Lisa's Musings

there's little i control



gocco maddness, originally uploaded by dressform.

my dining room table has been work station central for the last couple weeks. the last week super intensely. that's the holiday card getting printed.... i was too far into it when i decided that i was a bit loopey for doing the 2 color/2 pass card + printed envelope.... so it goes. at least i'm not punching out little red noses and gluing them down one by one this year. :)

this morning i tested out my commute for the spring semester. i had to fill out some paper work and thus i attempted to get to my new place of employment by 9am. i am going to have to get really zen in my car. over an hour folks. and it should take 30 mins. tops. playlist suggestions welcome! [maybe i should get books??]. and i'm going to have to leave my house at a tad after 7am. [remember i'm not a morning person]. can i change my biological clock? jan-may 2007 will be an experiment! i am also going to be teaching at CSU [where i currently am]... one class... also earling morning. so i'll have afternoons free. i like this idea.

so... shari and abee both asked what i was listening to while i was installing [and BTW - THANK YOU so much for your enthusiasm about the installation! i am already semi scheming the next one.... fingers crossed]. pretty much all women singers... jenny lewis, neko case, pj harvey, cat power, billie holiday.... over and over - entire albums... need the continuity. every once and awhile i threw in johnny cash, or jets to brazil, or the evens....and one morning i went with an old spoon record [i needed to wake up]. sometimes i even listened to things twice in a row. it's sort of one of those things where if the music is working you don't want to change the mood. it's hard to describe my state of mind when i'm painting on the wall. i only make a few marks to help me figure out size and distance and then i have to just go for it. i can't be too present because if i overthink it it comes out crappy.... but i can't be off in never never land either.... i think this is the balancing act that creative folks have been trying to put into words for eons. i'm sure someone has done it a million times more eloquently than me!

two things to note: alicia's post... i'll second stephanie's amen {and did you SEE her button wreath? sigh}

AND blair's post.... that quote. i need to burn it into my mind... [wait - does that make 3 things?]

vintage beads make good earrings

i think this is my last post until post [i just stupidly made myself laugh... how many times can you use the different inclinations of the word "post" in a sentence?] the gloggy sale on saturday. i found this great couple strands of czech beads.... so the above earrings got made. there are a few i was able to make several of - so all leftovers [and i'm sure there will be leftovers] will show up in the shop . i still have mounds of stuff to attend to... so if you are wondering what i am doing... think tagging.... pricing.... tagging... tying string.... if you are local... come by.... you already know shash and you might get lucky and spy lisa or mati -- who aren't selling - but will be visiting! woo hoo!

and just because... here's matilda!

tilda by the fire
do you think she loves our fireplace??

cute matilda
can't help it, right??

wall work ~ lily pond doily -  front

hello friends.... it's finally time for me to show the pics of my latest installation : wall work :: lily pond doily : that took place at the the richmond art center .

but before i talk more about the piece two things [that i'm really tickled about] ::

1. i was recently interviewed for what you make it . specifically about this piece... some of you already know about this, but if you don't and are interested... check it out. the other artists { Betsy Greer, filipa , the small object , bang , and julianna swaney } featured in this issue are AMAZING. so it's totally an honor to be a part of this.

2. shari also interviewed me for her handmade for the holidays series. today she also featured ash and abigail . again i couldn't be MORE honored. be sure and check out the next batch of creative folks interviewed too. shari really asked great questions and i can't wait to read all the other responses. thank you shari!!!

it's REALLY hard to show this installation in photos because of a few things. 1. much of the paint i used contained some interference... so there were parts that shimmered and sparkled in the light.... can't really photograph that.... 2. the piece really needs to be lit properly - the shadows that the doilies cast are a HUGE component of the piece - unfortunately, though, it's really too hard to photograph the piece in that lighting.... so imagine those, OK?

i was pretty much given carte blanche with this installation which is always great. i asked for a wall in the middle of the space as well as a floor platform. i really wanted to have this start on the floor and go up, over and around my 10 foot by 6 foot by 6 inch wall. it's really different to see this installation almost as a free standing sculpture. i also wanted to use a much more subdued palette than the pink and red of the last installation. i thought this would play more into the whole "snowflake" association.

this doily is a lilly pond doily - the pattern suggested using this doily for a tablecloth. somehow dis-engaging the doily from it's original purpose and "monumentalizing" it in this fashion really gets me excited.

