Tuesday, November 28, 2017

rocks and age

today i'm thinking about the hands that make 
and how the land
if we let it.
i have had an amazing 2 weeks
more on that later
today is my birthday.
i am a crone now at 61,
an elder
not as old by a long shot as these rocks.
rocks naturally split
found on daily walks
became books
the rock book below is the largest split rock on the left
with its pages
handmade papers shaped to fit
between the two covers
of rock.
the largest of all, 
number 1, not shown here,
 is more than twice as big as this one.
 the second gray rock covers are book number 5, (maybe)
sold while visiting Toronto.
this makes me very happy.

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

november for certain

there's no reason this job isn't done
completely stripped and seed fiber separated.
(that milkweed again)

 the whole pile should be this
 but i have been otherwise occupied.
i've bruised my forearms on the beater at zone 4
after a long disentangling with pliers and my aforementioned arms
and fingers that escaped in rather good shape.
hemp sliver
beautiful stuff, it was hard to cut,
so i cut it into too long bits
and they ground around beautifully until
didn't anymore.
it may have taken me an hour to unscrew the keeper plates,
pull out a ton of hemp
haul out more,
and using pliers, haul out the rest
bruising up those forearms meanwhile.
 solace was available
 and some experiments are happening at home with the woven books

 and a simply lovely large and flat sketchbook
sometimes things go the right way.
students are busy, finishing up three projects.
one of our students is making a felted vovelle for her interpretive book.
she told me she knits (evidence: her scarf), crochets, sews, and felts,
so i suggested she might be interested in fiberarts and she said,
and i love this,
"oh, (pause) i didn't know that was a thing".
our students are loving learning, exploring and strengthening hand skills
as they make beautiful books and enclosures. 
i'm off to toronto tomorrow morning and back on sunday
(as long as my car issues keep working themselves out)
then it's thanksgiving week.
i won't see the class for almost 2 weeks. one of them said yesterday
this class needs to be another semester long.
so many of them love what we're doing!

Friday, November 10, 2017

paper trials

i love it when art is on the walls
at school.
 my failed batch of 3 linen shirts.
i need to understand indigo better.
i used it from 2 sources, one more successful than the other
but still, 
i have much to learn.
 making sheets with the business card size moulds is a fun tedium
and makes nifty calling cards.
 i used all of my indigo.
every bit 
of blue dust. 
 we took our students to visit the archives and special collections.
they were entranced the entire time.

 melissa schulengurg looking at my book november song
 they particularly loved janus press books

 this morning, 18 degrees and a little crunchy snow
 the roofing waits until next week.
winter comes.

Monday, November 6, 2017

time was, is.

ian posted this old photo today on fb
and it all came back.
farm children
sheep & lambs
my papermill and house.
old manure spreader made into a wagon
and me photographing a living.
this was early spring.
 my living is different now
more quiet
but maybe, just maybe,
less loving frolicking. 
this is late autumn.
 time passes and your heart will break 
and heal
over and over
and you will,
if you're lucky
become real.
it's good work.

Friday, November 3, 2017

digging deeper

who can say why certain things...
shapes, colors, textures, 
animals, even,
who can say why they speak to you, 
to one, in a certain specific, peculiar way.
perhaps they appear in dreams or day dreams, 
maybe hormone driven, 
maybe longing
maybe something altogether 
unknown or unknowable
but for whatever reason this shield i found on facebook
a first nations thing
pleases me.

 i was looking for tiny beads to use with the loom books
(i accumulated an embarrassment of old beads)
i was looking for the greasy yellow ones.
 some live in type trays
which is ridiculous in too many ways.
these two strand sets are small and beautiful
and i see now 
that they are colors i used a long time ago in a tapestry.
 i lifted them out of the little wooden rectangle
that had become a cache.
field mice leave little stashes in my world,
and often i don't know the seeds. 
but here is, 
amongst others, 
 cottontail is large now
and doesn't show itself often.
 elsewhere in my back yard
november arrives
there is a wonderful type event happening when the morning sun 
bathes the studio table in light.
two loom books completed, one with drawing,
and soon a larger one.
today i'm pulping 3 linen shirts.
an edition is planned!

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