Thursday, January 31, 2013

Savage Beauty

Even though it doesn't seem like it has much to do with the work that I make, I am a sucker for a nice, juicy fashion book. I picked up Savage Beauty, the catalog for Alexander McQueen's 2011 exhibition at the Met at the library yesterday and have been drooling over some of the images. Here are just a few of my favorites:

Wednesday, January 30, 2013


One of my resolutions was to make at least one matchbox art by the Finnish artist and master bookbinder paperiaarree. I think I originally found her beautiful books on Etsy, and through that discovered her "Letters to You" matchbox pieces. I've been totally smitten with them ever since. She makes and posts one a day during the advent season, and I just love seeing the objects and arrangements of these little mini collages.

I've wanted to make my own for some time now. Lord knows I have enough little bits that will fit into a matchbox. Now that I've finally made it a priority, I've managed to make a few. They're not perfect, my craft is off and there's been some trouble shooting. I keep getting hung up on the right type of paper for both the box and the cover. It needs to be sturdy, but not a board. The only stiff paper I have is white, so that means covering it with another paper. I'm not super happy with the paper for the covers either. It also needs to be stiff, but I think somewhat thinner than the box. I get discouraged because I have so much paper, but it never seems to be the right size/weight/color. The fantasy is to someday have a large flat file with wider variety of basic papers.

These are a few of the first efforts. Some are better than others. I'm also getting hung up on what the heck am I going to do with these? They're not professional enough to sell for much money, so I'll probably just start mailing them to people. Perhaps they will become new homes for charms I make and sell. We'll see. For now it's just a fun thing and a good use of all my little bits.
Thanks for reading!

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Quote of the Week

"The desert shall become sea and the sea shall become desert"

~Antonio Conselheiro

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Symposium Trades

I spent the past weekend attending the 4th Annual ECU Metals Symposium Material Topics. I can't believe that this thing has been happening for 4 years already and that I've been a part of each time. Although, I must admit it's much nicer to attend as a regular participant as opposed to being part of the crew that puts the whole thing together. I'm not going to go real in depth with the symposium, but all the lectures and demos were interesting and informative. I don't think I sat through anything I didn't enjoy. But, due to the scope of the event, it's really difficult to design/host a hands on demo for the number of participants the symposium gets, so it was a lot of sitting and listening. It's nice to have a mix of both.

But one thing I noticed happening more at this symposium than in the past was trading. Of course the charm swap happened as it usually does, but it seemed like there was a little more trading between artists this time around. I love it, I think it's great, and I wonder if there's a way to foster more of that in the future. I came out with a couple trades: red lady earrings and blue and red ruler brooch from Marissa Saneholtz, red and green "watermelon" earrings by Marlene True, and my swap charm, a sweet little sea urchin charm by Colby Byrd.

I hope everyone else had a great time at the symposium, and if you haven't been, I hope you get the chance to experience it someday. Thanks for reading.

Monday, January 14, 2013

New Year, New Town (for now. . . )

Trent River, New Bern

I think the most consistent thing in my life since I finished grad school has been inconsistency. Since I've graduated, I haven't spent much more than 3 months in any given place. Even my longer stints in Greenville were broken up between a couple different living situations (read: crashing with friends before taking up a house sitting gig). Now it's a new year, a new semester and I've got a new place to stay in New Bern, NC, without any plans to stay past the end of the semester. It's a pretty little town, at least the neighborhood I'm in.
Trent River, New Bern
Many of the homes are large and/or historic and I'm near the river which is nice. I'm also only a 10-15 minute drive from work as opposed to 1 hour, which is also nice. I'm also closer to the beach. Hopefully I'll get to explore the area in the next few weeks, although I am headed up to Greenville next weekend for the annual symposium. (Just can't shake that town).

So that's that. Where I'm at for the time being and trying to enjoy it for the time being.
(Most likely) Historic Home

Church Steeple

Thursday, January 3, 2013


Gallery and Store at Peters Valley
Most of 2012 seems very far away. When I think of where I was at this time last year and everything that's happened since, most of it seems fuzzy and dream like, and more like 2-3 years ago then 12 to 6 months. Some things that happened:

- Got my first real teaching job at Craven Community College
- Got a job at the Children's Museum and Science Center in Rocky Mount
- Quit my job at the Children's Museum and Science Center in Rocky Mount
- Ran my first corporate sponsored giveaway (Thank you Novica!)
- Curated Hot Under the Collar and participated in the Trunk Show, both at the SNAG conference in Phoenix, AZ
- Spent the summer as the Artist Fellow in Fine Metals at Peters Valley Craft Center
- Cheered on many friends and family as they experienced their own life milestones: new babies, weddings, new jobs, and other successes (whether they knew it or not).
- Got my work carried by 3 galleries, and was in several exhibitions.
- Met a ton of great people and learned a bunch of cool new things.
- Made stuff.

Well, it seemed like more in my head.

Matchbox art by Paperiaarre
Looking forward, the future seems to be a big, scary, exciting mess. I'm gearing up to start teaching again on Monday, so I can't even picture anything past the end of spring semester right now. I think I need to approach the new year by breaking it into more manageable segments; 3-4 months at a time. I have a few goals for the spring, beyond, you know basic survival:

- Continue working on my found object body of work.
- Finish Day River.
- Listen to more music.
- Read more books: poetry, religion, philosophy, that sort of thing.
- Make an Alabama Chanin piece.
- Make at least ONE paper matchbox art piece, like those by Finnish artist Paperiaarre.
- Become more disciplined.
- Do something AWESOME with the Kidrobot Raffy I received for Christmas.
- Be less anxious, stress less, worry less, breathe more. (Don't I make this resolution at least once a month?)
- Go to the beach more.
- Write more, especially blogging, but also journaling, dream journaling, etc.

Raffy, by Kidrobot
So no particularly lofty goals, just small improvements on the everyday. This doesn't mean I'm not going to pursue any big things, just focus more of my energy on enjoying where I'm at right now, and making that mean something.

So happy new year, a best of luck with whatever 2013 brings you.