Wednesday, May 29, 2013

A Surprising Find



Up Close!

Cyclops sculptures by Jules Olitski outside the Katzen Arts Center at American University in Washington, D.C.

Found on my walk while waiting for my son.

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Savannah Walk #3

Having a sense of perspective.

Looking at the big and small picture.

Looking at things from many different angles.

Walking in another's shoes.

These are all things I've been thinking about this week.

Tomorrow I head back to Virginia. Some things have been accomplished. The big, difficult things are yet to come.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Savannah Walk #2


This can be difficult to find during stressful times.

A nature walk or any walk at all with eyes and heart open can be calming.

A walk with moments to stop and take in what is present is truly a gift.

Yesterday, I was also reminded of the importance of being flexible.

Plans can change in a moment. A parent feels ill. A person doesn't show up to provide help.
Yesterday, was spent at my parents' home. It was relatively quiet.

My mini laptop also decided to fall ill yesterday. This provided another test for remaining flexible. I am typing this on my Mom's Mac (I'm a PC lady). Learning a few new tricks for a relatively old dog. I've also had to postpone the Newsletter. I've prided myself in getting it out on schedule each month, but have to give myself a bit of a break this month. It should be out on Monday. Thanks for your patience and good will.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Savannah Walk #1

Just so you know, I'm not in Savannah proper (aka the city). I'm here on Skidaway Island in a place called The Landings. My parents have been living here for the past 17 years or so.

I've decided to try to post each day. Photos from my morning walks. These walks are a chance to get my thoughts in order and prepare for whatever the day may hold.

I'm also hoping that as I think about my parents' situation on these walks, I might learn a little something.

Today I thought about curiosity and wonder.

It's important to stay curious throughout your life. Don't stop being curious.

Today, I found these markings on the walk. They looked liked spray paintings of Saturn to me. And although I know that they are markings for gas or cable lines, I had great fun following where they led me.

These curious marks seemed to be a secret language.

It's also important to still find wonder. I notice that sometimes nature gives us a kick in the pants to remind us about that!

This morning, I walked out the front door and there perched on the railing was a crow. It stood there looking at me.

I started off to walk and suddenly said, Hey, this is not something you see everyday! So I went back and took a couple of photos. The crow seemed perfectly content to hang out for a while.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Roy Winner Chosen and Reminder About Another Drawing for Free Fabric

Carving a block for my next Newsletter.

First...congratulations go to ....Fiona! Believe it or not, Fiona has been playing along with Jennifer and me from the start and has NEVER won. Fiona, I was very happy to see my husband unfold the piece of paper with your name on it. Please send me an email ( with your mailing address and I will get the fabric off to you soon.

Detail of the Green Challenge fabric.

Thank you to all who played along this month. I always find it so inspirational to see where the search for each month's color leads you. Such an amazing variety speaks to each of our unique viewpoints.

The next installation of the Search is Thursday, June 20th and the color, of course, is BLUE.

And now for a  reminder about another fabric drawing coming up on May 22nd. I am offering a packet of four fat quarters of coffee dyed fabric with black block printing.

Fabrics for the May 22nd drawing. You have to be a subscriber and send me an email to be eligible.

To find out more about this drawing see the last issue of Julie B Booth Surface Design News.

I'm back in the studio again today finishing up some carved blocks and printing fabric for the next issue (Issue#13) of the Newsletter which comes out next weekend.

Off to Savannah tomorrow to visit with my parents. I'll be bringing along some painted and printed fabrics. Lots of squares need to be cut for a new art piece.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Searching for Roy G Biv II: Green Update #3

Love this little green bird on her green perch.
Green fence and shadows.
Soft greens from a neighborhood walk.
Luminous green.
Luscious green grapes from the Farmer's Market at the Ferry Building, San Francisco.
Green tomatoes also from the Farmer's Market at the Ferry Building, San Francisco.

It's that time of the month again! Time to post your photos for this month's Search for Roy G Biv (the colors of the rainbow). As you can see this month's color is GREEN.

To play along just post some GREEN photos by midnight, Saturday, May 18th (Eastern USA time) and make a comment here. I will link back to your blog or  website or Flickr. If you have none of those, feel free to email me (threadborn@gmail) with your photos and I will post them here.

Looking forward to seeing all the variety (remember, tints and shades encouraged!) of GREENS today.

