Friday, November 5, 2010

School days :)

OK- so going back to school... FUN!
(But first let's start with a gratuitous puppy picture of my doggies snoozing on the passenger seat of my car.)
Really, this is great. At this age, I am not partying, not dating and not hooking up. I have a regular sleep schedule, a lovely bed, I eat real food regularly and enjoy all sorts of other things younger college students don't. It makes the work load so much easier! Easier might have something to do with the intense project load I kept up with in work too... but I am having fun. (Except for the random moaning and whinging about expository essays. Essays at 35 years old! Give me something to analyze or a design presentation any day. Ok, enough whining.)
My program is called Arts and Religious Practice. (Evergreen doesn't do many individual classes. We take one program all quarter and get credits in multiple disciplines.) The Arts bit is in both Printmaking and Fine Metals studios with two very organized and focused instructors.
Printmaking So far we have focused on relief printmaking from woodcuts and intaglio from copper engraving. Here is a picture of one of my burins (engraving tool) plus some scrap copper for practicing. The close up of the practice piece and tip of the burin shows you how much more practice I need! These things make itsy teensy little scratches, but they all show up in the printing. The bottom picture is a print of a sample plate about the same size as this plate. Circles are hard! (I may just be stealing hubby's magnifier Ott-lite for that, but don't tell him.) We are just getting to the hard line etching now and aquatint is soon. Somehow, we are already past mid-term! Lots of bits & pieces in the portfolio for that one.
Metals The fine metals studio is non-ferrous stuff, nothing with iron, no steel. We work with mostly copper and brass and silver solder and fun stuff like that. I don't have any pictures of my samples in there yet, but soon. My current project is a copper spindle whorl- I have high hopes for it turning out nice & shiny. And usable.
So I guess since I am making things I will have to start taking pictures of them for here, now that I am past the simple, sampled not very attractive stuff, that is. Maybe I will post a picture of my first project from metals, a nameplate. Or not. This program is lots of work, lots of fun!
There is not much quilt-y or weaver-y. But I have a plan for that too. Maybe I will post pictures of that too. (Hey- Anything can happen! I posted in less than 2 months this time!)

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Oops- I seem to have wandered off

Well... so much for good intentions about posting more often. (Now I must wonder how long the next break will be!) And seriously, I have no good reason. Except that I haven't been doing anything. At least not stitch-y anythings.
I have been doing a few things in a half-assed fashion. Like I started learning to spin, but realized I wasn't going to spend the time required to practice. Not right now. I will come back to that.
And since I have nothing pretty to share, how about a quick recounting of my life, because if I don't have a good excuse, I can at least make an attempt at a whine, no?

In the past month or so:
I moved my real estate license to a new firm. I am now at Abbey Realty, a locally owned company. It is a big change not to be part of RE/MAX after 8 years. But really, I have been progressing on a different track for my business anyway. And it gets me the best of both worlds, as they say. So big change #1!

#2 change is Zaboo. I found this sweet year old pug boy in a parking lot 2 weeks ago. But nobody has claimed him, after much posting and searching for his family myself. So I have a second pug! He is sweet and loving. But he is unaltered and has a few habits we are addressing. As you can imagine, Lilly thinks he is uncouth. Perhaps that will change after a certain surgery next week. But he gets on just fine with Bandit cat. Also, he is very nervous of large dogs, is very submissive and doesn't seem to understand doggy language/politeness real well, so we are working on the social bit.

And the Biggest Bit of Chaos: I am going to school! It all started back in March or April when I decided I really did want to go to school and needed to figure out how. I have been looking into it for a while. So I was able to decide that Evergreen State College is a good place, and I went in and was told, "Great! You have a week to get your application in." Panic! But I did it, and I muddled through the paperwork and had to write a "personal essay". And I got in. And I got financial awards to pay for it. And I am taking 16 credit hours!
Evergreen has this fantastic system, where we don't take individual classes, but one Program where we get credits in multiple disciplines. My program is called Arts & Religious Practice. We are looking at the objects and practices of medieval European Christianity, Judaism and Islam. And we make art. Fine metal work and wood cutting for intaglio printmaking to be precise. So that may be the pictures I have for posting in the near future. I am incredibly excited about it. Also nervous, fluttery, wide eyed, twitchy. But excited! And classes start in about 24 hours.
Not really sure how work will happen, but I will fit it in somehow.

