Saturday, December 29, 2012

This is how a spend a lot of the time between holidays

Maybe it is the solstice, maybe it is some sort of muscle memory in my brain from when we all were hunter gatherers, but this time of year always inspires me to ponder what the next steps will be on everything I am doing.  As you can see, I have company while I do this.  What you can't see are the two on the floor who are hoping that despite what it appears, there are food crumbs about to land near them...

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Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Out there somewhere is a bridge

and right here is a small pile of snow..... SNOW people, there was supposed to be maybe rain, MAYBE rain, and maybe not even that.  I swear that to be a weatherperson in NYC all you have to do is pretend and wave your arms in front of a blue screen.  THIS IS SNOW!

with two dogs, this is a major event, and since it is the first of the season I really don't know which shoes/boots are the least slippery in snow and still have not figured out how to get two sets of 4 each of those little booties things that keep their feet out of the salt.  I want you to think how I am going to get 8 of these on paws, as well as shoes on me and a coat and a scarf and mitts and keys etc etc etc when Tinta is just barely making it out the door without peeing in the hall.

I am especially fond of this particular listing on Amazon because it says the original price for these suckers is $1700!

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Sunday, November 11, 2012

My latest Sketchbook, Journal... whatever

My favorite enabler has talked several times about her wire binder, the Cinch.  I finally fell off the wagon and got one.  I was having a crisis because I had a LOT of sewing to do and I wanted some of it to happen really quickly.  When I say sewing I do NOT mean clothes.  (Something for which all who know me are happy.)  I mean sewing coptic stitch binding that I have used on my Music Journal. 

My pages there are made by scrapeing acrylic paint deeply into paper and then adding more and taking some of it away.  The lovely thing about the method is that the pages do NOT stick together and the paper has a great feel to it.  I learned this from L. K. Ludwig in my favorite journaling/bookmaking book  Creative Wildfire.  Her other books are really good also, this is just my favorite one for this kind of journal.  She is really one of my art heroes. You can see some of the pages in my music journal here....  The link is to my Pinterest Board, just for variety.

OK, so you can see that these are densely colored pages and the whole book is very richly colored.  I played around with some acrylic inks the other day and because they soak into the pages very quickly I had a lot more white space on the page than I was used to and they didn't fit with the pages I had already made for another journal like the music one.  Those are the pages are sitting around waiting to be sewn. 

That enormous digression is to explain what led me use the acrylic ink pages to make a Cinch journal with a leftover binder coil from an old journal that I dismantled the other day.  It AMAZES me that the Cinch people do not include even ONE binding coil with the machine... NOT ONE!!!

front cover

other cover

some sort of random pages

Now I have to decide what I am going to use it for!
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Saturday, November 10, 2012

October Calendar

I started doing something in this calendar every day back in January.  I did sketches for a while of what I saw out my window, which is the Hudson River just above the George Washington Bridge.  January, February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September and now October.  As you can see, I have moved a long way from what I see out my window....

I divided these day spaces in half and did 2 little drawings, doodles, whatever you call them, every day.  
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Monday, October 29, 2012

So far, this is Hurricane Sandy up here

This is the Hudson River, about 8 miles from the ocean!  I have never seen whitecaps like this on the river.  We get a few every now and then, but this is pretty roiled up.  The wind out of New Jersey is really blowing.  Fortunately, though my windows face New Jersey and they are wriggling in their frames, where I have to get out of the building to walk the dogs is on the other side, so the wind is blocked by the building.

Interesting to note, the Sanitation dept. picked up all the trash cans, so I had to bring "the evidence" home with me!  Living in New York City is a new trip every day.

 This is what the river looks like on a "normal" day...  
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Thursday, October 4, 2012

Somedays, after dark

 my neighborhood looks a lot like Paris, doesn't it?
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Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Only in New York City

can you come up out of the subway and encounter a fashion shoot on the corner...

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Monday, October 1, 2012

hoarding again.....

These cardboard forms came inside my last / latest purchase of Danskos.  I just thought they were "good for something if I could only think of what".  So I have been layering various scraps of paper on them... they are still just hollow cardboard forms, so rather light.  NOW... they aren't covered completely, but WHAT is the next step for them...... ideas anyone?

