Tag Archives: Art


28 Jul

Sunday Memories

Judy Wills

I don’t have much “taste” when it comes to artwork.  I suppose I don’t have an “eye” for quality artwork, but, as the saying goes:  I know what I like, and what I don’t like.

Consequently, Fred and I have gathered artwork for our house throughout our married life that we like and enjoy.  It might not be what a lot of people would call quality, but it suits us and we are pleased with it.

I remember once, when Fred and I and our girls went to Washington D.C. for a visit. One of the places we visited was the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, as part of the Smithsonion Museums. As we walked through the museum, I was appalled at some of the paintings we saw there.  With respect to those who appreciate that type of art – my thought was that some of those artists had to be on some kind of hallucinating drug to see life that way.  Bizarre! After spending quite a few hours there, we all decided that we would not include that museum in our touring of D.C. again.  

When Fred and I (and Karen as a baby) lived in Wiesbaden, Germany, many starving artists would come around the American housing and attempt to sell their wares.  One came to our door once.  The artist had quite a few of her paintings – all the same theme but in different color tones.  I really liked the one she had in blue tones.  But her price was way out of our budget.  We kept telling her, we were very sorry but we just couldn’t afford that painting.  She kept lowering her price.  We kept resisting.  She finally, in desperation, gave us her final price – one that we really could afford. And so we purchased the painting from her.  It still hangs in our house, and we enjoy it.

While not really “artwork” per se, there is another one we have hanging that we enjoy.  It took me many years to get framed and hung, but we like it.  We had visited the Gutenberg Museum while in Germany, and I had purchased this copy of a page of the Gutenberg Bible.  I had it framed and hung in Fred’s office at the church here in Orlando.  It now hangs in our guest bedroom.

Another type of “artwork” is a cross stitch work that a friend of ours in Virginia did for us.  I had seen her do one for a friend in our church who was moving, and asked her to do one for us, which she did.  She was very talented with this – something I can’t do – and so I think of her every time I see it, or dust the frame.  She’s gone home to be with the Lord now, so it is very special to me.

When our Aunt Jessie died, and we were going through her things to see what we each would like to have of hers, we came upon an Oriental “scroll” that was just beautiful.  Much as I thought I would like to have it, I had no idea what I would do with it, or where I would hang in on a wall.  Fortunately, my brother, Bill, said he would like it.  He took it, had it framed, and it is hanging in the entryway of their house. It is stunning.  I’m so glad he took it – it’s exactly in the right place. And it is, indeed, artwork.

Thanks to DiVoran Lites

Judy is living in Central Florida with her retired U.S. Air Force husband of 50+ years. Born in Dallas, Texas, she grew up in the Southwestern United States.She met her husband at their church, where he was attending the university in her town. After college and seminary, he entered the Air Force, and their adventures began.They lived in eight of our United States, and spent six years in Europe, where their oldest daughter was born. She was a stay-at-home mom for many years .

  Judy has always been involved with music, both playing the piano and singing. Always interested in exercise, she was an aerobic dancing instructor, as well as a piano teacher for many years, and continues to faithfully exercise at home.

After moving to Central Florida, she served as a church secretary for nearly nine years.Her main hobby at this point in time is scanning pictures and 35mm slides into the computer. She also enjoys scrapbooking.She and her husband have two married daughters and four grandchildren, including grandtwins as well as a great-grandson. She and her husband enjoy the Disney parks as often as possible.

Pencil Sharpeners

19 Feb

My Take

DiVoran Lites



I hear they have

Electric pencil sharpeners now

Bzzz and the point is made

When I was bored in grade-school

To amuse myself

I walked up front to the pencil sharpener

With my yellow number two.

Didn’t know there was another kind

Of pencil in the world

Nowadays I love to art

I have rainbows and lollipops of color in stick form

Inktense, watercolor, wax pastels,

Crayons, and colored pencils

Too many art supplies

But that’s because

Artists are art-store junkies

All my color sticks need to be

Sharpened periodically

I have many hand sharpeners

But for a tough job such as

A colored pencil with

A broken off head

I open to the secret on the linen closet wall

And hand grind the wood away

To expose the purple underneath

For stroking highlights into books,

Especially Holy Bibles on gossamer thin

Paper with light-catching golden edges.

Memories of New Mexico~Part 2

26 Feb


Judy Wills



 I have some mementos of New Mexico, and I would like to share them with you. Some of the Native Americans that lived in the pueblos out and around Albuquerque, made some wonderful black pots. I’m sure that originally, they were actually used within the house for some household chore, but these little ones are just for sitting on a shelf, and to be enjoyed by all. At least I’ve always enjoyed them. However, they were quite expensive, and I was unable to purchase any.

My wonderful sister-in-law, DiVoran, had this little pot sitting on her shelf for as long as I can remember. We made a trade one time – she got some gold earrings, and I got her little black pot! It was an even-trade for both of us.



