Tag Archives: photography

Merry Christmas card & Happy Holidays –!

BELIEVE in possible. . .window
Christmas tree in store white
magic lights do glow and outside
a snow angel or two.  Jingle bell
the cathedral rings long. Then try
the road less traveled by. . .
 HAPPY Holidays jingle JINgLE
solstice sweet holy Hallejulah
JOY to fire light the world on
and fly our singing hearts oh!
wings of peace away fly away to
territory untethered. . .cloud
snow star memory tear whisper
kiss kind friendship into a New Year!
Peace and bliss and possible. . .

Merry Christmas & JOYful

ode to snowflakes

tree lights song. . .
all the stockings are hung by the
Chimney with care. . .ice skates,
brick cardboard fire place hot
cocoa and orange memory. Santa 
cookies sugar and icing. Nuts in
a bowl for cracking.  A box of
chocolates.  Poke.  A carrot for
Rudolph up on the rooftop and sing
Frosty the Snowman and Dickens. . .
it’s a Wonderful Life White Christmas
–peace on earth goodwill toward men

and woman.  Sweet clementines


In the bathtub on Saturday it comes to me a calling for wilderness.  A sojourn walkabout drive all the way to South America across many borders.  Across the portrayed realities of gunman and drama and fear.  Into the possible the unknown the joyful abundance of challenge and shift and belief.  To experience the tides as they rush in than out.  Toe heart rushing through and away and over flowing the river floods and bleeds no bandage thick enough to sustain the violence say push push believe drive go open up gratitude kind truth like a Hallmark Card.  Put down our weapons of mass destruction drone nuclear cold war pharmaceutical economy and help the butcher’s son the widow’s daughter.  Make room for those who need.  And that is all of us.  All.  Sweet juice dribble down our cheeks over our lips to love.


Brenda Roper is one of 6 writers and artists currently living in the oldest artist colony on Canyon Road in Santa Fe.   Her work forthcoming in Cirque the Solstice Issue #7.

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Intermezzo II –Gustavus C-47 series

November 1957 – A C-47 transport plane went down on the southeastern tip of Glacier Bay National Park (then a National Monument) during a snowstorm.  Four Alaska Air National Guardsmen were killed.  Three others walked away.  50 years later I walk down an obscure trail through the rainforest and see the wreckage, reclaimed by the understory and orchids.  The brilliant colors, the graffiti, the story preserved. I found it fascinating.

SIZE:  13″x13″ with frame
MEDIA:  digital photo, acrylic and found object mounted on painted panel

The 7 photo assemblages in this series are original photographs by the artist (Brenda Roper) taken July 2008  on a trip to Gustavus & Glacier Bay National Park in celebration of her 50th birthday and bon voyage (after 20 years of living in the far north).  Brenda relocated to Santa Fe where she “assembled” these as an Artist in Residence at El Zaguan.  With the closing of Virtu Gallery (Anchorage) they recently traveled back down the Alaska Highway.  Full circle it seems.

Now showing as part of  Zaguanistas:  Intermezzo II   –a group exhibition with works by Billy McLane, Bethany Orbison, Max Carlos Martinez, Adam Eisman and Brenda Roper

Price:  $300/each or make offer for the series (7 pieces)

Please stop by 545 Canyon Road

Open most weekdays 10 to 4pm/Friday evenings 5 to 7pm/Saturday 11 to 4pm

Studio visits by appointment

Summer ART Sale –$200/special price on limited 12″x12″ paintings

Posted in Brenda Roper, El Zaguan exhibition, Studio Art Also tagged , , , , , |

Who does she think she is –? the movie

I’m recently back from Montana, and Taos, and two weeks with friends and water falling and waterfalls and wet lush environment and DH Lawrence and a little bit of love and contemplation and the call of a loon and many deer and memories of people I met years ago.  That was interesting to me.  How people stayed after they arrived and now nearly 30 years have passed.  I moved up north and then south and now adrift in the sun and still longing to be an ex-pat someplace near an ocean and an artist with time to develop her creative adventures and why do I not?  Make it so.  The dreamer and then the dream.


