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Monday, May 19, 2008

More Fabric Postcards

The green and flowered weave is part of an experimental postcard series, and the pink and black postcard with ribbon and rhinestones is part of another series. I like the way Princess Maaow turned out. She has her own velvet cushion, and a dressing room full of fashion accessories. Here you see her sitting pretty wearing only a gold, sparkly crown and a blue bead necklace. Feline chic!

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Group Art

Four other women and I participated in a Collage Challenge: we each mailed the others at least five objects which had to be incorporated into the design. Any other items could be added at will. When finished, we each sent a picture of our project to show the others. It took me a long time to figure out what to do, where to start. I developed a slightly resentful attitude about being made to use others' objects. One sign I posted over a pouty woman sitting on high heels states, "You can't make me wear pointy shoes and you can't make me do group art." Another states, "This is not art, this is just layered stuff." Additional word cues are "Keys: don't leaf home without them" and "How will you connect?" Two unique twists were folding paper and making an "ink blot" design with food coloring, and coloring sea salt to put into tiny glass bottles. Centered on brown candy wrappers are clear glass pieces, one with a shiny penny glued underneath: Penny Candy, get it? I discovered that sometimes art is hard work. But when it "clicked," it was fun.

Fireflies Quilt

This wall quilt started out as bamboo silhouetted by a full moon, but the scene lacked interest. I consulted a photographer friend who has visited Japan numerous times. He suggested fireflies, because the Japanese highly respect these insects which began dying off when industrial polution tainted their habitat. The people worked hard to clean up the riverways, and the firefly population returned. There is actually a firefly festival in Japan to celebrate. I also asked what kind of window treatment one would find in a traditional Japanese home. Not curtains or blinds, but a room divider or screen. Thus the "linen look" border to the left. I included the Japanese symbol for firefly, Hotaru, drawn by this same artist, David N. Boyer of Rochester, NYS. On the reverse of the quilt, the label includes a firefly cartoon he also created. When I tire of calling it "Hotaru," it might be called "Five Olives With Black Pimentos." (Oh well, I tried...)

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Mothers' Day Project

The only photo store in town is closing its doors after almost 100 years of business. I felt sad while walking it's length yesterday, knowing that it would be for the last time. The owner gave me all the scrap photo matte I wanted, various sizes and shapes, colors and textures. Many were just a tad over postcard size.

At home, I arranged the matte board pieces by size, then went upstairs to my new sewing space and began creating a scene with thread painting (free-motion machine embroidery on netting and washaway foundation). This I adhered to gold matte board which I then covered with purple netting. I added black matte board, and covered a larger piece with purple and gold fabric. Today I finished the glueing, adhering a label and hanging aparatus to the back. After the glue sets it will be ready for gifting at breakfast out tomorrow morning. I almost wish I could keep this one-of-a-kind piece of paper/fabric/fiber art, but maybe I will make another similar piece. Or something different.

Friday, May 2, 2008

Sewing Room Hesitation

After waiting more than one-and-a-half years for the room's reconstruction to be complete, I should be creating like crazy in my "new" sewing space. But I feel like a visitor. It's different. Like I just moved in and need time to get settled. Everything has its place, and it's neat, bright and airy, but I was so used to working on small projects at the kitchen table that this might take an adjustment. So much to do, I hope I get over whatever is holding back my creativity, and SOON!


Tuesday May 7th: We hiked through the woods to the Lake. It was lovely, though the weather was cool: 50's and windy. Whitecaps headed toward shore and the sound of surf was impressive. So nice to get outdoors and away from the everyday... ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
A quilter friend stopped by today and offered to take me to the beach next week. (See photo at top of blog.) I need a nature adventure. We visited this lovely place along Lake Ontario several years ago. First there is a considerable forest walk. Birdsong and frog calls punctuate the silence. The path ends at wooden bridges built to keep visitors from disturbing the fragile dune ecosystem. Alas, footprints everywhere, and much poison ivy. And then the vista opens to reveal a vast expanse of blue water and gentle waves lapping on white beach. The first time I saw it I grinned so widely I thought my face would split. It's so peaceful there. I do hope we might walk barefoot, if there isn't too much broken glass and litter.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

May Jaunt

I really like barns, trees, footpaths, bridges. A friend and I went to a quilt show together. On the return trip, I noticed a free-standing concrete bridge abutment in a field along the thruway. It prompted a small quilt (two actually, one for me, one for her) with this saying: "Friendship like a bridge supports us on the journey through life." At least that's what I came up with.

Today, the first of May, was my first day riding on my favorite bicycle trail. Most of autumn's leaves have blown away.

Wildflowers rise from the forest floor. Groups of Mayapples with their deeply lobed leaves like umbrellas cover one area. Another hill boasts a gathering of Trillium: large flowered White, and burgundy Purple. Bloodroot show its basal leaf which curls around the stalk, before the single white flower with yellow crown appears. Rue Anemone, Wild Oats, and Yellow Coltsfoot are evident. And the ferns clumped at the feet of the Birch Trees.

the Fern
symbol of sincerity,
voiceless sentinel
of the silent woodlands
has veins
which perpetuate the race.

"Found Poetry" (selected words arrangedin the order in which found in the text)
from Flowers and Ferns in Their Haunts Page 185
It amazes me that I remember so many of the flowers and birds identified while I hiked along the AT in 1980. That lifestyle, so basic yet critical- living alongside of nature at the mercy of the elements, having only what one carries on one's back- seems to be "in my blood" and I find myself longing for the peace and beauty of the outdoors experience. And rue the loss of my once-in-a-lifetime most excellent hiking partner.