My name is Erika. I'm in love with making art, collecting old things & chasing after my two kiddos. This blog is a peek into my happy accidents & plots of total world domination.


Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Room 702

8x10 oil on board

Do you ever feel like you are running out of time? I'm about 6 weeks away from having my second baby, and feel like that time is slipping through my fingers. I know what to expect with the whole baby process this time around, but my major concern is time.  I love being a mother, a wife, and an artist but it feels like by growing a family, that the other roles are getting larger and the part that's just me is getting smaller.
I think I'm just in this juxtapose position that I want to have all my work done and have the whole birthing process over with. So with losing time, I just want time to go faster.  I know, now, it's just a waiting game for basically life to happen.

It's official, I have started working on holiday and client work, before I go on maternity leave.  After Nora was born, I think I only lasted a couple weeks before I was back in my art studio working.  Making art was the best sort of healing after birth because it was a little patch of time that I was doing something for myself and it's just what I needed. 

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

My favorites from Portland Feast 2014

If you love to eat as much as I do, you will want to go to Feast Portland.  I am still so full from eating, all weekend long, that I would go back for more, in a heart beat.  It was that good.

 I love seeing people passionate about what they do and everyone talked about what they made with so much joy and zest.  This event was so special because it highlighted local Pacific Northwest chefs, restaurants, and the best of the local food industry.  If you watch Top Chef or the Food-Network, there were a ton of celebrity chefs around every corner, and they were demoing, feeding the crowd and talking to everyone. I talked with the likes of Hugh Achenson (whose unibrow wasn't as noticeable in person) and Ruth Reichel (so much more eccentric and rad in person) and I have to admit I was a little star struck.

Feast is so unique, that there is the traditional open tastings with lots of food and booze during the day.  Then at nigh,t there were these magical parties with beautiful food, from some of my favorite Portland restaurants and in amazing transformed spaces.

The main event I went to was the Sandwich Invitational, that was tucked in Directors Park in down town Portland.  I have been craving sammiches the whole time, I've been pregnant.  So this was the perfect place!  This was a competition of creating the perfect or the most inventive sandwich.   There were every sort of sandwich, one could dream of! Everything from traditional fancy sandwiches to the twist of the ice cream sandwich.

Here are a peak at some of my favorite photos and vendors from the entire experience.

I can not say enough good things about Portland Feast 2014 because everything was so darn good.  Now the count down begins until next year.

My favorite yummy links from the event.

Olympic Provisions- one of the best salamis and restaurants in town
Pacific Pie Company- um hello pie.
Cacao Chocolate - a chocolate drink in a cup or I should say pure heaven in a cup.
Batch PDX - chocolates. serious business.
Salt and Straw - the darling ice cream shop of Portland and they just opened up a new location in LA!
Bent Brick - one of my favorite restaurants in Portland and the food is always delicious.
Oregon Berry - they supplied many of the vendors, for this event.  Oregon Berries are the jam.
USA Pears - 85% of the pears in the United are grown in Oregon and Washington.  Pears so happens to be Nora's favorite fruit.
Whole Foods-  grocery store loves supporting local businesses, no matter what state they are in.
Little Green Pickle- the people who make Feast Portland happen!

Want to read more about Feast and meet some other snazzy bloggers?

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Icon a Show of Portraits @ People's Gallery

I'm participating in a group show at People's Gallery, opening next week. The title for the show is Icon a Show of Portraits and I couldn't be more thrilled to participate.   The curators for this gallery work so hard to bring art into the community and they continue to inspire me with their dedication and creativity.

One of my favorite icons of all time is Alice Neel. She was a true trail blazer for women in art and in life. She was someone, that just had to make art.  There is something so admirable about someone's spirit, and is willing to do whatever it takes for the passion of their craft. Her art was something that ran so deep with in her, that it came through in her paintings.

If you have a chance to see her work in person, her energy leaps off the canvas. When her paintings are on display at the Portland Art Museum, I go visit them. When I'm in New York City, there is one that is close to the elevator on the 3rd floor at MOMA, that I visit. There is something magical about her work and her long, beautiful, brush strokes.

One of my favorite art documentaries of all time is Neel. (and it's on Netflix)  Even if you aren't an artist, you can appreciate this film. Alice's drive and spirit will inspire you to do whatever it takes to make your life the best life ever.  It chronologies her life, and her art, and how she made it.  Her sons still own her old apartment in New York City, and they use it as an office and a place to remember their mother.  

"The minute I sat in front of a canvas I was happy. Because it was a world and I could do what I liked in it."- Alice Neel

Details about the show: 
Opening Night: Sept 20th, 5-9 
Show Runs from: September 20th- October 12th.

Monday, September 15, 2014

Get Into the Groove Together & Target Giveaway

Content and/or other value provided by our partner, Target.  All the opinions are my own.
Weddings are really the best! One of the best perks about getting married is doing the wedding registry. A wedding is one of the few events, that a couple can ask for exactly what they want, because they are building and designing a life together.

Since September is just the start of fall, it's definitely a time for those home projects. The best thing about Target registry is that you can get everything you need to design and inspire your newlywed home.  After a wedding, doing fun home projects is a great way to create memorable experiences that will last a life time and get into the groove together!

