Are you like me and have ideas about projects that excite and delight you, but can’t quite figure out how to create them in the way you’re envisioning them? I have lots of those. But I’ve learned over time that it’s more useful to me if I can set them aside when they reach that point of impasse that starts driving me crazy, knowing that perhaps at a future point in time I’ll be either be re-inspired and/or I’ll have some new skill or knowledge that makes production possible in a way that I hadn’t seen before.
One of those projects that is more a seed of an idea I’ve carried since I was a little kid and had a home printing machine where you could set type and print things. I was always so excited to play with that, but the truth became clear only minutes into it, that the effort to set even one line was agonizingly slow. While I had visions of a multi-page newspaper, I usually gave up after a sentence or two. But I suppose that early experience fueled my love for zines and artist books, and I’m always delighted when I find compilations and lists of wonderful things to look into. I try my best to share such things here on my blog, and yet after all these years I haven’t quite found a format that delights me. Something that feels like a perfect expression of me.
But I DO love sharing the fabulousities, curiosities, and brain igniters that are currently lighting up my world and so I’ll plug along and perhaps some day I’ll figure out a way to do it that feels just right. Until then, I’m opening up my brain and letting you peek in…
Let’s start with something I received for Yule – a wonderful necklace created by Jo James of Cart Before the Horse. I love her, and alternately think of her as a fairy, a butterfly being, and/or a buttoned-up angel. What do you think?
I suspect in one of my parallel lives I’m a fashionista, because although you’d never suspect if you saw me or my wardrobe, the fact is I spend an inordinate amount of imagining costumes and masks and all things adornment. Inspiring me at the moment…
- Artist Matthew Cox creates some fabulous art with embroidery and x-rays.
- It wasn’t all that long ago I discovered artist Saul Steinberg and the years-long project with photographer Inge Morath involving masks. I can’t tell you how happy this makes my heart. It’s taking some serious self-control not to walk around the house with a bag on my head.
As I’m working on a couple projects that have required I stretch beyond what I’ve felt capable of before, I’ve been thinking a lot about confidence. The fears we have around it, and the delicious push it gives us when we’re able to embody it. But confidence is a tricky thing isn’t it? Luckily The School of Life offers a little pep talk.
It’s always exciting when people see a need and come up with creatively resourceful ways to meet it. And there is a current Kickstarter campaign that is an example of what I love about the world of art and the people who inhabit it and challenge us to step up.
During the 2003 invasion of Iraq, the College of Fine Arts at the University of Baghdad lost their entire library from looters who set fire to the collection. Over 70,000 books were reduced to ashes. Iraqi-born artist Wafaa Bilal has created an exhibit 168:01 which you can read more about here. But there is also a Kickstarter project which is designed to replace all 1000 blank books used in Bilal’s exhibit with text books that will eventually be sent to the Baghdad library. Beautiful! I’m happy to support this and perhaps it will inspired you as well.
Another blessing I feel grateful to have discovered is Sophia Rose of La Abeja Herbs. La Abeja means honeybee in Spanish, so right away I knew I was onto something wonderful. As an introduction let me head you over to her lovely piece about Ancestors. And perhaps you’ll be inspired to poke around her site further as well. There’s lots of treasure.
It’s no secret I have a thing about hearts. And how perfect as we’re winding through the last days of January and headed into February, the month which unabashedly celebrates hearts, I have a couple hearts to share.
- Check out Geoff Davis of 50 Little Birds. Although I think he’s primarily known as a woodcarving artist of birds, he has a bit to say about the fascinating (at least to me) topic of frakturs. Here in an older post he talks about how to create a heart.
- Here’s a peek at my favorite bejeweled heart. I always get inspired when I see it, which is often because I have it hanging in my office.
It reminds me I want to keep my heart like that – surrounded in light and all shiny. I think Hafiz said it best:
“An awake heart is like a sky that pours light.”
Speaking of skies, one final thing to share – did you know about cloud streets? Doesn’t that conjure up the most fabulous image? Well, apparently the real thing is almost as amazing as my imaginings.
And there you have it. A tour of what’s been delighting me this week. What about you? What fabulous thing have you found? What are you curious about? What’s been igniting your brain? Do tell – you know I love to hear.