Hey old man! A silly collage I just found from 2012/2013ish.
January 18, 2015
By far the most thrilling thing I learned at Arrowmont was fabric marbling. It is a quick, playful craft. We worked with mainly cottons and silks, but also experimented with a number of other fabrics as well. Certain synthetics worked surprisingly well. We even witnessed a few amazing wood marbling demos. I left with yards of marbled fabric (mostly cut down to test sizes). I am so excited to do more with this technique in the future. I am positively brimming with ideas...
January 8, 2015
Tennessee. I met some incredible people and worked very, very hard. Truth be told, my couple of months there were not as creatively fertile as I had hoped they would be. Week after week I worked the morning shift in the kitchen- up at 5am and too often crashing into bed at 2:30 in the afternoon for naps that always left me grouchy and slightly depressed. While I didn't produce as much new work as I had anticipated, I did manage to do a lot of writing; inspiration was aplenty and I left with a lot of new ideas. I also found time to start re-building my website. Slow but steady progress on that front. One of my favorite nights there was my last- Halloween! Frankie (see his website here), one of the artists in residence, planned an elaborate Dolly Parton-themed murder mystery party. I had an absolute blast playing one of the murderers and dressing up in a silly tie-dye jumpsuit!
After Tennessee I made my way to Western Massachusetts, where I took an amazing week-long weaving course taught by Becky Ashenden of the Vavstuga School. Becky has woven for many years in the Swedish tradion: her methods are tried, true, and beautifully refined. Learning from her was a very different experience than weaving at Penland; the focus was more on mastering the basics of the craft, whereas Penland had been more about conceptual and creative thought. It was a challenging five days in which I managed to weave two small table cloths, a wool blanket, and a dishtowel. The speed and determination of those days gave me a small glimpse of what it might be like to have my own production line. It gave me a lot to think about. Vavstuga School has an apprenticeship program and it is something I would absolutely love to do someday.
September 19, 2014
I have arrived in the Great Smoky Mountains. Gatlinburg is a little bit Dolly, a little bit Disney, a little bit Vegas, and a little bit Twilight Zone. In my first half hour here I sampled ten different kinds of wine out of plastic shot glasses, which mostly tasted like Capri Sun mixed with alcohol. I think my favorite was the 'Redneck Riesling'. Ahem. Every third store on the main strip appears to sell either moonshine or fudge, which I suppose is alright by me. I plan on spending most of my time in the studio anyway.
Passing through Asheville on the way here was bittersweet; I felt like I was going back to Penland. Fingers crossed I will be able to return there in the spring and weave again. My classes here at Arrowmont have been switched around a little bit so I am now taking: a silk marbling class, a mixed media bookbinding class, and a paper cutting class. I'm most excited for silk marbling. Originally I was going to take photo screen-printing, which unfortunately got cancelled at the last minute. Breakfast is at 7:30am tomorrow (oh god), followed by orientation the rest of the day.
For the love of making... here it goes!