Art Lotto 4

Art Lotto returned this year to Harrisonburg after a year hiatus. Several things about Art Lotto hold true for me each year.

  1. The organizers outdo themselves every year with their organization, events leading up to and including the art opening, and general enthusiasm for the experience.
  2. I am overly ambitious, wait too long to start and somehow manage to pull it off in the nick of time, which only reinforces my instinct to procrastinate the next time.

At the Luck of the Draw event in March, I chose Zach Sensabaugh and he actually drew my name as well. With 50 artists participating, the odds of that happening were incredibly low. Being a fairly busy person, it was great having to only coordinate with one person to work on this project. Zach and I met at the Golden Pony to get to know each other and we discovered a shared love for all things outdoors, hiking, camping, etc. He told me a bear story that will keep me from sleeping alone on the ground without a tent for years to come. Zach had a list of questions for me to help him create a perfume as his portrait of me. A perfume! How cool is that? After doing some abstract embroidering for the 6x6x30 show in March, I had decided to do a solid embroidery portrait for Art Lotto. I photographed Zach that day and created a background of hemlocks for his portrait, his favorite tree. I purchased about 50 different colors of embroidery floss and got to work. Or at least that's what I should have done...as usual, I got all of my materials together and couldn't bring myself to start.

Embroidery floss for days

Embroidery floss for days

Luckily, this project was very transportable which allowed me to work on it during road trips to Ohio, back and forth to Red Wing Roots Festival, and anywhere I could get away with working on it in public.
Some process shots...

Stitching detail

Stitching detail

And the finished piece...

Zach 12 x 12 | embroidery on fabric

Zach

12 x 12 | embroidery on fabric

Zach gave me a tester sample of his perfume and he pretty much nailed it. It has a lot of natural, outdoorsy scents including cedar and citrus undertones. I told my mom it has a really strong scent when you first spray it and then after a bit of time it softens and is really nice. She said "that sounds about right." Hmmm....

At least this year I have a pretty legitimate reason for my procrastination as there were a few other things going on. Like marrying the love of my life. I'll leave you with a few shots from our wedding in June.

Photo by Rebekah Budnikus

Photo by Rebekah Budnikus

Of course when you marry an amazing chef, you have to make all the food (feta, mint. and watermelon skewers). And the invitations (background painted by Jon & I, mountains by Jon, hand lettered by Rhoda). And the centerpieces (mini trees growing in our backyard).

Of course when you marry an amazing chef, you have to make all the food (feta, mint. and watermelon skewers).

And the invitations (background painted by Jon & I, mountains by Jon, hand lettered by Rhoda).

And the centerpieces (mini trees growing in our backyard).

Vegan, raw passion fruit and chocolate cheesecakes. Photos by Sandy King.

Vegan, raw passion fruit and chocolate cheesecakes. Photos by Sandy King.

Windchimes in memory of my sister SaraLisa and Jon's brother Matt. Fabric garland created during a support group I co-led at my work at the Collins Center. Photo by Rebekah Budnikus

Windchimes in memory of my sister SaraLisa and Jon's brother Matt. Fabric garland created during a support group I co-led at my work at the Collins Center. Photo by Rebekah Budnikus

Photo by Rebekah Budnikus. Amazing setting thanks to our dear friends Bob & Keri Sue Brunk.

Photo by Rebekah Budnikus. Amazing setting thanks to our dear friends Bob & Keri Sue Brunk.

And finally, hiking on our honeymoon in Iceland. Go there ASAP. You will not be disappointed.

And finally, hiking on our honeymoon in Iceland. Go there ASAP. You will not be disappointed.

Coming up in November, a solo show at Blue Ridge Architects, created from their discarded samples. Then in December, a solo show at Pale Fire Brewing. In the meantime, back to school! I am beginning a masters program in Restorative Justice through EMU's Center for Justice and Peacebuilding this fall and am looking forward to an enriching and challenging experience over the next few years.