Tuesday, January 30, 2007

studio day 2

This was a nonstop day, from the time I left at 7:40 this morning, stopped at Dunkin' Donuts to pick up a cup of coffee for my daughter, applauded Josh in the 2nd grade's annual performance, did 20 errands, grabbed lunch, packed the car, schlepped stuff upstairs, arranged the shelves, printed a piece of fabric (yay), went to the hospital to check on my mother, and got home, I could NOT move. We went around the corner to the Japanese restaurant and a meal of soba noodle soup. Heavenly comfort food, of which I did not take a picture. My legs (and heart) are getting a workout and I suppose by the time I am finished dragging bags and crates and tables and chairs and you-name-it, up a very steep flight of stairs(the ceilings in this industrial building are 14') I will be either dead or in great shape. Or both.

Can I tell you what an effort it is to be neat? I think this is a big part of my exhaustion. Ms. Closet, I don't know how you do it. Anyway, this is how I left the place today. The shelves are partly stocked with paints, fabrics, and miscellany. I brought in the round bridge table and a portable printing surface (now doubling as a drying rack) so I could at least do SOMETHING till my big tables get here. Now it probably won't be till over the weekend. Meantime, here is my little bit of printed cloth, drying on the temporary print surface/design wall. I won't get to HD for the pink foam board till later this week - or even next wk. I'll make do.

Thanks for all your comments yesterday. Like LizzieB, I know how much it means to have comments on my blog.

Anonymous, thanks for your psychic info. I still can't find it but I can remember plunking it down on a horizontal surface.

Martha - I have stopped looking for now. In the meantime, it is probably with the hammer a neighbor borrowed in 1968 from my ex-h and me. Maybe your keys and glasses are there, too. Gerrie, I did buy a new CF card today - so does that guarantee I'll find the other one? I'm not opening the new one yet...I did reformat my 256k one and am using that for the moment. U are undoubtedly right - I won't find the old one till I use the new one. Bah. LizzieB - you're experiencing the outside studio thing now, you lucky woman! I've been reading and reading and getting greener and greener.

Linda - but you're in Western Ave. Studios with all that activity! I will keep you posted on Lowell dates.

Judy & Karoda - I am not a red person but this was absolutely a physical need. Crazy, huh? The menu at that place is to die for -- I plan to work my way through it this winter. Everybody - thanks for the wishes about my mother. Spoke to the doctor tonight - and the saga continues. We all get there sooner or later.

Past my bedtime. I don't have any early appointments tomorrow, so hopefully, I can sleep in a bit.

Monday, January 29, 2007

Studio day

Ok, I admit it. I am losing it. No, really. Tonight, I took my CF card out of my camera and instead of putting it directly into the card reader, plunked it down somewhere while en route to some distraction. By the time I looked for it, five minutes later, it had vanished. I cannot remember where I put it - it is nowhere to be seen, and I am beyond distraught. a 1 gig card I recently bought, loaded with pictures. Just put me away.

It was one of those days. On the upside, I spent most of the day at Studio 1 painting the ugly, filthy, gray industrial shelving that Mona had gifted to me. By the time I left at 5:00, it looked pretty good if you didn't get too close. Red for energy! Next to it, the requisite electric teapot, a tin of tea, a budding avocado, some fresh-ground Italian roast coffee, my mug and Melitta filter thingie. Power strip. I am leaving an old pair of birks there so I can wear whatever the weather dictates and then change into my natural habitat. Cannot work with shoes on. Today, I painted barefoot. Tomorrow, if I get there, I can move some stuff onto the (presumably) dry shelves. Here are some other pix of the space, which happily, I uploaded before I lost the damn card.

Above, Rita's side of the studio. Notice that she has already started being productive. She put this up and started painting the ground for something. She works in pastels and also in oils that clean up with water. I use those for printmaking - they're great.

Here are our French doors, which we love. I thought the sun coming through the windows in late afternoon cast a nice pattern on what will be my design wall.

The other positive to the day was that I discovered a fabulous Caribbean luncheonette/health food store (huh?) around the corner. I had a meat pattty and the most delicious, spicy, curried fish soup for lunch. I expect to work my way through the menu and possibly bribe them for some recipes.

