Are you ready? Or more accurately, am I ready? Today marks the first class in the In My Studio Workshop Week for me. I’m excited to be in Karen Miller’s Travel class. I have several sketches from my South Korea trip to work with, and several photos otherwise. I’m looking forward to learning her process for taking an idea to pattern to finished piece.
I finally finished the centre of the South Korean wall hanging! Now I’m onto the border. Last Thursday I dyed some fibre with a friend. Last evening I finished off the dye job. Hopefully these colours will work with the rest of the wall hanging.
I also checked in with the local spinning group via Zoom and spent time at my wheel spinning some gorgeous alpaca. This will not be going into a hooked piece. It will be used for knitting. It is spinning up very fine. Just right for some lace knitting.
I hope this finds everyone well and safe, and looking forward to the week. If you have been, thanks for reading. ❤️
Happy Friday everyone! This week was short, but productive. I’ve been busy reading “Getting Things Done” by David Allen. I wrote down everything I had in my mind that needed doing, then created a project list from the things I needed to focus on, and then a next actions list for the list of things to do. I’m swamped! I’m also loving it! But I can’t take on anymore.
I’ve also been working on my South Korean roof tile end cap wall hanging. It’s slow going, but looking better these days. A friend was over to help me pick out fibre for the border. I will be doing some dyeing and overdyeing.
We also went through the poetry wall hangings I want to hook. They are on backing and ready to go. I just have to finish this South Korean wall hanging and swing back to them for awhile.
I’m still sketching the South Korean designs in my sketchbook. Lots to do yet. Plus I’m still working through Meryl Cook’s “The Creativity Workbook”. I’m enjoying the inspiration of the fall colours around me.
I’ve been listening to Cindi Gay’s rug hooking podcasts while hooking or afterwards. She is a very wise lady full of all kinds of knowledge about rug hooking. I don’t hook the primitive style, but I still learn from her. Thanks for doing the podcasts Cindi!
The last week of October will be a busy week. The In My Studio Workshop Week is on then. I have a Travel class with Karen Miller, a Words and Images class with Elizabeth Miller, and Intuitive Hooking with Meryl Cook. There will also be a group hook-in and a panel discussion I’m looking forward to stepping outside my comfort zone to learn more from these talented teachers and others.
If you’re interested in taking classes I believe there are a few openings left. Contact Karen D. Miller on Facebook and check into the events she is hosting.
If you’ve been reading, thanks! Have a great weekend!
I hope everyone had a good and happy Thanksgiving! Even though we were encouraged to stay home or in our small bubble, it was possible to get together with family and friends through technology. Long live FaceTime, Skype, Zoom, WhatsApp and other apps that connect us!
I just went through my first Thanksgiving without a deep freezer. Let me say how thankful I am for our food supply chain. I picked up a frozen turkey Friday and it thawed in the fridge all weekend. I have a fridge that runs cold, so it needed that time to thaw. In fact, it was still partially frozen Monday morning! I ran cold water in it before stuffing it and hoping for the best. I cooked it in a Look bag and tin foil roasting pan, as we have no roaster and no place to store it if we did have it! It turned out just fine.
Because our current chest freezer does not work properly and our upright freezer, which we ordered in August, has yet to arrive, I decided, in the best interest of not wasting any food, to gift our Thanksgiving guests (my daughter and her husband) with leftovers to take home. Hopefully little food will be wasted.
Other than Thanksgiving this has been a quiet weekend for me. I took some time off to read, review and reorganize. I’m reading David Allen’s “Getting Things Done” for the second or third time in about 15 years. I realize just how much I have put on my plate to deal with right now. I decided to back off and focus on the big picture – the long term view – for the moment. So I’m back in a goal setting phase, making sure every activity meshes with future goals and my vision of where I want to be ten years from now.
This is a challenge for me. My husband is seven years older than I, and is a senior now. I have discovered that in marriage planning cannot happen in isolation. You have to consider the other person and what reactions or parts they might have in the plans. This is especially true for me as I am not driving at the moment for a variety of reasons.
I am going back through photos and sketchbooks for ideas for mats of various kinds. There are way more ideas than I can possibly hook. It’s so hard to decide what to do and what to leave undone. Do I compromise and hook a small mat instead of a large one? Or is it better to just not hook it at all? In the meantime, I have South Korea mats and poetry mats to hook.
By the way, I discovered the shape of “joy” to me this weekend. I drew a sketch to twig my memory. It needs some revamping, but the basics are there. I may have another mat to hook soon!
If you have been reading, thanks! I hope you enjoy your week ahead. Cheers…Jean.