Who Does She Think She Is? the movie (excellent and please watch –Netflix and possibly your local video library) and another conversation on time and art and motherhood http://littlebrownmushroom.wordpress.com/2012/02/24/on-being-an-artist-and-a-mother-a-conversation/

And I not a mother (by choice or design) and still I grapple with defining time into productivity of the creative kind, and perhaps that is an oxymoron. Or not.  Turning few available hours into studio time or blog time or exploring art marketing for success kind of time or visibility on a grander scale (think red in the wilderness) or writing poetry from scribbles in a notebook on trips before mentioned (to Taos or Montana) before this week slides into another and soon the context of those ideas are stale and fit only to throw to birds at the edge of the yard.   Like old ciabatta.  Crumbs.

To provide absolute structure intimidates me creatively as I contemplate THAT the only option when working 5 days a week –albeit part-time and 2 hours every other Sunday.  To spend 10 minutes on yoga and this 1/2 hour with the chicken wire and too many starts and stops to even begin.  I want eternity —well not really.  Just one weekday without other obligation.  Point in case is this very morning a friend responded to my suggestion of watching “the movie” by emailing the link to the blog above and bingo I want to sit and write my own blog but I must get dressed and out the door for the first day job and there is no calling to say I need a wellness day not today and so begins a draft to revise later, but later I have to clean the office because I was too exhausted to do it yesterday and some things cannot be put off (until tomorrow or forever) and generally it is not the studio that wins.

When I watched Who does she think she is? I felt a fraud.  Look at these women I whisper to no one, with five children and single parenting and taking action as activist for political causes –with passion so deep and driven they make it happen despite the odds.  And some more supported than others but the dream driving through divorce and dinner and Sunday morning service.  Like an avalanche. I blame my dilemma mostly financial though only excuses really– even when true in the capitalistic reality of current times –dreams do not balk at the bank balance.

How to eliminate the co-dependent day job interaction spilling away like scree down the slope. Passive/aggressive.  Still I linger. Hesitate.  Patience is a virtue until it kills you.  Slip slide happy feet. Knees over toes.  Is it only fear –? of success or failure.  Fear of love and commitment.  Fear of not signing the lease.  Of  giving notice and no where to go that is better or more appropriate or affecting the dream?  What car are you driving and are you driving at all?  Who is driving the dream?  Brenda.  Cupcake frog and GRT (taxes)?  A wheat penny to my father who refuses to have a conversation.  With me.  Happy Father’s Day anyway.  I try.  Like the village idiot.  Repetition sometimes brings enlightenment.  Eventually.


Friends exclaim how inspired I must be living on Canyon Road.  In the land of art and galleries and adobe mud hut Old Santa Fe Trail of ancients molding me into a better artist by osmosis.  And for some it is more visible. My fountain bubbles from within Jungian acronym (though I forget where I fit on the IM_ _ nurtured by sun and by travel, by texture and conversations (sometimes over wine) with a friend or to no one in the room.  Recently like a geyser at the possibility of love.  Anticipation and poetic exchange and the unveiling of reciprocity in the flesh.  But then it is over (though it is never over) and I become lost in the cycle of life.  Participating without focus or conscious direction.  Fickle joy.  Full-fledged then fleeting.  Some days are best not for decision making.  God bless intuition.  What seemed possible is smothered by a reality of can’t and that childhood pattern of needing to ask permission.  Then I wake.  Up.  No time to process and it all passes like the earth revolving around the sun.  The moon following the earth.  Orbits.  All that turning.  Twirling orbit revolving around –dance on.

Mabel Dodge Luhan

The aesthetic of my neighborhood is historic and comforting and quiet (except for Tuesday morning garbage pick up at 5am and those folks strolling down from El Farol some evenings but. . .) YES to live among a place of beauty well tended is certainly preferred over a four-lane highway of box stores and neon.  Gypsy Alley and Gormley Lane to RV’s parked in the Wal-Mart wilderness.   I am grateful for the hollyhocks and chestnut trees, the portal to keep me cool, the wisteria still purple,  and the sun to shine long down the path if only I take the first step.  Plunge into the pool of possibility, straight off the roof like the Princess and the Warrior –no toe dipping to test the waters.  Cultivate the dream.  Yours.  –She did.


