Alaska is amazing .I’m sitting in a coffee shop looking over Homer split .There are bald eagles flying over head and about 70 sea otters drifting around in the bay.We have had a great time in our RV a few adventures.The landscape is breath taking and I’m told we’ll be back ! We seen glaciers. wildlife and been waved at by humpback whales.Watched the sun go down at 11.15 pm and not seen darkness for 10 days.
So I have a swap partner called Nora her avatar is a unicorn.
We both love to make things for each other.Sounds strange we’re never met and only connect through the pieces were make.After a really long break from swapping her package arrived on Saturday.We both have a passion for steampunk a true extension of Sci Fi if there ever was one.
These are the cool pieces she sent.The balloon compact is so fun-have discovered I can alter it a bit more.Might have to get my corset out and have some dress up time.
So we grabbed a bite to eat-messy tacos so required a restroom trip.Now I have to confess there were posters up for the Black Arts festival and I had flippantly suggested there was a Harry Potter thing on but I was so wrong.
I deviated through the festival on my return from the restroom but was distracted by a craft table full of supplies.A delightful presence greeted me.”We’re making dolls” standing the other side of the table to me was Marita Dingus.This woman is an icon to me.
I first encountered her work in my early days as a docent at SAM but our connection goes back way before that.As my graduate piece essay in 1989 I elected to write an essay on the emergence of HIV.Those were very early days and we considered it would develop into a pandemic.
Run forward 2010 and I see Marita’s piece in SAM.She had used textile dolls to highlight the issues of HIV and sexuality.
So here’s my icon offering to make a doll with me.So here she is sat on my bench with my crew.She has a cloud on her forehead jointly reflecting “the cloud” Yes, it’s yellow for obvious reasons.She is green and white ( yes I can say that).She is a child of the world as yet unnamed.OK let’s just call her Jules.
Where to start this weekend saw the Queen’s 90th birthday and we had good friends involved in celebrations in London ( well done Mr and Mrs P) Frank Williams received an OBE for services to motor sports and Mr Bottas brought the car home with support from an awesome team.
Meanwhile in Seattle we were having a regular Saturday.Popped in EMP to see the Star Trek exhibit.Yes I have always indulged in Sci Fi. Was doing fine until I can across Dominic Cumberbatch’s Khan costume.Came over all unnecessary and had to get the camera out.Had to find some refreshment so headed to the Armory.
Facebook ( yes you can find me there) gently reminded me this morning that it’s 4 years since I installed UP at the University of Washington.Four years seems so short a period of time but the motivation for this piece is really stronger than ever.Children all over the world face abuse,the plight of being refugees and hunger.These are the facts of our small planet.
I always hoped ,and still do,that participatory learning and exploring of the articles to make a physical piece of art would help groups explore how they could meet the articles in the rights convention.It’s not new news but is something we all take to any setting where we find ourselves interacting with children.
I also like to re purpose fabrics during construction adding another layer to the piece.The eye’s are a special skill which I’m always happy to share.
My Mum in particular loves being in the mountains.We share a passion for plants this visit gave a chance to share the mountains first flush of flowers.Just like ducks I forget from one year to the next the flower types and have to relearn some of their names.
We had a couple for day trips into the mountains.The flowers were stunning.Such a contrast from our first trip to the trip two weeks later.Many more flowers as the quick thaw continues with our current high temperatures.So I’m going to share some some of our alpine treasures.If you ever get the opportunity to visit Rainier Nation Park I recommend Stevens Canyon Road and Reflection Lake as awesome destinations.The meadows around Paradise are always worth a visit once the snow has melted !
These are not mountain meadows but my neighbors beautiful single peony which greeted my Mum when she arrived.You can see on the left just how high we are on the hilltop.
I want to put more image but have as ever there have been having technical issues-one of these day I’ll learn to do this properly.
So way back in the day like 2009 I joined an online community called Cut ,Out and Keep.For a couple of years I have reduced my involvement but recently swapping has started to be an activity that I’d like to become involved in again.
Nora and I swapped way back in the day and this week I have sent her some new Steampunk creations.This is one of the ATC’s which formed part of that swap and I’m hoping to make more of these wee pieces of art.In a couple of weeks I’m heading off to Alaska and planning to ATC bomb my way around Denali and the Kenai penisular. I’ll take some ATC’s from my stash and create a limited edition set for the trip.I’ll be preparing mini journals ahead of the trip might just share those to.
With my Mum’s arrival in the studio she returned a piece she had started last year.
I have a small 6×4 beaded piece which sits in my studio- which I mention in a precious post regarding Zentangles. It was easy to grant her request for a piece of fabric and accessed some of the many beads she has donated to my space and let her have a go.Her hand stitching is currently better than mine but her eye-sight means she can only work in small batches.
In the last couple of weeks we have learnt that one of my husband’s photographic mentors has passed.We like to think he took the iconic pictures of Steve in front of the combine harvester on his Pallouse workshop with Art Wolfe.Steve has become the unpaid poster child for this course it appears regularly in photographic magazines.We all love this image but Steve learnt the magic phrase.”Good image but what does it mean ? ”
The description of this piece from Mum was that” this Deb in the heart of the Rockies with all the layers of the mountains around her”.Once we established that I’m in the heart of the cascades with a bit of a giggle we settle on this interpretation. This piece has returned back to England with her in a small purse I made for her.
An arty friend gave me a heads up to this little treasure just at the bottom of the runaway of Boeing field. Georgetown steam plant provided power for Seattle’s early tram system.This area is not always great at retaining old historical buildings but this one has found a place in the hearts of engineers and believe it or not filmmakers.It’s only open once a month to the public but is well worth the visit. www.seattle.gov/light/georgetownsteamplant/ has details.
I’m a Steampunk freak and so I just fell in love with the dial and this old elevator.Images will be included in a future Steampunk pieces.
There were great engineering buffs on hand to share their engines.I love talking to these guys.They know their stuff and are so happy to share my simple questions.
I shared a passion for textiles with my Mum.I designed and she made my wedding dress nearly 25 years ago.We attended to opening of Ebony at Bellevue Arts Museum.It was great to catch up with old friends and see some amazing pieces.
My personal favorite was a plus sized evening dress with stunning hand work.Lots of pictures below.I’d highly recommend this exhibit and if you know anyone who has the facilities to host it -it’s just waiting to be shared.
Not my best image ever due to low light.Hopefully the detail shots make up for poor quality.Up close images worked much better.I loved the surfaces in this piece and am pretty sure they will work their way into some of my work.