Tuesday, August 31, 2010

The worm is still going strong

There are not only dragons. There is also a Bavarian relative. This time again as an ink drawing on paper. I made a few versions of the same topic, something I rarely did in the past. Is it better to develop a motif or does it contain the risk to get bored and drop the project?
What do you think, how do you work? I used to get bored easily, but not this time. I have plans. Wait and see.
The easiest way to transform it is to color the scene, be it by hand or electronically. I'll try both methods. Then it will possibly go on to be transferred to fabric, either drawn/painted, lino-cut (problem: almost no room for printing) or another easy but more expensive way: To be sent to Spoonflower. A large choice! -- The embroidery got stuck somehow. Too many plans, maybe!

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Buddhas in Exile

Why are my statues waiting out on the balcony? Together with banal things like a clothes hanging rack? It's because their shrine is being exchanged. A new one is being built up by my dear husband. What would I do without him? He should be able to build up a furniture like this, because his job is customer service in a furniture store. -- Last night we were on a party, seeing dear friends. There were so many people with at least 30 kids. It was an outdoor party at 55° F. There was a tent with a gas heater, but this tent was open at 3 sides, so our legs got a little cold. But later, the host made a fire in a steel basket, so we stood around the fire like homeless people around an old gas barrel. The food was delicious, the musik was too loud to have a conversation, so some people had fun. I enjoyed most of all sitting near the fire. Until his morning we smelled like charcoal burners.
Here is the built-up "shrine" in the shop:

And the finished setup on Sunday afternoon.

Friday, August 27, 2010

The Dragons get started

Cushion finished. Back: Turquoise shibori-like print fabric. Hand quilted front. Color suitable for the bedroom. Dragon fabric available here.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

The youngest of our Family

As I posted after the weekend, we saw my niece and her husband (the invisible person in the striped shirt) and welcomed young Bente. My brother has four children, and he is a granddad of four, soon they will be five. Three of his children don't live with him, only the youngest one does.
The young mother and her family live in my brother's house in the village I showed before, in an old farmhouse, built about 150 years ago. My brother does all the renovation work in it. He also does the gardening. My sister-in-law is a teacher. It takes us about an hour to get there, so unfortunately we don't meet often enough.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

The Living and the Dead of Altona

Today, I took a walk through the quarter I once lived in, and as I passed the jewish cemetary, I took a few photos from outside it which you can see in a little galery. A number of these show tombstones in roof shape, indicating the Portuguese origin of the persons they remind us of, as the wealthy and generous Abraham Texeira. He had the St.Michael's church roof done all in copper without sending a bill to the Hamburg administration, and he put Queen Christiane of Sweden up in his house during her visit.
There was another benefactor of our town, Salomon Heine, the uncle of the poet Heinrich Heine. He generously helped the town after the great fire of 1842. He also donated a hospital. The building still exists and is an office where people can apply for social welfare.
My town was a very, very ungrateful one.

Just a few meters on, there is our "sinful mile", the Reeperbahn. Here endeth my walk.

Monday, August 23, 2010


The heavenly dragons are drifting east after sunset. The same color dominates on a fabric I designed and ordered from Spoonflower. As it is a lighter weight, I prepare it for being a cushion top by quilting the surface with a shining Turkish nylon thread on top of a supporting cloth.

An Afternoon in the Garden

J and I went to see my brother yesterday. His daughter Irina and her husband Andy who got married in March have a lovely little daughter. Bente was born 18 days ago. She is adorable! Rather small and delicate, but she has a good temper and doesn't cry more than necessary. I gave my niece a necklace of vintage glass beads with an Estonian silver ornament. I attached it to the necklace. It used to be a brooch, but it broke when I was around 50. I had another, and it broke at more or less the same time. Funny! I did not find anyone to repair it. Here, you can see a very big version of this kind of ornament; mine was a 2" device.
Recently, I read that these ornaments were worn by women only during their age of fertility. Maybe this is why they broke, and also my Mom had a broken one...
We also had a look into my brother's garden and he gave us some of his Russian tomatoes. These are miniature! You can see my thumb. And in his greenhouse, he has a big yellow sort, they are huge! He got tomato seeds from Russia, there they are still very tasty and not bred to death as our Netherlands devices. And here you see the "Purple Russian" -- hm. Brown is an ugly word.
We got at least a pound of his homegrown veggies to take along. He grows lovely "La Ratte" potatoes, red beet, cabbage, peaches, and grapes.
We had coffee in the garden and enjoyed the company of my folks which happens too rarely.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

The Tatzelwurm Invasion is on

Here is a nosy red one, not yet finished. This time, the flower is a lotus. I started a try on a print: I made a drawing with ink and a brush and scanned it. I printed the drawing out in black and white, and now I have something I can color with pencils, so it is a print and an original drawing at the same time:
Or I can use water colors.
What do you think? Do you see such a mixture of print and coloring as an original?

