I just emptied out my camera and found that I had taken a couple of pictures of the K.C. Plaza Art Fair that I was going to talk about. I don't remember what I was going to say other than I liked this year's banner (skyline of the plaza with a giant bird) and that the weather was beautiful and we had a great time.
I stuck to my pledge to spend as much on art as on food and got a couple of things. A promise to spend twice as much is not hard to fulfill. This may be only resolution I have ever kept.
Here is another picture of the fair and one of the many Kansas City fountains.
I went to pick up my piece from an exhibit at the 1109 Gallery Monday and was pleasantly surprised to find that it had sold. Here is what I had entered:
Fabric designer Barbara Brackman gave me the fabric for this quilt, so I mostly had time invested in it. The gallery workers gave me some good natured trouble about pricing my work too low. They pointed out that the gallery and I would both make more money if the prices were higher. I replied that the reason my work sells is that it IS priced low. One of the workers said that she had sold one of my pieces from the previous show to a homeless man. He had the $25 that it took to buy the piece, and it just fit in his backpack. Does my work help the decor of a space under the bridge? Or add just the right spot of color to the inside of a car? Funny to think about... or maybe a bit sad. Either way, it is a better fate than being stuffed in my closet.
Our younger daughter went to school on the east coast. Just as she was finishing up, my husband took a temporary job in Washington D.C.. Due to these traveling family members, I have made 3 million trips to the airport. Maybe just two million... but anyway, one diversion from the boredom inherent in making the same 50 mile trip over and over and over has been bird watching. (I do try to pay attention to traffic, though.)
Early on, I noticed that one tree seemed to be a favorite of the local turkey vultures. A half dozen or so could sometimes be seen sitting in one particular tree along the road. The vulture population seemed to increase every year, and after a while they took up residence on the top of a billboard at the top of a hill. There can be as many as twenty vultures on this sign at a time, and I suppose the mess they make up there is beyond belief. Last Fall they disappeared suddenly, and I was worried someone had cleared off the billboard with a shotgun. My older daughter reassured me that they had probably headed south where the roadkill was still unfrozen. She was right as usual, and they all reappeared in the Spring. Here is a picture of this year's bunch before they head out:
I've read that vultures have just fuzz, or no feathers on their heads because the stuff they eat would be hard to get off feathers, and too gross to be something they'd want to wear for very long. Also, I have learned that they like to sterilize their other feathers by sitting in the sun with their wings spread. They do seem to do that a lot while perched on the sign. Featherless heads do not make for an attractive bird, so I prefer to imagine them with hats. Really, wouldn't they look good in those hunter hats with the flaps? Or party hats. Someone photoshop pointy party hats on these guys, and just see what difference that would make!
Back in July I made two quilts about the BP gulf coast oil spill. I was inspired by Jimmy Fallon's inappropriate song about the mess. Originally I planned on making three "Tar Ball" quilts, but I stalled out before the "Gulf Coast Plant Life" quilt got made. So, here are "Gulf Coast Birds" and "Gulf Coast Fish".
I thought they would look good hanging side by side... Tar balls going down and then up. Or maybe the birds above the fish, with the tar balls trickling down...
A group that calls itself The Seamsters started collecting blocks for a "Flaming Furniture" quilt back in the 80s. There had been a local furniture store fire that inspired the quilt, I think. Anyway time flies and now, years later, there is a new push to get the quilt finished. I was on the mail list for additional block requests, so I decided to make some furniture burn. I call this block Flaming Fifties. It features a chair by Eames and a mobile by Calder.
But you really need to see the other blocks to get the real feel of the project!
A while back, or lets see... Several years ago... Maybe more than a few years ago, I took a workshop on a "fast and easy" way to make Flying Geese blocks. The method involved cutting squares and rectangles, sewing and flipping... but not the way you would think. At the end, you suddenly had a stack of geese blocks. I cut out a lot of pieces and sewed a few blocks, then went home and forgot the whole thing. Last year I came across the blocks and decided to sew the few geese blocks I had completed to the remaining pre-geese pieces. The leftovers from this quilt
were on top of the pile, so I added them into the mix. These new, larger blocks with a first border were set aside for another year. Finally, this summer I added a final lets-finish-up-this-fish-fabric border and called it done. A quilt mash-up of two old projects... the best name suggested for this quilt so far is "Sleeping with the Fishes".
