Wednesday, January 28, 2015

{Glimpses} Vintage Finds

I started visiting thrift shops and antique stores for studio inspiration back in college. I was an art major in a very small town before cruising the world wide web for imagery was even an option. Seeking out vintage typography, colors, textures, and patterns is still one of my favorite things to do. Old packaging and mid century treasures fill my studio shelves for constant reminders of things that once caught my eye and often serves as a way to stir my imagination. Here are my glimpses this week.

Glimpse 1:  Color combinations of yellow, red, and turquoise seems to be a constant favorite of mine. Pair it with cool packaging and unique typography and the chances of those items coming home to my studio is pretty great.

Glimpse 2:  Oh boy do I love all shades of green and mid century textiles and cups!

Glimpse 3: Yellow, mustard, orange, and tomato is another fun, "go to" nostalgic color combination. Vintage fisher price toys, Vera textiles, random buttons, and vintage books are things that I tend to always gravitate towards. 

Glimpse 4: I love the packaging for old games - they often include really fun illustrations. These faces make me smile. 

Glimpse 5:  When I first discovered King Penguin books, I went completely bonkers. Not only are they interesting, but the patterns are always so lovely. Unfortunately they are really hard to find here in the US - particularly the northwest. They are rare gems. 

Is there a particular item you seek out at a thrift or antique shop?

Thursday, January 22, 2015

{Bibliophilia} Pinocchio: Jim Dine

I've been diving into my art books a lot lately - rediscovering favorite artists to introduce to my drawing class. It's safe to say that I'm a bibliophile through and through. I haven't traveled to Europe yet (a dream of mine) but I do own tons of books. Jim Dine is one of my favorite artists. He's so versatile and I really appreciate his drawing style. When I found his Pinocchio book, I was so excited. It matches my love of puppets and drawing all in one beautiful book. 

I was preparing for class today and thought it would be nice to photograph a few of my favorite drawings from the book to share.  

I also found this great interview with Jim at the Tate. The exhibit looks fantastic! I wish I could've seen this in person- oh those hanging books!

I'm showing this work in class tonight and thought I'd share it with you too. Do you have a favorite artist? 

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

{Glimpses} Hometown...

How many times does it take before something becomes a habit or a part of your routine? Last Wednesday I started to document my "glimpses" here as a way to participate in the drawing assignments that I give my class. I want my students to keep a sketchbook or journal where they collect images of things that they see in their daily life that inspires them. I took a drive last Wednesday making a point of pulling over to snap a photo of things that caught my eye. I found that I was looking forward to doing the same thing this Wednesday. While I won't always take photos of my hometown for this feature, I felt the need drive the backroads again today. It really has a way off clearing my mind and my stresses seem to melt away temporarily. I also just got a new zoom lens for our camera and really wanted to test it out. Here are my five Wednesday glimpses.

Glimpse 1:  Every time I pass this little building, I crane my neck to look at the vintage signage. I'm a sucker for typography and rust. So today I pulled over and got out of the car to snoop. 

Glimpse 2:  In addition to cool, vintage signs, there were old gas pumps and cars out  back. I loved the colors and shapes. 

Glimpse 3:  It was the row of birds on the roof of this barn that made me pull over. They had a really great view of the valley. I like the lines and color of grass in this photo as well. 

Glimpse 4:   Unfortunately I couldn't capture the sound, but this is what is above Sayer and I when we walk to school these days. If the sun is hitting the trumpeter swans just right, they shimmer. It's truly spectacular to witness and I always look up. I snapped a photo today to document pattern. I've been playing with images to create new pattern screens for my textiles and this may inspire a new screen print. 

Glimpse 5:   I don't think I will ever get tired of watching swans, particularly when they take flight. I've been drawing swans in thread for my plush, textiles, and screen prints so I took this photo as a study. I love the the swan's wings- so delicate and strong. I really do wish that I could fly. 

What has inspired you lately?

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

{Glimpses} Remembering to Breathe

Do you own a sketchbook? Better yet, do you use one? I have many - one in every room in in every bag. You may remember me mentioning a few posts ago that I'm teaching at the college again. Class started last week and I required every student to start using a journal to collect inspiration or "glimpses" for our drawing class. Every week, I want them to document something that they see in their everyday life that inspires them - like a texture, color, shape, mood, or image. I thought it would be fun to do the same thing but to use the klt:sketchbook to document my observations weekly.  So here are my five  Wednesday glimpses.

Glimpse 1 - I love old barns and peeling paint. While driving the backroads today, I spotted this little barn like building up on short stilts. There was something that struck me about it- maybe it was the little ladder and the idea that I would have loved this space as a fort when I was a kid. The peeling color was wonderful too. 

