Saturday, March 31, 2007

Out like a L.A.M.B.

Or a Peep. We went shopping yesterday - the mall, Hobby Lobby, Joann Fabric, Michaels (bought nothing), TJ Maxx (where the girls found the new Gwen Harajuku purses[that's why it's L.A.M.B. at the top] which I did not buy for them) and Target. The girls bought Peeps at Target. The colors they chose are a crime against sugar-coated nature. Aren't they hideous? The red ones are especially repulsive. Are they sunburned? Emabarrassed? Coated in paprika? You'll be glad to know that they are exclusive to Target, so CVS and Walgreen are safe.

On my spring break goals, it's a mixed bag. As of today, I got the 25 miles, but I have had to walk some of them due to a nagging injury that I can't get to reslove. I didn't clean as much as I wanted, but I made huge progress on a ceratin project and got the bulk of my Chicago materials prepared. After a bout of insomnia and nightmares, I did manage to get caught up on sleep, which is the most important part of spring break - to go back to school refereshed and full of energy to tackle to the last seven weeks.

Sunday, March 25, 2007

It's warm today,but...

it's Indiana in the spring, so the weather will be a roller coaster for the next six weeks or so. I don't know how many times friends of mine have gone to Florida for the week and the weather has been nicer here. Went shoppping after church. Picked up a few things for the girls. Mommy got some a dress and a couple of tops, cheap at the Tanger outlet.

I feel almost obligated to stay up late tonight since I don't have to get up in the morning, but I doube I'll see 11:00pm. Did you watch Peyton on SNL last night? Isn't he a doll? So much better than Tom Brady. Tom Brady WISHES he was Peyton Manning. Have you ever watched that show Cold Case? I never want to, but it always sucks me in and I have to see how it ends. I am back to reading The Memory Keepers Daughter. I haven't picked it up in over a month. I was reading today in the car. There was a passage in there that gave me goosebumps. I hope to finish it this week.

Saturday, March 24, 2007

A Book So Nice I Made It Twice

These are little - about 5" tall by 3"wide - two signature books with canvas duck covers. There are doors and windows cut out here and there throughout the book, so you can peek thru to the next page. I had been thinking about what kind of journal I wanted to make to take to Arrowmont to document my class this summer. The class is called Printmaking Funhouse, so I came up with the house idea for the book. These are just (I am going to use an unnecessarily pompous word here) prototypes. I love using primed canvas in place of case paper. It acts like paper, but has the durability of fabric. I am going to make an accordion book with wooden covers and the text block from primed canvas. I will use either little tacks or staples to attach the covers to the pages, something decorative. This book might become my Arrowmont journal. I adore little artist books, but it seems that big books are more attractive to the masses. I love something that is just the size one person can look at it. You don't (and can't) get that level of interaction with a huge painting. Not saying I'm right or smarter or anything. It's just my personal bias. I guess some people want to say different thing with their work. Some yell and some whisper and some of us simply do not wish to impose. It's a dilemma, alright.

Friday, March 23, 2007

The Crabby Crafter

I am thinking of changing the name of my blog to Postcards from the Crabby Crafter. I am NOT a crabby person by nature, and, really, I am not a crafter. I just think it would be funny to do something like that fussy old lady on the Hallmarks - is it Maxine? - about stuff like burning your fingers on the hot glue gun, printing out stuff backwards and breaking sewing machine needles. Y'know, the stuff we all do all the time that can really drives us nuts. I had an idea this week for a certain book and I have made 2 of them. I will show you a picture tomorrow. I accidentally left them at the studio.
I am on Spring Break!! Nine days of busy freedom. I started working on my kits for Make It U - Chicago after school today. I do hope you can come over and take my class. I will just DIE if nobody wants to take my class. I promise it will be fun and I will tell you a great, true story about why I make purse-shaped books.
My To Do List for Spring Break
1. Prepare all materials for MIU
2. Run 25 miles
3. Figure out what I am wearing in Chicago
4. Take the girls to the dentist
5. Get my hair done - touch up roots and trim
6. Make a skirt from my precious Anna Maria fabrics
7. Finish the project pictured above.
8. Go shopping - girls need bermudas. Hard to fit. This could take all week.
9. Sleep
10. Clean
I really hope I can sit at this computer on April 1 and say that I got it all done.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Red, Black,Brown and...

