January 2007 Archives

Interesting articles

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Quickly, since I am doing reading for class:

  • NY Times piece on doubtful Pollocks
  • Also a controversial essay on liberal Jews, linking them to anti-Semitism - you can download the essay here
  • from CNN - didn't we already know about Stonehenge? (Since my TA experience, I'm thoroughly amused by anything to do with Stonehenge - according to one of my students, Stonehenge is located in Egypt and dates to 500,000 BCE. Heh.)
  • Does anyone else like House as much as I do?

That'll do. Back to my ridiculous pile (photo to come)


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I may or may not be intoxicated, which may or may not have rendered me incapable of a progressive train of thought.

Lucky you, we'll do this in list form! With pictures!

- Last Friday I swung down to New Jersey to celebrate my mother passing a licensing exam with flying colors - it was a real treat to have all 4 members of my nuclear family in one place enjoying each others' company. We went to a Mexican place in the Highlands, and on the specials menu they featured Pork Wings. Just think about that for a while.

- Last night after working all afternoon, I took a break from painting. Eric picked me up from my studio to go out to the Life Cafe with our friends Seth and Brendan. It was all kinds of fun driving around as the snow fell, and I really enjoyed seeing them. It's good to laugh until you can't breathe, and I think this should be pursued as much as possible.

- Our sweet and talented friend Danika sent a link to a song of hers by email to the Cleo listserve (go ahead and check it out, give her a good rating). I sent the link to Eric and when he opened his browser, we heard her singing over herself in rounds, which would ordinarily be disorienting but in this case formed a strange and lovely harmony. I got chills.

- I just got tickets to La Traviata, an opera featuring one of my all-time favorite arias, which I've never seen performed live (synopsis here). I'm ridiculously excited. Seeing as Eric's response to Chinese opera was "Oh, that's how I learned to blow spit bubbles," he was a little less so. You can download a creative commons mp3 soundtrack of it here.

I brought my ice skates back from New Jersey recently and am now itching to go to nearby Prospect Park to skate. My parents got me super awesome deluxe ultra comfortable skates which are rather more like reinforced, insulated boots than what one may conceive of as ice skates (oddly, the site no longer has the women's version, but here are the men's). It should be lots of fun.

- Oh Disney. Why do they torture me so? I've never been to Disney World, but man do I want to stay in Cinderella's castle. Speaking of, Cinderella III??! Oh hell yes, Happy Valentine's Day to Vicki. Also, perhaps my favorite Cinderella ever (I'm going through this whole "Scarlett Johansson is the most beautiful woman in the world" thing*).

* in part because of this, I recently Netflix'ed Scoop, which I did not really like at all. I won't hold it against her.

- tomorrow I'm going to a film screening of Absolute Wilsonfollowed by a lecture by Robert Wilson and Katharina Otto-Bernstein at school. At first I was grumbling that I was required to attend, but now that I've been looking into it, I think it should be really excellent. Also, doesn't he look more than a little bit like Michael Kors?

- In addition to the assigned readings for my contemporary literature class, I've picked up a few collections of short stories. Any additional recommendations you may have for good books or stories you've read lately would be sincerely appreciated. I'll talk about the other stuff I'm reading soon, as it levels on absurdity.

On the home front

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The other day, Eric had awesome morning hair.

It is seriously an incomparable joy to be with him every day.

(I got him that t-shirt at Christmas - on the back is says "Somebody set up us the bomb" and has a little bomb graphic. Hehehe.)

Also for some reason when I make lasagna, I consider it a noteworthy event in my life, one which should be documented and published.

This was actually a low-fat version with sausage, green peppers, and mushrooms. Unfortunately, the ricotta was sort of runny (I guess creaminess comes with sweet tasty fat), though on the whole, it lost nothing.

Eric's special amazing homemade garlic bread was not low-fat by any stretch of the imagination, but it was totally worth it.

For those of you who have been looking, I've finally updated the Serial Art blog with a handful of back-posted entries and will make a sincere effort to be more timely now that I've got Picasa running on my computer again.

A little note

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(See image below - if you're having trouble reading it, you can click to enlarge it to 1556×2892, which I suppose is also good if you'd like to print a messy poster.)

Link about Pod Post

- Also, today was National Pie Day. Be still my heart.

The bicycle incident

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This morning when I was moving my car, I was about to open my door, then caught a glimpse of movement in my mirror. A biker whizzed by in the narrow space between my door and rushing traffic, and I thought how awful it would have been to have opened the door and knocked him over.

