Sunday, December 30, 2007

Making a Difference

Watoto Wa Kwetu Trust and Children's Art Center

Don't we all want to make a difference somehow? It feels great to contribute in some small way. Here's your chance!
A friend of mine is helping the Watoto Wa Kwetu Trust and Children's Art Center in Kenya by selling screensavers of his photography at his site:
To learn more here is the Watoto Wa Kwetu Trust's homepage:

Farin Greer, an artist who used to live here in Wilmington and run a wonderful gallery is involved with the trust. She writes that recently one of their new volunteers- "wrote to say that many of her friends and family have been asking questions about our choice to support programs that provide creative arts, when it seems obvious to assume that most of these children probably struggle just to get their basic necessities met, be in need of food, water and shelter. Well here is what I advised her to consider and share with people who ask this question; There are in fact many new and established organizations that specifically work to assist the children(some of whom are orphaned) to have the basics.There still remains so very much to be done in all these areas.Though I will never argue that one must have the basics for the body to survive, the soul is more complex. With nurture, by means of food, water and shelter there is still the need to nurture the soul by means of expression. We desire to offer a vehicle for the children to dream beyond the moment. We believe...if you can dream it you canf ind a way to make it happen, but if there is no dream, one may just fell a victim of their environment with no hope of something better. Creativity is a doorway to hope. I hope this helps. As the sayings go: Each One Teach One and Active Spirituality Supports Reality... Please take a minute, visit our page and consider making a donation, no gift is too small. There is great power in a collective force of love and support."
If you are interested here is Farin's artwork:

Sunday, December 9, 2007

Trash! Glorious Trash!

Wasn't that an Oscar the Grouch song?
Thought I'd share... My buddy Steve Brimm gave me the heads up on Ira Glass' interview with sailor and researcher Captain Charles Moore. Captain Moore's website is fantastic
They offer resources and information, as well as handouts for teachers to print out about plastics. Thought I share some depressing photos from their research of dead albatross whose guts were full of plastic non-biodegradable trash.

Awareness- that's one thing all of us can do raise awareness. Then you can make small change. Just pay attention to how much plastic you use and how you dispose of it. Then start using less!

On a more positive note, a couple of great uplifting quotes:
"Always use the word impossible with the greatest caution" -Werner Von Braun
"The peope who get on in this world are the people who get up and look for the circumstances they want, and, if they can't find them, make them" -George Bernard Shaw

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Texas Co2 Central

Texas is the nation's biggest energy hog.... listen in:

Sunday, November 25, 2007


You MUST go check out
Su Blackwell's sculptural books....fantastical!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Go Kayak NOW!

Yes! in our area the paddling right now is excellent! Less tourists, less motor boats, cooler weather.... Just because of this Robert is scheduling a Black River Paddle this Saturday for those of you who'd rather kayak than take part in the post Thanksgiving consumer frenzy. I mean come on, wouldn't quietly gliding past birds and trees be preferable? The tour is $90, all equipment provided. To reserve a spot 910-367-2545. Robert will be offering tours and lessons all winter. This photo is one taken on the Black River by my friend Steve Brimm. Rumors are he'll be up and blogging soon if not already! Click on the post title for his website. He has high quality prints available of his gorgeous photography.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

OMG! Stranger Than Fiction!

If you have not seen Stranger Than Fiction then you must go rent it right now. RIGHT NOW! I am not kidding. My metals student all shreiked when I naively said,"What is it about?" I have cried, my face is all puffy...OMG! What a beautiful film....
did I say that already?

Monday, November 12, 2007

Take a Good hard Look at Yourself, America

This photo came in an email from my uncle. So, unfortunately, I have no idea who the photographer is.
Prophetic though....

Friday, November 9, 2007


Oh My! d
Do you have "Adultitis"? I wonder if it needs another name like the
9-2-5 Virus?
or Squaritis?

Click on the post title go to:

Take The Buy Handmade Pledge

Would you pledge to buy handmade items this season?
Go here and pledge and then tell your pals!
And ask your family and friends to do the same for you!

