Lily and the Rock

My new neighbor Bob has this great dog named Lily. He moved into the house at the end of the dead end road we live on, which has almost no yard. So I told him Lily could play in mine anytime.

The other day I looked out the window and saw Bob watching Lily play with something. I couldn’t tell what it was, but it looked like she was having a blast. I went outside to check it out and join in the fun.

It turns out that Lily is in love with a rock. Not any rock, just this one particular rock. She could care less about any other rock.

When Bob moved in he brought her rock with him and put it under the coffee table. Lily has spent months laying near the table with her head on her paws staring longingly at the rock. This is the first time in 6 months he brought it outside so she coud play with it.

 

I honestly have no idea how I made half of the second film film in slow motion. But I think it’s pretty cool.

 

 

Best Olympia art event: Procession of the Species

 

Earth Day is not over where I live. In fact, we are just warming up.
My favorite event here in Olympia, Washington is the annual Procession of the Species, a giant, makeshift artistic homage to the flora, fauna, and natural elements of our world. procession of the species
Months before the week of Earth Day, a warehouse space opens downtown to begin construction for the parade. Individuals, classrooms, girl scout troops, faith communities…basically everyone in town crowds into the warehouse to get involved. And so begins the creative process – costume making workshops, choreographing dance routines and marching bands, and constructing costumes.
Oh the costume construction! They range from simple painted cereal box animal masks to the elaborate large-scale segmented paper mache creatures that serve in lieu of floats as the parade’s main attractions. Since nothing motorized is allowed, the giant creatures are made with flexible parts and worn by groups of people–15′ elephants, dinosaurs, dragons, and even giant insects have romped through the Olympia streets in 20 years of “The Procession” tradition.

zebras olympia

I usually attend the Procession as a spectator. People expect me to be in the parade  because I’m a working artist, and I creates a lot of animal art (I have over a hundred designs of wall clocks, alarm clocks, night lights, cards, and magnets featuring critters), but I so look forward to witnessing the parade every year that I don’t mind sitting at the sidelines. And the sense of community and joy in the air when the whole town comes out to play is something I just love to be a part of.
If you happen to be in the Olympia, Washington area, do not miss the revelry!
This is an event to remind us that our home is a place teeming with precious creatures, and we are responsible to all of them to keep the earth livable and beautiful.
procession

Actress Patty Duke visits the Craftspeople at Pike Place Market

Having grown up watching her TV show, when I booked Patty Duke to ring the bell at the market I was thrilled. Like many of us, I have seen The Miracle Worker, for which she won an Oscar, many times. And of course, I’ve seen her in many other films and TV shows over the years. But as fun as I imagined the day might be, I never dreamed it could be as special as it really was.

Patty Duke (whose real name is Anna) is still absolutely beautiful, and she and her husband Mike are two of the most genuine, loving, fun people you’ll ever meet. The couple met when Anna was filming A Time to Triumph, the true story of a woman helicopter pilot. Mike, who was a drill sergeant at the time, was hired as a consultant to teach her how to salute, march, etc. and in the process they fell in love. They have been married for 28 years, and they both exude a combination of warmth, humor and kindness that is rare to find.

Patty at roll call, wearing the fabulous hat given to her by Goldie of Lidwear

Patty at roll call, wearing the fabulous hat given to her by Goldie of Lidwear

What not everyone knows about Anna is that while we were all at home happily watching her on TV and in movies, she was enduring a difficult & traumatic childhood. And on top of all the trauma she experienced in her personal life, in 1982 she was also diagnosed as bi-polar. She has since become a passionate advocate, author, speaker and educator on mental health issues. (My brother is a psychiatrist and when he heard I’d be meeting Anna, he called to make sure I know what an amazing woman she is. He told me that he feels deeply indebted to her on behalf of his patients, and what a difference her work and voice has made for so many.)
As I took Mike and Anna on a tour of the market, I watched with admiration as Anna looked into the eyes of every person who approached her, and greeted them as if they were already a friend – whether a fan of her TV Show, movies, or books, or someone who has dealt with mental illness in their own life and knew of her advocacy work. She gave out hugs that clearly came from her heart, and her sparkly personality and openness left each person she met glowing.

Actress Patty Duke Pike Market SeattlePatty Duke by Pam CorwinPatty Duke with Paper Scissors Rock and Pike  Place Market artists

At one point, I told Anna & Mike about a dear friend at the market who is bi-polar had hoped to meet her but couldn’t make it that day. Her husband died recently and our community is worried about her.  Anna listened with clear concern and both she and Mike simply said “Call her.” So I dialed the phone and Anna took it and walked off to give her support and sage words of advice in private. Our friend was blown away by the kindness and generosity of this amazing woman.