here's the back:
wall work ~ lily pond doily  - back

you can see the whole set of photos with details of the sides and parts of the process here

there's also a little movie you can watch of me painting one of the doilies. [this opens up in a new window and you can't click out of bloglines or a reader to see it. you have to visit my blog to get this to work. it's also available from the home page of my website.]

i also just found out today from jen that the free people blog talked about my work today. wow! thanks!!

if anyone would like to know more about this piece i'd be happy to answer any questions.... hope your weeks are starting off well!!

dog love

yesterday was a good day.

lisa c came over. my dogs L.O.V.E. her [who doesn't?]. i love that she lets garbo kiss her. it's not very often that the one eyed pitbull gets the love she deserves!!

lunch
we had lunch

lisa c walks
we went to the goodwill, we went to target . where we each got sucked into buying a feather tree [we got green]

but i have to say... the highlight of the day was our visit to this amazing button store

button heaven

we have been sworn to secrecy on the location of this button heaven.... but let me just say that they have buttons from the 20's through the 70's ... on perfect cards... in drawers and drawers.... and as the very nice woman who runs the store said: none of these buttons are plastic. plastic buttons don't last you know.... these are composite buttons.... and if you come back we'll have different kinds because our house is full of them.

gulp. if you have a button request i'd be happy to see if i can fufill it! just let me know color/size/shape/creed. most likely they'll have it. but don't ask me where it is. because i can't tell you. lisa will kill me. heh heh.

all i can say is - i feel very very lucky to spend a day with someone so genuine, so creative, so full of life. she has a contageous smile... and i loved hearing about what she has planned for some upcoming shows. very exciting indeed gracia is working on a time machine.... do you think, dear, you could also work on a teleporter? how much fun would it be to hang out w/ all our blogger friends from around the world? a big old grand tea....

in other news:

* finished history of love.... if you have too head over to ship of fools to post your reaction. and to weigh in on what to read next

* enjoying mail from talented photographers:

from mav
the lovely mav

from simply photo
from the amazing talented jen
who also now has a blog !! have you visited it yet??

from maditi
and from maditi ! i coveted the poster... and now i have one + two lovely prints. i so want to get to my room in my house so i can put it up. [the room that is going to be all mine - the craft room... that room is going to have the most amazing art!!] she has a shop too if you haven't been to it yet.

hope you are all enjoying your holiday weekend. i will finally post pics from my richmond art center show next week... [between getting ready for the crafty sale on the 2nd!!]


happy thanksgiving, originally uploaded by dressform.

can't help but think about things that make you thankful.... [even if this is sort of an odd holiday really]... small, medium, and large things.... in the last few days these have all crossed my mind as things to be grateful for {thanks to amy for the list idea}

pink toes :: cranberries :: E6000 glue :: pink tinged clouds at sunset :: sewing machines :: felt :: gutermann thread :: paint chips :: email :: warm baths :: hair cuts and hair dye :: a little extra sleep :: 3 chord songs that make you want to sing along :: students that want to take more classes with you :: striped socks :: cars that work :: some $ in the bank :: a lovely roof over my head :: nights by a fire :: persimmons :: friends that live both near and far :: family that can bring tears of joy to my eyes :: not having to cook thanksgiving dinner this year :: not yet hearing a single note of a christmas carol in a store :: deep breaths :: lattes :: blue suede boots [and dreams about expensive shoes] :: dogs in my studio

and YOU. all of you. you who write amazing inspiring posts constantly. you who leave incredibly kind, positive, thoughtful comments here.... or on flickr... you who send me links, songs, and ideas when they cross your mind.... you who make me think, you who participate in my life just by coming to read or by linking here [even if i don't know who you are or you never make a peep]. you all know who you are.... i know you do.

happy thanksgiving to all those in the states! and to the rest of you around the world... have a lovely lovely thursday ! if i could send you a little bit of cranberry sauce... i would. yum!


looking, originally uploaded by dressform.