I was reminded of one of my more graceful moments, the day before I was to enter high school. A group of my friends all got together to go to the beach, thinking we'd have a nice relaxing day and freshen our tans to make a big splash on the upperclassmen.

Going to the beach was a very simple matter, as it was right over a bridge from my parents' house, so we all met up there, overloaded ourselves with bags, radios, towels, magazines, and whatever else a collection of teenagers could conceive of needing, then headed out on our bicycles.

The bridge is of course very steep, and the traffic which goes around it is intense, so we tended to ride on the elevated sidewalk, watching out for pedestrians but mostly trying to build speed so we could take a dramatic jump over the end of the sidewalk when it turned a corner into a crosswalk.

I was in the lead, taunting a friend of mine who kept screeching his brakes the whole way because he was afraid he wouldn't be able to stop at the end. He got annoyed and picked up his speed at the end, but chickened out just before the jump, slammed on his brakes, and of course also smashed his butt from the impact off the curb.

I had been turned around watching and was laughing hysterically, so amused that I didn't notice the blue Volvo parked right in front of me, in the middle of the crosswalk. When I turned around, it was too late to do anything, and my bike collided with its rear bumper, I was thrown ass over elbows up onto the trunk, and all my belongings scattered around me and into the road.

Apart from some cuts and scrapes and a rather epic bruise where my thigh hit the handle bar, I was fine. I didn't notice any damage to the Volvo, and to be honest, my self-righteous teenage indignation seriously overtook any common sense. As I quickly gathered up my parcels, I kept saying loudly "Well who the hell parks in the middle of a crosswalk anyway?!" Inside, I was hoping and praying that its owner wouldn't come out screaming at me.

I had a vague suspicion that every high schooler in the town was at the beach that day and had seen all this, and they would recognize me immediately the next day as the girl who rode her bike into a Volvo.

When we got to the beach, the friend who'd taken the ass-plant pointed out that my leg was bleeding, and various parts of me were scraped raw. Once away from the scene and among the relative anonymity of a packed Jersey shore beach, I was able to get upset for the right reasons: that was scary and I could have gotten seriously hurt. I could have done major damage to the car, or one of my friends could have maneuvered their bikes out into traffic trying to avoid hitting me, etc. This wasn't just a "ha ha, I'm an idiot" laugh-off, but a serious realization that I should have been paying more attention, I should have been wearing a helmet, I shouldn't have been riding at such a high speed, and all the other things I knew my mother would tell me if I repeated the story at home.

Instead, I grumbled about how I'd wanted to wear a mini-skirt the first day of high school and now wouldn't that look foolish with scraped up legs and road rash.

At some point in the last few years, I've become incredibly cautious. I worry so much about what mighthappen down the road. I over-plan, I fret, I make everyone around me anxious and miserable, and ultimately, it's for naught. Sure, there might be a Volvo in the middle of my path some day, but there really isn't anything I can do about it except resolve to bounce back with the same resiliency (and maybe arrogance) I had when I was thirteen.

Machine life

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I am still dealing with my computer. Last night I had finally finished copying all of my documents and as many program specifics as I could export onto our networked external hard drive.

Bravely, and with more than a little consolation from Eric, we wiped the drive clean and installed a fresh copy of Vista, which seems more or less marvelous. Eric also set up partitions on my drive so that the next time I should wish to reformat, I can simply delete and reinstall Windows within its own partition and leave all my documents alone.

(Why is all this such a big deal for me?)

Unfortunately, I am now unable to reconnect to said networked drive to restore my data and settings. Also on this drive are files with all of my passwords to pretty much everything I do... so I'm a little cranky about it all.

Performance is markedly improved, and I'm not at all bothered by the look/feel of Vista, apart from a mild resemblance to Macs and the loss of the very tasteful silvery olive and orange color scheme I'd set up on XP. I'm sure once I brave some exploration, I'll find all kinds of great advantages to a new OS, but to be honest, I really won't be happy until I have all of my stuff back, the way I want it.

Yes, computers. One of life's great modern conveniences...

(The title of course refers to this old classic).

So I was having a really good morning. Went out in the fluffy and beautiful (and non-accumulating) snow, moved my car to a spot right outside the apartment, did a bunch of dishes, cleaned the kitchen...

