Archive for the ‘Misc Interests’ Category

Don’t Piece in Progress

Sunday, July 26th, 2015

I started the Don’t piece after watching Blink one of my favorite episodes of Doctor Who. The episode introduces the Weeping Angels, sculpture that isn’t really sculpture. When you blink or look away the Weeping Angels move. When they move they are dangerous.

In the episode Weeping Angels also known as the Lonely Assasins are explained:

“You die in the past, and in the present, they consume the energy of all of the days you might have had-and your stolen moments. They live off potential energy.”

What if you approached viewing art in the same way? Well, not with the fear that you might be sent back in time to die, but to really look. To see what is there, you must look. Not give the art work a passing glance, but really look at it. What about being a version of the Weeping Angels by snagging some of the energy put into the work by the artist…

I started a piece that has coded into it, “Don’t turn your back, Don’t look away, Don’t blink” some of the warnings in the episode.


I used color for the dots and dashes of Morse Code–rust yarn for dots, gray for dashes, and cream for spacers.

I cut the squares of mirror in half because after wrapping the hardware cloth with cream wool they were too large. And I like the idea of sharp edges.

Dont Code Detail

The frame will be bound to the coded piece. Actually the frame has code as well. The frame has the repeated word, see.

Dont Frame

The plan is to age and wax the coded piece and the frame. Then bind the two pieces together and the binding.

Dont With Frame

Wool and Safety Pins

Sunday, July 26th, 2015

What happens when you find a stash of safety pins? What do you do with them?

Safety Pins

Had just make a rope and wool yarn bowl for a birthday present.

Birthday Bowl

I enjoyed making the bowl. A nice break from making wall pieces. I wrapped rope with cream wool yarn so the cotton rope would not peek through.

Formed the bowl by binding it with cream wool. Added additional binding in cream, gray, and brown. It is code for the person’s name and their date of birth.

Back to the safety pins–I decided to make I-cords, full them, and then pin them together to make a bowl. I pinned the cream wool I-cord together and took it apart 3 times. Just couldn’t get it quite right.

Cream Bowl

While I was working on putting the cream bowl together and taking it apart, I made two smaller pieces.

The I-cord is made of gray and cream wool yarn.

Gray Bowl

The exterior of the bowl.

Gray Bowl

Then I flipped it inside out.

Gray Bowl

I tried the same process using two kinds of brown wool yarn.

Brown Bowl

Exterior of the bowl.

Brown Bowl

Flipped inside out.

Brown Bowl

Flipping the bowl inside out was the solution. After finishing the pinning of the cream bowl, I flipped it inside out.

Cream Bowl

Once the bowl is aged and then stiffened I think it will be done.

How to age the bowls?

Test 1 Rust Promoter
4.0 parts white vinegar
1.0 part peroxide
.5 part salt

Test 1

Test 2
1 Tablespoon epsom salt in boiling water. Submerged the piece. Then added another tablespoon of epsom salt.

Test 2

This really did not work. It seems to have cleaned the oxidation off of the safety pins. The result brought to mind the ugly surface of silicon bronze when it is sandblasted.

Test 2

Rust and bleeding onto the wool is definitely necessary.

When I finish adding some age to the bowls, I will most likely add an application of faux beeswax. Adding an all over application tends to help integrate the materials.

After the wax is applied a heat gun can be used. With some wax a hair dryer can be hot enough. It takes longer but, it is worth it to keep the integrity of the wool. I have found that microcrystalline wax requires a higher temperature and the wool can appear plastic.

I have attempted making cold wax, but still need to heat the piece to smooth out thick areas.

Rust Promoter Formula

It occurred to me that I did not give credit to the person who posted the rust promoter formula. I found the formula several years ago. I looked through my notes and sketchbooks, but I could not find reference to the formula or the fellow’s name. He made beautiful bells and used the rust promoter to give the appearance of age.

While writing this post, I googled bells and rust promoter, but did not find his site. When I find it, I will post a link.

Focaccia Mold

Sunday, July 26th, 2015

Apparently my focaccia with basil and black grapes do not go over well.

But what beautiful mold!

Focaccia Mold

Brain Injury and Donation

Wednesday, January 21st, 2015

Yesterday The Fussy Librarian and BookGorilla had an offer for a book written by a person who wrote about their brain aneurysm experience. I read the chapters posted on Amazon. Then I read the reviews. One reviewer recommended My Stroke of Insight: A Brain Scientist’s Personal Journey. Jill Bolte Taylor, Ph.D. is the author.

