Friday, November 8, 2013

Anyone who reads this blog knows that I am among other things, a knitter.  This is a direct quote from one of my favorite blogs, Knitters Review .  This week she mentioned  tv show from Norway...

"Knitting: A Fine Match for Slow TV
Earlier this month, some 1.3 million people tuned in to watch Norway's first ever National Knitting Evening. Part of NRK's Slow TV programming, the 13-hour knitting-themed "reality show" went from sheep to sweater. The show was so successful, topping the previous 12-hour episode on firewood, that there's been demand for a second, longer version. You can watch it here."

Now if you know me at all you know that there is a single sentence fragment from this review that I love more than anything else.... "topping the previous 12-hour episode on firewood"

I just had to thank Clara for making my day today!

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

A list of all my music journal pages With Links

Anthem - Leonard Cohen
Desperado - The Eagles
I was So Much Older Then, I'm Younger than that Now - Bob Dylan
A Song for You - Leon Russell
Chasing Cars - Snow Patrol
Secure Yourself to Heaven - Indigo Girls
Sister Golden Hair - America
Better Days by The Goo Goo Dolls
The End - The Beatles
Angel from Montgomery by Bonnie Raitt.
Whiter Shade of Pale - Procol Harum
Free Man in Paris
Alexandra Leaving -- Leonard Cohen
Cool Cool River - Paul Simon
I Had a King - Joni Mitchell
For a Dancer -- Jackson Browne
Heart with No Companion -- Leonard Cohen

And since I didn't have good pics of Chasing Cars by Snow Patrol, it is here

And Free Man in Paris by Joni Mitchell

I love being able to hold this little book of the loves of my life in my hand and flip through it.  I play music all the time but these were some of the ones I have loved for years...

Music Journal Page .. Angel from Montgomery

This is my latest Music Journal Page.  I realized that some of my pages have not been documented here, so I am going to make a list an post it next of all the pages  I have done 17 songs in 26 pages, 8 single pages and 9 double spreads.  I have 9 double spreads and 4 singles left to do.    This one is for Angel from Montgomery by Bonnie Raitt.

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Wednesday, October 9, 2013

I have been quiet here lately

However, I have been busy.  My friend Pete is studying Shamanism  I know little to nothing about becoming a Shaman, but I DID know that there were things he wanted to write down and remember, so YOU know that meant I was supposed to make him a book.

This was the result.   He chose the images, and I found some reinforced brown paper envelopes that I cut apart and printed and then waxed.  The wax gives the covers a really nice feel to them and they can be rolled up without cracking, because the wax is melted deep into the paper. 

The hinges are actually recycled from a single work glove that I found (probably on the street somewhere) and cut up.  I softened the picture of the text, but you can see that he is using it already!


I made a packing tape transfer of his natal chart and of some of the different animals that figure in what he is studying, so he has some to play with and use as the book grows. 

The book went home with him today, and it is going to be loved, I think.
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Tuesday, August 27, 2013

There is another thing that I have been doing.....

This is Gibson, designed by Norah Gaughan, who has always been one of my favorite designers... To see how it (I HOPE) will look when done see here  that is a ravelry link, so you can see how it goes together.  This is the first time that I have done a top down sweater and I have to say I love it.  I can actually try it on and see how long it is and stop when I think it is right as opposed to guessing.

This has gotten me started looking for top down in Ravelry thinking I want to do another one.  It has gone together really quickly and I love the color.  This was yarn I had in my voluminous stash and is a bit off gauge, but it is working out ok and I am happy so far.  It is on US 10.5 needles, which I normally feel are broomsticks but it was worth it because it is FAST!

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Monday, August 26, 2013

Romeo got a present

This tunnel got left in the recycle area and I thought it was another playtoy for Tinta.  Anything to give her more ways to exert herself.  So I brought it into the studio and put it on the floor.  Tinta likes it, but someone else loves it and when he is there no one argues with him over whose tunnel it is...

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Friday, August 23, 2013

Summer in the city - or where I have been when not here....


