Tuesday, December 22, 2009

It rained last night. And the sky was so pretty this morning, half grey and half orange at dawn.
It's chilly, which is appropriate, and windy, which is nice. Makes me want to go the beach to where the swings are, walk through the rain-soaked sand and go for a swing.

{image by michelle k.a. via make it easy}

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sad news: ID Magazine and Gourmet are folding... support the old classic magazines you love, and support the little ones that are trying to make it, like newly released At Your Leisure. Pitch Design Union also has a great list of some others worth supporting... go here.

Monday, December 21, 2009

This morning I was waiting for a large file to save and as the computer churned away, I picked up the needles and started knitting.

And then it hit me...

I've had this idea brewing for a little while, but it just didn't click until right now. I'm setting out to make a prototype.

So, stay turned... and remind me to show progress pics if I forget.

Friday, December 18, 2009

My studiomates, Bunch Design Collective, built a little stair for an architectural model of theirs.

The lonely stair was just sitting there on the shelf.

So I kidnapped it and put my miniature scale figures on it.

I sort of don't want to give the stair back now....

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Did you ever try taking a picture through a peephole?

Friday, December 11, 2009

Newly added to the list of things I want to be:

Underwater photographer.

There I said it.

You will get lost in Wayne Levin's photographs. I did.
... and so completely. I think I might even have turned into a crazy fan.

How, you ask?

Well, I e-mailed him. You must understand, I don't do things like that. I quietly LOVE people. But all of sudden I was pressing the 'send' button to an e-mail where I was confessing how much his work moved me, and that I wanted to work for him, and could I be an intern? Crazy...

But he was very gracious and we exchanged a couple of e-mails and while my inner crazy-fan-debi is at bay, it really makes me want to see his work in person. He was "invited by NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) to photograph in the remote Papahanaumokuakea Marine National Monument (Northwestern Hawaiian Islands) this past August. A major exhibition of this work will open in July 2010 at the Contemporary Museum at the First Hawaiian Center in Honolulu."

So if you are lucky enough to go this show, I expect an e-mail from you telling me all about it. Got it? :)

{via yay!everyday}

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

I've got two new little baby beasts in the shop... Delilah and Knut.

I did a lot of knitting in Montreal. Well... to be fair I did a lot knitting on the airplane to and from Montreal.

I will show you those soon.

{update: Knut has been adpoted)

Thursday, December 3, 2009

I am going to one of my favorite places tomorrow: Canada.
I spent a lot of years as a kid/teenager in Vancouver though I haven't been back in a long time. That will be another trip. This time I'm meeting up with R in Montreal, a city I've been to only in the Spring.

While Los Angeles is going through its own version of a cold snap, I'm excited to experience real cold again. Of course I am ill prepared and some extremity will suffer, but I'm only there for 4 days, so I'll just make do.

A wish list for while I am in Montreal:

1. to conjugate my verbs correctly... my French is getting rusty. But I can't wait to be surrounded by another language. R has never heard me speak French to another person, so I might get a little shy.

2. for it to snow on my birthday... I know the chance is slim, but fingers and toes are crossed.

3. that my body, in trying to keep itself warm for lack of a good winter coat, will metabolize all the pastries I eat faster than ever and that I come home thinner than when I left :)

4. go ice skating... this one might be a little hard as I hear it's not as cold as usual and no outdoor rinks are frozen. That's fine, I can cope... I'll take whatever indoor rink I can get, but I must skate. I say that like I'm good at it or something, but I'm not. I've only gone skating maybe 5 times and I just generally fall over, but I love it. When I was nine years old I remember telling my friends in South Africa that my family was moving to Canada. I remember two very distinct things from that conversation: 1. that I would have to start pronouncing tomato differently, and 2. that I would get to go ice skating all the time. A nine-year old mind is a wonderful thing... when in Canada, one must skate. And so I will.

{image via alexicaro)

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update: I did an OK job at conjugation, it did snow on my birthday, but, alas, I did not skate.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Didn't know how badly I wanted an axe until now.
Or seven axes.

You can't just have one of these, right? I'm a sucker for the olive green hot pink combo, but really I think I would need one of each.... Just like this, hanging on the wall.

Best Made Company
... I love you.
via Made in England, though don't be fooled, the axe is made in NYC

{My mother asked me today what I wanted for my upcoming birthday... should I tell her I want an axe? Will there be silence on the other end of the phone? I'm not sure it's something a mother wants to hear from her daughter. I could be wrong.}

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Celebrating the Thanksgiving holiday is not quite in my blood, but I happily participate and am very skilled at eating all sorts of pie and side dishes that accompany the famous turkey. I admit that a good cranberry sauce is one of my favorite things and I have been known to eat it plain, by the spoonful. I offer no apologies.

