Thursday, December 30, 2010

Dogs and Morning Light

Something about seeing dogs on a sunlit morning seems to predicate a better world, or the possibility of one. I wonder if this image came from the title of the blog flying dog studio design wall? It could be. The above is another t-shirt design.

I love this alternative to a journal/idea book on spiritcloth.

Monday, December 27, 2010

A Swan is Born

Just saw the Black Swan, an improving cinematic tale of a girl with stars in her eyes, her nurturing mother, and her consummately professional mentor...

Oh wait, that's not right...

This movie is a hoot, but it's beyond me whether that's intentional. The David Cronenberg reference in a pivotal scene would seem to indicate it's meant to be tongue in cheek. It's as if the Crypt Keeper was telling a Weird Tale about ballet. Has anyone seen it, and if so, did you manage not to cover your eyes during the manicuring scenes? In the same theater, The King's Speech was playing, which probably really was improving.

Review of The King's Speech on l'astronave (which in no way implies endorsement of my views of The Black Swan by the proprietress of the l'astronave)..

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Something else to open

Doors on trickhouse, my own assemblage story is behind one of them. Cool sound effects - check it out!

Above is a detail of an assemblage made in an antique portable writing desk, similar to the one featured on trickhouse.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Florence Street Sculptures

This is the work of Patrick Amiot and Brigitte Laurent in Sebastopol, California. Not sure, this may be a working mailbox (see right paw).

More photos of other Florence Street sculptures on Tinytheatre.

A delightful series of small scale scenes on krumelurerockstrek

Young artists at work at Studio Banana

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Too much light?

One of the truly marvellous jeweler's elves by Kat Soto in the windows of Shreve & Co. in San Francisco. Part of the proceeds from sales of these benefit Doctors without borders and the Aids Memorial Grove Foundation. I wish you could see the beautifully articulated hands of these, delicately jointed at the wrist.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Finished tea cosy

I don't have a teapot the size of Mina's, so I am holding a spout up to show where the spout would naturally come out, with my fingers substituting for the handle.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

W.I.P. (Christmas gift for a tea drinker)

In a friend's flower shop recently, I noted that she was keeping her teapot warm with a towel. Tea cosies are simple to make - just make a semi-circular paper pattern with the spout and handle marked. Then cut out the lining and the front a bit larger. I have ironed interfacing to the lining and will do so with the back side of the front also. See where I have ironed the back of the lining to overlap the interfacing? the front and lining should be sewed together, then both halves are sewed together remembering to leave the gaps for the handle and the spout. A great D.I.Y. project for a winter evening (unless you crave efficiency, it's also a nice one for hand-sewing)- I will post a photo of the finished item tomorrow.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Into light

Above, the interior of Terrasol on Polk Street in San Francisco, presided over when we visited by a young man so jolly it seemed as if he could be Santa Claus in 40 years.

Above, An installation of mosaic eggs by Robert James in a run-down part of Market Street, part of a program of The Artery funded by the S.F. Art Commission and the National Endowment for the Arts.

Across all the cultures and religions in the Northern hemisphere are celebrations of light in the darkest days - It's fascinating -literally hypnotic-  the dazzling surfaces presented by the reflective, faceted surfaces of ornaments, as if staring into this dissolving radiance could take one right out of materiality, time and civilization and its discontents.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Robbie's Idea

Robbie had the idea of my making a cushion cover for his mother (my sister) to memorialize their terrier Teddy, who is no longer with them. The reference photo was taken by a family friend, Dick Gilmore.

For the fur, I felted a wool shirt I found on the street. I have plans to turn five sweaters which have been felted (three of them intentionally) into two fashion forward sweaters, possibly over that limbo week between Christmas and New Year's.

Monday, December 6, 2010

December Evening, San Francisco


North Beach

China Town Window

The Window of Community Thrift, in the Mission, where students from California College of Art are doing a series of installations.
I'd identify the artist, but the window only had a list of participants in the series. If anyone knows, please let me know.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Made for Aid

This reversible wall hanging is for sale at the Made for Aid Etsy Store, along with other items suitable for Christmas giving, including scarves for wintry weather. All proceeds go to charity, see the Made for Aid website for more details.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Something Wrong

Christmas ornaments in a local store. Please note: these are gun-sized, not ornament sized. If a certain ex-governor were a festive decoration, this is what she'd be.