EDIT :: it was brought to my attention that you can't click out of bloglines to see the install shots of the show.... you have to visit the post physically on my blog... and then it works... so FYI

that was the title of the show that wendy kawabata and i came up with. above is my dad and grandmother looking at my work.

this was one of those really great show experiences. the kind that make you wish that all shows could go like this. first of all the people who teach/work in the art departement down at mira costa are incredibly friendly and helpful and interested [they asked great questions]. remember how my box was magled by Fed-Ex? someone made me NEW FRAMES.... so i got there and didn't have to re-frame stuff.... wow. plus it was the first time that i showed several bodies of my work simultaneously....it was really cool to see how the pieces connected to one another.....

wendy kawabata
wendy's piece bloodlines

i also think that some larger force [kismet] was at work in bringing wendy and myself together. i knew i'd like her after seeing a few images of her work and our email exchanges back and forth.... but i didn't realize how precisely our interests and aesthetics would collide, intersect, and converse with one another. she is a caucasian woman who has taken her 1/2 japanese husband's name. i am a 1/2 japanese woman who's name doesn't reflect that. she is really thinking about her 3 year old son and how to bring him up in a world where his cultural identity is somewhat in flux. i am living that life. she is living in hawaii where she is re-examining her colonialist roots.... i often dream of what it'd be like to be in hawaii - the only place i've ever been where people thought i came from the village down the road - not some exotic country or undiscernable ethnic bloodline.

the point of loose ends

we had to give a talk about our work 3 times. by the third time we were both a bit punchy. it is REALLY hard to figure out what to say that 3rd time out. even if you fundamentally realize that the audience hasn't heard it all before, i just could not say the exact same thing. luckily we were able to steer the 3rd round and asked for more questions from the students.... and we did it in more of a free flow.... the first 2 talks we went one at a time. the last one we interrupted one another and went back and forth between thoughts and our works.

the point of loose ends

for the first 2 talks my family was there. luckily the room was full enough that the addition of my mother, and father and grandmother didn't add to my nerves. :) it was actually really great to be able to talk about the blanket piece and then point to my grandmother and say : that's HER voice! one of the faculty asked my parents to say something during the 2nd talk and i was so incredibly moved by what they said. i am so so lucky to have the support of my family. even though they might not always understand what it is to live the life of an artist, they are there for me in every way shape and form. their warmth and concern and pride for me is something almost indescribable. plus my dad pointed out a thread between us - his anti-violence/war philosophy and my work with the tanks and targets... i honestly didn't even make that connection.... and it's been staring me in the face!

if you'd like to see more install shots [and some details of some pieces]:: click here

and if you'd like some art stuff to chew on..... wendy brought something up that i've been rolling around in my brain. part of what i love about our works together is that they both fundamentally are relying on the act of drawing. mark-making. and we both like to use non-traditional materials to do this. she mentioned that she sees the act of drawing in 4 potential approaches ::

1. draw what you see - something right in front of you
2. draw from memory - something that you once saw, but you no longer have a reference to
3. draw from imagination - something you've never seen. ever.
4. drawing as appropration - using other materials/ideas/visuals as source materials....

well... there went my idea for shorter posts i guess.....

if you haven't already seen.... mav and grace both have gift guides.... and i'm super honored to have underdog stuff featured on mav's .... along with SO MANY TALENTED people i love and admire.... and poppytalk has an amazing holiday card guide.... tis the season, no??? BUY from small business.... buy from artists! why not??

and lest you think i did nothing else in southern calif

come aboard
i did manage a few photos.... check all of them out here. the light is definitely different down there....more soon!


underdog :: fall/winter 06, originally uploaded by dressform.

i can't believe it's almost a week since i've posted anything. it's been a whirlwind of activity over in my corner of the world.

i WILL talk more about my trip - just not today. i actually still need a few days to finish formulating some of my thoughts [not to mention just download the images from my camera - it's been that kind of week here folks]

so..... in no particular order, but all of importance in some way shape and form:

1. new stuff available at underdog ink . some of you know this already b/c you signed up for the email list.... so if you want to be the first to know you know what to do :) ! amazingly enough one of the holiday cards is already sold out [wow! how did that happen?!] - but there's plenty of stuff left.... and i actually plan on adding stuff a few more times between now and the frenzy of the holidays to come. i'll post about updates here.... i don't want to keep sending out mass emails - well... maybe one more

2. speaking of the holidays i will be participating in a couple of sales with the above stuff. if you are local i'd love for you to come buy and say hello [and buy handmade - not just from me but from other amazing and talented artists - like shash!! . the info on any sale that i'm participating in is available on the events page of the underdog site. woo hoo! i bought a very special foldable camping table that i'm very excited to test out [yes.... i get excited by things like this]

3.
from wendy :: kokeshi
this lovely lady is mine all mine.... the incredibly talented wendy sent her to me. if you are lucky enough to catch wendy and her work at bazaar bizzare... you should!

4.
beautiful use

i participated in beautiful use organized by the lovely kelly . the above 5 senses [ shari!!! ] package was sent to me by reva . everything about this package was perfect... the fabric for my needle holder [will be put to good use!] the wrapping.... the lavender scent... and her photo is gorgeous! you should definitely check out her blog - she has a great sensibility. thank you reva!!

