Thursday

The ABC's of Patterns....... GHI

...From a little book I made...

G for Geometrical... ornament based on patterns made of lines, squares, circles, etc...




I like that designs based on geometrics can begin with simple elements and become quite complicated with their repetition....




... I loved the geometrics in this 13" x 12" x 26" cabinet, that I found at a flea market... I use it for bead storage... I like looking at the repeating rhythm and knowing it is a functional object...



Simple triangular elements where color makes the pattern bolder... Although I love making quilts I found this one at another flea market... rather Amish feeling...




H for Hippocamp... mythical marine monster with a head, body and forelegs of horse .... tail of fish; ........Poseidon's horse.........




Sometimes referred to as hippocampus in Greek and Roman mythology... the ancients believed they were the adult form of the sea-horse...

...there is also a part of the brain referred to as the hippocampus... it is involved in memory forming, organizing, and storing.... It is particularly important in forming new memories and connecting emotions and senses, such as smell and sound, to memories.



Hippocamp-drawn chariot of Poseidon | Roman mosaic C3rd A.D. | Sousse Museum


... mosiac from Sousse Museum, Sousse, Tunisia... Imperial Roman Period, C3rd AD.






Poseidon (Roman Neptune) with trident in hand... drives a chariot drawn by four Hippokampoi through the sea... a floor mosiac from Ostia Antica, Rome, Italy





I for Interlacing... ornamental patterns of bands, woven or plaited together





Over.. Under... In ... and Out... ............That is what this is all about...




A appliquéd portion of a front panel of a vest I did representing interlacing, twisting, twining Zoomorphic bird necks... I love Celtic art and the patterns and designs created from that period...





..a few fringes of a striped blanket I spun and wove back when I kept sheep and Angora goats... I love the heft of these fringes and the flip-flop that they make when moving the blanket...

All of the colors were natural in this... no dying...The natural fleece was from my sheep... the colored fleece was from a friends..... we traded.... I taught her to spin and weave... she gave me some beautiful Border Leicester fleece... and her friendship...




...the interwoven canes of a very large, 24" across basket I use to hold lots of teased fleece. I keep it in a spot that I can't miss, so it will draw me back to it one of these days... spinning is so meditative and relaxing... if you have never tried it, you should... it really helped me to understand how threads, yarn and fabric were created...


...from my "ABC's of Patterns" book ... Click for the introduction of ABC designs....... and the DEF designs post...  and here for J

approx. 6" x 7" x 1"... ...handbound...
.

31 comments:

Ruth said...

There is a lot of beauty and information here, have to let it all sink in.

It is very nice to see the patterns in things, and I too find simple repeated patterns, as in your chest, very appealing. Great place for those beads.

So the hippocampus must be what rauf talked about the other day in response to my egg post - the place that stores memories until a smell or something evokes it again. Cool! I learned something, both about that and the mythical creature. I am so bad about mythology, much to my poetry mentor's chagrin.

I look forward to seeing and hearing more about that vest.

The natural blanket is gorgeous, and so is that basket of teased fleece.

Ahh, now I'm full of lovely Gwen images, imaginings and words. I can start my day.

Gwen Buchanan said...

Hey I think that is exactly the spot in the brain that Rauf was referring to, Ruth... how coincidental!!!

Sort of like when I hear the song "Color my World" by Chicago.. I am back in that exact spot when I was 15.

You might like a little spinning wheel in your studio.. you can think up lines of poetry as you prepare fleece and spin it into any dimension or texture... I don't think it would hurt your wrists...

Whenever I spin I usually drift away and when I come back I have spools of spun wool before me...

It is the gentle rhythm of the wheel and the treadling that calms lets the mind take over.... and then there is the silky touch of certain fleece such as alpaca or baby Angora goat(mohair)... it is what I imagine angel hair to feel like......

Anet said...

Wow... hippocampus, that happens to me all the time. My mom and I were just talking about that when something can trigger another memory, time or place. Now I get it!
The work in your abc book is just amazing. How long did it take you?
I am in awe of all you do Gwen, I was thinking when I first saw the wicker basket, "Now if she made that to I'm just going to have a fit!" I bet you probably have weaved baskets too! You're just amazing!!!
That's all I can say.

Arija said...

