All I Have is Who I am …. Marelle Couture Monday, Jul 20 2020 

All I Have is Who I am …. Marelle Couture

I wrote that, again with my trusty Papermate, on the visor of my old car.  My father had left it to me on his death bed.  In fact, car, was the last word he spoke.  I never got to see him before he died, I was far too ill.  In fact I had been bed ridden for most of the last several years before he passed.  Many of my pieces were created from the comfort of my recliner.  Where there is a will there is a way is something I live by.

I ran an exhibit years ago.  It was a tactile touching experience for the blind to view art in their unique way.  I wrote about it a little bit in my blog post, The Hopscotch Hands on Exhibit for the Blind.  During the set up of my show with the Blind Boys of Alabama , I was taken to the hospital in Wayne NJ.  The van with all the art work in it was left in the Toys R Us parking lot on Route 46 in Totowa.  I made it all the way from Pennsylvania.  I wasn’t feeling well for a long time and had no idea how sick I really was.  The doctor diagnosed me with endocarditis and I was admitted.  It is a very serious heart infection.  Jinxed again, dammit, What to do? I was lucky at that time to have some help.  My brother and his friends got the van and the art work and set up the show.  It was rather funny.  I was on the phone with my brother, the auto mechanic, and he was asking what pieces went with what title cards.  I would describe the painting and they played match game as they set it all up.  God, I miss New Jersey.

My treatment would be 6 weeks of IV antibiotics and bed rest for the duration.  The Bergen Performing Arts Center made room for my show just for the Blind Boys of Alabama and I was honored.  The wait to get in there is very long.  So it surprised me that they asked if they could continue the show for an additional 6 weeks.  Just the time I needed to recover.  Oh, God is so good.  I finally got to see the show when I went to pick up the pieces that didn’t see.  Some of the abstract ones were hung upside down.  It was fantastic and I still consider it my greatest show.

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3D Marilyn Monroe (from the Hopscotch Hands on Exhibit for the Blind)

So here I am starting out with nothing and the desire to paint is so strong.  I love doing murals and painting furniture but I am talking about painting now.  Free flowing gone in the mind and creating in a place the exists not in space or time.  I am talking about my great escape … Fine Art.

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Fashion Week – mixed media

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Pink Dress – mixed media

What to do? With my little paint box and my notebook I just started painting.  Wild, free; bold and angry, mostly. It’s therapeutic and really who cares what it is painted on.  While painting I remembered a Wall Street broker who left his job, moved to the Poconos and started painting landscapes on paper bags.  They were so beautiful.

You can see his work here.  Artist Ed Lopez  What people don’t realize is that some of my most coveted pieces were actually done on cardboard.

Waiting for everything you need is such a waste of time.  I have been waiting for several years just to get back to work.  Now, here I am and the act of painting is just what I need right now.  Gotta get it down and out.  Because I am so angry, such a wasted emotion has set up camp in my yard.

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The Angry Painting

Why so angry you may wonder?  Well, the time came for me to renew my website.  My daughter and I created it in Las Vegas while we were staying in a shelter.  They had a computer lab and we wasted no time.  It really is lovely and funds were given to me to turn it on.  But what I found out is some asshole stole my domain name.  Some brokerage company has purchased it. Someone said it was a compliment that they thought it valuable enough to invest in it.   WT literal F.  I can bid on it and then every year bid again and again and on an on.  So many years and so much work for someone else to hold my reins.  Fuck!

My website

I’m trying to publish my website and someone actually suggested starting anew.  This same person told me to change my name years ago.  I wonder if they would have told that to Tina Turner, who absolutely knew the worth of her name.  I doubt it.

Tina Turner

I’m not lying down and I am not bidding on what is mine.  I am Marelle Couture.  Watch what I do.

To be continued…..