And Fred’s parents had this black pot, that I admired so much. So when they passed away, I was able to inherit the pot, and have enjoyed it ever since.




They both sit on a shelf, along with this adorable brass road runner that I also inherited from Fred’s parents. They had him a long time, and I admired him for all that time. He appealed to me because the road runner is the New Mexico state bird.




Some newer art forms from New Mexico also have appealed to me. The last time we were in Albuquerque (Fred’s brother still lives there), I purchased this little glass cactus. I thought it was really cute – and it is almost a prickly as a real cactus!




For some reason, Kokopelli has become a favorite Native American icon of mine.

I just think he’s cute – and he’s playing a musical instrument. From Wikipedia, I gleaned the following:

Kokopelli is a fertility deity, usually depicted as a humpbacked flute player (often with feathers or antenna-like protrusions on his head), who has been venerated by some Native American cultures in the Southwestern United States. Like most fertility deities, Kokopelli presides over both childbirth and agriculture. He is also a trickster god and represents the spirit of music.

This little statuette sits on one of my shelves for me to enjoy. I have forgotten what this type of metal-work is called.




I also have another type of that art work – it is a turtle. I saw this the last time we were in Albuquerque, and it appealed to me. I think it’s cute.




Those of you old enough, and interested in car racing – especially the Indianapolis 500 – might remember the Unser brothers. They were New Mexico boys, and back in the 1960’s-1980’s had an auto shop in Albuquerque, designed for maintaining race cars. Al Unser won that race four times, his brother, Bobby won it three times, and Al Unser, Jr. won it twice! You might say it was in the family’s blood! There is a Unser Racing Museum in Los Ranchos de Albuquerque that is open to any and all.



Credit Google search and Rita Wechter

Teddy and Praise Dancer

7 Dec

My Take

DiVoran Lites

Author, Poet and Artist


My pal Onisha and I sometimes get into writing letters as they were written earlier in our lives. Now they seem old-fashioned because of the way we meandered when we wrote them, but since it’s almost Christmastime, we thought you might like another glimpse at the way things were.


Here are a couple of our old friends. Teddy is on your left and Praise Dancer on your right. I imagine you figured that out.

Teddy and Praise Dancer


Onisha: Adorable!!  Are these friends at your house?

DiVoran: Yes, they live in the scriptorium. Mother crocheted Teddy’s clothes. I’ve had him since I was five. That makes him sixty-two years old, and he’s an excellent listener.

Onisha: I wondered who crocheted Teddy’s outfit. How wonderful that you have been able to keep Teddy and his clothes all these years without loving him to pieces.

It’s wonderful to have him. Mother crocheted two outfits when she was here one year, so his clothes aren’t vintage. Mother could just look at something and crochet it, but she never figured out how to follow a pattern. Crocheting was the way my mom kept her sanity. We can all use a pastime that will do that for us. She made decorative pillow covers, granny patterned Afghans, and lap robes for the nursing home. When she was ninety, she crocheted butterflies and attached magnets so you could put them on your refrigerator. All friends and family had something she had made, but only Kewpie Doll has this little set.



Onisha: People like that have an inner eye that can see how things go together. It is a gift. What is the story behind Praise Dancer?

DiVoran: You are so kind to ask. Sure, Praise Dancer has a story.

When Julia Cameron wrote another book after “The Artist’s Way,” I rushed to buy it. One of her assignments in “The Vein of Gold,” was to, “make a creativity doll.” That’s how I got Praise Dancer. With a few items from the Craft Department she became something besides a cotton body, curly hair from a package, and a bit of tulle and paint. She and Teddy have been good friends for about twenty years. Poor Raggedy Ann used to be Teddy’s best friend but she now lives in the old doll cradle with the “Winnie the Pooh” gang. Alas, although Praise Dancer doesn’t have a heart she is still a sweet girl and she loves the Lord. I suspect she dances for Him when we are sleeping.


Onisha: Praise Dancer does not need a heart on the outside, it shines on her face

DiVoran: Here’s Teddy and Raggedy Ann, they were so glad to have a visit during the photo shoot.

Teddy and Rageddy Ann


DiVoran: Thank you for saying Praise Dancer was loving as well as beautiful.


Painting Flowers

25 May

My Take

DiVoran Lites

Author, Poet and Artist

 Paint comes in wondrous hues, Reds,

Be One Spark!

20 Apr

On the Porch

Onisha Ellis



We had the pleasure of attending One Spark this weekend and I am here to tell you, creativity is alive and well in Jacksonville, Florida.  The whole downtown was awash with ideas, inventions and art; creators were eager to tell you their dreams as they all vied for your vote to capture a portion of the $250,000 pot of money.

