Tuesday, 17 February 2009

Art imitates life

Through a lens

As regular readers of this blog know, Landscape as Muse is one of the few television programs I go out of my way to watch, even to the point of getting up rather early some mornings.

The episode that is being run on CBC Bold today features Matthew Wheeler, taking photographs of Robson Valley. What makes this so interesting -- apart from the fact that Mount Robson is the highest point in the Canadian Rockies and rarely cloud-free -- is that Matthew makes his own lenses by freezing water and shaping it with his hands.

Well, I don't have a DSLR, but we do have a leaky eavestrough, and so with the lovely icicle that formed yesterday, I decided to feature one of my pine cones in a small homage and test.

Things have been busy here: I've had my nose to the twin grindstones of the bench and the computer, working steadily away on my Guild of Bookworkers' Marking Time entry.

No, I haven't talked about it much, for a couple of reasons: mostly, that's because it's yet another book about death and I need to keep my focus on what I'm doing and not let my emotions get in the way. So I work on it in spurts -- today being very successful -- and then play with other, happier, projects in between.

Wednesday, 4 February 2009

You do what?

Installation A2

One of the things that frustrated me last year was the reason I was turned down for a grant: "we don't consider knitting and bookbinding as valid forms of 'visual art'."

As a knitter, I'm not unfamiliar with that attitude -- over the years, I've lost track of how many times I've had strangers ask what I'm doing, and have the overwhelming majority of the women disclaim "well, I would never do anything so domestic."

But I was surprised to hear that bookbinding didn't "count" and haven't figured out why, although that attitude hasn't stopped me from working on a few projects with impending deadlines.

That doesn't mean I've quit doing anything else though.

Taking inspiration from a large bag of coniferous cones I collected last weekend and some of my earliest handspun that I found while reorganizing my fibre stash, I created a cone cosy, and then decided I needed an outdoor adventure.

What a better way to play with art than to let my little clothed gymnosperm pal go visit his relatives in the great outdoors? One encounter is documented above.

Although it wasn't the nicest day -- flat light, for starters -- it did have the desired effect: I came home charged up creatively, hungry to experiment with more textures, and with a powerful need for a hot chocolate.


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