Then I turned on my computer to check my email and such. Hmm, that's funny... this doesn't seem like all of my email. Actually, my Inbox is completely empty, and I don't have any of the folders created after 2005.


I spent a very tedious and remarkably long time trying to recover my email myself, as I was able to locate .bak files and convert them to .dbx... but yeah, I couldn't get them to transform into readable emails, nor figure out what in heck I did to have caused Outlook Express to have spontaneously deleted them all in the first place.

I concluded that most likely, there was some massive data-hemorrhage type problem when it tried to compact my messages. Unfortunately this isn't surprising, as despite the new RAM Eric gave me for Christmas, my computer is still having all kinds of borky issues, such as not being able to properly shut down all the time.

Once I'd exhausted the patience and knowledge of both myself (that didn't take long) and Eric, I decided to sack up, pay $30 for a Repair Tool and recover what I think is all of it. Or at least 1500+ messages, so yeah, that's plenty, right?

Boy, it was lots of fun to sort through them all and put them back into folders, all the while wondering what may be missing.

Because I am obsessive compulsive and more than a little superstitious, I plan to spend the rest of the day backing up every single piece of data I could ever conceive of wanting in the future, then wiping my hard drive clean and reinstalling Windows. At least I'll be installing Vista, so while part of me thinks sarcastically "Oh won't that be fun," the other part agrees that actually, it kind of will.

Stupid computers.

I am way cuter as a cartoon character

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All I'm saying is that as an M&M, I'm freaking adorable.


And yeah, if I were going out taking photographs, I probably wouldn't wear my glasses... or my red heels... but I think accuracy can be sacrificed on this one.

Eric's not half bad himself... with his turtle and his... robots.

(In his defense, I made this one as a recreation of his because he lost patience with it and lost his character.)

Everything is better, by far

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I'm not sure how, but my entire world rotated 180 degrees to Awesome.

Yesterday morning Eric and I went to the Kellogg's diner for a very early breakfast, then he dropped me off at my studio, where I finished reorganizing it (now it's SO much more functional!) and got some painting in.

On my way to my morning painting class, I stopped to buy a Diet Coke, and the machine also dispensed a bottled water with it - bonus! I also ran into my photo professor from last spring, with whom I've been wanting to talk.

Painting class was awesome - I already absolutely adore my professor, who just returned from an artist's residency in India and describes herself as a "pure painter." She began by talking at length about nature, which obviously piqued my interest immediately. Everyone in that class seems really friendly and nice, and one of my classmates actually went to the same undergrad college as me! Last semester I had been in the group studio area for a critique, and I'd walked by his cubicle thinking the work looked remarkably familiar, but I was like "Nah, it can't be the same guy." Lo and behold, it is.

When I went to the fine arts office to ask some questions, I learned my afternoon thesis class would unfortunately be canceled, but that actually gave me the opportunity to sit down with my adviser and ask all kinds of questions about thesis and the whole process.

See, he had letters he was about to mail out describing preview, which included the following passage:

"At the Preview, the Faculty decides if and when your Thesis exhibition will be held. Therefore you must display essentially those works which will appear in the exhibition; later changes may be made only with the permission of your major professor."

After reading that over, I concluded that my thesis professor was right; there was no way in hell I was ready for that. I went back to talk to him again and he said no, it's not really as rigorous as it sounds. I said I think I would like to have my thesis exhibit in the fall, and he said all I would have to do is talk to my professor, explain that I don't want to pass preview, then once I've failed, be allowed to schedule a later preview either in May or August, during which I would be approved to schedule a fall exhibit, say in like early September. Credit and time-wise, I would not have to register any additional classes, and actually I have seven years to pass preview and have my show as long as I continue as a student.

So suddenly this sounds like an incredibly relaxing and exciting plan, so long as my thesis professor goes along with it... and since she basically suggested it in the fall, I can't imagine her objecting. I can actually take my time this semester and throw myself into my work without fretting so much over having finished objects. Marvelous.

I talked to my mom for a while this afternoon and spent what would have been my class time painting in my studio. For once, I was relaxed and really felt at home there - finally. I'm very excited with the direction my work has started going in lately, and I think that I can come up with stuff I truly like now that I'm focusing on it and calming down about it all.

Because he is wonderful, Eric made delicious cheese steak sandwiches (with peppers and mushrooms and Cheddar cheese!) and he baked chocolate chip cookies. Seeing my man holding a tray of cookies in one hand and a spatula in another, asking "Do these look golden brown enough?" is just inexpressibly, fantastically wonderful.

