When I Pick Up the Pen

The opening last night was nice…the show itself looks really cool, some really interesting work. Although all these local shows can be a pain in the butt for delivery and pick up of work and trying to get to all the openings, I like the opportunity to put my work in with other people’s work that I’m not usually hanging with. There were a few FIG members in this exhibit, but there were a lot of other people whose names I didn’t know. It’s cool to see my work hanging out with theirs.

The show is Art That Cuts, and it’s only at Mesa College through next Friday. Definitely worth a visit, though. Bhavna Mehta was the juror and the class on campus designed the exhibit and all the stuff that went with it. I often say I would have loved to have taken a gallery class like that when I was in school. I even occasionally think about it now (and then slap myself a lot because I don’t need to take that on right now).

Helen Redman is still rocking the art world in her 70s (I wanna be 70 and still making art)…this is her piece To Become Her.

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And Bhavna’s two pieces Beat and Wade…combining paper cutting and embroidery.

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My piece, Some Like It Hot, is hanging on the wall with their work, which I loved…

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This piece was fascinating…lots of sewing paraphernalia, but then there are rattles…from rattlesnakes…and they’re wired to rattle…

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So there’s this constant low-level rattling going on that is just so dangerous sounding…

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The piece is Now Is Not a Good Time by Margaret Noble.

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It’s a fascinating piece…here’s a link to a video of it from her website.

This is one of three by artist Kirsten Francis, Sounding OFF

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I was looking at her work and I liked it, and then I read her name and thought, hey. I know that name. Why do I know that name? There was a printmaker about a million years ago whose work I just loved, but never had the money to actually buy any of it. But I saw her at Artwalk or something. Well this is her. Obviously, she’s moved away from the printmaking, but I was so glad to see that her work still speaks to me. Weird, huh?

These were fascinating. One of the materials used in making this? Fire. A beautiful piece, Colour Bunny, by Vincent Wray.

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A detail…

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This is a tiny piece, but so detailed. Little Hands, Little Feet by Nicole Waszak.

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And this piece…Resistance through Existence II by Martha Gil…her Instagram is @gildednopal. Definitely worth a look at her nopal-influenced uterus stickers on Etsy.

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Home after all that, picked up dinner for me and the sick guy, who was getting all the sad looks from Calli.

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I was pretty exhausted. I did some sewing of wool circles and eventually made it to a standing position to work on this…it’s slow. But it’s coming.

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Yeah that one boob was way too high. Although that’s more realistic. Oh well.

Tonight was to be gaming, but sick guy is too sick. So I’ll be grading. It’s OK. I need to get it done. And maybe I’ll have the energy to draw as well. I won’t be marching for science unfortunately tomorrow…I’ll be driving to LA instead for an artist talk and take down of a show. Long day.

But first to get through this one…to the fun stuff, when I pick up the pen.

From the Ranks of the Freaks*

I need to go back and read blogposts from previous months of March, to remind myself that this month is a slog…through grades and assignments and trying not to look ahead to Spring Break, because if you do, you’ll forget about the 7 meetings you have this week. OK, I’m not up to 7 yet, but it’s getting there. And two of them are 2 hours long. I just checked. I’m at 6. 6 meetings. Ugh.

My birthday was Friday and I have to admit it was a rough one. I have a friend who always takes her birthday off from school, but her interactions with kids are not as a teacher, so I think it’s easier for her to walk away from it for a day. Ours requires lesson plans and a hope that shit will actually go the way you planned. The kids singing Happy Birthday was alternately awful and heartfelt. I got lots of hugs. But it was still a lab day…and those are hard. I’m not a big birthday person anyway…I just like a little acknowledgement. Middle school is probably too much acknowledgement.

So I decided that I was not working yesterday. I did do a little work, but mostly I quilted. Which was the right thing to do. My brain is still not happy, but art brain had fun.

Really all I’m doing is outlining. It’s the drawing line brought back in…

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It was a rainy day anyway…

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Sure, I had errands I could have done. I could have graded tests. Ugh.

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It was way more fun to finish the outlining. Besides, I had a plan of getting the binding fabric on Saturday, because we have a thing today that will take up some of the afternoon.

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So I just kept going. It’s meditative. It lets my brain relax.

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I haven’t quilted the outside part yet, but that’s tiny and won’t take long. I finished the shoe about an hour before the quilt store closed, kamikazed over there, and picked out two possible binding fabrics (I’m not good at deciding sometimes)…

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Came home, threw the fabrics in the washing machine, and then headed out to two art openings in the rain. I feel like when it rains, the artists need even more support, because fewer people go out in it. More on those shows later this week. I’m way behind in posting about where I’ve been.

This is Friday night, though. I was waiting for my dinner companion to show up, so I was tracing Wonder Under for the next piece. I didn’t quilt Friday night, because I was tired and that’s when I make mistakes. So I traced. Except Satchemo was pretty convinced it was dinner time (it wasn’t).

