morgaina: (Exeter jug)
In general things are going very well. I see Deva & family almost daily, to the point where I am longing for more Art time. My son is getting a drawing done daily and even some writing, not sure how he is doing that, Wee Beatrice is an extremely active child. Today they have to leave the AirBnB, they only are able to stay for a month before zoning comes into the picture. So they are moving in with me for the rest of their time before they return to China.

But their and my, big, big news is that they are buying a house in Moscow with the plan of living here every summer!!! Not only that but they are buying a duplex and I am going to rent that and move in sometime next year. They plan to rent their part to a student for the school year and I will be the apartment manager.

I can't believe it and don't know what to think of first. I have a love-hate relationship with my place here. I can't handle all this land and a house that is falling down around my ears, but it's my home. I raised my babies here, I planted every non-willow or cottonwood tree on the place and they are now majestic. I fought for my kids and I to stay when my ex husband tried to sell it out from under us without my knowledge. Amby can run free like a speedy nut job. I have the best pottery studio in the world here and I can do pit firings with no one caring about the billowing smoke. I have over 5 fruit trees that are so heavy with fruit they are bent over. But carrying wood, wood pellets, shoveling snow, having snow plowed, being cold all winter and as I said, the house degrading every season, I know I can't safely stay.

I am also going to have to get rid of 2/3 to 3/4 of my stuff too. Its a not large apartment. There is room for a small studio, but when I started doing pottery eons ago, I always worked in an extra bedroom. So that will be a bit of a challenge, but not much. Its the stuff stuff that concerns.


Jun. 21st, 2016 07:02 pm
morgaina: (Exeter jug)
Deva, Jennifer and Wee Beatrice are in town for a lot of the Summer. They are staying at an AirBnB in town. Part of me wishes they were staying with me, but my house is crappy and they can bicycle almost anywhere from their excellent location. In my dreams they would be living there permanently.

It has been very helpful having Jenny here to ask details about my residency, and she seems perfectly happy to discuss even small things. 9‘IimMIimIi

I haven't been feeling particularly good, my knees hurt. I went to an acupuncturist and even after a serIes of treatments I didn't feel better, although my energy level is a little improved. So next it will be a visit to the physician. I have always been such a healthy, strong person that this is getting to me.


May. 6th, 2016 08:06 am
morgaina: (rejoice)
Life is so busy. I can’t believe it. I am retired, I have no responsibilities, how can I be behind and under water? Politics are making me nervous, that doesn't help.

The (modern) Renaissance Fair really took it out of me. Physically, otherwise I had a wonderful time. But carrying and toting was brutal. A smart person would do thing to change. So the plan is to bring different, fewer, lighter work. But the booth and set-up is really the culprit. I considered, then rejected, using several beach umbrellas rather than a pop-up. Don't think umbrellas would protect against the rain downpours we have so often. I have given up trying to arrange help, people I’ve contacted often forget or something more Important (to them) comes up.

Life is good though. May is such a gift. Farmers Market starts soon. ALL MY KIDS are planning on coming home this Summer!!!! I haven't seen all of them together since 2013. True, that when they all get together they get extremely annoyed at Gavin, but I don't and that’s what counts, right?


Apr. 14th, 2016 02:43 pm
morgaina: (jumping elephant)
My trip to China has been confirmed.
End of October beginning of November.
Not only that, but I am being paid $1000. a week for teaching there.
PLUS The school is paying for my plane ticket.

Daedin is taking a much needed nap and I am attempting to refrain from waking her to tell her.
morgaina: (snow)
I am downright curmudgeonly about the weather. Snow every day this week so far, not much, but enough to bring the grump out. Things do change rapidly though, yesterday snow in the morning and a beautiful, beautiful smidgen of sun by the late afternoon. Friends and I are worried about our fruit trees coming into bloom, and then attacked and decimated by Old Man Winter.

This is probably happening all over the United States, a friend of mine is about to lose her job. She is an ESL teacher at WSU and they are cutting their faculty in half at the end of the semester. Foreign students are going back home at the end of the semester and few new enrollments. The students and, it is supposed, their families are afraid because of the hate rhetoric in current politics. This just hurts y heart. We are better than this.

What I am looking forward to: 1st, of course China. It is making me sort of crazy that there aren't regular updates about progress and plans.
2nd. Going over to Daedin’s, see #1
3rd. Culinary Symposium.
4th Crown
I might go visit Celadon in Los Angeles this Summer. Hope that will happen and that I can afford it. Gavin is having a show in September, a much shorter drive to see him, so I definitely plan to see his show.

