Monday, September 29, 2008

What isn't going to Quilt National

This year I had the audacity to enter two things into Quilt National...couldn't show them before but since they have said Thanks, but no thanks, I can share them with you!

Below is a large Color Blocks piece aptly titled: Color Blocks 40 (you can tell how many I have done by the numbers...)

This was done with commercial fabrics so I had questions about their interest since they tend to like hand dyed, hand painted, etc.

And then, this one, called California Dreaming 3, Central Valley.

This piece is the third of a series I am doing about different parts of California. I really liked it and it is really big but I guess it just wasn't good enough...or, better yet, there were a lot more that were far better than this.Oh well, off they go as entries to other get accepted in some and you get rejected in far more! The way of the artist!

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Shut Down and Books to Sell

After my last post, Blogger bot decided that I was a spam blog...even tho I have read everything the blog information page sent me to, I still don't understand it. I had to respond and ask them to check my blog out to verify that indeed, I am a real person!

Two and a half days later, they have let me back on my blog.

Yesterday, Rachel, my high school assistant, helped me take down a whole bunch of books that I want to get rid of. She then typed up the list, which, double spaced, is 6 pages long.

Now I am trying to figure out the best way to do this...that is...sell them...

So I think what I will do is to ask people who are interested to contact me via email and I will send them the list to review. They can then chose what they want, and if I still have it, I will send a bill via Pay Pal. Lots of people on the quiltart list gave me various ideas but since I have a lot of books, I thought maybe this would be the best way. I just have to go through the list and then add on a sale price for the books. Then I will be able to figure out postage per person.

I had thought about putting about 15 up on the blog at a time but then wondered if someone would like to get another one several groups later and that it would cost more to mail several, if you want a list, let me know.

I am in the process of doing my proposal for the Juvenile Justice Center which has to be turned in Tuesday afternoon. This is to let them know what and how much art I can do and what my pricing it. Then, in a couple of weeks I go for the oral interview with the selection board. I hope, I hope, I hope!!!

And, I am waiting to hear if I get in to Quilt week they should send out the notifications.

I do have two of my Life Circles going to PIQF and one going to Chandler for Art Quilts III. Guess I should put some sleeves on them. Oh yeah, and I need to mount some more of my smaller works to go off to Scottsdale...

So what do I do? Sit in a slump playing Spider Solitare. Oh well, the past couple of days I have been really busy doing clean up in my studio so I guess I can sit a spell.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Trying to get back into the swing of things

I've been home now since September 16 and I still feel very much out of the loop.

After returning home during the morning from San Antonio, we dropped my dad off and then went home. I was pooped.

I spent 8 days with my father, all day and all night. There was one day during which he went on a tour and was gone for 8 hours, but other than that we were together the entire time.

The hardest part was his smoking. It's also hard to sleep in the same room with someone who gets up several times during the night (I do, too, but I get up, go to the potty and jump right back into bed and back to sleep) and stays up for a while, having a cigarette, etc. I worry about him falling asleep with a lit cigarette so I don't go back to sleep until he does. Oh well, it was only for a week.

Then on Wednesday I picked Dad up bright and early for a doctor's appointment. That killed the morning. But I couldn't get into things when I got home as my daughter had called that morning to see if we could babysit as the babysitter's baby had a fever. My dh went over for the first shift and then I went over after I dropped off my dad.

Caring for a baby isn't too bad except when they crawl they go really fast and get into the bathroom and play in the toilet bowl water which hadn't been flushed by big brother. Then it is wash up time, then snack time, then nap time, then play time, then eat time, then play time, then nap time, (for me too) and then bottle time and then more play time until finally the parents come home...I limped home dead beat and that was with only one grandson.

The next day it was a full day of babysitting the baby, Ashton, and then on Friday it was a full day of both boys but at our house. Our house is not baby proof and Ashton's favorite thing is to head to the bookcase with early American pottery pitchers. He loves them but so do I so I have to swoop him up before there is major trouble. Jacob spent a lot of time watching the demolition of the old house next to us (which is still going on).

And then my on line class, Better Art by Design, started so I got that uploaded and set up.

While I was in Texas I met several cousins on my father's side that we had never met before. It was really great and we spent a lot of time talking family stuff. I have been involved in genealogy for thirty years and used to do all my research via mail, carbon copies, hopes and prayers. Now the internet makes it so much easier to connect with people and information but also to add information that is not well founded. I like to have the documentation to back it up.

Since I had been working on the Smith side of the family, I spent time on the weekend scanning about 400 family pictures and putting them into the right family files. I can't tell you how many more hundreds I have to do as this was just a small drop in the bucket.

My DH has been working to get the last of his "have-to-have" stuff out of three metal sheds in the back back part of our lot as we swapped that part of the lot with the next door neighbors in exchange for part of their property which is in front and right next to our garage. We are having the plans drawn up for a garage which will house our motorhome and upstairs in the storage area, which will be about 20' x 40" I will eventually be able to have my studio all organized...some day.

