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a lazy week and more...

a lazy week

I just haven't felt like myself or been in the mood to do anything but work on the string baby quilt I'm making.  Yesterday, I finally went to my studio and puttered around -- but after a couple of hours, came home. I have been reading.

Finally, today, I was forced into doing something creative.  I've been working on this little piece all afternoon, and amazingly, it has come together.  All done but the edges.  Hooray!  I have had these units sitting around for four or five years and have had them on-and-off the wall a dozen times.  I was trying to make a bigger piece that did not want to be bigger than 8-½" x 11". Ha!  Done.  The orientation will be up to the future owner.

Has this encouraged me or motivated me to do more small pieces? Hmmm...maybe.  It's a start, anyway.

The NJ weather has been depressing. If this were February, it would be a heat wave; if it were October, it would be lovely and mild.  But it's damn near June and it has been windy, in the low 60's, and cloudy/drizzly. BLEH!  Memorial day is forecast to be more of same, which is a bummer because our condo's pool opens this weekend. (Not that I EVER go in the water, but it would be nice to sit in the nice weather and read or schmooze). Sigh...I won't even begin to tell you about the pollen "tsunami" that the papers are writing about.  I have not stopped sneezing and I wish I could blame it on fabric dust.

So now you know my whole story. Now, I have to go clean up the mess I made while I worked on the above piece. Aren't you glad you tuned in?


home again

It is Thursday, May 14.  I got home last Saturday from a three-states-in ten days- whirlwind of teaching and am just about recovered.  Mother's Day was pretty restful: I told my kids that if they wanted to see me, they had to come here.  So my daughters came, brought tulips, and put out a lovely spread for Sunday brunch,chez moi.

All week I have alternated between crashing on the sofa and walking a couple of miles a day in this New Jersey windy, October-like weather, to get rid of the extra lbs. I gained while I was away.  This happens every time: I am well-fed and there is no time or place for exercise.

Mostly, my brain has been on the back burner (without a pilot light) for the past several days.  It's a luxury, I must admit, to do nothing.  But it is time to start doing something.

Finally, after four hours of therapy sewing tonight, the beginnings of a string quilt on the wall, for a nw baby. I throw them up as I finish them and will worry about placement when I have enough to play with. Trying to get rid of all he strips but of course, haven't made a dent.  Nonetheless, this mindless sewing has been just what I needed. It is a start.

This is the latest I have been up all week, and I think it is time to end my day. 

a winding career path

In a little while I will be on my way to Seneca, South Carolina.  Admittedly, I am geographically challenged when it comes to anything outside of the northeast of the country, but it's about a two hour drive from Atlanta. Don't ask me in what direction...but when tomorrow comes and I'm in the classroom, I'll be happy to be there.  Those of you who teach know what I mean.  This was the Strips and Squares class.
                                         working on the wall
                                       doing a little design feedback

I feel so lucky to be in this profession.  I've had many careers, all using the same underlying skills. I've been a writer (always) and a teacher/coach/consultant/counselor in a variety of industries and guises. Have loved them all (except for the boss from hell) but what I am doing now is the BEST!  

Started  life as a French teacher and later taught writing skills to executives, scientists, and other corporate types who wrote in long, convoluted sentences of pure gobbledygook. More or less, government speak -- you know the type.  I had a career as a corporate image consultant (though you wouldn't know it to look at me now - LOL) and communication skills coach - great fun!  Among my clients, Citibank, Chase Bank, and the Chicago Tribune. I spent two years a marketing consultant for law firms.  Finally, a decade doing one-on-one outplacement counseling, helping with interview skills, networking, resumes;and giving workshops to people who had been fired/downsized. 

When I discovered 15 years ago that life was too short, I left the outplacement business and worked at my art full time -- never thinking that I'd end up as an author and international teacher, having the most fun ever! It is such joy to help people unleash their creativity!  Just a few happy artists...
Life is an adventure and you never know where the path leads till you get there.  Mine has led to a very special place.

finally, time for a short post

With a few minutes to go till I get picked up from my hotel to go to the classroom, I am checking in.

Better late than never? Maybe.  LOL.  (omg, somebody's phone her just quacked like a duck).

I landed in Atlanta on Tuesday and my cousin Reba picked me up at the airport so I could stay with her for a few days and we could try to figure out how we are actually related.  Spent time with geneaology research and are still missing a link, but it has to be there somewhere. We'll get it eventually.  Or we won't.  Meanwhile, we had fun together. 

On Wednesday, I had lunch with some lovely and talented artists, including my old friend Barbara who moved from West Orange to Atlanta a number of years ago.  We were so happy to see each other!
Barbara photographs unusual signs and while she hasn't posted this one for fear of offending anybody, I have no such inhibitions.  I suspect this is responsible for our hysterics.
The last couple of weeks at home I started playing around with improv units, using neutrals and one color.  An experiment I don't have pictures of and hope to continue at some point when I am home near a sewing machine for a few days.    

Meantime, I am happy to be away from the weather in NJ that is 30 degrees with a freeze warning and snow flurries in some places. Here in Atlanta, it is pouring rain -- but at least it is not freezing cold. 

Oops - time to get ready for today's class.  More when I have a bit of time.

studio time:-))

Finally!!  It's been so long since I have been there that I had forgotten what chaos lives in the storage bins.  Lots of ideas going through my head, but unless I actually try them, I won't know what works.

Of course, before I can do anything, I have to sort.

The benefit of sorting is that you find things you had forgotten you had.  So this gave me the chance to look with fresh eyes at a few pieces of fabric I unearthed.  I found three of these butt-ugly nine patches
just in time to redo one and bring the other two originals to my upcoming UFO class.  What was I thinking??

On the other hand, I also came across some printed pieces I had forgotten about. Maybe I should think about doing something with them?  Quite a variety -- and this is the tip of the iceberg
This was deconstructed screen printing.
Clamped shibori.
Have no idea, but think this might have been soy wax batik that I then discharged and screeenprinted on.  It's a mystery to me.
Oh, yes. This was a demo piece from a class I did eons ago on screenprinting with freezer paper stencils and who knows what else.  

Another piece of shibori.
Maybe it will work with this fabric. Or not.  I really like this piece of cloth - screenprinted with thickened dyes using tape and then thermofax.  Since I never write down my process, I can never remember what I did.  But I see some discharge here.

It the meantime, I have my sorting/ironing/organizing work cut out for me.  And it's the best way for me to become inspired.  Today was a start.


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