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Borsheim Art Newsletter:

by Kelly Borsheim copyright 19 September 2017

  • Wind and Wisteria: mantel bas-relief sculpture
  • Water Drawings – Charcoal / Cinque Terre Inspired
  • Hurricane Irma – Gymnast and Stargazer
  • Vasily Fedorouk: Shell
  • Updated pages: Bronze Casting Explained, Collectors Resources, Etc.
  • Art Workshop in Tuscany: May 2018
  • Fine Art America : prints on metal!
  • Blog Highlights: Alpine Climber and More!
  • Subscription Info.

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[details of wisteria in clay sculpture]

Detail of clay sculpture, Wind and Wisteria
prior to casting by Kelly Borsheim

Dear Art Lover,
Happy damn-near October! How is that happening? As luck would have it, the theme of this art newsletter [wind, water, and wisteria] is coincidentally reflective of the natural disasters happening in Texas and Florida, in the two places that I have spent most of my life living. Oyyy..

Ideas arrive a bit nebulous at times. Knowing one thing [such as wanting a diagonal line in a specific place on a blank canvas] often helps determine the next thing. When I found my current home, it was such a relief and has grown into being even more of a joy. I got inspired by my fireplace mantel and the blank wall just above it. I knew that I wanted two faces or figures in a composition there. Czech Art Nouveau painter Alphonse Mucha has been an inspiration to me since my little sister told me about him just before I visited Prague in 2006. I envisioned creating something girly and romantic. And then the wisteria covering the fence just outside my home developed a special meaning for me, so in it went.

So without further ado… here is my newest, almost finished sculpture, Wind and Wisteria.

[Photoshop mock-up of future bronze bas-relief sculpture over mantel Wind and Wisteria]

Wind and Wisteria
bronze wall-hanging sculpture [bas-relief]
approx. 21" h x 28" w x 1" d
© 2017 Kelly Borsheim

Note: The image above is a Photoshop mock-up of what the sculpture might look like when finished. Currently the sculpture exists in a light green clay on a board, as you see below.

As I usually do, there is a Pre-Casting Savings offer with a lowered introductory price that lasts until the first metal casting is done and finds a home. It is my way of saying thank you for taking that leap of faith that the metal sculpture will look even better than the clay you see online. And she does not even need to go above your fireplace: Almost any wall will do! Let me know.

You may read the full story with images of the work in progress, as well as see the pre-casting SAVINGS price here:

[original sculpture in plastilina clay for future bronze bas-relief sculpture over mantel Wind and Wisteria]

[Detail from Warrior Spirit bronze sculpture]
"Warrior Spirit" [detail]
See this blog post that is
a tribute to art models,
one in particular.
[Click on the image to
read the story.]

[Spotlight charcoal drawing of sun shining down into the sea, Vernazza, Cinque Terre, Italy]

Water Drawings – Charcoal / Cinque Terre Inspired

Last year I got to show one of my brothers a taste of this country I now call home. We did a whirlwind tour of Italy in about ten days. We really enjoyed the dramatic rocky coastline of Cinque Terre [five lands, in Italian], although it was choppy enough weather that we were not able to do the boat tour one morning, as I had hoped. [I often leave touristy stuff for when family visits me.]

After the cast was removed from my broken wrist in July, I wanted to start using my hand again. I adore charcoal drawings and had these images from Cinque Terre [specifically Vernazza] that would not leave my head until the next time I picked up “a stick.” So, here are the two charcoal drawings that carry the theme of water [and sky, but that does not start with a “w” for this newsletter titled "Wind, Water, and Wisteria"]. Thanks to my sister Amber for naming the first drawing, Spotlight.

53 x 74 cm [but can crop down the sky 10 cm?];
20.8 [or 17] x 29 inches
charcoal w/black pastel
Thick paper made in Valleriana, Tuscany
© 2017 Kelly Borsheim

[Splash waves crashing against boulders from the sea, Vernazza, Cinque Terre, Italy]

I envisioned these two as being paired and exhibited together, although they certainly need not be. And if Spotlight were to get cropped, I suppose one would prefer to crop this Splash as well. I am good either way.

In Splash I added some slate blue accents in the shadow sides of the boulders along the shore's edge and distance water line. Not sure why; it just seemed the thing to do.