5. i was asked by renee if i wanted to participate in a blanket project she cooked up. the premise is to buy cool space age blankets for homeless folks since winter fast approaches. thank goodness for cool organized people who are willing to do things like this! if you want to join in check out her post about it... and leave her a comment there !

6. on no wait... not 6.... thanks for making it through this post... i'll try to do more frequent and shorter posts [really i will try]. i have been keeping up w/ most your blogs, but flickr is a lost cause.... hopefully soon. is it just me or does life speed up come november?? um... happy almost friday?!?!?! [friday!! oy vey!] which means check out ash's book club post!

p/s from matilda : hello everyone!!! thank you for all your kind hellos.... i wish you could all pet me!! mama has been spending some of her computer time playing with me.... pppuuuurrrrr


meet matilda, originally uploaded by dressform.

hello world.... i'm matilda!

came home the other night to this! hubby is so sly. matilda was dumped by some people in the parking lot of his work [i guess people think that since it's an animal facility they will take care of any animal that gets dumped - hello? SPCA... really they won't even make you sign anything if you don't want to!]. a co-worker found her at 5am and coaxed her out [i guess there was a whole litter, but all the other kittens were taken by the emergency clinic across the way]. with-in a couple of hours she was purring and rubbing into everyone.

instead of calling me [because he knew i'd say: we don't need another cat] he brought her home. and of course i can't kick her out now.... she's a sweetie... and it's so funny to have a loppy kitten in the house again. running around falling off of tables and then curling up under our chins to sleep and purr. she's still a bit hissy around the dogs, but i think she's going to fit in just fine..... wanna know the weird part?? hubby and i were talking about should we or should we not get another kitty... and i said... i'd love a gray kitty. he said you can't pick a cat based on looks - i said - i know but i'm just saying i think all gray kitties are so cute.... um.... i guess someone heard me??

today was insane... packed 3 suitcases full of artwork... packed my own suitcase full of clothes... did the dishes.... crossed T's and dotted I's.... how come when you are going somewhere - even if it's just for a few days - a whole series of hoops must be jumped?

i leave pretty early tomorrow... hopefully i will get me and all my bags to where they are supposed to be in one piece. i don't even want to talk about the fed-ex nightmare that busted through my box and broke several frames. apparently only one piece is minorly damaged. i hope that's true. i usually really love fed-ex - and i have to admit when i called to file a claim the woman sounded genuinely sorry. that was sweet. i saw a picture, though, and it's like they rammed a midieval sword through the top 1/3 and then taped over it like nothing happened. luckily the incredilby nice folks at the venue fixed 2 of the frames and bought new plexi for me... huge relief!

anyway.... if you are in the Oceanside/San Diego area my show with Wendy Kawabata will open on Monday the 13th [yes weird] from 11-2 pm at the Kruglak gallery at Mira Costa College . we have to give a talk too [gulp]. come by if you are so inclined! [or if you want to hear me babbly the art talk about what i make and why]

i'm excited because my mom, dad and grandma are coming! woo hoo....

i have some other news to share, but it will have to wait until i get back....

don't forget shari has posted on ship of fools .... i have to get over there and comment....

will leave you with a pic of tired tired kitty
sleepy matilda

do you see her cute pink toes??? pppppuuuuurrrrrr


from ashb, originally uploaded by dressform.

from my bloggy friends....

i can't believe it - but i have MORE mail to show you... and honestly i can say that the kindness of you blog friends has kept me going these last few weeks. often at my wits end i would return home to find a box.... sometimes i'd wait until after dinner to open them so i could savor the contents.... i feel spoiled, pampered and loved..... and it's not just the physical objects you send, but the words and the thoughts too. there is such an understanding here... blair was just talking about it.... it's overwhelming. so i can't say it enough.... THANK YOU all so much.....

above was my amazing package from a very sly fox . i am so happy to have met you dear ashb.... and even happier that we share in the bookclub ! i am wearing that scarf tomorrow even if it's 80 degrees out! the fabrics are so good!!

but wait... there's more [remember ginzu knives?]
my most favorite bug sent me a rhapsody in green. she knew i was going away this weekend and knows i love green... and since she is always so well coordinated..... she sent:

jet  setter in green
do you SEE the tonka bag? no really - do you SEE THAT??

