Saturday, February 19, 2011

Visions from a Mixed Media Desk: Home from the bead show...

Visions from a Mixed Media Desk: Home from the bead show...: "Anne and I went to the 'Intergalactic Bead Show' today. Starting early, we had breakfast at First Watch (unbelievably good). On to the sh..."

Home from the bead show...

Anne and I went to the "Intergalactic Bead Show" today. Starting early, we had breakfast at First Watch (unbelievably good). On to the show at the Sharonville Convention Center in Cincinnati. We found a good parking spot, which knowing how our feet would hurt by the time we left, was a good thing.

We walked in after signing up to receive emails from this bunch for the rest of our lives. I did not give them my phone number.

When we walked in the show area, it was instant shock and awe. Neither of us have been to a bead show before, and it was just amazing. Completely overwhelming just by the sheer size of the exhibits. We patrolled up and down the aisles for a couple of hours (we were very methodical) and found our fair share of treasures.

Anne does this because she actually uses the beads. I do it because I have a serious problem with stash! Tonight, I will start taking things out of bags and looking at them lovingly. Then the beads will go back into the bags until I need to take them out and look at them again! A great day was had by all.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

And Speaking of Rowan Hall...

While I was cruising the web trying to find a picture of little Rowan Hall, I found the most interesting article regarding protests at Miami University in April 1970. This was, as the article sets out, right before the Kent State University killings. I had no idea that Rowan Hall had once been the ROTC Hall. It sure has changed (and is about to be demolished for a new student center).

I couldn't get the link to work correctly, so here is the article by Dr. Phillip Shriver:

1970, Vietnam War Protests:
Anti-Vietnam War protests reached their zenith in the spring of 1970 when the ROTC offices and classrooms in Rowan Hall were occupied in a sit-in on April 15. After the Kent State shootings in May, 720 American universities closed. Miami was one of them. We closed for a week. When we reopened, it was with a plan for pass or fail grades to replace letter grades for students who opted for that alternative.

It was something you lived day by day, night by night. We had students from campuses that were closed coming to our campus, camping out in tent cities at the edge of campus, north and south. Many of them from Antioch College, and they were out to close other schools.

We had seven fires one night on campus. I received a number of death threats, and I even had a Molotov cocktail left on the front porch of Lewis Place.

It was a very difficult time, but I would say that we had a lot of cooperation from students and faculty. We closed and when we reopened, we had 930 students with the faculty standing guard in our buildings so if any fires did break out, we could get an almost instantaneous response.

Their objective at Miami was to close down the ROTC and the Air Force and the Navy as a military presence on the campus, and my argument was … far better to have the military on a civilian campus where they’re interacting with students with varying opinions day after day than to put them exclusively in a West Point or Annapolis or out in Colorado, the Air Force Academy, where all they do is talk to each other.

The flush-in was one of the events that spring. The flush-in was a terrible, terrible experience. Never forget Bill Beck calling when they had the flush-in. He said, “Dr. Shriver”… he always called me Phil, but this time Dr. Shriver … “the water in my basement is up to the piano keys.” That water was suddenly dumped on the town. When they all flushed, it had to go somewhere, pipes couldn’t carry it away. And the town immediately reacted. “This has gone far enough.” Enough is enough, so it boomeranged.

After that experience in the spring of ’70, we moved the ROTC down to Millett Hall. It was no longer in the center of the campus and not quite as visible as it had been before.

A Night at Rowan Hall

Ah... How could I have been away so long? Tonight, my dear friend, Anne, and I reinstated our commitment to make art one time a week at Rowan Hall. Rowan is at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio - not the University of Miami (Florida). Anne and I both work day jobs at Miami, and discovered Rowan Hall a couple of years ago when taking a class on making lampwork beads during a wonderful opportunity called "CraftSummer". Anyway, we had slowly gotten away from our lampworking, and tonight decided to go back to Rowan. It was wonderful. Anne sat and worked the torch, and I sat and cut felt for my beads. We talked a little, but mostly listened to the torch's blue flame and my scissors cutting away. The usual characters filtered in and out tonight, making it even more like home - Leah and Dave were there. The bus drivers came in to take a potty break, and the artist-in-residence came in to work late into the night. The usuals.

I am not so interested in making lampwork beads anymore (at least not right now), but I am interested in our warm, quiet nights spent huddled together in quiet creativity. I have missed Rowan, and am happy to be back. See you next week, friends...

Monday, February 14, 2011

Finally decided what to do with my beads!

I have finally decided that my felt beads need to be bracelets - at least some of them! I am still perfecting the method and how to do it, but I am pretty satisfied with the first results. Let me know what you think!

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Ok - last post for today

So, I decided that I would start following some of my favorite artists on Facebook, and was pleased to discover that most of them are there, and that they are willing to accept "friend" requests from total strangers. Now I am connected with these pillars of mixed media art, and the information that they post on Fb. It's sort of surreal to be reading posts from these people, and then look on your bookshelf and see books with their names on them.

I have actually had one artist (probably my favorite mixed media artist, Kelli Nina Perkins) comment on my felt beads. That expanded my head a little! I've also been in touch with several other artists to ask questions or comment on a post they made. It's so great to have these resources and inspiration right at my fingertips. The down side is that I spend WAY too much time on the computer.

A few more Fabulous Felt Beads

Ok, I can't resist sharing just one more picture of the felt beads! They are just so much fun to make!

My Fabulous Felt Beads!

My latest passion - felt beads. They will make a pretty bracelet, necklace, or I have used them in an old jar (just to look at). If you love color, you will love these!
This is a cupcake pincushion (designed by Betz White) and a couple of old spools which I have decorated with grosgrain ribbon and buttons. They are good-for-nothing, but so cute!

Hello World

So I guess since I have business cards, I should have a blog. A blog to post all of my successful ventures into the world of art. Hmmm...

So far, I've only made art (is that the correct name?) for my friends and family. I seem to collect art supplies a lot more than I create art. I go from one project to another every couple of weeks. Even so, my need to create and learn about art seems to be growing stronger. I assume that's a good thing.

So, I thought I would start this blog so that I can say I have one in case anyone ever wants to know. (Doubtful, but just maybe...)