Monday, April 20, 2009

The Piddlin' Peddler

My confidence has taken a dive.  My emotions have been bouncing up and down like the weather..."life stuff", the bittersweetness of it all.  I'm also wheezing and experiencing some heaviness in my chest so I've had to up the breathing treatments and rest more than I typically do.  I'm always the most vulnerable when the seasons change.  So the few days I've been at the workshop I've piddled.  I seem to have lost the grove for The Poetry Series at the moment...I didn't want to approach it with the funky dragging moods I've been in.  In order to be gracious with myself I thought I would dip and dabble I pulled a book fro the shelf on collage and thought I'd work through it slowly, not with any sense of urgency...afterall, collage really isn't what I do, so whatever I end up with would be okay. 


 While working on this I thought about paper quilts or paper and cloth quilts.  Possibly another piddle day I may quilt this.

On another day, I gave in to re-organizing but really only manage to move clutter from one table to another, so I opted to sit down and read and listen to music...really listen and allow the music to carry me away...I was vibing with jazz violnist Regina Carter.  So that was this past Saturday. 

Today I thought I would play around with free motion embroidery and free motion quilting.  This is very different for me...again, just piddling and practicing.  My flower looks like it has the chickenpox.  Again I was playing Regina Carter and added Herbie Hancock to the mix...I really wanted a bottle of wine to accompany my groove with the sewing machine, but since I drive to come home, that wasn't an option.


 Inconsistency in speed paired with hand control delivers uneven stitching.  I did like the zig-zag stictching with free motion.  The threads I used were Isacord and Madeira.  Isacord really sinks down into the fabric.  Madeira seems to sit more on top.  My machine (Janome 6500) loved them both.

Here are two atc's I had left over and found when I moved my clutter around and if you'd like to trade with me, give me a shout out.   ummm, the image orientation is on its side...oh well, if you make atc's then you already know what size they are, right?!


I canceled going to Paducah next week.  I took a deep breath and called my sister to tell her I just didn't think it was feasible to push going financially in light of some other things I'm trying to cook up.  She kept the reservation and plans on dragging her husband over for 3 days and 2 nights (if I had the strength, I'd fall over laughing...she is optimistic but I really don't think that is going to fly).  We shall see, said the blind man.

Oh, and I the only one who is going wild over the HBO series The No.1 Ladies Detective Agency?  I ordered HBO just to watch this series...a big fan of Jill Scott, no surprise there, but I think its the secretary that makes the show.  Think of Murder, She Wrote with an African flavor.  I could just snatch Jill Scott's wardrobe for the show right off!  Simple, free flowing, yet great sophisticated patterning. I'm also tickled by the cartoon animation for the header and footer of the show so I did a search to find out who was responsible.  Those of you interested in graphic design might enjoy perusing the company's info...Airside

Peace to anyone and everyone who reads here...and as far as replying to comments, I'm going to change and try mainly to reply within the comment section.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Visit Jeanne's Blog

Jeanne Raffer Beck wrote a post on her blog that echoed in my head while I was reading is so identical to my coming in and out of my workshop and my own attempts at creating my own designs with cloth that I wish I could have written it.  You should read it.

Also, if you're a regular blogger, then at some point you ponder over the best way to reply to comments.  Mostly, I answer via email if I have a response to a comment left...there is one blogger in the Art Quilter's Ring that reponds to comments in the post that follows the previous one.  I've also noticed that several bloggers respond to comments within the comment section.  I like the fluidity of dialogue that comes with commenting within comments but also like commenting to emails because it opens up the chance to get to know someone.  Which do you prefer, answer from the perspective of a commentor and/or a blogger.  Maybe I'll pick and choose which is the best way to respond based on the type of comment and what it elicits in me.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Collaborative Arts

Well acclaimed sculptor Ed Hamilton is a native Louisvillian and has remained here.  He is recognized as a living treasure for the city.  He recognizes his gifts as God working through him which makes him very endearing and he loves young people. 

There was an open invitation to the public to an experimental collaboration with his molds and UofL's glass department.  The hot shop is located in the heart of downtown and also houses a gallery.  This was my first time going since UofL opened its own shop/dept. Previously they collaborated with Glassworks for their classes and now have expanded on their own.  I was thrilled that my son wanted to go with me.

DSCN4003 The studio before anyone else arrived.  On the tables to the right in the photo are 2 of Hamilton's molds.  His molds where used to make the molds for the glass, both positive and negative.

In the next picture, the guy has taken out the mold for the glass from the kiln.


The next photo below the head of the department is pouring the hot glass into the mold.


There where benches for us to sit on but people became intrigued with getting as close as possible to see into the molten glass and watching the colour changes that they crowded around as the speaker talked about what was going on...I didn't think it wise to get that close with my oxygen tank...ahhh, the things I sacrifice for fashion.

