Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Meeting deadlines

okay, I have at least 3 coming in October, one in November, and one in January.  I'm infamous for missing them because I can't work as fast as my head finishes a piece and secondly, because I don't hold to a strong dictate of what I'm going to do when in the studio.  Like last week, I had every intent of picking something back up when I arrived.  The world was feeling different for me the day after Davis' execution.   Also, I was in the middle of reading a enthralling travel book on a woman's journey to West Africa in search of Indigo and it's meaning, Indigo: In Search of the Color that Seduced the World by Catherine E. McKinley.   It was both of these I believe that came to bear on a change of plans.

Now what I had observed about myself that day was I was moving slower and quietly both physically and mentally. Shortly after I arrived at the studio a certain phrase came to me and held me spell bound and I chose to follow it in cloth and ended up starting a whole new piece, and thus far, I'm very pleased with it.  The size is large, for me, and I'm wondering if I can have it ready for one of the looming deadlines...maybe I should change deadline to lifeline...meeting it could mean a whole new life for a piece of art.  

This week I played around with video taping in the studio...I think I need one of those twisty style tripods.  So far my camera man (youngest son) hasn't been convinced of all the exciting things that I do while at Mellwood and hasn't jumped at the chance to film me.   I mean what 20 year man wouldn't want to party like this!?


 dye painted cloth wrapped in newspaper waiting to be steamed

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

I believe

that the key to nuturing faith is finding joy and having fun and gratitude...but the flip side of that nuturing is also to recognize pain and wrong when it shows up and shows out and today at 11:08pm the state of Georgia in the U.S. of A. was wrong.

I am Troy Davis.

It was a smoky black indigo day...

Yesterday was a really looonnnnnnngggg day...I was out for over 12 hours straight.  After taking my oldest grandson, Adrian, to his school bus, I kept going and a headed to the studio, (by 1:00 I was ready for a nap and thought about my comfy chair which I miss).  I worked on trying to redeem my bruised ego from last week's disappointments.  I started 3 new cloths and reached the point were I was ready to steam them before going any further.   Here they are wrapped in newspaper with the ones I did last week and forming a sculpture in the window...

DSCN2637 DSCN2635

While I was there Petra called me to remind me of a presentation at The Filson Historical Society that started at 6 which I thought was going to be on Thursday.  My shirt was filled with dye stains. Petra lives close to Mellwood and the presentation was also not far away.  Petra agreed to loan me a shirt to keep me from having to go all the way home.  So I stayed at Mellwood until 5 and headed to the presentation...Two Centuries of Black Louisville: A Photographic History.  These 3 authors are powerhouses alone in their respective fields and the book represents 15-20 years of research on their individual efforts and 5 years of working on the book collectively.  

After the presentation Petra treated me to dinner at Smoketown USA.  A place I kept promising myself to go to but have never tried, mainly because it is not in a high visibility area.  But the food was good, the joint was crowded for a Tuesday night, and the back room is a yard sale room where you can purchase other people's junk that you don't need.  Cool.  

I'm not sure if I'm going to the studio today...the spirit is willing but the body is weak.  I might just stay home and curl up with my laptop to read a downloaded book, Indigo: In Search of the Color that Seduced the World, by Catherine E. McKinley.  


The Birthday Boy


There is something about turning 3 that looses that baby essence and entering little boyhood.  He is shedding his baby pudginess and sprouting taller and fits less comfortably in Nana's lap...


Dinosaurs are his newest interest.  

We had cake and ice cream on his actual birthday and then Ms. Sharonda threw him a party on Saturday.  


The party crew...cause this is the way we roll!



Thursday, September 15, 2011

I just couldn't make it happen today

I had a lazy vibe and it showed up in my attempts today...nothing was falling like I envisioned it...the best I did was like this colour combination....but the lazy practice resulted in dye spots where I didn't want them...


this view (above) is the cleanest section of the cloth. The next one was an attempt to use up dye I didn't want to throw out...but again, my print table was too saturated and needed changing, so dye spots appear where I didn't want them...


I used a foam cup to stamp...and crazy enough, it wasn't as much fun as using the toilet paper insert...

So after these 2 blahs, I thought I would do an old stand-by technique of writing on fabric...but that didn't go well either...


Of course, all this rigamarolling means I'll be in trying to save them mode for the next few days...maybe I should just put them away and start anew.


Wednesday, September 14, 2011

I think I know who she will become...


I started this sketch by looking at a photo, but as I continue to flesh her out, she is taking on her own life and although I thought this was just a sketch practice, it came to me today while she was peaking at me through the white cloth drying on the clothes line, that she is to go into a quilt I roughly scribbled last year.  A quilt design I did after perusing through a book of Romare Bearden's work.  We shall see said the blind man...we shall see....

And this is a shout out of thanks to the impromptu artist-visitor, Tommy, who popped into my studio and took the time to share what I consider in-depth pointers to give her more dimension.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Hear me and remind me what I said...

about 9 months from now...I'm going to take a leap of faith and get a booth next year for Mellwood's September Art Fair.  There. I said it aloud and wrote it in the blog, so it has to happen!  Last year, being a newbie to Mellwood, it didn't make sense to me to pay for a both and I ended up being thrilled with the visitors and sales.  But the bulk of the crowd is outside and in the event room specifically set-up for the fair.

This weekend was slower than last year's, but overall I still enjoyed it quite a lot.  Any time I get to talk to visitors about what I do in my studio I count it as a great day!  Selling one of my favorite pieces made it superbulous!  Aubergine Apple has found a new home.  The lady came in and knew exactly what she wanted without hesitation.  I was dye painting a piece and had paint all over my hands so I was being cautious not to get it on her or  the piece, but on the inside I was like "wow, she gets me, she really really gets me".


This was Aimee's, (studio mate), first fair.  She was there on Saturday and received a commission from Abraham Lincoln! I kid you not!  He and his wife (Mary Todd Lincoln) go into the schools as impersonators to teach...and he was looking for an artist to illustrate their presentations. Aimee is a history major and her father does similiar historical enactments!  She was the only artist he actually stopped to talk to!  Is that not fate, sychronicity, destiny, or what!!!?!!!!  I love it when life reveals to us that we are suppose to show up exactly when we show up and immediately know why! 

Friday, September 2, 2011

Just hanging out doing my thang...

Can you believe it is September already?  If you been with me through that season which I'll not call, you know how it is soooo not me! But enough of that rushing away the days!

Here is the progression of my sketch...

I can only do a little at a time before I start loosing focus.  It was the first thing I attended to yesterday after arriving and after about, oh I'm guessing, 20 minutes, I had to stop because I could'nt think of where to go next.  It is good for me to return with fresh eyes before I continue to draw on it.

I walked through the complex yesterday like I do at least every few weeks or so and met the weaver, Stephanie, and Cathy, another textile person, (that makes 4 new textile tenants all within the month!) who works with repurposing cashmere.  New tenants always brings renewed energy but it is super special and personal for me when they are textile folks :)

Yesterday's time in the studio ended with more toilet paper roll stamping.  


The ozone alert is too high for me today so as much as I want to push it, I'll hangeth back and veg out on movies and reading and making beef and bean enchiladas and mexican rice and salad for dinner today.   And yall enjoy the weekend!