Friday, August 31, 2007

A new toy!

My coil binding machine arrived today. Actually, it's really a coil-binding hole punch machine -- it just punches the holes and then you manually twist the coils on, which is easy and pretty fun to do. It's just like this one on ebay, the DFG iCoilBinder Coil Punch & Binding Machine. So I've been looking for things to bind. Bound the instructions that came with it. I should make myself some small notebooks. I should also order some larger coils (the coils that came were the smallest possible, 6mm, pretty tiny).

Was back on the flowers web site today. Got caught up with the changes/updates that she has sent so far. And until she gets back to me with further instructions, I'm back to work on the print tomorrow. I'm definitely printing another layer on top.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Experimental gocco print, day 5

Spent a couple of hours in the afternoon working on the mock-up of the print, trying to figure out what it was about it that I didn't quite like. Took me a while, but I finally figured out the the horse's body needs to be lighter.

So here I've just put down a layer of white. This is still using the same open screen that I've been using all along, with the horse shape cut out of a self adhesive label.

Then I decided it needed to be just a touch whiter, so I hit it again, only this time very quickly and lightly. So this image has "one and half presses" of the white:

Here's the cut out of the horse shape. Cut with an exacto knife.

Then I finally had to flash a whole new screen to print the horse itself! This is the first screen I've had to flash in all these different layers that I've printed. I didn't want it to be black (I thought it would be too stark), but looking at this now, I think it looks rather washed out. So I may need to go back and print black (or at least very dark brown) on top of it. But I'll let it sit for a couple of days first. Both because I want to think about it, and also because I MUST return to work on the flowers web site starting from tomorrow.

So here are about half of the prints drying on the drying rack.

This print has been a complete experiment, and there were lots of mistakes and gotchas, which hopefully I won't make again, at least not too many more times...hah! I think I might get 8 good prints (if even that many) out of the 22 I printed. Of course, if I print another black or dark brown layer over the horse, there might be further reduction in the number of good prints left. We'll see.

Tomorrow, silk road flowers again!

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

ART exhibit, library, & taiko

As expected, I didn't work on my print today. Spent most of the day in town, delivering a piece to the Artist Repertory Theater's exhibit, helped Jim with the exhibit at the library, and then went on to a behind the scenes talk by Portland Taiko.

I had resisted going to the Portland Taiko concerts for many years, for a couple of reasons. The one free concert I attended, many years ago, all the pieces sounded the same and everything was so LOUD. After the first piece, I was more or less done. But a good friend is really involved with them and invited me to this behind the scenes talk, and they're really expanding what they do. They're working with a couple of different artists for their fall concert, a public artist to design the set (and she's also a founding member of Portland Taiko), and a composer who's also performed with a community taiko group before. They showed a few of the pieces that they're working on, and one of them was particularly wonderful -- they're using paper as instruments. Not paper mounted as drum skins, but just the sounds that paper makes when they're folded/opened/struck/scrapped/whatever in different ways. That should be a wonderful piece to see in concert.

Oh right, my birthday present arrived in the mail today -- a copy of the Holy Qur'an. (Something I've been meaning to read since the late 80's and am finally getting around to it.) I may have to start a 'Reading the Qur'an' blog to complement Mr. 5000's Reading the Bible blog. (But then again, maybe not.) The introduction alone is 65 pages long, so it may be a while before I actually get to the Qur'an part.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Experimental gocco print, day 4

Another day, another bowl of strawberries. And another big pile of chard. Next year, I'll probably plant 1/4 of the chard that I planted this year. As it is, the freezer is full of packages of frozen chard already. And prepping the chard took all morning. Spent a couple of hours catching up on project related emails before I was able to get started printing.

I was surprised to find what I printed yesterday in the light blue is still not dry to the touch today. I went ahead and printed the next layer, also in the same light blue. I printed it a couple of times to get the blue to show (when layered over other colors, the colors don't print true without at least a couple of layers). Then I decided I wanted the dots to be lighter.

So here I've just scraped off the light blue and re-inked in white. (This screen has been used and cleaned 8 times for this print as of today. It was used and cleaned at least that many times to print Fatherland. It's still holding up well, but looks pretty beat up alright.)

