Thursday, February 25, 2010

Point and Line to Plane

The strips are sewn together. It is a quilt top now. The title of my posting refers to Vassily Kandinsky's book on the basic elements of painting. The strips are not equal in length! I still have a lot to do on them. I removed the things around the quilt because of the color clash between the living room wall and the quilt, I made it for the bedroom which is white and orange.
Another orange thing on our table. From Oranje. 1000 days old cheese. Very piquant. I have always been fond of  this delicacy, and twice it was dumped by a flatmate of mine, once by my ex-husband, each time because they thought it had gone bad. J shares my liking.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Spring Footage?

Although the ground is still covered with ice and snow, there is a first sign of spring: The starlets are back. They must have been more than surprised to see the landscape they come back to. The geese are having rivalties, and the way they interact won't tell if the big one is bullying a smaller one or if it is mating play. Obviously also the grey goose felt a member of the group and kept backing them.
This picture is blurry, shot in a second when these heavy birds buzzed off. It is a miracle that they do fly.
There are no other signs of spring yet. The only color is the burning red of these shrub stems. It is still cold, just a bit above freezing temperatures. But it was so good to get out of the cabin just for an hour. It is possible to walk again, and I felt like a young lamb leaving the stable for the first time.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Our Evening pleasure

Reading loud to my husband is my latest evening pleasure. We decided to break free from the TV dictatorship and do something that makes an evening last longer. Of course, I read it in German. The translation seems to be very good and preserves the irony which is very hard to do in German. Our language is well able to express it, but there is a feature about my home country's mentality that makes it difficult to practise the English sense of humor. I wonder if this is all that popular in America.
In my parents' Baltic home, there was something similar to English humor. It was a sophisticated game to perform debates (possibly similar to Jewish tradition) in which attacks had to be carried out in a way that was to hit but not to hurt, the rule was to remain fair and polite, and retaliation had to be similar, possibly even the better joke; and showing that you are offended meant that you lost the match.
Okay. Back to literature. We saw the movie and were very sorry that it will not be continued. I heard that there was protest from the Catholic church and boycott; we are eager to find out the reason.
I rarely read novels. But this one really got me, and I can't wait to read the next chapter to my cheering audience.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Dwelling on details

There is no point in looking out of my windows. Snowsnowsnow.
The focus is on the detail. I'm working on the bauhaus quilt for Jens. The final measure of 1.30x1.85 meters/ 73x51" is reached. One more strip to quilt, and I can arrange them for sewing the top. Who else would quilt a whole bed quilt before sewing it? Form follows function, haha. It is double work, because when I have basted and backed the quilt, I'll have to do another quilting. I was thinking about the tie method, but my customer decided against that. So I'll do a wide stitch quilting, letting the thread run inside the quilt from stitch to stitch.
The details are simple. Not much decoration to be done. The overall impression will make it.

I don't go out much. Melting ice at day, frost at night causes surprises on the sidewalks. I can't remember the snow to have been this deep since winter 1978/79.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Giants die hard

This tree was taken down because it was getting too large. It is a poplar, and these are said to be breaking easily. Administration are very worried about trees or branches to fall on cars or people -- so they have to prevent even smaller risks. But it seems as if this tree's time to die hadn't come yet; the rope slipped twice when they tried to pull that trunk down, and the guy had to get back on the lift again and again to fasten it.

This is the last one of the highest branches. I expect the feng shui of the place to change in some way when the high trees are gone. It was a protection against the north, I think; but what is worst: When chopped branches are left in the shrubs, the place looks messy, and this way invites illegal dumping. I hope that nature repairs the surrounding.
This was my view out of the kitchen window, taken one morning when the sun dyed the tree. I'll miss it.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Dreamkeeper -- my Valentine for J

This will be the only part of my bauhaus quilt that contradicts the style. I just couldn't help using the old cuff from my husband's shirt with two buttons, looking at me suggestively. You may find that also the surrounding red cloth doesn't fit into the whole thing. This is my base fabric on which I build up the quilt top in a Korak technique. And as this story telling bit reminds of Jude's work, I used her magic thread for the face. Horns or ears? Is this suitable for a Valentine quilt? Too bad I can't finish it today. But J likes warm covers, so this one won't even be wrong in summer. And then, right in the middle, there will be this devilish watchdog biting away all the bad dreams.
I know it works.