  • On the downside - I had to interrupt my painting to run up to the hospital to deal with my mother's vicissitudes. When the nurse saw my red-paint-splattered hands, she gasped and pointed, horrified and speechless. I ultimately got back to work, but had more involvement with my mother & the doctor tonight - and the rest of the week doesn't augur well in this department. I am going to bed in preparation for an early start tomorrow: my 7 year old grandson Josh has one line in a school play, so you know where I will be at 9:am. Meantime, I hope to see this image in my dreams tonight.

Sunday, January 28, 2007


Marty and I spent the day schlepping whatever we could carry, over to the studio and up the very long flight of stairs to the second floor. More of same tomorrow - but by myself. So, I guess I'll be getting my cardio workout. Tonight, I vowed to get this room into some kind of order. "You only live once, but if you do it right, it's enough." I found this fortune as I was combing through the piles of paper and fabric. Made me smile. I threw away mucho stuffo and shoved anything I couldn't decide what to with, into a drawer. Do you know that trick? if you don't see it, it doesn't exist. Since I am taking my two 6' tables to the studio, I brought the 5' one downstairs so I could print at home (hey - it's winter and if it is snowing, forget going out.) So this little bitty, totally inadequate 30"x24" tablette is all that's left for cutting fabric upstairs. Well, at least you can walk from one side of the room to the other. The overflowing bins to the left will soon be organized; I have 8 more of them being delivered from Staples tomorrow. I actually took a lot of fabric off the wall, but here are two pieces I put up, for a change of scene. The one on the left was a demo piece at my last workshop. With that, I am done for tonight.

Friday, January 26, 2007

lease signed, keys in hand

Keep in mind that it will never look like this again. My half is on the left and by the end of next week, there will be STUFF.I am laughing because Susie Monday told me I was one of the inspirations for her post on messiness. What an honor. Rita (my studio mate) gets the two windows on her side, but I get more wall space. Plenty of light for everyone, though, since there is no wall dividing her side from mine. It is a sunny, southern exposure and happily, our walls don't go all the way up - so the light comes in from the window in the corridor (left), the other studio (other side of right wall) and from the French Doors (behind where I am standing to take the picture) that face a couple of north windows in the hallway. The one flaw is that there is no hot water. The utility sink has only cold, which could pose a slight problem washing out screens. But I'll buy an electric kettle so I can pour hot water over them if I need to. I think I'll take the rest of the afternoon off to eat bonbons and read mysteries. Will post pictures as the studio morphs.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

honestly, I am too tired to blog

Anyway, today was boring. I was in the house all day but finally went out tonight, when it was 13 degrees, to go to a critique meeting of the art group (not fiber) I belong to. Everybody's got the same issues about selling their work and reaching an audience; people have solo shows and nothing sells, etc. etc. It ain't just us. Stopped at Whole Foods on the way home to stock up on Brie, goat cheese, crackers, kalamata olives, meyer lemons, nonfat yogurt, pressed fig & almond stuff,and shortbread. What kind of weird shopping basket was that? When I got home, there were two messages urging me to eat on the South Beach Diet, one e-mail from Weight Watchers inviting me to a meeting, something from Rachel Ray, junk mail from the Wine Spectator, and something from Cooking Light. Do you think somebody is trying to tell me something?? Enough - I am going to fall into bed. Tomorrow morning, I will finally get to the new studio to see what it looks like with the walls up. I'll post pix.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Ms. Closet! where are you???

You haven't heard from me lately because I have been knee-deep in garbage. Have filled 4 or 5 of those big, black trash bags from my lower-level studio, as I neaten it and fill moving cartons with paints, screens, and etching press. It is bearable now, although far from finished. I'm waiting for Staples to deliver some stackable crates and casters (Thursday) so I can sort out more STUFF and get it organized. In the meantime, I was planning on doing the same with my upstairs studio. However, it is too horrible to contemplate, even for me. And I can't possibly start till I re-read this book, to which I have alluded before on this blog. Clear my clutter is what I am attempting to do. I am trying to figure out why it is so difficult for me to throw things away - but I should stop thinking and start throwing. Not tonight. In fact, I believe this is even too big a job for Ms. Closet to tackle. She would turn and run if she were in this space. Fortunately for her, she is otherwise occupied this week. I have to do it alone.

Meantime, LizzieB has been productive and having a wonderful time, and I am intensely green. I have not been near my design wall - but fortunately, I had a chance to print some fabric as a demo when I was in Santa Barbara. I am finally unpacking the carton I shipped home and it was fun to take a fresh look at this screenprinted cloth. Here is part of it.

