Thursday, August 20, 2015

Searching for Roy G Biv 4 - Brown - update 2

Welcome to the August installment of Roy G Biv. July saw the end of the formal Roy G Biv alphabet of colors. As we did last year, Julie and I have decided to extend the rainbow through the end of the year. August's color is brown. Enjoy!

 on the way to Santa Fe last October

 humongous leaf in Jamaica

 Waiting my turn at the Adventure Park
Ellie just crossed.

 Button quail (above) and glasswing butterfly (below) at 
South Deerfield, MA

 logs at Long Ridge Farm

 Sandra Brownlee's wondrous brown valise

If you've browns to share, just leave a comment for Julie or myself and we'll be happy to link to your blog post. Stay tuned for updates.


For more wonderful browns, hop over to see the offerings of

Susan and Elizabeth at PG Fiber2Art 

Take a look at these posts as well:

Velma at wake robin
Kris at Coloring Outside the Lines


have joined in the search as well. Stroll on over to see their browns.


September 17 -metallic gold
October 15 -grey
November 19 -pink

December 17 - blogger's choice

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Sandra Brownlee at Long Ridge Farm - Day 4

Day 4 = words

Words on cars,

on bridges,

and on paper.

Sandra gave us the task of choosing 3 words from the previous day to write and hang on the fence line.

We viewed the words, seemingly disconnected yet related. Whispered words floated on the breeze as did the sound of pens against paper as some were jotted in notebooks, memories needing to be recorded. Bird song filled the air as we read the words aloud.

Then we set about organizing them into thoughts

like lines from a poem.

We took time to be thoughtful about the fence lines

and read them aloud before

editing and rearranging them

into whole new thoughts carrying deeper meaning.

Choose your favorite and stamp it over and over on this piece of cloth was our next assignment.

So we did.

As I stamped my choice, I set the just used stamp (red) on my notebook pages in random order. Once the ink dried, I stamped the full phrase atop the random marks. I don't remember whose words* these are, but they touched my soul and have become very dear to me.

words on body
on stone
on paper
on elephant
on cloth 
on stick
on skin 

*Velma Bolyard

Our fence line prose was recorded on a larger cloth - each of us taking a section to stamp.

I am so delighted to be here

Yes. That says it all.

Friday, August 14, 2015

Sandra Brownlee at Long Ridge Farm - Day 3

Each morning of Sandra Brownlee's Tactile Notebooks and the Written Word workshop at Long Ridge Farm found us gathering by the fence line to observe the wonders that Sandra had hung as samples and inspiration of/for the day's teachings. Last Friday the line was hung with words - typed, printed, crocheted, painted, tatooed, stitched...the list is endless.

Day 3 = Words

We had time to look, to be awestruck,

to soak in the glory of words and letters

in whatever form or

or shape they took.

Letters from friends captured our hearts

with their creativity.

Taproot jumped out at me from this word laden elephant. 

And then we gathered to listen to our wise teacher's words

as Sandra began to share

her own work with us.

Her journals are exquisite.

Her reports even more so.

One last look before getting to work.

I had struggled on Day 2. Odd as we'd been working with paper - something I fall more and more in love with every day. Each exercise left me unhappy and wondering just what was wrong with me. Why couldn't I settle and find that creative pathway?

Toward the end of the day, it finally hit me - I didn't like the paper of the pages in my notebook. Too smooth and perhaps a bit too large. There was another in my bag though - smaller, more intimate with handmade pages. It would mean creating a whole new cover.

Jan Baker's wondrous work

On Day 1, or perhaps 2, Sandra had likened the classroom to taking a journey on a barge. Sometimes you want to stay on the barge and join in the activities on board or view the shoreline from there. Other times, you want to get off and explore or simply enjoy wandering alone. Either is okay to do.

So...with permission to get off the barge, I gathered indigo (from Glynnis Dolce of Shirbori Girl) pins, batting, thread, needle and departed the barge.

Settling myself in front of Jan Baker's glorious work, I took time to really look at it. Letter after stylish letter, the words and letters themselves flow together - they touch and dance along in a line that catches one up in the rhythm and has you whirling along before you realize your feet have left the ground.

The letters hint at words, at sentences, at stories that need telling yet are perhaps a bit shy about yelling out their story.

With those thoughts in mind, I set about stitching a word across the full width of my cover in a way that the letters merged just enough so that when the cover is closed, what is seen is curves and lines mingling together.

There is a word there. Can you guess it?

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Sandra Brownlee at Long Ridge Farm - Day 2

This time last week, I was waking up in Brattleboro, VT and getting ready to begin Day 2 of Sandra Brownlee's Tactile Notebooks and the Written Word workshop at Long Ridge Farm, right across the border in Westmoreland, NH.

Nestled in the mountains amid trees and pastureland, Long Ridge Farm was an idyllic location for Sandra's teachings. Our classroom was as much the outside as it was inside a very open barn.

Day 2 = paper.

Beginning with Thich Nhat Hahn's If you are a poet you will see clearly that there is a cloud floating in this sheet of paper...

we made a list of paper's qualities (above left) and the techniques applicable to it (above right).

As I passed through the doorway to go outside and noticed again the texture of the mat, emboss popped into my mind. Would it be possible?

1 piece of handmade paper + water + the sun's warmth to dry it = embossed paper.  And that was only the beginning.

We lunched al fresco each day in Nancy's backyard -

all the while marvelling at the perfectness of the weather,

the easy camaraderie of those gathered,

and enjoying the thoughtful gifts shared - a burdock ball for Sandra from Velma

and wrapped hearts for us all from Sandra.
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