Lisa's Musings

there's little i control

hi there.

i'm going to try and get all the self-promotional stuff done in one post here.... :)

here goes::

letter press print #2

new stitched letterpress prints are available in my shop

pattern pattern pattern

a green and yellow argyle tank installation - not put up by me [gasp!] will be on view at women and their work in their show pattern pattern pattern. it looks like a really nice group of artists.

i hear that kim and alyson might be going. let me know what you think ladies!!

holiday shop

some friends and i are selling some goods!

Please come by on Friday December 7, from 2-7pm or
Saturday December 8 from 10am - 4pm

support and buy handmade!

5528 Dover Street - please enter on 56th street
Oakland, CA 94609

or if you can't make that sale, there will be some stuff at


at blankspace gallery
6608 san pablo avenue, oakland, california 94608 • 510.547.6608

Holidayland «« December 7 - 17th

Holiday First Friday Reception «« December 7, 7-10pm

underdog ink jewels

i'll have some new underdog ink goodies with me. some are already on the website - and new shirts will hopefully be done JUST IN TIME [phew].

beholder's favorite things

and if you want to have some fun in San Francisco....

who : suzanne at the beholder

what : curated a show with some of my paintchips

when: Friday December 7th 6-9pm

where: DISH in Hayes Valley 151 Hayes St
San Francisco, CA

why: It's the Hayes Valley Holiday Block Party

OK - now i have to go back to organizing stuff for all these events.... have a great friday!

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this is what i do when i'm in meetings. the doodling actually helps me concentrate i think. funny how the mind works in that regard.

i've had artist talks on my mind. partially because i've given TWO of them in the last two days. one to my students - they have to give one on their work and so i offered to give them the long version of mine. i showed them work all the way back to right after being an undergrad. it's so funny how i look at that work now and feel so removed from it. i can actually physically remember making it - but it also seems like such a different time.

this morning i talked to another group of students, at a different school, about my work, about working in galleries, about how having a web presence in this day and age is so important....

i'm making my students talk about their own work because i think that saying things out loud really reinforces the premises, parameters, and thematic courses that you are hoping to develop in your work. i find that when i say something out loud it has to really BE TRUE. it also helps me re-evaluate where i've been and where i'm going. all of a sudden i can see connections between bodies of work that i didn't realize were there before. so as much as it's hard - it's also a good thing....

i also got the great opportunity to see julie mehretu speak about her work last week. i've waxed poetic about her work before and seeing her speak was good. very good indeed. she is one of those academically aware and incredibly articulate off the cuff speakers. here's some of the phrases she spoke that i fervently wrote down:

  • mark making as an evolution of language [self-language]
  • patterning as community
  • markers of behavior
  • work intuitively first and search for meaning after
  • a sense of history - a city isn't born, but developed
  • how to pull the imaginary/personal world into NOW [oh this was big for me]
  • the idea of an image shattering as you get closer - a grander picture from a distance and the shifting of scale that one can only accomplish in a paiting
  • erasure as a gesture - as a social gesture [oh this really made me think too]

and i had a little thrill. she included the plans of an ando building in one of her pieces... and i've shown in an ando building . i'll take any connection i can get. what most struck, me, though, was what a different league of artist ms. merhretu is. and how she appreciates it. she flies all over the world. all the major art cities, working on major [and physically large] pieces in major museums and institutions. it's such an "other" level of engagement. she is an art rock star and leaves you "awe" struck - and yet she is approachable and direct and everything you would hope....

anyway.... i offer two sneak peaks

pink sneak peek

blue sneak peek

i'm working on stuff for my show with aurora robson which will be at sq ft galery in nashville in january. i'm in the thick of it. i think it's working. i hope it's working. oh.....

i'm going to try and post regularly, but with grading [last weeks of classes], and life, and this show, and the holidays and.... i may be a bit behind on visiting you all. please forgive me. i miss you already....