Here again is this month's Challenge fabric. The drawing will be on Sunday, May 19th. In order for your name to go into the hat, you must play along.

Be sure to take a look at my Roy co-host (or is it cohort?!) Jennifer's blog for D.C. GREENS.

Kim at Letting in the Light has created a lovely bit of GREEN.

Fiona at Paper Ponderings is pondering a great Picasso quote and abstract GREEN this month.

Some lovely organic GREENS from Margaret over at Charlton Stitcher. 

Maya at Million Little Stitches has a selection of hot summer GREENS. 

Lisa at arzigogolare has some edible psychedelic fractal GREENS (perfectly legal!). GREEN Part 2 features getting up close and personal with olive trees...with a Part 3 yet to come!

Deb at saltbushstitch has some gorgeous sea glass GREENS.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Searching for Roy G Biv Reminder

Detail of green Challenge fabric.
Yes, believe it or not this Thursday is the next installment of the Searching for Roy G Biv (the colors of the rainbow) Challenge! Green is the color this month. For those of you who haven't played along before, click here for more information.

As usual, I will be offering a chance to win a Challenge fabric. This month's fabric is made with a Confectioner's sugar resist followed by a layer of printing.

Green Challenge fabric.
 Looking forward to seeing lots of green on Thursday!

Friday, May 10, 2013


Detail from Red Chair

Now that I've given myself permission to take a different direction for the F.I.N.E. mapping show, I'm finding myself looking back at some techniques that I enjoyed and want to explore further.

I've decided to focus on two ideas.

One is the concept of Crossroads.This is hitting home particularly as I try to find my way to the next stage in my artwork. At the moment, I'm conceiving (great word!) of this as a series of square shapes with strips of fabric hand stitched to form cross shapes. The overall design will be made up of nine patches using these squares and there will be a large cross shape formed in the center.

I'm debating about make the squares or rows of squares into stuffed pockets that I can quilt as I go. This is similar in concept to how I worked on my small primitive dolls.

Small Primitive

I like the effect as it creates a sturdy piece, that's feels good in the hand.

The other idea is X Marks the Spot. This piece will be made from small folded squares sewn together to form units that have an X in the center. These will then be sewn together so that a larger X is formed.

I used this technique for a piece called Red Chair that I made ages ago. I've always wanted to come back to this technique. Now seems like a good time.

Both of these ideas are larger pieces generated from small parts.  Right now, I'm dyeing, painting and printing  lots of fabrics that can be cut into small units. These will be portable (until they are sewn into the larger pieces). I know that I'll be making some trips to Savannah to see my folks so having small portable units to work on will keep the ball rolling with these pieces.

Two artists got me thinking about working in small units that I could carry with me and work on anywhere. My friend, and fellow fiber artist Pam Sullivan suggested that working larger didn't have to mean a single large piece but perhaps instead many small units that become the larger piece. Maya Matthew recently had a post about a textile piece she carried around with her and worked on over a period of time. Click here to see the post.

So...I am beginning work on these two ideas and will see where they lead...

Tuesday, May 7, 2013


Permission Slip
 It's a silly thing, really.

Giving yourself permission.

Today, during a meeting of my group, F.I.N.E., we had a serious discussion about where the group was going. We've been having some growing pains as a number of us are working through transitions in our artwork.

We have a show scheduled for the end of the year with a theme that we've been trying to work with for the past two years.

It seemed like an exciting theme back then, and still an interesting one. But, I've been feeling locked into what I started two years ago.

Today, one of the artists in the group said...Do what is calling to you. We can make it work in the show.

She gave me permission. And then I realized, I had to give myself permission too.

Why is it so hard to do that sometimes?

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Harrisonburg Bricks

I'm just back from my son's graduation. We are so proud of him and surprised to find out that he graduated Magna Cum Laude!

It's been a whirlwind of a weekend...celebrating and then packing up our Hundai with college stuff along with three adults.

Last night, we ate at a Harrisonburg burger joint. Burgers are high on my son's and husband's list of favorite foods (maybe at the top). We'd heard that Jack Brown's had good burgers. Well, husband and son have become burger connoisseurs over the years. These were not burgers to write home about.

However, being seated outside, I gazed across the parking lot and couldn't help but notice a wall of amazing brick. Right after dinner, I headed over to take a few photos.

I admit to playing around with the contrast and cropping...just for fun!