Brenda is currently an artist in residence at El Zaguan on Canyon Road in Santa Fe, NM.  Land of enchantment and enchanting it is.  Please contact her for a studio visit or stop by the Historic Santa Fe Foundation.  Art is also available for purchase at www.brendaroper.com.  Her photography graces the cover of the just released 2012 Solstice issue of Cirque.

Posted in Blog, Brenda Roper, Studio Art Also tagged , , , , , |

I Love Lucy. . .a night in T or C

Road-tripping to hot springs, up the down stairs and a rattlesnake across the road on the east side of the Chiricahuas thick and yellow (ish) –me in flip flops decides not to hike the nearby trail though the sycamores beckon.  Not today but later.  A made from Cane Sugar root beer in front of the Portal Cafe.  Windows down music blasting road-tripping to 80 degrees down Hwy 80 and if anyone wants to “adopt” a highway it’s available all the way from Rodeo to Bisbee–why the department of Homeland Security/Border Patrol in their dog catching truck mobiles don’t volunteer is beyond me since they are prowling, parked and lurking the entire route once you get off the I-10 West– but I’m getting ahead of myself.

First stop Truth or Consequences “c’mon down. . .” –Blackstone Hot Springs a lovely oasis in an interesting place 3 hours south of Santa Fe.  Thank you Linda for tuning me in.  Retro renovated motor court motel done good.  I love Lucy is the room I choose.  And she sends her vitameatavegamin love from the red table.  Desi looks on but honestly I never liked him much.

I dance  “into the mystic” giddy in retro heaven.  Happily away from all things known and redundant and worrisome (if only self-induced).  Peace of mind and peace on earth.   Grateful for time.  Travel is good.

In a room where a pink clock keeps time with joyful nostalgia and the possibility of new beginnings.  Wash all your sins away in the deeply organic tub (in the privacy of your own room –yes!!) where healing waters are piped in with a simple flick of the handle.  All the way on or all the way off.  Swoosh and up the wall and everywhere hot water heaven.  Climb in.  Robes provided.  Aesthetic in a most artful way.  Light filters through the thick wooden slats on the window blocking out the Napa Auto garage.  Super moon on the rise.  Private and personal and perfect.  Oddly interesting T or C.  Here are a few images in case you’ve not been.

On the art front. . . I have a thing for these old fashioned chairs one finds all over New Mexico.   I love taking their portraits.  All colorful and fresh, or beaten and battered.  Wide-eyed and witness from Truchas to El Rito to T or C and roundabout this Land of Enchantment.  Watch for a new series of cards at the annual Mother’s Day Open House at 545 Canyon Road.  Santa Fe.  Sunday May 13th from 1 to 4pm.  Sponsored by the Historic Santa Fe Foundation. A self-guided fun filled afternoon.  Please mark your calendars.  I’m in El Zaguan #6 but stop by and say hello to all the Zaguanistas.  Be there or be square.  Though nothing about Santa Fe is straight or level.  Square it is not.  A bit arched but not a perfect circle.  Nothing is exact.   I think this is good.

The wind blows me fresh where I sit today in a turret with views to the beyond.  Somewhere near the borderlands.  Rich with Imagine and Writing by Women of New Mexico.  Two issues of the SUN so far behind.  See you out there on the porch.  In the chair kind of Saturday reading and thinking, and taking photos to mark my path.  Times are changing.  500 miles by car and 1246 miles to love.  It’s a numbers thing.  I request one day less to give me something more –like filling your freezer with tears.  Not the kind of math you find on Wall Street.  Portfolio in the making.  Stay tuned for 1000 steps and how I got lost in the roundabout of Bisbee.  



