Riding in the Sidecar

It the beginning of 2018 and I’m watching my partner stand-up and step into the local arts community to fill a roll. Jessica has taken the helm of the Elsie May Goodwin Gallery as its Gallery Director. Honestly, I’m proud that she feels that serving the community is a task worth doing, and I’m more than slightly impressed that she’s got the stamina, intelligence, and vision to actually engage with an established group and quickly begin to make the transformative changes needed to keep our community gallery up and running. 

This is a nice way to start the year.


Christmas Hare

Ended the year on working on the dinning room table in collaboration with the kids and Jess. 

Andor drew up the design. I cut the block. Jess printed it, and Nico inked in the background.

It feels pretty neat getting seeing a project like this roll all the way through to completion. Now on to the next one.

Habanero Slaw

This is a no bullshit, no mayo, no whining slaw.  
It’s easy to make and keeps well enough for a two or three days (but usually it doesn’t last past the first round of leftovers. It’s just gone. We use it for dressing burgers and for topping any tacos that are coming out of the kitchen. The habanero adds a pinch of heat, but it’s mostly used for flavor. All the house guests give it two enthusiastic thumbs up.
1 habanero finely diced (use latex gloves if you have em, (seriously))

1 shallot onion finely diced

2 cloves of garlic finely diced 

1/2 a head of cabbage finely shredded

A dash of olive oil

Dash of salt

Put half the shredded cabbage in the bottom of a deep bowl. Add the dices materials and salt. Toss. Add oil, toss, and add the remaining cabbage before quickly tossing one more time. 

It’s ready.

Playing With the Boy

Andor drew it. I’m attempting to cut it.

The block is done. We’ll press it tomorrow and see how it reads in reverse. Unfortunately I’ve gotten used to seeing it facing this way, (I’ve been suspecting that there’s a phycological underpinning that preferences which direction the movement of a composition flows. What do you think?) in my imagination, seeing the rabbit facing the other direction makes me reevaluate my enthusiasm and look toward the next project.

Cut cut Slice slice

It’s been a long week of impatient daydreams while heeding leaves. It’s an all day job that lasts from October to December, (one of the few downsides to being a gardener on a university campus filled with trees). The daydreams this week has been preoccupied by playing with linoleum blocks. It’s been refreshing to just learn something brand new. 

Linoleum block set up with the image transferred using graphite paper to trace the design onto the block. The lines have been reinked with a sharpie and then the whole block has been given a coat of red India ink.

Do I have unrealistic expectations? Yep, but for now, those are pinned up on a board. This week, it’s just been about getting a design down, start making cuts, and seeing what works, and more importantly, what doesn’t.

The black lines are what stays and the red shows us our cuts. If everything is left the color of the linoleum, it’s difficult(ish) to see the cuts that need to happen.
I’m enjoying that last part in particular, it’s the glow of the new relationship feeling that you get when everything really is new, it lets even failure feel like you’re moving forward and doing something meaningful. 
A computer printer copy is being used to key up the next block. The outline will be used to print the bones.

Cut, cut… Slice, slice

When registered properly, this block can fill in the bone outline. A separate block needs to be done for each color in the print. Easy right?

I’m keeping in mind a simple lesson that Jess pointed out to me earlier this week that applies to learning something new. If you are going to do something, commit to it. Even if you feel silly doing it, (especially if you look silly doing it) your commitment shows. Sometimes, it’s your commitment that is applauded and appreciated, not the results… and most of the time, that’s all that we really need.

Finished test print. I have to admit, the heart was filled in with a sharpie.


Take Away

What’s missing in this picture? 

Our kiln. We dismantled it two months ago in prep for the landlord taking this tree out, now it’s finally happening! 

We’re not making any plans that actually involve firing yet though. The tree men informed us that they won’t be hauling off the wood. The landlord told them that he was going to haul it all off himself later… I don’t think we’ll have access to firing anytime soon.

What’s the take away? It might be time to make a switch in the media that we invest our daydreams in.

Screening in Rather than Screening Out

Being yourself by doing more of what interests you is a sieve.

 We all come to the arts saying “Surprise me please”. Live up to the challenge! It’s a treasure hunt.  Let the sieve do its work. It doesn’t need to be about looking to see who got screened out, let your audience find you. I’m looking for who got screened in.

ps. It takes less energy to be myself and grow than it does to make myself into someone that I’m not. 

Where’s Waldo?

I am a Hermit crab. My shell defines me… My home, where I live, the people I see everyday, are more familiar to me than my own face. I reflect what I see and I become what I reflect. I am a Hermit crab.

My son is 3 weeks into a 5 week workshop at Arcosonti, a community in the Sonoran desert. It’s an experience that has special meaning to me because I spent 7 years at its sister site, Cosanti, working as a technical foundry artisan for Polo Solari. It was formitave to say the least… Design, aesthetics, social philosophy, substance abuse, friendships, marriage… eventually the first critter (the one that’s now sunk back into it all) fun stuff. I wore that place like a shell and I’ve carried it with me for 2 decades, I can’t help but wonder how it’ll effect him…