It’s been hot. Very hot. I’ve been walking Finn early and late to avoid the worst of it. I’m even watering the trees at this point.
My writing workshop resumes next week and so I am collecting prompts, cleaning my work area, and thinking about the writers who will hopefully be showing up. I ordered a few books in anticipation as well.
I hope I get back in the blogging grove soon, but it doesn’t seem to be today. (I meant to say “groove,” but I like the idea of a blogging grove!)
The above collage was produced digitally, then printed out, and marked with white and regular pencils. I am excited about this. Maybe I’m excited about this all out of proportion to the technique, but it feels like a new direction, one that might yield unexpected and interesting results.
I used to work bigger more often. This smallish tower quilt was getting a rest pinned to the back of another quilt and I decided, after looking at it for a day, that I liked it with a surround of brown.
I went looking downstairs, fully expecting to have to make a substituon, but I found the very cloth!
It is going to be hot today. Dog walk was sweaty. K has his five-year colonoscopy midday and of course he needs a ride. Because of the Covid numbers, I will wait outside. Hope there’s a patch of shade.
And below find yesterday’s collage results (some of them). Feel free to skip if you’re on Instagram!
Just catching my breath between dog walk and writing workshop, so I have to be brief.
Sharing screen shots here to give you a sense of how some digital collage goes. Variation after variation. Layering one layer on top of another. A small sampling!
This week the exercise served as a way to process the news. I like the versions, like the one above, that make trump spawn and in-law look like monsters. Because they all are monsters. In fact, the hearings could be described as: Monsters on Parade. Even the so-called good guys are monsters — for having supported the Monster-in-Chief in the first place and for keeping a damaging silence in the intervening months for another.
I’ve been critical of Maureen Dowd over the years, but she wrote a good opinion piece this week using Frankenstein story as reference.
Focus and restriction can yield relief. After a few days on the BRAT diet, I am feeling better. Blood and stool lab work all came back negative. Phew. So a re-set. I can do that.
Focusing on the history of our young nation through the lens of John James Audubon also makes me feel better. I’m reading a second biography and taking notes. I’ve read two biographies about his wife, Lucy.
Okay, okay — so much for keeping secrets. But you probably would like to learn that at one point the Audubons owned close to a dozen slaves, yes? And that for some reason, historic mentions quantify nine as “a few.” Let me reality check. Would YOU refer to nine of anything as “a few”?
You cannot read about Audubon without getting fantastic descriptions of huge sycamore and chestnut trees, of paddling down the Ohio, of camping with the Osage, and of course birds. Birds, birds, and more birds.
Audubon loved them all which makes him even more appealing somehow — from the humble warblers and wrens to the spectacular eagles and rose-breasted grosbeak.*
Here’s what I’ve learned about JJA as a husband. He was hyper-focused on his drawings and investigations of nature, which meant he roamed the woods for weeks and even months at a time. He was an abject failure at business and also given to confabulation (DID he study with Jacques-Louis David, for instance?). In short, he was unreliable.
He presents the weird mix of fate and innate capacities that produces works of genius. But you also get poverty and extended periods of isolation for Lucy. For substantial stretches of their marriage, Lucy supported them by teaching.
It’s chilly this morning but supposed to reach 100 this weekend. Huh?
Had dinner with friends last night. Seven of us. We didn’t hug even though it’s been a while but if someone was sick, we’ve all been exposed, hugs or no.
K is on a conference call with China. They tend to be endless, which is part of why I’m outside. He goes into the office three days a week now, I think I’ve said. It seems a little pointless — the commute and diminished sleep the cost of collegiality?
All the annuals are in pots now.
* Under a Wild Sky, John James Audubon and the Making of The Birds of America, by William Souder, pages 90 – 93.
I’ll start the list of Covid silver linings with two.
One, The first thing I hear every morning is, “I’ll go down and start the coffee.”
Do you now how nice this is?
Husband used to leave the house at 6:15, which meant he was up and out in full dark for portions of the year. I’d be so dead to the world I wouldn’t even hear his NPR-set alarm. I never minded making coffee but it is so nice to rise and shine with it ready to pour. His company is nice too.
Two, Covid has normalized my wardrobe choices. Ha! Most of what I wear has to meet a single criteria — is this outfit as comfortable as pajamas? The rest of the world has caught up to me I guess.
This is the time of year when my holiday timing clashes with my husband’s. That’s why I will begin to sneakily remove the smaller ornaments and put them away. Hope he doesn’t notice! Actually, this year he might go for full take-down before New Year’s because we got our tree the day after Thanksgiving. It is dry.
I got a rice cooker for Christmas and we might just have rice every evening from here on out. It comes out perfect every time. I used to have one. Here’s a fun fact you probably don’t know about me: I ate nearly exclusively with chopsticks for about five years.
But what am I saying about rice? I have all the ingredients for lasagne. I really hope it’s as good as the batch I made for my brother the trip before last. They purchased some specialty ricotta which was creamier than what I usually buy, and I think that made the difference. Wish me luck! It’s a lot of work for a meh-meal.
Lastly, I get to congratulate myself (again) for sticking with the Paris Collage Collective’s challenge for the entire year, even with four trips to Los Angeles and one to Boulder. I doubt I’ll do it again in 2022. I am eager to make some collages fueled by more personal images. This week’s image was a hand holding a balloon.
If you don’t have ADD or don’t know anyone with ADD, you probably can’t quite appreciate why this is such a big deal.