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I have been looking at Australian aboriginal art a lot lately. I find its strong form and abstract storytelling absolutely fascinating. After admiring Mitjili Napurrula‘s stark paintings, I thought I ‘d try to make a stamp inspired by her work.

Using the foam pad method, I drew some shapes on a piece of paper, then rubbed it off on a foam pad and cut around two pieces. I glued them on the first transparent plastic piece I found (an old box of sewing supplies kit — I knew I ‘d find a use for it!), and tested it on some flannel fabric that was laying around. Despite the rather furry surface of the fabric, the paint transferred well enough.

Encouraged, I stamped some more on a plain red zippered pouch I ‘d made a while ago that was waiting to be stamped whenever inspiration came.

This time, the fabric was a bit too rough and dark, and the result is more subtle than stark, but I still like it.

In general, I am very happy with the process and the result. I do feel odd at how similar it all is to my original inspiration, though. Obviously, I do not intend to make any financial profit out of my silly experiments in basic stamping, but still… where does flattery end and what you left is just copying? Would it be unethical to use these stamps again, perhaps in making gifts? Professional artists, please advise!

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Just as we were busy making modern bibs here, my mum happened to open a box of old linen, and guess what she came across: more bibs!

These are much more delicate, labor-intensive and skillful, just as one would expect of handmade bibs from… when? We are not sure who made them, but they are probably from the early 1900s. My mum thinks they used the one above for her, and she herself may have used some for my older brother, for special occasions.

Honestly, I am glad they were not used on me. Given my – now openly declared – underdeveloped sense of fashion, I am sure that even as a baby I would have been frustrated by all this elaborate and attention-drawing paraphernalia.

Being on the safe side of having to wear one any longer, though, I am only too grateful to have the chance to see the superb craftsmanship of my ancestors, a taste of history, fashion, and love handed down to the next generations.

Thanks mum, for taking and sending these photos!

Last weekend we went to this exhibition at the Met. Ever since I first laid eyes on the manuscript, my mind has been filled with the tiny, superb images. Looking at them truly gave me a feeling of peace and focus. I must have been ready to be amazed, a mental state that gets constant and immense satisfaction in a museum. Indeed, everywhere I looked, I felt inspired and awed by the beauty, hard work and attention put into the creation of practically every item on display, as well as its presentation, conservation, and care by everyone in their path through history.

At last, with this weekend just rolling in, and ‘assisted’ by the insomnia that has been a constant reality of late, I took out my childish tools and began copying some of the simplest designs on the manuscript.

Remembering my art history lessons, and the basic principle of learning through copying from the masters, I also wondered about the thoughts that may have crossed the minds of those whose work I copied. I have no drawing skills myself, but copying helped me look closer, and understand the flow of the design much better than I ‘d ever have done by just looking.  And of course, it was fun playing with paper and my coloring pencils, drawing whimsical little swirls almost as if they appeared suddenly off the stems of the vine design. I am not sure I will have the time to fill a whole book (those guys had the financial backing of a Duke and 3 years at their disposal), but I can still try to imagine the joy of generating so much patience, so much perseverance in order to complete even a page of such a masterpiece!

Partly due to the camera wires (my favorite scape goat), partly to too much life happening lately, once again my post is out of date.

I thought I ‘d just put up a funny picture for you, but looking at it I can’t stop thinking of the story of Columbus’ egg: the story that is meant to remind us that sometimes there is a simple solution to what you think is impossible.

(Egg tower created by my brother.)

I hear from everyone that fall is over. But it is not winter yet. So what is it now? Are we on the “hold” in-between period between fall and winter, like the pause between breathing-in and breathing-out?

Whatever it is, its colors are beautiful. Calmer, soothing, colors I would like to wear or be surrounded by. Nothing bright, just soothing, to rest the senses after the excitement of fireworks.

So I went for another walk.

The Sparkling Path in its fall look

And took photos of things I always like to see.

I found upside-down reflections.

I stepped over thorns and bushes to come closer.

And yet, I still had crafting in mind.

A fabric collage, perhaps?

Cables on a sweater?


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