Thursday, December 31, 2009

pioneer (illustration friday)

(unfortunately, because my scanner is so small, i couldn't scan the entire image for you... hopefully, i'll have a new scanner by the weekend. and can rescan/upload again... or feel free to donate your old yet operating scanner to me! ;))

usually, i think "outside the box" when i get a prompt like pioneer. i didn't want to draw the archetypal westward bound american pioneer.

at first i saw images of lone figures in desperate landscapes... but i wasn't really inspired... then, i considered illustrating some pioneering fashion like issey miyake or thierry mugler or some harajuku or steampunk fashion... still nothing came to me...

so, i went back to the idea of the frontiersmen, the gold rush pan handlers, the chuck wagons and cowboys... one of my prized books in my fashion/costume book collection is "what people wore - a visual history of dress" by douglas gorsline. often the fashion history books give only what was trendy/fashionable from the time period, not necessarily what was worn everyday. gorsline's book on the other hand, illustrates a large cross section of the everyday clothes worn by different economic/social classes from ancient times until the early 1920s.

among the the characters depicted in the frontier/plains sections of the book were the outlaws and amongst them were some infamous ladies - Rose Dunn aka Rose of the Cimarron, Martha Jane Canary-Burke aka Calamity Jane and Pearl Hart.

i wondered what the childhoods of those three ladies were like and what if anything from their pasts informed the choices they made later in life...

i also wonder (a lot) about my own children and their future... and what, if anything, might make them turn into notorious outlaws... especially since they often perpetrate crimes and misdemeanors ending in multiple time outs already... but that's a whole other post for another day...

anyhoo... there it is... my truncated, unfinished (i still plan on coloring and shading in) and somewhat disturbing immortalization to some pioneering "bad girls".

and btw - best wishes for a happy new years eve, everyone! and a bright, peaceful and inspiring 2010!

Thursday, December 24, 2009

happy holidays!!!

just wanted to send out my best heartfelt wishes for a peaceful, relaxing, bright healthy and happy holiday season, and the same for the coming year! thank you so much for coming here to read my ramblings and for leaving comments. you help me to keep writing and continually challenge/inspire my creative process! :)

re: the basket of toys above:

almost every year, my (very large) family says that we won't exchange christmas presents... that we'll be "allowed" to buy a $15 secret santa present... and then, every year, everyone (exept me - i play by the rules. sometimes...) still goes and buys everyone else a present.

this year, i didn't buy a secret santa present. partly, because our funds were very low. but in the event that my family still ends up overbuying... i made a buch of bears for the kids in the family. (the pattern can be found in the book Toys to Sew by designer Claire Garland). For the adults, i made a banana/walnut/cherry bread and a compilation cd of swing/jazz/big band christmas music.

anyhoo... i have a few more bears and breads to make... and presents to wrap... and even the last handful of holiday cards to address and post... children to mind, feed, care for, clean and dress for the aforementioned family party... and i haven't even showered myself yet...

ah, the holidays - they don't kill you, they make you stronger... :)

Thursday, December 17, 2009

my kingdom for a set of size 4 needles...

i just made "megan's ruffled neck warmer" designed by megan b. wright. unfortunately, i had to use a set of size 7s - as they're the smallest straight needles i have... so, the scarf itself is not nearly as dense as i would like... very noodle-y... the ruffle however, still billows and undulates... it's entertaining...

so, i will have to cave and buy yet another set of needles... and make another. shucky darn! :) the pattern is from 101 designer one-skein wonders edited by judith durant.

i've been very good about NOT buying armfuls of yarn for no reason as of late... although, i am guilty of bringing home an itty-bitty-yarny-clearance-binny-somethin'-somethin'... to add to my growing collection of random string... lying in wait... like dust bunnies... in this drawer, that bag, and this other box, etc... and i also have orphaned vintage buttons that are just crying out to be used on something like this...

kismet, no?

