Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Still Life

One of the things that winter does, for me, is to bring my focus in close. Being indoors makes me notice small things, details, fragments, little accidental vignettes. Big, vast landscapes are of another season.

This morning I opened a kitchen cabinet, as I was putting my breakfast together, and what I saw inside struck me as a still life.

I have always been attracted to a kind of unpretentious painting of everyday objects, like this one by Cezanne.

So quiet, so still. Still life. Empty bowls have a special charm...

I was waiting, I said, to begin something new, but I couldn't wait.


Friday, February 12, 2016

Between Ending and Beginning

I am in a place of finishing things and not ready to begin anything new, which is a rather nice place to be right now. I bound my finished Quito quilt, using the same purply plaid that I backed it with. That felt like a daring choice and I worried about it but now that it's done I love it. It reads solid from a distance, but close up you see its true nature and the way it speaks, subtly to the other fabrics in the piece.
A lot of art quilters don't use traditional bindings and I don't always, but sometimes I just feel like a piece needs a more definitive edge and a tight little binding just works.
We are planning a trip to Central America in a few weeks, which is another reason not to start anything new right now. I'm distracted by travel planning. I'm shopping for things like good mosquito repellent and the right combination of comfortable and practical clothing and wondering if I ought to renew my tetanus shot (yes) and if I need a new suitcase (no). I'm trying to leave all obligations to friends and family in good order and have started making piles and lists. Truthfully, I always enjoy this part of anticipating a trip. I blogged about the little sketch journal I made to take with me and I've been thinking about pens and pencils that will be good to use on that tan paper. I tried out several combinations on little scraps of the paper and have assembled the tools I think I'll take—not the tools depicted in my test sketches, but the tools used to make them!
And because I can't stay out of my studio, I putter. I plan future projects. I comb the Internet for ideas and inspiration. I have become pretty hooked on bookbinding tutorials and ideas and am populating my Pinterest pages with images and trying out some of the quick ideas I find.
Did you know you can use reuse paper grocery bags in creative ways? It took less than 10 minutes to open up a bag flat, soak it in water, wad it up, then smooth it out again and iron it dry to create an interesting leathery effect.
Yup. I'll use that one of these days.
So, you see I don't have a lot to share here for awhile. From endings toward beginnings and winter toward spring. And so it goes...