periwinkle spiral cobalt grid aqua wave magenta circle blue line

February 23, 2014

creating and exploring on the weekend

The weather is better, in the 40s and the snow is melting.  I've spent the weekend journaling, creating journals, and exploring Pinterest.  I haven't pinned anything yet, but have wandered around from color to carnivals, from abandoned decay to childhood toys to clothing styles to paranormal to vintage photos.

I'm using Evernote to clip some pictures and articles for idea generation, and am amazed at how much I can find to really look at.  There's a lot that doesn't register or that I'm not interested in, but quite often I am struck by a scene or a color combination and can save it to really examine it and think about it later.

it's not all pleasant - scenes from wars, Chernobyl, Victorian memento mori images... but it is a way for me to learn.  Many times I go to the original website for the pinned image and can read articles or blogs.  I even discovered a couple of new  to me  musicians and singers.

Here's the fabric journals I made, one for a friend and two for me - composition book covers from a pattern at this etsy shop:  It was fun to do using some of my leftover hand dyed fabric, and I found that "vintage" composition books are bigger than ones from the dollar store so i had to adjust the pattern.

I also used up some of the paper bags and old notebooks and vintage paper and cardboard I've been saving, to make paper journals.

Did you know that on the bottom of some paper bags, you can see the name of the person who made it?  Really interesting.  I am not sure where I will find time to write in all of these, but recycling all that stuff, a large box of it, into something useful feels good.

Next I am going to make a color wheel using crayon shades, for my color journal, and overdye a jacket for a friend.  I love weekends!

February 14, 2014

snowstorm's over for now

This storm was a heavy snowfall, we even paid to have the driveway plowed since Keith and Kyle wouldn't be able to shovel it all.  I got to leave early yesterday, and took today off, so after stopping on the way home for a few groceries and bird food I was glad to be safe inside.  The birdies were glad for the food, we have had the usual finches, juncos, tufted titmouses, or is that titmice, and chickadees.  We have an occasional cardinal and blue jay, and a few mourning doves just hanging out.  Today we even had a woodpecker.

I spent time cleaning out books to donate, and then I sorted my paints into bins, by color.  I am so excited to have found a bunch of Golden paints that I didn't even realize I had!  I can't always afford to buy them so this is just wonderful to have the supplies.  The snowstorm before this one, I cleaned out and organized all of my papers - the cardstock, typing paper, accounting paper, music paper, and more, that I use in journaling and mixed media.  I get a lot of them at this very junky flea market in Ravena, NY.  I always find something interesting there and it isn't very expensive either.

I have also had fun wandering around Pinterest, first for art journals, then fiber or fibre art, then textile art, and art quilts... I have found so many things for inspiration and colors.  I seem to either choose very bright, colorful things or very neutral white, tan, off white and then denim or indigo blue things.  Have found some great quotes too.  I am starting to feel like I maybe want to create something, I just don't know what.  It's been a strange few months without a desire to create.  And I still sometimes wonder if it is ok to just be who and what and where I am...

I haven't taken many pictures lately, but will try to post some eventually, once I've got something to show.

January 18, 2014

the possibilities are endless!

I am good at making lists.  I am good at planning.  I am not so good at doing.  I find that sometimes I am overwhelmed at how many choices there are:

  • books to read, 
  • free books to download, 
  • projects to start, continue or even finish
  • blogs to read, 
  • patterns to try
  • journal entries to write
  • poems to revise
  • cupboards and shelves to clean, 
  • recipes to download and cook, 
  • places to visit... 

and that's just my personal stuff, not counting work or family.

It's great to have these possibilities, but I am realizing that I need to be responsible and actually do things.  In the last several weeks I have decided that I want to get back to journaling, create a color journal, continue organizing my stuff, eat healthy, sew some clothes for me, work on some art projects...  the list is quite long and my free time is very finite.  This three day weekend I am setting some goals that I believe I can accomplish:
  • I am sorting my pencils and pens and markers into color families.
  • I am sorting my rubber stamps into those I absolutely love and those I use occasionally.
  • I am putting all of my magazine clippings and paper pieces into one large box.
  • I am gathering all of my other paper working tools into boxes.  
I'll see how I do!

