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Preview: Kim Hambric Art

Kim Hambric Art

Kim Hambric Art - Mixed Media and Fiber Collage

Updated: 2017-04-16T06:56:10.022-04:00


Around the Studio


Right now, the studio is a mess.  Dust.  Cat litter.  Unfinished pieces.  Finished pieces.  Not much new going on.Time for a close up Studio Tour. Tomorrow the vacuum comes out.  Then there will be a parade of Swiffer products.  I will organize (further).  I will no doubt break something.Something new will begin. And for Heaven's sake, a few old things will finally be finished.[...]

Color Drunk


What to do when you hit a wall while collaging?

Get the paints out.

Going back for more!  I have an urge for teal next.

Gone South


So much for my plans to do a lot of blogging over the summer.  Now I am back down in Charleston, SC.  I know my Pennsylvania friends will be calling this time of the year "fall" now that school has started, but here in Charleston, summer is still raging on.

Summer in the City I, collage, 20 x 20"

This piece represents summer in my "new" city.  Green, lush, fragrant and a bit gritty and prickly.

I have yet to do any creating since returning three weeks ago.  We are busy having the exterior of the house painted.  Each time I approach a window, a head pops up to surprise me.  A little too disconcerting when it happens in my studio.  This is a good time to photograph newer pieces and update my website.  And enjoy the rest of a long summer.

Heading North


Will eventually be called Lost in Venice #?

Soon we will travel north for the summer.  I will greatly miss my "new" home of Charleston, SC.  After less than three years, I have rooted here.  It would take great force to rip me out now.  Until quite recently, I have been dreading heading back up to Pennsylvania.  But with the daytime temperatures around 87 and nighttime being little less, I am looking forward to escaping the heat.

How I will miss my bright, happy studio.

I was hoping to finish up all projects by the time we leave.  However, I keep starting projects.  My studio walls are full and I'm lining up pieces along the floor.  Does the piece above look finished?  I'm thinking so.  But, as they say, it aint over 'til its over.  Upon my return, I have a lot of photography to do.  Another favorite gallery to contact regarding representation.  An Etsy site to update.  Blogs to write.  I have fallen down on all of the above.  I do not do New Year's resolutions.  I do Autumn resolutions.  All will be well in the fall.  Right?

And now I must begin packing for two months.  I need one of those ladies' maids from Downton Abbey to load up my trunks with all of my finery.

Fifty Shades of Blue-Green


Two weeks ago today I was standing on a bridge over the Grand Canal in Venice, fighting off selfie-stick pushers and trying my best to take photos without being overcome by my fear of heights in open spaces.

And I was amazed every minute about all of the shades of blue/green found in the canals of Venice.

I've tried my best to capture them at home in paint, but I fear I will never get close enough.  All of those shades are achingly beautiful.  I will not even attempt to describe them with words.  I am not so arrogant to think that I can.

Anyway, between those squares and those bits below (more of that to come when my cheap and outdated guidebooks arrive from Amazon's private sellers), a piece or two or three of art will be created.  I know I will fail to capture the beauty, so I'll just have to do the best I can.

And I'm going back. Some how.  Some way.  Some day.  I cannot be kept from a place so beautiful for long.

I will pester my readers with more photos soon.   I find that I am overwhelmed by the amount of photos taken.   The three of us took a total of more than 800 photos.  Some sorting must be done.

Who wants to come over for a slide show?



This is just a section of a piece that I have in an exhibition celebrating International Women's Day next weekend.

I find it very difficult working to a theme.  Give me lots of restrictions on a project of my choice and that's ok.  Tell me what it's going to be about and it is a struggle.

I'll post the piece in full after the exhibition is up (and after I have taken a satisfactory photo of the entire piece).

I struggled with beginning the piece for several days until I saw Shovels & Rope in concert.  They are a local band now making it big.  Ten minutes after Cary Ann Hearst walked out on the stage in her red dress, I knew I had the basis for this piece.

By the way, if Shovels and Rope comes to your town, go see them.



Next up, a piece that represents Charleston, SC.  Now that it has been 19 degrees overnight, I'm thinking that I won't see another mosquito for a couple of months.

To G or not to G


Those last final touches can take weeks.

Little bits of paper go on and off and on and off and left and right and up and down.   Then a decision is made, often a regrettable one.  Then I start that one little section over.   Or paint over it.  And then wish I hadn't done that.

