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Irish Rose Art - Art, Music, Photos and Musings on Nature, Beauty, Things I See and Enjoy

All Photos and Art Work Copyright Sharon Gunn McMahon

Friday, July 23, 2010

Book Fairy Project

After I left the book, we had a family picnic.  We met at a park and had supper.

As we loaded up and headed for home, I began to have raindrops on the windshield.  I had left the book 2 hours ago, but the brown paper would not protect it from the rain.  On the way home, I stopped and asked Younger Daughter to dash up the trail in her young fast way and check on the book.  (I also asked her to see if Mr. Bluebird was still hanging out, and to take a picture of him if she could - he had been too fast for me.)

She went up the steep hill and disappeared.  I waited.  And waited.  And waited.

Younger Daughter is tall and slim and extremely quick-moving.  Not hyper (unless on Pepsi), just quick.

So I began to wonder - did she walk home?  Was she thinking I was just dropping her off and would see her back at the house... then as I was entering her name to text her, I saw her moseying - yes, moseying slowly back down the trail, talking on her phone, holding the camera in her hand, and - with the book tucked under her arm.  Good thing we checked!

She got in the car and we looked it over.  A couple of raindrops had smeared the wording a TINY bit, and someone had actually torn the edge of the wrapping enough to peek inside and see that it was a Book... and they had left it!

I felt deflated and sad- this book had been left for them but they missed their chance... Now I will have to find another day, another serendipitous moment, and another Auspicious Location for the book... my tenure as Book Fairy continues.


I am a Book Fairy!

I follow and enjoy a blog (well, several, but this is one of my favorite) by Christine Mason Miller.  She wrote a book called "Ordinary Sparkling Moments" and has created the job of "Book Fairy" in which people are given a book and go about the job of leaving them in various places all over the world.  She calls this the "100 Book Project" because she is giving away 100 books... well, anyway, the book is wrapped in a brown paper bag and then the front has written on it "this is a gift for you - Yes, You."  The person who finds this book (hopefully) is the person who "needs" it at the moment.  It is quite serendipitous and actually quite exciting in my mind.  I am just really jazzed about doing this.

I got the book a while ago and tried to leave it in one of MY most inspiring places.  There is a trail that goes behind our street.  On this trail there are some areas with benches for "resting" or "viewing" as I prefer to call it ;-).  Actually the trail is very steep in some points, so I do a lot of "viewing" while panting/catching my breath.  This one viewing area has an almost-360-degree-view and is a great source of inspiration for me.  I have done quite a lot of thinking there! I have never been disturbed while "viewing" and thinking, but I have seen many people on the trail, so I thought it would be a perfect spot to leave the "Gift" - and I thought another thinker would come and think and see the book, take it and be totally thrilled with it... I felt inspired.  I needed to do it "now - today" and so off I went...

Touched by Angels

So as I finished up Magpies, I knew in the back of my head that the Hoffman-Sulky Challenge deadline was coming up.  I knew that both the Rocky Mountain Quilt Festival and the Hoffman Challenge had due dates of July 23. I KNEW this... and yet... and yet I couldn't seem to set Magpies aside to start on the Hoffman project.

I had the fabric - I had ordered it online months ago (tho so late that local quilt shops were out of it already).  I had been looking at it, imagining the project complete, and thinking about the important "rule" that the quilts submitted could be of ANY shape...any Shape...Any SHAPE... that seemed important and the shape had been in my head from the instant I saw the fabric and read that one rule... and yet I did not start.

Last Tuesday I finished Magpies.  That was July 20th.  I really didn't want to see another pink flower for a while, and I was really excited about my color palette for my next project.  I was totally aware that I only had a few days - 3 to be exact - to GET it there.  But then I wasn't even sure where THERE was, either.  This is the first year I've done ANY quilt attempts (other than, I know, Older Daughter's quilt still on the frame these past years... well, year and a few months on the frame).  This is also the first time I've ever entered any shows of any kind.

I went to the Piecing Partners Quilting Guild meeting (my second month as a member) and that is when I figured out that "Magpies" could be turned in at a local quilting shop on August 7th.  That meant, now that I was done with it, that It didn't have to go anywhere for a while.  So, on July 21 I came home inspired and started making "Touched by Angels."

What if it doesn't come out right?  What if it isn't what I imagined? What if? what if? what if...