Even Pigeons like street chalk

Those shoes HAVE to hurt in 15 minutes... but I guess her pride will keep her from mentioning it.


some red some black, not sure there is a pattern here but I love the idea


I love it that in addition to a sort of kennel he has a RUG to sit on.

Do all owners eventually look like their dogs or only NY couples because we walk so much?

reasonable shoes and she looks cool

No matter where you live there are evenings under the sky
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Sunday, August 11, 2013

Tom Stoppard's Arcadia at 20

This article in the New Yorker, about Arcadia, got me thinking again about one of my favorite plays.  I take every chance I get to see it performed and I love it every time.  Some of my all time favorite lines are from this play.  No pictures but a good reference...

Sunday, July 7, 2013

this week's knitting....

Is blocking on the bed.  it is Annis which I changed a little, this was supposed to have nupps. but it has beads and I like it better for it.  It was above 90 degrees today, but I decided that blocking it was what was needed, so here it is.   

I like things that are not very deep so I can wear the deeper part in front and wrap it so the ends come around to the front.  This was a really nice pattern for all those requirements!  Now maybe back to socks, though I do have a big lightweight shawl on the needles now.  I took a visual inventory of my sock yarn and I have to live to be 130 years old and knit every day to use it up, but even with those requirements I wanted a skein or two of the new Rowan sock yarn.  Sigh. 


and for those who can't see the beads... hmmm black beads on a black background, I can't see them either, I just know they are there... they DO show when it is not blocked on black, I hope.
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Thursday, July 4, 2013

Latest Music Journal Pages Goo Goo Dolls

Everyone's forgiven now...
Tonight's the night the world begins again.

GooGoo Dolls
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Thursday, June 20, 2013

I'm playing with a full deck here... i hate puns, really....

But I want to talk a bit about what I am doing right now.  I know there are tons of "art decks" with things to write about or prompts etc. and I have tried several of them over time.  HOWEVER, I don't want to do a funky chicken dance while drawing on big paper with fat charcoal... or whatever else is in the list that the creator found worked for them or thought would make the deck more universal.....
I have my own version of "block" and I decided to try to find my own way to "unblock" without creating a new task that might or might not get finished or could become a block in itself. 

I lock myself and the dogs in my studio every morning and let them play or sleep or do whatever and I write my artist's pages and then I do other things and I try not to let myself out til noon.  I have done a good bit of work in the music journal and the bridge book and I am pondering another book that I am not ready to decide to do yet, but...

I just don't always have something that I want to DO while I am there and so I decided to create a chore deck.  I also decided right away that this was NOT going to be all drawn and painted and decorated it was going to be a piece of art supplies without any gilding whatsoever because I could certainly spend a lot of time making this and have it turn into another unfinished project.

I dug up a deck of cards .. 54 cards including two jokers and found that I could write on them with Sharpee permanent pens.  I sat down at the table and started looking around the studio.  Then I started writing.  One task per card.  Simple tasks..

* Go through the box of Polaroid Image Transfers and organize them
* Make a Gelliplate print or 5
* Check out the box of old Mediums to make sure they all are still usable
* Design and cut 1 print block
* Cut 5 eraser printing blocks
* Organize photography prints better for finding them
* Go through 1 box of yarn from under the bed
* Use Cotton Scrim in a print
* Collect all books about one artist and go through them

The list is heavy on organizing one specific area or type of tool or work or whatever.  I find that once I open something to organize it, a lot of ideas come flying out.   SO, this morning I shuffled the deck and picked the first one listed above.  I now have two image transfers from the box left out so I can work on them tomorrow.  If I don't do that, then I get to pull another card. 

The cards are absolutely not works of art, but I had a very easy time writing 54 things to do and I now have a list of all those little things I need/want to do.  I certainly could have dressed them up better and not just scribbled them down on a card but then I would not have 54 done and ready to see if this kicks me into doing more. 

So I found a pretty box to store them in.... and here they are...
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Thursday, June 13, 2013

The red transfers well also!