In order to play, I can color that thing in the good old electronic way with PhotoShop:

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Nocturnal Garden with Visitor

Plants and sky are finished.
The next one will be on a white ground because I think I'll try another fabric design or t-shirt. For cloth printing, the black background is a disadvantage.
Painting plants on a dark ground reminds me of nights under trees. Plants breathe like plants at day-time, but like animals during the night, consuming oxygen, as we do; could it be they sleep at day and are awake at night?

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

A basket full of Diskettes...

My technical museum is being renovated. That's what keeps me from making art at the moment. I opened all these disks, my old archive (I deeply dislike cds, they are an evironmental pest) had to be given up, my new computer doesn't have a disk drive, of course. However I used to be very fond of this medium. In 1988 when I started working with it, it was a very practical and sufficient store medium. A number of boxes waited to be revisited. I had to look what is inside and save it to a modern stick. It contains my collection of vector graphic decoration which I created in the 90s. I made drawings like this by the dozen and sometimes used them, sometimes just made them for pleasure. I stored them and other things like business letters and my first digital photos on these diskettes. The complete collection of data is on this small stick now. Almost weird.
And it is not environment-friendly to dump all these diskettes. I had to break them to make sure they will not be read again. At least I will take them to a place where they will be recycled properly.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

"A Rose is a Rose is a Rose",

said the Tatzelwurm. Now we know why there is such an expression on his face. And we understand that some who are believed to be monsters have a very fine sense for the beautiful things in life. And maybe they are not even monsters.
The painting is not finished yet. Progress is slow due to so many tasks in between.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Long Silence

So many boring things to be done and nothing to be shown! I cleared some mess in my studio, not a job to say much about. We went out to buy a printer, a black&white laser printer; you might wonder why an artist doesn't have a color printer--it is too tempting. I would print out things I don't really need, and with a shock realize that another set of inks has to be purchased...
My old printer was 14 years old, still working, but not properly. He wasn't able to draw single pages from the paper tray. If I gave him 20 sheets, he would munch them all at a time, choke and collapse. And he isn't compatible with my new computer, of course. He was a brave quality printer that cost 600 $ when he was new. Rest in pieces.
It is midnight, we just watched a DVD, "Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil." Now, a very tired husband is having a nap on the sofa.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

No Stitching Today

This weekend, I can't go on stitching because of a little cut in my finger, very small though, it will be gone tomorrow. It's okay because it made me paint this: I took a sheet of my beloved black paper and started another tatzelwurm in gouache.
On Saturday, we took a walk in one of the lovely parks in our town. The scene with the artificial lake is very picturesque. In this pavillion, they can buy drinks or rent a boat, there is a public pool, and after its is closed down, people swim in the lake.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

New Start

Most programs are installed on my new computer, some don't work on the new system; scanner and printer have to be dumped. I was online very soon again, but it takes me some time to get aquainted with the new system.
I tried some more on the pale turtle. As Melody (Fibermania) once put it: I'm underwhelmed. I thought I surround the Tatzelwurm with creatures in subdued colors; but I think it is just darn boring. To look at and to stitch it. What do you think? But please be honest, don't try to save what I intend to kill! --- Flowers: In my f-i-l's pond.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Dim Turtle

What if I let the other creatures appear as very dim silhouettes or just outlines? True, as Susan said in her comment, it would not be bad to let the feature of the tatzelwurm be more or less undisturbed. I'll try to surround him by fish and turtles in very subdued, light shades, maybe just white, or mere outline -- I have to try what works best. Your opinion is welcome.
Today, my new computer arrived. My friend Anna who is very experienced with building up configurations will help me to reconnect. So hopefully I won't be offline for too long!
Wonder why all the computers are black nowadays. That old grey wasn't beautiful either; but entirely black... why not blue, pink or green? Yes, light green should be prescribed for offices.
See ya!

Update: Ha! I'm back. On a new computer. The old one was 10 years old. Tantalizing slowness!

Monday, August 2, 2010

Blue Port

Saturday night after the movies ("Inception" with L. de Caprio. Fascinating. What do you think?) we took a walk to the harbour which was looking quite different from normal, due to the "Cruise Days" and the art project "Blue Port". The above pic was taken at 8 sec shutter speed.
The artist had started with the project "Blue Goals" during the World Championship in 2006, set up on the lake Alster and on many buildings in the city. This was welcomed by the public with enthusiasm, so he was invited to do more light projects like the 1st "Blue Port" in 2008, not yet as embracing as this year.
We walked around until 2 am, had a drink at the pier and enjoyed the view.
Below: The same view at daylight.

For Susan's collection

Also trees love to jump into a river.
Taken near the Oyapinar barrage in Turkey.
It is not really a face, although definitely showing cheeks.

A whale's eye:

... or is it a frog?