17 March 2016

Daily measures II

And the "Daily measures" practice continues... Above are January's (left-hand pages) & February's (center section) completed, with the first half of March's lines weaving their little stories through the third accordion booklet on the right.

The February "chapter" is entitled Settling——not in the negative sense of having to settle for less than one deserves, but rather in the way that all of January's "possibility" finally began to settle...to find some kind of shape & rhythm. Or at least as much rhythm as one experiences in the constantly evolving creative space that a studio typically is...

As were January's, the strips of paper for February came from a variety of sources: trimmings from projects, packaging, mail, extra prints, bits & pieces that turn up around the studio, etc. The choice of orange for the title & footers was inspired by its presence in all shapes & forms... I had never realized how apt it is as a color for February, but with the kilos of oranges that were welcomed into our kitchen & my February tradition of orange freesias brightening up the studio (not to mention daily tea in an orange pot & mug!), I enjoyed an extra dose of my favorite color. And I found that it's an ideal choice for keeping spirits lifted through February's gray days...

I mentioned last month that I would try indenting the "Mondays," in order to help distinguish the weeks from one another, but I forgot as I was cutting the slits. March's Mondays, however, are indented (as you will see when I post them once the month is over).

A couple of things have surprised me about this daily practice so far. One is how much time, between the preparation & conclusion phases, the whole process actually takes; and it's easy to get distracted by all the papers each day! While some of the strips are quickly chosen & trimmed to size, sometimes I use multiple layers of paper or otherwise "customize" them. It has also highlighted for me how easily my mind skips ahead with new ideas; already I am plotting ways to adapt & build upon the daily strip/line concept. But it feels more important to stay with my original plan, and fortunately I am finding great satisfaction in what is beginning to seem like a fairly substantial accumulation of "story lines."



I hope that life is good in everyone's studios, kitchens, gardens, reading chairs, & other favorite places...

14 March 2016

A little of this; a little of that

It feels like I am finally settling into the whole Instagram-ing routine. Once again, I have collected the latest images that I've shared there, beginning with the most recent above, mostly shots taken out & about in Florence. The exception is the top center image, which shows another set of cards featuring one of my prototype designs for Studio Milledisegni; these nature-inspired greens are printed on kraft cardstock (though the sunshine has made it appear brighter/less "kraft-y").

On the subject of kraft paper, which I tend to gravitate toward, it seems to have become a bit of a theme around here lately. As well as the card design test prints, it showed up in the form of a dozen lovely notebooks by Artway & in the packaging of a handful of loose leaf teas (top three images below).

The middle trio was inspired by the completely different views as I looked west, then east, while crossing Ponte Santa Trìnita one evening.

The bottom row——a few images from my last trip to NYC——I posted in honor of my recent website update/renovation. The new website has a section devoted to photography, and NYC is one of the evolving "branches." I had always meant to post some images of Manhattan here on the blog, but had a hard time with the sifting & sorting process...there are so many I'd like to share! These are perhaps some rather "quiet" selections, but they are among my favorites——as much for their patterns/palette as for the memories...


This next set of nine records February's presence of orange: all of the oranges we've been eating + some gorgeous freesias on the studio table——they seem to have become a February tradition. The middle row shows off some of the gorgeous ribbons I recently ordered from Angela Liguori's Studio Carta + a view of the Arno that seemed to mirror the copper-y shades of ribbon. The bottom row includes a few shots from a photoshoot during the latest testing of my salted caramel recipe...


The next nine:

The top center image is another variation on a Studio Milledisegni prototype I have been experimenting with, and I liked how the colors of that gorgeous foliage on the left seemed to have inspired the palette for the cards (maybe subconsciously; it's one of my favorite plants to photograph at the local rose garden). The right image shows the late afternoon light shortly before it left the southeast corner of Ponte Vecchio one blue-skied day.

In the middle row is my first issue of Uppercase magazine, enjoyed with a blood orange juice spremuta; some particularly colorful confetti during carnevale in the center; and a small homage in honor of Laura Ingalls Wilder's birthday, including the first of the paperwhite blooms.

The bottom row shows January's Daily Measures, which you may have seen in a past blog post (I'll post February's shortly), along with some of the story lines/strips that inspired the Daily Measures & another "line/strip" experiment with the weaving of seaweed at the beach a couple of summers ago.

And here is one last set of three...

I have not been happy with my results using the Derwent Graphitint pencils that I bought over a year ago, but I did enjoy making a pencil "poem" with them one day. I like, too, that the photo continues the theme of "lines" that I so enjoy exploring. It came about one day when the colors with names of things you can eat & drink leapt out at me:
Port in a Storm
 Port [in a]
I am happy to say that the rather muted pencils do create a lovely effect on the kraft paper pages of my new notebooks! Maybe this is the way to go....

The center photo shows a late afternoon view from Ponte Vecchio, with the Uffizi and its reflection on the left——I love the birds flying off into the distance. Where to, I wonder?

On the lower right is a tea box that my daughter put together for a friend's birthday...it was fun to help her outfit it and package up the contents with bits & pieces from around the studio. I love how she even "stained" the box with some leftover tea/coffee/gouache that I'd used to paint some journal pages. Re-recycling!


I will continue to gather my photos from Instagram here at intervals; though they cover only a small part of what makes up my days, I always enjoy reconsidering these snippets... In the meanwhile, please let me know if you have an Instagram account; I would love to see how it figures into your life!

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