What I am working on Pottery of course, I go out to the studio about every day, I don't necessarily accomplish much, but at least something. I am also drawing for the Sketchbook Project which I am enjoying. I have some plein air sketches I would like to do, but not unless the weather improves a ton!
morgaina: (pit firing)
Weather: Wind, cold, snow, rain, repeat ad nauseum.
Amby: getting older and quieter, the only time he really misbehaves now is when someone comes to the house, then he goes ape shit. He was climbing both the walls and my sister when she stopped by yesterday. But then she does always refer to him as ”the bad dog”. I’m cutting her some slack though as the meaning has gone out of her life now that Downton Abbey is over. I’m going to take her ”Cranford” DVDs, which she will like, but they wont fill the hole left.

SCA: Local group is doing well, more people are stepping up. This is happy.
Regional I have been A&S regional reporting deputy for probably too long. It has always been like pulling teeth to get people to report. And occasionally, like this quarter, people actually get mad at me when I write them back and say they have to include their membership information, or ask them to send their report in a different application that I can open. This floors me, but I know its about something else and this/I was an easy target. Hum, perhaps I should send them one of my unqualified, but free, psychoanalysis.
And Kingdom I have inadvertently got caught up in some stuff in which I very honestly had no personal agenda. I am feeling quite centered though, somewhere between disappointed and amused.

pottery: Still glowing in the light of a spiffy cleaned studio. getting a tiny bit done. Too much time spent admiring how clean things are. A couple of local shows coming up. I do wish people who come to the shows would actually BUY something occasionally.

Other art: Haven't actually started my entry for ”The Sketchbook Project”, although my sketchbook has arrived and, after much deliberation I finally decided on which theme ”Faithful Friends”. Not the sexiest of titles offered, but I have the most ideas for it.
I taught an adult brush and ink class at the Artisans Barn yesterday. It was very rewarding, people took to It were appreciative, and enthusiastic.
morgaina: (Exeter jug)
Weather: so much of my day to day existence right now revolves around the weather and its consequences. We get snow or rain most days, just a little of both, but it adds up. It's a mess outside and an ice rink path to the studio. I will be so happy to see the end of this. On the good side it seems like the extremes of deep snow and below zero temps are behind us. That's a relief.

pottery: I haven't actually made any pottery since before Christmas. I didn't want to fight the weather to go back and forth to the studio. Recently however, I've been in daily and cleaning up. I can't adequately express how dirty it was. Between clay dust, smoke and whatever the stuff is from wood fired stove, and normal lack-of-cleaning-up, it is amazing. I'm purging as well as cleaning up. There was (and is) an awfully lot of work that has sat unsold and unused in the studio for years. So I am taking the hammer to it. I have broken many, many pots and am going to continue to do the same. They are pots I am tired of looking at, had some small flaw, aren't that great, etc. So they go. When I am done I expect it to be very liberating and I will feel like starting over fresh. I would actually like to start over with nothing at all in my studio, but that's not going to happen. So I am breaking as many as I can stand to break.

Other Art: I have realized why I am so on and off about my other art interests, drawing, design, embellishment, sewing, bookbinding, etc. Whereas I work at pottery almost every day. On some level I consider pottery a job and the other things I do a hobby. I need to even that out a little more. I have a couple of schemes to address that. I keep an journal in my computer files and write almost daily, although about boring things such as the weather, and what I am going to do that day. An idea from Pinterest is do a journal sketchbook. Most journal sketchbooks I have seen examples of are a little corny IMHO and focus on something like "I am woman finding who I am" or something similar. I am thinking of a sketchbook that is much more mundane, something like trees I saw that day. Not sure how I will approach the other medias I want to work on.

Drawing: I'm realizing how lazy I am with drawing, not just getting them done, but the time and effort I put in on the drawing itself. My sketch journal won't help with that as that lends itself to quick. I may have to go back to drawing from photographs.

My Family: I think they are still out there. I don't have reason to believe otherwise. Actually phoned my sister on her birthday, got the date wrong and phoned her the day before. She was not amused, by this error and I got a cold, clipped conversation from her.

