Surface Pattern Design

Here Fishy, Fishy, Fishy…!

When my kids were little the three of us spent a lot of time watching Sesame Street together. One of the Bert and Ernie sketches had the two of them in a rowboat, fishing — without any luck, until Ernie had the bright idea to just call the fish. “Here fishy, fishy, fishy!” And suddenly fish were flying out of the water and into their boat.

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There was another little “mini documentary” about an Eskimo child and her day to day life which had one line in it that Lina and I still quote pretty much any time there’s salmon for dinner: “I realllly, realllly like feeesh!”

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Well. I DO really, really like fish, so I am having a great time creating a series of 10 small tarps which will be hung on the framework of the patio railing at Reel Foods on Capitol Blvd. starting in July, and running through September into October, depending on the weather.

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I’ve completed the first layer on all 10 — they are cut and taped — and will start in soon on the second layer of Sharpie and paint pen “grafitti.”

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Meanwhile, I am getting everything ready for our Open House this Saturday. (You can see my announcement about it on the TVAA website Community Post here.) My plan is to hang some of the tarps on our fence out front, in the hope of catching the eyes of passing house-hunters.

House-fishermen?

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Here fishy, fishy, fishy…!

Houses for Sale

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Yesterday I found refuge from all the sturm und drang of our house sale in the pleasant distraction of doing a little house painting.

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A little bird house painting, to be exact.

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They say when you’re feeling sorry for yourself the best medicine is to think about somebody else and do something nice for them.

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Every year the Idaho Humane Society finds various creative ways to raise money to help find homes for all the wonderful animals that end up on their doorstep. This year, artists are painting bird houses to be auctioned.

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It felt good to think for a change about somebody else finding their perfect people and future home.

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So…now I have two houses for sale.

And I feel good.

Hellooooo…….? Anybody Still Out There?

I know, I know! I’ve been just terrible about keeping up with this blog. Inertia is a total bitch! She sneaks up on you and before you realize it, it’s been 2 WEEKS since your…MY…last post. Uuugh.

At least the inertia hasn’t extended to the rest of my life as I’ve actually been quite busy. On the TVAA front, I submitted a piece to the TVAA & Track 13 juried exhibition “Water Works” called “The View from Logan.” I’ll find out if it gets into the show this week.

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I also got the prospectus written, and it’s now posted for Foray IV — our final FORAY, and my last exhibition as the Chair of the TVAA Exhibition Committee. I’ve been the “buck stopper” for all 15 shows we’ve put on so far, 14 of which I curated. It’s been wonderful, a crapton of work, and I’m ready for a break.

Along with Will Spearman and the other Excoms, Carol Elliot Smith, and Jordan Newberry, we laid out the dates and themes for the shows through 2015 and will soon have those posted on the TVAA website. It will be a good year and I plan to create new work for each of the shows. Our themes will be “Menagerie,” “Spring Awakening,” “Collage/Assemblage,” and “Cuisine-Art.”

I’ve also been seeing spots everywhere I look!

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That’s a hot pink Lula as one of the See Spot Walk dogs I painted for this year’s campaign. My designs are showing up everywhere — on posters, rack cards, in the Boise Weekly. Lula’s famous, and she has no idea!

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I also took the time to create a piece on the off chance it might become the cover of this year’s Moxie Java Idaho Ho Ho CD. They said they’d let us know by the 15th of September and I haven’t heard anything (All together now….Grrrrrrrr!) so I guess, no news probably means no cover. But here’s the design anyway. It’s called “Googly Tidings to You and Your Kin.”

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I also (I’m trying to see how many “I also’s” I can get into this post) completed my first Second Life of my Treefort Tarp Picada “Granny Squares.” It’s too big to have just one photo of the whole thing, so here are a couple of detail shots:

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And finally, I also (that makes 5) have begun yet another rearrangement of our house to better accommodate our use of the rooms as studio/working/living/showing/entertaining/escaping spaces. The first room to be transformed is a room that we called the “workroom” but which was really the “dump” — the room where things we planned to deal with later went to die.

We emptied it out completely, vacuumed up about 20 deadly poisonous spiders, then replaced tools and things we actually will use again in an orderly fashion, and today I plan to prime the walls for painting a color other than their current shade of “death warmed over.” I’m so excited!

Oh! And the best part is we’ve discovered that if you put ANYTHING with a “FREE” sign on it out in our driveway it will disappear. Like magic. All this time, and it was our driveway where we should have been putting those things we planned to deal with later! Well, live and learn!

I’ll try to be better about posting from now on. But if things get too crazy I can’t promise I won’t hang a “FREE” sign around my neck and go sit in my driveway.

At least you’ll have an explanation if I disappear again!

