Monday, July 30, 2007

Back from the Jemez

Another year of Hummingbird Art Camp is over. It was, as usual a great week, with lots of cool kids motivated to make art. I have been there four times now, so I am getting to know the regulars and the Higgins family pretty well. I have taught with Beth Stodieck of Texas and Cindy Maestas of New Mexico every year, and Kim and Anna have been there three of the four times I have. The pic on top is the first thing I see in the mornings when I step out of the dorm where I stay, called the Beehive. It still looks so beautiful and strange to my Indiana eyes. I think I have taken this picture every year. Jerry and Teena King make my week so perfect every year - they are, I am sure, the sweetest people in New Mexico.

The teachers have a little time off during the week to explore the area. This time, we went to the Ponderosa Winery. We tasted a bunch of great wines and had a tour of the place from the owner and his wife and their dogs. Here is the view from there and some of the grapes growing out there in the desert. We had dinner at a little place in La Cueava. On Wednesday, we went to Santa Fe to the Georgia O'Keefe museum, a quick trot around the Plaza and lunch at the Coyote Cafe - yum.

I had a smooth trip - no delays or lost luggage - and I am SO glad to be back home and working on The Book. Cheryl says she has the angel-choir thing when she says that. I'm not sure what sound I get. I think it's just the whirring of the wheels turning in my brain.


Saturday, July 21, 2007

An Important Announcement

I am writing a book.

Okay, half a book.

It will be out next fall.

Please buy it.

No, really, I am.
The contract has been signed and everything.

Friday, July 20, 2007


This is one of the shirts for the 3v3 soccer tomorrow. They all turned out pretty good and look like a set. You never know with tie dye. It's a surprise until you unwrap them. Here are two of the tie dye fabrics I made after I ironed them . Love these! Dying is so much fun, but I don't do it often due to the mess. I am definitely planning a dye day before school starts with me and about five yards of fabric. I am thinking of doing fat quarters and selling them...? Maybe. We'll see. Maybe people who like to have clean hands would buy them. Mine were a fright!

I saw a woman on Good Morning America yesterday who built herself a house. The house was, I think, 84 square feet. It was on a trailer, like one would haul a race car on, and had no running water. She has a toilet of the camping/portapot variety, but no shower. She limits herself to only owning 300 things. All this in an effort to minimize her carbon footprint. Fine with me. I am totally in favor of people doing what they think is right. Rock on. But here's the kicker: she takes her showers at her friends' houses or at work. So I guess she's still making a footprint. She's just making it with someone else's shoes.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Just Playing

My girls are in a 3v3 soccer tournament Saturday and I got to make the teams uniforms. We did orange soffee shorts, orange socks and yellow-pink-orange tie dye tanks. So while I was at it and already making a mess, I made some fabric for myself. They need to be ironed but they turned out pretty good. No plans - I just wadded and rubber banded and squirted. I am in the pre-teaching trip panic mode, as I leave for New Mexico on Sunday. I keep having nightmares about missing my connection, losing luggage and all the other stuff that could go wrong, like the person sitting next to me hogging the arm rest. AND there is another Very Big Thing going on. Hair cut n color today, rinsing tie dye team shirt, laundry, packing, cleaning and freaking out also on the schedule.

Friday, July 13, 2007

Book In Progress

This is the project I am doing in my classes at Hummingbird Art Camp in Jemez Springs, New Mexico. It's based on the book I did at Arrowmont last month. I love that it only takes one sheet of watercolor paper to make the whole thing. I am at the collaging stage and should have it done sometime tomorrow. I called my class "Just Wing It - A flight- themed collage book" this year. Some of the pages are shaped like wings and there are birds, dragonflies and such inside. I see my students one hour a day for five days, so I think this book could also be done as one day class. I love making these books.

I have been sitting here looking at the blinking cursor trying to think of something interesting to say but not coming up with anything.

Two notes from the world of sports:

1. David Beckham is officially playing soccer here! I WILL put my eyes on him sometime in the next five years. 23 might be my new favorite number.
2. In the how did THIS happen category - Dale Earnhardt, Jr. now endorses...yuck...I can hardly say this...adidas!!! And we just bought Whit a pair of Predators. Had we known Jr. was signing with adidas, we would have gone with the Pumas! We do not like Jr. We like Jeff Gordon. We didn't like Sr. either. Rest his soul.
Gotta go watch Talledega Nights with my honey.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

I am a compulsive doodler.