DSCN4009My son, Ade, is in the foreground (photo to the right).  He was also very mesmerized. 

And in the photo below, Ed Hamilton, wearing the tam which I've never seen him without, is looking on.


After the glass is poured it returns to another kiln where it will stay around 3, 4, or 5 days. 

And talk about ducks outta water, when we left the hot shop and turned the corner these two where walking down the center of the street and cars where swerving around them...they walked like they didn't have a care in the world...we watched them for as long as we could but they were not in a rush at all and still had a four lane street to cross.  They where about a yard from us when I shot the picture.

DSCN4020 And I could have sworn this duck below looked at me and under his breath whisphered "stupid-ass human".


Monday, April 6, 2009

Art meteorology patterns

Schizoid weather patterns!

Yesterday I simply absolutely refused to believe it!  We had a beautiful, gorgeous day yesterday...warm, bright, cheery...the evening turned cloudy and dark and thunderstorms came in...but it was still warm...okay, I was good.  The part I refused to believe was the prediction of snow flurries and the high in the 30's for today.  Denial is not a river in Egypt.  Howling winds and the need to turn on the heat woke me this morning...It is still wet outside and the gray ovecaste remains from yesterday's storm and the snow flurries are still predicted today...damn, I think I'm going into shock!!!!  I'm only relieved and warmed by knowing my fridge is full and thus, no running "survival errands" and the only going out today will be to hang with other textile/fabric friends.

Sankofa bird takes flight.

I finished my little bird and since it was all about playing around, I went ahead and glued it to a canvas (never tried this before) and started 2 more:


I'm digging this little gem and hung it in my workshop.


Working with the inks is definitely about layering them on little by little.  They do blend well but I find it best to dry each layer (by ironing) before adding the next.  And those tiny bottles really have a lot of ink in them and it really is apparent just how much if one spills over on you :)

Update on The Poetry Series

With the mishap of the last quilt that I ended up cutting up into 2 smaller quilts and painting over, I'm weighing what I originally had in mind with the outcomes thus far and how flexible I want to be in changing what I had in mind at the onset...I'm asking myself, am I not excuting correctly due to skill limitations? should I remain open during the process and continue to allow unforeseen outcomes to occur?  if I continue to identify these already completed quilts as part of the poetry series, what makes them so when they have strayed from my original intent?  Even though the outcome and processes stray off, I am still working with intent combined with firmly working out the African American adage of "making a way out of no way" by taking what occurs and bending it back into my will.

This is all fuel for me and while I've been weighing these questions, simultaneously am working on creating the palette of fabrics in reds, yellows, and greens.  I'm still writing on fabric so when the weather breaks firmly into spring-summer temps, I'll be ready to add more layers.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Life is like a 1000 piece puzzle.

Last week I actually sat down and looked over prospectuses for 4 shows and for the first time I have enough work that I would want to submit to without the worry of the shows overlapping.  Now with that said...I'm horrible at being prepared...not wanting to sacrifice any time at the workshop to rearrange to photograph properly and handle the the book is titled I'd Rather be in the Studio doing what makes me happy.  I missed a deadline this past Monday for a local juried show that the Embroidery Guild is sponsoring.  My  goal remains to be in 4 shows a year which means about 12 shows to submit to.  I'm trudging through these marketing books and have enrolled in a short presentation on the subject through the local art association but I'm continuing to question myself on how much commitment I hold towards this aspect.  So I learn a little but question a lot more...if nothing else, I'm committed to understanding the marketing side of art...l'll do what I do and see where the road goes.

Here is the link to the shrimp and grit recipe I used.  I used Alouette brand of cream chesse with garlic and herbs.  My food adventure this week will be to make Arnold Palmer cupcakes

On Monday I free motioned stitched on my little Sankofa bird.  Sorry about the hazy photo, my daily camera is not functioning well (remember it was broken about a year ago).  I'm thinking about moving to a lightweight small camera for daily use and pull out the D40x and finally learn to use it.  Technical learning seems to require me to dig deep down to focus and absorbs all my energies that I've been reluctant to add another thing under the title "something else to do".


My plan from here is to go bead crazy on it since its all for play and the beads just sit there hollering to be used.  I started with these small donuts and plan to fill in the ground with green, brown, and cream coloured sead beads.  The size is 5"x5" and I'm gonna fuse it down on a canvas. 


oh, and here is the puzzle we finished on Sunday...we're waiting for the next one to arrive which is also a Frank Lloyd Wrigt image of various coloured pencils.  Design wise, this kinda puts me in the mind of a Gees Bend quilt...the linear patterning maybe? or kente-clothish?