Friday, September 7, 2012

Day Five of Learning Something New - Past/Present

Past/Present .. I was having a hard time with this and then it just "slapped me upside the head" as they say in the South.  I love this quote from Adam Gopnik talking about Joseph Cornell --  one of my alltime heroes...

"The false kind of nostalgia promotes the superiority of life past; the true kind captures the sadness of life passing."

I suddenly related that quote to the small rectangles I have been doing every morning for several months.  I never really thought about them as relating to the passing of time, the decaying of signs on old buildings, the fading of memory. 

The turtles, somehow, are part of that in my mind, not sure how, but there it is, the unconscious is a different country.

Zuni turtle fetishes represent the earth, a centered self.

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Thursday, September 6, 2012

Day 4 of Learning Something New -- Home

This one was hard because I am VERY home centered.  I would never leave if I had total choice and could import friends, restaurants, theaters, flea markets and museums.  

SO .... I wrote everything I did in and around my home for 2 days (not really everything but the reportables and importants and pet related).  I did one day vertical and the other day horizontal.  Then on top of the words, I drew the view out my studio window.  What you see are (top to bottom) the sky, the Palisades of the Hudson River (the New Jersey side), the Hudson River and the trees of the Hudson River Parkway in New York City.

I have a little personal project I have been doing since January in the calendar from the Alexander McQueen show here in New York.  For the first 5 months I drew the view out the window every day, fog, snow, rain, green etc etc.  Then as summer stretched on I got bored with unchanging green, so I started doing little graphics that continue daily.  You can see THEM, if you want, over on my photo blog, link on the right of this page.  Remember these are in little tiny rectangles... about 1.5 inches by 2 inches.  I am going to go back to daily views when the leaves start to turn.  

Also, I am doing this project in an already bound book, that I am using in landscape mode generally. The "thought" part goes on the left page and the "image" part goes on the right side.  Looks like this:

And like this...
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Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Day 3 of Learning Something New - Steps

Steps, the prompt talks about taking steps as a way to build a habit. If your "habit" is art, there is another part you need to remember. What I learned when I started taking art classes and really working at learning painting, drawing, photography, collage, printmaking etc, was that steps are not linear.  I thought "If I learn A then I can go on to B and then to C etc and I will get better at each step."  

Seriously not so.  Art is far from linear, it is circular.  Learning a bit about B reveals the flaws in your mastery of A and C does the same for both A and B when you try that!  Printing feeds into painting and both of them feed into photography, which feeds back. Art, for me is a huge circular staircase designed by Escher and you never come to the end, to "mastery".  Also, you have to step back now and then for distance to provide more clarity than the close up study gives. You have to learn to love circularity.

Below is a staircase from inside the Vatican.  A gloss medium transfer of an inkjet print. 

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Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Day 2 of Learn Something New

I have had a lot of teachers in my time, but something I read in my early 20's has stuck with me and, I think, shaped me more than anything else.  I learned the power of "Yes" from the autobiography of Armand Hammer.  As I remember it, when asked if he could build the trans Russian railroad he said yes, although at the time he probably knew next to nothing about it.  He just trusted his gut and his instincts.  Later, I had a friend who helped me clarify that what I regret in life are sins of omission, not sins of comission.  "Yes" in a different format.

The image is an image transfer of a two bear fetish from New Mexico.  Bears carry strength, self knowledge, courage, adaptability, healing and the ability to read spirits. These two carry bundles on their backs and I see them every day.

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Sunday, September 2, 2012

Last Big Adventure

I updated this to put in a picture that shows the gold I used behind the trees... maybe better, maybe not, but I think if you click on it to biggen it shows better.

Shimelle has an online class called Learn Something New Every Day for the month of September.  She is very much a "scrapbooker" and I wasn't sure I knew enough about that to participate, but my friend Gill encouraged me, and I decided I could try it and interpret it my way.

The first assignment was to consider your last adventure.  I interpreted it as the most recent adventure though some people in the group considered it to mean the last one you will ever have... hmmm ... very interesting.