Thursday, November 1, 2007


My sister in law as a Cubist painting for Halloween!

Sunday, October 28, 2007

What Was Said to the Rose

And now my favorite- Coleman barks reading what Was Said to the Rose. Makes me cry everytime..... so beautiful. Coleman Barks and his "crew" came to ECU a few years ago and performed these works, moving....

Coleman Barks reading Rumi -- Only Breath

They just keep getting BETTER! ahhhhhhh......

What Circles so Perfectly....

I am on a Rumi kick! This ones awesome.
I LOVE hearing Coleman Barks read his translations hope you do too.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

The Mevlana Rumi dervishes of Damascus

unfurling the universe.... just like the making of my metal cups...spiralling... unwinding....

Rumi:The Speechless Full Moon

Walk out like someone suddenly born into it now....

Rumi: Say I Am You

"Dream" video set to John Cage

Leaf Parade

Saturday there is a parade at LEAF festival. The puppets are by Paperhand Puppet Intervention

I am glad this festival celebrates the creative and intellectual spirit of Black Mountain College. That infectious spirit seems to inhabit the rocks around Lake Eden and does not remain dormant.

Fully Awake- the film

Check out this film about Black Mountain College moving little snippet of a trailer.
Makes you wish it was still there....

Trailer-Fully Awake: Black Mountain College

Black Mountain College

More about Black Mountain College....

Buckminster Fuller at
Black Mountain College 1948
Photo by: Hazel Larsen Archer

This is from a website called Black Mountain College Project:

"Black Mountain College was an experimental college located near Asheville, North Carolina. Founded in the fall of 1933 by John Andrew Rice, Theodore Dreier and other faculty who had been fired or resigned from Rollins College the previous spring, the college sought to educate the whole student – head, heart and hand – through studies, the experience of living in a small community and manual work.

Although the founders - in a truly experimental spirit - did not wish to bind the college to a rigidly codified educational doctrine, they did have strong feelings and ideas about education. The college was to be owned and operated by the faculty. A Board of Fellows made up of faculty and one student formed the central governing body. An Advisory Board lent counsel to the community but had no legal authority. Decisions were based on consensus rather than a vote. Academic bookkeeping – grades and quality points – as a measure of an education were abolished (though grades were recorded for transfer purposes). Graduation was based on achievement of a project in the student’s area of specialization along with examinations – both written and oral – by the faculty and an outside examiner.

In 1933, the college brought Josef Albers, artist and former Bauhaus teacher, and his wife Anni Albers, a Bauhaus-trained textile designer and weaver, to teach. With their arrival, the college became a unique center for the transmission of Bauhaus teaching and philosophy. The presence of refugee artists and scholars was critical to the learning experience at Black Mountain throughout its history."

I find this all fascinating!

Friday, October 26, 2007

Lake Eden Arts Festival

Just recently went to Lake Eden Arts Festival or LEAF. So fantastic! Here's the Lake seen through Tibetan prayer flags.

The festival is held in at Lake Eden above Black Mountain, NC on the site of the original Black Mountain College which was founded in 1933 and ran until the late 50's I think. It was where Buckminster Fuller built his first geodesic dome. Noted faculty were Josef and Anni Albers, John Cage, Merce Cunningham, Max Dehn, Willem and Elaine de Kooning, Buckminster Fuller, Walter Gropius, Lou Harrison, Franz Kline, Jacob Lawrence, Richard Lippold, Charles Olson, M. C. Richards, Ben Shahn, Jack Tworkov, and Robert Motherwell. Guest lecturers included Albert Einstein, Clement Greenberg, Bernard Rudofsky, Richard Lippold and William Carlos Williams. Ceramic artists Peter Voulkos and Robert C. Turner taught there as well. Among the notable alumni of Black Mountain College are Ruth Asawa, Fielding Dawson, Michael Rumaker, Robert Rauschenberg, Dorothea Rockburne, Susan Weil, John Chamberlain, Ray Johnson, Kenneth Noland, Oli Sivhonen, Joel Oppenheimer, Jonathan Williams, Ruth Asawa, Robert De Niro, Sr., Cy Twombly, Basil King, Ray Johnson and Kenneth Snelson.

