Hana Lima (Hand Work)

When your livelihood and life depend on your hands and heart, and eyes, I suppose it follows that one should take good care of all of them.  This week I experienced several mishaps involving my hands, and with the week coming to a close, I found myself hobbling about trying to get work done and…

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Stop Fighting The Yes

I noticed a funny thing about how 2017 has been going for my art the other day.  Or maybe it’s not so funny and is just The Way It Is.  I started the year replenishing featherwork after Christmas sales, then moved organically into making pysanky in preparation for the spring season and Orthodox Easter, with…

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Jill Of Trades, Part 3

I’ve blogged about being a Jill of Trades (as counter to “Jack-of-All…”) before, about the burden of justifying wanting to do more than one kind of art well, and choosing to work in media that take an inordinate amount of time to create in.  This week I found myself pushing the boundaries again, developing skills…

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Evolution

A funny thing happened to me on the way to the forum this week:  I was updating a page on my website and decided I would update the subtitle on my website’s header as well.  Doing so reminded me of the evolution I am undergoing in this journey as an artist.   At about the…

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Of Teachers and Students (Part 3)

I remember sitting in a college art student auditorium listening to a talk by art critic Ted Wolff, who referred to the old George Bernard Shaw quote, “He who can, does. He who cannot, teaches.”  And to this Wolff added his own quip, “And he who can do neither becomes an art critic.” Recently I…

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Hatching The Illustrated Egg

I recently stumbled across this old, blurry Instamatic photo taken of the first four pysanky (Ukrainian batik dyed eggs) I ever made.  I originally learned how to do this in Philadelphia in the summer of 1984, and my education continued after I moved to Chicago where there was a neighborhood near mine called Ukrainian Village…

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The Princesses And The Pleasures Of Peacock

When I was in middle school (then called “intermediate” school) in Hawai’i, on some celebration days, such as May Day/Lei Day, a woman would attend who threw the school into a frenzy of preparation and activity related to her visit.  She always appeared with an entourage, an imperious presence, was led by a parade of…

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A Daily Habit Of Illustrating Life

In December I sent each of a couple of old friends whom I knew to be more gifted than me at drawing a handmade blank journal filled with sheets of drawing paper.  I was later stunned to learn that neither jumped into filling the pages with their drawings.  One said hers was “too nice,” which…

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Access A Great Featherwork Collection, In PDF Format

In the throes of my enthusiasm for hulu (Hawaiian feather) work, a few years ago I stumbled across a collection in the archives of The Kamehameha Schools, of feather artist Johanna Drew Cluney.  The collection included featherwork she had made, as well as her personal collection of Hawaiian shell lei, seed jewelry, and lauhala pāpale (hats…

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Dismantle And Begin Again

This week, Facebook fed me a photograph of some featherwork-in-progress I had posted some time ago: I was pleased that all of the pieces in it have sold, or been repurposed (dismantled, with the feathers put to use in a different piece).  For example, the yellow hat band in the photo above was completely taken…

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