Saturday, July 31, 2010

Out of the Blue - Dayton Air Show

A whisper rippled through the crowd with a hush settling as the Top Gun Anthem bellowed over speakers all across the airfield. Standing poised on the lawn of the Blue Angels VIP Tent, it was as though we are on the frontlines of a heroing display of American pride... jetting out of nowhere to maneuver death-defying stunts in our midst.

Rocking the skies, the Blue Angels’ six jets blazed trails at 400mph with precision flying; challenged by inverted courses and intersecting paths to miss utter collision by a mere 18 inches of separation.

When asked the question, “How much is computer controlled vs. pure gut?” the answer came back – SHEER GUT balanced with intuitive smarts from solid training.

The six pilots took to the skies in Boeing F/A-18 Hornet jets – painted in the Navy colors of blue and gold, guided by #5 Lead Solo, Lt. Commander Frank Weisser, a friend of my sister's. Thanks for a once-in-a-lifetime experience, Lieutenant Frank!

The pictures say it all!!!

The Painted Memory

Tuesday, July 27, 2010


University of Cincinnati College of Design, Architecture, Art and Planning (DAAP) - has become a creative force with which to be reckoned, receiving global acclaim.

Attending the 2010 DAAP Fashion Show preview night elevated my senses to an ethereal realm – suspending disbelief of the unimaginable couture. The techno beat, electric haute lighting, and glitz & glam all around were pivotal in building anticipation. Expectations were exceeded off the charts!

Models featured handcrafted, one-of-a-kind ensembles by DAAP Seniors that were ideated from sketch to pattern creation, and then brought to life with needle and thread. Chic evening wear, lingerie, sports wear, and musical instruments sewn into future-esque garments were only a handful of themes that commanded attention on the catwalk.

Over-the-top styles made believers out of audience members that, for a mere 2 hours, Cincinnati was the new Paris, Milan, and New York City of fashion capitals. The Midwest Project Runway just trumped NYC!

DAAP boasts the success of grad Althea Harper, a finalist on Project Runway Season 6 and invited her back to grace the audience with her story to stardom. Making her mark in the fashion scene by using fluid fabrics to silhouettes the female form as strong and beautiful.

Walking out of the auditorium, it was as though a fountain of ideas were pouring through the right side of my brain. Immediately, I began my own fashion sketches, followed by a splash of watercolor to give a sense of color-way within my imagined Collections. Loving the idea of a conversation print & pattern that’s heroed within the lead piece and how this signature element influences the complimentary garments through the SCAMPERED Method – it’s this jazzed pulse I imagine that gives fashion designers a natural high.

As the night concluded, the crowd’s standing ovation was merely a hint of the excitement radiating virally from that moment on.
Cincinnati Bucket List – must include visiting UC’s campus to attend the renowned DAAP Fashion Show next Spring.

The Painted Memory

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

The Truth About Caricatures!

Caricatures are the true testament if you are a good sport with the ability to laugh at yourself or not! It's fascinating how polarizing they can be.

As a surprise valentine, I received a caricature of myself...flattered by the thoughtful gift yes, but at the same time, eye opening! Thinking the artist had missed the mark, even though there was some resemblance, I inspected the caricatures of others around me. Finding myself chuckling over their similarities, I couldn't help but smile when coming back to mine. Yep, it was actually executed with more than a hint of reality.

Sharing my self awareness with others verified a chorus in unison - "caricatures magnify imperfections"!!!

Interestingly, caricature stems from the Italian verb that means “to load” with its true purpose being to exaggerate certain features, pack as many into a portrait as possible while expressing the person's essence balanced with recognizability.

This prompted my curiosity of the origins.
In the 17th century, Caricature emerged as a distinct art form with the works of an Italian artist named Annibale Caracci. Caracci's concept was called the "antithesis of beauty." Rather than following the normal trend of the time which was to imbue subjects with as much beauty as possible, the caricature drawing was intended to produce a portrait that was loaded with meaning. This early form of caricatures was the province of the rich who had them produced for amusement.

A recent party allowed for a second attempt (Thanks, Dave!) - much happier with the outcome, I'm here to tell you that it is possible to genuinely smile with the finished product reflection...

But, be sure to give the artist specific instruction, "ACCENTUATE MY POSITIVES" if you want to be happy with the end result!

The Painted Memory

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Performing Before Peacocks

Can you imagine giving a serious presentation and after posing a question, you’re answered by a peacock!? Beginning in 1920, the Cincinnati Zoo was home to America’s second oldest opera company until 1972. During the 90th year gala celebration at Cincinnati Music Hall, international opera stars Sherrill Milnes and Carol Neblet recounted their memories of singing among the animals and in between breaths, silence was broken by the trumpeting of elephants or a tiger’s roar. With the curtain call at 8:45pm enough light remained during the summer solstice to anticipate the call of the wild to holler back during the first act before utter darkness silenced the breeds. That would have been the ultimate entertainment!

Discovering this fascinating history inspired me to do a peacock study. The eye of the feather is absolutely beautiful with it’s midnight center haloed by an electric blue just as striking as the glow of Capri’s legendary grotto – encompassed by a wall of vibrant chartreuse cascading to emerald green. Rich tones that would make a stunningly sophisticated wall-covering for a library or study when complimented with mahogany trim.

Perhaps your local arts have a surprising unexpected history worth uncovering!

The Painted Memory

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Rooftop Toast

I've never forgotten the philosophy of my geography professor. When studying in Luxembourg, he highly recommended for each new city venture to "get as high as you can get" - even though swaying toward hippie in nature, he clarified to his students that this rule of thumb is specifically speaking to a bird's eye view of the city.

Adopting this mentality gives a great lay of the land before exploring by foot. Even in Cincinnati one can appreciate the fresh perspective this provides. Taking advantage of Carew Tower observation deck is the perfect outlet to seeing our city's gems within a 360 degree spin at 574-feet up.

Photo Gallery:

You Locals have no excuse so add it to your list!
The Painted Memory

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Happy 4th of July!

In Ronald Reagan Style - Red, White & Blue pumping through my veins
I love the idea of celebrating our Nation's independence in America's small towns. The heart and soul of these communities dotting the map, in the tiny corners of our country embrace a down-home patriotism that is the genuine pulse of the USA. Evidenced by a sea of red, white and blue flags, bunting and streamers. Celebrating togetherness - cookouts, picnics, Cornhole (for you Midwesterners!), diving into a refreshing pool and bike rides along a parade route represent ultimate summer bliss. On a day such as this, a former president comes to mind who dedicated his life during 1981-1989 to protecting and strengthening these freedoms we salute on the Fourth of July.

Visiting the Reagan Library & Museum in Simi Valley, California was an invaluable experience to be reminded of a great man's leadership to restore prosperity within our country's borders and peace with nations abroad.
A pivotal point, in 1986 Reagan obtained an overhaul of the income tax code, which eliminated many deductions and exempted millions of people with low incomes. At the end of his administration, the Nation was enjoying its longest recorded period of peacetime prosperity without recession or depression.

President Reagan's principles are certainly worth celebrating with a bang! So when enjoying fireworks tonight at Ault Park, appreciating the patriotic message in the sky will be a symbol to all of our country's heritage and greatness.

Happy Birthday America!
The Painted Memory