Smokey also made an effort at a Wii Kitty shot too, snuggling up with a nun chuck and Wii-mote:

He's such a nice little pumpkin, but his ass is going on a diet this week.

Today I have my Materials, Techniques & Conservation class, for which I am ridiculously excited. The session this afternoon is a double meeting, running for six hours (yikes), during which we'll get to tour the conservation labs and meet the conservators and staff. We'll also have our first lecture, which focuses on artist's materials, particularly pigments and paint, which, swoon. I love this stuff!

The dangerous side effect of reading so much about paint is the desperate itchy hole it burns in my threadbare pocket, as I discover amazing sites like Natural Pigments, which sells a delicious array of pigments, mediums, and all kinds of supplies... including my much-coveted Malachite, in dry and paintforms. Be still my heart - I can very easily see myself going bankrupt with enthusiasm.

All Systems No

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People deal with stress in a lot of ways. The ones I most envy get exhilarated by a challenge, find themselves all amped up with an adrenaline rush, and crash through their commitments, doing great work in the process.

I am decidedly not one of those people.

I've found that when I'm faced with a seemingly insurmountable or upsetting situation, I just plain shut down. It's as if I've gone into hibernation.

Today I slept twelve hours straight, and I'm still exhausted. My body is aching from moving furniture and stuff yesterday, I'm constantly light-headed, and intellectually I feel like I'm in a coma, glimpsing at myself from overhead and watching life move by without me.

It's quite literally like my body is saying "No. Just NO."

My classes start at 9:30 tomorrow, and I need to go to my studio as soon as it's early/late enough to walk to campus by myself to finish reorganizing. I'm also going to try to squeeze some more work in, though I think this would definitely qualify as "too little, too late."



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So I've mentioned that I'm stressed about this upcoming semester, which is really quite a bit of an understatement. Because outlining things makes me feel more in control, allow me to elaborate.

The issue at hand is whether or not I will be allowed to complete my painting thesis this spring, which is dependent upon passing survey "sometime in January." In survey, a faculty committee goes from studio to studio while students are not present, looks at the work, and decides if they pass or fail. Students who do not pass survey are not allowed to hold a thesis exhibition, and therefore cannot complete their theses. I don't know precisely when survey may be, but I would wager it will be after the deadline to reorganize my schedule for the semester.

At present, the bulk of my classes are centered around doing my thesis this spring: I'm taking a painting course (3 credits), my thesis course (5 credits), and a thesis statement course (1 credit). The only other courses I'm taking are a literature course (to complete the liberal arts requirement) and a course in materials, techniques & conservation at the Brooklyn Museum.

Were I to fail survey, it wouldn't be the end of the world, since I'm already planning to be at school for another year to complete my second degree. However, if I spend this semester's time and oh-so-pricey credits but don't come out with my thesis completed, I won't have any further resources to basically do it all over again without seriously jeopardizing my art history thesis. That's not a situation I'd really like to have to face, since most likely I would choose to drop my MFA, for reasons outlined below.

Ideally - and this is how I've scheduled the coming year - I would pass survey, work my ass off, and complete my MFA thesis this spring. Trot off to Venice for the summer, excel in the courses I take there to bolster my GPA, and head into the fall enthused for my art history degree. Spend the fall finishing my distribution requirements and beginning my research, then the spring writing that thesis and possibly working an internship which can pave the way for either working full-time or conservation school (or both) upon graduation.

My five-year plan includes specializing in conservation and doing museum work with a salary and health benefits, while also actually learning to paint. Also, I want to get married and have kids and own a home and be proud of myself at some point before I'm middle aged.

Why all of this is in jeopardy is based on my final painting critique this fall, wherein my professor admonished me for being so unfocused and indecisive and, as she sees it, having no idea what's good or bad in art. She criticized my work for being under-developed and bluntly said "You might as well take a semester off because you shouldn't expect to pass survey by any means." She further said I shouldn't rely on her to defend me in front of the faculty panel because she feels I don't deserve to go forward.

Short of absolutely awing her with the scant work I've done over break on Tuesday and winning her over in some swelling scripted moment pulled from a cheesy televised movie, I can't imagine a scenario in which the rest of the faculty overrides my professor and passes me through, especially since this committee will include professors who in the past have used me as an example for a lengthy conversation about how too many students are admitted to grad school and so few of them genuinely belong there. There are two professors who thought I had any talent at all, one of whom took a position at another school last spring, and the second currently enjoying a year-long sabbatical.