I found myself really fighting my South Korea roof tile end caps wall hanging this week. I decided to not rush it and just work on it briefly each day. Instead I’ve been busy sketching more designs – both of South Korea and from Meryl Cook’s “The Creativity Workbook”.
Despite spending more time this week drawing designs for South Korea wall hangings, I’m not sure how many will actually make it onto backing. I’m seriously thinking about the viewer, as well as the creative act (by me). There’s a balance that has to be struck there for me. In previous years I hooked too much for the viewer, with the odd exception. Now I’m wanting to get back to the act of just creating. It’s important for me to know what I want to say with my work first though. So I’m thinking.
I’ve been working through Meryl Cook’s “The Creativity Workbook”. I am paused on finding a design that expresses how I feel joy. I did go and experience a couple of things that give me joy – walking in nature amongst the fall foliage. I picked up a variety of shapes and colors of tree leaves and have been busy designing leaf patterns and templates. But to actually draw joy is another matter altogether. I think I know the color/s of joy for me, but not sure of the shape of it…yet.
Wednesday I joined an In My Studio Zoom meeting to listen to Judi Miller talk about artist residencies. It was a very informative talk about the options available, what you need to have a successful one, and her experiences. I thoroughly enjoyed the talk and would like to thank Judi publicly for making the time and effort to do it, and to thank Karen Miller for organizing and facilitating it.
I received my ProChem dye powder shipment this week. I’m looking forward to more dyeing. I’m wanting to dye the pine trees, ocean and skies using Lucy Richard’s spot dye formulas. I’ll be dyeing the old-fashioned way – in the oven – rather than in a microwave I do not have a microwave to dedicate to dyeing, nor a place to put it.
Well that’s my review for this week. If you’ve been reading, thanks! I wish you all a happy Canadian Thanksgiving weekend, wherever you may be. My next blog post will probably be posted Tuesday. Take care everyone!
Two new sofa beds are in the house! That completes the seating for the studio and the guest bedroom cum family room cum classroom. I do not have room in the studio for my comfy chair and the sofa bed. So we will be rearranging furniture in the near future.
Karen Miller’s class on Tuesday was a blast! I had to design a piece on the fly…like a minute or two…and start hooking. I’m a slow hooker, especially with materials new to me. The object was to experiment with new materials. I tried dental floss, pink elastics (off broccoli folks!), fabric strips, parchment paper (yes, the kind you bake on), acrylic eyelash yarn, wool yarn, wool fabric, silk fabric, cotton fabric, sewing with buttonhole thread, some twill weave tweed that shreds like crazy, and more. It was a fascinating exercise! Karen is an excellent teacher. Here’s the results.
The South Korea rug is slowly progressing. I’m sticking to wool, silk, and nylon for that one…so far.
I spent more time sketching the South Korea photos. Lots of options for wall hangings. Lots of elements I might piece together to form one wall hanging.
Branding progress…I think I have what I need now. I’ll be visiting a local printer eventually for new business cards, hang tags, greeting cards, etc. I’m hoping to find a local affordable printer who can do an excellent job. I currently use an outfit in the US, but I’d rather use local, if I can keep the quality.
Meryl Cook’s book “One Loop At A Time – The Creativity Workbook” arrived this week. I’m looking forward to her class during the In My Studio Workshop Week the end of October. I may sidetrack into some of that workbook before the October class. I don’t believe it’s required for the class, but it is a good little thought provoking book I hope will get my creative juices flowing along different lines.
I am thoroughly enjoying online learning. I hope once Covid-19 is behind us it will continue. It is just so much easier for me, not just financially (no hotels or air fares), but logistically too. Three cheers for the rug hooking artists out there putting in the tremendous time and effort it takes to create these online courses. Know that I, at least, appreciate all you’re doing!
And that’s my review for this week. I hope everyone has a great weekend if you’ve been reading, thank-you .
Our sofa beds come today! That means everything will be in the house to finish the studio. It’s been a long haul! I will be so happy to have everything done. Next up will be the dye kitchen. Hubby and I are already talking.
This past weekend has been very productive for me. I was able to select photos from our 2017 trip to South Korea and put them in an inspiration folder on my computer. This past weekend I’ve been sketching possible compositions.
Sketches of South Korea
I will be taking another Karen Miller class tomorrow on materials and techniques. I’ve also signed up to listen to a talk on In My Studio by Judi Miller on artist residences on Oct. 7th. Plus I will be taking part in the Workshop Week through In My Studio the end of October. A busy fall of learning! So nice to be able to do this online.
