In Residence


Paul admired my outfit so much that he thought you should see it too:  long underwear, two shirts, hooded sweatshirt, plastic apron, padded vest, baggy green polarfleece sweatpants, and tartan wellies, and properly shrunken test sheets.

Now, post-holidaze, I’ve been working on my own work, at last. I’d re-beaten the fiber (that I found to have been underbeaten in August while I was at Jentel) around Thanksgiving, and then had no more time to even think about it till now.  That’s the teaching life. However, I’d stored the bucket o’ pulp just inside the back door of the basement, and that’s a cool enough spot to keep it refrigerated and fresh; it was.  No stank at all.



On the first, I finished clearing up the studio, which was still partially packed from Jentel (that’s also the teaching life), set up for papermaking, and made test sheets.  I had, at last, the right shrinkage, so I finished making the final cover sheets for (S)Edition yesterday, while still getting out to the woods and still getting some work done on various apps each day.  Today, I’ll continue to reconfigure my bindery/ clean studio so that it can receive the furniture from my old school office, which we’ll move on Monday, while the cover sheets dry.  My goal is to have all the production finished (dyeing, casting and embellishing the covers, casting the remaining stems, and beating the fiber for and making the rest of the final text sheets), and to get the new improved bindery set up by the time the semester starts.  Then, I’ll be able to assemble the final books in the warm bindery space a few at a time during the early part of the semester. That’s my plan (along with all the apps, syllabae, etc.)…it does seem do-able, even with a few parties thrown in.



My studios at home are small and cramped, and I need to spend a lot of extra time reconfiguring them for each task, each phase of any given project.  But they do work for me, more efficiently all the time, though I think longingly of all the residency studios, and back to the days of 3,000 square feet in Cleveland the entire time I work in them. 

A friend told me how lucky I was to have them…and that made me wonder: is it luck if it’s by design? I can’t live without studios, so I make damn sure I have them; I give up a lot to equip them and to have time to work.  Is that luck? Or determination?

In any case, it’s good to be reminded that I can effectively be in residence in my residence.  (Will somebody hit me over the head with that fact when it gets rough during the coming semester, please?  Thanks).