Edit: After I posted this, went to a gallery show which had a matched pair of stitched and stuffed white satin pistols as a wall-hanging. How can political/didactic art hope to keep up with the proliferating weirdness efflorescing from the strange machine which is mature capitalism?

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Something Mysterious

I get the part about the protective coloration...but surely this is unusual? If you feel inclined to speculate, please do.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Holiday Card

I'm not exactly sure which Holiday is being celebrated any case, I'm offering 10 of these 4" by 6" cards, blank inside, with pristine white envelopes for purchase at $12.00 American, shipping included. As the Holidays are upon us, I'll just be sending them out for the next week or so, so you'll have time to use them before Christmas. I will attempt to send out any orders in 24 hours.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

They were a family of dreamers

There's a beautiful tribute on Waldo Walkiria World- one of those works you look at and it seems so simple, yet you've never seen anything quite like it before.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Something Horrid

On redubble. This must be the Antiguardian of Dreams, or the Bringer of Nightmares. I wonder how far back the Punch and Judy show goes? He is the little homunculus in all of us, the reptilian brain which it's well to sing to sleep.

Softly, softly.

Link to Jan Svankmajer's Punch and Judy.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Something Pretty

Something I made for Mina's shop. I like this narrative cartoon about the creative process.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Paper blooms

This is a detail of Bryan's lovely 2011 calendar
there is a larger detail on Tinytheatre 
along with more about of the studio visit. 
The detail shown here is about 3/4 of an inch across.
These are made on a letterpress, 
a traditional printing technology which  
impresses a metal plate into damp paper.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Commissioned work

Happy Monday - here is another commissioned piece.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Brought to you by the Department of Wishful Thinking

I suppose you could get into some interesting discussions in a bar wearing this...

Edit: it occurs to me that when we are contained, we long for freedom, whereas when we are completely free, we start thinking about the wee little cottage with the light in the window. This is, of course, hardly an original thought, in fact I believe there is a classic song involving a red bandana along these lines.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

All Fall Down

Looking for that still space in the middle...not much time to make art lately, health issues of my remaining parent taking up a lot of time.

Monday, November 15, 2010

A digit is not always a number

Illustration for a Berkeley Monthly article about a teacher explaining the term "digit" to middle-school students. Unfortunately, this particular teacher confused "lie" and "lay" unintentionally in the text of the article - gnashing of teeth, rending of garments here.  Sigh.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Guardian of Dreams

Another t-shirt, this was based on a stuffed lion I had as a child. The sale at redbubble (see Nov. 4 post) ends on the 14th.

After I had made this, I visited Spirit Cloth and saw a sibling of this character (not the first time Jude and I have been looking at the same page in the book of dreams). And there is a more cautious cousin of these two on fiberrainbow.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010


"In winter," Grandfather Trout said, "summer is a myth. A report, a rumor. Not to be believed in".
                                              - John Crowley, Little,Big
Edit: See comments section for selections from readers' favorite winter-themed poems ( add your own if you would like).

Monday, November 8, 2010


For film buffs in particular, there is a post about racial and gender strereotyping in film/television followed by some very thoughtful comments at Razored Zen.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Sale at redbubble

Above, the Ancient Mariner as a t-shirt buddy. For the next week, through November 14, all my t-shirts,prints and calendars are 15% off ar redbubble with the code below. Just saying...
And here's the link to look at all of my work:
I'm going to make this an illustration friday entry for the prompt afterwards-
in the sense that this is after the phantom ship sails away, 
and the Mariner is left with the consequences of his actions.
For all averred, I had killed the bird
That made the breeze to blow
-Samuel Taylor Coleridge, The Rime of the Ancient Mariner

Monday, November 1, 2010


Cassandra was given the ability to see the future by Apollo: when she refused him, he cursed her with the provision that her prophecies would never be believed.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

W.I.P. and Jeopardy question

She was given the gift (gift?) of prophecy with one disadvantage...