After Anna rang the bell, a small group of us went out to breakfast. What a lovely time it was! We were joined by Lori Ness, of Northwest Prime Radio (who is the person who put me in touch with Anna), Mary Kay Sherwood of Sherwood Silkscreen, and Kat Allen of Symbols in Art.

Mike made me laugh all morning.

Mike made me laugh all morning.

After breakfast so many people wanted to give Anna and Mike gifts and thank them for coming that it took us two hours to get through the market.

Patty Duke and artists have breakfast

Mel Dofredo of Villanueva Arts is still talking about the wonderful, heartfelt conversation he had with Anna.

Mel Dofredo of Villanueva Arts is still talking about the wonderful, heartfelt conversation he had with Anna.

screen print art at Pike Market with Patty Duke

Sarah Porter of Saragrapics

Seattle textile artist and Patty Duke

Sheila Mead of Gypsy Wings Textiles  shared her work with Anna.

I never expected to meet two such down to earth people and make new friends that day. But these two are in my heart (and I hope my life) forever.

If you want to know more about Anna’s journey, I recommend you read her best seller, Call Me Anna. If if you or anyone you love lives with bipolar disorder, I  also highly recommend her second book, Brilliant Madness: Living with Manic Depressive Illness.

Anna and Mike will be at the Hollywood autograph show the 12th and 13th of April, in LA. http://www.hollywoodshow.com/main.php

Anna will be speaking in Kadima, Michigan on Thursday, May 8th

Anna will be attending a screening of The Miracle Worker in Omaha, Nebraska on May 23

Duluth Superior Film Festival, May 28th to the 31st

And she will be speaking in Connecticut on June 6th at the Crowne Plaza Hotel near Middletown, CT

Follow Anna on Facebook 

New York Times Bestselling Author Garth Stein at Pike Place Market

On March 1st I was lucky enough to host Garth Stein the author of The Art of Racing in the Rain when he rang the bell to start our day at Pike Place Market, in Seattle.

If you haven’t read The Art of Racing in the Rain, you’re missing out. It’s a fabulous book, and was a New York Times bestseller for 156 weeks.  The story is told from a dog’s point of view. You‘ll fall in love with Enzo, who believes in the Mongolian legend that a dog who is prepared will be reincarnated in his next life as a human.

garth stein at pike place

Before he rang the bell, Garth told us all a story about his sister who once sold her art at the market.  On days when business was slow, she’d make origami cranes out of dollar bills and put them on her table on sale for $1.00 each. One day two women paused to look at them, shook their heads, declared them an overpriced rip-off and walked away. That got a huge laugh from the crowd.

 Garth Stein and artists gift shopping

Garth is a fascinating person. He was a race car driver himself and co-produced an Academy Award winning short film, The Lunch Date. And he is as wonderful a human being as you’d expect after reading his book. Kristin Schwartz of Silver Cherry jewelry greeted him with me, and after we showed him the underbelly of the market and told him a couple of legendary market stories Kristen showed him around the Market and took him to our famed mini-donut stand for a treat.

She then escorted him to meet the many market fans who had brought books for him to sign and wanted to gift him with their art.

garth stein art of racing the rain

Garth has a new book coming out. A Sudden Light, will be published on
September 30, 2014. And great news for kids: Garth’s children’s picture book, Enzo Races in the Rain, will be published in November of this year.

Garth is also one of the founders of Seattle7Writers, a collective of Pacific Northwest authors creating connections between writers, readers, librarians and booksellers to foster and support a passion for the written word. They are hosting a Book Club Brunch at Mount Baker Community Center on June 21, 2014.  Keynote speaker is Daniel James Brown (The Boys in the Boat).  See www.Seattle7Writers.org/events for information.

Insert Movie (on dropbox) here

Follow Garth on Facebook and Twitter 

To be sure you get all of Garth’s news sign up for his newsletter.

So tiny its hard to believe these are real!

tiny knitted socks
Check out these amazing miniature works of art by Indiana knitter Althea Crome! Yes, these incredible little fairy garments are actually hand-knitted, with 70 stitches to the inch. (For perspective- normal scale knitting might have about 4 stitches to an inch) I love them! Not only are they adorably tiny and intricately detailed, but Althea packs so much expression into such eensy-weensy packages. The socks above tell a story of the artist’s childhood move from the city to rural life.

FrogAlarmfrog wall clock
I have always loved tiny things- dollhouse furniture, miniature toys, and especially miniature works of art. I have a number of tiny treasure in my house that I have collected over the years. They adorn my windowsills and shelves, find little corners to sit in, or they get their home on a teeny-tiny things shelf in my guest room. My favorite are the ones I have acquired from other artists at the Market or trade shows.
Naturally, my love of tininess also shows up in my own creative work.flying pig wall clock progress

When I create original paintings to become wall clocks, I paint them actual size. This means that a lot of the tiny details that I like to include have to be done with very small brushes and I have to keep a steady and patient hand. Often I do a little bit at a time, and then come back later, because my hand gets tired.