This year, we decided to go camping. Not only did that sound like a fantastic idea to get away from the hustle and bustle of the shopping frenzy that is about to ensue, but also the challenge of trying to make a Thanksgiving meal on a camping stove and fire was something I could not resist. If you know me, you know I am not kidding.

The one big surprise of the trip, and something I can say I am very thankful for is the Mojave National Preserve. We're avid Joshua Tree National Park campers, and being only 2 hours from Los Angeles, we headed straight there thinking, erroneously, who would want to camp on Thanksgiving and have to cook a big turkey out in the wilderness? Everyone and their entire families apparently. And us.

I love Joshua Tree... but it gets busy. It is so beautiful that you can't really blame the hords of people that flock to it, but I secretly wish no one knew about it but me.... I know it's good to share, but the wilderness and truly quiet space is so precious, it gets hard. I tend to get selfish with my wilderness, be warned.

Anyway, as luck would have it, the Mojave National Preserve is only a hour or so away from Joshua Tree. We've driven through it many times, but never camped. And so, driving away from the overpopulated JT with our tails between our legs, feeling all sad with the assumption that we were 'settling' for the preserve, imagine the surprise, the happiness and sense of wonder when we realized that a whole new world was before us. I'm surprised that the Mojave National Preserve is not a National Park... it's stunning. Maybe that's a good thing, less people, less bureaucracy, etc., ... but seriously, this is one place we're coming back to.... again and again.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Dear Blog,
I'm heading out to sea for a few days.
And then we're off to the desert to dry out.
It might even be December when I will see you again.
Keep out of trouble while I'm gone.
Love, Debi

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Introducing Marion, my first jellyfish.

Trying to stock up the little shop for the holidays... slowly but surely.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

I love Royal Buffet's garlands.

Very quiet and still....

Monday, November 16, 2009

I promised myself that I would not talk too much about diving on this blog. In fact I contemplated starting another one just so that I could chronicle my new obsession and leave this one alone... happy in its curated world of architecture, ceramics, graphics and yarn, or for lack of a better word, land stuff.

But today, dear friends, beware... there is cross-over.

I just couldn't help myself with my growing sea urchin menagerie. Yesterday I was lucky enough to go diving and was able to add a few to the collection. And when I laid them out this morning, I just couldn't resist taking photos.

The natural world is astounding. Speaking of, have you seen this incredible footage of a pair of sea dragons?

Friday, November 13, 2009

You know it's going to be a nice day when you open up the cupboard and you see something you see everyday but it's as if it's for the first time.

I love our dishes. I love that they are mismatched but complimentary. I love that R chooses colors I might not choose and it just works. I love having opened up the cupboard this morning and being surprised at how lovely it all looked. I suppose I usually just reach for a coffee cup, half blind from sleep and I do not notice?

So anyway.... yes, I think it will be a nice day. I am, however, getting sick. I can feel it in my ears and my throat. But I still contend it will be a nice day: R is coming back from Montreal this afternoon and I get to eat my soup out of some lovely bowls, drink ginger tea, and probably watch a lot of movies... a sure cure for the common cold.

A good weekend to you all.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Stunning colors... cutting flowers by Janne Peters.
Oddly, they make me think of winter.

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On another note, I want to say a big thank you to all the people who have been leaving such lovely comments lately... it's hard to keep up, so please forgive the mass thank you.

And also, new readers, thanks for introducing yourselves to me... nice to meet you :)

These flowers are for all of you...

Monday, November 9, 2009

We arrived in Flagstaff on Friday afternoon. Since then it's been all about good food, lots of work, some wine, and some more work.

There is still a lot of work to do, so this morning's breakfast was simple and a quick collection of leaves & co. seemed appropriate before our departure tomorrow early morning.

I didn't get to spend as much time outdoors as I would have liked... but after all it was a work-weekend. I can't complain much though, Flagstaff is beautiful; a perfect respite from downtown Los Angeles. The air is so clean and crisp, it's just nice to breath.

CG is building a house here and being on a construction site again is reinvigorating. I'm hoping there will be more trips up here as the house progresses.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

As a freelancer, there's a constant effort to not let work take over life. Work is sneaky; it creeps into your evenings and weekends, and while it's something you may love, it's still work. Work is too often an excuse I use for not being able to do things...like impromptu weekends away.