And the dots over printed with the white. So the dots have been printed 3 times -- twice in the light blue and then once in white.

I've been storing my inks in empty altoid tins, and they've worked really well. But I'm starting to run out of them. Desperation is the mother invention, or something like that, and I now wonder why I didn't think of this before -- saran wrap and THEN altoid tins. You can see the colors of the inks saved, and you cram them in there. (Just the saran wrap does not keep the ink nearly as well; the ink will start to dry out.)

So here's the mock-up at this point. I'm still proceeding with my original plan at this point. I'm letting it dry over night before I continue.

This way of printing is much more like painting and less like printing. Unlike etching where you pull one print and decide what to do next; and once you like what you've got, then you edition. With this method, I'm editioning as I go (I have to, as the plate is 'gone' after each layer), and as I figure out what to do next. It's sort of like reduction woodcut, where the plate is destroyed after you print each layer.

The movie tonight was Dessert at Pix! Actually, there was no movie, and Pix was a dessert place that I've been meaning to try but keep forgetting. Thanks to the Scarlet Letters, I was reminded of it today. And since there were only 2 movies in the Random Movie Selection hopper tonight (No End in Sight and Becoming Jane), I decided to throw Pix in just for the extra sport, and it won!

I won't be able to work on the print tomorrow, I'll be dealing with the post office insurance, dropping off artwork for exhibit, volunteering at the library, and going to a talk in the evening. Just as well, I bet the light blue will need the extra day to dry.

Monday, August 27, 2007

Experimental gocco print, day 3

Not quite as much progress today (but that was expected), both because it's errands day, and also as the print gets closer and closer to being finished, each step becomes harder and harder.

So this was the first attempt. I played around with the idea of using a specific pattern vs. the amorphous blob, and decided to go with the blob, which I originally conceived as a light gray, and had mocked it up as such last night. But I also didn't want it to appear white. By the time I got it 'gray enough' and printed it, it just looked too dull. I didn't like this at all. Decided to go with a light blue instead of a light gray. Another also -- decided the 'blob' had to be thinner.

So this was the 2nd attempt. And I printed the right side as well. The left side had to be printed twice, which you can sort of see. Most of the copies have some kind of a registration problem on the left edge. I haven't quite figured out how I'm going to deal with this yet. I also didn't get the photo while there was still sunlight in the afternoon, so it looks so yellowy from the flash.

Now that I'm looking at this again, I'm wondering if the blobs do need to be wider. I think I'll wait and do the next step first, before deciding on this.

Now we're off to bed (pretty early for me), so I can get up in another couple of hours and watch the colorful lunar eclipse.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Experimental gocco print, day 2

This will layer over what I printed yesterday, on the bottom. I smeared the ink on with a palette knife and swished the tip of the knife around to get the patterns:

Here I'm about to print the top portion, and again, I've swished the palette knife tip around in the ink (this is another thing that I've been wanting to try, to just create patterns this way):

Here is what it looks like printed. The white parts slowly disappeared as I printed, although it didn't completely disappear. I suppose I could open it up and swish it around every 2-3 prints if I wanted the white parts to remain really visible. I could also see using this method to make a screen printed "monoprint", just draw directly into the ink with the palette knife.

Here's what it looks like printed. This is as far as I got this afternoon. Had to think about what I'm going to do next at this point.

Here's one version that's too dark, and another version that's too light:

So far, I've used just 2 old screens, the yellow screen from Dentistry and the open screen. Spent the evening mocking up what I'm going to do next. I had found this drawing of a toy horse in my sketch book from a couple of years ago and wanted to use it. As I was making the print, however, I didn't really keep it in mind, which is ok. I just wanted to play and see what happens. Right now, this is how I'm thinking I'd incorporate the image of the horse --

I had found the horse under "mysterious circumstances" -- it just showed up, inside the house, one day. We hadn't had any company, and certainly nobody with kids. I found it just sitting around. I wasn't digging around in the basement or some closet, it was just there. I don't remember where it was now, but I remember thinking how odd it was that it was just sitting there. I checked around the house and didn't find anything missing, so I doubt there was an "intruder" of any sort.

