Saturday, March 27, 2010

For Your Entertainment - Lost Things

Lost Things is a short stop-motion film... Written & Directed by - Angela Kohler.

It is a short dose (2minutes 12 seconds) of sweet, dream-like imagery that made my smile and may well do the same for you.

If you enjoyed that little video, the good news is there are many more lovely bits at her blog.

Angela Kohler
a sketchbook haphazard
photographic flotsam and jetsam with a side of doodle soup, please.
This would be the link (portal?) to her blog

Angela is an independent photographer. The quote on her bio reads:

When I was small I wanted to be a ballerina, or a painter, or a magician, or a trapeze artist.
Now I am a photographer, which is kind of like being all those things, only you get to fly more and don't have to worry as much about your figure.

Watching video shorts like this make me wonder what a young Federico Fellini would have put up on youtube had he been born in our era.


Friday, March 26, 2010

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

And a wee bit of Irish Cheer

These things I warmly wish to you-
Someone to love
Some work to do
A bit o' sun
A bit o' cheer
And a guardian angel always near.

Happy St. Patrick's Day


Monday, March 15, 2010

A Shabby Journal for Artfest

Here is a completed example of a Remains of the Day/ Shabby Journal that I put together after taking a Mary Ann Moss on-line class. It is a gift to my daughter and intended to travel to Artfest with her in about a week.

Mary Ann describes her class as being both process and project oriented. She shows you how to construct a shabby but sturdy book structure using all that paper you've been hoarding. She loves options, and with this journal there are plenty! Use it for your next:
Travel Journal
Weekly or Monthly Diary
Ultra Funkified Day Planner
Visual Journal without paint

You can find Mary Ann Moss here:

Here is a close-up of the grand button that is part of the closure.

Pages in this journal alternate between heavily decorated scrap paper patchwork collage and calmer, less decorated areas that can be written upon. I doodle with pen, markers and the sewing machine stitch line. Threads are deliberately left hanging in several places.

The focus is a little off in the photograph above, but it illustrates a unique closure. A piece of Kleenex box is attached to an envelope flap and then slit so that it sits around a vertical strip of heavy printed paper. The envelope is functional for enclosing paper and other small items.

It is a made up concept that guys in Easter Bunny costumes are just so French, but as editor of the shabby journal, these are decisions you can make. This is a page from a magazine gathered during a trip that I took to visit the daughter when she was in France.

As someone that routinely constructs scrap based postcards, I have an excuse for the hoarding all manner of paper bits and images. Now, they have yet another place to go live.

Here you can see the journal laid open. There are a variety of pocket structures, both paper and fabric, vertical and horizontal. The fabric interior of the journal has a bold black and white striped pattern.

Another open spread is pictured here.

Think of this as a perfect place to deposit your deep thoughts, shallow thoughts, and everything in between. As it is so scrappy and free form, this journal presents less of the intimidation that blank pages sometimes create. You are free to start adding to it on any given page.

The idea is to tuck in purchased postcards as you write them to yourself and various bits of paper ephemera from the trip. For example one could do a mini review of a restaurant meal on the back of the guest check or just describe the cute waiter and tuck that in somewhere.

I used a fair amount of paper bits from previous travels in the Pacific Northwest for the construction this journal.

This tight close-up of the page above is one of my favorite images from the quickie photo shoot before popping this journal in the mail this morning.


Friday, March 12, 2010

Nothing but Crocus!

After walking the dog and settling down with morning coffee, I checked the weather forecast and saw rain was the dominant theme for the upcoming weekend.

As the crocus here was reaching peak bloom, some photographic documentation of that very fact seemed in order.

So I grabbed the camera and laid on my belly in the damp leaves and took a few crocus portraits.

I take pleasure in the energy displayed by these blossoms pushing leaves and last season out of the way and insisting that spring is upon us.

The corms that become crocus each spring are not very large and tend to multiply in sites they like. After the blooms and leaves go dormant it is easy to unearth the corms during normal gardening activities. As a result the flowers show up in place they were never planted.

Perhaps the squirrels help in this random corm distribution. Each year there are more crocus blossoms in the lawn, and as I do not use commercial weed killer, these rather lovely weeds persist.

Most of these blossoms are in their intended sites at the edge of the wood.

As it was still cool out and the blooms had yet to open, no honey bees had arrived to have their picture taken. As the day warms and the blossoms open, the bees take to this early season nectar source avidly.

I could not hang about to observe the work of bees as my own work beckoned and it was time to head for the shower and a change of clothes.


Thursday, March 11, 2010

Celebrating the life of Granny D

Just a few words to mark the passing of a woman I greatly admired. This past Tuesday Doris "Granny D" Haddock departed this earth and Dublin, New Hampshire at age 100.

