Saturday, July 17, 2021

What has happened in the past 5 months?

I didn't think much had happened in the past 5 months until I checked my calendar.
It was winter and we were in the middle of another year of the Covid-19 pandemic
when I last wrote in February 2021

Now it is the middle of July and not only are the Cone Flowers 

blooming, but our crepe myrtle has sprung into glorious ruffled cascading flowers

And in March I had my two vaccinations.
Also in mid-March, I had a big birthday. A cake created by Granddaughter Julia Fogg 
and placemats and pictures from niece, Julie Putnik Swain
From many friends, and relatives a wonderful video with messages,
 both serious and fun, songs, jokes, and comments that I have enjoyed viewing 
many times and again today.
or look up BJ's 90th birthdy video on You Tube
Granddaughter, Alexandra Fogg, brought a big 90 so everyone could see

 how old I am and I could never forget it. Time marches on......

Virginia Quilt Museum had one of its galleries with the theme, 


 My The Life of a Cone Flower was included in this show that ended last week. 

Sorry I did not write this blog a little earlier.

This embroidery is 26 by 18 inches and it has been appliqued on an old tea towel
At this time the Creative Council Council is having its 33rd Biennial at Strathmore Mansion.
I am happy to have my Satirical Stillness accepted. It is 40 by 61 inches.
It was given an award in craftsmanship by the Fiber Arts Study Group.
A couple of months ago, a good friend, John Yakaitis, remembering many years ago how much Clark enjoyed his squirrel-free bird feeder until it finally fell and broke, then decided to engineer a new one for him. Now Clark enjoys sitting in the kitchen and watching his new bird feeder full of birds flying in and out all day.
There are many birds and an occasional squirrel who can't figure out how to get to the food.
 I call the branches where the birds sit and wait their turn 'the waiting room'. 
You may see as many as 16 at a time sitting on one branch just watching.
A few months ago I became fascinated with Clark's hands; the veins, bones, and colors
I have tried for several months to draw his hand with colored pencils
I doubt I will ever finish this drawing.
This is the year of the Cicadas and everyone knows we won't see them again till 2038.
We have a very good caretaker, now, for helping Clark a few hours each week. 
Clark was telling her his 96th birthday was June 21 and she told him hers was 2 days later.
I wanted to make her a card for her birthday with an embroidered "C" for Claudine.
Our next-door neighbor is Thornell Page. He was nice enough to come
 to the bank with us when we needed a witness for some legal papers we were signing.
 I made him a thank you card embroidering his initials.
I have 4 good friends who are all turning 90 this year so,
 I have begun to create cards for them.....
painting some canvas in bright colors and then 
adding some simple machine embroidery here and there. 
I plan to create some white embroidery '90's to add to these colorful backgrounds.
In the meantime, I have a neighbor, Julia Cancio, who is turning 99
 on August 3. I have her card ready to go, now.
I believe you can tell that I am not accomplishing much in the studio, 
since I have not written this blog since last February. 
My life has changed in a different direction. 
You might say, I am a caretaker now.
I will write sooner for the next blog and
hoping the pandemic may end soon for all.

Saturday, February 13, 2021

And, the Pandemic continues.....

  I do not remember when I last wrote, but we have been 
having periods of winter. Beautiful as it is, staying in and
 just watching the snow fall is restful, glad to be staying in.

And, watching these 3 year old amaryllis coming up,
 two months after they were planted is a sort of a miracle.
Due to family and home care I have had very little time for studio work....
so it was a pleasure to see this piece pop up on SAQA’s Red Gallery.
This was created for good friend, Ann Dunn, 
50 to 60 years ago when we still lived in California.
It is created with layers of both embroidery and fabrics.

SAQA (Studio Art Quilt Ass) is having an auction 
with all pieces 6 by 8 inches, later matted so they will show 
only 4.5 by 6.5 inches.
 This small piece was part of the planning for my
Imagine Compromise, 1 by 4 foot piece in 2020.

When I have a few minutes I make cards for
upcoming birthdays and other events.
These continue the series I probably displayed  before 
of collage still-lifes, cutting images from magazines.

I believe that these will be the end of this series.
Too much finding and cutting even though they were fun to do.
And Valentines Day is upon us tomorrow.
 The NY Times had a craft suggestion in last Sunday’s
 At Home section. Use the newspaper to make Valentine cards.
So I did and made two

This with empty hearts heavy outlined in black marker
And, this one with the centers of nine hearts.
I m trying to think nines,
More on that later
Finally another heart Valentine for The New Image Artists
who have been overwhelmed with Rock, Paper, Scissors....
now showing at the Museum of the Shenandoah Valley.