Ah my lovely girl of many talents, you remind me so much of a much younger me. You asked about the fire. That story needs a book. In 1983 in our major bushfires we lost our solid stone with 18"-21" walls, historic house, 3 acre (also historic) garden, most of our animals, my studio for everything from painting, pottery ( mainly salt glazed stoneware), sculpture,silver and gold -smithing, and spinning and weaving. Also our extensive library and musical instruments and irreplaceable sheet music, 40 yrs worth of embroidery and our thousands of precious photographs and all else. However, since I had asked God to leave me my children who were both in grave danger, I thought myself well off, if a little traumatised, since He/She saw fit to leave us our beloved German Shepherd for three more years as well as my Siamese cat who unfortunately was already on kidney shots and only lasted another six weeks. That was six weeks before our 25th, annyversary. So, there you have it in a nutshell. So what happened to you in our parallel though off ser universe? You can mail me if you like at arija.pilskalns@gmail.com

Jazz said...

Wow Gwen, is there nothing you can't do???

Your talents never cease to amaze me.

Ruth said...

Oh Gwen, I have a spinning wheel, and I never once thought of putting it in the studio. Brilliant.

The wheel was passed down in my mom's family, don't know how old it is, but it could be early 1800s. My dad used to tease whoever would listen and say 'it came over on the Mayflower' - because it came on a Mayflower moving van when my grandma passed away. Hehe.

There was a woman in my hometown not too far from here who emigrated from Germany during WWII to get away from that craziness, with her husband. The two of them used to walk our little town for exercise. When my mom and dad's house was on a Christmas home tour one year in the '80s, she sat at this spinning wheel and spun. So I know it works! And all it's doing is gathering dust at the moment upstairs.

Oh, and my daughter the designer did a fibers minor in art school and learned to spin. Her dream is to have animals like you did and gather their wool for spinning.

Hillary said...

What a feast for the eyes, and a leaping off point for the memory. The book is beautiful. The blanket looks so soft and warm. Weaving is still quite strong in NZ because of the sheep population and more recently Llama, Alpacca etc. I have made an amish quilt, no curves, no patterned cloth,an interesting challenge as my daughter chose yellow, black, green and blue. I like the small drawer set and almost bid for one similar on our local trading site, it ended up going for way too much. I will go round looking at my things with different eyes. Thanks.

Janice Thomson said...

Gwen this is such a beautiful post with tidbits of you and your beautiful artistry. I'm amazed at and enjoy your many talents.

Robyn said...

Aah, such wonderful things to see. I can think of umpteen uses for that dear little cabinet and I love the quilt, but best of all is your handmade pattern ABC.

Sandy said...

Really enjoyed this whole post and the images you posted. Intricate designs are so intriguing to look at.

Sharon said...

Beautiful post as always!

shicat said...

This is an amazing post... as they all are. Just lovely.

kate said...

Amazing Gwen! You and your x-acto knife were very busy! And I love the printing on each page...wonkily wonderful. And, as usual your post is full of fascinating information. Looking forward to JKL.

Don said...

I am lost in thought about the ways artisans have used natural materials to make useful and beautiful things for millenia. You are one of them...

Gwen Buchanan said...

Hi Anet, Don't we have strange triggers sometimes!
I think the book took about 1 month in my spare time... I really loved doing it..I was always anxious to get back to it...

I have tried basket weaving but never had the proper materials at the time .. this one I found at a yard sale, so you don't need to take a fit!!! haha..... it is really roughly made but that makes me like it more.

***

Oh yes Jazz... there are 5 million and one things I could not do... I was just a back to the lander in the early 70's and wanted to try anything I could to be self-sufficient.. really make me appreciate the pioneers!

***

Ruth, I remember now, that you did tell me earlier on that you had a wheel.. I forgot! I would just love to sit in front of your wheel and see how it feels to spin on.. every wheel has its idiosyncrasies and some are specially made for certain sizes and twists of yarn...

You are so lucky to have special memories attached to your wheel.."over on the mayflower!!" Quite the storyteller.. But for it to have come down through the generations... that is a treasure!

You seem to have a very full life!

Lesley sounds like she fell in love with fibers too.. I hope she gets a chance to have her own animals someday... I know she will love them..

***

Thank you Hillary, I would love to see the Amish Quilt you made!! the solid colors with the black makes such a bold quilt.. it almost vibrates...
maybe the next little box you see will be a good deal.. this little one was one of my best deals... only $10.00. Boy did I grab that fast...