I chose this as the oracular shell from among those below (and replaced the book cover with this piece of plain wood)

The final on Monday.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

A Little Bird Told Me (Commissioned Work)

Do let me know if you are interested in commissioning one of your own...the next one I am doing is a wedding photo, very excited about that. I'm treating these differently than the ones I do for myself, they're softer, and of course I assume people don't want the faces hidden. Thursday I'll be posting another altered  photo of a child, this one more in the usual mode.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Not a Japanese Horror Film

I should have been a pair of ragged claws
Scuttling across the floors of silent seas

--From The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock, T.S. Eliot

It's wrong to confuse an author with his or her works...but he has a dyspeptic look that seems perfect for a crab, does Eliot. Not to mention the poem being set in October, in keeping with its Autumnal mood. I'm going with literature-related t-shirts on Mondays for awhile. Next week, continuing with the nautical theme, I'll have the Ancient Mariner up.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Two Books from a garage sale (There are no seasons in California)

The second image is from Heath's New System of Writing, more from this exquisite little pamphlet on Tinytheatre.

The season to go inward and take some satisfaction in the hearth fire (whatever that may be for you) in Northern Hemisphere. For myself, I tend towards cooking root vegetables and sewing.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Lives of the Saints: The Burden of Proof

Things which don't constitute proof (aka truth):
Deeply held convictions
Elegance of the Equation
Your dead Aunt Fanny's sugar cookie recipe

One draws one's own conclusion, the portrait you see is of necessity merely a sketch.

I like this set on flickr too.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010


The esteemed Lettuce introduced me to Robert Holdstock's Mythago Wood Series, in which people in rural England find themselves drawn into a dark wood. Beings from the collective unconscious mind appear first as flickers at the corner of the eye, before they completely manifest as creatures of ambiguous intent. Another t-shirt design...I actually need to stop with these and maybe do some Holiday cards. In the mean time, I'm considering this an entry for Illustration Friday's spooky prompt.

OOh, look, here is another one...

And a fir tree king on flickr..

Monday, October 18, 2010

We Can be Heroes?

What's "great"? Just had a disagreement with another blogger about a piece of [literature according to me, something else according to him]. There are books that are revelations when one is young, but which seem tedious when we are older. This is not, to me, because we're necessarily wiser, it's more about what we need from literature ... or any art form. I have enjoyed introducing young friends to On the Road, for instance, but were I to reread it now I think I would feel like kicking the narcissistic a***s of the characters. In art, as my vision has become fuzzier, I have lost interest in murky images. What lasts? And even if it doesn't last, can't something be great in its time and place? Is knowing when we are older more accurate or just different from that when we're young?*

*Lewis Carroll addressed some of these questions in You are Old, Father William, of course.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Small Potatoes

Hmmm...May not be my greatest work, or even t-shirt ever. It started out with my being irritated with AT & T (the phone company, for my friends in far-off places). This photo is wonderful though, don't you think? And I thought the film Mary and Max was delightful and surprising, just about as uplifting as downbeat can get.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Like a hug that goes with you everywhere

My nephew Robbie was visiting, we took a walk in the Mission District and saw this treetop in Clarion Alley

and this inside/outside at Dave Eggers' 826 Valencia.

Robbie posed more or less graciously,

framed this Felix-reminiscent wall art (we found the frame in a box on the street)

and took a picture of me holding up this beautiful scarf Yvette sent me...the title of the post comes from his response to my saying how much I enjoyed walking around with it. 

Thursday, October 7, 2010


Just watched "Doubt" and "Boys don't cry". Both good films, and both ask questions about how we know someone else - are those mirror neurons of the funhouse variety, or do they really allow us to see something about the other person? How much do we ordinarily take someone at their own valuation? "Boys don't cry"*, in particular, is remarkable for dividing the supporting characters after the big revelation, two characters in particular feel that their knowing goes deeper than what seems to be a major falsehood by the main character, and they continue in their feelings of affection. Does the lie reveal a truth? It was interesting to watch the two films in succession.

Strange moth, former moth really, I found on the sidewalk.

* This film could also be seen as an extended gloss on the Tom Waits song "Whistle down the Wind" - let's put it this way, it didn't leave me with any great desire to visit Lincoln, Texas (or Falls City, either).