Thursday, August 30, 2012

Hamsa Redux: More Stitching

 I am finally getting back to the hamsa for F.I.N.E.

It's been a while since I last worked on this piece.

I'm making progress and hope to get the stitching done over the course of this next week.

I need to get on to other things. Particularly, printing more weed fabrics before the end of fall.

Then I have to make design decisions about creating Weed Maps from those fabrics for the F.I.N.E. show coming up early next year.

Time is flying by...

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Mo(u)rning Glory: In Memory of Martha

Yesterday evening, I received a phone message from Joe, my friend, M's companion. He and M's daughters were going through her art notebooks and collages and wanted to know if M. had expressed her wishes to me about them.

My heart skipped a beat.

You see, I had not yet received the message that my dear friend, M...Martha had passed away very early on Friday morning.

I called Joe back and he let me know that early Thursday she had gone for another medical procedure related to her cancer. Afterwards, in a moment of extreme clarity, she let Joe know that she was tired and she was ready. About twelve hours later she slipped away.

Again, Joe expressed his desire for something to happen with her artwork. A tribute, a showing, a sharing of her collages... This was the activity that had given her great joy and had special meaning for her.

Although, still in shock about the news, I agreed that there should, at the very least, be an exhibit of her works in the library at my synagogue. She had been the librarian there for 17 years and together we spent 10 years mounting monthly exhibitions of fine art and craft work in the library. But in addition, there was her own church where she also volunteered her time to set up art exhibitions.

Art was her center.

I am extremely sad. I am missing my dear friend. I am missing our talks about art, our occasional lunches out, her encouraging words when my life seemed overloaded with obligations and out of balance. I am missing her many kindnesses.

Her funeral will be in the garden of her church, a final wish of hers, according to Joe. This seems appropriate, as she loved all nature, but particularly the essential beauty of flowers.

When I was searching for an appropriate photo for this post, I happened upon a photo I'd taken of a Morning Glory. The center seemed to be a beam of spiritual light...and I knew somehow that this photo expressed what I imagined for her.

I looked up the meaning of the Morning Glory flower. The flower is the symbol of affection, but also the symbol of death and rebirth as each flower blooms in the early morning and fades away as the day progresses. But each day brings new blooms, new life.

I am imagining Martha in a heavenly garden of flowers with colors that sing and vibrate with intensity. I imagine her full of curiosity and joy, without pain or worry. I imagine her gathering bouquets of color and creating artworks that fly off the page and into the sky where she and the colors dance and play.

Friday, August 24, 2012


Tomorrow, my son, Aaron is off to start his senior year at college. Where have the years gone? These college years have flown by...

Aaron's favorite cargo shorts are a bit in tatters.

I agreed to do a little mending...

Somehow, it seemed the motherly thing to do.

I'm going to miss having him around.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

This month's Roy winner is...

The winner of this month's Roy G Biv fabric is:

Congratulations, Ersi!
Please contact me at with your mailing address.

Just a reminder:
Issue #4 of Julie B Booth Surface Design News will be coming out next Saturday, August 25 at 8:00 AM Eastern USA time. If you'd like to sign up, see the sign up box in the top of the right hand column. There is also an archive of past issues of the newsletter, if you'd like to catch up on the News.

I'll be off teaching this week. An overnight in Bel Air, Maryland and a workshop teaching a small group of weavers about resists on fabric using some common household materials.

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Savannah Greens

I'm on the last leg of my journey back to Northern Virginia.

Yesterday, I escorted my parents back from our Maine trip down to their home in Savannah.

So, this morning's walk included some Savannah greens.

The Roy G Biv Challenge continues through today until midnight, USA eastern time.

Friday, August 17, 2012

After the Storm

A strong storm last night.

An early morning walk on the beach with Robbin.

Sharing thoughts about and experiences with aging parents.

Decisions need to be made, but for now...

 ...taking in the beauty etched and tossed by the storm.

 (GREEN is still going on until Saturday August 18 midnight)

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Searching for Roy G Biv Challenge: GREEN

Some GREEN brought to you from Maine:

And the Challenge Fabric...

Printed with carved turnip and green pepper

To join in the fun just post up to five GREEN photos on your blog, website or Flickr page and leave a comment here. I will continue to update this post throughout the day with a link to your photos. If you do not have a blog, website or Flickr page and still wish to play along, I will be happy to post your photos. Leave a comment with your email address and I will be in touch.

The Challenge will continue until midnight, Saturday, August 18th Eastern Time USA. Drawing for the Green Challenge Fabric will be on Sunday, August 19th. Remember to be eligible to win the Challenge Fabric, you must play along.

Also be sure to visit Jennifer's blog for more GREEN.

Fiona at Paper Ponderings has a beautiful quote about patience from Rilke and photo of a Japanese garden...such lovely greens!

More greens over at  Arzigogolare. Lisa outdid herself as always with beautiful water reflections, luscious plums and a GREEN trip through Venice.

More fabulous beasty greens here at ersimarina.

Can't wait to see all those GREEN posts!

A few more GREEN additions from Joan S--thanks, Joan!:

Green from the Rainforest exhibit at the National Zoo, Washington, D. C.

Green from the Rainforest exhibit at the National Zoo, Washington, D. C.

Southwest USA green
Southwest USA green

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Spontaneous Artistic Combustion

Kai's Story Bag front

This morning, while my brother and sister-in-law were packing up for the return trip to New York City, I  pulled out the last two canvas bags and a set of fabric markers. They were the perfect distraction for my 5 1/2 year old nephew and almost 11 year old niece.

While many of us older folk may have hemmed and hawed about what to draw on these bags, my niece and nephew went right to it.

Ivy began by drawing beautiful designs and patterns, carefully (and care-freely) building up the colors.

Ivy's artistic bag

Kai began drawing a dragon and a volcano... a fiery combustible scene. I said, I really like your story bag...and of course he looked at me funny, as if to say, What are you talking about Aunt Julie!?

Kai's Story Bag back

Seeing Kai's bag makes me think of my new workshop, coming up in December A Story in the Making: Creating Story Cloth in Print and Stitch. I have yet to figure out the particulars but am really excited about the concept. I wish to play with some different formats for the story cloths and seeing Kai's bag made me think..aha! another possible format in which to tell a story.

Imagine turning the cloth into a special storytelling bag and inside the bag would be stored some very special items... a continuation of the story.

I'm excited just thinking about it!

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Sun Printing in Maine

Today, we set out an old sheet, mixed up some Pebeo Setacolor Transparent fabric paints, spread out some silk scarves and canvas bags and started sun printing!

First we gathered some wild flowers and pine needles and put out our treasures from yesterday's trip to the beach.

Then we painted our scarves and bags...

And placed our finds on the wet paint.

The sun was HOT, but we were determined.

There were successes but the prints were very subtle.

Don't forget it's just two days until the Searching for Roy G Biv Challenge...this month it's GREEN!


Monday, August 13, 2012

Two Walks

Morning walk...

Prescott Park, Portsmouth, New Hampshire.

Afternoon walk...

Sea Point Beach, Kittery Point, Maine.