This piece has been on the table for weeks.  And weeks.  And it is taking up too much room.  I need to finish it.  A couple of squares are bugging me.  Some are too sparse.  And some are too busy.  

And that dang G needs to make up its mind to stay or go.

Charleston, SC: The Fall Tour 2014


Autumn here in Charleston is subtle.  Shy.  And a little bit late.  I do miss the brilliant display up north.  But if I still lived there, it would be long over.  Autumn here is looooonnnnng.  And just when you think there is nothing left, the camellias begin to bloom and spring is not far away.[...]

Murray Boulevard Garden Society


Murray Boulevard Garden Society, Collage, 20x20" ©2014 K. Hambric

One of my favorite "new" pieces.  Must have been completed early in the year, before my 51st birthday.  Sometimes I put my age in my pieces.  Not because I am especially proud of making it though another year, but I just love the way numbers look.  Letters too.  And I love the number 5.  It's so beautiful.  Curves and angles.  It seems so complete to me.

Murray Boulevard sits on the Ashley River in Charleston, SC.  It is also known at the Low Battery.  It's houses are not quite as grand as those around the corner on the High Battery.  Google images for Charleston and it is the High Battery that shows up.  I imagine, from looking through the gates, that the gardens are quite lovely.  Possibly grand.  Not huge, however.  These are not plantations.  If the garden owners got together and formed a club, I feel that this would be a good, if humorous, representation.

My artwork is beginning to make the rounds of galleries.  I've just been given a no from one of my favorites and, I feel, one of the three best galleries in town.  I've got to saddle up the pony and trot my stuff back out there.  It is like getting your children out into the world.  I might think my daughter is just the best, smartest and most beautiful creature out there (she is).  But others might not feel the same way. Obviously.

That damn Dory from Finding Nemo keeps swimming past in my head . . .

     . . . . just keep on swimming . . . . keep on swimming . . . . keep on swimming

How I Spent My Summer Vacation


We spent our summer months back in State College, PA, so my husband could be close to work for eight weeks and we could (hopefully) escape the worst of the heat in Charleston, SC.

I'm assuming that when people ask how I spent my summer that they really want to know the answer.

Often I guess wrong.  I'm just a little surprised that those folks that asked didn't want to know that I spent my summer days in my attic studio battling wasps and painting little squares.

I shipped up a small box of acrylic paints, plastic hotel room keys, and piles of 4x4" and 5x5" gesso boards.

Paint was slapped on each little square with the plastic cards.  Areas were taped off and more paint was slapped on.  The paint was allowed to dry for a couple of days, then the pieces were stacked and room was made for more squares to be painted.

After being stacked for a few days, I went back to play with my squares by changing colors or adding more color or whiting things out.  I noticed that some of the squares had stuck to the others.  Lo and behold, I had discovered the rustic look I had tried to achieve in the past.

Now, I shall spend the rest of the summer and autumn figuring out what to do with these squares.  While I am looking forward to finishing these pieces, I would be happy just playing with color and paint for the next year or so.

Another Wall for Wile E.


Just when I thought I was ready to go live on that darn website, I run into another wall.  Will Wile E. Coyote ever catch that roadrunner?

Two Mondays ago, I was patting myself on the back for completed several more pieces AND photographing them, cleaning up those photographs, and having it all organized for putting on the website.  Then, I went back to the studio to pat myself on the back there.  I noticed one of my pieces did not look right.  Something had changed.  Upon inspection of several other pieces, they did not look right either.  Seems as if something I had used on several pieces was not a good idea.  Anyway, last week was spent in an attempt to fix them.  Most seem fixable.  One is probably bound for the trash bin.  Two others are on the fence.  And while I would like to be working on the website and new pieces, I am spending time correcting the past.

Anyway.  Two Tuesdays ago, I felt it was all going to be tossed in the trash and there was nothing I could do but go out and buy a handbag.  My latest one had just one more day left in it.  In my frame of mind, I bought two.  Spiffy.

And then a new mess of art supplies.  One order I thought would take care of the mess.  It did not.  The supplies in the next order seemed to help.  When in doubt, throw money.

But the best idea I seem to have had in a while is the purchase of new wooden letter stamps.

 Love these!  The large ones are 5" tall!  I must use these soon to improve my mood.  They were filthy little buggers.  Covered with decades old oily ink.  Not sure I have removed all of the ink.  They still have the tangy, dangerous smell of a grandfather's dank workshop.  These alphabets are far from being complete.  Hopefully, I will soon have an "OMG!" piece in the works.  Might have to do a LOL piece with the larger letters.