The festival is predominantly music with a delightful sprinkling of artwork, healing arts and ancient earth arts. Robert went to a fire making workshop using just sticks. And we went on an edible plant walk and did couples yoga. There is such a fantastic mix of people, families, artists and musicians that generate the most wonderful spirit of peace. We contra danced to Laura and the Lava Lamps, saw the Wilders, Michael Franti solo, The Boulder Acoustic Society, (awesome BTW) and Mizero Children's Troupe of Rowanda, Les Nubians and a Morroccan Sufi musician Hassan Hakmoun, and an Indian gypsy guitarist Oliver Rajamani. It was GREAT! We camped on site and my daughter and her friend did the giant zipline over and over.

Sunday, October 7, 2007

Plastic Bag as Art

This is the work of Paul Anthony Ramsden. Check out more on his blog:

Friday, October 5, 2007

Plastic Bag Ban!?

Shirking responsibility right now....
This was too cool. I found this blogging around:
"SAN FRANCISCO -- San Francisco's Board of Supervisors Tuesday afternoon passed an ordinance requiring large supermarkets and pharmacies in the city to replace non-biodegradable plastic bags with reusable or recyclable bags."
I have no TV (well I have one, but no cable- use it only for an ocassional movie) and I live eat and breath teaching these days. so I don't hear the news much, but man, how exciting! It was a post on this great blog:

Green is the New Black

"To this end, I am glad that San Francisco has banned retailers from using these horrid bags (the ban should have taken effect October 1for grocery stores if I’m not mistaken), and I wish Los Angeles would do the same. Hell, I wish the entire state would do the same. California has coastline out the ass that it needs to protect, and getting rid of the bags would be a great place to start.

Our legacy of plastic needs to be cut short pronto – and banning the non-biodegradable plastic bag is an excellent place to start. Bringing your own bags isn’t that difficult once you get in the habit."


Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Arrowmont with Marlene!

So I am off today to head to Arrowmont School of Arts and Crafts in TN with Marlene True to assist in her metals workshop "Tin is In!And as Good and Gold!" She the only true cowgirl I know, an awesome metalsmith and amazing person. And yes, the blue and sterling cross she made out of an antique chocolate tin. She ROCKS! The photo's blurry but too much fun!

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Banana Ghost

....two beers 1:30am
Banana ghost!
click above for fun animation!!!

Let's Play Sustainability

Click the above title to find out if you live a sustainable life!

Monday, September 24, 2007


Sometimes things move in a linear fashion. I have been trying to illustrate comcepts like these for my art appreciation students. But then there are those times when there is merely expansion.... non linear growth if it were. Little big bangs of enlightenment.... mine today has been Theo Jansen and now Popcasts! I am currently listening to Princeton University professor and "postmodern Socrates", Kwame Anthony Appiah, deconstructing on the "Golden Nugget" of Western civilisation theory. Ah....expanding the mind feels so damn good! Join me!

More, Oh YES! More Theo Jansen!

Well I couldn't get enough, how about you??? f
For a 30 minute interview and snippets of his DVD go here!
(pssst! click on the post title)

2 1/2 Minute Portrait

Not as "moving" as Theo Jansen but fun! Paintjam!


Theo Jansen (1948) studied physics at the University of Delft (The Netherlands) from 1968-1975. He left University to become an artist. He painted for the first seven years. In 1980 he built a flying saucer (15 ft flashing lights, beep sounds) that flew over Delft and set the town in commotion. Then he built a light sensitive spray-gun which paints an object on a surface. Since 1986 Theo Jansen has been writing a column for the Volkskrant (national newspaper).Since 1990 he has been working on a new creation: skeletons made of electric-conduits which walk on windpower. These animals have evolved into several generations over the last twelve years. Eventually he wants to put the animaIs out in herds on the beaches, where they live their own lives.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

B More Positive

"Life will find a way"
I believe Jeff Goldblum said this in Jurassic Park. Better to go to sleep on a good note. Loved the passionate scientist character.....