I have also been hooking more on the South Korea roof tile end caps wall hanging. I am going slow, having stopped several times for dyeing and travels this summer. I am hoping to be finished by Christmas.
I managed to tear my Dorr wool into one yard pieces and wash and dry them in preparation for dyeing. My front loader really shrank the fabric, but it is still great for dyeing and rug hooking. It is all stacked neatly, awaiting dyeing.
I listed the fall colours swatches for sale. There are 15 of them at $3 each + shipping. They are 3” x 16” and Dorr wool. If you’re interested, contact me either here, through Instagram, Twitter, or Facebook.
I also listed the small landscape I hooked using the swatches for sale It is 8” x 5” and unfinished. I’m asking $60CAD “as is”, or $80 CAD if you want me to finish it and include the hidden hanging system. Again, you can either contact me through this website, Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter.
This week I’ll be working more on the South Korea wall hangings. I also want to get the issues surrounding my rug photos and branding sorted out. I am likely going to order more fabric dye powder.
Thanks for reading and have a wonderful week everyone!
I was on a wonderful trip to New Brunswick this past weekend. Partly to see family and partly to deliver all my scrapbooking cabinets and supplies. While there I had the opportunity to visit the gardens at the Irving Plantation in Bouctouche. I took a lot of photographs and did some sketching.
While in New Brunswick I also stopped at the Art Shack store in Moncton. It’s a friendly little store with knowledgeable staff. I picked up a couple of watercolour pads for my next retreat. I’m hoping to go to the cottage again before fall – this time for photography, sketching, painting, and hooking.
Frenchy’s!!! Need I say more? All the local rug hookers know Frenchy’s means fun! We stopped in Shediac and I went into a Frenchy’s thrift store for the first time in about ten years the other day. To be fair I lived about 1500 miles from the nearest Frenchy’s up until six months ago. I spent half an hour in the store and came out with two silk blouses, a wool skirt, a long wool vest, and lots and lots of pantyhose. Total cost was under $45 CAD.
What am I going to do with this haul? I am going to wash it, deconstruct it, and dye the nylons in preparation for rug hooking. Then I will cut it into swatches and strips to use some and sell some. It all sounds like a fun time to me!
That’s it for today folks. I hope you all have a wonderful week.
Artist Retreat, that is. This week I had a lovely time at a friend’s cottage on the Bay of Fundy with my husband and my creative gear.
I took far too much stuff. We could barely fit it all in the car! But we did! Aside from gear we had to take clothes, bedding, food, and water for five days. Hubby took his bicycle to fit in some riding. We both took technology to work on various projects. It was forecast to rain.
I took work to finish. I took my camera for inspiration photos. And the tripod, just in case. I took my rug hooking frame and South Korea rug. I took my sketchbook and watercolour pencils. I took reading material and watching material. Also I downloaded some podcasts. I took linen and Red Dot interfacing to transfer those patterns I enlarged last weekend.
Our destination had no internet, so I used my cell phone to create a hot spot every day in order to finish an Udemy course on composition.
I organized for this retreat using an app called Simple Mind. It is a mind mapping app that allows me to see a lot of information in point form at one glance, and how it’s all interrelated. I was able to adjust my retreat plans as it happened, to accommodate for finishing things early. Not being distracted can really be a big boon to productivity.
We went on a lot of walks, with and without camera. Some to the beach, some not. Some with sketchbook, some without.
I read “The Art of Botanical Painting” by Margaret Stevens. It’s a great book if you want to be a botanical painter. I am not that detail oriented. I did garner quite a few colour and composition ideas for an upcoming series of wallhangings I plan to develop.
I also took Keith West’s “How to Draw Plants”, “Nature Drawing “ by Clare Walker Leslie, and “Drawing Scenery: landscapes and Seascapes” by Jack Hamm. These were more for reference. I haven’t drawn a seashore close up before.
I did manage some watercolour sketching for future design ideas. Lus I finished the Hearts wall hanging and coasters.
Hi everyone! I’m back on the road again! Hubby and I are heading to the west coast to Vancouver and Vancouver Island. I’m hoping to check in with Val Galvin in Chemainus for a fibre fix. Possibly I’ll be able to check in with a rug hooking retreat at Yellow Point on the Island too. We’ll see about our timeline. We are visiting friends for the most part.
In Vancouver I hope to check in with a fibre gallery I discovered. Hopefully we’ll get to Granville Island to check out the Craft Council of BC’s gallery and a few other galleries there. I would like to check Michelle Sirois-Silver’s studio out on Nov. 4th as well. Once again, family comes first.