Has anyone out there ever thrown away a completed piece?

Wonders Never Cease


Wonders Never Cease, 20 x20' collage on board ©2013 K. Hambric

Still struggling with the new website.  Need to write that blasted artist statement and fill up an "about me" page.  Aaarrrgh.  I'd rather make art.

Here's a great quote from one of my favorite artists: Michael Dickter:

Paintings are made of hundreds of distinct moments and of small decisions; each has its own “no” or a small ecstatic “yes.” The finished piece is a history of those fleeting, but profound moments."

I'd much rather experience a small ecstatic "yes" than write about myself.  Or, at least I could visit his site and look at his beautiful bird paintings.



A little joke.  This post is suitable for work.  It is, however, extremely raw.

Why don't I post more often?  I prefer to wait until a piece is finished.

I prefer to wait until the lighting is right and the studio is clean and organized.

I prefer to wait until I have the perfect, witty lines ready to accompany the finished artwork.

And that is why I have not posted since November.

I just received a witty little book in the mail.  Austin Kleon says I need to put something out there now.

Now, back to the studio to read more of this book and watch paint dry.

Autumn (???) in Charleston


I am experiencing Autumn for the first time in Charleston, South Carolina.  Fall has always been my favorite season.  I am a huge fan of red, yellow, orange and brown leaves.  To be surrounded by a cacophony of falling leaves  is one of my greatest pleasures.Yet, here, most things remain green.  Maybe more leaves have yet to turn.  Time will tell.Until then, I will focus on the details.  The autumnal details.When yellow and gold leaves are difficult to find, flowers will do.A stunning, fading rose against yellowing leaves.Ginkgo leaves.  My favorite.Fall-tinted buildings become much more significant this time of year.These yellow-flowering shrubs are everywhere.  I have yet to learn their name.Ripening fruit.  Coloring foliage.I have yet to find a leaf this color here.Staged.  Couldn't help myself.Love that finial in the corner.More floral beauty.  So many plants are still in bloom.Would one of these be missed?Gorgeous leaves and branches against those shutters.Random beauty.Unidentified berries.Anyone know what this is?  I do know that as the fruits ripen, it will become more vile in appearance.I'm looking forward to watching nature change over the rest of the year.  I am not looking to the freezing temperatures we will have over the weekend.  Just one night, but that will be enough to do plenty of damage.  I guess a flake or two of snow would be too much to ask.[...]

Decline and Fall - Completed


Decline and Fall, 18 x18" collage on board ©2013 K. Hambric

So not the best photo.  I'll be taking a much better one for the soon to come new and improved website.  Soon.  I'm practicing my procrastination.  And doing very well, thank you.

"Civilizations."  They come.  They build.  They conquer.  They screw up.  They fall.

And what is that '50' stamped on there?  That's my new age.  I'm including my own declining and falling.  Why not?  I'm not sure about the conquering, though.  How does one go about that?

Decline and Fall - In the Beginning


A trip to buy beads - diverted.  Just happened upon an antiques store.

Books!  I could use a few "new" books to slice up.  Was I feeling lucky?



Not much to look at from the outside, but a promising subject.

And another promising subject.

But, most importantly, vintage gray end papers.  Gorgeous vintage gray!  $5 per book.  Two end papers per book.  Worth it.

Now, I needed a project.  And I had certain colors in mind for this gray.

I always know the colors are right when I feel it in my teeth.  Too much contrast or too many jarring colors and to look at it makes my teeth hurt.  But the teeth just felt right with this.  Just enough of a twinge.

Wonders Never Cease


Wonders Never Cease, 20 x 20" mixed media on board ©2012 K. Hambric

Wonders Never Cease is part of an ongoing series of collages.  While the series itself does not have a name, it has a theme.  The ugliness and beauty of nature.  Human enjoyment and fear of nature.  The urbanization and suburbanization of our world.  Human happiness among the chaos.

A new website will be coming soon and will contain all of my new, larger pieces.  I am scouting out appropriate galleries here in Charleston.  I must rewrite my artist statement, bio and other blah blah blah items.  I'm sure that is easy for some, but I do not find it easy to talk about myself or my art.  I've heard about those elevator statements where one must be able to explain their work in the time it takes for an average elevator ride.  Strange how it can take me months to come up with something to say about my world in 20 seconds or less.

Now it is time for coffee and glue.  Hopefully not together.

