The weather was so pleasant I walked to the park and sat for a while painting. The spring weather also means fresh pollen and active plants, and I had to yield to the repetitive sneezing after a while.
A year ago, I started this project and made almost no progress on it. Since I have a secret project going on right now, I’ll share this one instead.
If you’ve never heard of an ophthalmic migraine, you’re lucky. They are visual accompaniments to migraines, with or without the debilitating headache, sometimes it is merely a bad headache. Like a Charley horse for your eye. They last for around 20-30 minutes, on average and can be quite distracting. They start with a blind spot around the center of your vision, as if you’d looked at the sun or caught a flash of bright light. They grow over the duration, spreading outward in your vision, like a moving frame of visual garbage. The descriptions range from each person, as you can imagine, but the summary is a section of your field of view is replaced with lines, with spikes, of color flashing, moving, wild alternations. Most people regain central vision mostly as the frame grows out, finally with the frame growing completely out of your vision.
The first time I had one, I was concerned, but since I was already developing a migraine, it made sense that this was part of it. Afterwards, some research confirmed this, I’ve had a number over the past few years and generally know how they are going to go.
But if you have one, you should see your doctor to be safe. At least see your eye doctor to make sure you don’t have some other, very serious, time sensitive issue – like a creature growing in your eyeball that will blind you and then eat your brain.
All that aside, I was playing with some fabric scraps one day and thought it would be interesting to see if I could recreate that visual disturbance of an ophthalmic migraine in fabric. This is the first test block for what I hope I can grow into an Ophthalmic Migraine Quilt. The center and edges are a cream tulle, to represent the mostly okay view you still have while the frame is active. I’m going to call it a frame, go with it. The little, contrasty combinations are right, but they don’t cover the light flashing or movement. Yet. Most of the arbitrary sections seem to cycle around withing their space. I’m going to add translucent sequins and sparkly beads, too. That might help. Maybe I’ll add LEDs and some light strips. Maybe that is too much.
It is difficult to make this visual translation and I’ll enjoy the challenge. Perhaps this will be a spring quilt to make.
This was the fun project I worked on this weekend. The other project was less fun, since I haven’t gotten it right yet. But I will.
This is Nora watching the recent snow:
Not much, but a little cat for you on a Friday.
I am loath to throw out such pretty scraps as I have, so I cut them even smaller to be uniform:
And then spent a couple hours sorting them into teensy piles. Now they are a new supply for something different. Yea.
I’m playing in the workshop lately. Doing, playing, trying, but no productivity or finishing. That will come later, I think.
On Friday, I took a snow day. The roads were ice and I was cranky from overwork the whole week. I stayed home and in the morning I decided to play with the sewing machine and the scraps crammed up under my cutting board. That thing collects so many bits! Anyway, I chose the blue bits and came up with these six little blocks. They’re each about 3″sq. Don’t know what they’ll become, but for now, they exist.
I think my sewing machine might have a name. I hear the whispers sometimes.
This poor Scrappy Cat is finally at 100%. He’s been watching over my work area for months now.
This Scrappy Cat has a split personality and he wants the other half GONE! He abuses Adderall as a sleep deprivation tactic in a battle to silence his invisible friend/second personality, accompanied by a euphoric state of joy and excitement, hence the bloodshot eyes and too-wide grin.
Glad he finally had his internet debut.
When you use more than one medium in a piece, it becomes mixed media.
This sketch of a lilac-breasted roller uses water soluble markers, charcoal, graphite and white pastel on Stonehenge shaded paper. It was created as an ArtSnacks Challenge piece, which I enjoy the challenge part of. Not as exciting as last time, but still good to do for myself. It was more difficult than you might think to find good examples of roller prey in Somalia via photos on the internet. That said, all hail the internet!
First and most importantly, I have to say thank you to all my friends, who are so very supportive in so many ways. AmyKatt and Christina are at my figurative back, and helped gently push me into showing at an ArtWalk evening, whilst providing practical things like space, tables, walls, setup assistance and, literally, the brass tacks. Ymabean came and stayed for hours, helping me talk up my work with strangers, playing tag-in hostess, and being a fount of excitement and creative inspiration. Leialalani boosted the event on social media and followed through with an energetic visit and photography. Krisneener was unable to swing by, but texted her support. And finally, Dondee is one of those gifted people who constantly provides reinforcement, genuine compliments, appreciation, and at all times favors you with her endorsement and favor – she’s like the artistic fairy godmother you always wish you had.
One of the little sayings I live in my life is to fight your corner. Having friends like these in your corner makes it easier.
At my side, as always, was my gorgeous Slick. He is the one who climbed the ladder to tack all those quilts up and helped me haul things in and out of the car. He was no help with finding stray threads, and for the best of reasons. He said, ” I think the threads are part of it.” I know, he’s sweet.
I hadn’t seen my quilts all hung together like this and it incites me to make more, although I am currently trying to work with clay and get a feel for it, so sewing, carving, and claying with all have to share my creative time.
It has taken months on this, but I’ve finally started some clay work. In the past, I’ve done air-dry clay, polymer clay, paper clay and just about everything else in the world. Finally, I’m getting into proper pottery since Flydragon, a studio close to my house, has very reasonable firing fees, as well as our kiln we bought used years ago for a steal that gathers dust in our garage. I think I might be able to spruce it up and figure out how to use it. Maybe. Anyhow. With the new year, I’ve got an open creation schedule and started in. I’ve done a couple pinch bowls, a small formed box, and decided my next project should be a slab box.
So, I made a slab coffin. Hah. I like the old style toe-pincher boxes. Yes, I probably should have started with a simple four sided box. The angles were more challenging this way. Also, the rims look funny since it is a keyed lid – it will only fit one way, which I now realize is unnecessary because it is already a one way fit. But I think it will look cool when the finished lid curves over the skull carvings in the box side once it is done.
Besides that, I am participating in the local ArtWalk this month. For three hours, I will display many of my art quilts and some Scrappy Cats, cuffs, buttons, etc to the public at Flydragon Studio on the NW corner of W 17th St and O’Neil. If you’re not familiar with ArtWalk, it is a monthly (second Thr of each month) event when galleries, studios, or similar host and feature an artist, or two, for the evening. Some places have restaurant or food truck catering, too. Personally, I love it. Each month I get to run around downtown and see loads of new art and have the occasional snack and drink. Very nice. And now, I will be showing. We’ll see how the quilts look all hung up. I’ll be sure to take a few pictures for those of you who aren’t nearby.