April 20, 2018

Anatomy of a Victorian

Wonderful things happen when you listen to your heart and follow your passions. Last summer, I traveled to England and visited the beautiful houses that are part of the National Trust. Walking through these historical rooms and photographing them is one of my favorite things to do. The difference this time was that I took a book of watercolor paper and a pen and started drawing at the houses and from my photographs.
I was struck by a creative passion that had me doing a drawing each day.

When I got home, I was still so excited to have discovered this newfound passion and so I had the idea to draw the interior rooms of my own historical home and then to do a whole body of work that would have the viewer walk through all the rooms of a Victorian house. My love for Victoriana then inspired me to write a poem for each drawing. Thus image and pen married and birthed The Anatomy of a Victorian.

Thrilled that when someone saw the drawings they felt the same joy I feel for Victorian houses and they liked my quirky style, I knew I wanted to show them in a historical setting. It was simply happenstance when I ran into a friend, whose house just happened to be on this year's Galveston Historical House Tour!

I hope some of you readers can go on the house tour, it will be at 3528 Ave. P on the first two weekends of May, but if you can't I'm working on a book which will show all the work of the exhibit and I'll be selling prints.
And I also hope to find another historical museum or house to show the work in.

warm regards,

December 14, 2017

Poor Old Blog

Salutations dear Readers,

I've neglected my blog because life happens and also my creative pursuits are spent on other avenues.

I'm writing feverishly on three novels. The latest one, "Between Wind and Water" will be published in 2018! A quick teaser for this 1898 Galveston Tale:

Stuck in a loveless marriage for thirty years, Abigail is desperate to escape. Her chance comes when she moves to Galveston. Her tailoring business thrives amongst high society, and a passionate love affair unfolds with an English sea captain.

At last she’s found happiness, but what happens when she realizes she has no rights, only wrongs? What measures will she take to possess the love she’s longed for?

I'm doing lots of photography, often focusing on the Victorian architecture that our island has: You can find it at https://www.instagram.com/oldgalvestonhouse/

And my latest endeavor is pen and ink drawings. I'll be having an exhibit of my drawings and poetry in the new year. It's titled "Anatomy of a Victorian."

Until then, I hope you have a wonderful holiday and New Year.

Here's a peek at my style of drawing with my Christmas greeting.

December 31, 2016

Victorian New Year's Eve Resolutions

Lenore and Archibald had enjoyed a busy day. They'd attended two balls and danced with exuberance every waltz and quadrille until they could dance no more. Cousin Myra and Aunt Minnie had finally departed after a month's visit and their little ones were tucked in for the night, leaving just the two of them to toast the New Year in. With champagne tickling their noses, they were quite content with the cozy arrangement.

"Dearest, I think 1840 was such a lovely year!" Lenore exclaimed. "We were finally invited to tea with the Vanderbilts and lawn tennis with the DuPonts."

Archibald tweaked his mustache. "Indeed, a brilliant coup. I'm certain the acquisition of our very smart brougham went a long way in elevating our social standing."

Lenore topped off their glasses. "I think we should decide upon our New Year's resolutions. Goals to better ourselves."

"I'll go first," Achibald offered. "I shall forgo my snuff. I think it considered very old fashioned these days. Don't you? Smoking is much preferred. They say it's healthy for the lungs, especially for asthma."

"A pipe?"

"Yes whenever I'm at home. Of course, I'll always ask leave of you to have a smoke. It is the gentlemanly thing to do."

"I'll sew you a fine velvet smoking jacket," Lenore sighed. "One with a satin collar. Or better yet, I'll buy you one on High Street. And slippers too."

"My darling girl, I think you are perfect in every way, so you need not rattle your brain over any resolutions."

"But I've already given this much deliberation. Now that our family is complete..."

"Complete?" Archibald bellowed. "I don't consider nine children the end of it. I'm one of a eleven and by God, I aim to match my father's efforts."

Lenore gave her best pout. "But darling, shall you have me completely worn out before I'm thirty-five?"

"Of course not, my sweetie, but ..."

"Back to my resolution for the year. I plan to tight-lace my corset to reach an enviable 15 inch waist. Dottie has achieved it and I aim to also."

"I've heard it on good authority that corsets constrict the organs."

"That is what smelling salts and a fainting couch are for," Lenore countered.

As the clock struck twelve, Archibald took his wife in his arms gave her a kiss that weakened any resolve she had of curtailing their family.

Lenore smiled contentedly. "Happy New Year's, my love."

September 28, 2016

Endless Days and Nights in Fat Alley

Endless Days and Nights in Fat Alley

Fat Alley was a notorious red light district in Galveston Texas. Photographs from that era rarely show the terrible plight of the women involved in that trade. This is one poor girl's story.

Lottie was only ten when her mama died and her good-for-nothing pa sold her to Madam Kitty in an alley off Postoffice Street. Her job was to fetch clean water for the basin next to the bedstead in between Johns. She kept her head low and learned to stay out of reach of lecherous men who fancied the virginal blossom of youth.

It seemed overnight her breasts grew and soft hair sprouted between her legs. The changes did not go unnoticed. Lottie was all grown, they declared, and she was given her own crib with a rag filled mattress and a lamp draped with a red scarf. Her lips and cheeks were painted and her hair curled.

She did not know what to expect. She had seen the tears and bruises, and unborn children carried away in the middle of the night. But she could not imagine the pain of the endless days and nights that were to come.