Saturday, February 27, 2010

Here is an example of not-quite-sping in the Bay Area. Traffic, of course (it was not raining so many people were out), but the tree is what I was trying to get a picture of. I was in a moving car and the batteries in my camera were tired so this is the best I could do. The tree, a Chinese Magnolia I think, was spectacular with its flamboyant pink foliage.

But this day, the first Friday in February, was my day with my eldest child. We went museum hopping - the De Young for the Amish quilt exhibit and the Palace of the Legion of Honor for the Cartier exhibit.

The Amish exhibit was stunning! And, as luck would have it, the owner of the quilts was there and we got to talk to him. The quilts were very well hung and lit. They glowed! If you have the chance, go see this exhibit. It is amazing what can be done with plain fabric!

The Cartier exhibit was also stunning. The jewels of course were gorgeous and the designs fabulous. There were several tiaras. My daughter choose the very first one we saw which was all diamonds and done in the Bel Epoch. Very swirly with LOTS of small diamonds. I liked a black metal one with red jewels.

Even though each exhibit was different, at their core they both reflected excellent design and unique creativity. It showed me that beauty doesn't need to be expensive to be valuable.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Red twisted knit scarf

I finally finished the second twisted knit scarf! I corraled my grandchild into modeling it for me! The first one I did (see the 11-9-09 post) I neglected to follow directions but it turned out interesting anyway! This one I followed the directions. It was much easier to do and worked faster. I was so pleased with the way it turned out that I decided I was ready to tackle a sweater. I had seen a pattern for a sweater-vest last fall while perusing pattern books. I managed to find the same book and purchased it, needles and a huge skein of cheap black yarn. I was down visiting my Mom in SoCal at the time. It would have been a good idea for me to just buy the book with the pattern in it first, I later found out. I did do a gauge swatch which is new and different behaviour for me! I cast-on and merrily knitted away, only having a little trouble keeping all the stitches on the straight needles. Then disaster struck! The end of one of the needlles came off! I went back to square one and read all the instructions! Wow, what a revelation! I needed round needles! The other ittle problem I noticed was that cheap yarn is really difficult to knit.

On my errands the other day I came across a lovely little yarn shop in Dublin, CA (name forgotten) where I proceeded to purchase the #6 round needles, in bamboo, and I also ordered a set of 47" round needles so I can make a mobius scarf that Cat Bhorde demos on her website. The cast-on for that is really interesting and I have been wanting to try it.

I am enjoying the world of knitting. What started out as a way to calm down and relax has turned into a passion! It is really hard to limit myself to just two projects in knitting at a time.

2010 ATCs #4

After thinking about Diego Rivera and Frida Khalo Edvard Munch came to mind. This is the result - my version of "The Scream". Once again I used the Prismacolor pens. In looking this drawing over I see a bit of VanGogh's "Starry Starry Night" in it, too. Maybe that will be my next attempt.

I have a file in MyPictures called 'Inspiration'. The problem with it is that I never look at it after I have taken the picture! What is that about? Partly, I think, is that I usually draw these little guys when I am away from my computer, usually away from home, with a few minutes of time free. I find that when I am with the computer, I am playing games on it! I know it is a waste of time, but I tell myself that it keeps my mind busy. My current favorite game is 'Bookworm'.

Today, on BART, I sat next to a young man with a really nice portfolio so I struck up a conversation. We talked about where we went to school and I asked him if he knew about ATCs. He didn't so I pulled mine out of my purse and showed him and the lady (no relation) next to him. He gave me the name of a gallery that might want to exhibit them! So tomorrow I am calling that gallery. Anybody have drawn ATCs that you would like to exhibit? Maybe we can get a show up and wouldn't that be fun!

2010 ATCs

Here is another of my ATCs for this year. It is my favorite one so far. I saw an article about Frida Khalo and that made me think about Diego Rivera and that produced this image, inspired by DR's "Flower Seller". One of the things I like about it is that is is monochromatic. I used a blue Prismacolor pen - a new tool for me - which I really like. I have three colors and black and they are really smooth to use.

I have been in the throes of gloom, due partly, I think to the gloomy (say rain rain rain rain) weather and partly to my lack of space. The other day I decided to try to get out of it and looked through some magazines which have been collecting. One article I found talked about not having enough space to do art. The author's fix was great - she started doing ATCs with gouache, an opaque watercolor medium which handles a lot like oil paints. One of the mediums I miss using because of my lack of space is oil paints. So, when I next get to an art store I am coming home with a set of gouache paints. I may have some in the black hole of my storage but they don't keep well or for years so I expect buying new ones will serve me better.

Friday, February 12, 2010

2010 Artist Trading cards

Hello again! She's BAACK....This is another of my 2010 ATCs. Can you guess the title? OK, I'll help...Star Buck. Another done while drinking money I mean coffee!

I went on a shopping spree the first week of the month. Spent an afternoon in Macy's. Unusual for me as I never shop at Macy's - it was, in the past, too hard to find my way around (lame, huh?!) but it was actually much better. I think ADA people got after them. Anyway, I returned a gift and purchased a lovely new lipstick and looked at purses and belts. Found the (almost) perfect purse but not at the perfect price but couldn't find the perfect or even close belt so went home with a new red lipstick. Kind of appropriate for this ATC.

A couple of days later I went to pick up the grandchild. It was sunny and beautiful at home so just wore a denim jacket. Naturally, when I had traveled the 45 miles to my destination it was pouring down rain! So off to the coat factory I went. Actually found the perfect rain coat - three-quarter length in a PL (that's petite large). The shoulders hit in the perfect place, it goes around my middle and has a removable liner! Then I had to buy a purse that matched. I usually wear grama black shoes and don't plan on getting another pair anytime soon so needed a brown (did I say the raincoat is brown?) and black purse. Found a funky faux jaguar pattern purse with all the requisite pockets and pouches and said to myself "self, why not -you can do funky". The purse has elicited some laughs from my daughters and I have found it convenient.

That is the extent of my shopping mania for this month. Pretty tame by some standards but not for me and avid anti-shopper!

More ATCs to come next as they seem to be the only art I am doing.