SCA: See "My Family" above.
morgaina: (OMG)
I have been self-deprecating about my writing knowledge I know.
The reason is that as a craftsman of many years I am more than aware of how years and training is required to get good at artistic ventures. Whereas all I have with writing is enthusiasm and a creative background. But right now at least, that’s fine with me because I am having a blast.

We have been picking from 1-3 words from a box and then free writing using those words.
For this poem the words were ”only & how”. There is no background explanation to this poem at all. It just came out this way.

Only on top of the Mountain
Only look to the left
only horses and hogs
what matters is how they are arranged
pink, piebald, white
bristling nostrils, flicking ears, screams
no....put them in order.
The Mountain is how we arrange
how we want to see them
under their hard hooves is how.


Jan. 6th, 2016 11:15 am
morgaina: (Reality ruins)
So after spending a little under $1000. in 2 & 1/2 months and having it repaired again yesterday the pellet stove quit working in the middle of the night again last night. At least it wasn't way below zero. To say I am discouraged is an understatement. Not sure of what the next step is, but it will come.

There has not been a huge amount of snow recently, but enough that I was able to get my good snow plow guy to plow my road, and plow it he did. The foreseeable forecast is an inch every once in awhile, which is not bad at all. I was concerned about getting back to my house after 12th Night, but that doesn't seem a concern now.

I have put a photo from my Cambodian adventure on my desktop. I want to think only of that good time.
Crossing the Rainbow Bridge to Angor Wat. Japanese tourist flirting with young Monks.

9 9
Farmer watching her buffalo next to Preup Wat.
morgaina: (snow)
My pellet stove went out last week and didn't work for about 5 days. I phoned the repair place, but they couldn't send a repairman out until today. It was below freezing and I heated with space heaters and a small wood cook stove. I bought a new space heater and was impressed with how much more efficient they are now than they used to be. Since I had the pellet stove repaired last November too, I seriously considered heating just with space heaters. I rather dread looking at my next electric bill though.

I am doing something I haven't done in ages, making myself garb for this weekend. I saw that my best tunic, which I wear the most has a hole in it just from use. Plus one of the goals I had/have for retirement was to get better at sewing construction. How pattern pieces fit together is very confusing to me. Not a talent I was born with, but I believe it will get better with practice. Plus I have a great stash of wonderful fabrics from visiting the Los Angeles fabric district and the Cambodian silk merchants.

I’m really looking forward to 12th Night and getting far away from the Palouse. Hope the roads are good.
morgaina: (snow)
Decided that it wouldn't be a good idea to do a recap of 2015.
It wasn't a particularly bad year for me, however, December/January are terrible times of the year for me, and whatever I wrote would reflect that. I was really quite happy last Spring, I would have said ”Joyous”, but my kiln wasn't working. I was even pretty happy during the Summer in spite of the extended heat wave and also extended smoke. But dealing with all the crap the weather throws at me gets physically harder and more discouraging to deal with.

I haven't gone back to the studio yet. I hope that I am gathering material on a subconscious level, which is what my research on creativity says happens. In the meantime I am practicing Sumi-E brushwork and doing a lot of different styles of art for the signatures for the book a couple of friends and I are doing. A wide variety of different styles and mediums. I am really enjoying doing them.


Dec. 29th, 2015 07:34 pm
morgaina: (snow)
I've been working a bit on my Sumi-E and have been frustrated at how awful they have been.
Yesterday especially, other than some winter maintenance I spent my time on my brushwork and was disappointed with everything.
Maybe the practice is beginning to make a difference though, or maybe I am less hard on myself because when I took a break from other things and did a few Sumi-E, I was much happier with them.
They obviously aren't very good yet, but they are not throw-away bad as the others were.
I am still just working on the 4 brush strokes, at this time I can't imagine how the painters combined strokes to be something else, seems impossibly difficult.
The sepia background has sprayed walnut oil a friend gave me. I think that stuff is supposed to be sprayed on after adding ink or graphite or whatever. It's an awful background to work over.

Da snow

Dec. 28th, 2015 09:30 am
morgaina: (snow)
I am still free, for several days now. We have gotten perhaps 1 & 1/2 inches of new snow since I last posted and over the next two days another 1-2 are forecast. Then 1/2 week of nothing coming from the sky. Not bad, I can live with that.

I am now wondering about conditions for 12th Night. Even if I catch a ride over with Phelan, I wonder about how cold it will be? If my house will freeze up while I'm gone, or if it snows hard and I can't get from the highway to my house? Additionally, how difficult it will be to take and pick up Amby from the Kennels, which is located on a worse road than mine?