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Little Paint Box Saturday, Jul 18 2020 

The Little Paint Box

The compulsion to create is always present.  A simple window shopping experience can relay into a million plus visuals that are put away for another time.  You can imagine how many visuals several years on the road can provide.  So, as we settle in our new home I set to task some artwork.  It is a simple little table someone gave us and my Papermate Pen worked well on the surface.  I drew what I call tattoos.  Little illustrations like the ones in the Pretty Prison Letters. pppl

When my daughter woke up the next day I showed her my lil table.  She smiled and said it was real nice.  However, what she really thought was it was sad that all I had was a pen.  She didn’t have much money but she used some of it to get me a little acrylic paint set, it came with two little brushes.  She bought it just for the table.  I hadn’t considered putting color on it, I have never colored on any of my tattooed pieces.  I also never did them on furniture before.  I just really liked the look on clothing and purses.  I have no idea what happened to these but I thought they looked pretty.

tattoo jeansb

That night while she was sleeping I started to paint on that table and I am delighted with the results.  I am sure I will be adding to it as time goes on….like I said, it is compulsory.

I did something else with this little box of paints.  I made myself a faux headboard and during the process I realized something.  While I may not be able to purchase anything right now, I certainly can paint whatever I want where I want it.  A B-52 bomber right above my bed there.  Heck I could even have it attacking Mothra or something.  Not too many people can buy that.  I fucking love my mighty little box of paints.  Thank you Lamby!!!!

To  be continued when the B-52 is done.

Envy Thursday, Jul 16 2020 

A sexy sneaky little word that inevitably creeps up on all artists in all mediums and all forums.  There is not much you can do about it expect perhaps to recognize it sooner, if that is even possible.  The clues are sometimes subtle and other times right up in your face but still sometimes you are not sure why.

When I first moved to Pennsylvania I made some acquaintances and was displaying my work locally.  At one location my pieces were hung in the brand new show room along side some pretty sweet rides.  Before that showroom was even fully finished I had my pieces up.  Everyone was very happy with how it looked and all was well.  Except for the one guy, he was a real pill that one.  He started by insulting my work and really going out of his way to be rude.  I shrugged it off as he was having a bad day.  A few weeks later I stop in and the same man is escorting me to his office to show me his art from high school.  He had this stuff all over his work space.  Did he really hate my work? I doubt it but I don’t doubt the fact that he was envious that it was not his work up there.

      Cliffs-mixed media           Inside the Castle Walls

Nevertheless a girl has got to keep it moving….

This has happened a few times, if you read my posts you may have seen the B. Marlow scandal, talk about envy, geesh.  Onward now to Salt Lake City.  I was new to the area and staying in a shelter when I approached the gaming shop.  All I wanted was to paint and his windows were absolutely bare, he couldn’t afford anything.  Good, cause I wasn’t looking for money, just cover my supplies and tell me what you want in your window.  He chose a Pokemon theme for the first one.  It was just before Halloween and I knew the kids would love it, even the ones from the shelter.  Pokemon it is.  I picked up the paint and went to work.  During the time I was there one employee displayed that same rude behavior and even got the girl at the cafe to join in.  Oh they were such a delight.  They actually stole my tote with all the paint and brushes in it, tossed it into the dumpster.  I found that out much later.

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To make this shitty story shorter, the dude liked to draw, he did illustrations and had his own comic developing.  He did have his work displayed in the store and it was very very good.  I told the owner  someone should nominate him for a Geekie or at least have him self submit.  When I was nominated for my Black Queen the publicity was wonderful.  I really thought it would be a great opportunity for this guy to be seen.  He didn’t see it that way and actually decided to paint on the very next window I was to start.  It didn’t work out I really never got to see it and they covered it with a large board.  I don’t know why unless it wouldn’t come off, but things were getting really unruly and I just put my brush down.   Know when to walk away I say.

 The Black Queen on Geekie

I could give you more examples but they really are all similar.  Often times their talent is amazing but perhaps they don’t believe it or the opposite.  They believe they are so great that all eyes must be on them at all times.  You just gotta dodge em all, if only there were green.

