Sunday, October 31, 2010

standing at the intersection of art and politics

I try to keep my art and my politics separated

and I definitely don't talk about my politics on my art blog

but in this particular case the two have intersected

this piece of art work is titled "Coexist"

it is entirely fabric, using a number of techniques

I created it for a project called The Dream Rocket where a replica of a Saturn V rocket will be covered with 24x24 inch panels all created by folks all over the country

the instruction was to create a panel that represents your dream of the future

all those little "paper doll" shaped figures on my piece are all different colors to represent every race, and the embroidered symbols are for male, female, handicapped, Islam, Buddhist, Agnostic, Jewish, Pagan, Christian, Hindu, Confucian and Shinto

the quilting over the surface consists of one word "COEXIST"

politics of late has been really, REALLY, ugly

so much hate, so many lies, so little being done to actually make things better -- I just wish we would learn to coexist

and this week we all get a chance once again to have our say in what happens in our country

are we going to just keep on screaming at each other

calling each other names

threatening each other and even hurting each other

how did we get to this place?

I went already and voted as we have early voting here

I strongly urge you to vote too

cast a vote to take us to where we can coexist!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

F a a a l l l l l i n g

just like the leaves

the money arrived in my PayPal account yesterday afternoon

this morning I spent it

I signed up for the Visioning Conference with SAQA in May


remember that mountain I was talking about standing on the edge of?

I jumped! (with the help of a healthy push)

I'm doing a happy dance here while we're in the free fall

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Baby Steps

and just where will those baby steps down the path and out the gate take me?

well, let us begin by saying THANK YOU a hundred times over (or more) to my sister for her offer to help with the cost of the conference in the spring -- it is so amazing (once again) to have her do this for me

(so am I holding up my end of this deal? I'm not sure, but I try by doing what I can for other people -- and this could be a whole (LONG) post on it's own)

right after I wrote the post about the conference I also had a lengthy phone conversation with a friend in California

she has a BA in fine art and was for many years a certified teacher (she's quit renewing her license now -- she's 80 -- no more high school class rooms for her!!)

so she's teaching a group of her daughter's co-workers about art -- a little informal group of ladies that get together about once a month

I'm now "signed up" to do this class by correspondence -- during our conversation she told me what this month's assignments are as well as what they did in class

I'll be doing the work and mailing it to her, then we'll talk some more

so, I'm thinking at some point this photo may become the starting point for a small quilted piece (which will probably then get donated some where)

meantime, I've been wrestling with two opposing points of view -- can I be happy doing only a few pieces every year and continue to do them entirely by hand, or do I want to do more pieces which will mean that at least some of the work will need to be done on the machine?

or do I truly have to do only one or the other? probably this will end up being one from column A and two from column B (and with six we get egg roll?)

one of the other things I've been struggling with on the SAQA University is the whole "WIKI" thing -- I've never used one, so I'm a little hesitant about it -- but I had a conversation with my daughter in the last couple of days and I'm feeling better about it -- she had used it for a project at work and her comment was "mom, you figured out Blogger and FaceBook, you can do Wiki!"-- so I'll be jumping in to that too

and I've decided that it's time to stop being in "lurk" mode on the email list for SAQA -- if I'm going to get the answers to my specific questions, I have to ASK them (who knew?!)

look out! here I come!!

Monday, October 18, 2010

Not All Who Wander Are Lost

yes, I know -- it's a bumper sticker -- and it ought to be on the back of my car

this was a tumultuous summer -- the quilt I thought would be a winner at the State Fair didn't even make the final cut, while the quilt I sent off on a whim thinking there was no way a first time entrant would ever get in made it to the Hoffman Challenge National Traveling Show

over my life time I've been very, very good at starting things that require a lot of concentrated effort, but not so good at finishing them -- college for example, and the program for being a master weaver, and....and... -- you get my point

part of the issue is that I want to run before I can crawl -- I don't have a lot of patience for sitting through a class when I've already covered/learned the material somewhere else just to get the credit hours

( I taught myself to play the piano -- and to play Moonlight Sonata just by playing it over and over and over)

I also have this need to be patted on the head frequently by someone other than family -- I like being told my stuff is good -- and only more recently have I been receptive to hearing constructive critique of what I'm doing

last spring I joined the Studio Art Quilt Association -- I had seen the work of some of their members and it felt like the kind of work that I was headed toward

they have a truly awesome website that includes PDF files of every newsletter/journal they have ever printed (which I'm slowly reading my way through) and an area called The University which I am trying to figure out

they have two levels of memberships -- the artist member (pay your dues and join) and the professional artist member (PAM - where you are juried in) -- I like this idea, and I especially like the part where it talks about how to determine if you are PAM material -- I think I am, but I find I have no idea how to get to the suggested guidelines for qualifying

and there is the Visioning Project -- which is literally a mentoring program which you can sign up for and they will help you get where you want to go

I want to sign up for the Visioning Project -- and I'm afraid to sign up for it -- I don't want to fail again and I fear that although I've done some of the preparatory work that I'm actually going to be in way over my head and it would be good if that mentor was actually someone right here within visiting reach but I doubt if it will be

oh yes, and next May, right here in the state I live in, there will be a 3 day conference that is open to all SAQA members that might help get me started -- $300 -- it might well be the only such conference I can reasonably expect to ever attend since it is right here and I won't have to have a hotel or large travel expenses

so I'm standing on that edge of the mountain thinking "don't look down, don't look down", but not quite ready to leap (and thinking about trying to raise that $300!!!)

Thursday, October 07, 2010

and another thing

back in January the insurance company made the DH change what sort of meter he has to use to test his sugar levels (my rant about that is here)

at the time I was really mad that we not only had to change from a piece of equipment that was working wonderfully, but that (unlike previous meters) we had to pay a $9 copay for it

last week that new meter, purchased in January of THIS YEAR, quit working

we made the trip to get new batteries only to discover that we could buy him an entire new meter -- without a prescription or anything else -- for (you guessed it) $9!!!

obviously we decided to just do that, but it still annoys me plenty

just sayin'