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8 Years A Tree

In 2006 when I came up with the answer to a question of what to do with all the paper piling up in my apartment I had no idea it would turn into an eight year  (and counting)  project. None. But it has and my Tree is at a crossroads, or rather a cross-country adventure. You see my Tree has been removed from its outdoor home. The one it has been in/on for the last five years. Just recently it had been lifted off the ground, taken in-doors to dry and packaged carefully to make its journey and enter into the next stage of its life.

So until my Tree comes back to me I have many photos for you to view. See what wood will do when sitting outside underneath cement after a polar vortex and several years of turbulent northeastern weather.

Bark before lifted Ground after cement stump lifted Bottom of cement stump Ground underneath cement stump side of cement stump Top of cement stump Underneath Tree bark Tree Bark Cement stump Aerial view of what is left of bark Time to dry Underneath the bark Flatness of the Tree

UPDATE!

Check out the video that accompanies the above photos. Taken the same day.

 

#Twitterartexhibit & birds

Today is my first non-blogathon post. So I am writing what I want and taking on all subjects at once!

First, Thursday was the first day of spring and the first day of Twitter Art Exhibit: Orlando Benefiting The Center for Contemporary Dance, Special Needs Classes. Here is the info if you are in Florida.

WHEN: Show runs March 20 – April 11, 2014 LOCATION: CityArts Factory, Magic Gallery | Orlando, Florida, USA

Second, I have had a lot of inspiring things happen to me lately. I received an invite to assist with teaching a children’s sewing bag camp (it is 3 or 4 days)! Hurray a paid gig with the potential to run other workshops. They said I could pitch some ideas, one they did love and see if they could get it to fill. So working on that. Also got accepted to run some workshops for barter. Yay to bartering! And then today I went to a workshop for Yarn Bombing Los Angeles and was asked if I would like a tree. Who would like a tree? To yarn bomb. Even though I currently do not crochet or knit. I sew. I am going to sew some sweaters together (they gave me sweaters and yarn) and cover a giant palm tree. The one I got is tree #1, right in front of the Manhattan Beach Creative Arts Center (the location for the May show)! Front and center. I may also contribute some birds to their forest exhibit. Same month and location. I’ll share more info once I have it.

And I leave you with a bird I sewed this morning. I do not just patch my clothing, unless it is a sock.

Bird Patch by Amy Bauer Designs

Bird Patch by Amy Bauer Designs

Day 15 – Reflection

Take a moment to take inventory of the results of continuous blogging about your art and networking with other artists through their blogs.

  • What have you learned about yourself?
  • What connections have you made with other artists?
  • Did you find a rhythm and style to express yourself about your art through blogging?
  • Did you discover anything new about your relationship to your art?
  • Do you have any better understanding of the role you play as an artist in your community?
  • Is blogging a worthwhile activity?
  • What do you need to keep you blogging regularly?

Hmmm for the last prompt I feel like this is a large/yet easy in a not so easy looking immediately kind of way.

I learned that I am not meant to blog every day (well not at this point). That the art scene in Atlanta is vibrant. That I would love to visit C4 Atlanta one day. My blogging style sways gently like a calm wave. I’ve learned that my role as an artist in this community is welcomed, wanted, and happily accepted. With my art and blog I have to just keep putting myself out there. You never know when an opportunity is rolling past. For instance a few days ago I entered a store that would be a fabulous place for me to teach classes. I chatted with an associate for a bit and that night I emailed the owner. This morning I received a reply from there to come meet with them this week! I am so excited and nervous and excited. None of this would have happened if I hadn’t been given support by my fiance similar to C4 Atlanta supporting artists blogging.

Will I keep blogging regularly? Not every day, but more often. Even if it is just an image of my work. Like this one. Stage two of my public art preparation.

Prepping the trees.

Prepping the trees.

Photo Day

Like last Friday, today is PHOTO FRIDAY. Okay, I am one day behind, but that isn’t bad.

