implements for hunkering

Well this never-ending cold's grip is finally loosening, my head is clearing, energy is returning, errands have been run, there's food in the house and all but one of my new books have arrived.  I think I'm pretty much set to shut down and commence a long overdue refill of the old creative well ... three weeks later then I had planned, but who's counting.  Taking this kind of time, well for me taking any time, seems a great luxury for which I am enormously grateful.  Another luxury is the library I've accumulated.  My trove of treasures far surpasses any of the libraries in the area, remnants of my collecting obsession while in Port Townsend ... a library which, thanks to very generous Christmas gifts, has several lovely new additions.

Here's my existing hoard ... the closet shelves hold the oversize volumes and the more exotic subjects, you know like tiaras and couture accessories, along with general design and some more specifics like product packaging, Japanese aesthetics, home interiors and my library of clay books from my old potting days.

My new shelf holds the jewelry books I use most frequently, plus I just love looking at their spines on a regular basis.  A well designed book is such a joy.

So, my starting point is the Middle Ages and back a few thousand years.  The new additions to my antiquities library:  Medieval Jewellery, a slim volume from the collection of the V&A museum is just gorgeous; 7000 Years of Jewelry is looking equally luscious and covers the globe; Primitive and Folk Jewelry is a Dover book that I found for $3 - I've checked it out from the library for weeks on end and finally have my own copy; Masterpieces of Ancient Jewelry is eye candy at its finest and focuses on extraordinary jewels from the "cradle of civilization" in North Africa.

I'll continue with a couple of favorites my own library.  These three are especially wonderful and are layered with my neon fringe.  Moravia Magna and Cradle of Christianity are a couple of excellent finds from the used bookseller in Port Townsend - lord I miss that bookstore.  I've had Art of the Dark Ages for many years - it's one of my absolute favorites.  It's out of print, but there's some really cheap copies to be had via Amazon's booksellers.

Armed with my crucial accompaniments, sketchbooks - old ones as well as the new,  Ticonderoga #2's freshly sharpened with plenty of erasers, treasured neon stickies, and copious amount of tea in my favorite mug, I'm ready to park myself and do some serious perusing and focusing - joy joy joy!

If I happen to get bored or need a break, I've got a few other new distractions ...

I've got one more fashion oriented book OTW - 100 New Fashion Designers.  Funny thing about this one, it doesn't seem to want to come to Asheville.  I ordered it once and it got mangled in shipping and went back to the seller.  I ordered it again and it got lost.  I just contacted the seller today and they're shipping it again today - expedited.  I should have it tomorrow or Thursday.  Weird.  Anyway, Amazon's got it for cheap!  I've done quite well stumbling across their close-outs.
Then, as if I need any further distractions or diversions, I've got a couple from the library.  I've been curious about the Twyla Tharp book for a while and I've finally started reading the Golden Compass.  It's my current favorite movie and I'm really enjoying the book (so very different) thus far.  Best of all, there's 3 more in the series.  The Fiberarts book is more nice inspiration that is not jewelry specific - that's always a good thing.  This one, #6, is one of my favorites.

Needless to say, I've got some inspiring days ahead.  I always read Danielle's WhiteHotTruth blog - she's had some great posts since the new year.  Today, she's got a Burning Questions segment with Seth Godin - I love Seth Godin!  From the post - his definition of art:
1. Art is made by a human being.
2. Art is created to have an impact, to change someone else.
3. Art is a gift. You can sell the souvenir, the canvas, the recording... but the idea itself is free, and the generosity is a critical part of making art.

Hmmm ... a couple more things from my 'to-blog-about' list:
A jewelry website I just discovered - Gem Kingdom from the Netherlands.  The site is classic Euro cool and the jewelry is kind of a fun cross between Subversive Jewelry and Love Heals.

A very special recent project ...

I made this for a friend that's going through a tough time.  It's been at least a couple of years since I did anything like this.  The vessel is about 1 1/2" x 2" with moonstone and rubies embedded, dangling is another ruby, an aquamarine nugget, a quartz point and a ragged sort of heart charm, all hanging from a soft rose silk braid.  I'm really pleased with the results.

Considering this post and the last, it's readily apparent that I've been in a pensive place for a bit.  For background music, I've been going back and forth between my Hildegarde Pandora station and Michael Hedges.  We have a Windham Hills DVD with some classic Michael Hedges that never fails to blow me away.  We got to see him twice, once in '93 at a beautiful venue here in town and later at a small club in early '97 , just a few months before he died in a car crash.   That first time we were so amazed that he could accomplish his complex sound - solo.  His exquisite genius lives on in his music.  For your consideration - Aerial Boundaries:

I think that's it for now.  I've got my work cut out for me in the days ahead, but what delicious good fun my 'work' promises to be.

many blessings - kvk
Kathy Van Kleeck3 Comments