MyStoryART is a delightful, eclectic blog that passionately shares with readers and listeners, wisdom tales and art adventures in mixed media, digital collage, polymer clay, assemblages, jewelry, tutorials, thrifty art tips and techniques. Thanks for stopping by for a visit!

The Christmas Pickle

Ya'll have probably heard the cute little story around the Christmas pickle ornament before or even experienced it in your own home as a young child and adult.  Hey, just the idea that you might get an extra little gift if you are the one to find the hidden ornament in the tree is exciting no matter how old you are.



As some of you who know me well are aware, I like to do my research before I post anything on my blog or on facebook. I decided to look up the "old German tradition" of the Christmas pickle to see what I could find.  

Now I became suspicious that something might be amiss when I read that the pickle was the last ornament placed and hidden on the tree before St. Nicholas came. "Strange" I thought, "St. Nicholas comes on Dec. 6th and most Germans certainly don't have their trees up that early." Ding a ling... the suspicion bell in my head went off. 

As a younger Canadian ex-pat adult, I lived in Germany for ten years and I never remember seeing a pickle on a Christmas tree. Consequently I assumed (yes, yes) when I heard about it on this side of the pond that I had missed something. Well much to my surprise, I have discovered that this is NOT an old German tradition after all but something, it appears, may have been thought up by American marketers many moons ago and is a myth that has made the rounds Christmas after Christmas!

Well that did it for my short little blurb I was going to post today about the old German tradition of the Christmas pickle!  Hmmm I wonder what Snopes has to say about it??

If you are interested in finding out more about this myth and how it came about, here is an excellent article 


The big guy is coming down the chimney pretty soon now! Merry Christmas everyone,

Sharon...

RMR: Seven Day Forecast



You know you live in Canada when...enjoy this video from Rick Mercer, Canada's very funny Newfoundlander!!

Sidney Fine Art Show Art Pieces

Well folks I did promise I would show you what pieces made it into the Sidney Fine Art Show.  As I have mentioned in other posts, these are bookshelf boxes!  What's that you ask?  Bookshelf boxes look like little room vignettes but are meant to sit in a bookshelf among your books... rather like a surprise when you discover them.

The boxes are filled with detail and the more you look at them, the more you discover. Like the fact that Albert has his fingers crossed (well he was hoping he was right about that theory of relativity) and that the "floor" in the Scholar & Gentleman box is a vintage copy of the Book of Knowledge Index that I have had for years and years.  It was just waiting for the right art piece to come along . They are whimsical for sure but also have a serious side to them when you stop and think about what is REALLY going on within this little space.  As those who know me can attest, I like little intrigues in my art...

This first box is "A Scholar and a Gentleman"... Dr. McPherson is a world traveler lecturer who loves to share his knowledge with others...and like most professors I have known, he is not entirely neat!




This box is "It's All Relative" with Albert Einstein and is artfully modeled after his office at Princeton University.  I am a big Einstein fan and this box was done to celebrate the centennial year of the publication of Einstein's theory on relativity (1915-2015).

Now anybody who has studied ANYTHING about him will know that he had a wicked sense of humour. He was also well known for his ability to explain complex "stuff" in simple but often humorous ways. Take his theory of relativity for instance:  He once told a group of his students that understanding relativity was quite easy:  "If you sit with a beautiful girl for 2 hours, it feels like a minute BUT if you sit on a hot stove for 2 minutes, it feels like an hour.  That's relativity."




Have a great weekend,

See you soon.  Keep on arting...

Sharon

The Bewitching Hour is Upon Us...

This past week I finished Maltilda the Classy Witch, a collector art doll who stands just 8" tall (well, excluding her fancy hat).  What fun she was to make... and she turned out just the way I saw her in my mind... a lovely, weathered face full of wrinkles and crevices and a hook nose that only a witch could love!  Her spell book has many pages filled with all sorts of witchy delights.  If you look closely at her chin, you will see a glittering "diamond" embeded in her chin "dimple".  Look at her hat...and you will see a bat that actually moves when you touch it... all that is missing is the spooky music... Halloween is just around the corner.




If you live in the Victoria area and are attending the Sidney Fine Art show this weekend, I will be doing an art doll sculpting demo on Saturday between 5 and 7.  Drop by and you will be able to see Maltilda in person along with two other collector art dolls, Jock, the Scots Curler and Monsieur Pierre, the French waiter.  People are surprised when they actually see these little people... first at the size they are (much smaller than they imagined) and the difference in depth perception seeing them "in person".  They are pretty darn sweet if I do say so myself...GRIN

Hope to see you there,

Sharon

My Little "Guys" Make it to the "Big Time"..

I had some wonderful, exciting news the other day ... two of the roomboxes (although I call my boxes, bookshelf boxes as they are meant to sit in a bookshelf among books... rather like a surprise when you discover them...) made it into one of the premier juried art shows, the Sidney Fine Arts Show, here on Vancouver Island in mid October.

Out of over 1000 pieces that were adjudicated for the show, they took 400... 2 of which are mine.  I have never seen any miniatures/small stuff that have made it into the show before (other than one other of mine that made it in last year but it wasn't a bookshelf box) so I am over the moon!

Once the show begins, I will post more photos (the show organizers don't like it when you spoil the surprises awaiting folks who come to the show).  I have to admit that the photos don't really do the boxes justice...they are a lot smaller than they look in a photo. 

The other day a friend who had dropped by for a visit began "studying" them.  She had seen some of the preliminary photos I took along the way and said, "Boy, you are right. You just don't notice all of the tiny details in a photo (the devil is in the details and it is the details that absolutely make the pieces come to life) and photos just can't show the size and depth of the 3D effect!".  I totally agree. However, I think you can certainly get an overall impression of them nonetheless.  That being said, here are a couple of photos to give you a sense of what I sculpted and created...and yes, it was a lot of work, took a lot of time but was so much fun watching it all come to life...

This first photo is Dr. McPherson, the English Professor who is a visiting Oxford Don... he has traveled the world and now loves to just sit around and share his vast knowledge of literature and the world with his students... in the bookshelf box, he is surrounded by over 60 miniature books and of course his suitcase and satchel...



You recognize this guy below, don't you?  Who could miss him with his wild hair?  I am an Einstein fan... if you ever want an Einstein quote, let me know, I have hundreds of them. This bookbox was made to commemorate the Centennial of the publication of Einstein's theory on relativity (1915-2015).  The bookbox is an artfully rendered version of Einsteins office at Princeton.  Einstein had a delightful sense of humour and some of his quotes are quite insightful... especially the one about the constant state of mess on his desk:  "If a cluttered desk is the sign of a cluttered mind, what then is an empty desk a sign?"  Yes, indeed!  I will leave my desk in a mess from here on in...GRIN




The Sidney Fine Arts show runs from Oct. 16-18 at the Mary Winspear Centre in Sidney, B.C. (Elizabeth May country...*) so if you are in the area, drop by to take a look at some wonderful art from Vancouver Island artisans.

Stay tuned... photos will be forthcoming...

Cheers,
Sharon

* P.S.  Who is Elizabeth May you ask?  Well she is one effervescent, fiery, and very smart female politician who is the leader of her party (the Greens) currently running for office in her district, Sidney/Gulf Islands, in our on-going, long drawn out, (and for me) totally boring Canadian election.  She lives in Sidney and is one cool lady!!