The first person I knew who had a brain injury was my nephew. He was 18 months old and while in a diabetic coma sustained brain damage. The second person was a woman I worked with who had a brain aneurysm. Members of my family have been diagnosed with dementia. Whether it is an unexpected injury or the gradual loss of function with dementia, brain injury does change the person. Their family and friends are altered by the injury as well.

Last night I started reading Jill Bolte Taylor’s book, My Stroke of Insight: A Brain Scientist’s Personal Journey. In the introduction she stated,

Within four brief hours, through the eyes of a curious brain anatomist (neuroanatomist), I watched my mind completely deteriorate in its ability to process information. By the end of that morning, I could not walk, talk, read, write, or recall any of my life.

That scares the hell out of me. The thought that people can be aware, but not to be able to do anything about it.

Scientists are researching how brain injuries occur, how to reduce the effects of the injuries, how to treat the injuries, and perhaps even how to prevent them. Brain donation, as part of organ donation, gives scientists the material they need to conduct their research.

In an interview with Jill Bolte Taylor, she was quoted as saying that when one becomes an organ donor the brain is not included. Special arrangements need to be made. The Harvard Brain Tissue Resource Center was mentioned in the interview.

There is a list of brain and tissue banks available on the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke website.

Two members of my family donated their brains for research–one was for dementia, the other was for restless legs syndrome.

Spiders and Spiders

Saturday, September 6th, 2014

Not Dust on the Wall

The spiders have burst from their egg sac.

Spiders and Egg Sac

Spiders and Spiders

Previous Post on the Green Lynx Spider

My New Bag

Tuesday, August 19th, 2014

I have been looking for a small everyday bag (that is not leather) for a few years. I found this one yesterday at an Avila Beach shop.

The bag is the perfect size for my wallet, phone, lip balm, notepad, and pencil. I am using my small wallet that I actually bought for my husband at
The Vegan Collection.

The bag can be found on the Roxy site or a bunch of other places like eBags.

My New Bag

I like that it brings to mind the Bargello Needlework.

I have been dinking around with some Bargello patterns.

Bargello Detail

I laid in the code layer under the cream Bargello pattern. One color represents the dots, one the dashes, and the third the spaces between letters and words.

Not a Hummingbird

Friday, April 11th, 2014

Last night my family called for me to come and see the really small hummingbird in the courtyard.

Yeah, not a hummingbird. It was a Sphinx Moth. How did I know this? A few years back my neighbor gave me a dead moth he found on one of his potted plants. It was a Sphinx Moth. And then I found one in my garden. Again not alive. I placed them in tins and they are resting here–

Sphinx Moths in Tins

I tried to get a photo of the one in the garden. Unfortunately, the photos were all very blurry. This is the best one.

Sphinx Moth

I found this great image taken by Raymond Christensen and posted on Butterflies and Moths of North America.

Christensen Sphinx Moth Photo

Some Information on Sphinx Moths
United States Department of Agriculture Forest Service

Colorado State University Extension

North American Moth Photographers Group (Gorgeous Photographs)

Plum Pie and Fiber Trivet

Sunday, August 11th, 2013

My niece (who will be staring 6th grade) taught me how to make a pie crust. I do not know if it is all of the years wedging clay, but every time I attempted to make a pie the crust was a huge disappointment. This is the result of the lesson.


The plums were from the tree in our orchard. My niece used the snowflake cookie cutters I impulsively bought last Christmas in Maryland.

We decided to share the pie with our friends who recently relocated from Washington. While we were there I saw this amazing trivet.


I love white on white–embroidered shirts and linens, knot work, woven work… The trivet is thick and the knots while not physically connected appear as diagonals. Simple, yet effective way to make a pattern.

Trivet Detail

Planning to give the technique a go and if it feels right, the pattern may show up in some of my work.

Forgotten Peaches Update

Wednesday, July 10th, 2013

June 7


July 7




According to the grower I met at the Farmers’ Market, I soon will have viable material for planting. Planning to give it a try even though there is a great distance from seed to tree to fruit.

Transformation of Forgotten Peaches

Wednesday, June 26th, 2013

Well, maybe only forgotten until the 7th of June. The peach grower mentioned that if I am patient, the pits can become trees.

June 07
Peaches 20130607

June 09
Peaches 20130609

June 15
Peaches 20130615

June 24
Peaches 20130624