Friday, September 18, 2009

IF- "Infinite"

A "Infinite" amount of Sunflowers

One of the many challenges trying to create "realistic" illustrations out of fabric collage is how do you illustrate something like an "infinite" gathering of say sunflowers, or autumn leaves, or people in a crowd, with out spending an "infinite" amount of time doing it, stitching takes a whole lot more time than whisking around a paint brush in a impressionistic sort of way. I guess that is the challenge I am trying to achieve- an "impressionistic" illusions of "infinite sunflowers." How did I do?
The dryland farmers along Hwy 491 going towards Dovecreek in Southwest Colorado, are now growing infinite fields of sunflowers in the red dirt, instead of beans, where spaced every ten miles or so are tiny towns, with a post office and the remains of bean elevator with names like Yellow Jacket, Cahone and Pleasant View.
The model is my friend, Wendy- who had an "infinite" amount of patience- letting me photograph her, not on the roads out near Yellow Jacket, but in her sun room, on one of those bike stands that let you pedal.

I am thrilled in that- Creative Quarterly, a art and design journal, did pick Riding Yellow Jacket as a runner up in their magazine #17 competition- it wont be in the magazine but will be on their website in December- will let you know!

For another Tidbit on "Infinite" read below

I'm sure there are an "infinite" amount of reason why the Durango E.M.T.'s were helping this guy save his bike from a parking meter, the most likely would be " hey man, I got the race tomorrow and lost my key to my titanium bike lock, can you give me a hand." And knowing Durango, Colorado and its love of all things biking- that would be a reasonable request. No Joke was walking down Main Street and had to take a double take-

Apparently there is not an "infinite" amount of bikes you can attach to one parking meter with a standard cable bike lock- five or is it six is all- and you have to stack them just right- took this through the Starbucks window-

There is a huge single speed mountain bike race happening there this weekend- from one end of main street to the other there was not a pole, post, meter that did not have a bike attached to it- don't know how busy the EMT are going to be with bike- with people they might have their handful-hopefully not- this race is insane- check out the Wikipedia right up on it -Single Speed World Championship - the winner on the spot gets not a jersey but a tattoo- whether he wants one or not- don't want one, don't win!

This year in Durango something like 2,500 people are expected to race- that is through the grapevine- Wendy's husband, Matt is racing- Good Luck!!

Friday, September 11, 2009

IF- "Welcome"

I alway feel so "welcomed", when I pull through my favorite coffee shop, The Silver Bean, housed in an airstream trailer at the edge of Cortez Colorado, complete with pink falmingos and red and white umberllas.
It was right on my way to drive the forty five minutes down McElmo canyon to teach art to Navajo and rural ranch kids at Battle Rock Charter School. Would always get a big mug of English Breakfast tea ( the title of the piece is "Stopping for Coffee", sound better and more universal than "stopping for tea",) and one of their great bean and rice burritos.
Unfortunately after six years teaching down there with no complainants, the school decided to drop the Art Program, thinking the regular teachers could just do an occasional craft project- I'll rant later of the importance of Art in schools and that it is Not just a filler class, not in the mood right now.
I think it was kind of like when a new Dynasty came into the ancient world and they needed to kill off all remnants of the old Dynasty- I guess the new parents board and new teachers want to shape their own program.
Though it would of been nice if someone had bothered to tell me- I had to call around in August to find out through the grapevine. Guess the decision was made in the spring when I was running around putting together a gallery show of the kids work at the local Art Center and putting on two end of the year musicals with homemade props and costumes.
Boy am I gonna miss those kids!!
I guess the above is more of being "UNWELCOMED"---- but! National Public Radio, did WELCOME me to submit a proposal to illustrate what NPR means to me for their 2010 Calendar, and the scene I described above, going to get coffee, well, tea at the Silver Bean, listening to NPR as I drive, or drove, down to Battlerock is in their 2010 calendar, along with a quote, bio and pic of me, which was taken by my photography inspired eleven year old who can claim NPR as one of her first photo credits!
I just wish someone had informed me of the schools intentions, which I cleared the whole NPR thing with in the spring, so the description could of been in the past tense!
To read more about it, see Cortez Journal Article

Thursday, September 10, 2009

From the Movies

Headed to Moab Utah this Labor Day and headed up to Arches National Park to show the kiddos where the opening scenes of "Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade" was filmed. The Boy Scouts as they made their way along, they go past "The Three Gossips", past " The Courthouse" and stop to climb and find the "Cross of Cortez" being looted in a cave in the side of "The Windows". BTW, there is no cave in the "Windows" and if young Indie, whose real name was junior because the dogs name was Indiana, was up at Arches, that must mean that Indiana Jone's hometown would be Moab, Utah, that is pretty cool. What is not cool is "looting" is still a major problem on and near the "Colorado Plateau" second only to the valleys of Eygpt in archeology density, if that is a word.
( Durango Herald Article)People are still reeling from a multi year and agency sting operation with informants still to be revealed that ended in the arrest of twenty five people in Durango, Colorado, Monticello Utah, and Santa Fe New Mexico, the recovery of hundreds of artifacts looted from sites and sadly two suicides by two of those arrested.
Like Eygpt, This land also has its curse, or so the old Utes and Navajos say, that those who disturb the dead will go insane. I have come to think such curses have some merit, there is a diary of the doctor that came with the army when they erected Fort Lewis, between Durango Colorado and the edge of New Mexico- his wife entertained herself pot hunting, often breaking the skeleton to get at the pots below.
But then the doctor writes of losing his baby son and burying him on a hill above their homestead, to come back home and find his wife guarding the grave with a rifle, in fear of the coyotes coming and digging up her baby- he had to take his wife and the body of his son back East, she would not leave the area with out the little coffin.