and creamy with just the right amount of sweet!
There is still some left for tomorrow (unless my husband goes back in late tonight!)

Friday, June 26, 2015

Plank, Pain and Perspective

Last night at 2am I was jolted awake from a deep sleep by a searing pain. Like fire shooting down my right side.  It was so intense and immediate, I jumped out of bed - which seemed to make it worse. 
My assumption of course was digestive.  As a celiac that is always the first thought. "What did I eat?"
But my immediate list of reliefs...  bathroom,  drinking water,  ginger chews did nothing to relieve the ricocheting pain.

Panic started to take hold as I tried to think which organs were involved?  Or was it my intestines?  Was it all those cherries we picked and ate yesterday.  Did my appendix burst?  Was it a kidney stone and the pain was radiating?  Was it time to wake my husband and call an ambulance?  
Meanwhile I had just gotten a clean bill of health -  and a "you are doing great"  from my Doctor.  Now my insides were on fire!

I continued to drink water and tried to find a comfortable position as I contemplated the worst. As I turned slightly to the right the pain was momentarily soothed, calmed.  That gave me a moment of clarity. A moment was all I needed.

That is when I remembered the post-dinner plank pose family competition.  Ah ha. The plank pose. A brilliant core building exercise but not one to be under estimated, or to over-do.
And there it was,  the pain was shooting from under my ribs to my groin and could not be pin-pointed to an organ because it was muscular.
If I stayed in the right position the pain continued to be soothed and relieved.
So I got back into bed, gingerly, and found a position where it was not being aggravated.  And as I drifted off to sleep I was reminded that though so many issues are triggered or caused by celiac...  
It is not responsible for everything that goes wrong.

And this morning, gratefully, I am fine.

Monday, June 22, 2015

Lemon and Ginger for what 'ales' you

Last night I was up in the middle of the night because of an accidental gluten ingestion.  Was it the chips marked GF or the Tamari marked GF?  Not sure but neither consideration makes me happy.  Nor does it make me feel safe about labeling and supposedly safe food production.  I will approach each with caution, or most likely avoidance!

Not feeling too terrible this morning, though tired from the loss of sleep due to late night bathroom visits. But, whenever this is the unfortunate circumstance I have a few go to foods the next day:
First and foremost - a lot of water.

After a few glasses of plain water I add fresh squeezed lemon and fresh grated ginger to the water... that I drink all day long.  It's delicious and refreshing and the ginger especially works wonders.  And makes a lovely drink to sip on any day.

My formula is pretty simple on these kind of days peeled apples, bananas, cooked rice and plain yogurt.
And time... plenty of time.

Saturday, June 20, 2015

An Apple a Day

An Apple a day

It's been too long, a wild and crazy few months... and I am searching for my voice again.  So I am starting with something basic like the apple.  Seemingly so simple, so simple they are easy to overlook. But the varieties available are almost endless - and they pack a super healthy punch.
Even without the skin, which I still can not digest well, it's like a crunchy, sweet, juicy vitamin. 
A bright an sunny way to start the day... and sure to help keep the Doctor away!

You can see more of my art here... ErinGoPaint

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Gluten Free Recipe Doodling

We are in the process of selling our home and moving to a new house.  11 years is long enough to fill every nook, cranny, and closet, with all items imaginable.  

Now a million things must brought into the light of day and find a spot in a box.  

Which would be work enough, but add to that the waist deep paperwork that comes with the selling, buying and moving, and a highly sensitive child who is very attached to our home.

I am struggling not to drown in overwhelm - to stay organized, connected and creating. I stumbled upon a simple process today that made me happy - and in turn, anchored me.

While browsing recipes for dinner I found something new that sounds delicious on Simply Gluten Free 
it's simple enough, healthy and of course gluten free!  
Chili Lime Shrimp Pasta Salad a winning taste combo in my book!

I printed it so I could prepare it later this week. To focus my scattered thoughts on what was needed I started doodling each ingredient on the printed page. That simple process brought me joy. And a calm that has eluded me for the last few weeks (possibly months)!

Looking at the recipe now makes me smile, and makes collecting the ingredients a snap. (also makes me want to add color)

It should be easy enough to prepare while packing this weekend, without consuming too much precious time.  I look forward to tasting it, but know the kitchen time will be fun too as my sketches keep me company.

I will let you know how it all turns out.

Monday, February 9, 2015

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Tired of Gluten Free being TV's go-to punch line

I am tired of gluten free being the butt of all jokes.
Is it 'soft' not to want to die young of stomach cancer? 
is it 'soft' to not want to live with crippling bone pain? 
is it 'soft' not to want to face down the debilitating pain of a migraine every week of my life? 

I really want to see this ad pulled. 
Enough is enough

Read the post at GlutenDude

Monday, January 19, 2015

Monday Motivation... Avocado Cutter - My Favorite Kitchen Tool

I love avocados!  I could eat them everyday, and quite often I do. (I have even sketched more than my fair share of avocados)
And my love of guacamole borders on obsession. Guacamole is one of the most delicious, healthy and oh so satisfying naturally gluten free snacks around!
So when my husband bought me this OXO Avocado Cutter - it may have been the best present I have ever gotten. It is certainly my absolute favorite kitchen tool.  
The curved green top is a blade (1) that easily slices through the avocado, the pitting tool (2) grabs the pit so it can be taken out smoothly -  and beautifully with no loss of any precious fruit. I have had more than a few pits shoot across the kitchen as I attempted to scrape the last of the fruit off.
Then you can cleanly scoop and slice it out of the skin with the fan blades (3). And if you are careful enough you can achieve perfect slices for a salad presentation.

Most of the time I am making guacamole so I am not concerned with perfect slices, but it certainly makes scooping it out of the skin so much more efficient than a spoon or fork!
Bottom line it is infinitely easier to eat healthy when the prep is quick and painless, and this tool makes it so.

Click here for a FREE printable pdf of my Gluten Free Blessing 

Monday, January 12, 2015

Monday Inspiration - Eat Healthy!

A rainbow of fresh nutrient dense vegetables - all naturally, deliciously Gluten Free. Take a little extra time in the produce department and try something new this week. Add an extra veggie to your meal. Snack on raw carrots or slices of crisp, juicy red pepper. Make a smoothie and throw in a little kale, or add avocado for creaminess. 
Experiment, explore, enjoy!
Eat healthy and you will feel healthy - and Be Healthy!

Sign up here to get a FREE printable pdf Gluten Free Blessing

Monday, January 5, 2015

A Gluten Free Blessing for the New Year

A New Year, a fresh start, lots of good intentions... let's get things off to a positive start!  Even with the New Year, resolutions and big plans it is easy to get derailed. Slip, slide and then your well-meaning resolutions become a distant memory.
But every day, every meal is an opportunity for change, and for making the best choices for your health and well being.

To help you stay positive and stay on track I am sharing my Gluten Free Blessing. It is my New Year's gift to you... download a FREE print... for you, for a friend, for a loved one! Whether you are just starting your GF journey, or a veteran of negotiating labels and hidden ingredients... this Blessing is for everyone.  
It is formatted to fit in an 8x10 frame or 8x10 mat opening.

Wishing everyone a Happy & HEALTHY New Year and a beautiful Gluten Free journey!