27 April, 2010 at 6:01 am (family, life, not so ancient devices, work) (, , , , , , , )

Instead of working on art I am being a dutiful child and scanning ancient family photos, which takes a lot of time but is interesting. I hadn’t seen steam-powered tractors before, I like how complicated this one looks. And what is flinging that hay, a haybuchet?

Apologies for the terrible joke, just one of a zillion things that go through the mind during hours of scan, label, file, repeat.

There is also time to think about how different my life is from theirs. Some years before these photos were taken some of the people in them walked 2400 km to a new life, then there was another big shift to another new life, the one I am looking at. I can’t even imagine co-ordinating walking entire families that far, through whatever weather, eating only bread, cider and sour milk offered by strangers along the road. And how to even find the right roads, without all the handy street signs we have today?

Besides a good map I think I’d want a series of serious foot massages.


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6 October, 2009 at 9:23 pm (art, blue-eyed crow, life, work) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , )


This is what I’ve been finishing up this week, another architecture + script.  I love gothic anything, I haven’t put the buildings in my work much, but I do use this old Italian handwriting frequently.

All the travelling has stopped (for now) after a weekend at a beautiful town up the coast for a wedding (also beautiful). My computer celebrated by coming down with some dreadful, barely fixable condition, and now, after everything it went through as a cure, I’m having a hard time finding my stuff. I may have to learn quite a bit more about computers to get everything re-organized, adding to the chaos of moving back in to my regular life.

It has not been enough to keep me from thinking about a trip to New Orleans in March though, I’ve been dreaming about the food, music, and the architecture.

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23 September, 2009 at 6:56 am (art, blue-eyed crow, life, work) (, , , , , )


My three+ months of travel will come to an end soon, it’s odd making that transition from mobile to stationary.  No more thinking about which stamps to use, or how much money to exchange, and no scramble to get Ryan Air boarding passes printed to avoid a penalty at the airport that is bigger than my ticket cost.  Post-travel life always feels so quiet, too quiet, but it will be nice to have predictable internet access, plus it’s easier to cook in my own kitchen.  Except that I love to eat but am not that wild about cooking, so I don’t care about that last one.  Oh well.

In these last weeks I’m getting a bit of work done, but I have several pieces that I am 90% happy with and can’t decide what the missing 10% is, very frustrating.

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15 kilos

3 September, 2009 at 8:28 pm (life, local, Uncategorized) (, , , , , , , , , )


No art today because I am travelling, all packed to Ryan Air’s precise requirements.  These are photographs I took during a drive with my sister the other day, all things we won’t see for a while.  The farmer who sold us honey that day insisted that we come down to pick the tomatoes with him so that we could appreciate the layout of his farm.  The tomatoes were amazing with some herbs we picked and chevre on bread.


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11 June, 2009 at 9:27 pm (art, blue-eyed crow, family, friends, life, work) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )


I’m excited because I’m getting ready for three months of travel, but I’m also mourning because I haven’t been able to work on assemblages lately, and I won’t be able to bring those materials on the road.  I will be restricted to working on pieces like this one (which I do love creating), plus a few fiber projects which pack easily.  It’s frustrating to want to be making things and not be able to get my hands on the bits and pieces, but at least I will be finding more in the four countries I’ll be travelling through to visit my family.

There are a few things I’m sharing from the garden before I leave – raspberries, boysenberries, figs, pads for nopales (with lentils, yum!), and this lone avocado, very buttery.  When I get back there may be a few strawberry and pineapple guavas left, then there will be pomegranates.  I’ll miss the peaches – heavenly when they’re ripe and the skin slides off in your fingers, also the ripening of the manzana bananas and thimbleberries.  My stubborn pineapples think they are just for show, all the other bromeliads bloom while they just sit there, but I am very happy because an ancient cycad that was damaged and seemed to die three years ago just produced a beautiful crown of leaves.

I love traveling, although I will miss a lot of close friends – three months is a long time between visits, but I will be staying with family and friends, some of whom I only see every few years, and there will be a new bébé when I get back.


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12 November, 2008 at 7:00 pm (life) (, , , )

dsc_0348adsc_0351adsc_0346a1As is probably clear, even though I haven’t posted many photos of my work on here (I will, I swear), I am of the salvaging-type persuasion.  Sometimes something out-of-the-ordinary turns up which starts me in a new direction artistically, but today’s find (above) has me imagining I am staying here aa and planning in the next few months to explore a bit here picture-89ja before returning to do some archaeology with my permaculture friend from yesterday’s post (who, when I met him, was involved with antiquities at a major museum).

I was happy that the canvas cover had managed to stay with the suitcase all these years, and that it is all in such good shape despite the canvas being wet.

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17 October, 2008 at 6:19 am (family, work) (, , , , , )

I grew up in a map & chart loving family, they hung on the walls, filled drawers, burst from pockets in the car, and were consulted frequently.  I especially love ancient maps, they are so beautiful, at the same time more complicated and simpler than modern maps.  Just looking at them brings adventures to mind – Maria Sibylla Merian arriving in Surinam in 1699, my aunties bribing their way across a Chinese border decades ago (and getting arrested), being 17 and trying to find a long enough train ride in Austria that I can get some sleep.  Because I have been working with metal recently they are not very prominent in my current pieces, but some boxes develop stories as they progress and end up with a map fragment hidden somewhere inside.

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11 October, 2008 at 7:07 am (art, blue-eyed crow, work) (, , , , , , , , , , , )

The retreat is over and I’m here to testify that luggage filled with tools is heavy.  Very heavy.  But the steel bench vise did come in handy!  The retreat was fantastic, being with other artists is energizing, but I have a hard time creating around other people, so I didn’t have to worry about carefully packing up a lot of delicate finished pieces for the trip back.  Just heavy tools.  Did I mention the bench vise includes an anvil?

The box in the photo is a simple one, I love the face.  I’m trying to find more of these vintage white tins, they are by far my favourites.

In my eternal search for tools I have not been able to find anyone locally who carries a riveting hammer that is steel and has a round head, so I’m off to order one on-line because my next projects involve a lot of riveting.

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