The week before last I started thinking about Guinea Fowl. I know, strange thing to think about but lately I have been thinking about subjects to work with in different media. I am really enjoying getting back into drawing. I have placed a sizable order with Mr Blick and am waiting for it to arrive so that I can also do some painting. So many animals in Africa and yet the Guinea Fowl has its distinct place. In my eyes it does, just like the Quail in the Sonoran desert. See the legs at the top? I just start drawing and perhaps, but maybe not, I was going to draw a resting bird and then decided it needed legs, and I had to draw the legs at the top. It will get its legs eventually. Maybe I was distracted because my Nuvi GPS wouldn't turn on and I live with that thing. Not so much to find my way as to be able to listen to my books from Audible. Didn't think I could fix it, but with a little help from Google I discovered that all I had to do was press on the screen and on/off button at the same time.
August 30, 2009
I had bought these mola's in Panama and framed them when I got home but I have recently had my sofas reupholstered in a dark, deep purple and I kept thinking they needed some color. The stitching on the molas is amazingly fine. Just look how small they are compared to the pin. I could never work so finely. Ik ben meer van grote steken en snel thuis. The last picture shows 4 different fabrics that I bought for several projects, one being making cushions with the molas.
August 26, 2009
August 25, 2009
Athena takes watching a ball very seriously. Her eyes stay on the ball as you move it up or down. You are not going to trick her, because she makes sure of that. She has this intense look and is ever ready to catch a round blob of plastic. While in Prescott I was sitting on a bench observing the people using the town square in different ways. One young man was walking vigorously around the square and on his fifth time passing we chatted a bit. He said that walking a dog would make it so much nicer. Spontaneously I handed him the leash and only as I saw Athena and the young man walking off did I feel a pang of concern. Just imagine if he didn't return with my four-footed companion, but of course he did. I just might not do that again, ever.
A short respite from the heat was planned but it turned out that that particular weekend it would cool down in the low desert and that it would rain at higher elevations. We splashed through flooded roads and found it all very exciting. It was however the first time for me to see the desert drenched.
August 19, 2009
Seeing that I am making such good headway with finishing the mosaics on the fountain, I have already started planning my next project: the concrete bench outside. Tired of using just glass and ceramics I started looking if I could make something a little different. I found Tinker Tiles, an artist who makes tiles for others to use in their projects. I like humor in all aspects of life and so also in what I make. These fish have such personality and even have names. Betty being one of them. I think I will use smalti to create the ocean, so the next step is calculating how many I will need and in what colors. I will also make a composition with the fish on contact paper so that I have some idea if I have enough. I think I will commission a lobster and perhaps an octopus, or a mermaid. I am drawing these myself so that I can see if they will be a good fit with the rest.
We're in the middle of monsoon season here, which means the humidity is high. It doesn't necessarily mean rain. Still it's better indoors than out, and so I have been in the kitchen quite a bit. This bubbling and sweet smelling pastime made 6 jars of blueberry jam. It's fruit, half the amount of sugar and some lemon rind and juice. Pure goodness. It gelled well without the use of pectin. The lemon does the work.
August 8, 2009
August 3, 2009
Here, where I live, we don't have much in the way of exotic food although things are getting better. Since last year or so (at least that was when I heard about it) we have a Vietnamese grocery store. There I can buy cream crackers, lemon grass, fresh baby bok choi and satay sauce. I usually make nasi every week and a big batch of peanut sauce every now and then, but since we have the Vietnamese store I can actually buy it canned.
This week I saw a large squash kind of vegetable, which I didn't recognize and I was told it was 'like okra', for which I don't particularly care, but I will try anything once and this was a success because after some googling it turned out to be calabaza, which made it considerably less exotic but easier to prepare. One chopped onion (golden brown), add very thinly sliced squash, (sort of) stir fry until glassy. (I let it cook for about 3 mins - then stir - 3 mins again and so on till it looks (under) cooked - you want it to have texture). Add fresh garlic; fresh tomatoes; a chili pepper (I took out the seeds because I didn't want it to be too spicy); a can of sweetcorn, pepper and salt and let it simmer for a while, being careful not to let the opo/calabaza/squash go mushy. When finished add fresh cheese and place under broiler till melted. This is a Mexican way of preparing squash. Great with Mexican rice and some chicken from the grill.
Someone who knows about vegetables told me that it's a bottle gourd and not part of the squash family. It's a lufa like the ridge gourd and snake gourd.