Lisa's Musings

there's little i control

underdog ink :: new jewels

it seems like there is a lot going on this week....
mav has some new stuff cooking on the press ....
sally opens her shop tomorrow! ...
martha has an update planned too ...
shanna has a new home ...
lisa and stephanie have a show at doe on friday night {and stephanie sadly says good-bye... we'll miss you!} ...
jenny's new line just launched on modishoppe

i've been playing with beads. i actually made all the above a while back, but couldn't manage to update underdog until recently. there's all the new jewels above, tree notes, and spring style shirts are re-stocked {there's also a couple new color combos}. baby rhino T's are also re-stocked. so if you are looking for a mother's day gift... well - there's a lot out there, no? [not that you have to buy from me - but support small artists if you can!] all bloggy friends get free first class shipping from me! i'll either refund your paypal account or email me for a separate invoice.

the documentary project is on shari's today.

enjoy the rest of your monday!

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cliffs :: wildwest

i'm going to go all over the place with this post....

ONE :: i really enjoyed all the responses to "collection". dawn shared some of her collections which was great. camilla has an art project that has to do with collections. it seems like many of us here in blogland have a penchant for them. i have a feeling this subject shall pop up again [aren't i supposed to show you all my rings?]

TWO :: above is one the last of my albuquerque pictures. [wow that seems like eons ago now]. the last day we were there we went to cliff's amusement park .

i have to say.... it kind of seemed like a west coast version of coney island . except for that it's the simulacra of it. [ok - if you haven't been subjected to baudrillard's simulacra theory - this will make no sense - but if you have....] does this make cliff's a double simulacra? of course you must first believe the suggestion that disneyland [all amusement parks] are simulacras - but i do subscribe to that notion. so then is cliff's a simulacra of a simulacra [can you say that 10 times fast?] is that like a DOUBLE NEGATIVE? i can't quite wrap my head around what that might mean, but it sounds all heady and philosophical no? for more coney island goodness you can see my photos from my visit there here . and you can see the lovely abee's drool worthy coney island materpieces here . then compare them to cliff's and see what you think.

THREE :: theoretical mishaps and meanderings seem to be all the rage with me the last few day. this is what happens to me when i don't get enough studio time. my mind goes on overdrive - i can't MAKE stuff so i THINK stuff. the entire gruelling commute this morning i was trying to be zen - to not get angry with the endless line of autos and the idiots that cut everyone off - and thus my mind started to race... i look for similarities in things - how things might relate to one another [oh that song has the word that shari and i are documenting this week!]. i make stupid geeky puns to myself that no one else would even smirk at. i wonder about the the farm bill and how we as a nation can continue to subgigate the poor to the worst possible food choices .

ok - enough talk? more pictures? i'm happy to oblidge.

cliffs :: yellowtable

cliffs :: gal[axy]


cliffs :: clown

cliffs :: eat

i think this one is one of my favorites from the trip.

ok. i gotta get back to work.... have a good thursday!

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this week's word chosen by shari

SHARI'S response

when i was a little girl, i collected stamps. this was in my eyes a true "hobby collection". it didn't last long. i just wasn't very interested in stamps but i've always enjoyed having some kind of collection. in college i began a teapot collection but have since given most of these away to friends or goodwill.

the latest in my mary jane shoe collection.

now, i have some smaller collections that i really treasure:
vintage tablecloths (preferably from the fifties)
heart shaped rocks
found paper for collages
tiny showcase art (but only by my favorite artists)
mary jane style shoes
optic nerve comic books
art made by blogger friends such as a p2p card collection, an underdog
ring collection, and a small collection of abigail percy jewelry.

just a few heart shaped rocks from my collection

music (cds and vinyl) + instruments (tom's collection)

what is it about collections? why do we have the urge to collect objects, images? i think my three biggest collections are my book, music, and photograph collection. i am really interested in the similarity in collecting material objects and collecting images via photography. in thinking about why we collect, i turned to alain de botton's the art of travel, he states, "a dominant impulse on encountering beauty is to wish to hold on to it, to possess it and give it weight in one's life." we collect what we love, what speaks to us in some way. we collect things that help define us.

