Monday, August 11, 2014

Essential Packing.....

I am getting ready to go spend a bit of time with my parents. My preferred way to travel from Colorado to northern California is on Amtrak's California Zephyr. It is almost door-to-door from my house to my parents, but it takes almost 24 hours. I enjoy the time on the train. I read, I sketch, I rest, I knit, and I even occasionally watch a movie, after it gets too dark to watch the scenery roll by.

So, as I do my laundry and fill my suitcase, I am also doing my more essential packing. I have gathered my knitting needs for some simple mindless knitting: in this case, I'm taking a stockpile of cotton and instructions for various knit washcloths. I really enjoy using handknit washcloths, and I like to knit a pile of them between more ambitious projects. (Note my skein of yarn in the tall cleaned Starbucks cup, with the tail coming out the enlarged straw hole. Thank you Pinterest for this clever idea!)

I also have my sketchbook and sketching materials packed: two very small boxes with watercolors in them (an Altoids box, and a fly fishing box, each with a selection of watercolors inside), a couple of waterbrushes, a pencil and an eraser, my fountain pen, a white gel pen, a roll of tape, and some multicolored pencils and a sharpener. All fits inside a 9x6" canvas bag.

Now that I have these things gathered and packed, I suppose I should turn my mind to the rest of my packing needs... like maybe a few changes of clothes and a toothbrush and comb. First thing first, and now that I have dealt with the 'first things' I guess I can deal with the rest.....

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Another Studio Tuesday....

Another week, another Studio Tuesday!  It has been a bit hard to weave lately, but you can see that I have made a good bit of progress  on the 'April' tapestry.

The reason it's been hard to weave is that we've been having a rather active monsoon season here, and Booker (who is not allowed in the studio) is terrified of thunder. So I've been spending a lot of time knitting washclothes on the basement sofa with him, especially in the afternoons. We actually had a record breaking rain here yesterday afternoon, and I had to wade through about 7 inches of water to get to my truck after my guitar lesson! My shoes are still soggy! (Everyone asks me why I didn't take them off, but I wasn't sure what was in that water, and I'd rather let my shoes dry out -which may take awhile- than have to deal with glass or rock cuts on my feet.)

This is a painting I did of one of my 'grand-dogs,' Zooey. She is an Italian Greyhound mix, and can have quite the imperious look, occasionally.... especially when she decides to claim either your lap or the seat you are heading to sit in for her 'throne.' I decided I needed to paint her on a throne-like chair. as she is a bit of a Diva in my son's home. She was fun to paint. The painting is 12 inches square, oil on canvas, and it is now at Zoey's home, so she can admire herself whenever she chooses.

I have one more 'studio Tuesday' before I go visit my parents for awhile in California, to celebrate with them their 67th wedding anniversary. I would truly love to get the tapestry done before I leave, but I also would like to have a 'cutting off' for it, so that may need to wait until I return home at the end of the month. I'll get as close as I can to the end, though, before I leave home.

Friday, August 1, 2014

Blackbird singin' in the Dead of Night.....

Only he's not singin' and it's not the dead of night. Otherwise.... well, it is a blackbird, or a tapestry blackbird, at least. He is, however, in this tapestry because of that Beatles song. It is one of the most complex and fun songs I have learned to play on my guitar, so I  spent a lot of time with it about a year ago, and I still go back and play it frequently. The part I play is the fingerpicking part that is immediately recognizable as "Blackbird," the part Paul McCartney plays. Only, of course, I do not play it quite as well as he does! (Nor do I play it left-handed.)