So, a mystery horse that just showed up. I thought of the Trojan horse, and how some types of computer viruses are called Trojan horses. I love electronic microscope images of microbes and such, and the shapes in this print is reminding me of those. I also like the image of teeth (although human teeth) in the portion that was from Dentistry -- how gift horse and teeth go together -- although that was a complete coincidence.

Here's the mock-up:

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Experimental gocco print, day 1

With this print, I'm refining some of the techniques I first tried with Fatherland, and also trying some new techniques.

First shot: This was a used screen -- the yellow screen from the Dentistry print (a cmyk print). You can see the screen is still stained from the process yellow, but the screen is clean. I used white paper tape to block out an area 3+" x 7" and inked up with a custom mixed yellow and some of the pastel yellow straight out of the tube. And in this case, I put the ink on rather thinly because I wanted the unpredictable drop outs. This is just an under layer.

The resulting print:

Getting ready to print the next layer. This screen was also a used screen, but it's a completely open screen, ie, I flashed it with a solid black copy. I used this for many of the background shapes in Fatherland; you can still sort of see the shapes. Here I've blocked out the borders:

I just drew circles with the ink out of the tube; this is one of the techniques I've been meaning to try. Here's the screen in the gocco:

Then I cleaned it up. And in this case, since the screen is completely open, I do use Windex to clean it (no worries about pin holes), so it's completely degreased and ready to be used again. Then I used white paper tape to block out another area, and drew ovals with the ink out of the tube, in orange:

This last shot was something that I hadn't tried before, and in fact, just thought of as I was doing this -- I smeared ink on the screen with a rubber spatula. The ink is very thin, and I could only print 5-6 prints before I had to re-ink it. But here's one print:

Tomorrow, I will layer over the left side where the magenta, orange, and red areas are. These are just there to create the texture for the under layer. At least that's the idea. We'll see how it works tomorrow.

Bought a coil binding machine on ebay today. The project I'm proposing to do with the kids at the Q Center involves them each printing a page and then the class making a coil bound book from all the printed pages. Plus I can use it too, of course.

Friday, August 24, 2007

Prepping to print, and other topics

Everyone's probably sick of pictures of luscious strawberries, so no pictures of that today, but I did harvest another big bowl and have been eating them on and off all afternoon. Yum...

I just realized that I've been going to the weight room for a whole year now...

I can't say that I'm crazy about the routine, but I definitely enjoy the results --

1. My blood sugar is normal, normal, normal.
2. I can work in the yard for 8 hours and not feel anything, and then get back out there the next day and work another 8 hours.
3. I can sling domestic rocks around in the yard; I can climb up big rocks out in the wild.
4. I can gocco all day and not get a backache.

And I don't have granny arms!

But speaking of gocco, remember all that paper that I trimmed a couple of weeks back? Well, today, I finally started planning a new print. Sketched out a general layout and went through my old sketchbooks looking for ideas. I want to get away from the cmyk prints, which I really enjoyed doing, but now it's time to try something else. I really liked the way Fatherland came out, and I want to use some of the techniques I used there to make a new series of prints.

These will measure 7"x11" on 11"x15" paper, bigger than the large gocco print bed which measures 6"x9". And since I like my prints to have well defined borders, this will require some planning ahead. I need to mark out my image area (the 7x11) before I start printing. I tried lightly marking it with a pencil. No. Then I cut out a piece of cardboard 7x11 and used the bonefolder to score around the board. This was OK, but it was easy to score past the ends which ruined the paper. So I ended up doing this:

Taped down my board and my white paper tape:

Put my print paper (Rives Lightweight) over the board, using the white paper tape as guides, and lightly ran my fingers along the edges of the board:

This worked much better, although it gave the paper a beveled look. I like the look, but it might look a little weird on a screen print. But if it's a real problem, which I doubt it will be, I can always dampen and press after the prints are finished:

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Necessary things

Like cleaning, and going to the post office, and retrieving lost items from school, and updating the Portland Open Studios blog. This last item I was supposed to have written and uploaded two weeks ago, but only just finish today.

All the gocco stuff from class has been unpacked, cleaned, and put back to where they belong. And another day is gone...

