“Once the fabric of a just society is undone, it takes generations to weave it back together.” —Deepak Chopra
July: I worked on my coursework for my positive psychology class. I created a handbag out of a friend’s damaged Audi seat. I was generously given a huge amount of fabric that was just beautiful to work with for the SEABA fashion show coming up. I read a lot about the psychology of geography—the study of how we behave in relation to our environment. I traveled to South Dakota to visit my family and was lucky enough to get to shoot some photographs at the Burke Stampede Rodeo. Oh, cowboys…
August: I sketched, sewed, painted and made handbags…a big blitz of work. Using the company SPOONFLOWER I got photographs printed onto fabric. My daughter, Lucy wore a skirt I made with an abandoned farmhouse photo I shot in South Dakota on it. I used rust prints Elizabeth Bunsen created with Nebraska license plates to create fabric as well. Burlington master goldsmith— Jane Frank designed jewelry worn in the show—the pieces were such a beautiful compliment to the clothes.
September was a blur: The fashion show was entirely consuming the first 10 days of the the month. I love to be in flow and entirely focused on one thing. Deadlines are my jam. However, this year I also needed to create my final project for my Positive Psychology course at the same time . I graduated and got to spend a week at Kripalu in Lenox, Mass with a remarkable bunch of people from all around the world. Later in the month my husband and I went to the Champlain Valley Classic Car show, taking photos and talking to classic car enthusiasts was just great after being so busy.
October: I turned 50 on the 12th. I was taken to Martha’s Vineyard by friends. My husband surprised me by getting my folks, my sister and my brother-in-law to Vermont for a long weekend to celebrate with me. That was remarkable AND he threw a party complete with my friends putting on a musical review, poetry, singing songs and making me feel so unbelievably grateful for my life. I took a few of my favorite images ever and layered more photos. Jeff and I dressed as Diego Rivera and Frida Kahlo for Halloween.
November: I traveled to Burke, South Dakota. I took photos of Herrick that made current and former Herrick residents very happy and remarkably nostalgic. I got to hang out with my great nephew, Liam (oh, and the rest of my clan). I created digital images of my own planet based on a conversation with my son. The planet New Vagus is based on the vagus nerve—the power center of our nervous system. I wrote. I cried when Leonard Cohen died.
December: I made leather pendants for gifts. I kept playing with the image of a South Dakota two-lane road, layering the photo and playing with the visuals of memory. I created a line of scarves with my images on them. I will post the link soon if you are interested in ordering one.
January 2017 is off to an interesting start. I’m cleaning out the basement—sorting through letters, photos, the kids clothes I’ve saved, toys, books and all of the things I can’t believe I now have to deal with. I’m learning a lot about myself and why things seemed so very important to me.
Turning 50 is an interesting age to take a look back, look ahead, try to stay in the moment and not get too stuck in any one place.
I love when the creative process starts to “click”…when it goes from conceptual to…HERE WE GO. My inspiration is silent film stars meet bohemian modern and this image of Gloria Swanson is my muse.
After months of hunting for fabric, trim and pieces to alter—constant sketching and research—it’s time to look closely at the details of the collection that will make it “walk” really well down the runway. Here are a few of the inspirations. I tried to alter my palette to include more grey. But, I keep coming back to these warmer tones. I guess I shouldn’t fight it.
I am a big fan of the blurred lines between what’s real and what’s not.
A quick digital sketch to get my creative brain working this morning.
Yesterday I didn’t feel remotely creative. Over the weekend I showed my studio to my niece and she thought it was cool but really disorganized. I usually don’t mind my space messy but when I stepped in to the studio yesterday I realized she was entirely right. It was not very inspiring. There was a lot of garbage around. And I didn’t know what textiles I had for working on a current project. So, yesterday when I cleaned and hauled out two large bags of garbage and recycling I did sort of feel like an organizational Rock Star. When I don’t feel creative, I clean. I still have a lot of spaces to organize, but it’s a start and doing one chunk at a time is so much less overwhelming than thinking I need to do the whole space. I was told once that when you have the desire to get rid of things that you are making room in your life for new possibilities. I wonder what’s next?