For the magnets and alarm clocks, the originals are reduced in size. Many of the alarm clocks are made from the same original as the wall clocks so if you, like me, are partial to miniature art, check out the alarm clocks gallery to find the 2″ version of many of the most popular wall clock designs.

dog clock kids room

Dancing Dog Wall Clock

 

2" square mini alarm clock

2″ square mini alarm clock

 

The gem magnets also feature micro images, such as the Seattle themed magnet set you see here.

Seattle theme refrigerator magnets decorative

Alan White tours the Pike Place Market

Saturday December 28th was a really fun and special day at the Market in Seattle. We were blessed to have Alan White, the drummer from Yes, as our guest bell ringer.Alan White, Pam Corwin, Pike Place Market, Seattle

The roll call bell is rung each morning at 9am. It calls out to the crafts community to let them know that roll call is beginning and to be ready to choose our market space for the day. This is a longstanding tradition to the local producers who not only hand make their products, but also set up and break down their “shops” each day.

Alan White, Pike Place Market, Bell Ringer

When they arrive in the morning, guest bell ringers get a “behind the scenes” tour and the insiders story, from how we jury in, to what our daily lives are like; including set up, break down, the daily challenges we face, the strength of our community/family and much more. This is the little known story of what we really do and who we really are.

0059_WhitePPM
Alan and his lovely wife Gigi arrived with two friends (professional photographers, Jerry and Lois Levin) that cold morning, coffee in hand. I invited Dean Moller, a fabulous artisan who makes cigar box guitars and amps, to join us on our behind the scenes, ‘insider’ market tour. He showed us all one of his guitars and did a demo. I wish you could have seen their faces light up when they saw that guitar, and then the gasp when he pulled out a tiny cigar box amp!  They all just loved it and really hit it off.
Alan White and Dean with cigarbox guitar
I invited Dan Schmidt to do the intro. Dan’s parents, Sandi and Richard make ocarinas. Richard requested that Dan do Alan’s intro and two days later, Richard died in  his sleep. The entire market was in shock, as Richard was a kind, funny, amazing man and was loved by everyone. I checked back with Dan to see if he still wanted to do it and found out Richard & he listened to Yes together all the time. Dan learned their songs and played them in several bands as a teen and Richard had wanted them to do the intro together. Dan said it would mean a lot to do it, and it meant a lot to our community to honor Richard’s request.
Pike Place Market, Alan White, Yes

Dan’s entire family came to the market that morning. Dan wore one of Richard’s hats (Richard was never without a hat). I told Alan and Gigi this story before they met, and they were both  touched. After roll call, Dan took them on a tour, they went out to breakfast together, and then Alan asked to meet the whole Schmidt family.  Sandi gave Alan an ocarina and the family gave him a lesson,  and Alan signed a drumstick for Dan. It was a wonderful day, and Alan and Gigi, were gracious, funny, and warm.0108_WhitePPM0121_WhitePPM

The special day was all documented in these beautiful photos by photographer Jerry Levin.

0068_WhitePPM

Don’t miss Alan White at Play it Forward at the Neptune, February 9th. It’s a fabulous benefit to support music education in Washington State, and you can read about and buy tickets here.

Pam Corwin, Alan White, Pike Place Market, Play it Forward

I thanked Alan by giving him my Pike Place Market wall clock, which can be viewed and ordered on my website.

Check out the shoe lover alarm clock’s action in this video


I recently shot some videos of my alarm clocks in action.
This clock is called “If the Shoe Fits…”, and its a best-selling gift for the shoe-addicted among us. The larger clock face image is this wacky whimsical sexy shoe, and the little second-hand one is the classic red high heel.
It is very hard to describe how the the travel alarm clocks work to people who haven’t seen it. The videos shows one in action.  Basically, the miniature image that is the second hand and rotates magically around the decorated clockface. You can’t see any hands or wires, so the tiny painting appears to just be floating as it ticks off the seconds. (the way it works shall remain a trade secret!)

3 more days until Small Business Saturday!

 

 

Only THREE days left to go!
Pike Place Seattle Christmas
If you are nearby, I hope you will come by Pike Place this Saturday, November 30th. It is such a magical place to be during the holidays, and such a perfect place to show your love for the local people who make Seattle work- artists, musicians, restauranteurs, and local retailers.
Not only is it Small Business Saturday, in fact, but it is the annual holiday kickoff at the market. A few of the fun happenings on Saturday:

Christmas Gem magnets homemade

My Christmas magnet set makes a great stocking stuffer.

