Works in Progress

I’ve been slow to update my site with new projects. Changes are coming! Have a look around, and please visit again soon.  -Shari

November 15, 2012

Playing with eaglet images. Mentoring with Susan Marie Swanson via the Loft Shabo Award. Having a good time with my latest children’s book manuscript. Love Susan Marie’s input…

 

September 4, 2012: AUTUMN!

Three huge 2012 commitments are behind me now, as I turn inward to fine-tune picture book manuscripts and create art. I recently won the Shabo Award from the Loft Literary Center, in which 8 writers will be mentored by poet/writer Susan Marie Swanson (The House in the Night, To Be Like the Sun, The First Thing My Mama Told Me). I’ll be working on Eaglet, a nonfiction picture book story told from a growing eaglet’s point of view. I welcome this mentorship, autumn workshops, and my fabulous critique group to be challenged and inspired.

May 17, 2012: TAKING TIME to Blog…

I was wrong. Blogging isn’t easy. It takes time. I thought I’d post a drawing each week, but reality is that my work is quite varied and takes me in directions that are not always visual. Since March’s post, I’ve had two writing publications to note:

1) As part of Lake Street Museum in the Streets™ project, I researched Suneson Music Center, and my extended work was published in the spring 2012 issue of Hennepin History magazine. This 10-page article is the result of diving into censuses, city directories, interviews with Sue Suneson LaMeyer, and my recollections as a Suneson customer.

2) My essay, “Cancer Journals,” was chosen to be published in an upcoming anthology entitled, Upon the Arrival of Illness—Coming to Terms with the Dark Companion (Savage Press). I wove 2+ years of journal entries into an essay that details my friend Dorothy Sauber’s and my interlaced journey after her terminal diagnosis. The book is due out October 2012.

Currently, I’m working on two freelance jobs: designing a second book, No New Memories, for author Anita Makar, and illustrating the life of Kateri Tekakwitha, a 17th century Mohawk/Algonquin Indian (Good Ground Press). How exciting is that? I love my work!

 

March 14, 2012: PASSIONS w/ no pay

I got an award yesterday. The Lake Street Council 2012 Community Investment and Leadership Award. I’m not sure where I will put it, but I relish Joyce Wisdom’s tribute of my work on the Museum in the Streets project. Researching these historical sites has been a remarkable treasure hunt.

Currently, just for fun, I’m researching information for a Washburn Fair Oaks presentation for the American Association of University Women in April.  My delving into the lives of the early Minneapolis elite gives me a whole different perspective of the city than that of the workers who lived in my neighborhood near East Lake Street and Powderhorn Park.

February 22, 2012: BLOGGING and image selection

Today I’m starting a blog. I’ve kept a journal since I was thirteen, so I’m thinking that a blog shouldn’t be too difficult. Perhaps I should have designated a chameleon for the mast head image. I’ve often thought of myself as chameleon-like throughout my art career. I was an art teacher, a stained glass artist, and then a graphic artist. Associated Images and freelance jobs have always required me to change focus quickly, to blend within different environments, and to grasp and process information.

 

But I chose a crow for the masthead. I’ve been writing about crows and painting them in gouache, watercolors, and acrylics. Like a crow, I’m alert and observant, and I can be chatty. I flock with others—or glide solo on opportune breezes.

I chose the Minnesota map for a “welcome” image because it depicts where I come from and what I do. When I got the assignment to create the map graphic featuring rural products, I was delighted to research agriculture in my state—what was produced where. I had great fun creating state icons like the moose, canoeists, and wind turbines. The art was drawn by hand, converted to vector images, then colored in Illustrator.

2011 National Rural Assembly Graphic by Shari Albers