Rant of the month

I don't know about you but the last article makes me want to cry. I mean how do we even begin to clean up a non-biodegradable trash pile two times bigger than TEXAS!??? What the HELL is this world coming to? Tell me please.
I try, try, try to open eyes in the classes of the high school students I teach this semester. Not to the environment per se, but to just SEE! To be aware, AWAKE, as they walk through life! People bungle through life with their PLASTIC ipod earbuds... are they listening? Of course not, because who wants to?! Squawking about the ocean and the environment is not as catchy as a Shinns tune. Well then I hope Mother Nature wins! I hope cancer from their stinking cigarettes kills them all. I hope apes do take over the world and the Statue of Liberty ends up buried to her eyeballs. Cause I tell you what, we don't deserve this Eden, we thankless, hairless apes who gotta get down the road in our giant smoking gas burners. "Oh yes! Where we have to go with our plastic everything is so damn important, there are clients on the line! Deals to be made! Get out of the way! To hell with the big blue marble!"

That's what they think I'm sure...cell phone in hand behind their volvo/bmw/mercedes/escalade steering wheel...
I mean isn't it?
Do they know? Have they ever made anything with their hands? from earth? or wood they cut themselves and planed down? Have they grown anything? Have they ever see the lightbulb go off behind a young person's eyes?
Where's the quality I ask?
'Cause I see plenty of quantity every day.

Maybe the pretty jellyfish will soften my rant.....

Eastern Pacific Garbage Patches?! or Why I Hate Plastic

This is an article posted by Jacob Silverman for
"In the broad expanse of the northern Pacific Ocean, there exists the North Pacific Subtropical Gyre, a slowly moving, clockwise spiral of currents created by a high-pressure system of air currents. The area is an oceanic desert, filled with tiny phytoplankton but few big fish or mammals. Due to its lack of large fish and gentle breezes, fishermen and sailors rarely travel through the gyre. But the area is filled with something besides plankton: TRASH, millions of pounds of it, most of it plastic. It's the largest landfill in the world, and it floats in the middle of the ocean.The gyre has actually given birth to two large masses of ever-accumulating trash, known as the Western and Eastern Pacific Garbage Patches, sometimes collectively called the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. The Eastern Garbage Patch floats between Hawaii and California; scientists estimate its size as two times bigger than Texas [source: LA Times]."

WHAAAAA?! Texas!!!!!

"The Western Garbage Patch forms east of Japan and west of Hawaii. Each swirling mass of refuse is massive and collects trash from all over the world. The patches are connected by a thin 6,000-mile long current called the Subtropical Convergence Zone. Research flights showed that significant amounts of trash also accumulate in the Convergence Zone.

The garbage patches present numerous hazards to marine life, fishing and tourism. But before we discuss those, it's important to look at the role of PLASTIC. Plastic constitutes 90 percent of all trash floating in the world's oceans [source: LA Times]. The United Nations Environment Program estimated in 2006 that every square mile of ocean hosts 46,000 pieces of floating plastic [source: UN Environment Program]. "

HANG ON! Did he just say 46,000 pieces... EVERY SQUARE MILE!???
I thought so, resume:

"In some areas, the amount of plastic outweighs the amount of plankton by a ratio of six to one."

Ummmm.... okay,if you're not unnerved...

"Of the more than 200 billion pounds of plastic the world produces each year, about 10 percent ends up in the ocean [source: Greenpeace]. Seventy percent of that eventually sinks, damaging life on the ocean floor [source: Greenpeace]. The rest floats; much of it ends up in gyres and the massive garbage patches that form there, with some plastic eventually washing up on a distant shore.

The main problem with plastic -- besides there being so much of it -- is that it doesn't biodegrade."

Oh and btw, it secretes TOXINS! Sorry for interrupting. Please, continue.