Posted in Blog, Brenda Roper, Studio Art Also tagged , , , , , |

Deck the Walls: Celebrate Art with the Zaguanistas

painterly photos

Currently I am one of six (6)artists living in the James L. Johnson house at 545 Canyon Road in Santa Fe.  It is a magical place not only because of its location on the historic East side but because of all those feet that have walked through El Zaguan, stood upon the 150 year old floors, slept beneath the 12 foot ceilings, crawled inside their own lives within the ancient adobe walls.  Kiva fireplace, clawfoot tub, long windows fat with a geranium wintering in the high desert sun (well not today) and even french doors that separate my studio from my parlour (bedroom/live room).  Besides the porch swing, garden, orchard and fellow neighbors/friendship art that makes this compound a home, is the benefit of using the “conference room” adjacent to the Historic Santa Fe Foundation office (former Sala in the days of James L. Johnson) as an exhibit space.  Mind you it is not a gallery in the commercial sense but offers an abundance of charm and Santa Fe style that only exenuates the art and the spirit of the artists who present here.   Combine that with the warm energy of community and well our latest exhibit “Deck the Walls” was born.  Deck the WallsAn annual and group holiday show featuring the works of Greg Tweed, Max-Carlos Martinez, Brenda Roper (yours truly), Bethany Orbison, William (Billy) McLane and Adam Eisman.  A beautiful variety of painting, mixed media and photography. Our opening last night was quite fun despite the quietude of Canyon Road.  Holiday lights, farolitos, and a pair of candle sconces welcomed those who ventured through our gates. Nice interludes ensued with art speak &  holiday cheer, organic donuts & eggnog,  hello nice to meet you, and thank you for coming.

Feel free to stop by during the week and don’t be put off by “office” on the front door.  If the gates are open so are we.  Please come in.  I have a selection of handmade artist cards for $5/each and 11″x14″ photos ready for framing for only $45,  plus an abundance of fine original art that might be exactly what you didn’t realize you were looking for.    Deck the Walls this holiday season and celebrate art with the Zaguanistas.

Posted in El Zaguan exhibition, Uncategorized Also tagged , , , , , , , , , , , |

Website & WordPress –what’s a girl to do?

Art ServesAfter my blogging class with three other strong artful women and our leader Melissa White at www.blogshopsantafe.com last weekend I have been driving myself a bit crazy researching both free and premium WordPress themes that will best suit my goal of having a website/blog that I can update and manage on my own –the artist with no HTML (well one dreamweaver class nearly two years ago).  This one is called “Adventure” and is free and great for blogging only I suppose, but I want a portfolio gallery and social plug-ins and the ability to use thumbnails, and a filmstrip for ease of displaying images.  All that color.  Texture.  A few thoughts. About me, contact, new happenings.  Maybe ecommerce — hmmm.  Basically a professional forum for showcasing my art/images that is user friendly.  Here are a few that I’ve jotted down:  ReCapture, Showcase, eGallery (only $19.95), Filtered, Deep Focus, Dandelion, Photosquares 2. . .but I think I’m going to go with Photocrati at $89 with free help for a year and a 30 day trial.  After that help comes with a small annual fee, but I’d probably just go back to my friend Melissa for a little one on one.  Keep it local.

While I’m not a fine art photographer I do include photographs in my art making.  Photocrati is a visual theme but I am finding most gallery themes are geared toward commercial art making –at least in their pitch.  Hmmm.   It was suggested that I “like it” out of the box and I think I do but do I really know what I’m looking at/for as far as features?  Thankfully I have the added advantage of a wild and wonderful tech saavy friend to help get me started as she hands off (points, directs, gives me the controls) to my existing-needs-updating hence the reason for all of this. . . www.brendaroper.com

ArtmattersYes, I know a bit of a boring post but thinking aloud is always helpful in the decision making process.  I welcome comments from artists who have successfully set up a WP format as a user friendly website/blog platform for the html challenged.  

Art matters in this crazy world of excess and not enough and too much and too little and too fast –.

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