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2012 Photo Challenge

whoops? I am so far behind in posting photos, I don’t even think I can be bothered to play catch up posting them all. So I think I will just make a couple posts of the highlights so far, and continue on as per usual.

Let’s start with some art. In fact, let’s start with the book I’m doing the art in. WHICH I MADE ALL BY MYSELF (plus this wonderful, fantastic YouTube tutorial).

boom! my first hand bound book!!! I went with a coptic stitch because 1) it’s easy, 2) I love the exposed spine look, and 3) it always lays flat when opened . I also left the covers plain because I was in too much of a hurry to start binding, I didn’t want to wait to decorate them haha. the yellow thread was the best choice, too, it’s so cheery! color of the year!!

first session in my brand spankin’ new art journal. inspiration came fast and hard from a spread by Frances Pickering (www.frannyp.co.uk/galleries_1.php), and this is what happened. this isn’t the first time I’ve ever embroidered into paper, but the first time I’ve used it so directly into the design. it was more of an experiment that went really well, and I will definitely be doing it again. I’m glad I didn’t get rid of all that cotton embroidery thread I had from when I was younger and used to make bracelets out of. without it I couldn’t have made this book, and I guess I know what I’ll be doing with the rest of it, too!

above: collage from an article out of the January1994 issue of National Geographic. I saw the article and really couldn’t resist.

below: the start of another collage that transformed into a background. I haven’t finished it yet, but I know what I’m going to do; now it’s just a matter of finding the right image.

I haven’t drawn or even sketched in so long it’s almost ridiculous. sitting down to fill in this guy felt great!

the blackout poem on the right is from quite a while ago. it was a page I ripped out of a previous art journal, but then I started reading it and this happened. I couldn’t bear to throw it away, but I didn’t know what to do with it, so I kept it in a folder for a few months. it’s been floating loose around my room for a couple of weeks, and today I knew exactly what to do with it. see ma! being a packrat isn’t so bad all the time!!! sometimes stuff is useless, sometimes stuff makes a person sit down for the first time in almost a year to sketch the first man she’s ever sketched. sometimes, good things really do come from stuff.

the text reads:

a mysterious figure

A tall, intense looking man, with burning eyes, he was as thin as death and seemed worried and tense.

She looked at him now, and he caught her eye. Suddenly, she remembered seeing his photograph in the newspapers.

He looked like a man who had been through hell.

“The whole world has been wondering what happened to you.”

“I have escaed,” he said simply.

That was ominous; it sounded as if the Nazis might still be after him.

A bitter expression cam over his face.

“I did not want to leave my country. But if I had stayed, my work might have contributed to a Nazi victory.”

Her dilemma was resolved.

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Blumen Blumen Blumen. Immer weider schaue ich die Blumen an. I am just so aware of the flowers this year, and I don’t know why. Es regnet weiter, und die Welt explodiert in grün und lila und gelb.

A few weeks ago my local library had a viewing of art made by high school students from the district. There was some really amazing stuff there, and I had to snap some pictures of my favorite pieces. Some of this stuff is crazy good! And let me tell you, if I had a disposable income, I seriously would have bought that vase; it was so gorgeous.

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left: “Another War to Fight” by C Mueller, grade 10; ceramic.
right: “Raku Vase” by N Martell, grade 12; ceramic.

top left: Untitled by A Thaemert, grade 11; colored pencil.
bottom left: “Night Song” by A Thaemert; colored pencil and charcoal.
right: “Man of Wire” by T Cofield, grade 12; sculpture.

“never let me go” by P Bovits, grade 10; oil painting.

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Lembas bread! Really, it’s somewhere between a Southern style biscuit and an English scone.

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I can’t stop looking at all the flowers and trees and general green. Winter seemed so long, despite being so mild. Now that the weather is warming up and everything is coming back to green, I feel like I’m waking up from a big sleep. I feel the same every spring, but this one in particular is somehow more intense. I just hope that summer is as long as winter was mild.

The last picture is typical kitty. She constantly wants to be outside, but if a car drives by, or a dog barks…or a bird flies too close…she’s right back at the door begging to be let in until the bird has flown away danger has passed. Silly.

So the real reason I haven’t been blogging is simple, and not very nice. It starts with the first photo.

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April 17, 2012. The day we lost Uncle Don.

It’s been almost a month now. A whole month of not wanting to blog about it, not wanting to look at the pictures from the funeral, not wanting to relive it so soon.

April 18. I took a walk. Listened to a great album once or twice. Looked at everything. Saw old things…

…and new things…

…and gone-in-a-heartbeat things.

Took a lot of deep breaths.

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Took a nap.

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April 20 and 21, wake and funeral.

Sad or not, let it be said that our family can laugh and celebrate a life well lived, and a man well loved.

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The last time I saw Uncle Don was at Great Grandma’s funeral. I caught him just before he got in his truck, and I gave him a hug and a kiss and an “I love you”, and off he went.

Still love you, Bumpa. Requiescat in pace et in amore.