teacups inside

my newest collection is a collection of handmade white tea/coffee cups. i have two by karin eriksson, one from white forest pottery , and one from diana fayt . i love that they are mismatched and i look forward to serving guests beverages in these beautiful, beautiful vessels. last night when i was asking tom to build a shelf for these cups, he asked if i was intending to have a four cup collection. i said no, i wanted one of paula's raku cups. so he said five then? and then i said six, a nice even number.

that's the trouble with collections. there's always room for just one more. :)

what do you collect and do your collections change?

one final note. see if you can name the band who wrote these lyrics:
"you've got a great collection of things cause that's the best you can do."

MY response

collection. i am a bonified pack rat. maybe i inherited this trait from my mother or my grandmother [or heck - maybe my grandfather. you should have seen the tin of miscellanios nails, screws, nuts, , washers i inherited from him]. i definitely didn't get it from my dad. he's of the if you don't use it throw it out or get rid of it philosophy. the anti-collector. sometimes i'm envious of this.

if i think back to the first collection that i was really ga-ga over as a kid [i also had a stamp collection which i liked, but didn't get deeply into] was STICKERS. how many photo albums did i have full of them? i liked the scratch and sniff kind, the rainbow kind, the sanrio kind, the foil kind, the puffy and soft ones. i pretty much liked them all. i loved trading my friends for the one i needed to round out my collection [oh little twin stars. i have none of those!!!].

{aside :: as we go along in this project i am more and more amazed at how shari and my lives intersect and cross over. the stamps, the mary janes [oh i have those too].... this happens every week!}

when shari picked this word i was a tinsy bit scared. do i really reveal all the different wacky collections i have? what will they in turn reveal about me? which are the most interesting? what do i have the most of? [clothes? shoes? bags? rings? and then there's the books, notions, vintage fans]. what actually constitutes a "collection"?

i pretty much concluded that you must have at least 2 of something for it to be a baby collection. over 10 and you are a "serious" collector. over 50 and my goodness... well... i'm a fan of obsessiveness so there will be no jugement here. there are some things that are life-long hunts, no? and there are some collections that we grow weary of and stop. i wonder what pushes those desires. [i once vicariously fell in love with a friend's collection of vintage typing ribbon tins. THANK GOODNESS i didn't actually get that bug - but it was close].

i think a big part of the fun of collections is the hunt for the objects. that moment of glee when you find something for a price that is unheard of [or is at least in your budget]... or where you find the one missing piece to your collection that you have been searching for.... there is something joyous about coveting... about wanting about dispalying things grouped together.

just for fun i did a search on the word collection on martha stewart's website . 315 entries. [granted not all relevant, but still].

so now i present to you some collections from my casa.

japanese craft books

if you are a long time reader of mine you've seen these before... my vintage bottle collection [large and small]

vintage lunch boxes [i had to stop at 3 as we have no room]

glass beakers

my mini jello tins

one of my favorites... nests.... [3 from my yard - one from grad school]

and risa asked me what i did with all my polaroids. they live in a metal box... like this

i can't believe i didn't even touch on the art... or the vinyl that my husband has... shari maybe we should devote two weeks to this word??


*update* i forgot to mention it ain't fittin' is on display through the 30th at the atlantic center for the arts in new smyrna beach, florida. renee also has a piece in the show! *end of update*

i have another couple of rounds of images from my trip. but before i get to those... i :: am :: glad :: to :: know i am not alone.

i was just writing to liz [who is working on the incredible crane project ] about how taking pictures has changed my point of view. i never would have thought in a million years that i would be this interested in photography. but i am. i never would have guessed at how profoundly looking through view finders would change what i notice in the world, or my field of vision. but... well there you have it.

if you are interested there's an attempt at a post by me over on ship . i am still feeling like words are not with me [they aren't against me either - they just aren't clammering around and putting themselves into pretty little packages].

jason's :: ahoy

jason's :: plant

jason's :: dogheart

jason's :: weeds

it's funny to see these all lined up... the tone is so similar.... happy weekend friends!

