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Cat Fun

July 17, 2019

Me Me gnome hat_g everett studio

Me Me kitty can be a good sport, sometimes. Today she allowed a few fashion snaps of the felted cat hair hat created from just two days of combing. She’s not impressed!

At 16, the queen begrudgingly shares the house with 2 rambunctious young calicoes, 2 dogs, one screaming cockatoo, and her house slaves. She insists on claiming the art studio as her space whether I’m there or not. Her preferred water dish is my water container for brushes.

After seeing the post on Bored Panda about a Japanese artist who makes felted hats out of cat hair, I just had to try it (especially since I’ve jumped into the world of fiber/felting/spinning). The hat creation started with needle felting then shifted to wet felting. After drying overnight, I added more hair with needles. Me Me’s gnome hat will continue to grow as the days continue. As for spinning cat hair, I’ll pass on that one. I did watch Tiny Fibre Studio spin her cat hair into yarn. Click here for the domestic pet spinning video.  I love her videos!

Anyway, it’s nice to have something to chuckle about in the world these days…..

Eventually I’ll be posting images of the completed drawing and move onto the next book.

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Sheep to Yarn Experiment

June 6, 2019

A few years ago (2016) I pondered and acted upon the question “how does one process wool and create yarn?” Thanks to several friends and lots of You Tube searches I set forth on the wool/yarn learning pathway. It’s taken several years and countless hours working with the Physical Therapist (not easy for my spine/back muscles) to reach the spinning stage. A month ago I took a local beginning spinning class which was essential since I couldn’t figure out what was wrong with a borrowed wheel.  The process finally is creating yarn! Here are a few highlights from the journey thus far:

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Waiting for shearing (Ewes, not the lambs)

Step 1: Have friends with sheep! Especially friends who grow sheep for meat and the wool  can ends up composting or on Craigs List. The sheep require a yearly shearing in spring depending on when the lambs are born. This breed is not specifically designed for great wool, but I’ve learned it’s not a bad place to start.

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Unwashed Fleece

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Fleece bath time in Dawn dish soap

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Unwashed (left)  vs. Washed (right)

Step 2: Washing! I decided to use the shop sink located in the garage for processing. It took several days to clean a full fleece due to muscle/body problems. This became a summertime activity to assure the wool would fully dry. I also flooded the garage several times. It’s good to remember to turn off the taps before walking away.

Once washed it was placed outside on the drying rack for a few days.

Step 3: Just go for it! I learned to create general tools to make the process go smoothly. No drying rack? Make it from scrap lumber and hardware cloth. No Niddy Noddy?(one of those things to wind completed yarn off the bobbin and then tie and twist into a completed hank/skein) Again, use scraps and make it myself. Yes, it takes time but is less expensive than purchasing online. Thank goodness for all the DIY videos online!. 

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Bag of cleaned wool

Step 4: Carding- It takes time and creates mess. Situate yourself with a drop cloth below your feet (or outside where it doesn’t matter). Don’t attempt this at a friends house of place of business. I’m currently thinking about renting or borrowing a drum carder to make life easier on my hands. I enjoy the hand carding paddles but it takes time. This entire process is about time! A big thank you to my mother-in-law for the Christmas gift. It went towards felting and yarn tool purchases.

Step 5: Spinning! I was lucky to have a friend who graciously brought her mother’s wheel to Oregon from Louisiana for a try. This same friend also alerted me to the fact a wheel was for sale at a used shop. I love this friend dearly! So, now I have two wheels sitting in my small space: one is set up for plying, the other for spinning. Both have their uses and I’m thrilled to bits. For those interested in types of wheels: borrowed wheel is an Ashford, the purchased one is a Haldane Orkney style.

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Haldane Orkney Style Spinning Wheel

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Niddy Noddy from scrap wood

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The ever helpful MeMe cat. 

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First 2-ply skein

Eventually I’ll get around to knitting, but that’s on the back burner for now. I picked up 6 more fleece from the same friends and have plenty to tackle this summer. Plus I’m looking into dying yarn!

Did I mention that I’m also needle felting creatures too?

