Friday, February 17, 2017

voltmeter interception voluble

“Give me one friend, just one, who meets the needs of all my varying moods.” – Esther M. Clark

Thanks to one o my squirrel hunters (thanks Bev!), I am now a proud displayer of MRS. PEARL the SQUIRREL, a huge (yuge?) statue near Austin put up by (of course) a pecan candy company.
Outside of Austin, Texas, off of an uneventful stretch of Highway 71, sits a U-turn worthy site for the squirrel worshiper in us all.  From Atlas Obscura, my kind of folks!  A little further looking and I found more pictures:

Looks just like I thought Texas should.

I've had a sick guy here all week, just a cold but enough to send me scurrying for the studio to get out of sneeze range.  If I stick around I 'interrupt' naps and get sticky as a short order cook, dog walker, mail retriever, phone answerer and all that stuff.  So I took advantage and actually now I have his cold anyway.  I never get colds so I am really feeling sorry for myself.  Still mobile though, not gonna sit and watch Netflix all week.

So, in all that time hanging out in my cement bunker, I haven't had to turn on the AC at all, even with the sun beating down, so I've really enjoyed listening to all my podcasts without having to turn it up to mask the whirring.  I've done a bunch more work on the new piece, mostly cutting shapes to fill in holes, getting things flat and straight, and making some sad decisions to back it up and return to simpler.  Always a problem for me.
I received my fabric order from Marcy Tilton and love all I got, but it is supposed to be for some summer tops.  Instead I've been borrowing a chunk here, a sliver there and using it on the wall pieces.  Whatever works is fair game, right?  I also did a little eBay shopping and bought a blouse by my favorite designer that has recently gone out of business.  The blouse wasn't as advertised, and whoever sold it had made some modifications that I had to undo-  she had added some tucks and darts.  Anyway, I pretty much hated it with the opened seams showing-  the fabric didn't cooperate and her machine broke a lot of threads so all my undoing showed.  Instead I used it to make a pattern, change it MY way, and used some of the cool linen printed with scribbled trees.  Now I only have scraps of that left- had to use the fabric right side up with the darn tree pattern.  

This week was the Play for Pink fundraiser for breast cancer and I took part for the first time since it was also my BFF's birthday.  She died in 2000 after a ten year fight and I still think of her every day.  She raised two wonderful sons by herself and was an amazing woman.  So, between that and Planned Parenthood my charities are taken care of for this year.  Here's my new celebratory shirt:

Time for a little geometric interlude...

Today is the Palm Beach Fine Crafts Fair and I am just waiting for it to open before I head out to the convention center.  This year I am going alone so I can see what I want to see and talk to the artists without annoying my entourage, or stand tapping my foot waiting for somebody else to try on and buy something.  
These chairs had me drooling on the floor-  made by a guy in GA and he told me he would drop them off at my house on his way back home if I bought them.  I would have if I had a fatter wallet-  but they were out of my range.  Believe it or not they were extremely comfortable and I loved the rust patina. Hope he's back so I can sit in them again!

I am very quick moving through the shows, only stop at things that catch my fancy-  and believe me, there are plenty of them!  I'm looking forward to it and have my free pass ready to pull!  I should get back in time to put in an hour or two at the studio before going home to the housewifery duties.

And tomorrow is another outdoor show, a big one, Artigras, so I hope to hit that one too.  I used to volunteer for them, booth sitting, fetching things, milling about but the last time I did it the temperature was so high I thought I was going to expire.  Now I go and leave at will but I sure hate to miss it-  there's always something good!  Actually both shows are all weekend so I do have time to get to both-  I might even scare up a friend for the second show.  

So, quick as a bunny on fire, here's the ARTY PARTY for the day!

We continue to be enthralled by the work of Chloe Giordano (previously here and here) who produces everything from tiny coin-sized depictions of woodland creatures to entire book covers typography and all. The Oxford-based illustrator is entirely self-taught, learning her craft “through a lot of trying things out and messing them up.” Each piece is deeply connected to her pencil drawings, as she works out many of the details on paper before turning to thread. Giordano frequently fields questions on her Tumblr and you can follow more of her progress on Instagram.

