Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Becky Pashia, instructor extraordinaire and

Kay Tucker, student pain-in-the-neck

Last Day of Class, ARTichokes, 10557 Mission Road,
Leawood, Kansas

Today I completed my 3rd set of classes at Johnson County's premier
gallery and artist's studio, ARTichokes. This wonderful place was founded by Becky Pashia, Megan Sutherland and Jackie Warren in the Mission Farms area. Who is Becky Pashia? Becky has had her own art business, Motif, for 20 years, creating original paintings for homes and businesses. She has also been dedicated to encouraging creativity in children through her Scribble Shop project, which brings all the visual and fine arts together, and has written many children stories.

Most recently, she has been my instructor, which is quite an undertaking. One day she asked "Kay, why are you sitting there staring at the canvas?" I had chosen a subject that was a real challenge for me, and not being anxious to show what a mistake I had made with that choice, I just sat down. Becky encouraged me, she actually "Fluffed Me Up", enough for me to pick up my brush and get started. Becky teaches you to paint the atmosphere around your subject, you can actually "feel" the weather, the heat, the wind, the humidity in her paintings. That is what I wanted to learn.....so, I put my brush into the paint and started. Here we are, 4 weeks later and I have completed my painting, "Vineyard Haze" shown above.

Starting the first Saturday in February, I will be taking Becky's Abstract class, I'll go early so I have plenty of time to stare at the canvas. I will end up with 4 paintings at the end of the
4 weeks! I am excited!

To check out ARTichokes webpage. go to

First Annual


I've been given the honor of planning the First Annual Somerset Ridge Vineyard's Art in the Vineyard. I am looking for a weekend in July and outstanding paintings from local artists. I'm thinking Becky Pashia, Ada Koch, and Kristin Goering, all of ARTichokes, are my answer. I have spoken to each of them and they think it is a great idea. Each of these amazing artists has wonderful work and can guide me to other artists. I think as soon as they see where I feel the Art in the Vineyard should be held, they will be as excited as I am. I'm thinking Field Trip to the vineyard as soon as the temperature gets above freezing!

Since it is freezing here in Kansas City, here is a soup recipe for these cold winter evenings.

Italian Meatball Soup

serves 10

2 1/4 pounds ground beef
3/4 pound ground pork
6 eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup finely grated Parmesan, plus more for garnishing soup if desired
3/4 cup Italian bread crumbs
3 tablespoons finely chopped garlic
3 teaspoons Italian seasoning
3 teaspoons salt
6 pinches crushed red pepper
6 tablespoons olive oil
1 1/2 cups chopped onion
3/4 cup chopped celery
6 tablespoons tomato paste
3 cans whole tomatoes (14.5-ounce) crushed with your hands, with their juice
10 1/2 cups beef stock or
1 1/2 cups ditalini or other small pasta shape for soups
6 tablespoons chopped fresh basil leaves

1. In a medium mixing bowl combine the ground beef, ground pork, eggs, Parmesan cheese, bread crumbs, 2 tablespoons of the garlic, 1 1/2 teaspoon of the Italian seasoning, 1 1/2 teaspoons of the salt, 3 pinch of crushed red pepper and mix until thoroughly combined.
2. Divide the meat mixture into tablespoons and roll into smooth balls in your hands. Set rolled meatballs aside on a plate or other flat surface.
3. In a large soup pot, heat the olive oil over medium high heat until hot. Add half of the rolled meatballs and cook, stirring occasionally, until browned on all sides, about 4 minutes. Transfer the browned meatballs to a plate and set aside. Brown the remaining meatballs in the same manner and set aside.
4. Add the chopped onion and celery to the pot and cook, stirring, until vegetables are soft, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the remaining teaspoon of minced garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add the tomato paste, tomatoes and their juices, beef broth, 8 cups water, remaining Italian seasoning, remaining salt, 3 pinches of crushed red pepper and stir to combine. Return the meatballs to the soup pot and bring the soup to a boil. Reduce the heat so that the soup just simmers and cook for 30 minutes.
5. Using a spoon, carefully skim any fat that has accumulated on the top of the soup and discard. Add the ditalini to the hot soup, stir well, and cook for 15 minutes, or until the pasta is cooked through. Stir in the chopped basil and serve the soup in wide bowls, garnished with additional grated Parmesan, if desired.

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Ponte Vecchio, Florence, Italy

Ponte Vecchio, Florence, Italy
oil painting by Kay Tucker

Somerset Autumn on Wea Creek

Somerset Autumn on Wea Creek
Oil Painting by Kay Tucker, Private Collection


oil painting by Kay Tucker

Kansas Storm

Kansas Storm
oil painting by Kay Tucker, Private Collection

Watercolor Collage

Watercolor Collage

Tempo al Tempo....All in Good Time

Tempo al Tempo....All in Good Time
48"x36" sculptural painting by Kay Tucker