And tomorrow, I may just stop by and check out the new space. Or maybe I should stay here and pack up the old space...

Saturday, January 20, 2007

I've been tagged

by BadMomGoodMom and I have to write five things about myself I haven't mentioned before on this blog. Then I am supposed to tag five other people but I'm not going to. However, if you are dying to be tagged, let me know and I'll be happy to oblige. Until then, I have to think pretty hard to find five things worth mentioning. 1. In high school, I flunked the spatial relations part of the aptitude test we took to determine our abilities. This has not changed: I still cannot put a cardboard box together and have trouble figuring out which tabs on the fedex mailing tube get closed first. Get it wrong every time. 2. On the Kuder Preference Test for careers, the results said I should be a psychologist or social worker. I thought it would be interesting to be an archeologist. My first career was as a French teacher. I have also had the following careers: Copywriter; Promotion Director for a computer trade magazine; Image Consultant/Personal Shopper; Executive Coach & Communication Skills Trainer; Career Transition Counselor; Marketing Consultant for Attorneys. I've left out a few things, but that's the gist of it.

3. I have had a standing order for a Hindu meal on Continental Airlines for more years than I can count, but until last week, they never actually served me one because "snack" doesn't qualify. On my California flights last week I had two yummy Indian food meals, including one breakfast. I was shocked, because I had forgotten about it.

4. In 1963 my ex-husband and I were in Paris and we met James Baldwin walking along one of the quais. We got his autograph on a flimsy piece of paper - maybe it was a napkin. I could have sworn I had it, but it has disappeared.

5. You don't want to know this one

Thursday, January 18, 2007

more ART in L.A.

This is part of the garden at the Norton Simon Museum in Pasadena. Two days of art in a row! Norton Simon's personal art collection is amazing and comprehensive. I especially enjoyed the late 19th -21st c. If you go to their website and browse by artist, you'll see some of the pieces I could have grabbed and run home with: Degas & Diebenkorn, for starters. The place was full of sculpture - Degas, Rodin, Noguchi, Barbara Hepworth, Giacometti. But by yesterday I was too tired and grouchy from the cold to take pictures. I must say, there were a bunch of sophmoric men in business suits who were taking turns photographing each other with a statue of a nude woman.

I am now home and glad to be here. Finally, I can catch up on e-mail.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Rothko and the Blue Whale

I promise, I'll get to the Rothko part. Eventually. But first, this building. The Blue Whale.

The official name of this building is the Pacific Design Center (similar to the D&D Building in NYC but much more gorgeous. The people of L.A. refer to it as the Blue Whale (although there is now a green part) because when it was built, they hated it. Here is a picture of the interior when you first walk in. To-die-f0r furniture and everything else you might want for your house (in your next life).

Here, in one of the windows of a ritzy design store is a carpet that I thought had wonderful graphics. Couldn't resist the picture - although the color is undoubtedly off.

A branch of the L.A. MOCA (Museum of Contemporary Art) is adjacent to the Blue/Green Whale, so we walked over there to see the eight Rothkos. My cousin Nancy (with whom I am staying in L.A.) is taking an art course where they go to different museums and galleries every week and the professor talks about the art. I'm not sure what he said because I was too busy trying to look at the art and block out his loud voice so I could communicate directly with the work. He was yakking about how depressed Rothko was (he eventually took his own life) and that the work reflects this. Blah blah blah. The first guard said I could take pictures without flash; her replacement almost arrested me when I took a picture. On the other hand, there were no ropes or alarms and you could practically get your nose up to the canvas. That was great.

I haven't seen a lot of Rothko's work in person: certainly not eight pieces in one small place. What a difference it made, seeing them together and having the time to get very close. If only that professor would have stopped talking.

This was one of Rothko's earlier pieces - before he started exploring color fields. Do I have to tell you that it is one of my favorites? You can see what you want to see in this somewhat abstract piece that still has enough of a figurative feeling to it to be open to interpretation. It was hung on the same wall with this next piece, which is one of his early color fields - much lighter in feeling than his later ones, and in a palette I haven't associated with him.
No more time to blog - I'll upload this and check in later with the rest.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

When I wasn't sightseeing

I was having a great time with the Coastal Quilters in Santa Barbara. One of the people in the class said I should amend my description to include the words "fun" and "play." I thought I had already done that, but I'll check - LOL. You can find a good description from Inga, who drove up from San Clemente to take the worksho -- and pix of her work from the class on http://www.tantalizingtextiles.blogspot.com/. The first day, we printed. I asked some of the participants to hold up their favorite piece of fabric from that day. Here are a few more of them.