And with that, it's time to leave.  Hope you all have a great Presidents weekend-  just think of your favorite PAST president to get through it.  Maybe one who wasn't mentally ill.

Saturday, February 11, 2017

counterattack intensify counterbalance

“I wish to hear the silence of the night, for the silence is 
something positive and to be heard.”   Henry David Thoreau

Dare I say, black squirrels matter too.  Reminds me that I need a pedicure.

It's progressing but slowly, hope it won't be one of those perpetually 'in progress' pieces!  Once I removed this from the wall to continue with still more handwork , I had a huge blank space~ so look what magically appeared for me to MACHINE sew, yeaaa!  

New piece in motion, working title:
So, the other day as I was leaving the studio after cleaning out my giant plastic tub of handprints and Spoonflower prints, I happened upon a 
yard, +/-, of fabric I had printed from my Tidepool quilts-  see one of the original 14" circles almost dead center on the bottom third here.  Then I happened upon another handprint of rust so stuck them on the wall thinking I may make a tee-shirt blouse. Then there was another original printed piece from lordknowswhere and so on and so on until I built the 
piece here on the top.  My 'rule' for this one is that it is all handmade prints from as many sources that work.  So far the only commercial print is from a cool linen dress I cut up- because of course I had never worn it and it was perfect.  Yesterday I spent the day refining, see the try-out rejects on both sides, and away I go.  headed now to the studio to sew until I have to wind bobbins-  I have used up most on the first piece  which I am calling HURRICANE GATES-  still MUCH to do on that as I have gotten to the blowing branches part that is daunting to sew down!  

Hmmm, they sure look like they came from the same paint pot, don't they?  Funny how you can recognize a favorite color palette, isn't it?  

In between a bit of enthusiasm for the studio again, I am waiting for a pathology report on dear Pepper, the odd dog.  I found a big lump on his left front paw arm and have been checking him every few days until I was sure it's growing.  I got him to the vet who aspirated it and found 'suspicious cells' so off the sample went to the pathologist.  Deja vu-  we went through this with a lump on his right front 'arm' a few years ago and it turned out to be OK after a very complicated operation to untangle and remove it- so fingers are crossed here the this one is OK and that $100 bills start sprouting on my palm trees. 
Please don't pray for him, but a positive thought put out to the universe couldn't hurt! He's a wonderful old guy who adores everybody.  
So that's one critter I want to keep, and in the Rat News it looks like I coaxed one to move out-  no evidence of the interloper since the pest guy visited. 

 One glue trap, still empty and it was baited with the apparent fave rat treat, a Slim-Jim.  Who knew?  Not like I have Slim-Jim around attracting them.  I'm not complaining yet, a neighbor had a rat and spent $5000 fumigating her whole house.  My sticky trap was a few bucks, results the same.  These tree rats are almost cute, just don't want them in my house.


Maciej Dakowicz, street photographs from India.  'Most people say that street photography features people photographed public places in candid, un-posed situations. In my opinion this definition is too broad as it includes portraiture, travel or editorial photography, which might have nothing to do with the genre. Thus, the definition can be refined to define proper street photography by adding just one word – “a twist”. A little twist – something clever, funny, unexpected, surprising or ambiguous. Something making you scratch your head, putting a smile on your face or simply making you say “nice…” So you can also say, that street photography is changing ordinary things into extraordinary through the act of photographing them. And a street photo does not have to be taken literally in the street – it can be shot indoors, on the beach or in the forest, at any place where photographers can take candid, unposed pictures. But what matters is that little “twist” elevating the photo to a different level. Unfortunately, these twists do not come often. So I don’t call myself a street photographer. I am just a photographer who sometimes manages to take a street photograph.'

Sunday, February 05, 2017

siliceous otherworld otherworldly

“If you perceive the universe as being a universe of abundance, then it will be. If you think of the universe as one of scarcity, then it will be,”  graphic designer Milton Glaser 

Not a squirrel.