So all I can do is clean the hell out of my studio, hide everything bad, and hang only good, new work for Tuesday, then beg a critique out of my professor, however much she may still wish to slap me from the fall.

Strangely, one of the things that bothers me the most about this process (apart from being left in the dark and feeling completely unguided through it all) is the issue of convenience. It's as if the department has no concept of time, money, or how important both of them are to a student already immersed in crippling debt. If I knew outright that I wouldn't be doing my thesis this spring, I could register for a required French class at the CUNY graduate center, which conflicts with my thesis statement class (registration ends January 18th, but the class doesn't begin until February). If I don't pass survey, there is very little point in continuing with my thesis seminar and statement course this semester (I don't even know if I'll be allowed to), but it will be too late to take art history classes instead. It will even be too late at that point to apply for an internship.

Ugh. I thought it would feel better if I got all this out, but it's still just as stressful.

I guess really the only thing to do is paint, right? And think cohesive thoughts...


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Lately I've been feeling rather overwhelmed, out of control, and also insecure about starting next semester. It occurred to me that most likely my sensation of having "piles of things to do" is directly related to literally having piles of little projects and clutter surrounding me on a daily basis.

When I was young, my mother used to drive me crazy by organizing large masses of clutter into smaller, presumably more manageable, related piles of clutter. I did not realize until, oh age 24, that the reasoning behind this is that it's a lot easier to put away a whole pile of things which go in the same place than to take each thing and put it away one at a time. Really, I thought she just liked making piles.

Following her strategy, I approached the mass of ridiculous which we call our coffee table:

This thing had multiple strata and I discovered surprising things as I went. Being mildly obsessive-compulsive (but not enough to like, clean regularly), I made piles and examined what was so critical that it needed to be within arm's reach for the past few months.

Call it urban socio-archeology. You can click to enlarge pictures and play along!

(And yes, this is my way of procrastinating cleaning the rest of the apartment, which is in a similar state of organization.)

1.) Knitting

(We'll discuss this in more depth below)

2) Bookmaking supplies

Some are left from my bookmaking course, others are out from a note card set I made my mother for Christmas.

Includes: Kodak premium picture paper (semi-gloss), photo ink cartridge, card stock, scrap paper, reference envelope, envelope template, practice envelope attempts, a case-bound journal I made (then did not weigh properly and let fall in front of the litter box for several weeks), bone folder, eraser, muslin, tape, cork-backed metal ruler, glue, plastic T-square, book linen, beeswax (for binding thread), toothpick... not pictured but later located: cutting mat, binding needle, jar of PVA glue, X-Acto knife (cap in a separate location from blade), and mat knife.

3) Paper clutter

Several issues of New York (including a torn-out Year End Approval Matrix... like I was saving it for something?) and Art in America, a drawing of a costume Eric designed for my mother's dog Otto, magnetic notepad meant to stick on fridge, take-out menus, excellent recipe for turkey meatloaf, instructions and manuals from various Christmas gifts, junk mail and bills, the invitation to and thank-you card from a friend's wedding, Christmas cards, receipts.

4) Mini Art Studio

I keep an assortment of water media around for when I want to work at home instead of with the solvent-based stuff in my studio. Sheer laziness really.

Includes: 4 separate tablets of drawing paper and Bristol, canvas board painted yellow, stack of small art pieces from Serial Art project, metal case holding detail brushes (I have been looking for this for months!), paper plate I was using as a palette, actual rosewood palette (which I've had since I was in 3rd grade), glass mason jar full of peach-colored water, tube acrylics of varying quality and age, 2 photo grease pencils, mechanical pencils, small brushes, metallic acrylics.

This is just what was out on the table - our office is sort of overflowing with other art supplies.

5) Miscellaneous, and Mostly Inexplicable

I think this is stuff that at some point was in my hands and I didn't know what to do with it, but thought it should be kept.