Rocky Mountain Quilt Festival entry

The Rocky Mountain Quilt Festival is coming up, so I made a small art quilt called "Magpies" to enter in it. There is a nest of Magpies at the Sonic here at the mall.  This spring the crabapple trees were GORgeous and I took pictures of the trees and the nest.  Later I decided it would make a good picture to turn into a quilt. 

I appliqued most of the pieces by hand, and then I added some flowers that are not sewed down.  They just have a button holding them to the quilt.  I hope they will add a more realistic effect to the piece.  I also "made" a nest out of fabric pieces and strips.  I rolled some pieces of fabric to resemble twigs and sticks as well.  I learned that magpies will collect just about anything and they are attracted to bright and shiny things.  I wrote this poem to go on the quilt.  Did you know that some magpie nests have been found with several pieces of tableware in them?  I didn't!  I added a spoon to the nest just to make it more real!!  These magpies are adding details to their nest as they await the hatching time.  The eggs are 3-d made of fabric and stuffed.

Sunflower IV

This was a picture in my head as I remembered the last time the kids and I grew sunflowers - the flower heads are SO textural.  I got a high texture paint and had so much FUN making all the seeds and even giving the petals their own petal texture.  This entire series is encaustic coated.

Sunflower III

This is Sunflower III.  The longer multicolored petals are paper beads.  The centers of the small flowers are copper-colored beads.  I had a lot of fun making the paper beads - and I got very sticky :-b!  I'm usually a mess in some way or other, though, and part of making art is cleaning up..

(Sunflower II was posted in July 1 in case you missed it)

Sunflower Series I

This is my first in the sunflower series - it is a watercolor and encaustic collage.  I just love Sunflowers!! They are so bright and cheerful all the time ;-)!  The encaustic gives the work a sheen which I also love.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Hot Air Balloon

This morning I dropped my son off at work and then turned around and came back home.  The sky was perfectly blue and the wind was so low it was almost  breathless.  As I came up the long hill to my last turn-off, I saw a couple of hot air balloons.  One seemed to be descending.  And it seemed to be descending right near the house. 

I pulled into the garage and ran upstairs, grabbed my camera and stepped out on the deck.  This is what greeted my eyes!

 This floating illusion of Oz was landing just across the street!  How beautiful! I would love to go for a ride in one.  It must be a lot like a sailboat - motion without sound - a totally ethereal feeling, but above everything instead of just above the water...

Sunday, July 4, 2010

July 4th

With a Big Thank You to all who worked, fought, lived, and died for our independence.

We went to America The Beautiful Park and celebrated with highly creative art displays, music, watermelon - and other food, and beautiful panoramic views.  Nothing better!

Thursday, July 1, 2010

The Music From Garden of the Gods

gluten free treasures

I was at the Chapel Hills Mall the other day and found a Delicious gluten free treat!  They have a new shop called "Wholly Crepes" (I didn't get the pun for a few hours).  They make a gluten free crepe on a gluten free crepe iron and they are AWESOME!!  The first time, I had the "Popeye" which has egg and spinach and their lovely "cream" - which is like sour cream but better - and it was luscious!  It was so good that I dreamed about it that night!  I dreamed I was getting another one.  They have two categories - savory and sweet.  The "Popeye" is in the savory category and indeed it is!

Then last Sunday we were at the mall again, and of course my first stop was "Wholly Crepes" - I got another "Popeye" followed by the most sinful apple-pie-like crepe topped with caramel and ice cream.  To die for!  They also have chocolate topped crepes and a creme brulee that I can't wait to try!

didn't win, but learned a lot!

I didn't win the Bernina Stitch It To Win It challenge, but I learned to make cloth paper. I learned that there are MILLIONS of techniques out there that I haven't tried! I would never have imagined putting copper sheets into a quilt!

I also took time out from quilting and started collage, including encaustic collage. This is really fun, and I set it up out on the deck out back. This way it is cooler and I can enjoy the birds nesting and feeding their babies, as well as the view of the eastern plains.

This is the 2nd in my sunflower series. So far I have 4. I really have enjoyed the sunniness of it and it was quite fun gathering things to put in it. The most unusual thing is an old VIN from a pre-70s vehicle that I found on the ground! How many collages actually have a VIN? :-)

I also will be opening my Etsy Shop "Irish Rose Needle Arts very soon.