bzedan: Cropped image of suspenders worn over collared shirt (me)
posted by [personal profile] bzedan at 08:35pm on 02/01/2013 under , , , , , ,

I tend to feel like I don’t make enough or do enough creative work. Compared to the output I used to do, I don’t. I try to remind myself that it’s okay! I work a fulfilling, creative job and sleep more and am pretty much happy. But it bums me out, especially since so many folks I know are constantly pumping out notable, awesome work. So when I sat down with my Flickr archive for this year (because Flickr has been my memory bank for years now), I didn’t expect much. This was the year I stopped doing focus months, I mean, how much could I have done?

Turns out? A decent amount.

Focus month: Branding Ma-Mé. I built and did the branding work for a friend’s site. It was super fun and I got paid for it! I like making other people’s ideas because I just like making stuff more than thinking of what to make.

Non-focus things made:
• I painted a painting that I then slid behind a bookcase, because I couldn’t throw it away, but why keep it?
• A TARDIS piñata for a dear friend. This has been re-Pinned on Pinterest about a million times.
Tardis piñata


Focus month: Airbrush! I have an airbrush and love it, but spent this month really learning it.

Non-focus things made:
Rebuilt arbour in yard.
• Murder-wall anniversary present for Chase.
Anniversary present, murder wall


Focus month: Mending & old work. Cleaned a bunch of stuff, got rid of a bunch of stuff, a really great feeling.

Non-focus things made:
• I did get a wig that is now my web avatar wig. God, I love this fake hair.
• Wrote a short-short.
Finished serialising the first draft of The Audacity Gambit.


Focus month: Chase’s show production, in which I showed you nothing.

Non-focus things made:
• Nothin. But I did start using Instagram.
Found my balloons and pump.


Focus month: Embroidery. Which was fun, but not a lot produced.

Non-focus things made:
• Taught myself eggshell veneer.
First try ay eggshell veneer, not terrible.


Focus Month: Another writing month. Editing The Audacity Gambit and working on the second book!

Non-focus things made:
• Made a sky bison costume for a cat.
• Shot a cover for TAG’s Draft 2 Lulu print.
Shooting The Audacity Gambit draft 2 cover


Focus month: Animatic. Which got extended, due to summer fun.

Non-focus things made:
Swatched my insane nail polish collection.
• Helped manage my workplace’s move to a new place.
• Made Chase a hell of a cake for his birthday.
Chase's petit fours cake, with the colours and pillars he picked out.


Focus month: Animatic, still. Which didn’t end how I expected. I decided to stop doing focus months.

Non-focus things made:
• Research for a friend’s Halloween costume.
• Ridiculous Adventure Time/Breaking Bad drawing.
• Modified a department store ball-jointed doll into a dryad.
Dryad Doll outside


•We bought a car, wtf.
Built rig for San’s cape from Princess Mononoke.
• Wrote lots of TAG book 2
Emily and the hare from book two.


• Got my first hand tattoos
• Made Princess Mononoke costume.
There. Done with San's cape and hood. Ended up going for attatching hood permanently. #fb


• Worked on a thing I hope to show you guys soon.
• Made a ridiculous cake
Surf cake


• Shot photos of cats in both old west and Avedon’s In the American West styles as presents.
Christmas Kitty: Avedon edit Bailey


So, a decent amount of things, I think? And through all of it, trying to keep my nails sick.


Not a bad 2012, let’s hope for more in 2013!

Mirrored from Journal of a Something or Other.

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posted by [personal profile] bzedan at 11:49am on 23/06/2009 under , ,

I bitch a lot about the arts.  I’ve cultivated a fine contempt for most of what I see treacling across my RSS.  However, there are some people who do not make my choke on my own vomitus.  I figure, since I am clearly way too occupied sorting our things away at the new place, I should fill this space with some of them.

Though Nicole is second I’ll mention, she was actually the first fiber/stitching artist I found that made me happy instead of raging.  I still had Craftzine’s blog on my RSS at the time, but was skipping most of what I saw.  Then, between a post on making twee flag bunting and something about Steampunk heart pins was a quote that caught my eye.

The idea with this project is to examine the implications of the fact that we now have the ability to disseminate widely something written very quickly, to a potentially very large audience… My response is to create this blog, posting embroidered diary entries on a semi-daily basis. While the posting of the image is nearly instantaneous, the act of physically creating the object is much slower than typing or even handwriting an entry. This forces me to think very carefully about what to include.