We’ve spent the last week in Edmonton reconnecting with family and friends. Had a good visit with an artist friend from long ago. I brought my sketchbook and laptop so I could sketch some rug designs from our South Korea trip. I managed about four drawings so far. These are going to be much larger wall hangings than I’m used to doing.
I’ve also been knitting on the Baby Cardi from “60 Quick Baby Knits”. I’m almost done the second sleeve.
I also took part in the Facebook Black & White Photography Challenge. I didn’t do as well as I’d wished to, but considering my distractions, I did well.
I’m off to enjoy a breakfast here at the hotel. Hoping to make Vancouver by nightfall. Take care everyone and have a great weekend!
What a beautiful May day we have here. It’s overcast, just the way I like it. Don’t get me wrong. I like the sun. But sometimes the prairie sky can be too bright for me. It’s so intense in colour and brightness.
Yesterday Hubby and I had a delightful walk around Wascana Lake in the heart of Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada. You wouldn’t know that out in the middle of the Canadian prairies lay this jewel of a park that houses the lake. We watched all kinds of ducks and geese coming and going about their business. It was a magical time.
This past week I’ve been focusing on getting back to a normal sleep schedule and organizing 1500+ photos of South Korea. I’m still working on both. I want to get the photos organized so I can get started on my next wall hanging/rug. I’m debating whether this one will be a floor mat or not. I want to use my leftover worms for it. We shall see. It depends how the design works out. So this week is photo week, sketch week, and possibly design week.
Just a few reminders…
My work is currently in a group show at the Art Gallery of Regina until Friday.
Also, I am planning to take part in the Cathedral Village Arts Festival Street Fair again this year on May 27th from 10 AM – 4 PM. I received notification of where my booth will be located. For people looking for me, I will be at the far end of the Fair between Montague and Athol streets on the south side of the street. Maybe start walking the Fair from the Elphinstone Street end if you want to still have money and energy by the time you reach my booth!
In other news…I am being published for real this time. The information has gone to press. Stay tuned for further information. I’ll believe it when I see the article in the magazine!
I will actually be OUT of my studio most of this week. I have last minute Christmas shopping and grocery shopping to do. I have three social events this week…at least. I have two appointments. And when I’m home I have company, and my two online classes to finish up.
If I have time I will be…
~ posting more product to the website,
~ hooking on “Moss” for relaxation,
~ designing more wall hangings (okay, that’s probably a pipe dream, but we’ll see)
I hope everyone has a wonderful time this week preparing for the Holiday Season. 🙂
I’m posting from my iPhone. We’re having a doozy of a spring snowstorm here and power was out for a while. I cannot get our modem up and running again.
So on today’s agenda is more hooking. I did do some research yesterday on eagles for a wall hanging based on my youngest daughter’s poem. She wrote it in grade 9 I believe. But I’ll leave it till I finish the wall hanging to share.
I will also be sketching and planning more wall hangings. I badly need a new footstool cover and may work on that as well.
I finished Sprouts. And I started Blue-eyed Grass.
I removed most of the colour from the nylons, but need more RIT colour remover to finish the job.
I scoured my sketchbooks for more wall hanging ideas. Will transfer some on backing today, as I still have to wait to pick up the RIT colour remover. I will be spending some time sketching as well today.
I was to the opening of the Art Gallery of Regina 40th Salon Show this week. It was a great evening celebrating a diversity of styles of art and craft. My work showed well and I was pleased with how it was hung. A big shout out to the people who made it happen.
It’s a nice sunny, warm day here today, and I hope to go outside with my camera. Nothing like a little spring inspiration.
Inspiration doesn’t only come from photos for me. It also comes from other bloggers…and they don’t have to be rug hooking blogs either. Here are a few blogs and blog posts I’ve been inspired by lately.
I finally finished them today! No sketching or Curves class project worked on. But I did answer an awful lot of phone calls.
Tomorrow is looking like a serious tidying up of my studio. Plus some sketching and fixing the Curves class project. We’ll see. I also have people coming to look at the sewer pipe situation to give a quote, and I have a medical appointment, and I have to pick up my new eye glasses. Hmm…methinks tomorrow will be busy…
Why do I do this to myself?! Yesterday I was side tracked by figuring out numbers for retirement. Hubby wants to retire soon, so I am crunching numbers to see how it will work. Plus researching retirement options. Spent most of yesterday afternoon on that.