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hello friends. it's time for another installment of shari and my documentary project. we've decided to post it every 2 weeks in this holiday season. speaking of which - have you read all of shari's amazing holiday guide interviews? wow.

our 23rd word was chosen by shari and it's: HAPPY {by the way - we are going to try and write less - use more sound or video or images - not sure if i'll be able to keep my big mouth closed, - or wait should i say hand from typing.... but....}

SHARI'S response::


nature: big skies and big trees bring happiness.

happy 2
a happy accident. i love the unexpected bits of happiness that pop up
during my day.

happy 3
autumn. my favorite time of the year.

handwritten happy
lately, handwriting has made me very happy. i asked t to write happy and then i did the same. handwriting is much like a fingerprint and i like the idea of individual voices being heard through the handwritten word. it is something that is missing from type; everyone's voice looks
the same. this idea of seeing different voices through handwriting makes me very happy. the idea is swirling in my head and i hope to turn it into some sort of project soon.

MY response::

the first thing that popped into my head was a song. so i sang it .... [can't believe i'm letting you hear this]

happy is one of those almost indefinable terms. and so i offer a list - an ever changing always expandable list...

happiness is:: sitting in front of fires, holding hands while sleeping, the sound of purring,

dreaming of....
quiet moments of contemplation,

feeling loved, making a leap, trusting, allowing time for oneself, big skies, surprise gifts,

happy - pets

new shoes that you just have to wear everyday for a week, polaroid film, a really really good latte,

happy - eating
being pampered and treated to amazing meals by my husband

more soon. have a happy monday/tuesday.


sketchbook mums

i had to draw them .

today i made a list of things i need to get done [funny that one thing on the list was make a gift list. a list contained. why do i find that so funny? i'm a dork]. i got scared and had to bury said list in the bottom of my purse. i might have to micro manage my lists. that seems pathetic [dork, again]. but then again derek and lauren make it [multi-listing] look so so good .

i fell in love with this little camera. it's so darn cute. it would make me feel like agent 99 from get smart. do i need another electronic gadget? no. but i have such a love of mini mini things. hmmmm.

shybird by Nathan Lynch

i went and saw my friend Nathan's show at johansson projects on friday. it was stunning. these sad and comical minimal birds wearing fake beaks. who are they trying to be? the subtle contrasts in textures and colors and the absurdity just hit me in the right spot....

funky finds just posted a stitch re-cap [so many great crafty things! i have to go back to finish clicking to all the stuff] and she's offering a a giveaway just comment on the post!

lastly hannah asked me about what offset printer i used... answer is in the comments of the last post....

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oh my god. how much do i want this dress?? anthrolopogie i curse you for making things that i want all the time. why oh why? this dress makes me want to do a gray doily installation and then stand in the middle of it wearing it.... sigh.

wedding invite

over the summer i did a wedding invitation design/printing. go gocco go! they just got married, so i think it's safe to reveal the design. i loved that this couple went for blue and brown - such a nice and nontraditional color combo. i liked the urchin that i drew for them so much that it's going to end up on some underdog goodies very soon. [i'm in the midst of getting it all together]

and speaking of underdog :

winter cards - ice skating boy and girl

the winter skaters are back and i also put up my holiday card from last year:

have a delightful winter

just in odd chance you don't want to make your own cards this year.... and happen to like mine.... you can buy them [heh heh!]

this year i broke down and just had my cards off-set printed. as much as i love making my own i couldn't fathom gocco-ing all thanksgiving again. not when i have a show i have to finish before the end of december. i actually really like how they came out [i'll show you after i send them out!]- but i do miss the gocco. i'll have to print something else for fun sometime soon.....

the documentary project will return next week. since it's the crazy holiday time of year [already?!] shari and i are going to post every-other week! and shari - you'll be proud - i have SOUND!! :) i just have to figure out how to get it on the blog.

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i got me some heath

how long has it been since i posted a corner of my home? a very very long time.

i brought home a couple of lovely wares from heath ceramics in sausalito. their store is so lovely. the people that work there are so kind. if i had an endless pit of money how much would i love to have a table full of heathware?

i love heath ceramics 2

i love heath ceramics


i'm way way way behind on some thank yous. i'm going to try and catch up here.... and i'm missing images [entire folders of photos seemed to have disappeared from my hard drive. harumph!] and i'm fearful i'm going to miss someone... so please forgive me if i do...

