Tuesday, June 13, 2006

It is still Tuesday

Whew, made the deadline with an hour and a half to spare. Good news! I was chosen again to exhibit in the second First Friday on July 7 in front of Cafe Japan on Courthouse Square. Stop by to see me. 5-8 p.m. This is exciting because I was told up front that too many artists had applied and there wouldn't be repeats.

I will also have a piece in the Gallery One 'Blues and Jazz' challenge. "Muddy Waters" is a dicharged black piece, hand painted, stamped and machine quilted with a Muddy Waters portrait. No pictures yet. I'll post one when I get it. Here's a shot of what he looked like in real life. I like to do threadwork portraiture. Here is a picture of Stephanie, my friend Pam's daughter. This was her Christmas present.

Ted talks about claiming your independence. I always thought that I had to stick to a certain style that had my individual type of work, but I found that I love to create eclectic pieces. Now that I'm playing with surface design, I may find a specific voice. I love working with discharged blacks and trying to make them come alive with various techniques. I know he was talking about making the teacher's art, but I have never done that intentionally. My thoughts are now straying to the idea of how to get the public to crave my work.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

It's Tuesday, I must have a View

I'm not getting thru this book as fast as I thought I would. (It's a teeny thing!) I loved the portion about Ben Shahn using two words to describe how to make art. "Do Everything!" Then Ted goes on to speculate that a University education is not needed by everyone to be a great artist. He advises: "Workshops offer aspiring artists arguablly the best - and absolutely the most concentrated - of all educational possibilities."

That really struck a chord with me, as I never had a University art education. I had an art high school education with continuing education at my community college. But I have spent the last several years spending every penny I can on workshops. Since I live on the West Coast, I go to Art Quilt Tahoe and Claremont and Asilomar, with various other classes thrown in whenever I can get to them. I have studied with Jane Dunnewold, Caryl Bryer Fallert, Hollis Chatelain, Laura Wasilowski, Joan Colvin, Katie Pasquini and too many others to think aabout right now. Do I copy their styles? No. I study with them to learn their techniques so I can put them to use in my own work.

Orland states that a really good workshop generates a level of intensity that's virtually impossible to achieve in the classroom. It's true. We do work together all day, and then continue long into the night to perfect what we've learned. I've made some amazing friends this way. Orland goes on to say that every student figures out sooner or later that the really important discoveries don't occur during the formal sessions, they happen in the spaces between the sessions, over lunch/dinner. I've learned more about artists by inviting the teachers for a bit of hospitality in my room during these seminars.

If I don't learn anything else from this book, the above validates my feelings about and journey into the art world.

Monday, June 05, 2006

Art Walk Silk Wall Quilt Sold

The first night of First Friday Art Walk in Santa Rosa (Sonoma County, California) has happened. I was lucky enough to be chosed to participate. Even though the attendance was rather low, those who came by my exhibit were so excited that our city finally stepped up to the art world. I exhibited 25 art quilts and people were very generous in their comments. Most had never seen art quilts/fiber art. I tried to display a variety of styles as I am very eclectic in my approach to art quilts. I make whatever moves me at the moment.

I was lucky enough to sell a couple of pieces and that made me VERY happy. The art walk will run through November, so I hope to be asked to exhibit again.

I completed a queen sized bed quilt and 2 lap quilts this week and have another lap quilt ready to go. Then I got lucky and am going to be quilting a Beatles T-shirt quilt. The woman just wanted meandering, but I talked her into more elaborate quilting. After all, it's the Beatles! She also went to the first Beatles concert in San Francisco. I asked her if she remembered how much the tickets were. She didn't. I do... only $6.50. Pretty amazing as I hear Barbra Streisand will be charging $750. for her "final" concert.

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

The View from My Studio Door

While pondering reading "The View from the Studio Door", I decided to check out the view from my studio door. Does it give me inspiration? Yes. I am lucky enough to have a room with a view and a balcony to boot. This was my view one winter day. It almost never snows where I live. So I cherish this view, especially on warm sunny days. I am now able to stop and "smell the roses" whenever I need a break. I do have a small rose garden, but it needs a bit of pruning. Should I read or prune? I committed to the book, so I shall read.

What is art? Oh gosh, who knows. Some believe you have to make art in order for it to be "art". Does a spider make art when he spins a web? Webs have great design elements and excellent contrast. They even serve a function. Oops! Should art serve a function? Look at a Frank Lloyd Wright home or a beautifully designed chair. The function I want is to have a piece of art "move" me. I want to look at a beaded kitchen and swoon at the spectacle, but then, I want to know who, what, when, where, how and why. I want to know why the art world is agog at a four-year-old's paintings. Then I ponder my biggest question. I want to know what is my art. I just know that I have to make it and it makes me feel good to make it. That is just enough for me for now.

My View

While pondering reading "The View from the Studio Door", I decided to check out the view from my studio door. Does it give me inspiration? Yes. I am lucky enough to have a room with a view and a balcony to boot. I am able to stop and "smell the roses" whenever I need a break. I do have a small rose garden, but it needs a bit of pruning. Should I read or prune? I committed to the book, so I shall read. What is art? Oh gosh, who knows. Some believe you have to make art in order for it to be "art". Does a spider make art when he spins a web? These webs have great design elements and excellent contrast. They even serve a function. Oops!

