Monday, August 25, 2014

Prep work

I am trying to finish some things up before we leave on our trip in a couple of weeks. This finish work is a little slow and boring, but produces a nice feeling of satisfaction when I have a group of work all ready for a show. These are the small pieces that I have been mounting on stretcher bars or framing. Today I finished the backsides with artists tape, a hanging wire and a label with my name, email address and information about the care of a textile work. I like a nice, neat back on my work.

These are the finished pieces.

I have also added most of these and a few others to my "small work" page with prices. You can access that page from the tabs just above this post.

Whew! Feels good to have that done.


Sunday, August 24, 2014


I'm experimenting today. I'm still fiddling with the new camera and now, this very moment I am trying out a new app (Blogsy) for writing my blog on my iPad. It seems much more full-featured than what I have been using. So far it has allowed me to link the word Blogsy to their web site. Couldn't do that with the old app. Now, if I can place a photo, center it and change its size I will be a happy iPad blogger.

Nice. I'm a fan.



Saturday, August 23, 2014

Isn't technology grand?

And frustrating. 

I really do love all these new gizmos. I am totally dependent on my smartphone and find endless, endless pleasure in my iPad. And I remember, in the '60s, when my dad brought home a handheld calculator that could add, subtract, multiply and divide. He put his slide rule away and never looked back. We all viewed it as just short of a miracle. That was the beginning of wondrous things...

We just bought a new camera. We are traveling next month and wanted something small, but with more features than our phones. Lucky for us we know someone else in need of the same kind of camera and he had done all the research, which he gladly shared with us. It is a dandy little camera, with a 30x zoom. ( Just a few years ago I thought my 12x zoom was the bee's knees...)  and this camera has wifi. Imagine that! Wifi. I'm probably way behind, and you already know all this, but wifi means the camera will magically send my photos directly to my iPad or other devices and, just think how easy that makes blogging those photos. (!!!)

So, to try this all out, I wandered around and took photos today. I zoomed up high into the trees, and took shots from across the yard and zoomed into low growing flowers. Then I pulled out the manual to find out how to send them to the iPad. Here is where it got frustrating. I carefully followed each direction, camera in one hand, iPad in the other hand and manual in my other other hand— or something. Nothing happened. I took a deep breathe, started over and did it all again, step by step, by step. Nothing happened. I reread the manual, I read the "help" section on the iPad app, I rechecked all the settings on the camera, then on the iPad. I tried again. NO-THING! Now I am sweating and I start pushing buttons and trying anything and manage to freeze up the camera, which it seems can only be unfrozen by removing the battery and then putting it back in. I pace around a little bit, breathe deeply. I'm into my second hour of fiddly-fie-fiddling with this demon object!  I shake it out and begin again, direction 1, 2 ...  And voila! It works. I watch, in amazement, as my photos pop onto the screen of my iPad. Don't ask me how it worked that time. It just did. It was a miracle. Or magic. 

Here are my photos:

Now I need a glass of wine. 

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Sunday in my City

I love having house guests. It is an opportunity to be a tourist in my own city. I always tell people I am from Portland, and I really feel I am even though I no longer live in Portland proper. We are out on the edges—technically in no city at all—so I can choose where I call home. Sometimes weeks go by when I don't set foot in the city, but I do love downtown Portland and, everchanging as it is, there is something new to see every time we venture downtown. Thanks to visits from my friend Kristin LaFlamme and my cousin Ginger and the marvelous Quilt! Knit! Stitch! Show, I have spent more time in the city in the past two weeks than I have in the past six months.

Sunday, Ginger, Ray and I went down to the Bijou Cafe for breakfast, then walked along the river and through the Saturday Market. It was a perfect Portland day. See— it really doesn't rain here all the time!

Outside Voodoo Donuts. Blues guitar. She was good!

Food cart city.


A Benson Bubbler. You have to love a city whose founders put water fountains all through the public streets. 

Saturday Market, under the bridge 

Ray makes a purchase

Henna tattoos

Dog creating a puddle right in front of the bench where we were sitting. It's a "dog town"

"Why complain when it rains? This is what it means to be free."

Saturday, August 16, 2014

A Very Big Day

August has been an especially busy month for me. Today was packed. My cousin Ginger is visiting and we got up this morning and got on the Max train headed for the Oregon Convention Center. I have been looking forward to the Quilt! Knit! Stitch show for more than a year and this was the day! This show was the first in Portland, presented by Quilts Inc. who produce the famous International Quilt Festival every fall in Houston, as well as others around the country. Their shows are the premier quilt events in the world and they chose Portland for their first show to include knitting and other forms of stitching and fiber art. The show was top notch. The attendance was disappointing.

I have been asked to serve on the advisory committee for this show and attended a lunch meeting today. The lower-than-expected attendance was the focus of our discussion. We hope that next year more people will know about it and come. If you missed it this year, I am sorry.  It was a beautiful show! 

Quilt by The wonderful Jane Sassaman.

I always love seeing Bodil Gardener's latest work. Utterly charming!

The venders were great too. My fabric purchases from designer Marcia Derse. 

The other big event of the day was my grandson, Marco's 4th birthday. Marco is our ray of sunshine and loved every minute of his special day. 

When Sofia came to my studio this week she had an idea for a special gift she wanted to make for Marco— his own super hero cape. He loved it! There is a big yellow "M" on the back for Super Marco. 

Tonight was also the reception for the Sneak Preview show for the Washington County Artists Open Studios at the Washington County Museum.  Sadly I have not yet figured out how to be in two places at once, so I missed it. 

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Little Things

I have been kind of doodling away at little stuff for the past month and decided to try to pull it all together and see if I could make them presentable  enough to offer for sale at a couple events I am participating in this fall. The other day I dragged my houseguest, Kristin LaFlamme across town to my favorite junky-funky art supply store for a supply of canvas stretcher bars.

After putting one together I am gluing a pice of foamcore to it, then covering all with black linen fabric and mounting my little stitched pieces on them.  Here are my first efforts. 

I like them. It is a simple presentation. Last year you might remember that I framed a bunch of small pieces. I like both. 

Remember last week I blogged about my creative process then tagged my friend Peg Weber to post this week. Her post is up here: I loved seeing some little fabric pieces made by her late mother Shirley Falconer. Shirley was a dear lady and a friend in the High Fiber Diet and Columbia FiberArts groups I belong to. Peg's work is so beautiful and another treat to see, so I really recommend her blog!

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Sorrow Floats

Hasn't it been an odd summer? Do you feel it, or is it just me, absorbing loss and sorrow in my own small world and in the larger world? This week's news was almost that fabled last straw. The lights went out. Joy—gone. Or so it feels. 

I keep finding myself doodling hearts. A cliché, I know, but a reminder that despite disaster and war; and bombs and planes full of people plummeting from the sky; the deaths of friends and heroes; and sadness and worry, life goes on, is good and it is love that saves us. 

In one of my favorite books, the Hotel New Hampshire, the Berry family dog, Sorrow, dies. The family cannot bear to part with him, so one of the sons stuffs him. In a tragic plane crash that kills two members of the family, Sorrow's taxidermied body bobs to the surface of the lake and it is observed that "Sorrow floats" which becomes a catch phrase as the family encounters life's highest and lowest moments and accepts that a measure of sorrow is a necessary part of a full, rich life. 

It's a lesson we all finally learn, or need to learn, but can we, please, for now, just stop with the bad news? Sorrow floats. It does, but I could do with a little break. How about you?