Saturday, May 31, 2008

For Me, Today is Mardi Gras!

Finally found the doubloon that I knew I had - somewhere. No glue used, so if I ever want to remove it, it won't be damaged. Took me a while (life does have a way of getting in the way for me recently) but it's finally done.

I wanted to capture some of the flavor of New Orleans. Mo' is betta.

New Orleans is one of my favorite places in the world. It is truly the city that care forgot.

While I have never experienced the craziness of Mardi Gras day itself, I have seen a couple of early in the season Mardi Gras parades and a funeral procession. New Orleans has a completely different mindset.

My heart broke for her and for the citizens of New Orleans and the Gulf Coast when the U. S. Government failed them after Katrina.

So, on the last day of May, I have finished February's piece and I promise myself that I will finish the last three. This will not be another incomplete project.

Today's quote comes from Allen Toussaint: To get to New Orleans you don't pass through anywhere else. That geographical location, being aloof, lets it hold onto the ritual of its own pace more than other places that have to keep up with the progress.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

A Nearly Unbelievable Reason to Be Late to Work

Was late for work today - not my fault, really.

There was a car parked across my driveway this morning that turned out to be stolen.

I took a picture just in case (I'm not one to use excuses for tardiness or missing work) my boss didn't believe me.

The parking enforcement office (Number 32, no name) called to tell me that she'd give me a copy of the citation for an excuse if I needed it. While I thought that was nice of her to offer, I also thought it was kind of funny... Should have taken her up on her offer.

My boss thought it was really funny and said that I was awfully creative! (It's not easy to make him laugh - not getting his sense of humor yet...)

Today's quote comes from Oscar Wilde: Moderation is a fatal thing. Nothing succeeds like excess.

Thoughts on the Beaded Journal Project

Working hard to get February's page done before the official end of the Beaded Journal Project.

While I enjoyed the project and the challenges it provided for me, I think I'll opt out of the next one. I learned a lot and I've grown as an artist, but it's time to try something else for a while.

Have consistently felt like I was 3 or 4 months behind. I've always had a problem with procrastination. Never really liked deadlines although that seems to be all I do at work is to push paper off my desk and move on to the next pile.

I've missed doing bead weaving and I don't think I've really done any since last fall which is far too long for me.

I also owe blogging to the BJP. I had always wanted to blog before the project, but didn't know where to start. Thanks, BJPers and friends for your support. I have found my voice.

I am (once I get some of the piles of paperwork off my desk) looking forward to the Bead and Button Show next week, but I don't have the same anticipation that I have had in years past. Maybe if I had to travel to go to the show it'd feel different.

I am signed up for two classes - one with Robert Dancik that I'm really looking forward to and a bead weaving class with Doris Coghill.

Today's quote comes from Helen Keller: Avoiding danger is no safer in the long run than outright exposure. The fearful are caught as often as the bold.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Pittsburgh, PA

Took a short trip out to Pittsburgh last week. Really, really cool town and I enjoyed it once I figured out how to navigate it's angled streets.

The people there are nice and they don't honk at out of towners. It's a city of neighborhoods, each one with it's own flavor.

It is NOT a smoggy, smelly steely town. Far from it. Lots of interesting architecture and they are celebrating 250 years as a settlement. I've got to go back soon - I didn't even get to the Warhol Museum!

The house on the right is the home of a Chinese dissident who has written poetry all over his house and the one on the left is The Tom Museum which I just found out is closing - should have gone in when I had a chance, darn it all!

Around the block was the Mattress Factory, an installation art gallery that I enjoyed quite a bit.

There were some dinosaurs scattered around town - I liked this mirrored one in PPG Square.

A couple of hours southeast of the city is Frank Lloyd Wright's Falling Water. It is an amazing home and the terraces must be beautiful when it's not raining.

You're always surrounded by Friends here...
A graveyard in the middle of nowhere, with no road to get to it. It was in the middle of a very large field near the Maryland border.

Today's quote comes from Pittsburgh native Andy Warhol: An artist is someone who produces things that people don't need but that he - for some reason - thinks it would be a good idea to give them.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Spring Flowers After a Rain

Too bad that so many of the spring flowers only last a week or so around here.

Been forcing myself to work on beading, which hasn't been easy lately - life has been getting in the way again.

Today's quotation comes from William Faulkner: People need trouble - a little frustration to sharpen the spirit on, toughen it. Artists do; I don't mean you need to live in a rat hole or gutter, but you have to learn fortitude, endurance. Only vegetables are happy.

And one more from Goethe: What does not kill me makes me stronger.

And to round it out, another from Goethe: We do not have to visit a madhouse to find disordered minds; our planet is the mental institution of the universe.