Tempus Fugit

The deadline for submissions for TVAA’s next exhibition “Four Eyes: An Optical Collusion” is looming. I’ve completed one collaboration, the block print “Confluence,” and I am in the process of completing a second one with Barbara Bowling.

It will be titled “The Abdication of the Sylvan Beauty Queen on the Occasion of her Epiphany,” and will have three parts.

This is one of the parts, which I have just finished, the second part is underway, and Barbara is busily fabricating the third part as I write.

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Nec requies, reficite lassum!

Yep. I’m Hooked.

Yep. I’m hooked. Spoonflower, I think I love you.

Here are three of the designs I made yesterday with my new obsession. I’ll show you the image I used first, and then the fabric design next.

This is the print I made for the Wingtip Press Leftovers show:

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And this is the fabric design using the image without altering the color. I’m calling this design “Shards.”

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This is a grouping of the doggies I designed for this year’s “See Spot Walk” fundraiser for the Idaho Humane Society:

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And this is the fabric design with the colors altered. This one is called “Hot Dogs!”

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Finally, this is the ink drawing I did for the design for the block I carved for my portion of the collaborative block print “Confluence.”

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And this is the fabric design with 24 colors — I told you I was obsessed! I’m calling it “Fire & Ice Indian Feather.”

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What do you think? Seriously.

Am I just having too much fun, or do you think these would actually make fabric which you would buy? Let me know. You can let me know by emailing me in the “Contact Me” link in my sidebar.

Uh-oh!

With all the temptations already available to me, from surfing other artists’ blogs, to pinning recipes sure to send me into instant sugar shock, to Netflix marathons, the last thing I need is yet another distraction. But have I ever found one. In fact, I think this one may even become an obsession.

Many of you will already be very familiar with it, and for those of you who are not, I’m talking about Spoonflower.

I have only just begun to scratch the surface and haven’t even really figured out how to navigate through all the possibilities available to me. No matter. I’m hooked.

This is what I came up with in about 20 minutes of goofing around. I started with my painting “Up, Up and Away (Hither and Yon)”

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And then I played with the direction of the pattern and the colors and got these four different possibilities….

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These photos are cropped screen shots of my patterns so the resolution isn’t great, but regardless, I was knocked out by how cool they looked. Almost like Native American patterns, or Pendleton wool blankets.

You’ll be seeing more from Sasi at Spoonflower, I guarantee. Be looking for the link to my account in my sidebar. It will be coming soon!

Easter Egg Filled Empty Nest

In spite of Lina and Logan being grown and gone, and the desire to decorate for Easter being somewhat diminished as a result, I still manage to refill our empty nest with painted eggs and funny bunnys every year around this time.

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Painted wooden eggs apparently last forever. You can’t devil them, and they don’t make your teeth hurt like Cadbury’s Cream Eggs, but they sure are pretty.

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Bringing them out every year whether the kids are home or not, we go to church or not, we share a meal with family and friends or not, is one of my domestic rituals.

I see my life in circles, and bringing out the painted eggs and placing them this year in our empty nest…another circle is complete.

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Second Helpings: Painted Chairs

I don’t know what makes people think matched sets of things are so special. Personally, I prefer the intentionally mismatched. The sets where everything is the same, but different, like in SET, the game.

GOOD……………………………BETTER……………………..BEST:

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So when I set up our new cosy dining room and we needed two more chairs to round up our seating capability to four I looked for a couple of “Windsors” to go with the two we already had. I found two which were similar — same rounded back, but smaller — giving me the kind of mismatched set I like the best.

Then I decided to paint them in entirely different ways.

The first, I painted black. You may have noticed by now, I love black as a background.

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I painted glazed donuts with sprinkles as the motif. Better I should sit on them than the reverse, if you know what I mean!

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I used acrylic paint and sealed with Minwax Polycrylic Sealer.

For the second chair I looked to my traffic box painting “Good Luck Sweet Cookie” for inspiration and cobbled together a variety of Chinese mofifs.

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I used three shades of blue, and metallic copper acrylic paint and sealed it the same as the first chair.

I’m pretty sure the characters translate to “Do not sit on the Donuts.”

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Second Helpings? Yes! The same but different? Yes!
Intentionally Mismatched? Yes!

SET!

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My Cosy Dining Room

Since the beginning of the year I have either been swamped with my public art project; in the process of taking down (Foray III) or putting up (Metamorphosis) an exhibition for TVAA; or on artistic “hold” waiting to shake off the throes of inertia.

One of the things which I neglected during that time was my ongoing remix of our house, now that Logan has moved out and our space has essentially doubled.

I left off working on our cosy dining room in December. I was really happy to have gotten as far with it as I did before the holidays, and now that things are returning to a normal pace, I’m back to work on that room once again.

Here’s how it’s looking now…

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Tomorrow I’ll show you the two chairs I’ve painted so now we can seat four. It just keeps getting cosier!