Cobalt Blue. I was thinking purple or turquoise, but I had some of these blue scraps and they just worked, so blue it is. Have you ever made something a bunch of times until it becomes so boring and pedestrian that you quit making it and then you rediscover it and it seems so cool again? This is a single-sheet book structure that I first saw, made in a different way, in 2002. This one began as am 18 x 22 sheet of watercolor paper that I washed with watered down brown acrylic paint and then stamped with foam printing plates. The book is made by folding, cutting and refolding. No glue or sewing. It gives you front and back covers and pages 1 thru 6, so it's not too big a task to finish a whole book.

What am I putting in this book? Not sure yet. Working on it. I think this is the project I am going to demo at the CPS Virtual Studio at the Chicago Quilt Show. Come see us and visit for a while.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

I'm In

My favorite magazine, Cloth Paper Scissors, announced a call for submissions on The Editor's Blog a few weeks back in conjunction with the Big Quilt Do in Chicago next month. One of the challenges was to make a 12 x 12 paper quilt with a Flower Power theme. The paper quilts chosen would be exhibited at the Quilt Show. I only decided to make a quilt last Thursday and the photos were due yesterday. My first idea was the sunflower quilt I showed you in the sketch yesterday. My second idea came to me last Friday at school. My Friday school is in the middle of a build-on and renovation. Since the holiday break, I have been in a temporary art room, with one temporary wall of bare sheet rock. Ug-ly. On the first Friday in January, my students wanted to know if we could draw on that ugly construction wall. I asked the principal and he said why not so I drew a huge garden scene on directly on the sheet rock and the kids colored, added details and drew more stuff until the wall was bursting with color. The wall is coming down soon (tomorrow, I think) so last Friday in art class, all my students drew the wall on a 12 x 18 paper and we talked about how some things just aren't meant to be permanent and how much fun it was to draw on a wall in school. So my second quilt idea, and the one I actually made, was inspired by that wall and my students. Here is a sketch of the wall.

I found out today that my quilt has been chosen for the show in Chicago. I'm happy.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Back to Good

That was last week's song, but this is NOT my journal entry. It's a sketch for something else I was working on from Thursday until yesterday afternoon. I still did my daily art, but as of Thursday, when I found out that a certain thing that I have been waiting to have resolved will not be even close to resolved for another month, I knew I had to get back to normal. Back to good. See, this thing that has been out there in the universe has had me in quite a state. I have felt frozen in my work, upset tummy, grouchy and not sleeping well. I guess I had a certain impression of things and then I find out that my impression is off base and I feel like an idoit. Not that feeling like an idiot is anything new for me. There are just some times a country girl with a delicate heart needs to be careful of getting her hopes up.
So the point is
I've gotta get my head outta the clouds or out from under a rock or wherever it' s been and make some good art.
And keep hoping that everything will turn out okay.

Monday, March 05, 2007

THE best fabric EVER invented

I got this fabric today from the friendly dude in brown. They are part of the Bohemian collection by Anna Maria Horner. Please visit her site and read her blog - such a talented girl. The fabrics are even better in person. The colors are so unusual, but spot on. I've never seen anything quite like them. Now I have to figure out what to do with them. I am sure some will turn up in journal covers.

It is cold and windy. Winter doesn't want to give up. It is less than 3 weeks until our Spring Break. We aren't going out of town or anything. Sometimes it's nice to stay home and in your pj's until 3:00pm and then kill a couple of hours at Starbucks and then rush home just in time to get dinner on the table and pretend like I was super busy all day. I will devote one whole day to cleaning the home studio and another day to cleaning the remote location. I need to throw away so much stuff. I should let my husband clean out the studios. He would throw stuff away!
This has been a strange evening - everybody was home and done with everything before 5:30! The girls only had track until 4:40 and just a dab of homework. We had supper done and mostly cleaned up before 7:00. Seems like it would be a great night to make some stuff and play in art materials, but all I want to do is go to sleep!

Sunday, March 04, 2007

It's a Long Way to the Top

If you wanna rock n roll. Or run a half marathon. Or raise kids. Or have a successful career. Or make good art.

Have you ever purposely done something in public that you are not good at? Voluntarily let you weakness show in front of everybody? More than once in a year? I am the world's worst runner, yet I did a 10k yesterday and a 5k last month. Oh yeah, and next month we have a 10 mile and then the Indy Mini in May. What was I thinking back in October when I signed up for this? Why?

I will have to make myself a cute artsy t-shirt with something cool on the back to wear at the mini. No need to waste any time on the front, but I know I will get passed bunches, so the back should be interesting as a community service.

It's ab0ut 6 weeks until the Big To Do in Chicago at the Quilt Show with Cloth Paper Scissors. If you read Cheryl's blog last week, you already know I have a super cute apron to wear.