Sunday, February 6, 2011

The ice storm cometh.

Did I say something about linking five straight school days together? That’s not what happened this week. The great ice storm of ’11 started on Monday night and locked out school until Friday. Fortunately Jim is from Michigan, and nothing will stop a Michigan boy from accomplishing his mission. The roads were cleared well enough by Tuesday night that we ventured out to see Blue Man Group at the IU Auditorium. I thought that they were great—a cross between Cirque du Soleil and the old Saturday Night Live. You just didn’t know what they were going to do next. I just love drumming and percussion, and they pounded out a blue streak. On the way home, Jacob wished for the power to go out so we could have some family time, and boy did he ever get his wish! The snowstorm of Monday night turned into the ice storm of Tuesday night, and the combination of high winds and iced trees took out the power for thousands in Monroe County. We readied the candles, flashlights and hand-crank radio and went to bed.

We woke to a cold house Wednesday. We did our best to get by with no heat, lights, or internet connection. It was enjoyable to sit in front of the roaring fire that consumed much of a fallen big apple branch from the back yard and listen as the IU basketball team beat the Golden Gophers of Minnesota. Nobody wanted to get into the frigid beds that night, but luckily, later that night the power came back on! We woke to a partially heated house and resumed our routine, albeit without school. They did manage to hold a second day of school for the week on Friday, so I guess they deserve a little credit.

Sandwiched around trying to stay warm (I don’t do cold well) I did manage to get some art done. My most important accomplishment occurred when my patrons for the two large commission pieces came by to approve the second colored sketch—and they did! It will be called ‘Ratatouille’. I launched into the project by re-warping my big loom, this time with a deep red warp. I started creating some of the fleece colors I will need to create the giant tomato, zucchini and onion slices. Luckily, my nude models are all organic, and they come in little piles in the produce section of Bloomingfoods. To create the zucchini skin, I pulled out my deep green and speckly highlighed fleeces and fed my new drum carder. I’m ready to launch into the second big piece. I’m getting a little ahead of myself, though, because I still need to make a giant gardener’s hand to pluck the giant carrot in the first big piece. But it’s all coming together!

In other news, Lee Hadley wrote a delightful piece about my work in the Home and Lifestyles magazine of the Herald Times. I really like his writing style—it’s concise and the verbs really bring the piece to life. He should write more! You can check out the story and the wonderful pictures at the H & L site. The accompanying photos are very flattering, taken by Pete Scheiner, who spent a morning capturing my studio. My son Jacob wanted to have a picture taken in his bedroom with his hamster, Shadow, which Pete graciously did. That turned into our family photo! And everybody looks nice—I really like it. The pictures also show off my new physique, now that I’ve lost 21 pounds—hooray! Thanks Liz and Cera at Bloomzum(ba).

The week culminated in a date this afternoon with my sweetie pie. We went to see the play ‘Kissing Frogs’. It’s a collaborative effort between the Bloomington Playwrights Project and IU Theatre. It was such fun! The staging, music and choreography were creative and professional. We recognized several of the actors from ‘Rent’—they are incredibly talented. The BPP setting allows a much more intimate experience than the traditional, larger venues in town. I’m so glad that Chad is in charge. He’s just doing many fabulous things there, and it’s exciting to witness the rebirth of the Project. Now I’m really excited about doing a commission for them, but it has to wait until I can complete the big commissions in progress. Could we just have school for a whole week? And maybe a pie?

Until next week…

Martina Celerin

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