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

What a relief

Turned in all the paper work for the grant! Yes! I celebrated by going out for a long walk after I got home, and catching up on some reading. Their instructions had been so stern that the application can not be changed after the electronic submission, but while I was there, the staff person helping me had me write in new dates, new locations, and also things that I forgot. So it really was more flexible than I had figured. And she didn't say, "oh no, 2 carriage returns!"

Packed up another copy of Fatherland to send to Topeka, and sent in the itemized materials fees for the gocco class. Still need to finish unpacking from the class. I guess that will be part of tomorrow's chore.

It's what's for dinner

Why is everybody saying that? Or am I just lucky?

There I was at Marco's for lunch, reading the new Natural History that just arrived. The guy at the next table, with his back to me, was wearing a t-shirt that said "Science, it's what's for dinner." I turned the page in my Natural History, and the next article (actually a short blurb) was titled "Radiation, it's what's for dinner." Hmmm...

This was a day of running around -- making copies of my grant application (7 double sided copies, clipped together), 7 copies of my resume, picking up letters from donors, etc, etc, putting together all the supporting document to complete the application. AND, the good news -- I heard from RACC that I could write in my newly confirmed exhibition date of Nov-Dec/2008 at the library. Yay! Tomorrow, I have to burn the CD, then it's all ready for delivery.

Heard from Brea at Topeka that Fatherland had not arrived. Went to the post office to check on that, and apparently, it has disappeared into thin air. The post office has no record of it even leaving the building. There was only 1 scan on it, and that was when I dropped it off. ??

After dinner, we went out for ice cream, and went into the pet store next store to visit the rats. While we were there, a woman came in to buy a rat; she didn't even look, she just asked for the smallest one. Sadly, I knew where that little rat was going. The guy at the store just reached in and grabbed the rat by the tail, and the little guy really didn't look like he wanted to go. That was how I got my first rat actually -- she was going to be someone's dinner (rats, that's what's for dinner), but I ended up with her instead. And she was such a great little rat.

The movie tonight was Sunshine, a science-fantasy-horror movie that was rather slow moving.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Deep fried artist's books

I dreamed last night that to really 'finish' your artist's books, you must deep fry them. So I was standing in front of this big vat of boiling oil and dipping my books in them, one by one. And as they came out, I examined them and thought, "why, yes, they do look crisper this way..."

Went to Bend to visit my American mom today. 7 hours of driving, 2 hours of visiting. Not very good ratios, but I've just got too many things to do at home to stay over night. It was pretty wet (rain, fog). There was an accident on N. Santiam, looks like someone drove off the road and into the ravine. Traffic backed up quite a while. Glad I was being pretty careful.

Tomorrow will be a day of running around. And the day after too. Seems like there was something art related worthy of mentioning today, but now I can't remember what it was. So maybe it wasn't worthy after all.

So, to wrap up the What I Like About Myself thing, I'll reach out and touch

the Scarlet Letters
Mr. 5000
the Chinese Yarn Princess and

But no pressure, only play if you want to...

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Moping around (& part III of 'what I like about myself')

That's NOT the part I like about myself.

I was wrapping up the grant application today (there was the online part, which was due last Wed, and then there's all this paper work that I now have to produce, due this coming week), and discovered that the presentation portion of the project must also happen in the same grant year! And the only exhibit I had already lined up, and was listed in the application, was for the year after! Arrgh! I do have a library exhibit lined up now for end of 2008 (same grant year), but it didn't happen by last Wed. And not only that, in one of my answers, I used 2 carriage returns! (They specifically say to not use any CR's.)

So I'm DOOMED. And I'm probably marked as having 'poor grantsmanship.' They keep track of you, too. Now I'll have to change my name and move to another county under some artist protection program...

Well, all of this brings us to Part III of What I Like About Myself. Drum roll please...

10. I don't mope around for too long...really. Truly. Actually, my original entry for this was going to say "I don't waste too much time on regrets, worrying about what-might-have-beens and what-should-have beens." And it's true, for the most part. I learn my lesson, I hope, and move on. Some mistakes take a little longer to get past, but eventually I do.