This is a bit exciting, though for some reason, I think related to the paper, the tape was cloudy and not as clear as the black typed one.  I want to do some experimenting with different papers since an image I was playing with came off some double sided Imaging and photo paper really well.  I bought when it was discontinued and sold at Jams for 10% of the old price.  I have TONS of it, I wonder now how I managed to lug all those boxes home, but I did somehow ...

In any case, experiment of the day was a success. 

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Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Something I am thinking about... or maybe playing with

I have an Underwood Typewriter (courtesy of my children, who are great gift buyers!)  and I have been playing about with when to use it to create text.

Transfers using tape ... where the clear tape is placed on a printed image and later the backing paper is washed away leaving the ink on the tape ... is one of the things I love to do.  I have used it here, and here and here in my GWBridge book with different effects.  The cover uses clear contact paper, but since making that I have gotten some 6 inch wide tape, so I have been using that.

However, to do this, you have to use laser or carbon based ink images.  Copier machine images will work, but Ink Jet images won't work since the water washes the ink away.  I only have an inkjet printer here, but my local UPS store... I LOVE THOSE GUYS... help me out.  I send them a pdf that I want printed and they print it on their lovely copiers and I go pick it up and pay for it, easy peasy.

I just wanted a little bit of text to play with here, however, for a project I am pondering.  SO, I broke out the typewriter and typed my favorite Peter Beard quote.  Sometimes it works better if you let it rest for 24 hours, but I had to see if it would work at ALL!  SO after about 10 minutes and some vigorous rubbing with a bone folder I soaked it  and it came out VERY interesting
Before attaching to anything.  I didn't clean it up TOTALLY clean, since I liked the look with some of the original paper showing:

As close as I could get, so you could see the lovely effect that the typewriter type gives.  You would never get this effect with a computer and a printer. 

Attached to some bumpy paper that I gessoed with stone gray Daniel Smith Gesso, which is one of my favorite background colors:

My lovely little typewriter came with a red and black ribbon, so I retyped the quote in red, also.  I am going to wait for 24 hours or so before peeling that one.

Things that worry me:  This is an OLD ribbon. I have to look to see what is out there that could /can replace it if I get addicted to this effect.
And, if I can find a replacement will it be the same kind of ink? 

Falling in love with old things is not for the faint of heart. 

And for other quoteaholics out there, this is the quote, which is about the artist as a collector:

"Once the connoisseur of connections starts looking for the coded signals that hint of order beneath chaos, they are everywhere, like the shimmering squiggles of string theory, organizing them into a manageable matrix becomes essential for getting from one day to the next."

Anyone who has seen my studio knows how this resonates for me. 
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Thursday, June 6, 2013

A New Page in the GWBridge Journal

This double page spread just fell into my lap when I looked at the photo.  I knew exactly what I wanted it to look like on the page, and it came close to what I had thought. 
This is the full page spread.  The edges are added with liquid pencil, and they fade better than they appear to in this photos because of the liquid pencil absorbs the light and the transferred photo reflects it.  But it is close to what it looks like in real life. You should be able to embiggen all the pages and it is better seen that way, I think.  The book is 4.5 inches by 14 inches when open completely.

closeup of the left page

closeup of the right page

Standing up, which is how I think the book will be seen generally.  There is more about how this all got started here and here.

I think that there are 7 spreads and a cover left to do... this one is fun.
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Wednesday, June 5, 2013

There is a hole in the world today, Will Campbell has died at 88.

Many people reading this will not know who Will Campbell is/was.  He is marvelously described in his obituary in the New York Times today which briefly mentions the way I came to know of him, through his autobiography/biography of his brother -- Brother to a Dragonfly.  I read it years ago when it first came out, and loved it at the time.  Since then, I have heard him speak several times and even shook hands with him once.

He was a voice for non-violence that never lost track of the fact that the world has humor and variety in it and is a wonderfully complex place.  To hear him speak when he took questions from the audience was pure delight.  He will be missed, but somehow I think he is fussin' at the God he believed in about why he didn't shine the light a little stronger sometimes.....

edited to add

It is a link to the LA Times obituary that contains one of my favorite lines, I think he used it every time he spoke .. "If you're gonna love one, you've gotta love 'em all."