Nope, it's a different kinda animal.  Remember a few weeks ago I said my stove was clanging and banging like there were elves cooking dinner in there?  It would come and go and I would just bang on the front and it would become dead silence.  I thought the metal was expanding or contacting with the heat and or cold.  And ignored it because a few days later it stopped.  After about a week I noticed there was some fiberfill (being a quilter...) scattered around the stove front so queried the canines for what they had shredded for me.  They assured me it wasn't them, I then decided I had dragged in a scrap of fiberfill on my pants cuff when I was at the studio.  But then, the next morning, there was lots more!

I turned on the oven, heard clanging and banging again and saw a gray something-  fatter than a mouse (being from New England and living in an very old Victorian I am well familiar with mouses!) scurry along the baseboard under the cabinets.  And before he finished his scurry into the nether regions, I was on the phone with my pest control guy.  

He was here in a shot and informed me that there are NO mice east of I-95 where we are.  No mice he repeated.  I said "but I saw him- he was really BIG". He repeated "no mice...".  Oh.  OH!  OH SHIT!!!.  Yup, he diagnosed it as a tree rat which apparently infects every house here at some point but people don't talk abut it because it's A RAT!   He set traps, filled in an access hole he found somewhat near the stove wall outside, and stuck one of those sticky traps under the stove where he had apparently been using it as his public bathroom.  That was several days ago and my first thing I do every morning is to get down with my head on the floor to see if he's stuck in the goo the pesty guy left.  So far so good.  I think the foam stuff in the access hole did the trick.  I hope.

So far I haven't noticed any Bubonic Plague symptoms.  And I am super pissed at my dogs who seem oblivious.  I now understand the Facebook thing about cats-  all those people have rats and the cats keep them at bay.  Right?  Of course nobody will admit it.
  see why?

HA-  Bet you have a hard time erasing that memory.  And that will also probably stop any of you who were thinking of visiting this winter to change plans.

To change the subject finally:  Here's my dad with his 28/29 Model A Ford.  he bought it used in the late 30's and drove it back and forth on gravel roads in the dead of winter across the Rockies to see my mother.  they dated from the time he was 15 or so and they were married at 20.  I simply can't get my head around being married at 20.  OK, I have trouble with 30 or 40 too but that's just me.
Swede, about 1938.  Fast forward to 1958 when he found a burned out Model A in an Ontario barn and towed it home to fix up.  It turned into a long term project and meanwhile I turned 16 and 'helped' by driving it around town as it was being restored.  By 1966 it was sold to pay for my and my brother's college.  And I have longed for it ever since.

The cool thing is that in my Industrial Park where my studio is, there are LOTS of car guys and I've seen one or two of these being worked on but now they are 89 years old, not 30.  ANYWAY, the reason I am posting this picture of my dad is that yesterday was his birth date and he would have been 99 years old.  This to me is amazing.  I have him frozen in my head as the guy who walked the length of our ranch house on his hands, a feat my mother wasn't at all in awe of.

How 'bout I at least mention art?  With all the big game hunting here, I didn't spend nearly enough time at the studio.  It might have to do with finally realizing that there was no way one earth I could have entered it into the 2 shows I was hoping for, so production went down and I fooled around with a few other repairs and piddly things in between working on the quilt-that-isn't-a-quilt.  Yup, I simply gave up trying.  But I WILL finish it up and entered in the next appropriate show.  I also am way behind getting my monthly quilt out to the Altered Book Folks too.  Never thought retirement meant I would have so little time!

Lets grab a quick ARTY PART before I give in to an afternoon of watching Super Bowl ads-  this little performance art piece hits me a bit close to home after sending off this nine boxes of quilts to Lowell!  But it's genius to see what happens~

In this intriguing sculptural series spanning 2005 to 2014, LA-based artist Walead Beshty packaged his artworks in FedEx boxes and shipped them across the country to exhibitions and galleries. But unlike most artists who utilize every bit of care to protect and pad their artwork from the inevitable rough handling of mail carriers, Beshty designed his pieces to break. For his famous FedEx works he constructed laminate glass objects that fit seamlessly within the dimensions of standard size shipping boxes. Through the “normal” handling the objects would inevitably crack and shatter and it was up to curators and gallerists to carefully remove each piece for display. The fragile volumes were then given titles that specifically mention the date, tracking number, and box size of shipment.