OK, moving on...thanks to Gretchin, my Lovely Assistant for the gocco class, I have some photos from those 3 days. Here's a shot of the exchange that happened at the end of the class. The assignment was to make an oversized print on the B6 Print Gocco, ie, a print that is larger than the print bed size. They had different options on how to achieve that though, and some people chose to do very tight registration, while others played it pretty loose. Someone made a scroll; a couple of people made accordion books (one put hardcovers on hers too, and gocco-printed the cover paper).

On other fronts -- did a little work for Portland Open Studios blog, and reviewed documents for Print Arts Northwest. Tomorrow, I'm off to Bend.

What I like about myself, part II

Hey, Day 4 of my 48th year passed without any further injuries or insults to my person! There were a few close calls as Anjali and I hiked around the trails along the Columbia Gorge, but no injuries. Had a really fun day out hiking around, and I wish I remembered to get photos at Oneonta Gorge. And next time, I'd go prepared to go through the river to get behind the log jam!

So, part II of what I like about myself:

8. Dang, I'm going blank again. ... ... OK, got it -- I enjoy spending time by myself. I like going out to eat, or going to the movies, by myself. I like spending the whole day in my studio by myself. (But I like having company too.)

9. I'm willing to try most things at least once. Although I drew the line at chicken feet. I've never wanted to try chicken feet.

So close, yet so far...I'm not coming up with #10! Part III, coming up tomorrow.

The movie tonight was Hairspray. It's very different from what I remember of the original movie. It seems like a whole different story line all together. And I didn't care for the music as much. It was still fun though.

Friday, August 17, 2007

What I like about myself, part I

Day 3 of my 48th year -- swollen lip. You know how once you bite your lip, accidentally of course, it swells up, which makes it hard to not bite it again, which makes it swell up some more. It's a vicious cycle. Those of you who have seen me in person will know that this is No Small Matter, them lips being a major portion of my face! And now they're even bigger!

Work wise -- finally got back to the silk road flowers web site again. Put up all the images that Rebecca has sent up to this point, with line count and character count samples so she can start working on the descriptions.

I got tagged by Sundry to list 10 things I like about myself, which she has titled as 'An Exercise in Immodesty'; of course I'll have to play along! This is not so easy as you might think. I came up with the first few without too much trouble, hence the Part I. The rest will have to wait until tomorrow --

1. I'm a hard worker; I'm pretty motivated and disciplined.

2. Oh dear, I've forgotten the rest already. Hmmm...I had several ready to go, and now I'm going blank. Oh, right, I'm not much for material things; I live pretty simply, and I really don't have great desires for most things. And the things that I do buy, I enjoy a great deal.

3. Here's another easy one -- I take good care of myself; I eat healthy (which I enjoy doing), I exercise (which I do not); I floss twice daily. And yeah, I LIKE flossing my teeth.

4. I'm resilient. I've had a lot of Good Things happen to me, which makes it easier to deal with the Bad Things, so maybe I can't take credit for this one. But it's such a good one...

5. I'm pretty accepting and tolerant, although I'm no doormat. I can tell the difference between someone being themselves and being respectful of others, and someone being abusive.

6. I try not to be limited by my fears. Given a good reason, I can make myself do things that I find scary. I'll stand up to bullies, and I'll investigate things that go bump in the night. And I will do it for others who can't do it for themselves. But of course, if I think you should be perfectly able to do it, then I don't see why I should do it for you.

Now it's starting to get a little harder; I'm running out of the 'virtuous' ones, so here's a not so virtuous one:

7. I have great legs! People have commented on my legs since I was 12, so it must be true. Although now the knees are starting to get wrinkly...on top of being black and blue from yesterday's incident.

OK, that's as far as I get tonight. Part II tomorrow.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Back to normal livin'

After a couple of weeks of nonstop working first on the silk road flowers site, then getting ready to teach, and finishing up the grant application, I was ready for a break. So did some much needed yard work and ran some errands today.

My 48th year is starting on the wrong foot (despite the very nicely done Happy Birthday by Mr. 5000, and a live performance by Gretchin, Aaron, and Anjali at the end of the class). Lets see, Day 1 of my 48th year -- had a small Personal Hygiene Disaster, during class. Day 2 -- a curb jumped out of nowhere (I suspect from under the petunias), and I found myself hitting the cement in record time. As I was going down, I thought -- a) wow, this is like doing pushups in reverse, b) at least I'm not 9 months pregnant, that would've made quite the splat.