Having said that, and even though it makes no real sense given the coming week and all the deadlines, my studio mate CG and I are getting in the car and driving to Flagstaff tomorrow.

The irony is that it'll be a work weekend... but we're shaking it up, and giving Work a run for it's money. It's going to have to keep up with us this time.

{image via here... found on English Muse}

Monday, November 2, 2009

I feel like going on a voyage.

A long slow trip to somewhere cold.

To a little solitary house where I can make hot drinks and walk around in thick socks all day.

{image by lynann}

Thursday, October 29, 2009

I finished making Jean-François and realized he bore a striking resemblance to another New Recycle, Émile.

So I've relisted Émile along with Jean-François, because at this point they are best buds, inseparable.

{update: sold}

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

It's growing...I added to the collection some things I found on the sidewalk this morning and few more things I found in my drawers.

I like my new bear friend.

The wind blew so ferociously last night. The streets are littered with palm fronds, pine needles, eucalyptus leaves and seed pods.

Makes for good treasure hunting.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Some things within arm's reach... made into a wee collection. Nothing special, just little bits and bobs.

I love that the acorn has nostrils, though you might have to click on the image to see them a little larger.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Yesterday evening the temperature was perfect. There was a lovely warm wind that churned the oak leaves on the driveway and through the garden. We turned on the little lights, cooked outside and watched it grow darker. Despite these warm temperatures you can tell when the Los Angeles summer is near it's end... the winds pick up, the skies clear up and the moutains suddenly come into crisp focus. It's perhaps the best time of year.

Friday, October 23, 2009

I think it must have been incredible to have seen this in person.

The Berlin Reunion by Royal de Luxe.... see a video here.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

I didn't realize it but a bean was left in the sink drain for a day or two under the plug, and when I finally realized and pulled it out, it was full of life.

I remember in school, maybe Grade 1 or 2, when we had to cultivate plants that we germinated from various seeds. I can't tell you how many beans I sprouted in between two pieces of wet cotton wool on a little saucer in the window of my bedroom. Not only is the process of growing this little bean nostalgic, but to have found this little guy sprouting on his own in the sink without sunlight is amazing!

It reminded me of a image I saw a while back on flickr by olivelife... plants in an ice tray. Genius.

I think my little bean is destined for a similar future, along with a few other beans and seeds I've got going on the side.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Ladies and Gentlemen....

May I introduce Ramon. The newest member of the family.

{finally something produced from my often-neglected knitting life. It feels good...}

{psst... update: sold}

Thursday, October 8, 2009

I've moved my desk in the studio. Now I sit downstairs. I like my rearrangement very much, but I have this sad little face looking back at me.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

This past weekend I think I baked the craziest cake I've ever made.

It stood 14 inches tall. Can't wait to make another one... so much fun.

Friday, October 2, 2009

This week was busy visiting a few fabricators for some upcoming projects. I love going to places where things get made. I'm definitely a "behind the scenes" kind of person...

{psst... I cheated a little with these photos... and used this application}

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

I am certainly liking the work of Lizzy Stewart.

She likes bears, as do I... but R likes them even more.
We have a lovely local bear that comes down the mountain sometimes. He likes to get in the garbage cans at night, and then we don't like him as much. If he helped us clean up the mess in the mornings, and had a quick sit down, perhaps a cup of coffee, all would be forgiven.

Nevertheless, I think this bear of Lizzy's is perfect.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Just when I was getting really good at not wanting everything, I came across Baden Baden.

So it's now back to square one with the 'not wanting.'


{via piou, another blog to love}

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Note to self... not necessarily a sentence... or even to taken literally, but little hints, or nudges if you will:

eat = cook more: make food, don't buy it. don't eat at your desk.

swim = don't pass up an opportunity to get in the water

see = pay attention to the world around you... look at things, take your time.

cactus = get your hands dirty, make planted environments

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

I am working from home today. The little cabin we live in is small. If I turn around this is what I see. Living in a small space is hard, but it's also refreshing. You tend to shed what you don't need.

R is good at keeping the place not very cluttered; if I had my way with this spice shelf it might not make a pretty picture.

Monday, September 21, 2009

I am lucky enough have a fairly large wall by my desk (about 7 feet) on which to pin up ideas that inspire me. Right now this 1 foot section of wall does the trick. I almost don't need more.

Sometimes my 'inspiration' wall gets so thick with ideas I can't see the ideas anymore. For me, this is a good place to focus and a reminder to simplify.

I am riding high today, newly refreshed by these 12 inches.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

I have to admit that I've been feeling completely uninspired these last few weeks, not quite bored of my work and my asethetic, but something very close to that. Unsatisfied? It's time for a change but I have no clue in which direction to start off.

