Friday, October 29, 2010

Thread doodles

A couple of weeks ago I decided to go back to doing some daily doodles but this time using thread instead of ink or pencils. What was supposed to be quick daily sketches extended into several days.. and I only have those two so far:

That last one took less time, being more of a collage, but I kept reworking it to add stitches or sequins.

I envisioned to have them very subtle and minimal but I seem to want to keep adding onto them...

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Elizabeth Gilbert on nurturing creativity | Video on

Ahah! Just re-listened to this talk by Elizabeth Gilbert on creativity and loved it as much as the first time I heard it.. I never finished her book "Eat Pray Love" but this speech, her personality, sense of humor, and dead-on approach to the creative process make me want to give it another try..  Don't miss the funny part about Tom Waits being hit by his muse/genius/creative spirit while driving on the highway..

Elizabeth Gilbert on nurturing creativity Video on

And let's remember to all show up to work tomorrow..

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Dyeing antique quilts

I have been slowly buying antique quilts. Not that I'm that fond of the traditional patterns, but I love to look at the work that was put into it, all these small pieces of used fabric (often old flour sacks) recycled into a larger piece. They are usually very soft from numerous uses and washes, and I hate seeing the ones that are full of holes go to waste.  So I set up to start dyeing them, to then patch them and mend them, to give them another life..

I am still working on getting the colors I'd like, but am getting there..


I also dyed some scraps to patch the holes and I love how they came out:

Now off to the mending phase...  that's if his Majesty Oops lets me of course...

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Gallery for Oceanic Art at the Met - NYC

One of the hightlights of the week end was to walk through the "new" gallery for Oceanic Art at the Metropolitan Museum of Art (it reopened in 2007).  In the early 70's, the Met commissioned 24 Kwoma artists to paint the panels needed to make the roof of a tipical ceremonial house. The Kwoma are a group of people living in the northeastern part of New Guinea. Most Kwoma villages have at least one ceremonial house where rituals take place. They consist of a roof supported by posts and the sides are left open. This roof in the gallery is over 80 feet long and 30 feet wide, and is composed of more than 270 individual paintings on bark-like panels, painted by those 24 artists..

That should be plenty to get me started on textile designs, right there...

I also loved the line patterns on these bark clothes from Futuna Island:

and those amazing totems:

Monday, October 25, 2010

Weekend in NYC


Just came back from NYC where we had a great time just wandering around, taking in the diversity, creativity and energy that comes with all of that.. I was so in need of a fix!

I'll post later this week about the great Richter drawings we saw at the Drawing Center as well as the amazing Arts of Oceania Gallery at the Met.. 

In the meantime, a few random pictures of our walks..

We ran into the Levi's Photo Workshop, a temporary public space that offers a professional-grade production studio, vintage camera rental, digital design stations, exciting printing equipment, etc to the community.  The space and equipment looked amazing, and all seemed fun and accessible.

I'll spare you the picture we took of us.. they looked horrible despite two attempts to get better shots...

Necessary stop in Little Italy for sweets..


Big Bambu installation on the Met rooftop 

Not sure how it all holds (they use these strings to tie the bamboo together) but there must be some big brain engineering behind it all..

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Making and Recycling

I still can't believe how many plastic shopping bags we end up with at the house, despite our efforts to use reusable totes.  I sometimes stitch on them and lately, I started experimenting with fusing them together.

So from this:

I made this:

Because I fuse 6 to 8 layers together, the plastic becomes sturdier and has a whole different texture to it which I like. Then, as I can never find the perfect sketchbook (which would ideally hold calendar pages and to do lists  that could be discarded as well as sketch pages and miscellaneous notes to keep), I made my own and it looks like this:

The screw posts make it easy to get rid of the old and only keep what I need.  Of course, my favorite part is the lemon bag net that's frayed on the cover:


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