I made a fun registry board around the kitchen. What brings the new family together? The kitchen, of course. I started out with these fun Dudes Cork Board Tiles to hang recipes, coupons, or photos.  Then of course I needed some organizational supplies like a Pyrex 10 piece tupperware set and a Dyson DC65 Animal Upright Vacuum.  The great thing about Target is that there things that will make the couple both extremely happy and help them groove their style.

So if you or a friend are getting married, let them know about Target registry because it is so easy to create the perfect registry.

OH and Target is giving away a $25 gift card. Yay! Enter Below!

#targetwedding #sponsered

Content and/or other value provided by our partner, Target. All opinions are my own.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Saturday, September 13, 2014

2014 Feast Portland

Feast Portland is less than a week away. I have to say, I can't wait to eat my way through the weekend. Since I am always heavily motivated by food, this is the perfect place to get nibbles and bites from yummy local places and internationally acclaimed chefs.  What more could a girl ask for?  I have my fork ready.  

Details and Links:
Dates: September 18th-21st
All of the Latest Feast News: Facebook // Instagram //Twitter

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Portland Rhododendron Gardens

Portland Rhododendron Gardens is easily one of my favorite little parks in Portland because Tim and I got married here. It's a special place, not only because we had our special day here but we used to come here for dates too.  We would just walk around the park for hours, holding hands and talking. It's truly one of my favorite hidden gems in the city because it's never really crowded, and it's like a secret garden.

We spent the morning walking around all the different lakes and streams.  The whole garden is extremely toddler and pregnant lady friendly which earns extra bonus points. There are lots of nice big wide paths and not to many hills.

There are tons of big fat ducks and bossy geese around the lakes, and they love visitors or I should say snacks.  I didn't realize this but I gave Nora a graham cracker and a goose chased us around for nearly 20 minutes.  and just for a crumb! It actually felt pretty creepy, like I was in some movie (Attack of the Birds, ring a bell?).  It really freaked me out, but once we put away our snack, we were safe.

This was such a special way to spend a morning, even if we did get chased by a naughty goose.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Painting Portland

I have really enjoyed sharing my sketchbook on this blog and in Instagram. There is something that makes me feel so much more braver as an artist, when I just put it out there. In making just 1 piece of art, there are so many different layers and ugly phases.  The best part of keeping a sketchbook is seeing and revisiting those past phases and layers.

For a long time, I was extremely self conscious about sharing my studies and sketches because the work was just not done yet. It's hard showing your work, that is half finished or just show your imperfections as a maker.  I guess I am realizing, there is something beautiful in seeing the beginnings, the in-betweens, and thoughts of something.

I have been taking a little bit of a break from painting landscapes and to be honest, I was a burnt out by them.  I have been painting them for so long, that it felt like I was struggling to find inspiration. Inspiration is everywhere but I was blocked. When I do a gallery show or get a request from a curator, the most requested paintings are doing some sort of landscape or city-scape.

 I think all I needed was a break because I'm slowly seeing some buildings pop up into my sketchbook again. I have been rediscovering bursts of city inspiration around town and it feels good.  It's the best feeling to rediscover something you love to make or do.

Friday, September 5, 2014

30 Week Bump-Date!

30 weeks! I'm getting closer to the end and I am officially into my 3rd trimester. Yay! I'm starting to need more naps again and can feel my body slowing down.  My feet are starting to feel puffy, which I think it's some sort of sign of getting ready to hatch a new baby.

This pregnancy is a lot different than Nora's and feel all around a bit healthier and have more energy, which is good! Even though, I've had morning sickness a lot this pregnancy and pregnancy is pretty awful, I don't have much to complain about.  I just feel pretty grateful, that I'm able to have another baby. There are so many women, that are not able to get pregnant or have complicated pregnancies.  I think maybe, I'm just done complaining and pregnancy is just really hard.  

The best thing about this picture is that, when Tim was taking it, he was more worried that a rattle snake would jump out of the bushes and get him.  I'm not sure if rattle snakes can jump but he seemed to think so.  (He is also afraid of house spiders) hehe.  He then later looked up, and there are no rattle snakes in Arizona but only king snakes.

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Phoenix Botanical Gardens

Hello from Arizona! Tim surprised me for the long weekend and scooped me up for a baby-moon. I think we both needed a little get away, with out the pugs and the kiddo. I love them all to pieces, but it was really nice to have a break. He thought it would be a good idea because who knows when we will be able to even get a date in, once the new baby comes in November.  So, we hopped a plane to Arizona.

I am actually pretty impressed, that he even suggested the idea and do something just us because he doesn't really do surprises. We mostly swam in the hotel pool, got fruity drinks with umbrellas and even went to the movies (Have you seen Guardians of the Galaxy, yet?), but it was the best.  Our lives are so full with so many things, that it really makes me appreciate when we can steal a moment away.

One of the days, we decided to go to the Phoenix Botanical Gardens and it was pretty beautiful, but it was freaking hot.  The gardens were just lovely, and there were so many different types of cacti and little desert animals.  There were lots of different water features, since it is smack dab in the middle of the desert and anytime I saw water, it felt like an oasis. I dunked my pregnant puffy feet in several of the fountains and loved how quiet the park was.

This vacation was just what I needed and probably Tim too! I feel so much more relaxed after this quick trip. It's funny because I realized how much more energy I have, when I don't have to chase around a toddler, but I missed her so very much.
© Erika Lee Sears