See America Now


Monday was studio cleanup day.  Dusting.  Putting away things from before the summer up north.   Picking up of little dead things with lots of legs.Tuesday was studio day. I can't say I had been too creative over the summer.  My plan of a large series of small quilts didn't get too far off of the ground.Would my studio time in Charleston be productive?  How long would it take before I became inspired?  I paced.  I looked at books.  I stared at the computer. Then I decided to finish unpacking.  On the top of the box marked "studio," I found an old guide book I purchased on Etsy over the summer.  And there it was.  Right on the cover.  Those old greens and reds.  I would have to put some other colors with them.  But the deal was sealed and I got out the scissors. Here is the first little 5 x 5" square.  Only 15 more to go on my new piece, "See America Now."[...]

Humidity 95%


Back in Charleston, SC.

Hot.  Well, actually pretty warm.  I think this mid-80 stuff might just be a cool spell.  Humid, definitely.

Slowly things find their way into their original nooks and crannies.  Some things are finding new places.  Some things will just have to wait awhile (much to the dismay of my husband).  Things must move a little slowly.  The combination of a broken toe and 95% humidity will see to it.

The studio needs some sorting.  But every time I walk by the door my heart races.  I cannot wait to get to work.

Soon I will totter out for some iced coffee.

This Week at Camp Lazy


8:45 - Wake up

8:45-9:30 - iPad movies in bed

9:30-9:45 - Breakfast

9:45-11:45 - Who the hell knows

11:45-12:15 - lunch

12:15 - 3:00 - who the hell knows

3:00 - 4:30 - do something constructive time (no parental monitoring)

4:30-5:30 - lounge in bathtub (probably unnecessary as no calories were burned)

5:30 - 6:00 - piano practice

6:00-6:45 - who the hell knows

6:45 - 7:15 - dinner

7:15-8:00 - movie time

8:00-???  story time, reading, who the hell knows, bed

My daughter has spent most of her summer in camps.  Acting, cooking, hiking, swimming, other kinds of activities that require more than just breathing.  Now, camps are done and the adults in the family are out working, cleaning for the renters, and packing for the move back to Charleston.  I don't have time for parental monitoring.  I'll be paying for this later when the iPad has fused itself to my daughter's hands.  I'm racking up the bad mothering citations.

And my stories about children in other countries working in mines or mills get no reaction.

Dew Point


Dew Point, 5.5x4", fiber ©2013 Kim Hambric

Another little dark one.  And there are a few more I need to photograph.  And even a few more that will never see the light of day.  Their reality just didn't match up to my vision.

These little pieces are now in my Etsy shop.

Summer of Fabric


Nightblooming, 5.5 x 4", fiber ©2013 K.Hambric

A summer return to State College, PA.

A respite from the summer heat in Charleston, SC.

Today's temperature in Pennsylvania - 89.  In Charleston 84.

I'm sure the proper order of things will come about soon.

I'm back to using fiber for the summer.  The vast majority of my paints and paper, and most other necessary items, are still in Charleston.  My fabrics, threads, beads and sewing machines remain here in Pennsylvania. I've chosen to work mainly with scraps this summer and create very small pieces.  I would rather be working with my paints and papers and be creating with happier colors, but here we are.

I'm trying my best to have fun with these pieces.  Sometimes fun for me can be a bit dark.  I'm not creating as readily and prolifically as I planned.  Perhaps it is the result of having only darker colors to begin with?

While I am enjoying a quiet summer here, I'm trying my best NOT to count down to the end of summer.  Exactly one month.  School starts down there for my daughter in mid-August (yes, southern people ARE crazy), so we will be thrust back in the land of heat and bright color in just four weeks.

I'm trying to convince myself to go into the studio and play around with my dark, earthy fabrics.  It is quite hot. Especially in the attic studio.


What to do with those pesky magazine subscription cards


Glue them onto a cradled wood boardStart smearing on paint with a credit cardAdd more paintCarve a stampStamp repeatedlyDraw some flowersAdd more paint and some stamensDebate whether the piece needs anything else.Start another.[...]



Abner Ben Yoder King Stoltzfus, March 2000-May10, 2013 Abner, dog of many names (not all good)AbberAbneritoAbernitoAbenairPupPuppitoIdjitDogDogFoolF#*@monkeyStinkbucketLittledawgFor the Love of PeteDamnitSirSonAte his last stick on Friday afternoon.  Well missed.[...]