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

yes, virginia, you CAN wear a miniskirt in a blizzard...

so, it took me a couple of years (no joke)... but i finally finished these warm and toasty legwarmers... just in time for our first blizzard of the year... :)

they were super easy to make... but for whatever reason (two children, house foreclosure, moving stress) i couldn't get myself motivated to finish the second leg warmer after i zipped thru the first one...

i used 4 skeins of filatura di crosa malizioso yarn, bought from my friend carol's shop - my sisters' knits. i cast on 56 stitches, divided evenly among 3 needles. i used 4 size 8 DPNs. (then, i should've placed a marker for the beginning of the round but i didn't. my bad.) then, i just knitted a rib - K2, P2 - for 24" and bound off.

Monday, December 07, 2009

happy 4th birthday, porkchop!

i don't know how you do it, buddy... but, you amaze me with every passing day... i love you, little man! happy happy birthday!!

and with respect to the men and women who were lost on pearl harbor day:

thinking of you too, grandpa dallas, flying loop de loops up there in heaven! :)

Sunday, December 06, 2009

crunchy (illustration friday)

when i first thought of "crunchy" i thought of snow... and after a few failed and uninspired attempts at drawing that... i thought of a zombie eating a bowl of bones... another idea that also failed to materialize...

and then, i actually heard a "crunching" sound and found my son eating a lollipop. and that reminded me of this:

so, i put my son in glasses, an owl hat and a graduation cap eating an orange tootsie pop. :) he kinda looks like harry potter though... not quite what i was going for.

Thursday, December 03, 2009


my first (pen/ink on bristol) contribution to:

...the first thing that came to mind when i read "entangled" was knitting when my hair was still long - past my waist. it often tangled up in my knitting, but i didn't mind, it made the scarf or hat even more a part of me...

fer sh*ts & giggles... here it is in negative:

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

at one time, i owned three strollers... true story.

i love this quote:

" much as the magazines make motherhood look pretty, and it often is awesome, it's also fucking hard, and we're tired, and we get slammed both for working and for not working, for paying both too much and too little attention to our children. And for all the relentless, glaring focus on individual mothers and their "choices," someone -- just ask MomsRising -- forgot to figure out a way to give our families paid leave and affordable health and child care, to which yes, mothers in the United States should be entitled. We're not saying we deserve a seat more than you do. But we would like to raise our children in a culture that is more generous to everyone..."

from this article by lynn harris.

my filipino parents were awesome

just an fyi - i have a new post up at filipina moms blog - my filipino parents were awesome.

Tuesday, December 01, 2009


i've been listening to aimee mann's "@#%&*! Smilers" and her song, phoenix, has been on my mind a lot... sometimes, i actually skip it... so i think maybe it's just a sign for me to write it... out? off? away?

anyway, the lyrics remind me (and probably everyone else) of a former flame - mine was a fine, young man from arizona. we were together for a few years... here in chicago and later, in san francisco. (BTM - before thin man.)

we met as mutual friends/parts of an artsy circle from college - film folks who worked with costume folks who talked shop with fashion design folks, etc... we drank. we dated. we threw caution to the wind and moved in together too fast...

but, i firmly believe we really and truly loved. i have such lovely memories of reading books together under blankets and hats in our apartment with no working heater... collaborating on work - my words/poetry, my body swipe, even the apartment made appearances in his short ambient films... al fresco picnics on blankets... a lot of sunny laughter and music... even the dark days when there was a small death... with day after night of regret and despair.... contemplating marriage and babies and cats... so much discovery and wonder and heavy thinking... and saying i love you and meaning it...

i moved to san francisco first... for work. there was even a teary "frank capraesque" see ya later at a train station platform and everything...

and our plan was for him to come out when he graduated.... which he did. and then a few months later, he decided to move to los angeles... for work. there was a teary goodbye... and then he actually came back after only a few minutes away, crying... saying he couldn't leave... it was very cameron crowe... it was hard for me to let go too.

but i got him to leave and then, we blundered our way thru a breakup... slowly... and over a handful of awkward long distance phonecalls...

and this is where aimee mann reminds me:

"i don't want to abandon you,
but baby i've had my fill....

and if you get the chance again...
i know you'd do the best you can.
but baby love doesn't change anything at all.
i know love doesn't change a thing"

'cause what neither of us was ready to accept, even though it was painfully evident - was that we were over. that we were headed in different directions. that the love was still there, but love wasn't going to change where our lives were taking us...

looking back now, i'm glad we met. and loved. and lost each other at last.


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