I have been doing various art projects. Not as much as I'd like because winter maintenance takes up a lot of time and energy. Drawing, working on my book signatures, practicing Sumi-E brushwork, and started a new sewing project. I haven't spent time in the studio, I tried to shovel the berm that is in the way, but it has turned from snow to granite. I walked over it a time or two, but am not comfortable with that especially since I am always carrying things back and forth.

Last time I spoke to Jenny, she said the grant will probably happen in the fall rather than March. This means they plan to stay another year. Wish I could go sooner, but it's still very exciting to consider. Maybe my summer trip will be to L.A. again.
morgaina: (christmas)
Thought I better hurry and do a December post because Christmas Icon.

This is going to be another non-holiday for me. Last time it was hard, but I am aware that's how not all, but most of my Holidays are and are going to be. However, ETSY sales have been amazing this season.

Amby was particularly non-brain today. Underneath my house I have about 1& 1/2 foot of standing water, yes, I know thats bad but I cant do anything about it. During one of Amby's walk abouts, he got under the house. I heard him howling because he couldn't get out again. I could see him, but didn't think I could get under there to rescue him. He was just too afraid to come through the water. I found some long ware boards from my studio, laid on the wet ground leading to the hole holding them, and made kind of a gang plank for him to cross to safety. But he was afraid and kept crying. I really didn't want to crawl under there on my hands and knees through icy mud-water to get him, and didn't know if could do it, so I tried coaxing him out with a treat. He almost didn't come anyway, and I was going to open a can of tuna, his favorite food, when he decided to try the gangplank. He managed to escape leaving us both muddy and chilled, but then he was perfectly happy, got his treat, and I was left grumpy.
morgaina: (Default)
I got this email:

Good Morning and how are you doing? I am Ralph Baldwin i would like to know if you
do portrait painting , i have a picture of my friend that just got married, but i
was not around for their wedding, so i want you to help me paint the picture of the
couple i want to present it to them as a gift please Advise how long would it take
you to get this done.. i have the specification of what i want below. and also
advise if you accept credit cards

Frame size: 18"x24" (45cm x 60cm)

What ever question you need please feel free to ask me via email

Thank you
Best Regards
Does it seem like a scam?
Its abbreviated text seems scamy? But some people just aren't erudite writers.
He may have gotten my business card from one of the places I show, but why does he is asking a potter rather than a painter? Am I the only artist he knows of, or did he see one of the very few drawings I've displayed?
I could possibly do the commission, but won't, as I“m not a painter I would take so long and struggle so hard I would loose money and gain frustration. So if this is legit, I would pass it along to one of my painter friends. But it would be terrible if it scammed them. My art club gals aren't as cynical as I am ;-)
morgaina: (jumping elephant)
My Daughter-in-Law, Jenny teaches art in an International School in Beijing, as I've mentioned. She tells me that her school wants to develop their Ceramics Program and to that end they have been bringing in "Experts" to teach workshops for the children. Jenny complained several times about the experts they brought in not being good teachers and not having all that much ceramic knowledge (Grad Students). Several times she has said how much better I could do.

So she wrote me that she is writing a Grant to BRING ME TO CHINA TO TEACH CERAMICS FOR TWO WEEKS NEXT SPRING! (I have to go lie down after writing that.)
She and my son are going to help me pay the flight, although I have a ton of free miles from my credit card. And the grant will pay me a stipend for teaching.

The truth is, I feel a undeserving, China is (arguably) the birthplace of ceramics...very arguably. But their tradition is so, so, so venerable. They must have "real" experts there. (Of course I don't know about what happened to the traditional potters during the revolution and during industrialization?) And I do know ceramics and I am a good teacher of little guys. So I can do the job.

It's not a sure thing yet, so I am not posting on Facebook, but Jenny is not flighty and would not have written me if it wasn't a very good possibility.

