Monthly Archives: November 2010

teaching portfolio

I took off a couple of hours on Thanksgiving but otherwise, I’ve been working on my teaching portfolio nonstop.  I’m a machine.   After my interview, I’ll be updating my portfolio page on this site.  Things are getting real.

Back to work—



recreational killing spree

The following text is from the National Conservation Training Center at:


Americans keep an estimated 60 million cats as pets. Let’s say each cat kills only one bird a year. That would mean that cats kill over 60 million birds (minimum) each year – more wildlife than any oil spill.

Scientific studies actually show that each year, cats kill hundreds of millions of migratory songbirds. In 1990, researchers estimated that “outdoor” house cats and feral cats were responsible for killing nearly 78 million small mammals and birds annually in the United Kingdom.

University of Wisconsin ornithologist, Dr. Santley Temple estimates that 20-150 million songbirds are killed each year by rural cats in Wisconsin alone.

Feline predation is not “natural.” Cats were domesticated by the ancient Egyptians and taken throughout the world by the Romans. Cats were brought to North America in the 1800’s to control rats. The “tabby” that sits curled up on your couch is not a natural predator and has never been in the natural food chain in the Western Hemisphere.

Cats are a serious threat to fledglings, birds roosting at night and birds on a nest. Research shows that de-clawing cats and bell collars do not prevent them from killing birds and other small animals. For healthy cats and wild birds, cats should not be allowed to roam free.

Work with your local humane society, veterinarians and state wildlife agency to enact and enforce free-roaming cat regulations. For more information:

Free Roaming Cats. American Backyard Bird Society, PO Box 10046, Rockville, MD 20849.

Cats: A Heavy Toll on Songbirds. by Rich Stallcup. Point Reyes Bird Observatory, 4990 Shoreline Hwy., Stinson Beach, CA 94924.

Is there a Killer in Your House? by George Harrison, National Wildlife Magazine (October/November 1992).

Beware of Well-Fed Felines. by Peter Churcher and John Lawton, Natural History Magazine (July 1989).

below:  sketch for House Cat with Dead European Starling surrounded by wreath of Atropa Belladonna, Nikki Jarecki 2010


below:  work in progress, sketch on linen House Cat with Dead European Starling surrounded by wreath of Atropa Belladonna, Nikki Jarecki 2010


Highlights from SOFA & INTUIT SHOW

Pictorial highlights from the two days of visual overload at  the International Exposition of Sculpture Objects and Functional Art:  SOFA & The Center for Intuitive and Outsider Art: Intuit


Weathervanes and Whirligigs

In the Windy City


Sean Erwin

Echoes from the Garden of Eden

porcelain, glaze, mixed media




Geoffrey Gorman’s Wonderful Menagerie!!!



Betsy Youngquist

Beaded creatures & creature dolls

sorry I don’t have the name of this killer artist- anyone???

or this artist- who i remember makes mirrors that are nothing like this but i can’t recall his name—it’s too awesome!!!

Also Featuring

Myopic finds from Saturday

belated mess

belladonna with house cat & european starling

Above:  a mixed media sample for the class I’m teaching and a sketch for my next embroidered piece.

Below:  The set of Detroit at Steppenwolf Theatre –  funny family fun but the majority of the crowd didn’t agree

detroit set at steppenwolf

Also, I went to SOFA twice last weekend.  Once with Liz and once with Branden-

navy pier cartouche

Finally!!!  I finished SERVE — I may want to add another line or two, representing buildings closer to the bear’s legs- for now I need to move on.

embroidery on linen Nikki Jarecki November, 2010

purple line

Tonight I got on the purple line instead of the brown so I decided to get off at Belmont and take a new way home.   On my way, I went to my favorite local bookstore, bookworks to browse their science and nature sections.  Success!!!

I found this jem:  Rats Observations on the History & Habitat of the City’s Most Unwanted Inhabitants- Robert Sullivan


I told the man working that I want to get closer to my Polish roots and I just learned how to pronounce my last name.  He told me the story of how his proud German father told his brother on his deathbed that they maybe Polish.  Bazinga!

I’ll add this to my cookbook collection:  Polish Cookery by Maria Ochorowicz-Monatowa

Book: Impression of Nature

Impressions of Nature – A History of Nature Printing

In this book, author and printing history expert Roderick Cave explores the history of nature printing – the name given to the technique using the surface of a natural object – like a leaf – to produce the print.

The practice was developed in the Middle Ages to help those gathering medicinal plants, and evolved into a serious scientific process used to reproduce plants and build up collections of flora and fauna. During the 19th century, the technique drew on new photographic technology, and today, the long-standing art form continues to interest everyone from botanists to graphic designers and tattoo artists


Cynotype by  Anna Atkins

by the pound


victorian hallway trees

text from the 1800’s



taxidermy eyes


+ some free time (pending) = my current work

Branden’s visit  this weekend and the SOFA exhibition most certainly inspired me to go forward with my jewelry  and chandelier plans.

First step, order wolf eyes from van dyke’s taxidermy supply and then get some of that fake fur from ????  Where did you get your fur for Cardigan Branden???  After sewing my fox last night, I think that I want to work with that.