inside the luggage:
in the luggage
go ahead and roll your eyes alicia it's another coat for my collection. but amazingly the train case came w/ all the original packaging... the little purse... the shower cap!! the keys!! wow

and be careful what you say around her - i joked all i needed were vintage green glasses and these showed up:
piece d'resistance

sigh.... will i not be the coolest traveller ever?

and because in another life i WAS an artist... oh wait... i still am, right? i mean i'm installing that show at mira costa college this weekend.... here's a piece that made it's journey safe and sound.... i hope to get back into the blogging stride this week.... i actually have news to report... things to share.....

a  bed dreams

happy hump day!


from joy, originally uploaded by dressform.

no - i'm not morphing into martha stewart, but i do have some nice treats from fabulous people to share.... joy sent over the above cute treats ! i don't think i'll ever tire of good mail.

AND.... from the fabulous blair who will be at studio craft along with the amazingly talented portland blog contingent i got....

from blair

AND

my very own wisecraft purse!!

blair - i will gladly be your personal thrift shopper ANY day for treats like these!!

don't forget that today is book club day....

and i want to leave you with a link ... found via photojojo :: atelier :: making funny/cool objects out of the ordinary. personally i love 30 , 27, and 25

gotta run... way way too much to do! i'll leave you with a polaroid {speaking of polaroids - have you seen anne's ?}

poppy pods_corner light
have a great weekend!!

west wall :: studio

because it's been a long long while.... here's a corner pic..... this corner is in my studio. those are old old paintings of mine. what normally lives in that space is the wire blanket which has been gone and thus we filled the space with my old paintings. i know i made them, but somehow i feel almost disconnected from them now. as if another part of me made those. one that no longer exists. many more corners here . and corners started by the lovely amanda who is has been furiously writing a BOOK!! so very exciting!!

i have spent the last 5 or 6 days with our very special visitor. mr. hugh. he wanted to come back to the Bay Area to see some of his old haunts. he went to UC Bekeley in the 1930's. he has a recollection of prohibition.... he bought is first house in the oakland hills for $2500. $50 down and $25 a month. his best friend then was joe miner .... who met his wife when he and hugh lived together in a duplex on dwight way. he spent a lot of time at george hume's mansion house with a big balcony off the north gate [he had a fantastically gorgeous wife] - at the hume's was a 5 gallon glass jug [like water bottle] of gin that was free for the taking. hugh was naughty at times, but as a southern gentleman he seemed to be able to charm his way out of any real problems or danger. his friends... dick - the chess player w/ an IQ of over 180 - his mom was sweet and gentle. he died young in a car crash. calvin - his buddy from the japanese interment camps [he worked for the government for a spell and spent some time organizing those camps. regretable... but he said he met some fantastic people - even if the circumstances were not so great] who got pneumonia and died... hazel in SF that gave him a spare key to her apt [oh racey!].

he knows his mind isn't the same as it used to be and this frustrates him to no end. it is hard to watch a proud person struggle with buttoning a coat or dropping a napkin. but when there were those moments of pure clarity and lucidity he spoke of those he knew and loved you couldn't help but be captivated. it is my hope to be remembered like that by someone, somewhere, sometime. to hold on to the ones i know and love like that. because in the small details those people are still alive. and now that we know these stories hugh does not have to be the last one standing... the one to make sure joe, and george and calvin are not forgotten.

i must admit, though, that i'm downright exhausted. in the midst of this was my drawing class' first critique.... futile attempts to stay on top of a wholesale order and a website that needs to be built, and one that should be updated.... i did manage to get 3 boxes to fed-ex tonight... off to the next and probably last art show of the year for me....

i leave you with some photos of the last few days.... soon to come are some thank yous... i've been getting some amazing mail lately ! and updates galore to numerous things... and catching up.... what have you all been up to lately??

see wheeler
in front of wheeler hall

knotty tree
can't forget to look up

luck
i think we all can use some luck
happy thursday!


My Photo
Name: lisa s
Location: oakland, CA, United States

hello and welcome to my blog. i'm a mixed media artist living in oakland, CA with my husband, 2 dogs, 1 cat and my baby daughter. i try to post once a week about things that inspire me, what's going on in my studio, and little tidbits of my life. thanks for visiting, reading and commenting!



please please please :: i am happy to have you use an image of mine on your blog or somewhere else, but PLEASE just ask permission before you do. and please don't hot link. it really is important that we respect one another and the work we do. and if you are too shy or busy to ask, could you at least link back to me? thank you in advance!



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