"No natural process can break it down. (Experts point out that the durability that makes plastic so useful to humans also makes it quite harmful to nature.) Instead, plastic photodegrades. A plastic cigarette lighter cast out to sea will fragment into smaller and smaller pieces of plastic without breaking into simpler compounds, which scientists estimate could take hundreds of years. The small bits of plastic produced by photodegradation are called mermaid tears or nurdles.These tiny plastic particles can get sucked up by filter feeders and damage their bodies. Other marine animals eat the plastic, which can poison them or lead to deadly blockages. Nurdles also have the insidious property of soaking up toxic chemicals."

Oh good he mentions the toxins...

"Over time, even chemicals or poisons that are widely diffused in water can become highly concentrated as they're mopped up by nurdles. These poison-filled masses threaten the entire food chain, especially when eaten by filter feeders that are then consumed by large creatures."

How LOVELY! And we keep making MORE of the stuff, thinking its just great. I mean hey, it doesn't break! right? Wow how man has come up with some great stuff! We're surrounded by plastic...shoot me now.

Too read more by Jacob Silverman on the subject go to:

Friday, September 21, 2007


I have fallen behind in my posting!
And I owe so many people pics, I've been snapping and not burning!
So in this spare ten minutes I am trying to download off the camera and thought I'd share this moment at the recent IAC show "Felt Up". It is Cindi Buell with Stanley Newton and her felt racing typewriter. Smokin'!

Sunday, September 9, 2007

Absolutely Yummy site

I just stumbled onto this website
Abolutely yummy, dreamy,
historical photogravures.
sweat dreams!

Friday, September 7, 2007

Are You A Magpie?

I know I am...
any found trinkets,
shiny or rusty
end up in my pockets,
on my dresser
in jars,
on ledges.
in window sills,
lining my nests

want to brag on my friend John W Golden.
Check out his new print of a Magpie available in his Etsy shop:

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Tequila and Salt

Another long exhausting day and a long hard night of making powerpoint presentations for tomorrow ahead of me, when I come home to this email from Janice:

"Tequila and Salt"

This should probably be taped
to your bathroom mirror
where you could read it every day.
You may not realize it,
but it's 100% true.

1. There are at least two people in this world
that you would die for.

2. At least 15 people in this world
love you in some way.

3. The only reason anyone would ever hate you
is because they want to be just like you.

4. A smile from you can bring happiness to anyone,
even if they don't like you.

5. Every night, SOMEONE thinks about you
before they go to sleep.

6. You mean the world to someone.

7. You are special and unique.

8. Someone, that you don't even know exists, loves you.

9. When you make the biggest mistake ever,
something good comes from it.

10. When you think the world has turned its back on you
take another look.

11. Always remember the compliments you received and
forget about the rude remarks.

Good friends are like stars........
You don't always see them,
But you know they are always there.
And always remember....
that when life hands you Lemons,
ask for Tequila and Salt and call me over!

Way to go Janice you just made my day....

Horoscope du Jour

My e-horoscope for today was: "You have the potential to be sharper than usual today. You're able to see beneath the surface and understand why things are the way they are. Weak arguments crumble in the face of your intense perceptions so go ahead and strip away the fluff to connect with core issues. Words hold the power to make real changes, so use them wisely."
I am to teach High School students today about art, how to think critically about it and what it means to really see. hm....
Thought I'd add this photograph by American photographer Sally Mann, here's a link:
She's one of my all time favorites. A girlfriend turned me onto her work many, many moons ago.

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Tokyo Dance Trooper

Saw this on someone elses blog...thought it was too funny.

Monday, August 20, 2007

Good Quotes

Yep, used to keep journals and time, only blogggggg.
MAN!! COOL class group I have at CFCC I think we're up to 10. Very interesting mix of backgrounds and personalities. I am PUMPED!