In any  case, we were also encouraged to think what this had helped us learn.  And it didn't take much thinking to determine that my latest adventure was Tinta and to begin considering what I learned by thinking about her.

What I realized was that my relationship with Tinta has been not seeing the forest for the trees.  I focus on the ways she is different from Sienna and that I think she will never be really reliably housebroken and her incredible chewing and I miss that she is spunky and annoying and funny and determined.  I also miss that she is a snuggler, and a stubborn little girl who will probably eventually make a great adult.  (Of course only if she does not ingest my whole rug first!)

So, above is the first assignment, a collage of frayed burlap, glassine and paint about the forest and the trees...

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Molyvos has changed its decor

But the food is still as wonderful as before.  I was so taken with the food that I forgot to break out the camera til the dessert was all gone...


And the Greek coffee had been consumed ... except for that sludgy bottom
It looks good and it still tastes good....

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Monday, August 20, 2012

These people...

and some 2498 others were working on the ironman triathelon.  When this picture was taken, they had already swam over 2 miles in the Hudson River, biked 112 miles and were working on completing a Marathon.....
The competitors ran past our apartment last week, and we all just stood and watched them in awe.  A lot of them looked to be in really good shape and were about a third of the way through the Marathon at this moment... amazing

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Sunday, August 19, 2012

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Across the Hudson

There was an interesting weekend going on across the Hudson and on this side too... this was the first clue.

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Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Someone threw this away

About a year ago I found this in the trash.  It was still green, but of course no flower.  I hate to see orchids in the trash so I took it in and gave it to my west facing window.  I figured it would be the standard white on white, well, this sure was a pleasant surprise...

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Thursday, August 2, 2012

So this is July

I try to do a bit of what I see, and then some days I try to do whatever seems to fit in the little rectangle for that day.

When fall starts up across the Hudson I will do more what I am seeing, but the first week of July convinced me that I could play a little.  It is SUMMER after all!
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This was June in New York

I have previously shown you what  January , February, March, April and May looked like out my window.  They were somewhat interesting to me, since we seemed to be going somewhere.  June, however, convinced me that it might be time to change the format, at least until fall starts... Summer is green and wet and same same same....

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

A New York Hot Summer

This is the water play station in my neighborhood.  It is amazingly cooling, I run the dogs through it every time they open it since it is on my way to the dog park.  Heeding all the advice about exercise, the dogs and I go to the park every day for 30 - 45 minutes.  Since the walk there and back adds another 30 minutes they are getting a lot of movement.
A lot of the people who bring their dogs to the park sit and read their phones or their kindles and "let the dogs play".  If I did that my two girls would be staring at me from 30 inches away trying to figure out when I had been transformed into someone else because I am supposed to throw balls and let them bring them back to me.  I am also supposed to push the button on the dog level fountain ever 30 minutes or so and try to keep little stones from attaching themselves to the balls .. dog spit is apparently a very good adhesive.

New York in the summer when it sizzles.... and it has been sizzling a LOT lately.
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Thursday, July 5, 2012

Who, ME??????? NO!!!!!

Is there a sprayer that I could use to cover all my rugs with hot sauce? Tinta seems determined to eat her way through every oriental rug I own. She has eaten about 6 inches of the edge of one and is working on a big hole in the main rug. Now mind you, she is creative. She takes her chew toy of the moment. Lays down with it in her mouth 2 inches from her intended hole, puts her mouth on the rug right next to the chew toy, so it looks as though it is in her mouth and then proceeds to eat the rug, every once in a while running her teeth over the chew toy if she has the idea you might be looking at her.

Of course, that is in between sessions of trying to eat the entire New York Times by lunch, or her leash, or a cat, any cat, or invisible things, or a book, or the only remaining corner of a pillow on the couch. It is not that I don’t watch her, I am LEASHED to her most of the time, she is just the picture of doing what is right while actually doing what is not right.

"Eating the rug? Who? ME???? NO!!! I was sucking my paw. I was eating my chew toy! I was dreaming and just smacking my lips!!! ME???? Never!!! Look I even put the carpet back down after I ate the padding out from under it. See?? You can’t even see it!!"

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