In the evening I was on the phone. We had a great time, so all is good. I don’t do hand work in the evening anyway, due to the poor lighting in our house. I really need to phone the Canadian distributor for Ott light bulbs and buy a replacement for my lamp. I’m a bit nervous about a light bulb that expensive surviving the mail though! They are $65 each I’ve been told.
“The Bipolar Disorder Survival Guide” by Dr. David Miklowitz. Good reading for anyone, let alone bipolar people. Helps you understand them a bit better. At least so far it’s helped me.
I also spent considerable time reading a library book called “The Bipolar Disorder Survival Guide” by Dr. D. J. Miklowitz. Bipolar disorder is in my extended family. This appears to be a very good book that discusses not only bipolar, but illnesses that are close to it, and tells the reader how to determine the difference. It also gives many case studies and real life examples, which are helpful in understanding the illness better. There are also lots of quizzes to help a person determine where they stand. I’ve only finished the first four chapters. I am looking forward to reading this very worthwhile book.
Yesterday’s sketchbook pages. Still working on images from Craigdorrach Castle in Victoria, B.C.
In rug hooking yesterday:
I did manage to sketch for most of the morning,
block and press the hems in on the remaining Christmas ornaments, and
I prepared 4 more linings for them.
I need to prepare 8 more linings and sew them on. Today’s job, if I don’t get distracted, is to sew on the ribbon hangers and linings.
Hi all! What am I up to? I am working on the Christmas ornaments this week. Variations of burgundy and gold. Lots of fun and quick to do. 🙂
Also still working through my photos sketching interesting images.
Projects I’d like to work on…
The Barn, a studio piece from a plein air exercise,
The Creek, another studio piece from a plein air exercise,
a larger poppy wall hanging.
I’m finding myself drawn towards more abstract images these days. Well, actually close ups. I am fascinated by what goes on in our lives and around us at the microscopic level. I am a firm believer that it is the small things that matter in life – both in how we interact with people and in what is beneath our feet or in front of our eyes. Small things are important. They grow or support or build bigger things.
I discovered I love curves. A lot of the images I am choosing to sketch from photos include scrolls and curves. This surprises me. I have been fond of straight lines for a long time now. Maybe I am having a style shift?
Other upcoming projects? I’m designing a mini-course on hooking curves, lettering, and different backgrounds. I am also looking at developing a course to show beginners how to design, transfer to backing, hook, and finish a piece.
For now…it is time to do some sketching and finishing of Christmas ornaments…
There were thousands of geese on this unnamed lake making an awful racket!
Lots happening now we’re back from vacation! Sunday was our 35th wedding anniversary. We had a blast! We live near the Qu’Appelle River valley. It’s a big valley that is home to many market gardens and a few quaint towns…one of which is Lumsden. So we headed out to check out the market gardens and found a treasure trove of autumnal images…
Then headed to the Chinese restaurant in Lumsden for a very delicious meal, before heading home via the back roads and a small town called Pense. We arrived home about time for tea and a nap.
We realized there was an art show on, so we hoofed to the Prairie Artist Guild’s Fall Show and Sale. It was the third day of the sale and most of the good work was already sold. But we were able to see some fine work, especially by Larry Jackson, a local watercolour artist.
In celebration of our anniversary we watched the first Star Wars movie that came out in the evening. It was released in 1977, but was one of the first movies Hubby ever took me to when we were dating in 1979/80.
All in all a great day!
Yesterday I was back into the swing of things. I took my Etsy shop off vacation mode, and posted ten more items for sale.
I also got back to sketching. No twist crayons here, so I’m using watercolour pencils. It feels a bit different. A bit messier to control. But still, it’s good practice to use different media.
More sketching yesterday. Reading more of Simply Modern.
I met up with a rug hooker I met at the TIGHR Tri-ennial. We had a great time sharing photos, showing each other our work, and chatting each other up about rug hooking. I am looking forward to meeting her again. 🙂
Planning two more get togethers today with relatives. Should be fun! 🙂
Sketching doesn’t have to be great art. It just has to get the basic shapes and colours down. Sometimes not even that. I enjoy using my sketches as a base and “mixing it up” in my wall hangings.
Had a great time sketching more yesterday. Took photos of interesting designs and shapes in the place we are staying.
I also read more of Simply Modern. As well as more of Chronic Condition on Canada’s health care system.
We spent the evening visiting family and having a great time.
I am surrounded at Dad’s by lots of visual stimulation. Lots of ideas for hooked wall art, and just plain art in general. Lots of colour ideas too! Really, ideas are all around us everywhere. We just need to train our eyes to see them. It helps to have a healthy dose of “what if…?”