«« jenny , thanks for your amazing package - i can't believe i get to hold the drawing in my hands - along with all the other goodies!!

«« esoule and i traded. i got this . i love it. so much.

«« babel sent me a stack of good things to flip through and fawn over. and a bauble for my finger [always appreciated]. i have a stack to send out to her. soon soon soon. i am behind on mailing. so behind.

«« forever ago bug sent an amazing array of hoops, old time clothespins, sunglasses, a wrap skirt and a pair of THESE - which i had when i was a kid and so dearly love. they make a certain sound when you walk. clunk clunk.

«« for no reason at all liz sent me this photo . it is so amazing. noir - scary, but also delicate... that tape measure.... dangling.....


«« have you seen jen's book ?????? wow. i've been working on a 7x7 blurb book too, but not quite finished. hers is just stunning.

«« you have until TOMORROW to sign up for the ornament swap . kathleen and nicole are genius'. i so want to sign up - but i don't know if i can actually pull off a good ornament.... hmmmm

«« k.c. has been really rocking the links lately [well she always rocks them, but...] give tokyo polaroids a second look....

«« creature comforts has a great holiday guide

«« shari will be interviewing a host of creative folks this year just like she did last year.....

«« amy had her book signing tonight. [i don't think we can over-gush about this book] did anyone make it? would love to hear about it!

and so you don't curse me forever i will stop linking now. more soon....

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chair drawing :: fromthevine.jpg

the last three drawings to show you.

i am overwhelmed by your kind words on the work. THANK YOU. it's so daunting and scary to put work out there. it's like you hold your breath for the response. and so i really really appreciate the time that you have taken to look and respond. it means a lot.

chair drawing :: from the vine, 2007 watercolor, colored pencil, thread/embroidery on duralar, 12”X23 1/2”

the one above was my attempt to meld the chair and the wallpaper - it's like the design grew from the chair [which is an anthropologie chair by the way]

bed drawing :: a green bed in grass

this one was also a hope of mine....

bed drawing :: a green bed in green grass, 2007 water color, colored pencil, thread/embroidery on duralar, 9”X12”

can't see the doilies through the trees

can't see the doilies through the trees, 2007 acrylic paint, watercolor, colored pencil, thread/Embroidery on durarlar, 40” X 25”

shari hosted the documentary project yesterday. i was so excited by her take on our word :: squished.

have a good tuesday!


bed drawing :: beds in poppyland
bed drawing :: beds in poppyland, 2007, watercolor, colored pencil, thread/embroidery on Duralar, 18” x 8”

as promised. here are some drawings from my show. i'll show the other 1/2 next week..... thank you SO much for your enthusiasm about the show.... and your willingness to help me with trees. that brought such a smile to my face. i hope i can take you up on your offers of help !!

the drawings for the show also all dealt in some way with the "natural world". i looked for wallpaper or patterns that exemplify our desire to bring the outside in. and since i imagine the beds and chairs as representations of people.... our longing to be outside and one with nature... and connected to one another. the whole if chairs had a memory idea.... i also decided to represent nature with the doily so there are clouds and trees that are made up of doilies.... you get the idea.

chair drawing :: fly me away
chair drawing :: fly me away, 2007, watercolor, colored pencil, thread/embroidery on Duralar, 8” x 8”

i thought of myself as the chair in this one.

a small doily tree forest
a small doily tree forest, 2007, watercolor, colored pencil, thread/embroidery on Duralar, 17” x 11”

doily drawing :: clouds
doily drawing :: clouds, 2007, acrylic paint, watercolor, colored pencil, thread/embroidery on Durarlar, 25” x 40”

chair drawing :: once there was a yellow chair
chair drawing :: once there was a yellow chair, 2007, acrylic paint, watercolor, colored pencil, thread/embroidery on Durarlar, 25” x 40”

i just got back from a lovely excursion to Heath Ceramics with amy . it was so much fun. it's so close to me. this is dangerous. photos next week....

i also posted on ship today.

finally - i'll be at blanksapce tonight for a few hours for oakland art murmur

have a good weekend!


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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