As the Fourth Street Festival on Labor Day approaches my days are jam packed. I’m moving art pieces toward completion and stomping out the organizational fires that inevitably arise as the show nears. In the world of art composition, I still have bikes on my mind. Last week it was the “Meet me by the Willow” piece, and that got me thinking about bicycle wheels. I needed some materials, so I took my family to the ‘Junk in the Trunk' community yard sale at Bryan Park. There I found some useful bangles that immediately became bicycle rims. To make wheels of different sizes I used wire I brought home from Grandpa’s pole barn (thanks again, Grandpa!). Wheels of all sizes ended up floating over the B-line trail in my mind, so the background of my latest weaving ended up forming a meandering trail using recycled yarns. I like the idea of the wheels of bikes, unlike cars, treading lightly over the path without leaving a strong impact on the world. All the elements came together in a piece I’m calling “Biking the B-line.” As I finished the piece I couldn’t help thinking that the design would make a really cool T-shirt. That got the ball rolling on a whole new project that I really don’t have the time for right now - but of course I started anyway! I asked my photographer Tom Bertolacini take pictures of all my latest weavings, including the B-line piece. I dropped the image file into Photoshop, played with the filters a little and added some graphics, and out popped a nice T-shirt design. I contacted my friend Janis, a freelancer for a local printing company, X-Printware, who is my contact for printing the T-shirts for the Fourth Street Festival. To make a long story short, I’m on track to make a first run of kiwi-colored T-shirts that I think will appeal to the Bloomington audience on many levels. It’s got art, biking, local design and printing, and it commemorates the opening of the B-line trail. Because the T-shirt is a reproduction of my art I feel justified in selling them at my booth, plus I’ll try to stock them at a few stores in town. I’m really excited about this new art and business venture.
The whole concept of the importance of bikes as a viable transportation alternative in town is big on my brain too. Of course that means I want to make another bike piece. This time I’ll make a bike floating on top of rusted car parts in the soil. I already have a good collection of rusty car scraps from my family trip to Michigan, as well as from a trip with the boys to the local junkyard and of course, I have PLENTY of rust coloured yarn! I’m really hoping the piece comes together by Fourth Street. I’m well on my way, so as long as nothing dramatic pops up that concerns running the show I think I’ll make it. You’ll just have to stop by my booth to see all my latest art - and pick up a T-shirt!
In between art there’s still a ton going on. I put down my needle felting long enough to watch my boys test for their brown belts in Taekwondo on Friday evening. They had a great test along with a bunch of excellent, more senior students. Friday was Tommie’s birthday, too, although we couldn’t celebrate much beyond ice cream after the test. We had flatbread for a birthday dinner Saturday, which followed an absolutely glorious afternoon at the Binford school field. The boys, along with friends Claire and Lara, spent several hours chasing, catching and ultimately releasing butterflies. They caught all the buckeyes they could ever want, plus a few monarchs, swallowtails and a few other species. I needle felted and supplied the water and snacks in between screeches and sprints after butterflies. I also was the beast of burden for the nets and soft cloth containment devices. We passed an older gentleman on the way home who smiled knowingly at me. I told him the pack mule always travels in the back of the caravan. I came home to a delightful dinner with a nice bottle of wine—how could I better spend a Saturday afternoon. Today, both boys team-celebrated summer birthdays by having friends for a movie with kettle corn from the farmer’s market. I had a couple of quiet hours while they watched Pirates of the Caribbean, then I dished out cake and ice cream to wind them back up. They were too full for dinner so they traveled to Bryan Park to play some soccer. That meant a little more evening weaving time for me. I’m telling you, my days are just packed!
Until next week…