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January 30, 2008

shop update

etsy shop update: new line of notebooks!

I've been working on a new line of notebooks and uploaded the first batch to my etsy shop last night. They're pocket sized pamphlet bindings sewn on the short side, made from recycled newsprint that I use as blotters while I'm printing (so the pages have all sorts of lovely print remnants on them). Right now there are two cover options, with more coming soon. I just squeaked in under the wire to satisfy goal #10 on my ├╝berlist, which is to have new things in the shop twice monthly.

Posted by jodi at 10:18 AM | Comments (3) | categories:  capitalist pig

January 29, 2008

i said i'd love you forever, but i never promised i'd be true

When last we visited our intrepid heroine, she was pledging her undying love to Miss Henry and settling in for a cozy afternoon with her newfound passion. Well, turns out she's a faithless bitch, and that very afternoon, mere hours after waxing poetic right here on this very weblog about her hot and heavy new sweater romance, she'd already thrown poor Miss Henry aside for another.

straight outta brompton

Meet Straight Outta Brompton, the backstreet girl our knitter couldn't resist.

What can I say, I've always been a sucker for a beautiful pair of wrists.

(by the way, how can anyone stand to actually compose an entire weblog in the third person? Ugh. How embarrassingly pompous.)

Miss Henry still gets my knitty heart fluttering though, and is now long enough to wrap her soft wooliness around my armpits. And also my elbow. She's still my preferred bus knitting at the moment. I've already slipped her wee bit of sleeve onto my arm two times? (three times? at least two times just today, I think) and forced Peter to look at how beautiful she is (oh, he loves that, I assure you).

miss henry, now up to the armpits and with a bit of an arm
Not sure why this wool is so impossible to photograph. Y'all might just have to take my word on how beautiful and soft it is. Really. So soft if you could feel it you'd want to rub it all over your body like the lady in the cashmere toilet paper commercial. You would too, don't try to deny it.

Straight Outta Brompton has had to come off her needle in order to do Miss Henry's sleeve ribbing, but she too has grown, with an almost completed yoke:

straight outta brompton, almost finished the yoke

Both of these projects are part of my big stash and burn '08 project (I don't mean literally burn, not like some people. . . ), about which I still haven't written a dedicated post even though January is so over I can taste it. Because I am a lazy slag above all else. But you knew that.

Posted by jodi at 09:04 PM | Comments (2) | categories:  sticks and string

January 19, 2008

i hope you get things done the way that you intend
'cause you know how to get things done, and not everybody does that

I'd intended to spend at least the first part of the day in the studio today, cutting new woodblocks and working on some prints for a portfolio exchange that's due soon. But the cold and rainy weather doesn't provide much motivation for leaving the house and getting things done, and somehow I whiled away the better part of the morning still in my pyjamas, futzing around online and leaving comments on photos from my old elementary school that other people have posted to facebook (I know, I KNOW).

So I got my umbrella and squelched and slid my way along the muddy, eroding foot path to the studio and grabbed my freshly-printed dresses off the drying rack (I wouldn't have bothered going in at all at this point, but I didn't have a dress to wear other than the ones in that rack), and came back home straightaway. I've just gotten off the phone with my mom (it's her birthday today!) and I think I'll settle back on the couch and spend some quality time with a nice pot of strong black tea and this, the newest object of my affection:


That's Ariann (but I'm choosing to call mine Miss Henry) by Bonne Marie Burns. Since I've publicly declared my intention to knit from stash this year (I've been dragging my arse on making a dedicated blog post about this and about documenting/cataloguing the stash, but it'll happen soon, I promise), I had to find something around the apartment for this project. I had my doubts as I cast on with this recycled secondhand Gap-sweater wool, all the reasons why the wool sucked competing in my mind with my stitch count: its boringness, its drab colour, its devastating lack of fancy-store-boughtness. But after soldiering on through the ribbing and into the eyelet pattern I began to notice how pleasingly sturdy my button band was, how perfectly defined the columns of decreases were, how wonderfully rich (not at all drab) the grey was, and how incredibly cozy-soft it felt. I wish I could let y'all feel it, the poorly-lit photo (see above re: cold rainy weather) doesn't do it justice at all. Because, you know what? Recycled secondhand drab grey Gap-sweater lambswool is PERFECT. And I am madly in love with this sweater already, even though I'm only nine inches into it so far. I plan to change that today, and woodcuts can wait until tomorrow.

And speaking of sweaters I love, allow me to clumsily segue into this, a show-and-tell of my totally awesome curling sweater, bought last summer at the Goodwill buckapound:

my jacket is so much more awesome than your jacket

Not even having to explain to all of my students what curling is, and then later to my fellow grads that they're rocks, not tanks, could dampen my giddy happiness at wearing this silly thing. I think I'm going to make this my default winter coat. All I need now is a faded blue and red plaid lumber jacket to wear underneath. I bet the buckapound can help me out there, too.

Posted by jodi at 11:11 AM | Comments (17) | categories:  sticks and string

January 16, 2008

it "snowed" tonight!

