Not much time to chat. I am hurriedly packing for another trip to San Francisco to celebrate the American Thanksgiving with the inlaws, and to see the annual tree lighting ceremony in Union Square. Yay!
And while I am there I might…
…spend a night at the fancy St.Francis (a gift from Jeff’s parents)
…wander through chinatown. I want some cheap exercise books for journaling and collage.
…browse happily in City Lights
…have a beer and sketch at Vesuvio’s.
…enjoy the x-mas displays and window shop at Macy’s
…peruse paper at the Paper Source (maybe treat myself to a few sheets)
…go for high tea at the Ritz (another gift from Jeff’s parents, thank-you). I am hoping they have madelines. I so love tea.
…stopping for burritos at Cancun in the Mission (the most colorful dining experience I have ever had). (stopping in to the Pirate Store)
…search for cool galleries, wherever they may be.
…celebrate a special birthday.
I’ll fill you in on my adventures when I can.
My studio looks like it was hit by a tornado. Yesterday I worked on a new collage series for a group show. I am always amazed at the amount of mess that occurs when I do any kind of creative work. The right brain cares not for neatness and order, but would rather wander furiously through chaos and dis-order. Single minded and manic it jumps around with color and shapes, glue flying. I walked around with duct tape on my sock for a long while, glue in my hair. The scars of battle.
good links (kicking my butt)
…casa timotheo, beautiful design, beautiful illustrations from Portugal. (thank you Mariana)
…kim’s suitcase…I met kim many years ago at a book fair where we both had tables and was an instant fan. Her work is tiny, delicate, colorful, and adorable. And her writing is like eating a favourite dessert (you can never have too much.) Yay for her new blog!
…we are what we do…so good. I wish their book was available in North America, I would be buying one for everyone on my list! (link from mint-tea)
…the world needs more stickers.
..Jonathan Gitelson. the art of the commonplace. Hours of fun.
A little grumpy today. In part due to the chewing noinses made by the mice in the walls that woke me up last night. What are they building in there? Also due to the fact that I tend to take on a little too much when I start a new project, and get easily overwhelmed by all the things that need to get done for it.
I am having difficulty deciding if i should a) clean my house, b) go for a walk, or c) work more on the book. I think I am trying to do them all at once, and end up starting nothing.
And so I do a blog post instead.
Feeling like I don’t have anything interesting to write today.
Some days are like that.
Some days you feel like being immersed in the centre of a large group of people, engaging them, spurring them on with your stories. Some days you just want to sit in the corner, be in your own little world and not utter the smallest of noises.
Some days you want to be loud, wear red, noisy jewelery dangling from your wrists, enter a room loudly. Some days you want to walk quietly by youself, blending into the surroundings, feeling like a part of the larger picture.
Some days you are so completely daring, you want to eat everything up, read every book, jump off high cliffs, try all those things you’ve never done. Some days you want to eat cereal and watch oprah.
Some days you put on the Beastie Boys and dance wildly. Some days you only want to hear cello, and sip tea.
Some days you do a series of ten paintings and feel like the greatest artist in the history of the universe. Some days you do one and decide want to look into a new career.
Some days you spend in gut wrenching, belly holding, tear enducing laughter.
Some days it is o.k. to be quiet.
I have become consumed with a new idea. After months of waiting, trying to put ideas together, forcing, pushing, squeezing, manipulating, a new work, a new book, must find, (non of which worked)… an idea floats in. It comes, as they most often do, on a long walk in the woods. It floats past my head, gently, out in front of me where I can contemplate it for a moment. It comes in unconnected, unrelated, unhindered by any of the previous ideas. Alone. But with a force. A well of excitement builds like an explosion in my gut.
All of my best projects come with this feeling attached. Call it a strong knowing. Aha. elation. and then i am running. literally. there is so much energy i can’t contain it. the work begins. i wake up in the middle of the night with new ideas, scribbling down thoughts at all times of the day. consumed.
and it feels really good.
that is all i will say for now. I have always had a practice of not talking too much about a project while it is in production. It lets out too much of a the energy about it, energy that needs to go into the creation. Don’t worry, I will keep you updated.
I will say that it is new, different, and it touches on some of the feelings I am having about the politcal climate in North America of late. Encouraging change in small ways (or big). That is the role of the artist.
some links I am perusing…
…simply serra, cute design
…kelly blair, fabulous book covers you could eat!
…Yamauchi Kazuacki, (I can’t remember where I got this link from, apologies)
…52 Projects, (found from my stats page), love this!!!
…the Lost Mitten Project, (link via Tania’s inspiring illustrated blog) I am an avid mitten loser. (You may remember that last winter I crocheted a long string for my mittens.) So this project speaks to my mitten losing heart. The artist hangs hundred of single mittens in various installations. I alway feel a slight sadness when I find a lost mitten myself. Is the owner missing it? What led up to the loss?
