Posted in creativity, Writing

Gleeful Celebration

This is a rendition of a collage I made in January. The original is actually a lot more gleeful because it’s on orange construction paper with gold chocolate truffle wrappers. Suffice it to say that the celebration involved unwrapping the truffles …

The sketch effect is from processing the scan through dumpr sketch, a free program with many possibilities, both creative and educational. It can create sketches from photos, so you could create personalized family colouring books, for example.

Go to and click on the links!

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More on baraka

which is luck or blessings, things that happen at opportune times.

I found Kay Greenlees’ book Creating Sketchbooks for Embroiderers and Textile Artists left in our apartment laundry room. What are the odds! Here’s a link to the page:;=114&id;=453#

Batsford Books have been going since 1843 and I remember them from my childhood. A lot of the textile books are tied into the City and Guilds courses, and this book is written somewhat from that perspective.

Other recent blessings:

  • a perfectly good set of everyday dishes, saving not just money but lugging them home from the store on the bus
  • a t-shirt with a slogan on that can be collaged into an art quilt
  • dining room chairs that would otherwise have gone to the landfill
  • store credit for the Beacon thrift store @ Quadra and Hillside – this gives me permission to pop in from time to time and indulge in collecting textiles. I found a sheer printed scarf (see the photo!) that will make a great layer in a quilt and a home-made brocade skirt which I’ve deconstructed for a wall hanging.

Progress with work/creation

My total hours for last week was 27 hours and 10 minutes.

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Everything in the Garden

A wall hanging work in progress using fusible web (YAY for Steam-A-Seam 2!), assorted commercial fabrics, and Fabrico marker for the faces on the masks.

When in Thailand in Chiang Mai, I ventured out alone to the market area where the fabric shops are and that’s where I found the hibiscus print. The blue body is a lightning design — it works even better than I thought it would. The blue head is from a tiny scrap of commercial fabric. The rest of it doesn’t look like faces, just abstract marks, but every time I looked at the bit I used here, I could only see a face.

One figure is frozen, static, unchanging, the other is alive and amazing transformations are taking place within her. Yet both hold the same mask ready to use.

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Weird, funny

This is a page from my gluebook, done yesterday! The map is a genuine result from Yahoo maps which I think was trying to tell me something about venturing into the wilds of north Scottsdale. It comes complete with the little caveat about doing a reality check and making sure the road is still there. I knew it was a good idea to save that page — certainly a better idea than using it to navigate.
Maps fascinate me and I’m working on a larger mixed media spread with maps which will have to be photographed since it’s too big for the scanner.
Today I worked on the 1+1+1 challenge. That needs a few finishing touches and to be photographed also.
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Open virtues — not always easy!

I’ve been using the Virtues project cards to pick a virtue for each day and week. Out of 100 virtues, the 11 in the lower drawing appealed to me as being open and expansive — others are self-discipline, perseverance, orderliness, which are more of a struggle for me. But even the “open” or right-brain virtues don’t equate to a free pass to goof off. I found it remarkably hard, even depressing, the first time I pulled the joyfulness card. I felt guilty that I’m not more appreciative of the truly great things I have in my life, and guilty that I’m not more on top of things so that I could afford to relax and be joyful.

This may all sound very New Age-ish, but really it isn’t. The author of A Pace of Grace, who started the Virtues Project with her husband and brother, takes care to relate her thinking to various faith traditions. I pick a virtue each day for that day, and it is remarkable how they relate to what is going on in my life. And they are all virtues, so practising any one of them couldn’t be harmful.

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Distrust Straight Borders!

This is an imaginary colonized continent whose rulers have been busy ruling by drawing straight lines with no understanding of what is on the ground, where the rivers run, which groups live where, whether travel is possible. Maps with too many straight lines should not be trusted; those who ruled the lines are imposing themselves on the land.

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Visual Chronicles

Have been reading “Visual Chronicles” and working through some of the exercises, not very systematically.
This collage expresses how I feel today.
For a variety of reasons.
Now I’m thinking about the expression “Huis Clos” which is a legal term in French and was also the title of a Sartre play and I can’t remember what it was called in English.
Considering energy and frustration levels it’s amazing I can do anything remotely creative!
Better backgrounds are in the future…
I’m proud of the illuminated capital and the floaty moth like infinity symbol on the table created by playing around with twisted brush.