The good thing about not weighing very much is that, well, there isn't very much weight coming down when you hit the cement on your palms, knees, and a pelvic bone. The bad thing is, there isn't a whole lot of padding either; I definitely felt the pelvic bone hitting the ground, although it doesn't seem to be suffering as much as the knees, which are swelling up quite nicely.

My age has caught up with me

Having said I was 47 all year since Jan 1, my age has finally caught up with me. Happy birthday to me! OK, so much for that.

The gocco class ended today. I think 15 people was a bit too much. I should have to limit it to 12 next time. And also need more materials. I had to bring in more inks today, and also pick up more papers. Need to review my notes on the cmyk stuff too.

The movie tonight was Stardust. Really fun until the end, which was somewhat anti-climatic.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Waiting, waiting, waiting

OK, so I finally got to the point where I pushed the Create PDF button on the grantsonline thing. And now I'm waiting and waiting and waiting for the finished pdf to come back...oh wait, there it is!

OK, had to make a couple of changes. In the original form, it was not clear that they were asking for the 9 digit zip code, and in fact, there is no room for the extra digits. But in the pdf it generated, it says 'zip code + 4'. So I've added that, and now I'm waiting, waiting, and waiting again. Aarrrgh.

I just want to get this done so I can go to bed!

This was the 2nd day of the gocco class, and I'm pretty exhausted. And now this grantsonline thing is just taking its sweet time...I want results, and I want results now!

Monday, August 13, 2007

Hooray for Carrie...

...for taking my grant proposal and making it say what I mean for it to say! It's looking a lot better. I still have more to do, but at this point, I'll just have to leave it until tomorrow night to wrap up.

Today was the first day of my Pushing the Gocco Envelope class. I got a bit of a shaky start -- got there at 9:15am, thinking that I had 45 minutes to setup, only to find that several students had already arrived! I recovered, and the rest of the day went pretty well, I think. The rest of the paper I ordered from Daniel Smith for the class finally arrived today too. (And we ARE going to start at 9am tomorrow, so I best get to bed.)

The 11th and 3/4 hour

This is it for the class...the show's going on tomorrow. Gretchin and I met at the school today and went through the facilities and computer lab. Everything's packed up and staged by the door.

Had breakthrough in the grant application's project summary section. It's finally reading a little better now. And finished the IPRC alternative gocco printiing classes descriptions. OK, best get to bed.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

The 11th and half hour

Finally finished updating the class notes -- added Table of Contents sections to both the Basic Tutorial and the Advanced Topics handouts, and voila, instantly, everything appears to be so much more organized. Why didn't I think of that earlier?

And also in the Why Didn't I Think of That Earlier department -- I finally figured out how to compute the cost of inks for these classes. I always just estimated, but today, I realized that I could weight the inks before class, and again after class. And since I know how much the inks cost / oz, I can compute the total! Hey, what a revelation!

I'm mostly ready for the class at this point, just need to pack up everything and I'm set. Spent the evening working on my grant budget. Figured out the total cost of davey boards + paper + gocco supplies to produce all the prints and books; cost of the screens (custom made folding screens + plexi to hold the artwork); cost of my time (how do you figure that?). Looked at the guidelines for finishing the application, and saw that I'll need to supply a host of supporting documents too. But I have the week after Aug 15 to do those. (Oh yeah, the guildline also says you get points deducted for 'poor grantsmanship'...what a great term!)

Friday, August 10, 2007

The 11th hour...

Got some feedback for my grant application -- one person said it looked really good, another said I had a ways to go! So now what?! I'll only have this weekend to finish it, as I'm teaching all days next Mon, Tues, and Wed, and it's due on Wed at 5pm. Still haven't heard back from the retirement community, so not sure where I stand on it yet.

Good thing I hadn't taken the gocco class notes to the printers yet, I remembered today that there was a whole section that I wanted to add. Another 'oh, no!' I just took another look at the notes, and realized that I just (I mean just now) closed the file without saving the changes! I don't remember it asking me if I wanted to save it or not. Drat, drat, drat. I guess I'm just running around like a chicken without a head. Got to go re-write that new section now...