The Envy

Relevant Relevant, it is not all Relevant Thursday, Jul 16 2020 

Relevant

The time has come to wake up the links.  They lie dormant with no where to land for years.  It is time to redirect them to the now.  They bounce you see back and forth all to get you to me.  Learning the madness of SEO and relevancy was no fun at all.  While in Salt Lake City I took some coding classes to improve my website.  The library there is amazing and offers free classes for all kinds of things.  These are one on one opportunities to learn from the in the know.  I took advantage of all I could.  I learned that even photos have a link behind them.

It takes quite a bit of left and right brain thinking to create and market well.  I often recommend getting the Artist Market book to get the low down on who is looking for what and how to submit your work to them.  It should be given to every student upon graduation from Art School.

artist market

So what is relevant? It means it must apply somehow to your content.  I can’t just add keywords willy nilly like and I don’t want to miss out on any opportunities either.  Here is the best example I have to take a link when you can, seize that opp.

Here I am with the lovely Lady Lisa Lampanelli.  The purse she is holding is not the one I created for her.  She held mine for the photo.

Me and Lisa

During one of my self searches I found the purse I gave to her years later on the North Shore Animal League website up for auction.  It was broken and the price was very low.  I posted it to let my clients know it was available and with my lifetime repair policy, I would repair it for the new owner.  I remember some fellow designers were upset at the price and how could she give it away and yada yada yada.  I saw it quite differently.  This was a major link to a large well known foundation I could use, for it was relevant.  What she did with the purse was her business and she decided to give it to help the furry ones.  You can’t fault her for that gesture.

Take the good with the bad you just never know what can happen.  When my Marilyn jacket was posted on the Regretsy site I thought it was fantastic.  Not everyone shared my opinion because it was meant to make fun of my work, however it actually led to it’s sale.  Not everyone shares the same opinion and the author of that blog stood alone on that hill.  I thanked them for roasting me, for I had a wonderful time making that sale.

Even the greatest personal tragedies can lead to some good.  It certainly doesn’t change what happened it just offers another path to go down.  Personally I like taking the scenic route.

Starting Over Once Again Monday, Jul 13 2020 

Where to begin again?  My mind is full of all the things I need to do, the people I need to contact and the invitations I need to address.  How does one accept an invitation to a fashion show in Greece or Milan with no work to show.  Even if language was not a barrier do I even wish to explain?  What happened to it all??  No I don’t.


My ideas have always come from within and above, yet with no supplies this is a tough sell even for me.  I have no choice, this is what I do.  It was a gift God trusted me to have and I mustn’t waste it.  So, I lost my son and two homes to black mold, my business and then my way.  It has been over 6 years living homeless for me and my daughter.  Our lives on hold for what felt like an eternity.  Friends and family long gone lost in our sorrow never to return again.  And the abuse all homeless people are subjected to has taken a great toll.  For my sanity, for my security, and for my spirituality I will make this work somehow.  God grant me great strength as I start my climb up this hill.   Supplies, supplies, my kingdom for supplies.

Marelle 7/13/2020

Will Sunday, Nov 18 2018 

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A simple little word, will, yet so hard to muster up at times.  Success is very temporary in the face of great tragedy.  After the death of my son our health continued to decline and eventually an air test revealed what was killing all of us on 59 Division Street.  Nothing could stop what happened and yet no one helped our inevitable loss of everything.  Even my sons’ ashes had to be discarded, contaminated.  We have worked very hard during it all; even sleeping on the streets didn’t deter our determination to find our way back to life.

http://www.marellecouture.com/

When an artist can not create he or she becomes depressed, when depressed an artist can not create.  Another Holiday season is upon us and I wish it to be the last spent in sadness.  My son took his life just before Christmas and my Birthday as well as his.

I am taking this miserable existence and turning it into a Christmas miracle.  We have already made the new website and am setting up the online shop.  It is difficult to ask for help but that is what I have had to do as of late.

There is always hope if you have the will to sustain it.  Will is a mighty word backed by great action if you have the courage to wield it.

Please never give up for if you are an artist you are in the company of God quite often, He whisperers ideas to you all the time.  His will.