This is a simple quilt that I made for my younger daughter. It includes fabrics that we also used in some curtains for her big city apartment. She is moving soon, though, so who knows if those curtains will be in use at the next place? Too bad I didn't get it done sooner...although the current apartment is so warm, the last thing she needed was a quilt! Maybe the next place will be more drafty.
This is what my trading cards for this month looked like:
The theme was Brown, and I had a bit of trouble coming up with any inspiration. So, I made Brown Everything Bagels. They have french knots and an assortment of beads...but still rather boring. Yawn. I think they need more of everything.
Check out this video I was sent via the blog Door Sixteen: We had a rabbit for quite a while back when the kids were little. I was always surprised that she liked to hop up on the sofa and then up onto the window sill to stretch out and take naps. I guess it figures that the parrots we have now like to burrow under furniture and hide in the smallest, darkest places they can get into. Just the opposite I would expect from both creatures.
Ever wish you could get inside someone else's head? I do. Generally it is my husband's head... I just think it might be a huge help to be able to see the world through your spouse's eyes. Maybe it would lead to world peace and harmony. Maybe not. Anyway, here is another creature that I wish I could do a Star Trek mind-meld with..Bower Birds.
Male Bower Birds build fantastic sculptural nests and decorate them with carefully arranged displays of flowers or rocks or shells or bottle caps. Whatever is available and potentially beautiful. Some of these birds even mash up berries and paint the insides of their creations. All to attract the ladies. The best nest gets the most ladies. Then these girls go off to build un-fabulous serviceable nests and raise the babies by themselves. I'm not sure if their priorities are quite right, but it works for them. Thanks to You-Tube and the internet, I can watch these birds and see their work. It makes me wish I had gone into Bower Bird studies when I was in school! Seriously, what are these creatures thinking?
Ok, it is probably just sleeping... But look at the size of this thing! This photo popped up on Craftzine.com this morning, and even they don't know who made it. Gosh, the things that come up on the internet.
This weekend is the last weekend to see the "Discovering the Wetlands" exhibit at the Lawrence Percolator. There is a wide assortment of artwork in this exhibit, from photographs to 3D recycled representations of wetland plants. I entered this piece, which I call Shuttered View of the Wetlands:
Quite a while back, I was invited to be part of a quilt exhibit that has one quilt for each holiday celebrated in the USA. I was assigned Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year. Rosh Hashanah translates literally as "head of the year". Sources claim that Rosh Hashanah as the day the world was created, others say it is the day that man was created. Unlike the wild celebration that the secular New Year's Day brings, it is a day of repentance and introspection. The ram's horn, or Shofar, is blown to alert followers that they are being judged and that their fate for the upcoming year is being inscribed in the book of life. Traditional foods eated on Rosh Hashanah are apples dipped in honey to symbolize a sweet new year.
This exhibit will start in Longmont Colorado early next year and then hopefully travel around for a bit. An additional exciting thing for this exhibit is that C&T publishing is planning on doing a book about it! So, pretty cool...
Here is my textile representation of Rosh Hashanah:
Today is my birthday. I am a Cancer/Leo Cuspian. Among other things, the internet says that " often fascinated by their own
brilliance and eloquence, Cancer/Leo cuspians may become
self-hypnotized to the point where they consider themselves to be
masters or mistresses of right or wrong. " That sounds about right.
This is a small quilt I made this Spring that I am calling Bachelor Buttons. It gave me a good place to use some fun ric rack. (Actually, the ric rack helps to disguise the fact that I didn't get the flowers centered very well on their blocks.) First I glued the ric rack where I wanted it, then I held all those points down with french knots. Someday, I'd like to add another leaf to this pattern, do the flowers in just light and dark pinks and see if it would pass for thistles....