Saturday, June 1, 2013

The Walls Notebook

I am enjoying this Walls Notebook.  It is a fat little book of pictures of city walls, mostly New York, but I think there are some others in there.  This started out as 2 garage doors and I increased the colors and added 2 figures I found in an early 20th century magazine.  I saw them years ago and thought the figures would be useful at some point, and here they are!  I try to keep the idea of wall art, so they could easily be stencils...

The best thing is that it is often very quick to do a page and you feel as though you have accomplished something when you are done.

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Friday, May 31, 2013

I keep making books, but at least this one has a purpose

First, the purpose.  I have many years of letters from my father's family in Germany to him aboard ship where he was a waiter and a porter and later when he settled in the US.  Most of them are handwritten in German and using Fraktur, so reading them is going to be unlikely, though I am looking for some options here.  The letters include pictures, and newspaper clippings and other things that a mother and sisters would have sent to the youngest son, so I would love to know what they reveal.

There are also a lot of American photos and letters from when he worked as a Bellman at the Waldorf Astoria, and as a Butler for an opera singer on Long Island as well as several other similar positions.

My Mother's history is sketchier, she was born in the US, in Fall River Massachusetts and is from a blended family,. There are some notes from a Half? /Step? brother who did some research so I can mine that a bit and see what comes up.  I also have some things I got from her older sister, though that is mostly photographs without captions or identification.

I am creating an art journal in my mind that blends both histories and as far back as I can go, which may not be far.  My father's father was from a part of Germany that is now Poland... maybe... and my mother's parents were from Ireland, so records may be thin on the ground.  But it sounds like an interesting project, and maybe my son would like the journal if I ever finish it.

SO, to start it all off, I decided to do a "collection journal" and put all the bits and pieces of information and notes in one place so I can see them all at once.  There are dates and names and even menus from shipboard dinners so this journal will hold pointers to the actual documents  and I will try to link it all to years.  I actually have 15 of my dad's Chauffer's Licenses from the 1930's with a variety of addresses on them -- some very odd things got saved -- and his draft notices for WWII along with his naturalization papers.

Anyone who knows me knows something that is a) blue b)"perfectly good" just not for what it was being used for or c) related to paper of any sort is not for throwing away in this crazy house.  So, from my stash of "could be book boards" I pulled the cover from an Italian Watercolor Pad that long ago was used up and it has become the front cover.  The back is plain old black mattboard.  The pages were project pages from a Rollabind system.  I trimmed off the holes for the little round thngees and repunched them for the Cinch Wires.  I love the page format but the rollabind never felt secure to me, so I just (see beginning of this paragraph) held onto them until a better use appeared.

Then I got out my Cinch  Binder and bound it with some red wires.  Thanks Gill for turning me on to this little device.  I love it, even though if it was an art journal I might sew it, for this kind of heavy use journal I LOVE the ease of this.

So, here it is as it is now.  I plan to cover the old cover's spine with something, and to see how it all works out over the next couple of months.  I love the color and the label just looks right somehow...

This is a closeup of the back.  I am still not getting the wires exactly round, but I can easily live with that....

The next step is to start collecting what I can mine from the 4 shoeboxes of photos and letters and general who knows what and organizing it in this book.  I see the final journal as a landscape one with pages split lengthwise in 2 different colors at least, divided based on how much information I have with some world events thrown in and a timeline across the lengthwise page divider.  We shall see, I guess.
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Thursday, May 30, 2013

I went to the Cathedral of Saint John the Divine

I knew what I was going to see, but while I was looking for the show I was hunting for I saw a lot of this amazing building that is being repaired from a lot of wind and water damage it has suffered recently.

This was what I was looking for.  It is a show thru July 29th of sculptures in fiberglass and plaster called "Surveys (from the Cape of Good Hope)" by Jane Alexander.  It is disquieting, and strangely beautiful.
There are many more pictures and a lot of good information at the link above.

After looking at the sculptures, it was interesting to look at the other visitors to the cathedral differently than I might have if I had not seen them....
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