This is the archive for the ‘inspiration’ Category

Bark Park

February 15th, 2018

Working on a tapestry design of tree branches and spent the morning at Morris Arboretum sketching trees. Came across an area I didn’t know about called a Bark Park.

Image of Bark Park sign

Had to take time from my sketching and shoot these wonderful textures.

Image of Tall Stewartia Bark Image of Paperbark Maple Bark

Image of Bark Image of Kaizuka Chinese Juniper Bark


January 15th, 2018

Took a poetry workshop this past weekend at Woodmere Art Museum with Ursula Rucker.
Never studied writing or poetry (since high school and…) and want to incorporate words in my work, this sounded interesting as a good place to start—and it was! Small group—5 plus Ursula. We listened to music and just wrote what came to us…several of the women had written poems before and their work off the top of their head was so strong. Mine responded to the rhythm of the music and perhaps where my life is right now.

Image of my writing journal


Run, Run, Run, Run, Run, Run;
Everywhere — up/down, here/there;


Dance, Dance, Dance, Dance, Dance, Dance,
Round and round and round and round.
Still a pluse—still hanging on
Then start again

Look, Look, Look;
See that, see this -Look, look – LOOK
Closer and closer
I see you. Do you see me?

Run, Run, Run, Run, Run, Run;
We can run
Take my hand—Run, Run, Run;
This way, that way—over and over and over;
Is there anything else?
Life goes on —the world still turns – who knows why
I don’t. BUT, I’m glad you’re here!

Run, Run, Run, Run, Run, Run;
Together, step outside the race,
Slow down and Dance, Dance, Dance!

Joy in darkness when you are with me—I am not alone—hold my hand—in the dark/in the light;
I am strong —you are too —we are strong—all are strong —we can do this
Circles, Circles, Circles – Round and Round and Round—all of us

Night/Day, Night/Day—Work/Play, Work,/Play
Sleep/Love, Sleep/Love —Think/Feel, Think/Feel
All of it—LIFE

Run, Run, Run, Run, Run, Run;
In this world and the next
Run, Run, Run, Run, REST/Enjoy—REST/Enjoy
Run, Run, Run, Run, Run, Run;
All the world —TOGETHER!

Needs work but I had fun. Thanks, Ursula, for opening a door!

Rotator Drawings

November 18th, 2017

When I fell on my face this summer in Colorado while hiking I concentrated on my sorry, sad bruised face and iced my wrenched shoulder. Well, perhaps I should have paid more attention to my sorry, sad shoulder because an MRI finally showed I have “complete-full thickness tears” of almost anything I could tear and they have retracted! Plus other wear and tear… Luckily, I have a lot of movement but unluckily not a lot of strength – so lots of PT, sexy black tape on my arms and learning how to deal… Again, when I angst about things I draw them. So… I got hold of my MRI files and printed them out – another learning event as I’m a mac person and these only open on a pc – but I found a wonderful instructor at school to bring me up to speed and I’ve printed some slices out.
Now I’m studying them, sketching them, researching tendons and the like and starting to draw them. I’m now friendly with words like supraspinatus, infraspinatus and glenoid neck… and lots more. Not my idea of fun!

Image of MRI Image of MRI Image MRI

Like anything I draw I begin by doing factual drawings to understand the subject – then I can move on from there. I explore various media – so far I have worked with charcoal, watercolor, and oil pastel. Here are some of my first attempts at owning my shoulder! There will be more – perhaps even a small tapestry… perhaps…

Image of MRI study Image of Studies of my shoulder
Image abstract MRI study

Oh, and I also sing in the shower to my shoulder about how we’re going to get through this… but that’s another story!

Moments of Wonder

October 29th, 2017

One of the great things about having a cell phone is that a camera is always with me. Perhaps not as versatile as my regular camera with it’s interchangeable lenses but the important thing is that it’s there. Whenever I’m walking or wandering about and see amazing pattern or colors I can take them home with me and they end up in my work. Lots of times we might be on a road trip or other planned event and I take my camera and sometimes images happen and sometimes they don’t but my cell is always with me capturing serendipitous unplanned moments of wonder. Here are a few from this summer. Some from Colorado, some from New England, some from walks in the Wissahickon here at home in Philadelphia.
[Click image for larger view.]

Image of twisted bark Image of rocks with greens and purples. Image of curved rocks

Image of bright orange bark Image of torn bark. Image of textured Bark

The textures and colors can keep me busy sketching and drawing for days, weeks, and much longer as my head swims with ideas for paint and fiber translations.

Taste the Ocean

December 29th, 2016

Every year between Christmas and New Years I like to taste the ocean – sort of touching the rest of the world and reminding my self that there’s more to life than the day to day! Not that I mind my day to day—I love my work and I enjoy teaching but by the end of the year I need recharging and there’s nothing like an empty beach – or nearly empty beach with endless waves to do that.

Photographing down the shore Ocean waves
The light keep changing – sparkling off the waves. Almost every image I took had a different feeling.

Leaf in sand Broken shell Shells

At first it looked like the beach had very little on it but there are always treasures if you keep looking—this single leaf, a broken shell here, another there. My gift for the day was Orange, orange stones, orange shell bits, stripes and patterns of all sorts! These will show up in studies of stripes, of curves in my little tapestries, perhaps even paintings…they fill my dreams!

Beach textures
Sand fence mMrks in Sand
More textures and patterns.

It was a beautiful day—not too cold for late Dec. Sun in and out—always changing— clean, crisp fresh air—this will keep me working for a while!

Chili and Beer

And we like to end this yearly tradition with a crock of chili and a beer at Charlie’s in Somers Point, NJ. Oh, and the ocean tasted salty!

Tree Bark

November 7th, 2016

Trees have the most wonderful Bark textures. This month we visited Double Trouble State Park in NJ. It has old abanded cranberry bogs, dark cedar water and texture upon texture. The last two of these images are from that trip. It got me thinking of the many photographs I have done of close up of trees over the years. Next Pattern Observer posted a request for inspirational images with the hashtag #POinspitation.

This reminded me of the wonderful bark I saw years ago at the New York Botanical Gardens with its soft colors and pealing layers. When looking for it I came up with others including this poor bumpy tree in the Wissahickon Trail where we walk many mornings. These are a few of many.

This shaggy image with its face of an old bearded man with his stubby nose and the peeling Birch in Maine are favs.

These are the two from last weeks trip to Double Trouble that started this barky trip. Lichen covers so many trees and is supposed to be a sample of clean air – one can hope. Such a wonderful world.