Jar of mineral spirits (I know you're thinking this should go with studio supplies, but I never use solvents in the apartment - this little jar is actually from the last apartment, and I moved it here, two years ago - it's been sitting on a bookcase until recently, when Eric handed it to me and demanded I do something with it), salt shaker, one dirty white sock (which Eric pulled off my foot to make me insane), scrap paper where I was evidently doing math (ha!), spoon, fork, headphones, small dust broom, the case to a memory card which I've been looking for since umm, Octoberish, unworn hospital-issue slipper socks which Eric insisted I take home in my pocketbook, $10.13 (booyah!), One-a-Day vitamins (have not taken since they made their way to the table), 2 packets of Tylenol Cold, album of gorgeous black and white cathedral photographs taken by a now-deceased professor at my undergrad college, sunglasses (yesss!), two headbands, ribbons and ties from gifts, scissors, old-fashioned metal Slinky, plastic tag saying 100% pure merino (from what, neither of us can possibly say), my super-awesome birthday present from Eric: a Lyra audio/video jukebox iPod type thingie with video and photo storage (I can't find its charger and have not adequately played with it), burned Wolfmother CD, Art History Interactive (from when I was preparing amidterm review), CD someone was giving out at a party we went to, small pot holder (the oven kind), empty tub from chocolate sprinkles (I used them when I baked cookies for my students and we've been trying to put them on whatever we could think of since then).

6) Lest you think it's all me, Eric's crap:

Bootlegged movies and games from Hong Kong (I think?), book he received for Christmas, Windows boot CD, TDK hi-8 tape, back and neck massager, plugs to things and power adapter, batteries, piece of unidentifiable (but very important) metal, 3 Wii-motes (Iggy has the fourth one on the couch still), box from lens purchased in November, Wii games, Thing in a Bag vibrating cat toy (my man's got a thing for vibrators I see), book on the Manhattan Project, old issues of Scientific American and Time, pages from a book about tanks (that one's my favorite).

7) The things which may actually belong on the table:

Too many remotes (heretofore kept in a shower caddy), one pen, silver coaster set in bad need of cleaning (polishing?).

Voilà. I am a slob.

And while I realize nothing could possibly be as interesting as other people's clutter, let's also talk about knitting.

Over Christmas (actually when I was in the hospital), I decided the most important thing in the world was to knit a pair of socks which would become the first in a wardrobe of hand-knit socks for myself and everyone I love, suspected wool allergy notwithstanding.

Behold my Jaywalker, my first sock. You may remember back when I started it, but since then I ripped the whole thing back, started over (in a larger size too), and knit all the way down to the toes. Now I have a few inches of yarn left, nowhere near enough to do the rest of the toe decreases and finish, so I will have to substitute another yarn. Which I did, once, then ripped out.

In the knitting clutter picture above, you may have noticed a green skein being wound on a cardboard tube (going for a center-pull ball) - these efforts were thwarted by half of the skein existing in an enormous knot in the center, which I worked at detangling for hours before getting mad, ripping out the green I'd knit into the sock toe (why, I can't say), and resolving to "deal with that thing" later.

In the meantime, I had also purchased a 100 gram skein of self-striping yarn: Lion Brand Magic Stripes inDenim Stripe (phew). Because I'd memorized the pattern, I cast on another pair of Jaywalkers, which are coming along nicely. I plan to make these shorter, so as to avoid not-enough-yarn toe issues in this pair.

I can't explain why I like this color combination so much, yet there it is.

I've made significant progress on my Ballet Camisole, and I am within an inch or two of dividing for the armholes. I know that at the moment it looks like a tubular pile of knitting, but oh, it's such a lovely pile.

My love for the silky, delicious Knit Picks Shine cotton yarn defies description. It feels so nice to my skin, and I think this will become something I genuinely love wearing once it's finished.

My other Ballet sweater, the wrap cardigan, is completely knit, but I shamefully have been avoiding finishing it. Actually, I've sewn all the body pieces together and set in one sleeve. All that remains is setting in the other and sewing the shoulders. Oh, and I have to find some ribbon for the tie.

The thing is, I think this sweater will look awful on me. Something about two layers of bulky yarn crossing right at my creamy middle (that's what we call our midsections round here) seems like it will be desperately unflattering (why I didn't think of this prior to knitting the whole thing, I cannot say). I will have to try it on to see, but I am letting it languish until I can motivate the courage. Meantime, it's another pile of lovely green yarn (made much softer by blocking).

I started the Ivy wrap sweater, but I think I bunged up the cables somehow, so I ripped back the first six rows I'd knit and will start again soon, maybe when I can locate my size 4 circular needle (because that many stitches on my short little straights? Ugh.).