Give yourself permission on PHOTO FRIDAY  to write nothing or something. It is up to you! Part of blogging every day is finding ways to make it sustainable. Having one day or more out of every week that requires only photos can provide a much needed break from using words.

John Lewis mural in Downtown, Atlanta
John Lewis mural in Downtown, Atlanta

Use 5 to 7 photographs (fewer or more if you want) to show and tell about yourself as an “Artist in Your City.” When you travel outside your workspace, how does the artist in your get expressed?

  • Where do you journey in your community as an artist?

  • Where are you exhibiting, performing, or selling your work?

  • How do you appear (attire, attitude, and ambition)?

  • Are you working at another job to support your art making?

  • What places do you frequent most often in your community? Why?

  • Do you support other artists at their events?

  • Who is in your community that you want to connect with?

  • Who cultivates the artist in you?

  • Where do you go to relax and regenerate your creative spirit?

___

Many of my adventures are caught on camera phone by my fiance Richard Hecht. This week was no exception. Here is a link to his Tumblr via Twitter.

Photoset: Point Mugu State Park Thursday, March 13 visit Springs Fire aftermath Mountains, Rock, lizard,… http://t.co/nNxl2lIXOj

Contemplating the relationship between you the artist and your communities.

They City, 1919. Fernand Léger
They City, 1919. Fernand Léger

Think about your relationship as an artist or artistic entrepreneur to your neighborhood, city, and region. Then respond to these two questions:
Question 1 (Artists Contributions):

  • What does your creative work contribute to your communities?
  • In general, what do the arts do for a city?
  • What do you do for your city or community?
  • What SHOULD you do, if anything, that you don’t already do?

Questions 2 (Cities Contributions):

  • How should communities develop and support their artists?
  • What is your city or community doing, if anything, to help you develop and support you as a creative?
  • What areas are creative communities nurtured in your area? Coffee shops? Galleries? Museums? Government spaces? Nonprofit spaces? Corporate spaces? Etc…

Question 1:

Since I am new to my city, Los Angeles, I believe my artistic contribution may be small (like my artwork) but etching out my own tunnels while stumbling across paths created decades ago. In less than 4 months I have had two art shows in my new home town. What I should do and what I have been working towards is contributing by way of street art (which is happily widely accepted here) and activism. Two things I have researched a lot and am preparing to become involved in the near future.

Question 2:

Many things have changed even since I first began making art as more than a hobby. It wasn’t as easy to find or even join an arts collective. One that doesn’t cost money to join I mean. Happily I discovered one several years ago and my enthusiasm made the organizer ask me to become an assistant organizer, which I was honored too and still am. But my activities with that group are now limited by distance. Two years ago I joined another one, one that required a fee. I was once again happy with the new doors it opened and still wish I had joined earlier, but it was a bit limited. One yearly meeting and collective show. Once moving west I switched chapters and cannot believe the change. Multiple meetings (one chapter of the group has monthly ones!) and I am already in a member show! The activity out here is astounding. Is it because people are outside everyday? No polar vortex here. I do not know if that is the reason, but it sure helps.

The community here is so accepting and helpful to artists there are numerous opportunities and possibilities it is impossible to do them all! But that is a good thing, because if you miss out on something it is most likely going to happen again next month only with a slight variation. That and there are a hundred other things to do. Today for instance I attended a monthly meeting for a public art group for the first time. They want me to come to their next workshops! Hopefully I am able too, but if not I already know there will be more opportunities in the near future. And that is how I wish every community was in regards to supporting and welcoming artists.

Day 12 – Rant!

Today’s prompt:

As an artist or creative entrepreneur, explore your relationship to money in a rant.
What do you want to proclaim about your art and its financial role in your life?

Aspects of money to consider:

  • Pricing and selling your art
  • Purchasing tools, supplies, and space for your art making
  • Paying for promoting your art
  • Negotiating financial matters involving your work
  • Supporting yourself from your art

What is a rant?
In case you didn’t already know, a rant is some or all of the following:

  • An impassioned form of expression
  • Statements of strong (primarily negative) feelings
  • Complaints
  • A litany of disparaging remarks
  • A list of short direct sentences
  • Exaggerations often creating humorous or comic results
  • energized stirred up exuberance

Have fun! Get stirred up! Find energy inside what may be the ambiguous feelings you have about the relationship between your art and money! Get it all the ick out!