Here’s hoping everyone eventually gets the vaccine and 
our pandemic year(s) end.
I will always be thankful for the many interesting
 Zoom meetings and lectures. 
There is so much to see, read about, and learn about
 besides all the exercise classes.
I do hope these Zooms will not end.

Thursday, November 26, 2020

Thanksgiving 2020....a very unusual year.

Since today is Thanksgiving, I feel it is appropriate to fill in events since I last wrote.
I am grateful to have this time to remember this fall, 
not as colorful as in the past but that may be because  
I have not been out driving around the country-side seeing all the falling leaves.

We do have this bright red Japanese Maple in our front yard.
The view with the sun lighting the leaves has an Amazon truck
giving us a dark background.
Walking to the curb and enjoying all the brightness of this tree 
as it colors and covers our street.

I did finish one piece before the deadline for an upcoming show. 
The theme for this show is Imagination.
The parameters for the work had to be 4 feet by 1 foot.

The title of my work is IMAGINE COMPROMISE

This is the  drawing for the handshake and below the detail

Sorry, that first word above in the statement was CHOOSING

And below a few of the cards some finished and some in the works.
This first one below was for my neighbor, Julia on her 98th birthday.

This next one for our daughter, Vicky's birthday, in late August.
She would never have time to just lay on an chaise lounge,
so I gave her this one.
The next few have not gone out yet.

This one with an embroidered bird.

And this with tiny furniture.

These are all collages with most pictures cut from shelter magazines.

For our  great grandson, Golden,
we have seen enjoy tide pools....
And the inside of that card with trucks we believe he may still enjoy.
An unfinished card for a good friend

 And the inside with pictures he has given me.

Don't because this year will end soon and who knows what happens next.
....As it says here.....
I will try to add more small art news soon.

Friday, July 10, 2020

Artwork and more during the Pandemic

I had neglected to show the work (except in details)
 previously as these artworks were being saved for the New Image Artists 
exhibit at the Museum of the Shenandoah Valley.
The theme for that show is ROCK, PAPER, SCISSORS
so I included the game. Using Granddaughter Alexandra's
hands, on the left and Clark's hands, on the right, playing the game.
 For months past I had developed large papier mache rocks 
and other things made with paper.
We are also creating very large scissors to be arranged on a wall.
also created for the Rock Paper Scissors exhbit.
 Imperfect because the arrangement is scissors, rocks, and paper.
Above, some of the scissors are embroidered, 
all the rocks are embroidered and
 the paper uses pleated foreign money.
 Much of June was taken up embroidering this 
old sewing machine for an article in the 
Local Living section of the Washington Post.
The article's subject was about how so many people are dusting off
 their old machines to make masks during the pandemic.
That is why I added the tiny red fabric mask to that old machine 
before it was finally photographed for the cover.
The decision to show the ragged edges of the white fabric
came about because the embroidery didn't show up as stitched thread.
 It looked like it had been printed.

 I had asked our grandchildren
 (adults now, all living in their own homes) 
since they had to continue their jobs at home, 
if they had created an office or desk space to go to each day.
Caroline sent me this picture, above, of her office at home. 
She has since bought a new chair to be more comfortable.
I enjoy making cards and wanted to do one for her half birthday.
I took her little home office picture and collaged it into a different space.
That gave me ideas for other collaged cards.

 Since I enjoy still-life art I started cutting out pictures
from magazines to make a group of still-life cards.
 Not as easy or fast as I thought it might be,
 but it is fun to do. I actually had to hunt for
and cut much more than I planned.
 I did take time to stitch some tiny embroideries 
to add in some cards. 
Above the bird and a flower in the vase are embroidered.
 And in this one, another embroidered flower or plant and
a bird perched on the arm of that chair.

Below, this last collage I created for the book of memories 
that our daughter, Vicky compiled from friends and relatives
 for Clark's 95th birthday.

Someday our lives may be back to normal, whatever that is, 
but in the meantime, our lives can be so full of
 many virtual things to do and see.
Having exercise classes available and
 to be able to see Hamilton was such a treat 
besides virtual tours of museums, 
National Parks, lectures, and on and on.
I feel lucky and need a 48 hour day to do and see so much.