Also unseen, I had nearly completed the back panel of the March Basic cardigan, but now find my stitch count is way off, which means I did something really wrong, somewhere. My hatred of counting and correcting mistakes is so severe that I'd rather rip it all back and reknit the whole thing from the beginning than have to figure out where I messed up... but I've decided to hold off doing that for a while.

I haven't made much progress on my Bristow cardigan apart from the first few inches after the ribbing. I'm in love with the fabric my yarn creates at that gauge, so I'd like to get moving on this one - I think it will be special.

Lastly, I started a Pasadena fitted raglan jacket, in black. Right now it's just six inches of ribbing (seriously?), but it's moving quickly and should be a fun knit.

When I ordered this yarn, I also ordered some Susan Bates size 9 straights, which apparently come in random colors. You can imagine how thrilled I was to have bright pink show up! And of course, I love watching the black stitches move over the pink.

So now that everything is shoved back in my knitting basket and my coffee table is mostly clear (Eric has already moved a set of speakers onto one corner and I have my camera and a pair of socks on the other), I have to go drop $70 on a photocopied reading packet for one of my classes. Weehaw.


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Have you seen Wii Kitty?

Iggs thought he'd like to get in on some of that. Hehehe.

Edit: He's there!


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A new project: Serial Art.

To motivate my studio practice, I've given myself the challenge of producing at least one work of art every day.

This works kind of like a studio blog or journal. So far it's going pretty well.

If you are interested in studio work or art in general, you may enjoy reading the notes, and I really would love feedback.

Keep in mind the site is extremely bare bones right now, but I'll make it prettier soon.

A bite of heaven

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When we went up to Boston for New Year's, Eric and I made some insanely delicious mint chocolate brownies, using this recipe from Martha Stewart's Everyday Food.

They start with a decadent batter, made totally from scratch, which sandwiches a layer of miniature York peppermint patties.

They were truly obscenely wonderful. I'm glad we made a double batch!

Winter Light

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While I was in New Jersey over Christmas, my mother and I went for a hike in Hartshorne's Woods with Otto. I was in a lousy mood, but my mom suggested I quit moping, look around some, and reconnect with nature.

The woods are perhaps more gorgeous during the winter than in their full green of spring and summer.

It's much clearer to see why trees inspire me, and if you want to know pretty much the exact source of much of my imagery, check out the photo set.

I also couldn't help noticing the similarity between the twisted bark in tree trunks and elaborate knit cables. Not surprising, but nice to remember.


See what I mean?

While we were hiking, I started thinking about how much I need to be around nature, how much it fuels my mind and my artistic process. Unfortunately I also thought about how infrequently I get to be in nature while living in Brooklyn... something to consider for next year perhaps.

A Serial Nature

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Copious consumption of chocolate cherry cordial fat-free frozen yogurt has led me to believe I am on the mend. And that I love alliteration. Or that I don't care about being sick anymore... I can't be sure.

I have been thinking lately about doing things in a serial way. Something about the start of a new year leads a lot of people down a resolution making or "Every day I will..." path, and as such the instigation of soon to be abandoned serial projects.

One of the currently more fascinating ones is the 365 Days Project on Flickr, wherein folks take and post a self-portrait every day for a year. It's a simple concept, and some of the photos in the pool are just stunning.

So I thought about doing that, but really, I'm not sure the world really needs 365 more photos of me, plus I could probably better spend that time, umm, making art. You know, like I'm supposed to?

Therefore I've set up a new (and alarmingly self-evident) serial project to be debuted as soon as I've worked the kinks out (fighting with templates, blech). Perhaps, unlike so many other of my procrastination driven diversions, this one will actually help me with school and umm, make me a better person.

We shall see.

Changing my name to Sicki

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I know it's been a while, but to recap: I went to New Jersey for Christmas, and it was lovely. I went to Boston for New Year's, and it was a blast. I came home with some gross throat and ear and sinus goo thing, which currently occupies most of my faculties.

On the Wii, there is a message center which includes a daily list of games played and duration of play. Ironically, it is titled "Today's Accomplishments." Heh, 16 hours of Wii Sports, I'm feeling damn accomplished.

I'll try to post something cogent umm, soon. Maybe I will change my resolutions from "swallow without agony" to concepts more relevant in the long term.

Meanwhile, enjoy some fall leaf and landscape photos I took in Virginia over Thanksgiving.

About this Archive

This page is an archive of entries from January 2007 listed from newest to oldest.

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