Praying for a Miracle

Sir Pied Piper Paul Monday, Feb 15 2016 

The Incredible Sir Pied Piper Paul…..

It is on this day I would like to pay tribute to an amazing man. He does all he can to attend and promote every single art, music, or spoken word gathering of all the poets, painters and musicians in the Poconos. If you want to take in any art form, music, film, a bit of culture perhaps, he is the one that knows all the happenings…Sir Pied Piper of the Poconos my friend Paul. Most simply call him paparazzi Paul. I see him as Much Grander than them all. Selfless and kind, an honor to know. It took me a decade to finally meet him and hug my dear old/ new friend. A decade after he published my story. “Rebecca’s Weary” in his Forwardian (Magazine)

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https://lamarellecouture.wordpress.com/…/rebeccas-weary-an…/

He also works tirelessly on The The Forwardian Arts Society, Forwardian Performing Arts Society, & Films Sought for Forwardian Film Festival he is dedicated to them all.

He asks for nothing, nothing at all. His one wish would be to have his magazine in print for all to see, something tangible for people to hold. He cares not if it is in Black & White or glossy color or gold, just a legacy of years dedication to the arts from deep within his Soul. He deserves so much more. It is my hope that someday he will hand me that first printed copy and I will be well enough to have our first cup of coffee that we have waited so long for. (And geez lueez a new camera please).

THIS IS WHAT I PROPOSE….

For over a decade we have been planning a show, one with my art along side the perfect pairing of his poems…..his written words are sublime, like pieces from another time. They take me back to a time when love letters where written and sealed with melted wax. Cracked open by the recipient to reveal brave words of admiration, loss and true love. He really is a true romantic, a humble man and one of the greatest poets of our time. Not many know that about him, his poems read like something out of a dream. I am so very honored to know you Paul, you will always be in my prayers and my heart.

So, God I ask you on this day, please make this happen in your grand way. I leave it in your hands Lord to pair our talents for many to see. NY is where I wish it to be, but you know best. He is greater, kinder and more selfless than most he promotes. He deserves to no longer simply be known as Paparazzi Paul. For he is Paul Adam Smeltz, the greatest poet of them all. I love you and all you do, in case you thought I forgot about you. My Darling Sir Pied Piper Poet, I honor you.

And to whom ever can make this happen I do vow, I will donate ALL the proceeds of my paintings in half. One half for the Forwardian and the other half to the charity of your choosing. For the one that makes this happen will be making a dream come true. Not just for Paul but for me too. God Bless and thank you…… Marelle

The Divine Destiny of Making Royal Crowns Saturday, Jan 23 2016 

By Marelle Couture

 

It always begins with one single piece.  It may be brass, tarnished silver, broken jewelry, wood, or even glass.  Something catches my eye and the process begins.  Each crown is created in the same way…..every piece of the crown is dependent on the others.  Like dominoes in reverse.

 

For this crown I wanted to create a grand piece of art with many surprises hidden in and around.  Only pieces of age and wisdom, tattered by time and memories are used.  I feel like I am giving a second life to something that had great meaning to someone from long ago.  My hope is that it makes them happy, not forgotten.

crown process

It is a slow process adhering each piece together.  Many different methods are used depending on what materials I am using.  For this crown a special industrial epoxy was used for much of it.  In some cases one single piece would take days for the epoxy to cure before I could continue.

That beautiful beaded bottom fabric was once on a beautiful vintage dress.  All torn and tattered….all but for it’s best feature, the collier.  The little cherub, a milk pitcher, even an old train token.  Anything is fair game.  We have smashed type writers and old clocks that stopped ticking years ago.  And for what?  You know the saying…” You can’t take it with you.”….. but that does not mean a little piece of you can’t live on.  I wonder who the woman was that wore that brass headband or the one who used the upside down thimble holding it in place.  The love that was put into each piece of clothing she sewed or sock she mended, now sits atop a crown of great stature.

crown processa

Old key holes, not ones you can buy at a craft store…no no no.  These you find at salvage yards, estate sales and on it goes.  Do you see the fishing lure on the left?  That was mine from my own tackle box.  It was given to me by my father, I prefer live bait so on the crown it went.  I always always put a lil bit of me in each and every piece I make.  Not just the crowns….in everything.

