Windy City

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We just returned from a little trip to Chicago, and I’m still mooning over it. What a great city. First of all, it was kind of our gift to each other for our 20th ANNIVERSARY which we celebrated this month. Obviously, I was a child bride because there’s no freaking way I’m old enough to have done anything for 20 years in a row, right?!

ANYWAYYYYY, we decided to spend a week in Chicago and do touristy things and we were not disappointed. The highlights included a hotel on Michigan Avenue, a Cubs-White Sox game at Comiskey, riding the El, a rooftop lunch and a concert in the park. We did plenty of nerdy things like visit Hemingway’s birthplace and cruise down the Chicago River on an architecture tour, because nerdy is kind of our deal.

We also ate our weight in deep dish pizza and Chicago dogs.

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Our room number was coincidentally our anniversary date!

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They are in the process of building new El stations downtown and I will kind of miss these old ones.

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Bean there, done that.

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Watched the Crosstown Cup, Cubbies v. White Sox. It was sold out and we were lucky to get tickets in the very back row.

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The Ferris wheel at Navy Pier.

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Inception selfies

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My favorite building in Chicago, Marina City.

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The stunning amphitheater at Grant Park where we watched a concert one night.

I crossed off a major bucket list item when I dragged Dr. Rossman out to Oak Park, Illinois to see – dun, dun, dun…Frank Lloyd Wright’s home and studio. The BIRTHPLACE OF PRAIRIE STYLE and the stuff of my design-loving dreams! We took the tour, I got totally weepy and never wanted to leave those perfectly crafted walls. We then opted for the self-guided walking tour through the neighborhood…you know, with one of those recorder-things that plays information through your headphones when you get to each stop. There were about 10 FLW homes on the tour and OMG, drool. As we silently passed others wearing the telltale headphones, Dr. Rossman whispered, “You mean, there are other people like YOU?”

We bought a replica of a Midway Garden Sprite, and had it shipped to our house like responsible adults, even though I just wanted to carry it around like a baby.

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FLW

The children’s playroom in Frank Lloyd Wright’s home. I die.

Our entire decision to go to Chicago was hinged on a brief trip Dr. Rossman took a few years ago for school. He flew into Chicago, took a test, and spent a whole day wandering around the Art Institute of Chicago. He came home raving about it and vowed that he would take me back there someday. So, someday arrived and we spent about 7 hours there. We still didn’t see it all. There are so many drop-dead, gorgeous, famous pieces in there that I don’t know how any other museums have anything. I cried next to Lautrec. I melted next to VanGogh. I gushed over Degas. I took selfies with Warhol.

I couldn’t believe I was allowed in the same room with these things.

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Chicago, I love you. We’ll be back.

Keep the pizza warm for us.

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I wish Dr. Rossman looked at me the way he looks at pizza.

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Italian beef FTW

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I hadn’t even heard of “sport peppers” until this moment.

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I only ate this pistachio old fashioned because it suited my aesthetic.

 

 


Rachael Rossman

 

Rachael Unplugged

19095724_10154377213681199_5245482235823725212_o (1)I’m going on a real live vacation (it’s our 20th Anniversary!) and one of the things I’m going to try desperately to do is UNPLUG.

Now – let’s get real. I love my phone. I love that I can find the answers to trivia we don’t agree on. I love photo documentation. I love instagram. I love communicating primarily by meme. However –  I am going to try my very best to avoid the hustle for one week. I want to secure as many orders as I can this week, then I’m signing off for vacay.

So here’s what I’m gonna do – I am offering half-price custom watercolors until Friday.

Email me at rachaelrossman@earthlink.net to order…I’ll send you an invoice and ba-da-bing I will do my darndest to stay away from all things business-y for one week.

Email me – it’s a smokin’ deal.

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Rachael Rossman

 

#artspo

The museum thoughtfully provided a Selfie Station.

The museum thoughtfully provided a Selfie Station.

