Happy Solstice!

So far, winter has seemed to signal a long time between blahgs; partially that’s due to my involvement in more un-blog-able situations.  At one point during the past week, I was thinking further about the new-life goals, and decided that one excellent thing to shoot for would be to regain a life in which no subject was restricted except by my own choice. It’s coming closer, at least.  But, right now, I’m experiencing some things that are utterly new to me. They’ve required soul-searching.  It’s not easy, but it is good, very good: solid. I am becoming stronger.

A lot of writing went on, with much more on my plate for the next few weeks, and some organizing, resolving two more of the most disastrous rooms in the house. But, I’ve spent the past few days working in both of my studios, making a small, intricate piece that’s simultaneously a retracing of steps and a furthering. I tucked the sketches I’d made last week away, to save for another time, and went back to the book form. I made one conscious decision before beginning: to use up all of certain batches of fiber left from other recent explorations, and then I let it flow.  It’s been a long, long time since I’ve had the freedom to just let some work happen intuitively, without hinging expectations onto it, without worrying about the time spent as too fleeting: it was wonderful.  I used dyed kozo and daylily, both pulped and unpulped, and added some recycled abaca in with the pulped fibers; I even did some pulp-painting-ish patterning stuff with some of the daylily. Then, after the paper air-dried, I moved upstairs to the bindery, sewing onto double cords, coming up with a center-bead endband-like component. While I worked, I was thinking of midpoints, of solstice, of a glass half-full, pouring endlessly but never depleting… and unashamedly reveling in all the textures simply for what they are: succulent.

Speaking of textures: Velma has joined the blogosphere!  It’s lovely to be able to see what she’s working with, working on, and what she’s working from.  It’s also lovely to be living in this time of blogs and facebook and such: I’ve never met Velma in person, but met her through the blog, which she came to from another friend’s blog…and we’ve been corresponding off and on for awhile now, finding many surprising things in common.

Closeup of the kozo ‘endpapers‘.

Tomorrow, out and about; Tuesday, some sort of mandatory workshop at the unemployment office and some shopping; Wednesday and Thursday, back in the studios, wrapping up some holiday gifts (and then literally wrapping them up).

That 3am window is a tad more elaborate this year…

4 thoughts on “Solstice

  1. love love love what you’ve been working on! and know you will figure out something that works for you even tho it will take a while to sort out. i love that you and velma both blogged about solstice; i was just telling ben about it in the car in montreal. wohoo!

  2. I like the kozo “endpapers” is the woven kind of texture the nature of it or is it how you process it or something to you do to it?

    • (Thanks, everyone).

      Jo, it’s all three: it is the nature of the fiber, but it’s enhanced a bit by a short dying time and by manipulating it to reveal that nature…

  3. fun, melissa! it feels like girlfriendartist time. i was reading about your recent work and saw the new binding and was hopping out of my chair because of it’s amazingness, and then you mentioned me. it all seemed so connected. solstice has more and more meaning the norther we are. i like where you’re going!!! and in about two weeks we will really notice more daylight.

    happy solstice. amazing milky way tonight.

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