Love this flower!

Hardy hibiscus was a pleasant surprise for me a few years ago. I had no idea that this beautiful flower could withstand Michigan winters, but mine is flourishing. Of course, any plant that thrives on neglect does well at my house! These full blossoms are past their prime, but that adds to the charm for me.

Every year I take a few photos of the beauty I enjoy, fully intending to make an art quilt from them. I have yet to do that!

There is a beautiful orange colored hibiscus at my mother’s house that I would love to have here.

However, that is in Florida and those plants really would not survive that Michigan deep freeze!

The bug-eaten leaves—the potential of the buds and the flowering as it’s opening–inspiration for sure.

But it’s inspiration that stays only in my mind, not committed to fabric. Yet. It could happen. Maybe.

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AQS Daytona

My visit to AQS Daytona was very nice today. I love looking at all the quilts, both traditional and modern. Nice exhibits by SAQA and another with Japanese quilts. I don’t attempt to take pictures of everything–only quilts that I really like. I actually didn’t even take any pictures of the ribbon winners! And they are not super photos, just quick snapshots, but if you were not able to get there you will at least see some of the quilts that don’t make the magazine articles about the winners!

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It was very nice for a first time event in Daytona. The venue is great, the parking was easy and it seemed very well attended. Perhaps not as many vendors as some of the more established shows, but a good number and good variety. The food court options were a bit sparse, but the food I had was quite delicious.

Any day spent with quilt stuff is a good day, so I am a very happy camper!

Close to finished!

There is nothing more boring than quilting a grid. And whose fault is it that I was stuck sewing straight line after straight line after straight line? Well, my own fault, of course!

Cyano 17

But that’s all I wanted for the background of this piece. And then I covered it up!

Cyano 19

This is almost done. There are a couple of little text details I want to add, but it’s a simple process and a simple design seemed appropriate.

However, here’s a word of caution for you. DO NOT make a mistake on something that is dark colored and fused to a heavy stabilizer. Look at the arrows to see where I changed my mind about the quilting and took it out. Little white dots, but I used the piece anyway. I convinced myself that the dots added texture!

Cyano 18

This is going to be part of a larger project, curated by Karen Musgrave. Can’t wait until we have shows to announce!

I disappoint myself…

I worked very hard in the studio today to finish up the article I’m reworking. Process photos, of course, which are a royal pain, but absolutely necessary. When I sat down to finish my editing and add my photos, I could only find half the pictures. The ones from the beginning, which I took last week, have totally vanished. I searched in every nook and cranny and under every rock in my computer, to no avail. I think I deleted them from my camera before I downloaded them. I felt so stupid.

But I can place the blame on this delightful distraction.

AJ cameraman

When grandson AJ saw my tripod, he just had to be AJ Cameraman for the day. He hauled it around the house all day, “filming” things just like he has seen TV cameramen filming when he was at hockey games. He had a great time and I smiled for the camera for hours!

However, I believe that when I was deleting his pictures, I deleted mine, thinking they were already on the computer. Sigh!

Luckily, in this case I have enough fabric to duplicate my efforts–and my photos.

Some days the hamster wheel just spins around and you hop on and off as the moments pass by!

Pictures? What pictures?

I am so totally hopeless when it comes to taking pictures of my activities! We started our day Saturday at the John C. Campbell Folk School Festival. The school is set among beautiful rolling hills in a mountain valley. A jewel of a setting.

We thought we were getting there early, right when it was starting at 10 AM. HA! I’ve never seen so much traffic on those winding mountain roads, but it didn’t take very long for the festival pros to get us into their hilly parking areas. Picture? Uh, no…

The vendor booths were set up all along the paths through the woods. Felt like I imagine a Middle Ages Faire would be, with all the little tents and demos of things like wood carving and blacksmithing. The school’s workshops and studios were open with demos going on and there was music on a couple of stages. There were pony rides and live alpacas and spinning and weaving…it was just a great festival, dedicated to the art of the handcrafter. Picture? Uh, no…

We were able to purchase some things like hand forged marshmallow roasting forks and beautifully dyed fleece and roving. Beautiful, beautiful items throughout the festival, in a beautiful setting. Pictures? Uh, no…!!!

But I can highly recommend attending this festival if you can be anywhere in the area on the first weekend of October.

And check out all the classes taught at this school…wonderful! I’m hoping to be one of the instructors in 2014, too. I’ll keep you informed if that becomes a reality–I’ll probably shout it from the rooftops. In the meantime, I’ll try to develop better picture habits!

Sometimes….I just don’t know!

I think I might forget my head if it wasn’t attached! Went to the Capitol Fireworks show last night without my camera. Walking past all kinds of architectural details that I would like to capture for inspiration. Great view of Capitol building, with hubby, which would make a great picture for here…not to be.

I took a couple of photos with my phone, but I have a dumb phone and don’t pay for an email plan or a data plan, so they will stay on my phone.

And after I just posted about wanting to be more camera conscious…boy, do I feel dimwitted! See why I worry about Alzheimer’s?

Oh, well–the fireworks were lovely, the heat wasn’t unbearable, and we had fun!

Time and Goals

Never enough time and goals that are weakly defined…a combination that leads to procrastination, frantic last-minutes and long hours of non-productivity. I don’t run out of ideas. I just get lazy and run out of ambition. And then I feel like a real slacker…it’s not a pretty cycle.

Today is a not-enough-time day. My ideas are running full force, my work ethic is high, and I can’t get it done quickly enough. I must document, document, document though and the constant picture taking interrupts the work flow. My mind set needs to change to incorporate the picture taking as part of the working process. It’s very strange to me and still feels like so much of an intrusion.

However, even my weakest goals require pictures! I’m learning more about my camera features than I even knew it had. Lighting adjustments are my biggest discovery and the biggest help to my picture quality. I still have so very much to learn, but I have learned that I am not in love with photography. It will never be more than a tool to me, not a new hobby. I greatly admire those who can seemingly effortlessly compose and take beautiful photos. My son-in-law is one of those people and I will gratefully accept his advice whenever I can get it!

Photo by Jeff King

For now, I will muddle along trying to make sure that I snap that shutter and have the photos I need when my goal keeping requires them. Positive thoughts–learning new techniques, changing old habits–it all keeps my mind sharp and I am never, ever bored!