Monday, April 25, 2011

sock, rock, rooster

My daughter speaks:

Sock: "Cock!"
Rock: "Cock-cock!"
Rooster: "Cock-a, cock-a!"
Cracker: "Cock-a!"

(Dog is, inexplicably, "bo!")

Thursday, April 21, 2011

engineer booties

Lots of friends have had babies recently, and they're all boys. I admit I've been way more inspired to make girlie stuff lately, so it seems like I'm partial, but it's just that I haven't gotten around to taking a picture of the super-hero cape I made for Auden (with, per his request, an "S" on the back -- which, for the record, is THE HARDEST LETTER IN THE WHOLE ALPHABET TO TOP-STITCH).

I should also admit that I've become an unwitting enforcer of gender signifiers in babies. My friend Emily, pregnant with her second, got word during one ultrasound that she'd be having a girl, and I got all squealy and excited for her because her first is a boy and of course boys are awesome but eeeeeee! Cute girl things! And I started knitting a little hat for her right away. Then subsequent ultrasounds pointed in the other direction, and as much as I wanted to, I just couldn't send a cherry red pixie cap to a baby boy. And I thought I was so progressive! So I needed a different project.

I've been meaning to tweak the pattern for booties I made here, and of course all babies need booties.

Without any commentary on gender-appropriate colors, clothes and/or career choices, behold, the Engineer Booties! For boys! In blue! (okay, that was commentary)

I had some Osh-Kosh overalls that never quite fit Auden right, but I LOVED the stripey denim so I couldn't throw them away. I managed to get two pairs of booties out of one pair of overalls.

I changed the shape of the toe piece so that it was wider overall, then added a little elastic for a snug fit.

With the pair I made for Isla, I put fusible web in the toe, but left the sides soft. With these I did the opposite, which makes way more sense, since the sides need structure but the toe needs to be flexible.

Cute cute cute.


Monday, April 18, 2011

my ego: fragile, handle with care

Last night I had a quiet fit about the effect of 10 years of transient lifestyle on my art.

All this moving around has divided up my time and my supplies and my momentum into little bits and fragments, so I'm blaming my utter lack of direction on the fact that I never know where any of that stuff is.

I never get anything done!
I never know what I'm doing!
I'll never be successful!

Commence moping, aimless shuffling, downward spiraling.

I'm also blaming my schizophrenic style-jumping on all these moves too -- just when I start to find my groove it's time to pack up and go. When I unpack my canvases I'm always like, what was I doing? How do I finish? I know, I'll just start something new and completely different!

Recently I finished up a few of the bone pieces I've been working on for the past year and a half, a duration that is excruciating, and also not a record. Do I have to sign it Robin Danely, 2009 - 2011? Gah.

But they're FINISHED (a state of being that may be purely for the saying so).

I just started working on a new commission -- which I'm determined to finish this summer, before we move again. This is great for productivity: hurry up and be creative!

I'm also working on getting a website up, a project that is waaaaay overdue (I think it was a New Year's resolution in 2005), and I'm sure I'll instantly become wildly famous as a result, so leave a comment now and you can say you knew me when.

Going through my archives for images for the site, I came across these pieces, done while we were living in Kyoto and I had nothing but time glorious time to brood and paint:

self portrait summer, oil on glass, 2005

jason, oil on glass, 2005

Yuki, oil on glass, 2005

So, okay, I'll concede that some part of moving has been good for my art. Namely, moving to Kyoto.
These paintings, on glass, you'll notice, survived the flight back to the States, and two subsequent cross-country moves. Perhaps I should see that as a testimony to the resilience of my artistic wherewithal.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

fate, providence

It's funny how so much of your life is spent in not-knowing: a part that seems so big and so long and so fraught, and then, in one instant, as soon as you know, all that time in the not-knowing suddenly becomes contained in The Past, and gains character and edifies your faith. If you're lucky.

So, after all these months in limbo (oh, and what a blessed limbo it's been) (seriously, it requires its own separate post), now we know:

Providence, Rhode Island.

The name, even! Can you believe it? It's kind of too much for me... it's like a giant cosmic "thumbs-up!"

We've spent the past few weeks wrapping our heads around this new future, with its new unknowns, and starting to map out yet another move. We get out the atlas frequently to remember exactly where, again, is this tiniest of States, and where are the beaches and the parks and the neighborhoods and the opportunities for each of us... my imagination tends toward big bold strokes -- our new house is FABULOUS and the kids are in preschool and day care and I've got TONS of time to paint! -- so I've got to figure out how to be excited without drawing up elaborate expectations.

Nevertheless: excited!

And so proud of Jason for slogging through this process of applying for jobs with persistence and patience (while I stood on the sidelines being utterly preoccupied with my own daily dramas and stresses) (also a subject for another post).

To Providence!