You may see some progress pictures during the design stage, as well as prices for both online here: http://www.borsheimarts.com/charcoal-drawing/2017/SpolightSplash-CinqueTerreSeascape.htm

53 x 74 cm; 20.8 x 29 inches
charcoal with pastel
Thick paper made in Valleriana, Tuscany
© 2017 Kelly Borsheim

[Marble carving Gymnast during lightning storm Florida]

Hurricane Irma – Gymnast and Stargazer Sculptures

What started out as a bit of "Facebook fun sharing" with my family pre-Hurricane Irma, has ended with bad-tempered Irma causing major problems in Florida.

September 1, 2017: About ten days before Irma hit central Florida, my sister Amber posted a video on Facebook showing how my lovely white marble sculpture Gymnast looked during a lightning storm. It was pretty cool. Sadly, I am not very tech savvy, especially with video. So, our Aunt Patsy in Minnesota tried to grab just a frame still-shot from Amber's post. I share this with you here. I was so touched by her taking the time to do this. You may see my marble Stargazer in the background, right, about the height of the hand on the Gymnast.

September 9, 2017: Alex and his almost six-year-old son August decided to build a little wooden structure around the Gymnast to protect her from debris [if Irma decided to visit directly, there was, perhaps, little more protection that could have been done]. She is far too heavy for casual moving. Alex had already lifted Stargazer up and into the house for protection. Aren't they charming? [See images below.]

Hurricane Irma 'breezed' by on Sunday, 10 September, more or less. Their house took a beating and developed leaks everywhere, but is thankfully still standing. It is an old historical home in central Florida, with at least three levels to it, and much documented history. They have been slowly giving it the TLC (tender, loving care) that she needed, as well as love and great memories already. As I write this ten days later, we are still trying to find someone to help them protect the roof from more damage as the rains continue with infrequent pauses. But they will need a new roof and some other repairs. We decided to keep the Gymnast under wraps until hurricane season has calmed down again. She seems ok, and is not demanding attention, in any event.

[Marble carving Gymnast protecting sculpture from Hurricane Irma Florida] [Marble carving Gymnast protecting sculpture from Hurricane Irma Florida] [Marble carving Gymnast protecting sculpture from Hurricane Irma Florida]

[Texas fossilized shell limestone portrait sculpture]

Shell, a Portrait Sculpture by Vasily Fedorouk

Sticking to the water theme of this newsletter, check out Shell, a portrait by my late mentor and friend Vasily Fedorouk, featuring Texas fossilized limestone. The shell shapes you see embedded in the stone are really there! A lovely work, playing with a unique rock that is called "Texas Rattlesnake Limestone," since the shells resemble the noise-making tail of that snake. This layer of fossils only exists for about six inches deep in the earth, surrounded by "plain" limestone.

Contact Vasily's wife Dilbara directly if you would like to make Shell yours. I encourage you to visit his Web site and have a look around!
http://www.vasilyfedorouk.com, Tel. (001) 630-271-1135; E-mail: contact@vasilyfedorouk.com

10 x 11 x 3.5 inches
Texas Rattlesnake Limestone
copyright 2006 Vasily Fedorouk
[Base looks like marble]

Updated pages: Bronze Casting Explained, Collectors Resources, Etc.

You may find these pages linked from the bottom of my home page, and occasionally throughout the site in what I hope are logical places. Feel free to suggest other topics that might be useful to you. Thank you.

[bronze ingots waiting for melting and casting into sculpture]

Art Workshop in Tuscany: May 2018

I am sometimes asked why I have not taught a workshop in a long while. So, I thought that I would try that again now that I am settled in a bit more.

This is a request for feedback on what you would like if you came to Tuscany to work with me. I have taught in the past many subjects such as Anatomy for Sculptors, how to sculpt hands and feet, portrait drawing, pastel workshop, master copies [of famous and very dead artists], charcoal drawing, art business and marketing, stone carving [although there are other plans in the works for this at our nearby quarry], figure and still-life painting. Because this my first time teaching in the hills here, I would like to limit the workshop topics to 2-dimensional art and perhaps any topic besides still life. [I may have enough easels, but still-life setups require a lot of equipment and time and object hunting.] I have also wondered about creating an art "retreat" for a more individual approach to teaching, somewhere between private lessons and "you are on your own, kid." And because being in Nature is an important part of the art process.