That was Embloggery.  I was thrilled.  I mean, my project at the time was embroidering maps from memory, revelling in the time spent/wasted on inaccurate information.  And I am mad fond of hyperlinking.  What made me happy was that, when Nicole was unable to embroider for a while we started to see what other things she turned to when her hands itched to make things.  And in March she started Red Tarts, confessing “Rugs are actually my real passion. I adore embroidery but sort of view it as my “hobby” whereas rugs are more like my “career.”".  As she went on we got to see more of her work, like using the ‘backside’ of a needlepunch piece to draw.

Nicole and her work was a driving force behind my own attempts to figure out how I felt about stitching and using fiber and thread as a “graphic mark”.  Her pure amusement and joy in stitching is a constant encouragement to keep going.

Mirrored from Journal of a Something or Other.

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posted by [personal profile] bzedan at 11:45am on 10/06/2009 under , ,

I bitch a lot about the arts.  I’ve cultivated a fine contempt for most of what I see treacling across my RSS.  However, there are some people who do not make my choke on my own vomitus.  I figure, since I am clearly way too occupied sorting our things away at the new place, I should fill this space with some of them.

First is Chelsea, who’s posted bits of her thesis on her blog, PlainMade.  I think I actually pumped my fist in the air when I read this bit, where she explains some of Christien Miendertsma’s influence in her work:

These politics are evident in my work through the direct, non-gendered use of craft. I use sewing as a simple method of adhering pieces of material together to form a garment. It is not used symbolically to talk about the role of women or gratuitously to suggest an interest in labor. Like Miendertsma, I am using the technique as a means to an end. In choosing textile forms, I try to work with garments that are not immediately symbolic in the way a piece of lingerie or a 1950’s style of dress might be. I am more interested in garments that are familiar and suggest a utility. It is the space within this familiar territory I wish to shift slightly and utilize as a site of communication.

Sometimes stitching is just stitching.

And sometimes strange conceptual work has an underlying sense of that “There’s got to be a better way” bit of David Cross’, Gothic revival gardening, protective camouflage and makes my brain happy and interested.

Stacks, stains

Chelsea sells prints through her PlainMade site and has another blog focusing on the conceptual work of herself and others, called Fool.  Through Fool is another store, where you can get her freaking awesome flat pack houseplants.

Mirrored from Journal of a Something or Other.

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posted by [personal profile] bzedan at 10:21pm on 16/05/2009 under , , , , , ,
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posted by [personal profile] bzedan at 02:15am on 23/04/2009 under , , , , , , ,

I’ve always been fond of my birthdate, it pleased me as a nerdy kid to have a birthday right after Earth day (rhyme!) and when I later found out that Shakespeare was born and died on the day1 it added some class. Two years ago I learned that the day is also St. George’s day, but it wasn’t until very recently I even looked at what he was patron of. Turns out, totally appropriate birth-day saint, since he was also Palestinian. Rock.

Anyhow, as of late I’ve been all embroidery-y and trying to use stitching as just another media, something to draw with and be just another “graphic mark“.  I am not a single media person at all, and I’ve been trying to better integrate my stitching into the other work I do and have done.  So. I figured, birthdays?  Totally a good push to do something about it and what better than a haiographic saint icon to work with as a subject?

There was a lot of image searching to get the brain churning.  What bothered me about a lot of the traditional icons was that a) the dragon came from a lake, not a cave guys; 2) always the dragon is being stabbed in the image, which is false advertising as St. George doesn’t kill the dragon right there— he puts this princess’ girdle on it and takes it back to the village to bully them all into being baptised; 3) he was a Roman soldier and part Palestinian, something not often reflected in his face or clothing (which is just how religious arts work traditionally, but still2).  So I did a drawing, transferred it to my fabric and got to work.

Not bad for a day's work

Overall, it worked out to eight days of stitching on the MAX (I tend to read on the bus legs of the trip, as it is jouncy and hard to work precisely) and a lovely afternoon of painting, 12-15 hours total.  Which isn’t bad, especially considering that a chunk of that was technical dead time anyhow.

The end result I’m super happy with, its a step in a good direction, I think.  I love stitching and embroidery because it is like painting and sculpting and sewing all together.

St George: depth detail

All in all, a nice way to ring out my 25th year and bring in the next.

1.  According to the Julian calendar.
2.  I think this is partially why the knight/dragon thing is so medival and England, because it was painted that way so often, despite the whole thing going down in the late third century.

Mirrored from Journal of a Something or Other.

