The Need To Process

Time now to be very quiet, reflect and meditate. Time to piece together all the recent experiences and stitch them into future works.

I am enjoying a real excess of riches - Jade Dog and I blitzed the local bead markets and came away with swag enough to choke a T Rex. * We ate enough food for a small hill tribe. We took a few long walks. She taught me how to cover a large bead with right angle weave. We had a great visit and we all missed her the minute she stepped into her plane home.

Now I am left to consider the mountain of beads I've amassed.

I've done two large purges of my bead stash, one of which was just this year. Now I need to sort and organize all this. Get it all into one place where I can stand back and look at it all (currently my beads are in three separate locations). But most of all, I need to get out the old sketchbooks - the beads themselves are my curent major source of inspiration - and set up a production schedule for all the projects flying around in my brain!!

These beads ain't gonna weave themselves!!

And at the same time, I'm still working on my challenge piece. So in case you missed it, here's that clickable banner link to my challenge again, and I hope you'll think about it -


* The Bead Renaissance Show was overwhelming - if I hadn't been with a professional bead buyer I would have been stunned into immobility. Thunderbird Supply is much closer to where I live than I realized and this might not be a good thing. And it's a very GOOD thing that Kameyab Imports is so far away.


I'm Excited - Then Again . . .

On the one hand, I'm really excited! My daughter, The Jade Dog, is coming for a visit tomorrow! We haven't seen each other for over a year - and this is a great weekend for her to be here - The Bead Renaissance Show is going on at Expo New Mexico AND several of the bead shops are having some pretty sweet sales, too. I'm really looking forward to checking out Kameyab Imports - I've heard lots of great things about them; hope to hit Mama's Minerals, Thunderbird Supply, Thomason Stone Supply, and a few others if there's time. We'll be doing all sorts of bead-related nonsense for four solid days!! Whee!!

Then, on the other hand . . .

I just sent in my application to the Beadwork VI: The Beaded Book competition.



A Day of Sharing Words

Thanks to the Beadbabe for steering me to this post over at The Poetic Eye. The poem I've chosen goes by different titles, the most enduring of which is "The Possibility of Being." It was written by Rainer Maria Rilke and can be found in several of his collected works - but most easily found here.

This is the creature there has never been.
They never knew it, and yet, none the less,
They loved the way it moved, its suppleness,
Its neck, its very gaze, mild and serene.
Not there, because they loved it, it behaved
as though it were. They always left some space.
And in that clear unpeopled space they saved
it lightly reared its head, with scarce a trace
of not being there.
They fed it, not with corn,
but only with the possibility of being.
And that was able to confer such strength,
its brow put forth a horn. One horn.
Whitely it stole up to a maid - to be
within the silver mirror and in her.

I think L.K.'s idea for sharing the words and pictures that move us is so good, it's my Inspiration #47.


The Day The Blog Counter Exploded

I woke up this morning to the interesting news that one of my beadworks had been selected as a 'Daily Deviation' over at deviantART. The next thing I know, I've written and sent over 150 thank-you emails to all the folks who said nice things about me over there, and I check my blog stats and whaddya know. All those great Deviant Artists have come to visit my little blog here! Nearly 200 of them!!

To say I'm overwhelmed is understating things. I've never had such an intense response to anything I've posted on the web. Just goes to show, I guess, that artists of all media make great communities.

Thanks again go to the Beading Butterfly, who sort of goaded me into posting my beaded journal over there.

I guess I'm still a little in shock. Judging by the response, I'm more than a little encouraged to enter my journal into the Beaded Book competition. Who knows?


Inspiration #44, 45, 46 . . .

(do not adjust your monitor - I finally got around to a bit of a seasonal color change - it's a subtle change to be sure, but whatcha think of the new colors and banner?)

#44: Yoshie's Toggle Gallery - this is straight up fun. Plenty of inspiration here for new and innovative closures.

#45: Valerie Hector. This is a name you might recognize - her book is on many a beadweaver's reference shelf. Besides that, her portfolio is oozing with ideas and inspirations by the fistful.
#46: The Bead Nerd. For anyone who's truly serious about their bead business, this site is a great resource - as pointed out to me by The Jade Dog (thanks, Darcy!). Lori's multi-part article on setting goals was of particular interest to me - and maybe you, too!