OK, I have to go cook up some sausage for the Super Bowl, TY is out with his pals and will be home soon-  told me he is taping the game so I don't think I can change the channel.  Might have to go knit in a bar.

               Go Pats!  Too bad Trump has announced you are his team.  
          And that leads me to say that I won't be too upset if Atlanta wins!

Sunday, January 29, 2017

voice voiceband void

There are two theories to arguing with a woman. Neither works. 
Will Rogers

A herd of squirrel babies!

What happens to time?  Cannot believe I have been silent a week now, you'd think my arms were in traction or something.  But no, it's my brain that is not functioning the way it should.  I've been in the studio most days, at least for a short time but there is always something else I have to be doing or handling or getting ready for.  This week TY had a guy here for golf so he needed attention and it also involved a bit more eating out than usual.  Unfortunately his last day was today and we woke up to 40 degree temps and rain. So he went home early and the golf was cancelled for the day. 

As soon as he headed home Ralph cranked up the hottub and in we went sitting there in the cold rain-  it was wonderful, enjoyed it more than any other time I was in, except for the time we saw the Great Horned Owls watching us at dusk.  Worth every penny!

First of the week's worth of happenin' things, the opening of our show at the the New England Quilt Museum was amazing.  They started out putting 30 chairs in the classroom for the little talk of 10 minutes from the three of us who were able to be there.  By the time it was Showtime, every employee and volunteer was toting chairs in until the room was full with only standing in the back left.  We had over 100 people there and it was a great success.  Here are Judy Becker, Carol Grotrian, and Sylvia Einstein at the beginning, before being overwhelmed with questions and congratulations:

I believe that's a SAQA show in the classroom background-  something about the spice trade, sorry I don't know the particulars since I've been so involved with our own.

 I SHOULD be at the studio but it's Sunday and I really don't like being in the industrial park all by myself since I heard the gunshots a couple of weeks ago.  I have never felt nervous about being there but like it better when the car guy is across the parking lot or I see the painter's lights on and pan flute wafting up over his studio.  This is new for me-  when I moved in I had a Christian rock band from some church practicing next door on Sundays.  They were pretty good, funny young kids decorated with safety pins and black hair dye who didn't throw beer bottles or joints around the parking lot-  only an occasional water bottle rolled around.  Anyway, that guy sold his business so there's no busy loud Sunday stuff going on any more.  Just quiet slow stuff. Applique.  Not much slower or quieter than that.  Sigh.
Some previews of details of the current thing:
on the wall-  first time-  have to work on this on my table and it hangs over the edges, so I hadn't seen it
Don't quite know what's going on, do ya?  All will be revealed, grasshoppers.  As soon as I know what the hell I'm doing myself!  Anyway, my fingers can only take so long working through the canvas so I take breaks and work on other more manageable sized stuff.  I am currently in a collaboration with 9 other artists where we make and exchange pieces every month with each other.  The first round was fun and was pretty much book oriented.  This second round is about whatever we want to do so I decided I was gonna make series using only old stuff I thought so friggin' precious when I got it that I never used it.  Talk about ridiculous!  Anyway, this is using Merimekko from the late 60's, early 70's.  I found an entire bolt of the stuff that I shared with my crit group and appeared in several of their pieces, mostly Sylvia's because she is really into bright colors.  The rest came from Crate and Barrel outlets that used to decorate the store with lengths-  I'd always buy the non-bright lengths and hoard them.  Now I must divest of these things I really no longer love. So I am making my pages to send around the country all of stuff I don't love.  These are the backgrounds and now I need to individualize each with something else I don't care about-  remember I have bins and bins of it!  In the photo above you can see my fabric situation-  these are only 2 out of the five shelf units which are also topped with plastic bins 3 deep.  

There are times I wish I were an arsonist.  But it isn't like I want to get rid of a body or evidence or something like that-  I want to get rid of STUFF.  Don't call the Jupiter fire department on me yet, first I need to try to use more up or dump it!  
SO unlike me... but wait.  It needs to be bejeweled...

ARTY PARTY TIME, heigh ho.