Happy Valentine to all of you! Have a day full of love.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

No more boring winter photos...

... that's what I thought. But out of an old habit, I took my camera, when we went to see our friend U.
She was my HTML teacher when I went to a web design school. We kept loose contact, then this contact became a friendship. Now, she's arranging her new flat. And she had problems with the new shelf she had taken home in her car and couldn't manage to get the parcels out of her car. She just moved into a tiny village and doesn't know anyone yet. So we went to her and J helped her unloading the stuff, then we had tea, and I took a picture through the windows. Apart from these pictures, I'm fed up with taking photos of the white heaps around us. The snow just won't go away, and more is coming all the time.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Over the top

Lost in watercolor. Small painting on computer generated grid, 8x10". Was I going too far? I spent a few hours at night, listening to the late music show and jazz.
My cabin fever turns inward.
This painting is called "Quilty feelings".
I could save a lot of time by filling in the grid cells in the graphic program, but somehow I hate it.
Next step will be to create larger cells.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Let there be color

Bringing color into our lives is an urgent task. Now that Washington DC is flooded with loads of snow. I'm working on the issue of the radiant pyramid. This is not a finished picture; I mirrored the finished half in order to give you an impression of the plan.
I used a triangle grid which I created on my computer and printed out on watercolor paper.

Oh, forget the boring things I wrote on our winter! I just heard that the East of the USA is being afflicted by a blizzard. Hope you are all unter cozy roofs with well-filled fridges, and remain online.

Due to our climate, temperatures move around the freezing point all the time, up at days, down at night. The roads get sanded, that's a matter of safety, and so should the ways for pedestrians. House owners are under strict obligation to sand their paths in front of their houses.
On public walks, the situation is different.
I have to cross spaces of blank ice. 4 years ago, I fell on the ice and had a ligament rupture which meant I had to wear a support for 6 weeks. As I don't drive, I walk vast spaces -- if possible. Now, I'm under arrest.
I guess I'll have all food from the supermarket sent home to me until the ice melts.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Playing with color

Ha! I made a grid on my computer, using a graphic program, and play with the filling function. I printed it out without colors and will try some more water color versions. The skewed drawing is nice in a way; but I want to try something with straight lines.
And here is something for the eye before I cooked it. An eggplant with white stripes.

I don't see them often. My ginger seems to ask for a pot and soil. I tried to grow one, looks quite nice, but nothing to harvest, I don't know the trick, it seems.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

The bauhaus quilt -- how far it got

I haven't bothered much to find the best combination. These strips are ready sewn and quilted. The only way to vary them is to exchange complete strips, but I like better to let coincidence do a lot of the arrangement job. Some work with intuition. I limit my choice right from the start and have to live with what happens.
The quilt is bed width already, but not length yet. There are 3 or 4 more strips to come. Initially, I intended to give it a black frame and a turquoise inner frame, but I'm lacking material for the frame and I think it will look more like a traditional quilt and not like bauhaus if I make a frame. I want it to look more like a Paul Klee picture.
As I don't have a wall to put it on, it is lying on the living room carpet, I hope you can ignore that.

I gave it a title: "Ida's sleep", because it was Ida Kerkovius who made a similar quilt of felt in the 1920ies.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Back to that project

Wonder if this quilt will warm my husband still in this winter. Stitching doesn't seem to harm my wrist as long as I wear this protective glove. I found out that without it I would twist my left wrist and bend it to a degree that must have been too much. The right hand, although holding the needle, remains less active.
I used parts of my husband's shirt with buttons. Through being worn, clothes preserve some of their wearers' story, it seems. (Who knows this better than Jude?) I have always sensed this since our old clothes were used in woven rugs in my childhood.
It is fascinating to integrate other people's story into one's projects, too.
Yet I like to know who they are; I probably would hesitate to use worn clothes from unknown persons, even though washed or dry-cleaned.

It is still snowing heavily. It is a lot darker than it looks, I took this picture at 1/60 sec. I'm glad that the supermarket is just around the corner. I'm a little timid about walking over ice.

To give life some more color, I painted another watercolor. It looks pretty skewed and crooked; I will give that motif another try.
The title: "Radiant Pyramid".
The wheel of inner energies sends out joy. May it send them to you!