Friday, January 30, 2009

Create a Thing a Day

I am saving my energy for Keri Smith's Create a Thing A Day challenge. I signed up and from 1 to 28 Feb I will be creating one thing a day! So today I am not going to post anything, oh, except these lacy pictures I took this morning ...

Have a crazy and great weekend!

Thursday, January 29, 2009

(he)Art Installation

Most of the things I make are recycled - by which I mean that I re-use stuff I already have in the house. I do not want to buy new items in order to create something.
Also, most of the things I make are prototypes - which is a clever way of saying that the execution could be better, but I was in a bit of a hurry.
I made my second love/heart project (the first one is here) using an old frame and ribbons (as in the post below), old magazine paper (I love monochrome, but I guess you could have used more colourful pages), and some red yarn that I bought ages and ages ago at a Black Sash fete.

Cut out hearts, embroider them to you heart's content ...

and pin them onto your board. And now you have a
(he)Art Installation.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Moody ...

Remember the mood boards I created last year from old frames and chickenwire? Using them has not been conducive to the calm and tranquil mood I want to cultivate. Paperclips got stuck, it was enormously difficult to add something and more times than I care to remember did I snag my fingers painfully on those sharp little wires.
So I decided to re-do them, by removing the chicken wire, painting the frames white ...

... adding some ribbon ...

... to create this ...
... and pinning up the bits and pieces with cute little bamboo clothes pegs ...
A close-up view:
The second mood board is used for one of the hearts and love projects I am working on - I will post about it tomorrow.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

An Exercise in Looking ... and Seeing ...

I love Keri Smith's 100 ideas. I downloaded the PDF file last year, cut out all the little squares (without reading them - I want each one to be a surprise!) and put them in a glass jar. Every now and then, when I feel the need for creative guidance, I pick one at random, paste it in a small journal, and execute the 'idea'. Last week it was number 1. (" Go for a walk. Draw or list things you find on the sidewalk.")

I was amazed at how this changed my regular walk to Fish Hoek - I noticed all kinds of little bits and pieces that usually get edited out by one's brain: a marrow bone, a red blob of paint, some twisty bits of white plastic, a crumpled tissue, a big shiny leaf, a rusted, flattened battery, a plank with faint green stripes, an old Marlboro packet, the torn-off side strip of a printed invoice, a Cup O' Soup box, a broken green bottle, and many, many more.
(I also loved Esti's post about teaching her little daughters to look and notice things. See here.)

Monday, January 26, 2009

The Ghosts on the Dance Floor ...

I went to tango last night - my first milonga for the year - at the wonderful Albert Hall. No, not the one in London, UK. This one is in Woodstock, Cape Town.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

The Meaning of Mount Misery ...

This is Mount Misery ...

although by now ...
it looks like this ...

About a week ago our neighbours, who live behind us, started to build another house next to ours. It means we will lose the lovely sea view we have from the kitchen and dining area. It will change into a View of a Wall. In addition we will unfortunately lose our morning sun as the new house will be built very close to ours.
Also, this week, a major project I have been relying on to provide work for the next two months was canned by the publisher.
So I have been contemplating the meaning of these annoyances and disappointments in one's life. These Blights on the Horizon of one's Happiness, so to speak. (Just to qualify - I am talking about average frustrations here, not true suffering like having a terminal illness or losing a loved one or having one's house bombed - I would not presume to have the insight or experience to philosophise about such things.)
I have come to two conclusions:
1) Everything is changing, transient, fleeting. When you lose something (like a sea view, in my case), it is a reminder of the transience of life. And that makes one's experience of it so much keener, don't you think? Now, when I wash the dishes, I lift my eyes not only to experience the joy of my Jesse Breytenbach print, but also to linger on the beautiful sea beyond. I am seeing it again, and seeing it properly, for the very reason that I now know it is not permanent, not 'mine', and indeed never was.

2) When something falls through, it is disappointing, true, but it means that one is now free to experience or do something else. A simple mind shift. There is no point nor benefit to focus on the could-haves and the if-onlys.
Dear friends, I hope you are having a great weekend - the weather here is glorious. Glorious! I might go for a swim later ...

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Love is in the Air ... and on the Fridge

I was so inspired by My Castle in Spain's beautiful Valentine's cards that I have decided to create only love-inspired objects between now and Valentine's Day, and just fill the house with love and hearts!

Fridge magnets I made from glass pebbles. Super simple. These are just prototypes, I'll make some more & finish them off a bit more carefully.

A new (and unfinished) journal page called Love Birds. Or to be more exact: LOVE BIRDS. (I am recycling some of my Xmas tree ornaments.)

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Unfinished Art Journal pages

Here are two pages that I've started on. They might change.

Created late last night. We can see the lights of Simonstown in the distance from our living room windows. Simonstown is hardly a city, but it still looks magical ...

LIFE - Admit One.
It is not finished yet. I want to add arrows and an Exit sign.
(Also created late last night and inspired by Linda Sue's gift - here.)

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

A new era

I have just finished watching this:

Great man. Great speech.

Monday, January 19, 2009


Felice Varini does these amazing paintings in architectural spaces:

Viewed from most angles, they seem like arbitrary fragments.

But from exactly the right angle, you see a a perfect geometric shape.
These blue patches become ...


And a few red stripes in an office building become a

perfect ellipse.
It is all a matter of perspective ...
(found via yatzer)

Friday, January 16, 2009


Today is the end of the colour week project - the final topic is stripes. Unfortunately I had quite a lot of work so had to find all my photographic inspiration inside the house:

My stripey socks ...

Tango stripes!
Three of my stripey T-shirts. I have a few more ...
Some Paul Smith inspiration ...

The outside of my Couch Potato bag - velvet ribbon stripes on denim.

And finally, a potholder in my kitchen. (The Afrikaans word is 'vatlappie' - I love that word! Translated literally it means "a little cloth that you use to touch/take".)
Have a great stripey weekend, my dears!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Pink is Pretty

I had fun looking for pink things to photograph today. As usual, I have way too many. I must learn to edit.

Pink geranium in my garden.

Section of a Marlene Dumas painting. I love her work.

Handle of African sweep/brush thingie. I got it here.

The inside lining of my Couch Potato bag. Handmade. In South Africa.

My pink highlighter. I use it to "tick off" things in my moleskine diary. Oh, what a feeling of accomplishment - viewing all those pink stripes at the end of the day ...

The front cover of my online craft course journal. Observations on my daily life.

A pink scarf I own but have stopped wearing. The flowery bits fall off and I trail little fabric roses wherever I go ...

A pink net for fishing things out of rock pools. In shop window in Simons Town.

Wrapped pillar in Simons Town main street. This is where I had a cappuccino this morning. It was good.
Fake flower in front of The Meeting Place in Simons Town. Where I had the cappuccino. The leaves are real though ... The coffee too.

Fabric of cushion inside The Meeting Place.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Today is a Yellow Day

Linda Sue of All I Ever Wanted is doing a week-long colour photo project (via Lisa of CuriousGirl). I thought I would join them for Yellow Day. (See here if you want to play too.) I took all of these at home and on my trip to Simons Town today.
My new packet of sewing needles for all those outstanding fabric projects ...

Shop sign. Can you guess what it says?

Road markings on Simons Town main street.
Small flower in front of Dido Valley cemetery.

Book bag from a well-known SA bookshop. Do you know who is depicted?

Small yellow sponge for doing the dishes.

Ripe bananas in basket in my kitchen.
Log for proofreading project - on yellow post-its and yellow scrap paper.

Wind-blown flowers at base of lamp post on the way back from Simons Town.

My trusty yellow stapler.