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ghost town

while in new mexico we went to madrid . it was a ghost town - abandoned when the mine ran out and the train stopped coming. it's been re-populated and is quite cute now... but remains of ghosts and lives past remain. i am naturally attracted to rust and the beauty in decay.

i really liked it there. i also fell in love with a shop. rock paper gallery. they don't have a website - but you can get a feel for the shop via some photos here . just precious items. both vintage and reproduction. i could have spent hours in there. i did buy some wooden bobbins which i love.... if i didn't have to get on a plane with one carry on bag i probably would have bought much more.

i still am feeling a bit quiet. the virginia tech tragedy has my head spinning. i've noticed as i walk around the campuses i work how really easy it is to gain access. and how very confining my classrooms really are. i don't want to be afraid. my heart goes out to those who have suffered and lost. it all seems so senseless.

more pictures from madrid.... i hope you have a pleasant thursday.

carnivals past

gold bond stamps

santa fe


happy monday! don't forget to check out the documentary project on shari's today.

this was the first time i took my polaroid camera with me on a trip. it was heavy, but worth it!

i'm not feeling like a wordsmith... so i'm just going to show you... these were all things that struck me in our friend jason's house....

jason's :: kissing dolls

jason's :: horse ashtray

jason's :: 50's lamp

jason's :: palm trees
the frame is amazing... so good

albuquerque :: leisure bowl
this is from the local bowling alley. it snowed one day we were there and so we had to find something to do indoors.

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Levy Gallery - install shot 8

i'm not sure where this week has gone. it just sort of went poof! i didn't get to participate in julie's week of color.... but had such a good time seeing everyones responses. sometimes photos speak volumes more than words could ever.

above is an install shot from the show at the richard levy gallery . i was so so so happy with how it turned out. i knew that they would do a good job as their vision is just so clear and lovely, but until you see something for yourself, you just never know, you know? kerri rosenstein and i had thought that it would be better to have our works sort of intermingle. her work and mine speak really well to one another. it was very clear that this was the work of two people and yet there were a few of her pieces i felt i could have made and visa versa. kerri was really a joy. i think she's coming through the bay area soon - so i'm hoping to spend a bit more time with her.

Levy Galelry - install shot 5

i was even OK with how the doilies on acetate looked. definitely not my favorite solution, but not absolutely horrid either.

all my shots of the show are here . as an aside - have you checked out the collections option at flickr? i'm loving it. i wish i had more time to organize stuff over there. i wish i had time to look at everyones photos.

today i am trying to clear the piles on my desk, finish grading, get some underdog stuff in order, finally unpack and do some laundry!! and i'm still trying to solve my glue problem. i'm hoping someone from here can give me the solution i need.... fingers crosssed.

have a lovely weekend and a great friday the 13th. i'm hoping to get back into the blog groove next week [but alas... no promises]

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hello there. i'm sorry for such a late post... but i bring you shari and my documentary project today. the word this week was ROUTINE and picked by shari .

SHARI's response:

routine: a part of the everyday, ordinary, a schedule.

i started thinking about this word several months ago when i thought up the idea of dishwashing portraits. i wanted to take an activity that was routine and occurred everyday and create art. i wanted to document this part of my daily routine because i spend so much time cleaning the kitchen each day. what interests me about this idea is that there are so many everyday activities that go completely undocumented, unexamined and are often thought of as tedious, boring, uninteresting. i'm thinking of doing a series of these for other routine activities, specifically involving household chores.

routine 1

a part of my daily routine now is taking a few photos of my backyard. this started as the backyard challenge as i wanted to see my yard with new eyes. each day, i take my camera outside to my backyard and try to see my world differently. i choose to make this activity part of my daily routine.

routine 2

the word routine also conjures up something that it a regular part of my weekly schedule. one such thing is volunteer work at the co-op.

routine 3

capturing a moment from my everyday life, one that is routine but is often left undocumented....traveling as a passenger in the car. i wanted to think of parts of my life that often go undocumented because they are so routine that i don't even really think about them. traveling as a passenger is one of those things, though i do often
document this when i travel.

routine 4

finally, coffee and a book. these two things are without a doubt a part of my everyday routine. this particular image captures my daily ritual in another place (wrightsville beach). i like that these 2 elements of my day are the same no matter if i'm home or traveling. coffee and a good book can turn any day around. :)

routine 5

i loved examining my daily and weekly routine with this project. what stands out in your mind about your routine?