By the time I got the pictures uploaded, the snow had already turned to rain. Too bad, I was hoping for a snow day tomorrow. But you never know, if this rain gets too cold overnight they could declare it "ice" and shut down the university anyway. At any rate, I was ecstatic to have some snow here in Athens. I even danced in it a little.

it's snowing!


Posted by jodi at 10:47 PM | Comments (7) | categories:  canadians love to talk about the weather

January 13, 2008

pretend you saw this last month, because that's when i meant to post it

Some of my beginning lithography students' final work. You can see more of their work in a litho students flickr set (and my drawing students from 2006-07 here).

student work, ARST 2320 beginning lithography, fall 2007
Belt buckle by Holly Kovacs. Lithography, digital, resin.

student work, ARST 2320 beginning lithography, fall 2007
Ross Hart, 7-colour lithograph with chine colle.

student work, ARST 2320 beginning lithography, fall 2007
Adam Newdow, colour separation lithograph.

Another student, Tyler Jackson, made a stop motion animation for his final project. You can watch it here: The Reef on youtube.

Here are a few of my favourites from earlier in the semester:

student work
Kathryn Byrne, 4-colour reduction lithograph.

student work
Ross Hart, 5-colour lithograph.

student work
Josh Harris, 4-colour lithograph.

student work
Adam Newdow, 4-colour reduction lithograph.

Posted by jodi at 06:29 PM | Comments (4) | categories:  school

January 09, 2008

something that made me cringe, then laugh delightedly (then keep twitching for a while after)

Remember the super-awesome Wax Jodi Head from last summer? If not, go check it out while I wait here.


Yesterday Nastassja posted a fantastic series of photos of the wax head dismantling process. This is the point at which my eyebrow twitch kicked in:


And that one spot where my bottom lip is ticklish started buzzing softly, right about here:


See the rest here. I have to say I'm glad to see that the wax head is impermanent and the materials all get recycled, partly because I don't have to worry about where my likeness ends up, but mostly because it's just more like I'd like my own body to end up, dismantled and reused rather than preserved forever. While embalming seems like a fascinating and tricky art to me, I'd really rather be allowed to decompose naturally, or be fed to crows or something. Since that's not really a legal option then I guess I'll go for burning (after anything useful has been taken, of course) but it's not my first choice.

Jeez. What it is about mortuary arts that get me all morbid? Oh. Yeah.

Here's something else that made me both cringe and laugh yesterday, but not in nearly as good a way: the iTaser. No, really. iTaser. For listening to mp3s and stunning people. Why didn't I learn about that in my self defense class? (the one where I learned, among other fun yet tasteless facts, how to kill a man with two fingers).

When Taser International comes up with something that can cook me a hot breakfast and wax my legs while I zap people, then I might be interested.

Posted by jodi at 04:19 PM | Comments (9) | categories: 

January 08, 2008

schedules and plans: the 2008 Überlist

I haven't been very attentive to this little journal lately; my 500th post somehow went by without my even noticing, even though it seems I almost never post here anymore. I'm going to try to change that, and take the time to write here more often. That is not a resolution. Just a plan.

I taught my first class of the semester this morning, and I'm pretty stoked. This is the first time I've been able to teach the same class for a second time, so now I have a chance to tweak the curriculum and do all of the things I wish I'd done last time but didn't think of in time and just generally become a better printmaking instructor than I was a few months ago. My class is from eight to eleven a.m. this semester, so I get to teach during my most productive hours rather than the sleepy midday hours that I had last semester. And several (four, I think?) of my students this time around are printmaking majors, which I'm expecting will have a very positive effect on the overall class mentality. I'm anticipating a lot of good printmaking going on in the litho shop this spring.

Peter and I banged out a schedule for the semester last night, and it's even better than I thought it would be. Since he's taking a study leave to work on a big research project, he's got a lot more flexibility with travel, and the longest we'll have to be apart, according to our master schedule, is slightly less than three weeks. So we've got these glorious four months, basking in that light shining on us from down at the end of the tunnel there, to ease back into life together, re-establish our routines. And then at the end of it all he's going to bring the kids down for a visit, we'll pack up the studio and whatever crap I can't get rid of, and go home.

I was hoping for this spring to be the time when Peter and I could take some longer trips in the South, especially to New Orleans. But it looks like there just isn't going to be time for that sort of trip. Instead, we'll do smaller, closer things. Asheville. Savannah. The place in Georgia where the Cabbage Patch Dolls are born. We're going to Baltimore for a weekend in February, I'm going to a conference in Richmond VA in March. After all this, we're going to try keeping our tourism within Canada for a little while (I've lived in Windsor for what, seven and a half years now and have never been to Point Pelee).