Then tonight stumbled onto this- interesting words from Lelainia Lloyd's website. She's "a mixed media and textile artist living and working on the beautiful West coast of British Columbia, Canada" her site:

First of all this should be about motherhood!:
"Sometimes being a friend means mastering the art of timing. There is a time for silence. A time to let go and allow people to hurl themselves into their own destiny. And a time to prepare to pick up the pieces when it's all over."
~ Gloria Naylor

Then this:
"Tell me who you love, and I'll tell you who you are."
~ Creole Proverb

Then thank heavens I found Robert Smith! And honestly, what a nice thing to inventory... all the people I love.
I think I shall list to list things in a little notebook each night. For instance all the things I am grateful know the way cream swirls in coffee early on a cool mountain morning by a camp fire, lightening bugs under banana trees (last night at my best buddies house! awesome!) the sounds baby chickadees make in the birdhouse. that kind of stuff...I like a good dozen each night written down in list form. I'm such hoarder! Even hoarding events, memories and moments, sheesh!

Then this one:
"Do not keep the alabaster boxes of your love and friendship sealed up until your friends are dead. Fill their lives with sweetness, speak approving words while their ears can hear them and while their hearts can be filled by them."
~ William Childs

Oh too true, life is so fleeting and really... can one really squander love? Isn't it self-perpetuating...I mean isn't everyone, even the most miserable humans deserving of some? I can't believe honest love can go wasted.
What wonderful quotes. Thanks Lelainia!
So what are you waiting for? Go tell someone how much they mean to you... go on!

More Surf Music

I am bummed that the local band "The Noseriders" have no website, that I know of, for me to share, but here's another local band I love. The Da Howlies!

My New Hangout

My new favorite hangout....Ocean Grill Tiki Bar.
Many know that I have a barely contained passion for all things tiki and a companion love of surf guitar. My favorite band is the Mermen of San Fransisco.
But I have finally visited Ocean grill and had the treat of hearing the Noseriders, while there munching on fried shrimp and sipping a lovely concoction called Ocean Potion, which came with fruit in the top. Nothing like yummy coconutty drinks with fruit! No umbrella though, it would have blown away in the constant breeze. My compadre Donna and I dubbed it the perfect cool mom hang out, the kids romp below and leave you alone... well kinda. They drove our bartender crazy asking for refills of shirleytemples, bless her heart. The Noseriders are AWESOME! Their epic tune Rooster Tail is my fav. They even did a great cover of Secret Agent Man. They had to drag me away....

Thursday, August 16, 2007


Just a quick post because I'm on my second homemade traditional margarita, Robert is teaching me how to make them. ahhhhh, the typos will abound. We are working on his website and his Squidoo lens.... shhhhh! not ready yet!
I am excited because I love the computer... I love photoshop and the web and communticating with a huge group of geeks like myself, and I am initiating him. He doesn't copy paste with keystrokes!!! gah! Frankly, he never knew about it all.... I don't think... he says I have mad game skills whipping about in photoshop and dreamweaver... Yay! mad skills!
Well, when we unveil, you, my gentle readers, will be the first to know! wheee! More margarita! did I spell that right? why oh why doesn't blogger have spellcheck...or does it and I don't know?

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Sugar in my Coffin

"So if I gotta go I want some sugar in my coffin....." too cool

Curtis Eller's american Circus

Monday, August 13, 2007

The Wiyos!

Okay, on the subject of music... can't say enough about these guys.
The Wiyos!
I discovered them at Leaf Festival last year. They played a song I have loved for awhile, "Cornbread and Butterbeans"
I came off the plank bench with a involuntary shriek. Not a song played by many. It was originally recorded in the 40's by the Carolina Sunshine Trio at WPAQ.

Here's the Wiyos performing it:
God, I love this song... I guess 'cause you cain't stay down whilst its playin'

Saturday, August 11, 2007

To Etsy or not to Etsy

That is the question. My boyfriend thinks Etsy is a waste of my time. He is probably right. Estyians whine about shipping and handling, so you just can't charge much or people won't buy. And you have to list, list, list, and comment to be seen and to generate sales. And I handmake everything, so I'm not like the etsyians who print their work and can push a button to make their product. Though they still have to do the same listing, etc. Still, printing cuts 2-3 hours of manufacturing time. The argument rages on between us and now I have to refund one of my 10 sales. Oddly, it has caused something interesting this refund, it has sparked friendship. The ring doesn't fit so the person must return since it can't be sized. But they emailed me after visiting my site, and my blog, and we've become friends. The letter touched me so much it made me cry. Here's a snippet:

"It (the ring) will find another soul who can smell the Ocean and who has that kind of relationship with the Sea. It was a great and wonderful experience for me!! Artfulness is of the heart. I am better to have shared this aspect of your beautiful life. Thank you for the opportunity."