Let me begin by saying I didn’t cry.

And I was pretty sure I would. I mean, I am the person who gets choked up at all manner of awards ceremonies, announcements, thank-you speeches, pageants, sports events, commercials…so I was fully expecting to be a bit messy at the Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera exhibit. However, I managed to hold my self together pretty respectably.

Without giving too much away for the folks that are planning on seeing this exhibit (through August) I was pleased to see a few paintings of Frida’s that I was not familiar with, in addition to many sketches and other works. Dr. Rossman preferred Diego’s work, but I told him it’s probably because he doesn’t understand the beautiful torture of being female. He shrugged.

The exhibit, which is on its only North American stop in Phoenix, is glorious. There were many photos of Frida, as well as a gallery of architectural photos taken by her father, Guillermo Kahlo. There was a luscious installation of the traditional clothing Frida favored, as well. One adorable aside: the groups of high school girls on a school trip dressed in Frida garb. OMG cute. That might have made me tear up a bit.

I saw some of the original prints of photos that have been inspiration for my Frida portraits, which was a treat.

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Yes, I wore heels because I like to dress with a sense of occasion.

The Heard Museum itself, is phenomenal. We spent three hours there, until my feet protested. The permanent collection features a compelling exhibit about the history of America’s Indian schools. I love looking at paintings, but my favorite kind of museums feature tableaus of daily life and artifacts. The Indian School exhibit was fantastic and highly recommended. We still have an Indian School in my current city, Salem, so it was especially moving.

There was also an extensive collection of Katsina dolls and jewelry. I drooled over the turquoise.

Dr. Rossman really dug the Rick Bartow exhibit. It was cool because he was from Oregon.

I’m not exactly sure if I will ever see Frida’s work in person again. It’s very possible that this was a once-in-a-lifetime experience, and it was not without gravity. I was struck by the difference in her commissioned work versus the self-portraits and other paintings she did for herself, without restriction or expectation. There is a passion that comes through in work an artist does for no other reason than the need to do it.


Rachael Rossman

 

Frida! Friday!

2015-07-12 18.01.27This week, we are going to Phoenix to see the Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera exhibit at the Heard Museum!

I am so excited I can hardly stand it.

If you follow me on Instagram @rachaelrossman, you can expect tons of photos, probably including some mascara-smeared selfies.

I know it’s just a roomful of paintings, but I’m reminded of something Jenny Lawson once wrote about meeting Neil Gaiman:

“The only thing more terrifying than the thought of never meeting your idols is the thought of them actually having to meet you.”

Word.

In other news, I don’t have many paintings on the books, which means I’m starting to get antsy. That’s good news for you, as I’m offering BUY ONE, GET ONE and special sales prices for custom watercolor portraits!

5×7 (Buy one for $200, get one FREE)

8×10 (Buy one for $400, get one FREE)

Half price on paintings 11×14″ and larger. Regular prices are here.

Email me at rachaelrossman@earthlink.net with orders and inquiries.


Rachael Rossman

 

I’m going to see Frida!

2015-07-16 07.56.14OMG you guys I’m so excited. The Heard Museum in Phoenix is exhibiting Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera and I am going. TO SEE FRIDA. Short of visiting Casa Azul, this is the absolute best. Like, bucket list stuff. To top it off, we’re also planning to visit Taliesin West, Frank Lloyd Wright’s compound in the desert. He’s another one of my design idols and I am pretty sure that by the end of this magical day I will be a full-on puddle of mascara-streaked emotion. Dr. Rossman is already on high alert.

I will be posting photos on Instagram @rachaelrossman, so be prepared for a deluge in mid-May.

If you would like to be a patron of my artistic endeavors, consider placing an order for a custom watercolor. This week, I’m offering 25% off because, FRIDA.

Email me at rachaelrossman@earthlink.net to order.

Now…what am I going to wear????

 


Rachael Rossman