For more than 20 years photographer Daniel Ranalli has been actively collaborating with the ecology of Cape Cod, with one of his most collaborative projects being his Snail Drawing series. The works each contain two images, the first capturing the snails in a simplified pattern of Ranalli’s choosing on the beach, and the second showcasing the ways the snails have decided to move out of this neatly formed configuration. The second image allows the viewer to see the trace of the snail’s movement in the sand, the small bodies slowly scattering away from center.  Click on his link to a YouTube showing how it's done.
So cool, heh?

And with that, I will head off to the current knitting and relearn Kitchener stitch since it's been a long time since I used it-  want this project closed up and  finished once and for all.  It's the yarn's second chance so it damn well better show me some respect when I can finally try it on.

Prod me to work on the blog a bit too.  I get lazy.


Sunday, January 22, 2017

osprey sign osseous

If art is to nourish the roots of our culture, society must set the artist free to follow his vision wherever it takes him.  John F. Kennedy

Squirrel after removing his pink hat.

Me, after never having put on a pink hat.

What a day, what a day.  Loved seeing the streams of marchers from every city being broadcast from helicopters-  what a day for helicopter pilots!  OK, now please tell me what was accomplished by that exercise besides people making a whole lot of money off the folks who showed up?
food, meals and snacks
plane and  helicopter pilots
bad bad plastic bottled water
bus drivers
yarn stores, pattern makers, fast knitters
garbage pickup
new sneakers, gloves, pink travel bags
poster board, brushes, markers, paint
etc. etc. etc.

I just think from my currently lofty, and getting loftier, age bracket that perhaps, just perhaps, it was a day late and a dollar short.  Why wasn't this gigantic meet-up done before the election?  Why didn't both parties put up winning candidates?  Why didn't all those people vote instead of playing dress-up?  This SO reminds me of the carrying on that happens at the big quilt consortiums where the bunny hop appears, grown-ass women come in costumes and tiaras-  yeah, you heard me- TIARAS!  They play games, they win prizes, they sing camp songs, they bond. It's a perfect 6 year olds birthday except they don't play princess any longer` if their mothers are doing it right- they come in astronaut helmets.

OK, I didn't march anywhere, not even on the treadmill.  Fitbit-aphobe.  I did read a great article, posted it on Facebook and got TWO responses, not much of a call for pithy I guess, folks sending selfies of their faces crammed into pink hats to show they belong to the right tribe...
I cannot find my tribe, but I know for sure it doesn't involve signing internet petitions or calling dead land lines looking for a congressman.  And my tribe doesn't wear clothes referring to pussies of any kind.

Look here, they said I'd never use geometry after I got out of 10th grade!

Went to the Farmer's Market this morning early, got another Vanda Orchid, this time a giant showy yellow one.  There were 4 of us who went and we bought 5 of these gorgeous things,
  they are the ones that have hanging roots sometimes 5' long.  Anyway, the car was really small and we were all holding onto at least one of them along with our bags of produce and my own dozen eggs.  Somehow we got it all home. Tonight I get to eat ribs...  a perfect food for a football game.

I was too tired when I got home to go back to the studio so I did a few things around home with all the food I bought, and then had a brilliant (!) little plan for the new piece.  All in all I overbought and will somehow deal with the dozen little eggplants I got because they were so CUTE.  WTF?  I don't even like eggplant all that much but was thinking of imam byaldi I guess.  Will add that to my to-do list.

I may get the whole new piece up on the design wall soon so I can take a picture, but for now I need it to be flat for the handwork and easy moving of the elements.  I have no plan for entering it into anything, just a need to DO it and it feels so good to be thinking like this again.  If I finish it soon I may be able to slide it along to a show if it fits-  if not I have a wall...

So, it's ARTY PARTY time again, isn't it?

It would not surprise me to learn that Polish street photographer Maciej Dakowicz has run out of available pages in his passport. Currently based in Mumbai, the computer science PhD abandoned a career in technology to instead focus on his street photography, a decision that has lead him to far-flung communities around the globe seeking incredible once-in-a-lifetime encounters. Sorting through his staggering library of some 5,500 photos is to take a journey through vastly differening cultures, miraculous visual coincidences, and impropable moments in time both amusing and terrifying.

OK Bunnies, that's all I have.  Hope that tomorrow brings a good studio day!