  • FREE pictures with Santa in front of the famous Market clock and sign. (These make for wonderfully iconic Seattle holiday mailers for your loved ones far and wide…also a nice way of showing that you are supporting local shops with your dollars. Do not miss!

 

  • Kids’ cookie decorating party in the Market’s new Atrium Kitchen!

 

  • Holiday tree lighting, and lighting of the Market at 5 pm.
peace dove alarm clock painted

Peace on earth.

  • Great Figgy Pudding Caroling Competition: Comedy and choral performance face-off! 1-4:30pm under the Market clock.

Seattle theme refrigerator magnets decorative

Seattle magnets, for the Seattle fridge. 

  • Pick out a freshly-cut Christmas tree, holiday wreaths, and garlands direct from your local farmers.
  • Warm up with hot local apple cider, famous Pike Place hot mini doughnuts, award-winning chowder and of course, coffee!

Magnets for all the coffee lovers, from the birthplace of Seattle coffee!

Magnets for all the coffee lovers, from the birthplace of Seattle coffee!

  • Come find me in the craft day stalls! I have colorful, affordable, and useful gifts for all kinds of people on your list made from my paintings.
    Gem magnets, miniature alarm clocks, colorful wall clocks, night lights, bookmarks, and greeting cards. I have gifts suitable for stocking stuffers, gift exchange parties, secret santa events, hanukkah, and christmas.
    My designs are diverse, appealing to kids and great-grandparents, and everyone in between. You will find something to match the loves of many people on your list, and go with themes of decor in rooms in your house.
    Not to mention there are more than 200 other artists and crafts people with special and unique treasures for sale in the craft day stalls, a pillar of Seattle small business and arts community for the past 40 years.
    Come down. Bring your kids. Bring your friends. The Market on this day is an unforgettable experience.

 

7 Day Countdown to Small Business Saturday!

Small Business Saturday is November 30th,  just one week away, and there is no better place to enjoy it than with us at the Pike Place Market in Seattle! At Pike Place you’ll find hundreds of artists, local farmers, and great places to eat.
I am located in the craft day stalls, and like all the craft vendors, our location moves around from day to day. Just walk through the craft day stalls and you should see my display…I try to make it eye-catching so I am easy to find.
shopsmall banner paper scissors rock handmade gifts
Small Business Saturday is an event to promote holiday shopping at local small businesses around the US. Many small businesses in neighborhoods across the country are participating, and there are some great promotions.
For example, if you have an American Express card, you can get $10 just for shopping at a small business on November 30th. Online counts too, so if you can’t make it to Pike Market to see us, come visit the website.

9 animal pictures, then and now…(My teenage art)

Since I am a clock-maker, my work is involved in marking the passage of time. Many things change, of course, as time passes, but other things endure throughout our lives.
I went through a phase when I was about 17 of doodling different critters with this ornate crazy detail. I still have a few of these sketches, and it is fun to get them out and look at them.
My style is pretty different now, but I can see some similarities. I think its interesting to see what of my art work has changed and what remains over the years, emerging again and again. A few things seem to pop out here…
For one, my love of the colorful in art. You can see that I’m still in the habit of inking lots of little details and then coloring them in. Color endures!
Also, the word I most often hear people use in describing my style is “whimsical”. I think that word is a good one for the flavor of these older sketches too. So, whimsy endures, it seems. Don’t you think?

And three, I am still an animal lover and like to draw animals. You see a lot of cats, especially, in my gift designs, as well as a variety of other creatures. Critters endure!

There may be some less obvious things as well.
What do you think? What stands out to you?

1. Sleeping cat, then:
colorful teenage cat art

2. and 3., Sleeping cats now: (These clocks are called Big Fat Cat, and Home is Where the Cat is. You can click on them to visit to the respective galleries where they are on my website.)
one happy cat wall clockCat at home wall clock

4. Doggie, then:

crazy dog guy
5. and 6., Dogs now: (Dinner Dog night light, Arf wall clock, also linked to galleries.)
Dinner Dog Night LightArf Wall Clock
7. Bird, then:

parrot

8. and 9., Birds now: (Early Bird alarm clock and Peacock wall clock)
early bird alarm clockpeacock wall clock
This peacock painting on the wall clock is actually one of my newest designs, so its a good representation of my most recent work. (Click on the image to see the gallery of my other new designs.) Funny, I return again to something I guess I’ve been drawing for years…colorful plumage.
There are lots more cat, dog, bird and other animal clocks to be found on my website in the product galleries. There is also a lot of stuff that looks pretty different from my adolescent art work, but here I posted the ones where I see the strongest echoes of my 17 year old psychedelic animal doodles.
What about you has endured since childhood? Art/habits/style/loves…?