December 23, 2013

reviewing and recycling

Life has been crazy the last few months, and I have made some changes and am planning others to ease stress and make time for me.  Right now, as I'm looking forward to the holiday season, I am working on a long term cleaning out stuff project.  I'm very good at collecting, but not very good at distributing.  And I don't have space for many things that I once thought were important or essential, but aren't really that necessary anymore.

What I am realizing:

  •  I know that I will probably never get outside studio space.
  • There are so many choices and options everywhere that it becomes hard to choose - which book to read, which show to watch, stuff to see on Facebook and people's blogs, work to do, news to read, art to create...
  • I will probably not make everything I want or can think of - I may never learn to spin or use resin or oil paints.
  • I know that I want to focus on finding my voice, my style, one more time. I want to use grids and shapes and knitting and words and color.
  • I want to dye yarns and fabric.  
  • I want to knit.  
  • I want to hand stitch.  
  • I want to write.  
What I have  done so far:
  • kept only those patterns and creative ideas that I want to make and think I will make, discarding ideas that are too complex for me or too "foofy" (as my brother would say!)
  • got an Evernote account to put things in to avoid building up paper again - color combos, images, recipes, how to's are all stored and organized and available on the web, anywhere.
  • put all my altered books in one place.
  • put all my journals in one place.
  • stored all but the most meaningful pictures of family and life and stuff, and those are in one container to grab quickly if there's a tornado or something.
  • got all my running the household and family stuff files in order (except the budget which will happen very soon)
  • got a paper shredder on sale and using rewards points so that I can shred bills and things with names on them instead of storing them
  • started saving bank transfer and bill paying confirmation reports as pdfs instead of printing them - computer storage is cheap
  • started go go through a couple of my free Kindle ebooks every day, to delete the ones I am not really interested in after all.
  • organized all my art and creative books and magazines in the unused dining room space, neatly on shelves.
Some goals:
  • to clean out all the art stuff and donate what I won't use but is still good
  • to go through my clothes and weed out things I don't like or that don't fit anymore
  • to write at least once a week
  • to cook healthier meals and plan ahead for meals
  • to play in my art journal and not care about how it looks, it's the creating or remembering that is important.
  • to revitalize my day job - which is important to me as well
So it appears that I am ready to start the new year.  This season has so many memories, of our house and Christmas trees and Christmas cookies, of getting presents and giving presents, of mom and dad doing all of the traditions, religious and family.  I was so blessed to have so much, not only things but love and caring.  

July 14, 2013

k2tog (knit two together) - my show at the Iron Spring Gallery in Ballston Spa NY

Here's some shots of my current show:

looking into the gallery room

" intersections"
 "liminal wave"
" urban clouds"
"vintage trims" collage book

All of the pieces use knitting as design elements.  The half circles in "urban clouds" and the feather and fan pieces in "liminal wave" are based on the free range knitting techniques of Jane Thornley,, and are used with her permission.  The ruffled circles in "intersection" are my design. 

I am looking forward to continuing with knitting.  I have lots of ideas, and now just have to find the time to create.

June 25, 2013

On vacation!  A stay at home week which I am spending preparing for my show at Strolling Village Artisans, which I will be hanging on Sunday.  So far I have cooked, cleaned, worked on the altered book, worked on the ocean piece, and successfully changed the light bulb in my sewing machine.  I also completed a set of Artist Trading cards for the group I belong to, Arts in the Cards.

February 24, 2013

I am now part of a small group making Artist Trading Cards, or ATCs.  They are one of my favorite things to create and I have a collection of over 200 so far.  I've made them with fiber and fabric, collage, drawing, using markers and really just experimenting.  Here's the blog, this month's theme is sky, and I've posted my ATCs there.