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Take THAT, racoons!

Bwahahahahahaha...I got the strawberries this time, and lots and lots of it.

But sadly, that was the only thing that went right today. Found out that the papers I ordered from Daniel Smith on Tuesday morning has not yet left their warehouse! I can still hope to get them on Saturday, but Monday is probably more likely. And it better not be later than Monday. I do have some of the papers for the class already, so it's not all horrible, but it certainly could be better.

Met with the program director from the retirement center today. She sounded so enthusiastic on the phone and through email, but was a bit reserved in person. The meeting also felt a little rushed. I hope we're still going forward. It would be pretty devastating if it doesn't work out since I don't have a back up plan; and at this point, it's too late to line one up.

Ran (well, drove) to Fry's to pick up the Canon laser copier that I saw advertised in the paper the other day, and guess what, the prices were only good for Monday and Tuesday, and today, the price was double what it was.

Well, the strawberries were good. And I finished updating my class notes. Just need to give them another going-over tomorrow, and they're off to the copy shop.

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Hooray for Gretchin

Thank you for volunteering to be my Lovely Assistant!

So today was a day of running around -- Art Media to pick up some paper that Daniel Smith didn't carry, Multicraft Plastics to get estimates for components for the folding screens, picking up more gocco supplies...and oh, 2 more people signed up, so along with my Lovely Assistant, we're now bursting at the seams at 15 people. And last year, the class didn't go because only 1 person signed up. So how do you figure what makes 1 year work and not the other?

Anyone wants to be my Gocco class assistant?

OCAC didn't get an assistant for me! Wah! Now I have 12 people in the class and no assistant! So, if you're reading this, and you know your way around Macs, Photoshop, and scanners, I want to talk to you! How about a free 3-day gocco class, this coming MTW, Aug 13-15?

Got some feed back from the new and improved project proposal for the grant, and it's good. Ordered papers for the OCAC class (plus 100 sheets of Rives Lightweight & 25 sheets of BFK for myself). Shipped Calypso to Australia for the exhibit. Have a meeting set up with the Program Director at Cedar Sinai Park, so things are moving along. Also, IPRC emailed to see if I would teach the advanced class there, but I rather do this experimental gocco class that I've been developing instead. I guess I'll see what they say.

Now if I can just get an assistant!

But anyhow...took the car in for its oil change yesterday and did my customary walk through Tek campus and zipped into the Cedar Hills Crossing mall to visit the little rats. But that's for later.

So a long time ago, this used to be a dumpy little mall. They dolled it all up and renamed it Cedar Hills Crossing, or something like that, and use this little frog image as their logo of sorts.

Well, I'm sorry, but this little frog and 'crossing' just don't mix! I think little frog, hop-pity hop, hop-pity hop, hop-pity hop...then, out of nowhere, zoom, zoom, zoom...well, there's the little flattened frog.

Anytime I'm anywhere near this mall, I stop by to visit the little rats. This little guy was busy cleaning her/himself the whole time I was watching. As soon as I pulled out the camera, s/he turned and faced the camera. See that cute little star on her/his forehead? And this gets better.

After I visited the rats, I stopped for lunch and pulled out Snow. I've been reading this book forever now, and I was within a few pages of finishing. And there it was, the protagonist all of a sudden mentions a charcoal colored dog with a star on his forehead.

This must be a sign...

Monday, August 06, 2007

Last day of flowers site for 10 days

I've got to start working full time on getting the RACC grant proposal done, and also preparing for the OCAC class, so today's my last day on the web site until after Aug 15. Every page is stubbed in, and all the galleries have something in it. All are just placeholders, and to see how much space we have, how big the image can be, and how much text she can put in. Here's a look.

Got drafted into the Print Council's membership committee, and there was a meeting tonight, so that took up the evening. It was a fun meeting, and I came away with 2 small jobs to do (they were inline with what I was already investigating, so no hardship). I am getting behind on the Portland Open Studios blog though; will need to deal with that tomorrow.

Got into the Books.07 show in Australia (yay), so will need to pack up a copy of Calypso tomorrow. Due on the 20th. They didn't give us a lot of time to pack and ship. Just got my acceptance letter yesterday.