MY response:

shari must have had e.s.p. when she picked this week's word. i fixated on the thought that i'd be out of my element - away from my routine for a part of this past week. there is nothing like being away from home - from your day to day to make you reflect on your personal routines.

the first thing i thought of was routine :: repetition :: daily :: ritual :: a practice of some sort.

i then started thinking about how you can have several "brands" of routine: the ordinary - get up, shower, get dressed, brush teeth. in the ordinary it's the order - the subtle that differentiates you from me. perhaps your order is hit snooze, get up, brush teeth, get coffee, workout, shower, get dressed. [work out is NEVER part of my routine]

then there's the weekend routine, a mon. wed. fri. routine... i have a studio/art making routine [which always involves leaving something slightly unfinished so i can pick up where i left off]. for awhile i had a daily drawing routine [remember?]....

you can get superstitious about your routine - if you don't follow the precise order at the precise time it's all over. or you feel unsure/shakey. you can be loosey goosey with it - not have it, defy it.

in my life my routine changes every 10 to 15 weeks. depending on what i'm teaching, where i'm teaching it, and what time i'm supposed to be at school. with me - the grass always seems greener regarding routine. if i don't have it i crave it, if i have too much of it - too many responsibilities - i want less.

my favorite routine? sunday morning. sleep in a bit. make a big big latte with foamy milk, get the new york times, read the styles section first, then the week in review, then the arts & leisure, and then thumb through the rest of the paper for things of interest.

i also really was interested in thinking about the mundane.... how normalcy and habits can feed into it. how you can play with yourself by altering your routine... shifting small things [start with putting your right shoe on instead of your left]. how being stuck in a routine can be both good and bad.

and so photos you ask? here are things that are not part of my routine, but were part of my life this weekend:

eleven :: routine :: 3

not my dog [having pets/kids exposes you to all kinds of routines - time to be walked, time to be fed...]

eleven :: routine :: 2

not my bathroom or my shampoo

eleven :: routine :: 3

not my bed

and that my friends is it for now. i have photos of my show, and a million polaroids - that was part of my routine this trip [i took 3 packs worth!!] all of this i hope to start to share later this week....

be well....


here they come

i'm in that cross off 2 add 4 things to the list stage. it might be partially because we are leaving to attend the closing of my show at the richard levy gallery .... [happens on saturday evening - if anyone can/wants to come]. any time a trip is on the agenda things get a little wacky... it might also be because i started teaching a brand new to me class today - professional practices. it's funny because i've now taught long enough at one place to have repeat students. i have a feeling a few of them in the class are none to happy to have me again [i am hard on them and demanding]. oh well. i feel as though 10 sessions in 10 weeks is not enough time to really cover what needs to happen in the class. but again. oh well.

above is one project i almost get to cross off the list [must order pins]. the next tank installation is ready to go! woo. tomorrow i pick up some very weird glue that i hope will adhere 1/16" acrylic dowels to glass. i've tried 4 other glues so far and none have worked. sigh. according to this to that loctite should work [fingers crossed]. this is what is both fun and excruciating about making art. finding the tools/supplies that will work and implementing them in ways that don't compromise your original vision.

OH! please go visit an online exhibition i curated for my very talented friend timothy buckwatler . we showed his work at a gallery i used to work at - and i think he's really a funny, smart, talented guy. [and he's selling his drawings for really reasonable prices!] the show i curated is called delusions of grandeur.

and... elsewhere in blogland.... the documentary project was on shari's blog yesterday, ash posted on ship last friday, and we introduced 3 new contributors to sew green yesterday.

i've gotta motor as i'm giving a lecture on web design to a friend's class tonight and i have to prep some material... i'm not sure what my internet access will be like over the next few days - so if i don't post - that's what's up!

here's a polaroid for the road:
a chair and some leaves

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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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