I've been bombarding myself with as many images and words as I can to try to jump start something in my creative brain, nothing has quite stuck. It's just been a constant stream of colors, and shapes and textures, but everything's been feeling rather flat.

This morning, finally, I think I stumbled onto something...

It began by looking at Home: Where they Create, a visual document of people's creative environments by Paul Barbera (found via hello sandwich). And of course, given how magnetic these work/live spaces are I drifted off through the links and arrived at ijm's string gardens.

A sigh of relief... it reminds me that I've been wanting to get my hands dirty. I'm not sure how yet, but I want the remnants of a day's work under my fingernails. I've been saying I want to ditch the old computer for a while now, maybe it's time?

{wish I was in Amsterdam, ijm had an open house this weekend!}

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Having just come home from vacation, I'm of two minds about this statement. I suppose three-quarters of the time this is true. The other quarter of the time, it's really wonderful not to be busy and to just sit on your butt and think about how very un-busy you really are.

That said, I'm back to the three-quarter life and I'm about to get very busy, and not the good kind of busy. Crazy busy. The light at the end of the tunnel is an October camping trip to Death Valley.

{image via Yay!Everyday, by Jamie Tao}

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

A long overdue post about my growing ceramic cityscape, by Susan Dwyer of up in the air somewhere. I still need to buy the third factory vessel, but thus far have collected two of them and they happily co-exist on my desk with my water silo, also by Susan.

And if you read this blog often you know how much I love her work. So lucky for me, I also received one of her stunning little gold-lipped dishes, which.... let me tell you, makes me melt. I love the handmade quality of everything; I love that the lids fit "just so" and the lines are not quite straight. You can see the wonderful markings of process, but it's so clean and crisp. After I get the remaining building, I have my heart set on these. Cups dipped in rubber.

I actually can't talk about it anymore for fear of impulsively purchasing them all right this second ... patience, Debi.... patience.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

I think spending time underwater could make you a really good textile designer. Endless inspiration.

{images by Jeff Bozanic}

Thursday, September 10, 2009

I suppose I should admit I am back from holidays... back from my diving trip to Fiji.

On the first day I found the first letters for my coral alphabet. There were millions of bits of coral on the beach and throughout the week the alphabet slowly filled itself in. I didn't want to assemble letter forms out of parts of coral. I wanted single pieces. As you can imagine, finding some of the letters was difficult. The S is the only one that isn't a single piece of coral.

I had help from some really lovely kids who were on our trip. They would come to me with options for letters I already had, or were able to find ones I was unable to find myself. One day, while we were all getting off the boats and arriving back at the resort after a day out diving, J.A. came running down to the beach with two pieces in his hand, shouting that he had found the X and the Z. Ah, those little letter-hunters! I miss them.

And of course I left the task of photographing the alphabet to the very last minute, with a crinkly damp piece of paper as my backdrop right before we left the resort. I also left all the letter forms there on the table outside our room, along with all the little shells, seed pods and other bits we found on the beach and in the water.... I miss them too.

{p.s. click on the image for a larger view.... note to self: must sort out how to post larger images}

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

well... not exactly. But very soon.

Saying farewell to the blog a little early... and who knows, maybe I'll have internet access where I am going, but I'm kind of wishing I don't.

Happy end of August to you all, see you in Septem-ber.

Friday, August 21, 2009

I've been doing a little house sitting lately. Nice to be in new surroundings and pretend.

My temporary pretend life has the following features:
- a nice view of the Silver Lake reservoir
- two sweet dogs
- a reminder to be calm

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Came across these lovely posters on ffffound... the negative space is like a breath of fresh air.

{images from here, and here}

p.s. it's R's birthday today.... hip hip hooray!

Monday, August 17, 2009

One of my studio mates just came back after a trip to Seattle with word of stunning ceramics found at {far 4}. The artist is Yusuke Aida and they look incredible. They are not painted, they're constructed from colored clay.

I'm secretly wishing that she buys some so that I can drink out of them. I think the drink will surely taste sweeter.

{images via far 4}

Friday, August 14, 2009

Yesterday: San Pedro, California 5:30 a.m.
Just leaving the docks for our first open water dive.

Happy to report that I am alive and well, having survived and enjoyed what I had previously considered one of my greatest fears: the ocean.

Don't get me wrong, I think I still have a healthy fear of the ocean and things that live in it, but I'm no longer paralyzed by it. And actually I find being underwater, moving with the currents, quite calming.

Can't wait to go back down.