This is what I get out of Etsy. A connection with other folks who want to connect through things that are handmade. Maybe that is enough. Maybe I won't ever make much money on Etsy. I quit caring.

Friday, August 10, 2007

The Avett Brothers

I think I may be a 43 yr old groupie.
I know it's pathetic,
but aren't the Avetts just the best ever????
Quote from their myspace page:

"It costs nothing to be honest, loyal and true."

Their myspace:

O! and Langhorne Slim

O! and I like Langhorne Slim....
same concert!!!
Check out Honey Pie its awesome!!!!!
I can't wait! hope he plays it!!!

oooo! Old Ceremony!

I really like this band that is playing
at the Harvest Festival with the
Avetts on the 8th!!
Go to their myspace:

Get to Love is a great tune!!!!!

Chernobyl Ghost Town

This photo is from a site I wanted to share. Elena rides her motorcycle into the ghost town of Chernobyl to photograph and explore.

Thursday, August 9, 2007

The Skinny on the Ring Workshop!

Tubeset Gemstone Ring Workshop with Adrienne Grafton:
Learn to set round faceted stones in tubing to adorn rings, brooches, necklaces and more. In this workshop, you will complete a silver ring with a tubesetting. The instructor will provide a kit for each student that includes burs, tubing and three 3mm faceted stones. The cost of this kit is included in the cost of the class.

Metalsmithing experience required, you should know how to solder and fabricate with sterling.
Please bring your own silver sheet and wire and your favorite small handtools, like pliers and files.

cost of class: $100 (includes kit)
class size: 5

Adreinne's Biography:

Adrienne M. Grafton earned a MFA in Metal Design from East Carolina University in 2005 and a BFA from Edinboro University of Pennsylvania in 2000. Her recent work, inspired by dreams and metaphors, is fabricated sculptural pieces made of copper and silver, often enriched with gold leaf. Adrienne received the Judy Cheteyan Education Scholarship from the Society for Contemporary Craft in Pittsburgh, PA in 2004. She has shown her work at the NC State University Gallery of Art and Design in Raleigh, NC and taught metals workshops at the Society for Contemporary Craft and Pullen Art Center in Raleigh. Her work has been published in The Art of Enameling, 1000 Rings, 500 Necklaces and 500 Earrings. Adrienne worked as the Metals Studio Coordinator at Penland School of Crafts in Penland, NC from 2005 to 2007 and is currently living in Warren, PA working full time in her studio.

Too Precious to Wear -Corals At Risk

Thank you , Liz, for the great link!

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

Using CORAL! my pet peeve

its the use of coral.... I love it...can't get enough of it!
But I can't use it anymore.
Lately on Etsy there are loads of women making jewelry with coral and they are saying things like:
"this is made from fast growing non-endangered coral....This is bamboo coral which is not endangered" etc....

They're full of crap.