My goals are within 5 months to become fluent in Mandarin, lose weight and get very fit so that I can climb all over the Great Wall. (I think that becoming fluent in Mandarin will be the easiest ;-))

I get to see Wee Beatrice!!!!
morgaina: (Exeter jug)
70 years ago, the United States dropped “Fat Boy” on Nagasaki, Japan, which, along with the Atomic Bomb dropped on Hiroshima three days earlier, either ended, or speeded the end of WW11. I have thought about this since I was 12, (when I spent my Scholastic Books money on the book *Hiroshima* and all the other kids thought that I was a nerd although we didn’t have the term *nerd* at the time.)
Anyone who has been paying attention since that world-altering event has been concerned about it, but added to that is that both my parents had a small amount of direct involvement. My mother was a “Rosie the Riveter” for the Army, only rather than riveting she repaired airplane radios from planes that had been shot down. Towards the end of the war an order came in that they were to halt all other projects and solder cables. The job was what she called “hush hush” and security was even more so during thIs job. They didn’t tell the workers at the time what it was that they were working on. The powers that be separated the various jobs and sent them to different bases all over the United States, so no one would know or could figure out just what it was that they were working on. It was later that she found out what she had been working on and she said “I felt bad that I helped kill so many people.“ A surprising separation of thought from the “anything to help the war effort” mentality that she had espoused.
Dad’s experience was direct too. He was a Marine in the Pacific Theatre, his platoon was ordered to go into Nagasaki with “bayonets fixed”. But when they got to the Island they met no resistance at all. Not surprising to us now who know what the atomic bomb did, but they didn’t know at the time.
They were in Nagasaki even before it was widely known that it was dangerous. Dad said that a Lieutenant and he jumped into a jeep and drove through the city out of curiosity before the city was closed off and people forbidden to enter because of radiation. So he and the Lieutenant drove through ground zero in an open jeep.
As with every person I’ve ever known or heard of who fought in WWII he never talked about it. I’m not sure how I knew but after I was an adult I talked a friend of mine, who was a freelance news reporter to interview Dad, which he did and published a feature article in the local paper. Dad talked a little more to the reporter and talked a little about how everything was flattened, complete devastation and how the world couldn‘t suffer another atomic bomb.
He never got sick from the full-face of radiation he must have experienced, which is curious, but lucky for me.

June again

Jun. 24th, 2015 07:10 am
morgaina: (Exeter jug)
Spring and Summer are my favorite times of the year. Its still lush and green out, and the weather is glorious. my favorite thing to do is to sit on the front porch steps with coffee while Amby runs. Ordinarily, I just let hi be free-range, organic dog, but his favorite thing to do is to stand in the raised tomato bed, eat compost then go in the house and puke.

Ryan didn't want the kiln. I don’t know what to do with it now. She is the only person I can think of who could use a kln that large and I have to get it out of the studio to get the new one in. I am really at a loss. This is a small area and there aren't that many ceramic workers, plus to use a kiln that size a person would have to be pretty serious, not a dabbler.

my daughter is off on a new adventure. She moved to Las Vegas, at least for awhile to see if she likes it. i got a call from her yesterday and she said she was going to have to phone my sister. Apparently my nephew saw her Facebook post about being in Las Vegas and told my sister who is throwing a fit. She equates Las Vegas to Sodom and Gomorrah. I didn't tell her Celadon was going to be moving there because I am tired of hearing her criticize my kids, which she does every time we talk. I was planning to visit Celadon this Summer in LV, but I've had a few unexpected expenses, so not as sure now. And I’m not going anywhere until the kiln thing is settled.


Mar. 12th, 2015 05:43 pm
morgaina: (Exeter jug)
Most of the time I keep a filter on. But I still too often get into trouble when it slips off. This used to happen at work fairly regularly.
It happened again recently, now people in my arts group are mad at me. Not everyone, but those I am usually around the most. I have felt like persona non grata and I have been hiding out, but it will pass.

Great weather though. For quite awhile I ignored parts of my property, I was simply too exhausted to do anything about it during my times off. I started tearing into pruning this week, and my neglect affected things rather amazingly. Wish the weather would stay just like it is now, until I catch up. I forgot how fun it is to do these things, especially when one is hiding out.
morgaina: (Exeter jug)
I have been keeping up with a drawing a day for the most part. Had to miss when during driving times to and from KASB, although I could have stopped and taken some time to do it, but driving is tiring and being tired is about my worst sketch enemy.
So anyway, here they are: drawing, 34th
I did this drawing during court, I don't know who the subject is.

drawing, 35th week
this drawing was of my bag and I did it while at Gavin's place. Gavin suggested that I put down a sepia wash on my paper and draw on that so I could use a white conte crayon for highlights. I am anxious to try his suggestion and hope that Michael's has walnut ink so that I don't have to send for it.

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