The beginnings of a theme?

Here is another painting very recently finished in the studio. It features another cat portrait! I don’t know if that will become a theme yet. I’m more interested in the spaces and fabric patterns right now… it’s just that the cats want to be in the cozy spaces! What can you do?

Cat on the Rug
Cat on the Rug

Day 2, Day 3 and Day 4 of the Drawing Challenge

Whooops! Not one day into this challenge I forgot to draw and post. Don’t worry, I have already caught up and am still enthusiastic about the rest of the month’s drawings.

Day two was favorite animal… Currently my favorite animal is a cat – my cat to be specific. She is lovely.

graphite sketch of cat
Dragon sleeping

Day three of the challenge was Favorite food. Mine is pizza or…

drawing marker of favorite food pizza sushi
Pizza or Sushi

Day four is favorite place. I choose a two story bookstore. Not that I have been in one recently… or ever… but I’m reading The Haunted  Bookshop by Christopher Morely right now and well, it deserves to be drawn. I would LOVE being there right now…

sketchbook drawing marker of library book store two story
The two story bookstore

Butters

Hi Folks,

It’s been quiet on the painting front since returning home from my residency, but I’ve been busy in other areas of life. Honest.

Go visit multicraftual.wordpress.com if you are interested in crafting and want to watch my friend Liby and I in a new video podcast. We yammer on about crafting, we sing songs and put knitted garments on her cat pancake etc. Pancake is a star. The podcast is worth watching just for his expressions.

Crafting podcasts (and there are many: dramatic knits, stockinette zombies, 90% Knitting, the knit girllls, whatcha swatchin, yarnivore, craftstash, willow fairy knits to name just a few) are most often watched while engaged in knitting or crocheting yourself. As I recently explained to my mother, it is not meant to be captivating in the same way a tv show or movie is… rather, it is like sitting down with friends to knit and gab together. That is the best I can explain it.

In other news, the Brit (husband) and I are gearing up for a move into a new home July 1st. Same town. Portales. It means “porches” in Spanish. We like it.

The move means less time in the future with the neighborhood cat Butters. Since I got back from residency, Butters has been visiting me every morning for pats and scritches. His meow is a scratchy pathetic sound like something from a dying animal. But he is nevertheless quite talkative and affectionate. I will miss him (and frequently walk through our old neighborhood just to visit him).

orange cat picture
Butters, mi amigo
photo of orange cat on porch
on the porch

Residency in review: part 5

I wanted to share with you a picture of some of the pillows I sewed to look like books for the library cart.

pillows that look like books
book pillows

Along with the pillows I made a silkscreen in the same manner I’ve discussed before on the blog. The design was inspired by a page from a book in the elsewhere library that I have re-located to live on the cart and be read by kids visiting the museum.

making a silk screen
making the silkscreen
hand made silk screen
finished screen

I printed the design on some of the book pillows as either pages or covers.

pillows that look like books
"everything is different" book (pillow) cover

While I was at it I also printed a tote-bag:

elsewhere residency silkscreen printed tote bag
tote bag for sale (profits to elsewhere) at elsewhere collaborative shop

Residency in review: part 4

Below are some close-ups of the puppets I made as part of my library cart. I asked the staff at elsewhere if they were an animal, what would it be and then made an animal-puppet version of them. The results were: a badger, a duck, a turtle, a mouse, an owl and a one-eyed brontosaurus:

hand puppets in puppet theatre, elsewhere, greensboro, nc
hand puppets in the puppet theatre nook
hand puppet of a badger
badger
hand puppet of a duck
duck
hand puppet of a turtle
turtle
hand puppet of a mouse
mouse
hand puppet of an owl
owl
hand puppet of a one-eyed brontosaurus
one-eyed brontosaurus

Residency in review: part 3

Here is the sewing workshop at elsewhere, where I spent a lot of time. Can you find me in the picture?

jessie dodington in the sewing workshop at elsewhere, greensboro, nc
where's waldo in the sewing workshop?

This is the newly painted cart with my sewn puppet-theatre curtains:

library cart in elsewhere, greensboro, nc
Puppet theatre!

and here are the puppets I made sitting on the newly-sewn bench cushion. We have a mouse, a duck, a turtle, an owl, a badger and a one-eyed brontosaurus – in that order.

hand puppets at elsewhere, greensboro, nc
hand puppets in the theatre

Sewing day

Today I re-covered the cushion for the cart bench. The cart has already been re-painted and the new removable cushion cover now matches my new scheme (which you will see soon).

This is the lovely sunny room I was working in:

photo of Jessie Dodington at Elsewhere cooperative greensboro, nc
Working on the cushion

And this was my view most of the day:

photo of fabric sewing, sewing machine
sewing machine love

Thank you to Lauren for all her help measuring and scheming.

My project, the boss and bear claws – aka the best week ever.

Hi folks!

This past week at Elsewhere whizzed by! My project is a re-invention of the library cart! This little nook on wheels is a part of a “traveling menagerie” (see here). But its home is in the ceiling-high living library of elsewhere. It has a puppet theatre, shelves for books and a bench with cushions for lounging. A seriously day-dream gem of a spot!

Here are some pictures of the cart before I began my work:

photo of library cart at elsewhere cooperative
Front of cart with puppet theatre
photo of library cart at elsewhere, greensboro
Back of cart with bench and bookshelves

So, I’m imagining Elsewhere as an indoor park, which it really is in so many ways. I’m drawing upon my past as a park guide, interpreter and naturalist and drawing upon the wild aspects in elsewhere to make this space sing.

My first step was to strip it of the miscellaneous fabric and pictures that were haphazardly fastened to it, fill its nicks with putty and sand it down with help from the building curator, tool-wielding diva extraordinaire Jen.

jessie dodington sanding a cart at elsewhere greensboro, nc
Power sander!

This is where I have to take a moment to tell you I’m wearing an inside-out Bruce Springsteen t-shirt that I bought at his recent concert in Greensboro. That’s right folks. I saw the boss in concert and my life is now complete. (Mother, my shirt is inside out on purpose, to protect it from getting paint on it of course.)

Meanwhile I’m collecting books and items from elsewhere’s collection for display and contextualization on my cart.

It’s been a great week and I’m happy to say It only got better when I came to use the internet at the Green Bean coffee shop. Here I discovered they have bear claw pastries – quite a favorite treat of mine from Saturdays at the farmers’ Market growing up.

eating a bear claw pastry
Mmmm. bear claw.

Have a happy Monday everyone!