Shelburne Inspirations, Part 1

I don't typically talk about my day job here, but today I'm dedicating this post to Shelburne Museum to celebrate its annual opening for the summer season.

I'll be the first to admit that I work at really, really cool place. Our collections include everything from a landlocked steamboat to glass canes, quilts to decoys, carriages to carousels, and more. You can read about my curatorial adventures, and those of my co-workers, on the Shelburne Museum Blog. You should also check out Webby's blog, a kid-friendly blog that's replete with crafty ideas.

With such an eclectic collection, I've also found endless inspiration in the Museum's holdings, and several of my prints feature Shelburne objects in one form or another.

Today we'll check out one of those projects: my Christmas friar lobsters.

Around Christmas in 2011, I decided to make friar lobster prints for my co-fellows at the Museum. I asked each on them which object or collection they especially liked at Shelburne Museum, and later created personalized prints for each of them.

Monica, a former Collections Fellow (she's in grad school at the University of Wisconsin now) likes this charming folk painting. It's titled Tinkle, A Cat, and was painted around 1881.

This is a parody of Tinkle, with one of my friar lobsters standing in for the kitty.

Fran, another former Collections Fellow, (and who will be studying historic preservation at UVM), likes Shelburne Museum's massive trivet collection. I thought the spider trivet below was especially striking.

Here's Fran's friar lobster print, with the spider trivet in the background:

Angela, an Education Fellow, likes the quilt collection, so I cut up a botched monotype into a wedding ring quilt pattern for this print:

Paige, the other Education Fellow and my fabulous roommate, likes this Alaska brown bear, which is part of the taxidermy collection. Mrs. Webb, Shelburne Museum's founder, was a big game hunter as well as a collector, and shot this bear in 1939.

And here's my take on the bear:

To me, Shelburne's collections are a goldmine for artists, and the possibilities for creative exploration are nearly infinite.