Thursday, August 13, 2009

blogs, china and cool August blues

sweet smelling helliotrope

refreshing blue fuji morning glories

clematis flower with maiden hair fern

unique blue clematis flower

blue balloon flower

August is typically a very charged month for me and I wish we could have seen the Perseid Meteor showers this week. DC had clouds, rain and of course, way too much urban light pollution but they are saying it was a unusually big show for those with the right viewing conditions.
Surfing around Twitter I discovered an English artist's work that just blew me away it is so inspiring. Her name is Esther Coombs and she draws with a china paint marker on old "unloved" china and pottery. Esther combines her great black line drawing and good design eye to make charming new things out of old everyday items which give them swiftly add new life. I want to share some of her work with you and the best way is to send you over to one of her Internet homes. She has a web page, blog, Etsy shop, and a flickr photo page. Click on any of those links to go see a little of what I am dreaming about.
I liked her collaboration with a poet to do a cup and saucer image illustrating a short pros fiction which she displays on her blog about women traveling on trains. It is at once modern and hip but using old stuff has added to that environmentally friendly practice of recycling and reusing.
Last night at the Brookland Area Writers and Artist's poetry reading an artist military mother came and asked for donations to an art/poetry show exhibiting collaborating poets and artists to raise money for military families at the area military hospitals. Her laureled poet son asked to be remembered this way before he died on a mission in Iraq. This show is at Lorton the former prison "work house" south of Washington DC in Virginia that is developing into an artist studios and performance space. While she was telling her story I couldn't help thinking about Esther Coomb's story of her a son in the garden shed from her blog and how she used a drawing of her garden shed on a jug to tell why it had significance to her, more than met the eye. Read the short story and see the pot on this post by Esther. After I discovered Esther's work I went out in the garden and took photos with the intention of drawing some of my plants to see if I could do what Esther does. So far not much has come of out of that exercise but some pretty blue flower shots. We have a lovely garden full of color even now in the deep summer which has been cooler than normal but still pretty stuffy up in the second floor apartment under a black tar roof. My next favorite color beside orange is the color opposite orange on the color wheel blue. I find purple and orange work nicely together as a book color combo. I am working steadily binding books with the lower temperatures but mostly in the mornings.

This weekend I am going for a treat to take a day long refresher workshop at Pyramid Atlantic Studios in Silver Spring, Md. on how to use the cold metal type presses. The cold metal letters have to be set in the press facing backwards always a challenge for a dyslexic like me and always worth the effort. I am looking forward to this day of working in the print shop again. I hope to do some more printing of poems in collaboration with my poet friends from Brookland.

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