Not Much Progress and A Few Asides

I haven't gotten very far with my stethoscope. I made the huge mistake of surfing eBay for lampwork spacer beads. I got an incredible deal on some and once they got here, I dropped everything else. I've been making these rings, as you can see.

Like most beaders, I'm easily distracted by shiny objects. About twelve years ago my partner Asa took me to meet a friend of his who makes pottery - more specifically, artisan and raku pottery. I remember the building as being small and crowded with all sorts of wonderful things. George, the potter, had a small handful of raku pottery beads which I snatched up instantly. Then I saw this strand of distressed wooden disk beads hanging from one of the rafters. He gave them to me with a big, toothy grin. I had no idea what I was going to do with them at the time - which is the story with most of the stuff back in my 'chunk bits' storage. Eventually I figure out why they've come to me. The minute I held the lampwork beads in my hand I knew what to do. I still have about 7 more rings planned - then I can get back to 'beading my fear.'

A Brief Aside
In my last post, I mentioned being interviewed for an online magazine-of-sorts. This is the second time I've done an interview, and I have to tell you - it's not an easy deal. They send you a list of questions and you have the discretion of answering them all or just a few and adding anything you'd like. It's really hard to do without coming off like a pompous twit. I must have edited my answers at least a dozen times and still I think I sound like an ass. My inner critic sleeps when I bead but goes on a complete tear when I write anything.

Another Aside
Site hits. The weirdest thing happened last Saturday. I have an account with BlogPatrol, which is a very cool way to track how many visitors you get to your blog, what country they're from, stuff like that. So I check my stats there about twice a week. I look back and see that for last Saturday, they recorded 105 hits to my little blog here! I KNOW that has to be wrong. I usually get 10 - 12 hits a day. I hope to find out just what happened there in the next few days. In the meantime, I'm trying hard not to flatter myself (I am a Leo, after all) that over a hundred people found their way to my little blog just out of the blue.

A Final Aside
NaNoWriMo. I had high hopes and no plot. I was kicking around all sorts of ideas, when finally a conversation with my partner Asa brought things into focus. I sunk my teeth into a fairly decent plot and got it outlined, when I got my package of lampworked beads in the mail. No NaNo win for me this year. Shiny things will be my downfall.

So in case you missed it, here's that clickable banner link to my challenge again, and I hope you'll think about it -



World Artisan Gems Interview!

World Artisan Gems

I was interviewed the other day for this great website, and I have to say I'm in some pretty heady company! Check out the site - I loved reading all those interviews in the archives. World Artisan Gems is Inspiration #42!

And on the subject of inspirations, here's #43: Libzoid!

I love everything about this site - from her blog to her gallery and all points in between.

And don't forget:

Clicking on the banner takes you to my beading challenge, in case you missed it.


Progress As Promised

When I first scanned the image of the stethoscope, something went a little wonky with my scanner - the first image I got was not the usual full-color photo render. What appeared in the monitor was a very stark black and white image. It was visually arresting to me. In that moment I knew what I wanted to do with it. I printed it and started sketching right away. Once I saw what I wanted it to be, I had to work backward in my head as to how to achieve it.

The initial stage of beading would have to be a fairly substantial base from which I could work multiple levels of embellishment. I opted for a netted base done with Japanese size 11 seed beads (color 318c) stitched with extra-fine smoke colored Fireline. I only have a bit more to go and the base is complete.

Then the fun really begins.

I'm supposed to be working on my NaNoWriMo novel right now, but I need to warm up my writing muscles with a little blogging. As long as I'm here, I'll show you my latest photos for my current favorite cuff, "Come To My Aid."

I love slide clasps. This is the first piece for which I've had the opportunity to use UltraSuede as the backing. I have to say I really love it. It doesn't have the weight or substance I'm used to with leather, but my needle loves it. I just wish it weren't quite so expensive.

And don't forget:

Clicking on the banner takes you to my beading challenge, in case you missed it.


Still, I Wish I Hadn't . . .

I'm giving up my Art Doll Quarterly collection. I've done a bit of rearranging and just needed more shelf space in the bookcase, so something had to go - I'm sure I'll have to do another weeding. It's a wonderful magazine, I really love it, and I've learned so much from all of them, but the time has come to let them go. Now they're all listed over in my destash shop at Etsy - you can see them HERE.

I can't believe I'm letting them go. But I have to. But I don't want to. You all know how that goes.

And don't forget:

Clicking on the banner takes you to my beading challenge, in case you missed it.

My progress report on that stethoscope . . .