I've just completed my (slightly overachieving) Überlist for 2008. These are not resolutions, just things I hope to accomplish. They're not organized in any way, just in the order in which I wrote them down in my book; this will give you some idea of how my brain works, flitting from here to there seemingly randomly (like many of my generation, Sesame Street taught me to have a three-minute attention span) and then obsessively going back again and again to the same things. Big, difficult, life changing things (not too many of those, I'm not quite THAT ambitious) are mixed in with little, easy-to-accomplish things. Some goals, mainly home improvement goals, are things that Peter and I will likely accomplish together, but as we share the problem of allowing the house stuff to slide, I think these things can still count towards my list. So here goes, 2008's Überlist:

1. (try to) draw every day

2. knit only from stash (YIPES! there will be a separate post on this later, with some rules laid out)

3. finish or frog all outstanding knit projects

4. finish printed quilt

5. apply to 2 shows per month

6. apply to 6 residencies

7. comment more on blogs

8. get website up to date

9. -once up-to-date, update website twice monthly

10. new items in etsy shop twice monthly

11. get rid of (SELL) all t-shirts before leaving Athens

12. re-evaluate stash, give some away

13. write letters. real ones. on paper.

14. clean out inbox twice monthly

15. knit up all leftover sock yarn into blanket squares

16. ride my bike more

17. revive "edition-a-week" - stick with it!

18. draw during meetings instead of knitting

19. eat less junk

20. examine hungers

21. floss twice weekly

22. go through clothes: Goodwill or refashion 30% (thesis dresses don't count)

23. put up shelves in basement

24. purge basement of useless stuff (HUBCAPS?)

25. ditto for attic

26. take pictures of all the stuff on the plate rail to post on flickr

27. document student work throughout the semester instead of all at the end

28. get Fall 2007 student work up on flickr

29. go through the drawer of photocopied journal articles - pitch those I'll never read

30. read at least 50% of what's left

31. finish tearing down back deck

32. plant a flowering crab over the kitty graves

33. clean up junk from backyard. no more Sanford + Son!

34. can tomatoes

35. weed backyard

36. pour a new sidewalk out front

37. wash windows

38. eat locally and in season

39. buy more produce at the farmers market, less at Zehrs

40. more local tourism - visit Point Pelee!

41. and Uncle Tom's Cabin

42. go on a tour of Walkers

43. once back in Windsor, print at W.P.F. two days a week

44. re-work copper plates

45. re-work or throw away old zinc plates

46. when Peter is around, go to bed earlier (nudge)

47. when Peter is not around, less internet, more work/craft in evenings

48. put my toys away when I'm finished with them

49. re-organize filing cabinet

50. bake more bread

51. rip and re-knit Bridie sweater (in a size that will actually fit)

52. design submissions to at least 4 publications

53. write up Rosaleen scarf pattern

54. cut down bead stash - give away at least 50%

55. learn to play my accordian

56. make a new satchel

57. make satchels for the etsy shop

58. start some new house plants

59. water them

60. spin up 1/2 of fibre stash

61. paint our bedroom

62. throw out the last of the Barbage from the attic

63. make draft stoppers for upstairs windows

64. draft stopper for front door

65. re-organize record collection

66. listen to all of our records in alphabetical order

67. eat at least one meal at home per week with chopsticks, for practice

68. socialize more with the other grad students

69. clean up my studio and keep the table clear

70. cut up all the paper littering the studio (for binding into books)

71. bind books with it or throw it away

72. visit a province I've never been to

73. meet up in real life with 4 blog friends

74. post at least one photo (to flickr) every day

75. fix up my falling-apart Russian garb

76. put up at least one batch of preserves each month (seasonal)

77. eat less wheat

78. cook with Peter more often

79. learn to make the perfect whiskey sour

80. teach a workshop at the Printmakers Forum

81. volunteer at Artcite

82. read a contemporary novel or nonfiction per month

83. fold laundry the same day it gets washed

84. go to art galleries more often

85. don't bitch about people

86. go to the dentist

87. reduce amount of plastics in our home

88. organize my big binder of recipes

89. try a new recipe from every cookbook we own

90. shoot less digital, more film

91. convert an old camera to pinhole

92. and actually take pictures with it on a regular basis

93. make a good, professional-looking tailored jacket

94. get my next tattoo

95. get my learner's permit

96. get rid of all the dead ballpoint pens in the house

97. take pictures of the sculptures down by the river

98. take pictures of all the places I lived in Athens before I leave

99. take pictures of all the places I lived in London

100. spend a day taking pictures around Huron Park

101. tat enough lace to actually make or trim something

102. do more stuff with all of us, me/Pete/Dylan/Claire

103. throw all my change in a jar and then do something fun with it

104. yoga 4 times a week

105. take my vitamins every day

106. learn to make good bread without wheat (is this possible?)

107. let go of petty angers and annoyances

108. make 2009 Überlist before 2009 begins

Posted by jodi at 02:34 PM | Comments (18) | categories:  überlist

January 04, 2008

january brought jane, but jane's so full of pain. . .

The cold that brewed steadily through the last days of December became a croaking, creaking pain by New Year's Eve, and a fun party-time evening with friends old and new was spent alternately coughing and slowly sipping scotch, hoping for some relief for my throat. My throat responded by dumping a thick pile of crud onto my vocal cords, where it has sat until today, when I spoke my first words of 2008 (unless you count stage whispers and hand gestures). I sound like a June bullfrog, that is when I can get any sound to come out at all. But it's starting to look like I may have enough voice in me to teach my class on Tuesday after all.

toy house in the snow

Posted by jodi at 09:51 PM | Comments (4) | categories:  self-absorbtion