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posted by [personal profile] bzedan at 05:17pm on 22/04/2009 under , , , , ,

While slumming around Portland with awesome folks on Sunday after Stumptown we hit Powells, like you do.  Resting tired feet in the Pearl room, I found that we were in a section of utter awesomeness, being lots of art history.  I am a magpie, easily attracted to certain book spines and while poking through little plate books of Persian miniatures I found a book of Russian icons from the 12th to 15th centuries.  I have a fondness for icons, the combination of bold imagery with complex symbolism is fascinating.  However, I’m not that up on all the meanings, so some plates, like this one:

The Decapitation of St John the Baptist

make me think of  Aarne-Thompson type 312 (Bluebeard).  Like, people look in this hole they weren’t supposed to and BAM, head off.  Really though, it’s St. John the Baptist and what we’re seeing here is sequential story telling.  The head in the hole is his.  Snap.

What decided me buying the book was that there is a plate of the best horse drawn ever in it.

St George

Look at this horse. Is it not the best ever? Holy crap you have never seen a better horse.

Anyhow, turns out this wizard is Elijah (still a wizard, frankly), and Jesus is not stealing a baby, that’s his mom’s soul and she’s being escorted in style to heaven.  The plate listing was an uncut page so I didn’t even see it till way after I had it home.

Icons, guys.  The raddest.

Mirrored from Journal of a Something or Other.

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A long, long time ago I used to be a painter. It was what I did. I had a mural background and everything. And I discovered sculpting and printmaking and there was a nice time where all those traditional things were meshed nicely and whatever. I grew out of it, because seriously? Committing to one media? As if. Nonetheless, some things stick. So, even though modern tradition in embroidery calls for a (beautiful, tasty, delectable) rainbow of colours as a palette, I still have the mentality of mixing one’s colour so it doesn’t look like it’s straight out of the bottle.

Colour wheel

I’m missing a good green, but the plan is to slowly replace the last couple of colours (blue and brown, primarily) with hues reflecting the palette I used when painting, mixed with the palette I currently stock for my random attacks of paint. The colours on the outside wheel (pink, purple, light olive and light turquoise) are novelty ones that are just useful to have.  First off, I need to find a nice <a href=”” rel=”nofollow”>Hooker’s Green</a>.

I know I have my old colour wheel from school somewhere, once I find it the process will go easier. It’s hard to remember seven-plus years back.

Mirrored from Journal of a Something or Other.

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So, I’m spring cleaning. Part of this is going through the bits and pieces of work that I did near on a decade ago in college. Some things I still like quite a lot.

Old work: House, phase 1 Old work: House, phase 2

Others I don’t. I plan to take pictures of the pieces I do not want/need around any longer then junk ‘em. Ah the growing process. Speaking of which, I found a box of old sketchbooks and journals from 2007 and earlier. It is kind of neat to see the improvement that drawing nearly every day gave me.

Mirrored from Journal of a Something or Other.

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posted by [personal profile] bzedan at 07:00pm on 03/12/2008 under ,

Chase has some photos in a show this month. He’s part of a group show (MIXED MAGIC Humor in Contemporary Art) at Autzen Gallery. From December 5 through December 22. Opening reception is Friday, December 19, 2008 from 6-8 p and regular hours are Monday through Friday, 9a to 5p. The summary of the show is this:

The artists included in mixed magic all have humor in common. Its form and usage are mixed but the intent is very clear. This group of artists uses the angle of comedy and humor to approach more complex subject matter. After the initial laugh, this work forces the viewer to look into areas and issues they might not regularly consider. The gestures range from small and nuanced to brash and unapologetic. With the current climate of America and the globe, it is important to consider humor as a means of understanding and dealing with our surroundings.

Damned if I know what else is in it, but our friend Matt curated it and he’s pretty much the raddest.

Mirrored from Journal of a Something or Other.

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posted by [personal profile] bzedan at 04:50pm on 02/12/2008 under , ,

I am in a group show.

Despite how I’ve been avoiding art (I just make shit, yo), I was way too tempted by the theme of this show for Sequential Art Gallery.

Ten Cent Tales

Pulp novel covers. Yes please.

I did way too much research on fonts and old British money and style conventions of the early to mid 1960s, then shot it all to hell by using a light coloured background, which is much more a mid-to-late 70′s trope. Whatever, there are stockings and a gun and some ladies and I found the perfect frame. Sneak peek of early progress scans here and here. The final thing is digital editing, painting, cleanup over the finished painting.

There is, as is normal, a First Thursday shindig from 6-10p. The gallery is open Saturdays 11a-5p, for those of you who do not do the First Thursday thing.

Chase has some work in a group show this month too, more info when I gets it.

Mirrored from Journal of a Something or Other.


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