Our daughter, Rebekah Lyn volunteered to take a couple of two-hour shifts at the Biblio Connection booth in the spacious Jacksonville Public Library. The “creator” Betty Poole collected books and videos from Indie authors and beautifully displayed them. She lives in Jacksonville and dreams of turning an old building into a center for authors to come together to write, brainstorm and interact with readers. She even envisions a future expansion that would include artists in other mediums. Imagine what a boon to the local Indie author community to be able to socialize while choosing a cover artist and an editor.

Businesses downtown opened their doors to the creators and we roamed the streets collecting cards from the creators to use for voting. My favorite venue was the sixth floor of the Sun Trust building.

One artist who caught my eye was Robert Adelman. His work is dark yet compelling and I could easily see his art as book covers for the horror and fantasy writers. I mentioned this avenue to him and his response was that he really wanted exposure. If you would like to check him out click here.

The other art that captured my imagination was Beyond the Facade .The artist is a photographer who enlarges photos of nature and covers the façades of abandoned buildings. He chose outdoor photographs of the local area to blend in with the cityscape.

Of course it was much more than art. There were portable solar panels, apps galore, people seeking funding for documentaries, a refrigerator barista, urban gardens and even someone seeking funding for a shrimp and grits food truck (that got my vote, the shrimp were de-licious!)

I can’t end this post without offering a huge thank you to Betty Poole of Biblio Connection. She put in a lot of time preparing for One Spark as well as manning the booth Wednesday through Sunday. Betty is not an author but loves to support the Indie author community. A lot more people know about Indie authors thanks to her passion to help. If you are an author, consider joining her at Biblio Connection as she works to build an interactive community.

Rebekah Lyn at the Biblio Connection booth

Rebekah Lyn at the Biblio Connection booth



Our Trip to Italy Part 2

13 Mar

                                                                                                                                                                Bill Lites


After breakfast at the Flut Bar the next morning, we took the city tram to see Leonardo da Vinci’s fresco of the Last Supper at the Santa Maria delle Grazie.  They were still working on the five-year restoration of the painting, and were meticulously removing centuries of soot and grime.   DiVoran really enjoyed finding out how the fresco had originally been painted, and now seeing how the restoration process worked in detail.


Then it was on to explore the many shops in the beautiful indoor Gallera Vittorio Emenuele Mall, and to have lunch at the American Bar Ristorante there.  This is where we first witnessed “The Italian Coffee Break.”  It seems that the Italian men would come into their favorite ristorante in twos and threes, dressed in their business suits, overcoats and fedoras, walk up to the espresso bar, and order their coffee.  It came in tiny cups, into which they would stir in sugar and then throw the entire cup down their throats in one gulp, pay and be gone before we knew what was happening.  We figured they were on their way home for their afternoon “sonnellino” (nap).


Our Kodak moment for the day was one that DiVoran saw and wished we had a video camera to capture the entire scene.   It was of a young woman with her two small daughters in the Duomo.  DiVoran said all three wore wool coats like she had worn in the 40’s.  The beautiful mother helped the little girls select candles and light them.  The littlest one, who couldn’t have been more than three, started to sing “Happy Birthday” in Italian, but her mother gently hushed her.  All the while, the candle flames lit their small faces and made their large brown eyes glow with excitement and wonderment.


We headed for Venice the next morning with a 3-hour train ride on one of Italy’s 1st class Europe Rail  high-speed trains through the country side from Milan.  Marcia picked us up at the train station in Venice and showed us some of the main attractions of Venice including the San Giovanni E San Padio, Santa Maria Glorosa Dei Frari and Scuala Di San Rocco churches.


We had lunch at the Bora Bora Ristorante with Marsha, and two of her fellow Disney cast members.  After lunch we strolled along the Grand Canal to the famous Rialto Bridge, where we shopped the many shops located within the bridge.


Continuing on with our mini-tour, next we visited the beautiful St. Mark’s Basilica, known for its unique Italian Gothic and Byzantine architecture.  This Patriarchal Cathedral Basilica of Saint Mark is the church of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Venice, and was completed in 1071 AD.  This famous structure is rumored to house the relics of St. Mark the Evangelist, which were stolen from their original resting place in Alexandria, Egypt by Venetian merchants, and brought to Venice in 828 AD.  The adventure is depicted in the 13th-century mosaic above the door farthest on the left of the front entrance of the Basilica.  What a magnificent experience that was, with the many and varied mosaic creations throughout the entire edifice.


After leaving St. Mark’s we caught a water-bus for a quick tour of the Grand Canal, on the way back to the train station and Marcia’s car.  From there, it was a short 18,5 km drive to Marsha’s apartment, on the outskirts of Mogliano Veneto, met her landlords and to finish the day with a fabulous Italian dinner.  After that, we were ready for bed, and what a bed it was.  But, you will have to wait for Part 3 to find out what I mean, so don’t go too far away.

—–To Be Continued—–

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