An example rant from How the Grinch Stole Christmas by Dr. Zeuss:

You’re a foul one, Mr. Grinch,
You’re a nasty wasty skunk,
Your heart is full of unwashed socks, your soul is full of gunk, Mr. Grinch.
The three words that best describe you are as follows, and I quote,
“Stink, stank, stunk”!

EXTRAS FOR YOUR CONSIDERATION: Once you’ve written your rant, record yourself reading it and post on your blog! Reflect on what you discovered about yourself in relation to money as you ranted. Will you adjust any of your art-financial behaviors?

Pachelbel Rant
Watch the Video

My response is simple. Our dependency on money sucks. Our relationship to money sucks. Our need to feed our creativity….doesn’t suck. I love creating. Making art, clothes, fun silly doodles, and darning socks. I love it all. But it doesn’t bring in money to pay all those bills that keep creeping into my inbox and mailbox and head in the wee early morning hours when I should still be asleep! If the sun hasn’t risen yet, then I do not want to either! unless. Unless it is for money. Money to pay my bills. Money to buy more supplies to create more art. To have more fun. To be happy.

Day 11 – Tools

Today’s prompt:

Today, we want to ask you to name some of the tools, resources, or connections that you need to conquer your creative dreams.

  • What knowledge gaps do you have?
  • What classes are you dying to take? Creative, professional, technical, etc…
  • If you could do it all over again, what would you do differently – or in a different order?
  • What resources do you feel are essential to the growth of your creative or entrepreneurial practice?
  • If you had a super power, what would it be?
  • If you could work with anyone, who would it be?

Harken back to the beginning of this blogathon, and respond to this prompt in any way you would like and that gets your creative juices flowing. If just plain old writing doesn’t excite you, then write a poem, a rant, or a song. Sing or perform your answer and post the video. Take a photo, draw or paint an image. Engage with us as you think through the different tools, resources, or people you would most want to break down any barriers you currently feel!

We all have knowledge gaps. Mine may be traditional art and art history. I have a degree in Fine Arts, but it wasn’t from an art school and I was able to transfer in more than 1/2 of my degree. Hence I got to skip A LOT of classes. Good (and down right exciting) at the time. In the long run.. I am not sure yet. I am mostly a self-taught artist because of this and it hasn’t hindered my successes. Could I have gotten more? Nah I don’t think so. Especially since one can learn about anything via YouTube.

Right now I am not dying to take any classes. I am dying to teach some. Although I am a true life-long learner and will take some more classes/workshops currently my focus is on expanding my artistic resources and income.

If I could do it all over again I would have gone straight away to art school. In fact starting in middle school or younger I would have found a way to start taking classes or joined an organization or something.

The internet particular social media are essential resources for my growth. They allow me to learn and share.

A super power, hmmm it would definitely be something to do with sewing. The ability to sew lightning fast even by hand. I could use the power for good and to throw tents around anyone who is after me if I ever found myself in a chase sequence. Which would happen a lot I presume.

Working with anyone? When I was younger I could name people who I would want to spend the day with, just hanging out. Then there was a phase when I wanted a mentor. Then to be a mentor. But right now, today I am going to answer this question thinking of myself and making others (secretly) happy with street art. There are a group of people in New Zealand. Where leaving street art for others to find seems to be common place. I would love to learn from them. Not necessarily how to do it, that part is easy. How they started, continue, and possible collaborations. I am a world away, but just following them online is encouraging and inspiring.

Below are two beginning samples for my street art idea. They are going to be inside of the piece. And they are what I need to create right now.

Cardboard trees.

Cardboard trees.

Flip-side of cardboard trees

Flip-side of cardboard trees

 

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