…on a more serious note this blog by a girl living in Iraq really moved me and made me want to do something (link via the daring donovan). Even if it is donating money to the relief effort. A company I trust for this, as I’ve been dealing with them for many years now. (their site seem to be down for the moment. keep trying)
Sidney the elephant is on his way to work. He carries his briefcase which contains the following items,
1 cell phone
his lunch (which consists of 1 tomato and cheese sandwich with mustard and
1 container of milk)
Sidney works at a law firm where he is an expert at memorizing and retrieving case numbers. After work he likes to put on his p.j.’s, and eat dinner (tofu with peanut sauce), while watching his favourite show (Jeapardy).
Sidney was created using iron on transfer paper, the design printed (both front and back) then ironed onto cotton. The briefcase was sewn out of felt. the accessories have a little piece of velcro on the back and can be attached. approx. 9″ x 4″
Having made many of these pillow dolls in the past I find I am still working at perfecting the ironing technique. So far it seems the hotter the better. For me (someone with a short attention span), the method is fairly quick (once the design is complete), and I quite enjoy making accessories to go with the dolls. (For Hortence and Giles I made tiny skates out of felt, and scarves.)
I saw the Motorcycle Diaries last night. It got me all fired up. There is an excitement in me, a feeling that good things (and big things) can be accomplished in small ways.
There are days when one feels like her voice does not made one tiny little dent on the hard scratchy surface of this planet, and then there are days when she feels like she sends a small ripple across a pond that spans the width of the earth.
All that is required of the artist is to put the energy (the words, the ideas, the paintings) out there, one little piece at a time. One feels something, then expresses something.
And that m’dear I can do. Yes I can.
As my creative writing professor in college was fond of saying, “When the Japanese were in a period of peace, they painting only fans.”
What form will your revolution take?
(found my pen)
What will monday bring? If you are in my part of the world it is snow, a light sprinkling of the stuff. Some snow, a spilled cup of tea, early morning singing (the waifs still), a search for the lost pen (still continuing), and the ups truck.
I spent the weekend drawing and sewing my addition to the month of softies. I become obsessed with these things. I have come to understand that it is the creation of characters that really fills me up. It is exciting to take a rough pencil drawing and see it emerge into a three dimensional character that you can carry with you everywhere you go. The creature starts to take on a life of it’s own, with little personality quirks and trademarks. I will show you what I mean once the photos are taken this week.
I have entered into a period of hyper creativity, too many ideas, too little time. Which one comes next? What form will it take? Want to start new book concept, want to redo the website, want to start on old ideas. Feeling a little frantic and excited. Want to get moving, now! just start something.
And then I look up at my wall calendar, at the quote for november which reads,
“Adopt the pace of nature.” -Ralph Waldo Emerson
So I take a deep breath, and remember that there is no need to rush any of this. It will all emerge in it’s own time, in it’s own way.
Time for a walk.
The snow melts slowly.
I was amazed to find myself adapting quite well to living in a car for a couple of weeks. Space is completely redefined and priorities shifted. One creates an entirely different scale of judgement for many things. A bathroom was “fancy” because it had a nice smelling hand soap. Starbucks an absolute luxury because they have a selection of teas (and coffee that does not come out of a machine!) One will do just about anything to not have to eat at a chain restaurant or a gas station, but there are parts of the country where that is impossible, (much to my dismay). How my heart did soar when we would enter into a city again with a fancy health food grocery store. Eyes widening over a selection of fresh produce and organic deli sandwiches. Body rejoincing at the thought of detox tea, and citrus.
12 states in nine days. This planet is so immensely beautiful. Some of the sights and experiences have changed me forever. Some things are a blur. The last few cities seemed to blend into one. Omaha, Denver, Chicago, where was that restaurant again? How did I get here? Random moments stick out in my mind. Peeing in the snow in the middle of the night, amidst silence. A bonding moment with a woman in a Chicago rest room that made me smile for a couple of hours (I walked in on her by mistake, she exclaimed, “It’s o.k. honey, it’s all the same, I got nothing you don’t”). Singing christmas carols loudly while driving on dark roads. Getting caught in a snowstorm at the top of a mountain and having to turn around, being the only car on the road. Exploring an old mine shaft at the back of a cool cafe, filled with that dripping, damp, moldy smell, (the smell of claustrophobia). The feeling of moving my legs again after hours in a cramped space. Finding a great cafe, (with books) and sitting down to write.
some great things…
I picked up a calendar of “the Wuggly Ump” by Edward Gorey, it has some of my favourite drawings of his ever.
The above drawing is of a tea container that I had in a cafe in Madison (the drawing was done in the car, which I don’t really recommend as it can lead to a slight bout of nausea as I quickly learned.) I had never seen one like it before. If anyone knows it’s origin or where I could get one I’d be happy to know.
I believe my new journal from Lovely design is currently at my post office. can’t wait, can’t wait.
I am overjoyed at Loobylu’s Month of Softies project!!! Want to sew, want to sew.