The second day, we did Jump-Starting the Art Quilt and used some phrases as jumping-off points for pieces. It was fun to see the results, a few of are below.




So, now I'm in for a few days of rest and time with family in Los Angeles. Will be back.

Hello from L.A.

Finally - time to catch up on the last few days in freezing cold Santa Barbara. My cousin has the heat on, so it's bearable in L.A. - and I'm sitting here with a hot cup of tea, feeling happy, indeed. Santa Barbara is a pretty town, and Angela Moll showed me around the day before the workshop started. The picture above is the Presidio, which has been completely rebuilt with authentic materials, based on archeological records. The interior is a charming chapel - simple and colorful. Of course, as we walked around, I couldn't resist the texture on this cane ceiling or this wall.

After the workshop was over, the second day, Lora Martin and I went down to the wharf for drinks to celebrate what a successful two days it had been. Looked like summer/felt like winter. But beautiful,anyway.

Next post, the workshop results.

Thursday, January 11, 2007

no Internet connection

The person I am staying with has only AOL dial-up and I can't get on through AOL, so I am at the moment in an Internet café with Angela Moll, with whom I have just had lunch. She needs to get back home so I'm just poking my head into the Internet, downloading my mail, saying "hi" here and probably won't have any more Internet till I get to L.A. on Sunday.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

California bound

Crack of dawn tomorrow - off to the airport. I should take the book "Clear Your Clutter with Feng Shui" with me, but it just doesn't seem like the kind of book you can't put down on an airplane. Maybe if I am lucky, I can sleep. If I survive the harrowing 405 to the 101 from the airport to Santa Barbara, I'll be back with photos. Southern CA was never my favorite place to drive - and you have to exit from one highway to the other on the LEFT. The LEFT?? Aarrgh. Wish me a safe trip. I know I am forgetting something...

Monday, January 08, 2007


Yes. Do not ask me what I did all day today, aside from getting my studio sale blog up and running, finally. Off the Design Wall. Oh, laundry. Four $1 bills came out beautifully clean. And I am in the middle of dumping my purse and throwing away most of what is in there so I can make room for the next load of trash. Partial inventory:
  • 3 half sticks of fossilized gum from the last flight
  • gas station receipts I can no longer read
  • toothpicks from restaurants, still in wrappers
  • many coins
  • a metal tape measure
  • an empty peanut bag from the last flight
  • crumbs
  • a check ripped into confetti
  • a minature plastic ice cream taster spoon

You get the idea. Anybody care to outdo me?


I have taken down my studio sale blog because the NEW Blogger is so annoying that I can't deal with it. I will have to figure out another way and will let you know. They may say they are out of beta, but I don't think so! Off to take down my show and do errands in the rain.

Sunday, January 07, 2007

Today's visit to Studio 1 and another picture of the complex. I took Marty over to see the space and finally decided where the French doors will go. I moved them over slightly we won't walk into a pillar when we enter the studio. I wish they had not asked me, but had just done it. Then if the door were in the wrong place, it wouldn't have been MY fault. Leaving for California in a few days. And tomorrow, I have to take my solo show down. IN THE RAIN. Sigh...

Saturday, January 06, 2007

speaking of Sean Scully

I am so relieved that I already own his book, "The Color of Time." I almost fainted when I saw the price on Amazon for this out-of-print book. Good grief! On that note, I ordered "Wall of Light" after having seen the remarkable exhibit of his work last weekend at the Met in NY. Yes, the weather has been crazy. Our friends in Colorado and Kansas are getting zapped - and here in NJ, we had 70 degrees today. Little green daffodil shoots are poking through the dirt -- my goodness! It felt lovely to have the door open and the sun roof back and be in our shirtsleeves today. Too good to be true, and I suppose we should brace ourselves for a change. But I'm going to Southern CA on Wed, so maybe I can eke out another week of good weather. I was going to iron fabric tonight, but I've been up since 6:am and think I'll defer this activity till tomorrow.