Anyway, that is the main update. Other things since my last post:
Camping with my sister's kids and lots of family. Ocean with my aunt and her two grandkids. Fairgrounds weaving display showing kids the how-to. Lots of video game time. Some lawn mowing. Some walks with dogs. Work.
But no fiber work, no sewing.
Perhaps this was a transitional year.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

First off!

First it was on....

And I have my first off-the-loom!
Just abit more work to do, cleanup of a couple spots on the selvage where the last thread wasn't picked up and then the fringe. And washing of course. But I get to have show & tell at guild this month!

Friday, February 26, 2010

How many looms does a new weaver need?

I think that is a question probably asked of all weavers...
But it is a useless question! Because the people who might know the answer don't care to answer it.
Instead, I shall simply show off my emerging studio. Yay for extra buildings.

(Yes, I do admit some good old fashioned rich-white-american guilt about using a whole building for weaving when I am such a rank beginner. But it goes away pretty quickly.)

First off, let me introduce you to the newest acquisition This is probably the last loom for me for a loooong time. (No more space see?) This charming piece of modern engineering is a Bergman Countermarche. Bergman is a well known and respected builder from the Pacific Northwest and I was basically gifted this loom. With tools!

And the under side of the Bergman.
It has 6 treadles, 4 shafts, string heddles and enclosed castle storage. And I am really curious to see how long ago this loom was dressed! There is old newsprint between the warp. (I will do a whole post on the discovery process.)

Here is a loom I am learning on. It is not owned by me. It is owned by my Guild. Lovely little 8 shaft Mountain Loom.

I have some 5/2 cotton dressed on 4 shafts here, and I am going to do a nice 2/2 twill for a lightweight scarf. The warp is a nice dark nubby green and that teal is mercerized so will shimmer a bit as is comes together.

I am making the scarf for a beginner weaver series my guildmates at the Olympia Weavers Guild have created just for us newbies! My guild is amazing... that is yet another post.

The tool case: aka old unused audio/video shelves. Perfect for showing off how often I dust. And a nice selection of tools, shuttles, bungee cords and the other accoutrment of weavers.
Please note the cheerful orange of the drill/electric bobbin winder.
I also now have 4 kinds of clamps to use for various things. Tools stores are fun!
Also note the lack of dryway...
I have such hopes to have the rest of the insulation and drywall in this room this spring. Because it is blasted COLD in the winter. Patience.
And that brings us to the wall o' fiber!
Thanks to a great many generous weavers and garage sales, I am totally stocked!
It is a good choice to take photos of your stash, as it makes it clear what your color preferences are. I can't wait to see how that changes as I start making things from a plan!
I did not introduce the Rigid Heddle Loom or the frame loom or the warping board, but they live in there too. I expect great things from them all!

Can't live without

I just need to tell everyone about these totally geeky half gloves. I think they are made for knitters.
I use them for everything!
I have arthritis in my hands and arms from various things like waitressing and keyboarding. And sometimes, especially if the barometer changes dramatically I get all achey and doing small motor skills things hurts.
But since I got these little nylon gloves, no more pain! (And I have been playing lots & lots of video games so I have definitely stress-tested them.)
Thanks, just had to share.
PS- Yes, they are turned inside out. I think it is counter productive to have the extra pressure of seams on my wrists.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

I wandered away a bit...

It has been FOUR MONTHS since I posted!?!?
I really haven't been doing much though... just workworkwork. I haven't even finished those baby quilts.
I am heading off for a weekend of sewing next weekend. And I just started the Weaving Basics course through my guild. Today was discussing loom types etc. We got a warp off the board and lots of time to discuss all 7 ways 5 different weavers do things lol
I swear I have been doing something creative in the past few monts...
I took a class about beading on fabric with Larkin Van Horn. Also, I am taking over the website for the quilt guild and helping with our auction. (Mark Lipinsky is going to be our auctioneer! He is also doing a seminar and a two day class. But I bet the auction is hilarious!)
I have been to the ocean twice.
My mom came to visit me over my birthday & Thanksgiving. Wish she lived closer :(
Not exactly creative... but engrossing: online gaming. Dungeons & Dragons online to be precise :)
But that's it.
Pretty pathetic. Oh well.
I will try to get at least one post a month up here. Promise! (with pictures)