I actually had a couple of fun pictures to show today, but now I'm just too exhausted to get them off my phone...time for bed.

I was right! I knew it!

Ha, got a message from Rebecca today, about the web site, saying I was right! Ha. OK, now I feel better.

On other fronts -- made good progress on the grant application (there are a ton of questions to answer, and not very many characters to write your responses in). And decided to have some folding screens made, with books attached to them. Once I get it all done on Aug 15, I'll post it here for your reading pleasures.

Aren't these pretty? Sliced sections of a baby cabbage from Eliza:

Saturday, August 04, 2007

Some progress on the web site

When I'm finished with this site, I'm not doing the next one she asked me to do. But she's probably also thinking that she's finding someone else to do the next one anyhow. So it will all work out.

She seems to think that we're having some aesthetic difference, when it's not about aesthetics at all. I keep telling her to not worry about what little doodads she's going to put on the borders when she doesn't yet know how much space she's going to need to display all the important stuff that she wants to show. She spends all this time emailing me, and expecting me to explain to her, whether some little decorative thing is doable or not, when I keep saying, it's probably not going to matter because you're not going to have the extra space for all those decorative doodads. Clearly, different priorities in our thinking, but I don't think it's the aesthetics.

On a more (much more) cheery front -- I bought one of the artist's books at the Sense & Sensuality exhibit today. The show came down today and I went to pick up my book, and I just couldn't resist...

Progress on grant project

Hey, heard back from RSM (Cedars Sinai Park); they want to meet to discuss the project! And I met with Jeremy this morning to talk about exhibiting the books. Honestly, I need to think BIGGER. There I was thinking, oh, I'd make these books, and they would be in this show, and I'd invite the RSM residents, or something like that. I talked to Jeremy, and he was, OK, lets see what other artists we can pull together and do a whole thing on memory loss. And how about a performance too. And how about seeing if we can get PICA involved.

He looked at me and said, "have I totally blown your vision out of proportion?" Well, heck (this is a G-rated blog), yes! But in a most excellent way.

Started back on the writing part again this afternoon, but didn't get very far before I was sucked back into the web site.

This next week will really be crazy -- get ready for the OCAC class, and get the grant done.

Thursday, August 02, 2007

Where to begin?

Well, in chronological order, I guess -- finished trimming my paper, yay, now I just need to sit down and start printing. Had a fun visit with Samantha & Stephen in the afternoon...but of course, I had no prints in progress to show them.

For the web site, we decided to leave the banner alone for a while and get moving on other parts first. I'm experiencing banner fatigue -- this morning I woke up and thought, hmmmm, why do *I* care what the banner looks like? It should just be whatever she says she wants. Not an attitude I like to have.

But the highlight of the day was Andrew & Beth's Going Away AGAIN party. The hot topic of the night -- sock darning, and an actual sock was darned during the evening. Other lesser topics were discussed as well, like Andrew & Beth's cross country move, how Mr. & Mrs. 5000 met, and the length of Laura's femur.

The movie of the week (saw it last Tuesday) was The Simpsons. I wasn't sure about seeing it, since we had never seen the TV show, I figured I would miss all the jokes. Well, I might've missed some of the jokes, but it was still pretty good.

And this was another load of chard that I harvested yesterday, along with a big bucket of strawberries, which I think I harvested too early, in my haste to beat the raccoons to them.

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

It's over!

Yes, it will be another 11 months before cherries are in season again! I must congratulation myself for, once again, not killing myself by finally eating ONE too many.

So more back and forth on the silk road flowers site. I was hoping to finish trimming papers tonight, but never got there. And tomorrow, Samantha is coming for a visit, and I was hoping to have prints in progress already to show her. Sigh.

Heard back from the RACC office about my grant application, and based on their input, I'm refining my ideas of the project, and I'm getting more excited about it. But, didn't get around to calling Rose Schnitzer Manor to follow up on the email. (I'm hoping to work with the RSM residents for this project.)

On the good news front -- yes, the 2 violin pieces are definitely sold. They're paying in installments, but I'll be getting the first (small) check soon, I hope.