I have searched all over the internet to try to find a "fast growing coral"
can't find one.
Maybe bamboo coral is faster than others...I dunno...most of the things I read say that it take hundreds of years for layers to build in reefs. So if fishing methods destroy reefs... how can we use coral for adornment and not feel we are contributing in some way to the impact!?
I read this on MSNBC this morning:
"BANGKOK, Thailand - Coral reefs in much of the Pacific Ocean are dying faster than previously thought, according to a study released Wednesday, with the decline driven by climate change, disease and coastal development.
Researchers from the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill found that coral coverage in the Indo-Pacific — an area stretching from Indonesia’s Sumatra island to French Polynesia — dropped 20 percent in the past two decades.
About 600 square miles of reefs have disappeared since the 1960s, the study found, and the losses were just as bad in Australia’s well-protected Great Barrier Reef as they were in poorly managed marine reserves in the Philippines.
“We found the loss of reef building corals was much more widespread and severe than previously thought,” said John Bruno, who conducted the study along with Elizabeth Selig. “Even the best managed reefs in the Indo-Pacific suffered significant coral loss over the past 20 years.”
The study, which examined 6,000 surveys of more than 2,600 Indo-Pacific coral reefs done between 1968 and 2004, found the declines began earlier than previously estimated and mirror global trends. The United Nations has found close to a third of the world’s corals have disappeared, and 60 percent are expected to be lost by 2030.
The Indo-Pacific contains 75 percent of the world’s coral reefs and provide a home for a wide range of marine plants and animals. They provide shelter for island communities and are key source of income, mostly from the benefits of fishing and tourism. “Indo-Pacific reefs have played an important economic and cultural role in the region for hundreds of years and their continued decline could mean the loss of millions of dollars in fisheries and tourism,” Selig said in a statement. “It’s like when everything in the forest is gone except for little twigs.”
Predators, disease are also blamed. While the study didn’t examine the cause of the decline, Bruno said he believed it was driven by a range of factors including warming waters due to climate change. He also blamed storm damage, runoff from agriculture and industry, predators like fast-spreading crown-of-thorn starfish and diseases like White syndrome.
Bruno said the study demonstrated the need to better manage reefs and prevent threats such as overfishing, but acknowledged local measures would have little impact without a reduction of greenhouse gases.
“It is just one more example of the striking, far reaching effects of climate change and our behavior,” Bruno said of the link between climate change and reef destruction. “It is the folks in North Carolina driving their SUVs. It is their behavior that is having an effect way out in the Indo-Pacific.” Ove Hoegh-Guldberg, director of the Center for Marine Studies at The University of Queensland in Australia, said the study should put to rest any suggestion that reefs like the Great Barrier Reef are untouched by “human pressures.” “This is a solid study that produces mounds of evidence that suggests reefs are changing counter to the untested and ungrounded claims that it isn’t happening,” Hoegh-Guldberg, who was not involved in the study, said in an e-mail interview.”

So if we don't change our behavior???? what then? I love coral! I don't want to quit using it...but I think I have to.

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Julian Beever

Ashley turned me onto this dude:
RAD pavement paintings that are optical illusions.
The walls and stairs and guy are real...everything else?

Cool Urban Installations

Very cool stuff....
There are videos of this guy making this stuff....

The Gurls in my Posse

My girls...kickin' it in lower metals at Penland this summer in Joost & Dianne's class.... Adrienne, my former roomy and my girlyfriend Marion. I missed this class at Penland and could kick myself!!! Met Joost and Dianne at the Avetts concert in HOB-Chicago in '06. Uber cool couple.....

Don't miss Adrienne's workshop in my studio this September!!!
She rocks.....

Joost was a previous Saul Bell Award winner.
Here's Joost working:

More of Joost Durlings work:

Workshop with Ace!

Newsflash! Adrienne Grafton -aka Ace, and I are cooking up a workshop for you metals junkies! You! yes you, can spend Tuesday September 11th from 6-9 with the awesome Adrienne in my studio making a ring with a tube set faceted gem. Some soldering and basic metals experience is required. Adrienne was the Metals Studio coordinator for Penland School for the last two years. Her resume and metals teaching experience are extensive. She is a fabulous teacher, you won't want to miss this. More details to come.

Sunday, August 5, 2007


Today...such a good day.... bike ride around Middle Sound Loop...low flying osprey parents and offspring cheeping.....
then this...the channel...swimming off a dredge spoil island.
If I moved out into the country, or to Washington state... how could I leave this?

Friday, August 3, 2007

Metals at CFCC

Hey! if you are interested Cape Fear Community College has hired me to teach a night metals class
Here's a link;

Thursday, August 2, 2007

No cell phones

Drifting in the cypress forest, not something many people do...but they should. Its like being in on an alien planet if you spend your days driving the baking asphalt, sitting at traffic lights, on your cell phone, on hold with the IRS....
A little time out here will change you.

Cypress Forest

Our group on the Black river amongst the cypress.

We think these are heron tracks in the shallow tanin colored water.