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Find your way

Melanie Testa has created a group to read and decipher Ted Orland's "The View From the Studio Door." We'll blog on Tuesdays. Join us!

Once a Month

It seems I'm not using my blog as much as I thought. It's still the time thing. So I joined a blog ring about a book (Ted Orland's "View From the Studio Door") so I will post on Tuesdays. I can't seem to get their button on my site!!

This is a detail from a small piece I did called Rainbow Tears as a result of the latest hurricane season. It shows how it affected me that so many people of color were affected, and even though I am not a person of color, my tears are mixed with theirs because of the lack of response by the American authorities. Shame on them I have already done a "Missing New Orleans" Mardi Gras quilt that I posted last year.

What's new in Santa Rosa is the Woodstock happening around town. I had applied to be a Woodstock artist, but becuase of my surgeries and complications, it didn't happen. They are now being placed all around town. Here are some unedited pictures of them before they got out to the public. Karen did 2 again this year. Love the Elvis!

I'm participating in the First Friday Santa Rosa artwalk on June 2 indoors and outdoors at Portofino's restaurant in Santa Rosa . Rain, Rain, go away! Stop by to see and shop.

I'm working on my Etsy site, but having problems resizing my pictures to fit on the site. Any hints?

Friday, April 07, 2006


Yes, I know what day it is, but being in the hospital for close to a month and trying to recover from this mess, I am just now getting paperwork ready for taxes. I had purchased a program and was going to be soooo organized, but when health issues arise, all bets are off. Tomorrow is another day..... My mind kept going back to fabric and I wonder how I will finish off these two samples. They are dyed, overdied, stamped, and stencilled. I may stamp or stencil images or text in the boxes and then put on a wash to tone down the brightness. Then add alittle bling!!!

I got a nice email from Jane Dunnewold. What a gracious lady. I was truly surprised to get the new Surface Design magazine with a great article by her with references to and pictures of Connie Tiegal's work and Joy Stocksdale's book and then found an article by Joy in the same magazine. Jane never mentioned the article in her class. She is a humble woman. I am lucky to be in a Surface Design group with Joy Stocksdale and I hope I can learn some more from her. I am considering taking Jane's correspondance course. I just have to justify the money and try to figure out if I have the time to put into the projects, what with work, longarm quilting, teaching my classes and my own creations. I am waiting to see what the results of my latest CT scans reveal.

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

more claremont

Here's Jane in all her glory with some student work. It was good seeing Deb Roby. I think she may be a new Dunnewold Diva!

Some more discharched and stamped work. Back to reality tomorrow!

Claremont teachers

Okay, here's Elizabeth Barton and Katie Pasquini and Terry Mamgat at AQC.

Monday, April 03, 2006

QuiltArt List members at Claremont

Gerrie Congdon and Liz Berg are also taking Jane's class and Carol Suto is taking Terry Mangat's class. Guess who the rowdies are??

Works in Progress

We've been dyeing, painting, discharging, stamping, stencilling, screening and foiling to create the multi layered look of complex cloth. Here are some of my samples.

Art Quilt Claremont!!

Day 3 at Art Quilt Claremont with Jane Dunnewald is done. What fun we had today! But I sure was tired. These pictures show the view of San Francisco from the hotel. There has been so much rainb and clouds that this is the most we've seen of The City in three days. We have students here from Paris, France; Costa Rica; and other states, but most participants are from California. It is a small group for the first year. Elizabeth Barton, Terry Mangat and Katie Pasquini are also teaching.

Friday, February 03, 2006

More Taft Street Winery Show

Sharing wall space with former President Taft is kind of a hoot. I hung my soft painting series done with Caran d'Ache watercolor crayons. I teach my method at my studio. But then I also hung my "Wardrobe Malfunction" since the Super Bowl is Sunday and the piece was made as a result of the infamous incident at the 2004 Super Bowl. And now I have a few challenges to complete. I am doing the Travel Challenge and Changing Perspectives for the ArtQuilt list. Plus I have a new series woking through my brain!!

More Fiber Art Show

Here is some of Genie's work nestled among the wine boxes (and a very good wine it is, Taft Street Winery wins many medals in competitions). So if you are in Northern California, stop by Taft Street Winery, Barlow Road, Sebastopol. The show runs through February and March. Stop by to view the show and taste the wine. If you live locally, you are invited to a reception February 12, 2-4. Make sure to say Hi!
The hardest part about this is deciding what to put in the show and then getting all the documenation correct.

Fiber Art Show at Winery

So, you say, Christmas has been over for awhile and the puppies are safe in their new homes. What have I been doing? Most of my free time as been spent getting ready for my Fiber Art Show at Taft Street Winery in the Sonoma County wine country. What a project! I finished hanging the last of the pieces today and even remembered my camera, so I have pictures! I have 35 pieces hanging and have a basket of Art Cards available. My friend Genie Becker is joining me with her first showing, hanging 11pieces.