Glimpse 2 - I'm trying really hard to find balance right now. The addition of teaching night classes is throwing a monkey wrench into my daily schedule. The fog was so pretty today and I found that I just started driving after a post office drop off. I pulled over for a short walk on the river dike and spotted a heron on a log and I slowly made my way towards it. I was too late get the heron in this photo, but you can see him leaving. The photo is to remind me to breathe.

Glimpse 3 - There are so many trumpeter swans in the the valley that I live in - particularly these days. I really love them. I get excited when I see them on the side of the road and if I can, I'll  pull over.  I also really enjoy fog - the combination made me giddy today. The roads were empty as well. I just sat on the side of the road, up against my car and watched these guys for awhile. This photo was to capture color.

Glimpse 4 - I have driven by this building so many times and I always give it a double glance almost as if to see if it's still standing. Today the foggy light gave it extra appeal. The window, the weather vane,  the green/yellow pollen on the building, and the fog lifting is why I took this photo. The spindly trees lined up behind the swans was a bonus. 

Glimpse 5 -  When Sayer and I walk to school in the mornings, the swans are often honking and flying overhead. There is always one point during our walk that we stop and look up. I am fascinated in not only how they fly, but their formations (I was in marching band so I can completely appreciate the complexity of what they're doing). These two flew over my head today when I was walking and I was quick with the camera. This picture is for perspective both figuratively and literally. 

Did you see anything noteworthy today?

Monday, January 5, 2015

{Music Monday} Play & Repeat...

I'm honoring my old blogging routine by bringing back the Music Monday feature. Music is a huge part of my life & a necessity in the studio when I'm working. My musical tastes vary dramatically depending on mood & what I'm doing. I suppose everyone is like that.  I learned quickly when Chris & I started living together, that if, There Goes Rhymin' Simon is playing, that means Chris is dusting or deep cleaning. For me, I find that I like mellow music with a nice rhythm when I'm screen printing. What seems to get consistent studio play is the fairly new, Bahamas is Afie, album. Here's one of my favorite songs of the album- along with a little snippet that introduced me to the great trick of putting my iPhone in a (an empty) mug when listening to music. I like listening to Afie talk about his philosophy for the album as well - it's one that resonates with me & my work right now.

So, this album is my recent "go to" album - one that I can play continuously without the need to wash the ink off my hands & switch it out. 

What are you listening to these days? 

Thursday, January 1, 2015

{New Year} A new start...

Is blogging like riding a bicycle? 

I'm about to find out...

This blog has been producing nothing but the sound of crickets for the last few years. It was strange really- after blogging religiously for years, I just stopped. The blogging break started with giving myself permission to take a hiatus due to larger production demands with KLTworks. Then I ended up just filling the time. I could say that instagram filled my blogging void, but that isn't entirely true. I use instagram for a quick creative outlet, more than a way to document inspiration like I used blogging. As a small business owner (that consists of just me - no employees) & being a mom, time is spread thin anyway, but social media adds a whole new element to the game. I started to feel too accessible - almost longing for the days before computers (yes, I remember those days well).  I was also feeling a bit like I was treading water- some days more successfully than others. My business was turning into being all about production, with no time to design & create which coupled with my mom duties changing because my son was entering grade school. I've spent the last year in particular, restructuring, re-prioritizing, & re-grouping - I think I'm ready to start blogging again. I've figured a few things out. 

Next week I'm going to start teaching at the local college again- it came from an unfortunate reason, but I'm grateful for the opportunity.  I taught painting/drawing at this college for 12 years - it's where I met my husband, who teaches ceramics in the same department. I haven't taught for nearly 7 years - since a few weeks before Sayer was born actually. I'm nervous & excited to teach drawing fundamentals this quarter. I thought it would be fun to incorporate blogging again with this drawing class. I've been pinning away on my drawing/painting & installation boards, revisiting shows & books from artists that I was able to see in person during my MFA studies at SVA. It feels good to jump back to what seems like second nature - I look forward to rediscovering  & exploring it all with anyone that still reads blogs.  

So, Happy 2015! It's nice to be back... Kristin

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

{In the Studio} Polyfil & Plush

It's been a bustling studio in the last few weeks! I've never made so many thread drawing plush in such a short period of time. We've been living in a world of polyfil & boxes thanks to the KLTworks sale at last week and I'm finally emerging from the studio & trying to catch up on life. Chris took this photo Sunday at midnight, right after we finished the last plush heading to and I thought I would share. 

Hope you are all having a great week! What have you been up to?


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