Besides helping you in the art area you want, my secondary goal is to help the economy in these mountains. For that reason, my thought is to only include lunch and a light breakfast in the workshop fee [lunch will be in one of our three local restaurants], keep the fees low, and then let YOU choose the rest of the services to match your budget and desires, without the middleman. Several of my friends and neighbors have apartments or rooms to rent and I will post their information, allowing you to choose your accommodations based on your budget or location needs. I can help you with those things.

This area is gorgeous, as those who follow me on Facebook and see the pictures I post can attest. Hiking here is wonderful. There are horses to ride, if you enjoy that. Bicycling is definitely not for the weak, but I am surprised at how many cyclists I see up here. It would be helpful if you rented a car, but we can work this out if you do not want to drive or are mostly happy being on foot for this workshop. We are also close enough to Firenze [Florence], Lucca, and many wonderful places around Tuscany for extended fun time.

I am thinking late May 2018 because I live up in the hills of Valleriana, Tuscany, about 1.5 hours NW of Florence, and one never knows how cold the winter may be. If you would like to know more about my area, please visit my newsletter about Castelvecchio in Valleriana, Tuscany, Italy.

I would love your opinion on any or all aspects of this idea. Thank you.

[view of Castelvecchio with Stiappa back left and Pontito back right, Valleriana Tuscany Italy]

This is the location of the art workshop/retreat. Castelvecchio is the main village in the center of this image. Stiappa is in the background on the left, with Pontito in the background, right.

These are three of the ten "castled" villages in Valleriana, Tuscany, Italy. Pescia is the closest town on the train and bus stations, but we also have [limited] bus service to the hills. I lived here for a year and a half without a car, although a car does make life easier. Let's talk!

Fine Art America : prints on metal!

I have been really enjoying licensing my art on the FAA products online:: 30 day guarantee.. pillows, shower curtains, prints on metal, etc. During my Kickstarter campaign in 2015, the prints on metal were some of the awards and upon the success of that project, I ordered some and hand-delivered them to supporters. I was pleased with how happy people were with them: A good quality product and fast service! They arrive ready to hang, so easy!

Go Shopping!

If you see an image on my site, my blog, or even my Facebook pages that you would like to own as a print or notecard or pillow or anything FAA offers, please contact me and I will upload the image for you. I do not earn much off of licensing, but you know, every bit helps me to continue making art. The best part is that you get to enjoy the art images in a way that makes you happy. Win-win.


[blog post about raindrops]

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[August Art Auction]

Thank you for sharing this journey with me. Thank you for sharing this newsletter with your friends and colleagues. Thank you. Please let me know if you would like to commission an artwork; or add an existing work to your home or work collection.

Kelly Borsheim
19 September 2017

P.S. Happy birthday, Lei!

[fresco in art blog post Pescia Italy]

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Give a Book Review:

Thank you for your interest and support in the book I wrote this past summer about being a street artist in Italy. I was thrilled to receive such glowing feedback about how I had shared not only the art and the artists, but also something of the political environment regarding street art, interaction with the public and other street performers (my favorite chapter is the one in which I have invited children to join me on the pavement), as well as images of the Renaissance City herself.

The book is titled "My Life as a Street Painter in Florence, Italy." If you have read the book and would like to help in the promotion of it, perhaps you would consider writing up a short review for Amazon.com (or even send me a testimonial for my own site). Your review does not have to be fancy. The intention is to help other people get a better idea about what is inside and whether or not they may enjoy the read.

Just click here. Scroll down to the section on Customer Reviews. Click on the button to the right that says, "Create your own review" Sign in and follow their guide.

or from Amazon.com:
Order from Amazon (US):
My Life as a Street Painter in Florence, Italy

If you have not gotten your copy of the book, you may order directly from my site:

[book street painting florence italy]
Above: Cover for book:
"My Life as a Street Painter in Florence, Italy"

by Kelly Borsheim

Order the book today
(Click on the image above.)

I have about 20 copies here with me in Italy, so if you are also here, just write me and we will organize the rest…

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