Portrait by Robert Shetterly

Her portrait and this quote from her can be found in the children's book "Americans Who Tell The Truth"

Just as an unbalanced mind can accumulate stresses that can grow and take on a life of their own, so little decisions of our modern life can accumulate to the point where our society finds itself bombing other people for their oil, or supporting dictators who torture whole populations--all so that our unbalanced interests might be served.

Granny D entered mainstream public awareness when she walked from southern California to Washington D.C. to advocate for campaign reform.

By clicking on the purple toned You Tube link below you can watch a short video featuring Doris.

Doris was a liberal activist with several interests and causes. She was scheduled to speak at Fighting Bob Fest this past September in Baraboo, Wisconsin, but took the advice of her doctors advising against traveling. She sent a video message rather than appearing, so I did not get to see this little dynamo speak in person.

To me Granny D embodied the spirit of democracy and the power of one committed person to create change. I hope to channel her spirit when the advocacy for change becomes tough sledding.


Monday, March 8, 2010

Birds of a Feather

A co-worker saw this while on a trip and thought of me.
It is tagged as a hornbill formed over a seed pod.

I think it looks a little like a Guinea hen.

My friend is of the opinion that it looks more like an Ibis.

Hornbills come in several varieties but all of them have horns this big or bigger.

All I can say is that it is nice to have pals that think of you when the unusual presents itself. Here I posed the bird with a card from the Anahata Katkin collection. And check out the little accordion playing alien hanging out in the shadows of upper right hand corner of the photo above.

As it says
Thank God we aren't the only freaks.


Saturday, March 6, 2010

Feed Your Head

This mornings e-mails brought notification and a call for entries at the second annual Edible Book Festival at Bookworks in Asheville, North Carolina. It is an off-shoot of the International Edible Book Festival.

March of the Penguins

The International Edible Book Festival is a creation of Judith A. Hoffberg and Béatrice Coron. Judith got the idea over a Thanksgiving turkey with book artists in 1999, and Béatrice created Books2Eat website, where despite the distances everybody can enjoy worldwide creations. They contacted friends and colleagues. Their first event happened in 2000.

April 1st is the birthday of French gastronome Jean-Anthelme Brillat-Savarin (1755-1826), famous for his book Physiologie du goût, a witty meditation on food. April fools' day is also the perfect day to eat your words and play with them as the "books" are consumed on the day of the event.

Bookworks Event Poster

Bon Appetit!

About the Edible Book Festival at Bookworks in Asheville: The Edible Book Festival unites bibliophiles, book artists and food lovers to celebrate the ingestion of culture and its fulfilling nourishment. Participants create edible books that are exhibited, documented then consumed. For more information and images, visit

Tortilla Flat by John Steinbeck

Puns are obviously encouraged.
A similar event in Seattle featured titles such as Much Ado About Muffin, The Old Man and the Brie, Chow Mein Kampf, The Velveeta Rabbit, Good Night Moon-Pie, Olive or Twist? and Gorky Pork.

Wonderbread Woman

Check out the Flickr stream of Rakka Wonderbread Woman creator at

At the end of each festival the exhibits are consumed. Some are likely tastier than others.

If your entry wins a prize, better get some photographs because your masterpiece will not be coming home!

Goodnight Moon Pie

If you use the link to get to the international site that Béatrice Coron created, be sure to click on albums at the top of the page and take a slideshow view of notable entries over the years.

My mind is in overdrive thinking about book titles and possibilities for odd constructions.


Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Five, Six - Pick up Sticks

Spring is coming, surely it is.
Mary Engelbreit and her old calendar pages start yet another post.
Somewhere, I have a hand knitted cap in this same color scheme.

One, two buckle my shoe
Three, four shut the door
Five, six pick up sticks.

When I was out taking snow photos yesterday morning, I spotted the handiwork of the next door neighbor girls, apparently interrupted,
because they never got to....

Seven, eight lay them straight.

Hopefully, some cocoa was involved.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

New month - Same forecast

A page from an old Mary Engelbreit calendar and a quote from Kurt Vonnegut Jr. will start out this post.

Johnny Wood our local morning news anchor would seem to personify Mr. Vonnegut's quote. With a face and a physique more suited to radio, he is the beloved fixture of our local morning news programming and is often quoted. The quote from yesterday has become the title and theme of this post, "New month, same forecast".

Yesterday morning, I walked the dog in 29 degree temperatures with a light snow falling.

As hungry as I am for spring and greenery, I had to admit it was a very lovely snow, one of those that sits lightly and traces the edges and outlines surfaces.

With the dog walked and tucked back in to his warm doggy bed, I ventured back out to get the garbage to curbside and camera in hand to take few shots.

Coneflower seed heads pose holding snowflakes.

And the mailbox awaits postcard and letter delivery.