Thursday, January 31, 2008

A Long Time Ago...

I recceived my latest issue of Quilting Arts yesterday and was especially taken with Mary Hettmansperger's collaged fabric panels. I love the way she's used every kind of flotsam and jetsom and made it all work. The shapes are interesting and everything is blended. And it reminded me of this piece I did 35 years ago, when I had no idea what I was doing and it shows. Which is why it's been hanging in the basement all these years. I guess I liked it (or what it stood for) enough not to throw it away, and now seeing Mary's work , I can define what it is about mine that kept it hidden. Brown yarn?! What was I thinking. Everything just thrown on top willy nilly. But I loved the nubby fabric and the shells. Maybe I'll clean it up and hang it for inspiration, of what not to do!

Friday, January 25, 2008

I Made This...

In her new book "Living the Creative Life" by Rice Freeman -Zachary (which looks beautiful and feels so good to touch) she asks the question, 'What does creativity mean to you?' and follows with several artists giving their answers. All different, all valid. It's writing. Drawing. Arranging a vase of flowers. It's looking at everything as being full of possibilities. Instead of seeing what is, look for what could be. Instead of just making a cake, make it an artistic adventure! So, when we were invited to a 'dead of winter we need a break Mexican party', I saw an opportunity to try something new and impress my new friends. Not sure about the impress part but they sure did clean up this cake:

Tres Leches Cake

According to my friend Brenda, who knows all about things south of the border, this is a traditional dessert. It's dense white cake to begin with and when it's cooled you pour sweetened condensed milk, evaporated milk and whole milk mixed together all over the top and let it soak in. Then you cover the whole thing with whipped cream and decorate if you like. Straighter lines of fruit next time. Nevertheless, at the end of the day I felt creatively fulfilled! Sweet tooth satisfied, too.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Dog Days of Winter

I know, it's really the dog days of summer, Sirius the Dog Star rising and all, but as I was wandering around my clean house, looking at my very organized shelves and wondering what else I could do, I thought to myself "what's going on?" I could go work on the chickadees, but I needed one of those distance days from them. You know, overworking them and needing a break. I could go walking, but I already did an hour aerobic class and a 2 mile walk and the wind chill was dropping significantly. Where did all this TIME come from? Winter. Snowed in. No outside chores save shoveling. So, I've been lighting a fire in the afternoon and curling up with gardening catalogs and books. I have finished 3 I picked up at the library, (nothing great) and will soon start Loving Frank, a story about the woman who loved Frank Lloyd Wright (I think),
on loan from my sister. Next, from the newly formed China Village Book Group will be Three Cups of Tea.
and of course after having read Deborah's blog about The Invention of Hugo Cabrey and hearing the cheers from the audience when it won the Caldecott Medal I had to check it out. Winter stimulation. Hibernation. All good.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008


Take this:

and this:
and this:

put them all together, and that's what I've been working on. Things just magically come together during the creative process. They start to 'gel' without you consciously knowing what's happening. The pieces, like a puzzle, start to fit together and before you know it you're mind is saying, "hmmmmmmm". That's why I think the artist date is so important. And shopping. When I shop, it's not so much to buy things as to mine new ideas.

So, it started with a walk in the woods. You may remember this picture from a previous post.

The rows of trees, the solitude, the quiet, all made me wonder about where all the birds and other animals were hiding. Nothing moved, except me. Those trees stayed in my mind for days. And then I read an article about those little chickadees that make their way to my feeder at the same time every day for breakfast lunch and dinner. They must be constantly active during the day to maintain their body heat because every night they can lose up to 15% of their body weight. And they survive the long cold nights by bundling together. What a sight that would be. "Hmmmm."

The background is painted with acrylics, as are the little chickadees. As of now, I'm not sure enough about the whole composition so I don't want to put it out there quite yet. But at least
my mind is working again! Hooray for that!

Friday, January 11, 2008

Sorry, no blogging...

Lately I've been dealing with a lot of emotional stuff that's been a little overwhelming, as it can be, so any creative thoughts I may have had have been pushed out of the way. BUT, I still have enough energy left to appreciate the beauty and humor surrounding me. And I do see a light at the end of the tunnel...figuratively speaking, of course.

And what a little pig this pine grosbeak is, hanging upside down to eat! You should have seen all the apple parts he had covering his beak.

Saturday, January 05, 2008

A Little...

I did manage to do a little crafting over the holidays. I saw these sweet owls on someone's blog, (sorry I can't remember who) but figured out how to put them together with some hand dyed wool I had in my stash.

Tuesday, January 01, 2008


It's what you do during winter in Maine when there's already 2 feet of snow on the ground. If you can't beat 'em and all that...

...and of course there's the beauty to enjoy. Happy New Year everyone.