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Kitten came out and sat with me for a bit. You can see the reflection of the light table in the window. I love my light table. It’s my favorite piece of furniture in the house.

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And here’s back in time to Thursday night, the opening of #MyVoice/#MiVoz, the 11th Annual Dia de la Mujer exhibit at The Front in San Ysidro.

This piece was fascinating…the three parts kept turning, so it was hard to photograph, but I tried! This is Hidden Treasures by Paola Viola, 3rd place in Emerging Artists.

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Another view as the pieces keep twirling…

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And people are hiding behind, reading the pieces…

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This is Hurts Like Hell by Michelle Montjoy.

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This piece is by Kim Niehans, a fellow FIG member. I was tired, so I was bad about photographing the labels, so I don’t know what it’s called. Luckily, I am computer savvy, so I went to her website and checked…and she is so good at posting her work! I love artists who realize they need to post stuff. This is Self Evident

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This is Gail Schneider’s Sally Yates.

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More fiber! This is Will Work for Free by Cat Chiu Phillips…made of fabric from designer bags.

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And one of my favorite FIG artists, Bhavna Mehta’s work in paper and embroidery, Resist with your voice #3.

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She’s got crazy talent…

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I saw the mural at the San Diego Art Institute for this, but love this print too…this is Arzu Ozkal’s San Diego Women in Resistance.

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Detail shots…

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It’s a beautiful piece…

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This is another FIG member, Judith Christensen, and her piece Women’s Work 2015-2018.

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Each piece is part of a list, lots of groceries and other stuff. We all make lists.

FIG member Anna Stump won 1st prize for Established Artist with her Another Fucking Princess piece that was in our Don’t Shut Up exhibit last year (my piece in this show was also in that exhibit).

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This is a detail of Ingrid Hernandez’ Make America Great Again (MAGA)

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Ah yes, Donald Trump on toilet paper. A classic.

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This piece was resin and leaves, very interesting…Mara Nasland, winning 2nd place in Emerging Artist, with her piece Rising from the Ashes, Stronger Than She Ever Was

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Intriguing structure, glowing with light.

So that was Thursday night. I think I have 4 other shows to post about, but not now. Now I need cat food and breakfast and a plan for groceries and maybe a revised birthday sometime in the future. Like a day where I redo it. Redo’s are good.

*Aimee Mann, Save Me

I Went in Seeking Clarity*

I did pretty well yesterday practicing being a normal human being who isn’t holding down three jobs on a random basis…I haven’t started copyediting yet. I think I’ll do that tomorrow. I have been working on the quilt that has to be done and photographed by January 1. But even spending 3 1/2 hours ironing yesterday, which puts me at 6 hours total, and about a third done. That’s it. (Laughing hysterically in my head). And schoolwork? Didn’t fucking touch any of it yesterday.

Good job, Kathy. No really. We have to live a life that’s worth it. And the art is always part of that, although venturing out of the house occasionally is also a plus.

So I had some Christmas shopping I needed to do, which made driving to an arts and craft sale (a really nice one) a good plan. And it worked. Because I got a good chunk of the shopping done. And then I was rewarded with this…a flight of awesome ciders…drunk while watching the guy prep pomegranate seeds for a future batch. Amazing place, Serpentine Cider up in the Miramar area.

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This art on the wall…also awesome…

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Wood burned and painted…totally amazing.

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Then we came home and I spent about an hour and a half piling up flesh pieces…which I then had to cover up so we could go to an art opening…because I couldn’t get it all done. It’s not even done now…I just picked a place to stop (everything but the little heads on top).

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So I have loved Bhavna Mehta’s paper-cutting work for years. You’ve seen her work here before. She did some community work, helping people make wearable paper art, and last night was the (very crowded) opening at Art Produce Gallery. Bhavna had her floral/leaf strips hanging from the ceiling, and then the women who had created works were walking around…

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And there were pictures of them with their creations on the walls…

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It was very hard to get photos of anything.

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But I tried…

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Some dinner found its way into our gullets and then I came back to iron all that flesh down…

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I still have to do the little heads, but I couldn’t handle the giant piles any more.

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And these are all the other pieces of the body that aren’t flesh-colored…so lungs and heart and tattoos and I don’t even know what else. That will be today maybe? After I finish the heads. We’ll see. I was going to do some schoolwork today too. Plus I’m doing a holiday card workshop. Why? Because I felt like it. Yeah, I already know how to carve a lino block and print it, but this is easier than trying to do it here. And I can walk away from the cleanup! Yeah, I know…whatever.

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It’s a week off, but it always goes quickly. There’s so many errands and tasks associated with the holidays, so it makes it a lot harder to feel like you got a lot done this week. But I’m gonna try to be efficient as hell.

*Indigo Girls, Closer to Fine