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The details in this crown are abundant.  The tiny cherub is now surrounded by many new creatures, treasures and he now delicately holds the Blessed Mother charm on his wing.  This is what I wanted when I started this piece.  Surprises from every angle.  The more  you look the more you see.  Many of my pieces have little containers or pill boxes you can open.  Some owners of my work may never even find them….it makes me smile.

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Surprises abound and surround this piece of wearable art.  The furs I use are and always will be vintage. I use torn coats, outdated for some reason or another, shawls, hats, etc.  You may not agree with my reason for using it at all.  That is understandable.  I am and always will be an animal lover.  My father and I use to stop even on highways to grab a turtle, or hurt bird.  Cars flying past us on windy upper part of Route 23, where no one can see what is ahead…all to save a snapper turtle.  I detest animal cruelty in all forms.  I am also a realist….sadly there is a market for fur items.  We all know this, I feel and I pray by using vintage fur, perhaps that is one less animal used for fashion.  I also believe it pays homage to the creature that wore his or her coat with pride.  That is why Hopscotch Couture will never ever use new materials, not fur, not silk, etc.  Not on my watch.

           Heavy is the head that wears the crown…….Wear it well.

 

Photographer Presley Ann
Model Kristina Schroeder
Hair and Makeup by T Cooper Mua

This majestic crown below was created with the same attention to detail.  Like all the crowns before and after this one…..I allow them to become the Divine Destiny of their previous owners…..Decadence by Design.

crown n red

Antique drawer pulls, buttons, and chains.

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Wings from a broken angel that once graced the top of a families Christmas tree.

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Another Brass Beauty…..

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One of my first.  It started out as a vintage beaded headband and the rest was left to circumstance.

These last two are works in progress.  One Brass…One Glass.  I can’t wait to see their Divine Destiny.

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For you see we are all works in progress.  Broken bits here and there, with patina from scars of long ago.  We are ALL here creating our own Divine Destiny.   And we are ALL Decadent by design…just consider the artist that created you.

Marelle Couture

Dream Wednesday, Jun 25 2014 

http://insideetsy.blogspot.com/2011/04/hopscotch-couture.html

 

I would rather spend my whole life chasing an unattainable dream than to live out my days in mere mediocrity.

big crown

Professional Photos of Some of my Pieces Thursday, May 16 2013 

So many fabulous professional photographers have been photographing my pieces with stunning results. Here’s just a few.

This one below was taken by Vanessa Powell and appeared briefly on OMG Insider during a bridal gown segment.

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Vanessa also shot this award winning photo using a Neck Piece of mine as a Head Piece.  I adore this stunning work of art and have it framed in my home…..it is so Blessed.

 

alaska3 To see more of Vanessa Powell,  A Thousand Words Photography check out her page…    A Thousand Words Photography by Vanessa Powell.

Vanessa is currently on another collaboration photo shoot with some of my statement pieces.  I can’t wait to see her new works of art.  She has amazing vision.

 

Other photographers has been amazing me with their vision when shooting some of my accessories.  This one is absolutely my favorite by Anna Nicholas from the UK.  She used my feather sash as a head piece and it looked amazing.  I actually made these into some postcards.  This is why I love having these amazing photographers shoot my pieces, I get so inspired by their work.

 

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And again unique uses for my pieces by the ever so creative Anna…..A feather neck piece turned feather crown.   Statement vintage couture bridal neck piece and Haute Beaded Bridal Hat looking smashing on this fabulous young man.

 

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DSC_9705a  Photo by Anna Nicholas, Hopscotch Couture Bracelet.  To see more of Anna’s Amazing work click here….

http://www.fashionablephotography.co.uk/

 

I will bring you more photos as I can, there are so many stunning ones I know you will enjoy.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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