Friday, January 05, 2007

later on Friday

Today was a remarkably good and productive day! 1. My oncologist says I'm doing great -- so, another year down. 2. I actually got a lot of work done while I was waiting for him, which I finished this afternon. 3. I went over to Studio 1 (that's what I call my new studio because it's the one closest to the entrance) to decide whether I wanted French doors or a wood door, and where I wanted it placed. Aarrgh. Yes, French doors because they let in more light and I don't care about privacy. This studio, for me, is about COMMUNITY and warmth and sunlight and whatever else comes along (the other two studios are putting wood doors on). French doors take up more wall space, but it's only a 30" difference and worth it to me and to my studio mate, Rita, with whom I consulted by phone. The walls go up on Monday and the space will be ready Feb 1st. When I left and turned the car around in the parking lot I had to take these photos of a building I missed the last time. Isn't it beautiful?

close-up of the sheet metal

close-up of the door Sean Scully would appreciate this building and I am enraptured by it.

unseasonably warm

It's going to be in the 60's today in New Jersey -- and the small drizzle doesn't dampen the pleasure of warm weather in January. Short term good/long term bad - and I suppose we'll get zonked when winter finally hits us -- but for now, nice. While I was in the process of making some new postcards of my own, yesterday, I received this in the e-mail from Vivika DeNegre, who makes beautiful cards. She's making one a week; I wish I could be that ambitious. She made this one with a combination of fabric she had printed in the workshop she took with me, and some fabric I had printed and handed out. It made me smile, so I wanted to share it with you. This morning I am off to the doctor for my six-year checkup. It's always a little nerve-wracking, but I am taking a deep breath. Then, for most of the rest of the day -- paperwork, and maybe if I manage my time well, some creative stuff. Cheers!

Thursday, January 04, 2007

another blog???

Yep. I've joined the ranks of artists who have a blog with work for sale. And it's a good excuse to try out the new blogger without migrating this one yet. So, check it out and I'll remind you every time I post pieces on SALE -- which many of them will be. Studio clearance will be ongoing till I'm settled in my new studio space. Can't take it with me...so you reap the benefits.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

little by little

I am getting something done. Tonight, I finally stitched a piece that has been sitting on my chair in the studio for several weeks. This was one I had printed on a gelatin plate and then overprinted. The picture isn't great, but there it is. It is attached to canvas and the contrast is much stronger in actuality between the background and foreground. My crit group is coming tomorrow, so I had to have something to show, didn't I? It has been a long time since I have had work to show. On that note, I shall go get my beauty sleep.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

I'd rather have root canal

Yes, there are worse things. We're halfway through the root canal thing- first session of two; the second one will wait a couple of weeks. In the meantime, I wanted to post just a couple of other pictures from our NY weekend before I get back to packing supplies for teaching. One of the things I love so much about the city is the preponderance of street vendors. street food can be great - and although we didn't have any this time, I couldn't resist this shot near Times Square on Saturday night. Just one more: the rest didn't come out for some reason. At this point, the cops had not yet blocked off these streets. I never get tired of the energy and the lights! Back to work. I'll check in later.

Monday, January 01, 2007

Happy 2007

Hey! Happy New Year! I started the weekend with good intentions, taking this shot from the car on our way into the city. I love the gritty industrial landscape juxtaposed with the NY skyline in the distance. See the Empire State Building?But then I kind of lost track and forgot to take many pictures. Par for the course. Our decadent weekend in NY included luxury accomodations in our friends' magazine photo-worthy apartment, last minute tickets Sat. night for The Apple Tree, an afternoon at the Metropolitan Museum, major eating, and lots of walking. The weather was warm and sunny till this morning, when we awoke to a drizzle. It was okay, we were leaving the city anyway. The non-stop eating included the famous Stage Delicatessen, where I really should have taken pictures of our sandwiches. This is typical, however. Has to be deconstructed to be eaten!Then, of course, there was dessert. Four of us could not finish this one piece of cheesecake. Why did we even try?? Sunday breakfast at this wonderful place on 1st Ave., where the hot bagels are GENUINE, not donut-shaped white bread -- and where the man at the next table eavesdropped on our animated conversation until he could no longer restrain himself.He finally joined in and gave us his gratuitous advice on the problem we were discussing. LOL - only in New York!! Welll, Blogger has decided not to let me upload any more photos tonight, so I'll have to continue tomorrow after I get home from the potential root canal scenario. Happy New Year to everyone.

soup weather in June and a little more

DISCLAIMER: Blogger is giving me grief tonight, which you will see by the varying sizes of the type. Ye p, soup weather and it's ...