Meanwhile, I am still not getting any art done. I did go down to my studio, which is also in a somewhat chaotic mess as the artist who has a 10-20' space in the back of my space is moving out. She has been there and selling stuff while I was gone and is trying to get moved out by the first of the month. Then I take over that space.

And, then, I have to get my studio all cleaned up and respectable as it is on the PIQF tour which will include about 10 Japanese women who are visiting for the show.

Got to get myself into gear. I have been thinking about a series on houses created in a similar way that I have been doing the Color Blocks. I have also been thinking and drawing ideas for three dimensional work...something I would like to do more off...oh well, get my self-discipline back, get rid of distractions and get to work!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

I'm in San Antonio

Well, my dad and I arrived in San Antonio on Tuesday night so that we could be here for the evacuation of hurricane Ike...not really but that seems to be what is happening. We can here so my dad could attend a ship's reunion and he needs me in order to travel. Also, because this is our home town we could see lots of family.

On Wed. we went out to the cemetery to check my mom's spot and be sure the spot is still there for my dad (not really but it sounds good) It was hard to watch my dad at my mom's head stone as he has missed her greatly for the past 8 years, as have I but then he saw her all the time.

We've been seeing family all around town and have connected with a cousin we couldn't find, the daughter of one of dad's we have found a whole new section of living relatives! What fun!
I have been doing genealogy for over 30 years and with the advent of the computer it is so much easier to do and much faster. But one really has to be careful of what one accepts as truth as so many people don't do their own research but rely on something someone else wrote down. I like to have all those sources in my hand!

Tomorrow he takes off on a bus trip for the day and I get to wander around San Antonio by myself to take pictures. We are down on the south side of town and just south of us things get pretty run down but that means there are some great pictures to take!

Well, my on line class, Better Art by Design, starts on Friday, Sept 19.
Sign up with the link on the right hand side bar of this blog.

See ya!

Saturday, September 06, 2008

New Work and the Rejected Journal Quilt

So, first we have the rejected journal was created as the San Francisco Bay Area was sweltering under high heat and a large amount of smoke in the air from fires both north and south of us. A double whammy. All I could think of was HOT!

I have finally given you an image to look at...

And now, the gratuitous images of the grandsons:
Ashton in our new stroller to take him out for walks...Doug brought it back from a Montana yard sale

And of course we have to have a picture of the two boys, Ashton and Jacob...Jacob has his power drill (without the bit) shinning in his becomes many different things for him.

This piece is tentatively called Pathways and was done on Labor Day...I need to face it or bind it...not sure which. This isn't very big...about 30 x 24 or so
And here is a detail. It is all made from batiks but dark ones.
The same day I did this one which is a going back to my underwater world. Not sure what to call it yet. The black background is not quilted at all. It's only somewhere around 24 x 24"
Best of all...I have a new assistant! Rachel is a junior in high school and is now working for me for five hours a week. Yesterday she went through returned postcards and corrected addresses and deleted names that we don't have good addresses for and also got entered several mailing lists that needed to be added. That felt so good!

Today she went sorting through a bunch of my ephemera so I could be a little more organized. It also got rid of a box. I scanned 400 photos today of non-family for use with my collages. That got three big envelops down to one small some point I will put ephemera packages up for sale.

I have decided it is time to get rid of a bunch of traditional quilting books that I haven't look at for years so will be posting those before long.

And, my Better Art by Design Class starts up on line on Sept 19! There is still room available! Sign up via the side bar.

Monday, September 01, 2008

A Tremendous Labor Day

This morning I got down to the studio around 9am. The weather was nice and never did get too hot to work. When I get to the studio I usually take a little time to just get the newspaper, pick up some stuff, read an art book for a little while...just a nice quiet place...and of course, put on the music.

I love Nita Leland...her art is wonderful and her books are great. I read and reread them frequently.

Nita has put out "The New Creative Artist" which was redone from her original book, The Creative Artist. She has great things to say about getting into the flow of working. So I was reading some of her stuff and I realized that I wanted to revisit my Coral Sea series and work on sea anemones again. I was also thinking a lot about my streamers series and how much fun it was to work on. So, out came the batiks which were already pre-fused and I just started cutting out streamer type thingies that now look like underwater grass. But it is all on a background of deep black and the batiks are browns to purples and I used one that has some yellow in it. Got that cut out and fused.

And then I decided it was time to work on something that I had sketched a long time ago in my sketchbook and had been in the back of my mind for a long time. When that happens, you just have to do it.

Well, it became a heavily quilted piece with lots of close vertical lines, some columns of circles, and then three columns of batiks in purples and browns stacked like teetering rocks. Was that ever fun! Went to work on George and got the balance rocks piece all quilted, blocked and cut square. Then I quilted the other little piece, got it blocked and cut square and both have come home with me to do the binding on them.

I also got my piece for Quilt National all done and photographed so now I can do the digital work on that and get the entry sent it.

The juices are flowing.

Nita's book is also my bible when it comes to understanding the creative process. She helps to remind me that not all creative time is spent doing the actual creating but there is much "mind" time to spend...thinking about ideas, working them out, brainstorming, writing, etc. A good book to have.