I doodled this while I was talking to Cheryl on the phone last night. This girl-in-the-garden theme has been coming up a lot lately. Don't know why. Don't need to.
I'm watching Top Chef on Bravo right now. It's okay, but it's no Project Runway. Things are pretty calm around here this week. Whit has soccer conditioning every day with the girls' team and then she also trains with the boys' team. We are semi-pals with the coach and she knows most of the boys from hanging out at the soccer field all these years. She has basketball three days a week, too. She is tired and a little grouchy. Courtney feels a little lonesome and left out. I bought her one of those plastic palettes, a bunch of brushes and some paper for acrylics so she can paint away her thirteen-year-old blues.
Hummingbird Art Camp is only ten days away!

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Art Crops

As a summer follow up to my Frida art jeans, I have been working on these khaki art crops for the last two days. I finished the machine sewing today and laundered them to get rid of the paper backing that I used to stabilize the fabric AND, more importantly, start to get that scrubby, raveled look on the egdes. I don't use wunder under or any of that stuff any more. Feels too boardy when it's done and it keeps everything together too well. I like stuff to look deconstructed, but to actually be well-constucted. I bought a pair of brown and white polka dot espadrilles (I know that's not spelled right) at Target the other day, so that was on my brain when I started these yesterday. I saw this hunk of brown and white dot so I used that for the sides. See, if you cut the legs right up the sides, you can get into the interior portion of the leg panels much easier with the machine. The only problem is that I can't seem to get the right amount of fabric back in there when I put the pants back together. These and my art jeans are both too big. Yes, I spose I could rip them out and make them smaller OR measure before I cut and sew OR just put a belt. I am going to add some hand embellishments - buttons and such and then decide whether or not to finish the hem. I think I can wear these to school with a cute twinset and those Target shoes. The pic on the left is the left front leg; the pic on the right is the right back leg. All fabric from my stash and $3 pants from Walmart.

Friday, July 06, 2007

About a year ago...

I got published for the first time. Right after CPS #8 came out, I made this doll to celebrate getting ink. Her name is Maggie (short for magazine). In her purse you can see a mini copy of the mag. Here's a detail of the inside, showing my Little Pink House of Cards. This is just a silly thing I made.

We took a short trip to the Smokies for the Fourth. I don't know how much longer the girls will WANT to play mini golf with mommy and daddy. I tried my hardest to enjoy every time I heard "Come on, Mom!" Soon, they will go on without thinking where I am. And that is as it should be.

On the way home, we stopped at a Bass Pro Shop...and I went in. And I bought...
clothes. How did THAT happen? Really, Bass Pro had tons of super cute, kinda artsy/outdoorsy/craftsy clothes. I bought this skirt and top. They are by Grammici and have a ragged edges, deconstructed thing going on. I wear skirts almost every day to school, so I guess this is my first official back-to-school purchase. I'll probably wear it Sunday to church. J.R. loves that he dragged me in there kicking and screaming and I'm the only one who bought something. Cute is cute; can't help that it came from Bass Pro.

Monday, July 02, 2007

Happy July!

Here's my daily art from last week. After I did that assemblage week before last, I was hooked on the colors - turquoise, red, black and white. It doesn't really have a meaning.

How 'bout that header? I don't know how she did it, but somehow, Cheryl made it for me. What a pal! It is the perfect finishing touch to my blog overhaul. I decided to change it because someone told me it looked like pepto bismol before. Cheryl has a new look on her blog and her website as well. Check her out.

I had a moment of clarity yesterday about the 1967 book. I have decided to do something I have never done before - an abecadarium, with one spread of pages for each letter. Trying to plan out the number of pages per signature to make it come out right. Of course, I prefer an odd number of sigatures. I think the spine looks better with an odd number of sewings. I haven't totally decided on how to bind it and whether I want it to be all fabric, all paper or a mix. I'm not going to limit it to one thing per letter. I'll put as many things as I need to for the book to be interesting and bursting with energy, life, love, color and information. I want the things I make to enlighten, educate, entertain and uplift. No badness allowed.

Have a great holiday. Embrace your freedom to make art. For most people in the world, art making is a luxury, not an every day thing.