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Jacob Sheep creations

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Happy Hound  (7″x 4″x 2″) 2019

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Border Collie ( 6″x 5″x 1.75″) 2019

So many options for exploration with wool! 

I’ll be posting images of the book project soon. Next week I will be out of town attending a 4 day workshop at Sitka Center for Art and Ecology. Photos to come!

A little more work

April 16, 2019
Boston Terrier, gale everett studio 2019

Work in progress, Boston Terrier, graphite on 18″x 24″, Gale Everett Studio 2019

I’m finally sitting back down in the studio to work on the dog drawing. It’s definitely a work in progress. Ears, eyes, nose, and mouth zone keep shifting as more information gets laid down.

Life has been a jumble of so many things that I’ve had a hard time sorting out daily tasks. Arthritis flair-ups have been happening much to my disapproval (Partly due to food consumption, partly stress, always equals horrible gut and body pain). I’m just glad to be sequestering myself in the art room again!

Tomorrow looks promising for a little more drawing time!

Boston Shift

April 6, 2019

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I’m not sure where I’m heading, but I needed to start a larger drawing. I’ve spent loads of time researching ideas and keep coming back to the desire of drawing animals on a bit larger scale. This isn’t super large (paper dimensions: 45 mm x 61 mm), but it might get my energy flowing. The subject matter is Sadie, a Boston Terrier owned by a friend. She doesn’t know that I”m working on the image. Maybe I’ll eventually have something to share with them.  My goal is to start loosening up with animal portraits. Subjects are all around me at home and in nosework class.

Stepping back in time, I had wanted to create big charcoal drawings while at university. I was actually lined up to join a collective studio space of painters, but things shifted and I moved away from drawing. However, way back in the deep recesses of my brain I’ve been holding onto the idea even if I didn’t realize it! Botanical images have moved aside to welcome birds and mammals. This feeling is real and I need to grasp it!

Oh, famous last words… we shall see what next week brings forward!

🙂

 

Warmth and sunshine

March 18, 2019

Here we are on March 17, 2019 and it truly feels like spring! Topping out at almost 70, we spent the day house cleaning and clearing brush in the backyard. I finished Anna’s book page yesterday and packed it up today for Cathe. So overdue, but I’m happy with what’s being sent forward (which is what I really want). Colors became crazy, but seemed to work well with the image. I think my brain needed this crazy outlet for moving forward in life. Thinking back on what’s happened over the past 10 months, I’ve been amazed at how things are finally progressing forward. Slowly, overdue items are getting check off the mental list. Packages sent to my nephew. Print exchanges entered at the last moment. Drawings completed.

One thing I haven’t mentioned much has been the kittens. They turn 1 year on Friday!

Fiona

Pippin

These two crazy girls have become such a strong part of the household. Both Moby and Hazel adore both girls, but MeMe still hasn’t accepted the pair. The household remains divided on the cat realm. Maybe we’ll have a breakthrough with the old lady soon.

Maggie currently visiting until early April. Her mom is taking a much needed vacation to Costa Rica. I actually have plans for travel to Kenya and Tanzania in September/October 2019. Since I’m at the last of my 40’s, I’ve chosen to make a grand safari adventure before the clock shifts into the 50’s. I have chosen to join a group I know and a cause I’ve supported in the past (Makindu ).

A great week ahead!

2019 Art Acquisition Grant

February 19, 2019

 

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Today, the official announcement went up on the Oregon Arts Commission website listing the 2019 Art Acquisition Grants and my name is on the list.  The City of Halsey were not able to raise enough funds to cover the cost of “From the Land”. They applied for a small grant to fund the remainder and received it! Or I should say we both received it!

A big thanks to the city employees who went the extra mile to pull everything together. It’s kind of shocking to see my name on the website, all official.

To view the list please click the Oregon Arts Commission Link HERE.

Bug taking shape

February 9, 2019

Holes and crazy bugs are taking shape on the iris stalks. Progress is in super slow mode.

The colors have become a tad wild for my normal sense of life, but it works. Fingers crossed for another chance tomorrow afternoon for additional work.

Off to cook dinner!

Drawing: colored pencil, watercolor, micron pen and pencil.