***
Oh thank you so Much Janice... Creativity helps keep a lot of us sane!!!

***

Hi Robyn, I bet you could think of some lovely little treasures to fill up those drawers with... I wish everyone would go over to your blog and see the wonderous work you do.. Your carved wooden totems are so stunningly beautiful!!!

***

Hey Sandy, I am glad we can share back and forth .. it is a small world isn't it... let's hope the power never goes out for long!!

***

Hi Sharon!! I sure hope the wild animals out your way, have decided to stay in the woods and off the road...

***

Thank you Shicat. you are so welcome to come over anytime.

***

Oh Thank you, Kate, yes, I had to change a few blades to finish this!

I am always bowled over by the wondrous things I find at your blog..

***

Don it is wonderful to be inspired by so many that have brought beauty to the world... it is hard to do them justice...

and you, I see how you care about teaching young children to appreciate and strive... I see that as the most worthy activity!!

***

Awww. 7 years before me, Arija... I am so sorry for that tragic devastation... We always think that fires will never happen to us... only to the other guy.. it takes some time to recover from such an event.. and ordinary things suddenly become precious... of course it does not need to be said that our familys escape from the fire is the Absolutely Most Important Thing above all else...

but mourning does occur for something that will never be again... the death of our previous life and all effort it took to create it... part of our heart goes missing... We feel shocked and stunned and unable to properly cope or accept what has happened.. In the days that followed I remember standing in among the ashes and debris all alone and turning in a circle and trying to get it in my head that this life was over... I remember standing there in one spot and have 3 hrs passed in an instant

... I know we should not get attached to material things but I guess we do... particularly, things that gave us emotional pleasure or satisfaction...things that calmed the soul...little treasures...

some things can slowly be replaced but some can never be.. they will only ever be wandering in our minds...

Chris' Greetings from the Shady Grove said...

Your talents amaze me. I love your book and the applique work too. I'm sending a link to your post my mom. She loves all things paper and she is going to love this book, especially "G". Only a few meteors here. It was overcast the last 3 nights :(

Jo Horswill said...

Gwen, I just love seeing what other people do...You seem to be one that does it all!!!
I love repetition in design, as a printmaker, I use this technique allot.
Your handbound book is pretty special...I too have a facination for lettering. I love old text...Greek & the Hungarian Runic symbols too.
Anything celtic is wonderful...
Love the fringe! I have used kid mohair and angora in my felting, so soft and silky, beautiful to touch.
I love your basket of fleece, it's looks great as it is.

Gwen Buchanan said...

hey Chris! It is so foggy out now!!! so no watching the meteor showers here either...
I am flattered that you would tell your mom ... What types of paper work inspire her?

*****

Hi Jo, I just like to figure out how to make something, and see the process... my favourite part.

I would love to spend time in your studio... sounds like there would be lots of things to absorb my interest.. Thank you

dberube-art said...

Hey Gwen, absolutely love your book concept and completely appreciate repetative geometric shapes as well, love working it into my artwork when possible.

Arija said...

Dearest Gwen, thank you for being. Whenever my heart seeks ease I home in here and rest my soul in your wonder of wonders of a garden. Next to Anemone hepatica, Dicentra spectabilis is one of my all time favourites. Unfortunately in our climate it is almost impossible to grow it as a perennial. If lucky it may survive for two years with one or two flowers, not spikes in the second.

I am so sorry you had to endure the same trauma. Yes, it is the dear little meaningless things to others one sorely misses. After 25 yrs my eyes still roam the shelves of second hand bookshops and jumble sales for one particular children's book called "The General", the transformation of a militarist into a smiling individual sitting in a flower studded meadow, a foolish grin upon his face, medals bedecking his chest, his legs stretched out before him and happyness writ large upon the scene.

What ever else, the total loss of our amassed life and triggers for our memories is, at least, a lesson in letting go and helps the soul to gently leave on it's joury home when the time comes.

Sorry for the ramble, feel free to delete.

Gwen Buchanan said...

Arija, I would never delete a shared thought from you and it was not a ramble... It means a lot to me... Even though, it is through unfortunate circumstances, I love that we can understand why we each feel the way we do...kindred spirits I would surely say!!

Oh you are so kind ... the Bleeding heart.. I am surprised how it is flourishing since moving it to east side of the house......
On the hot south side it barely survived and was very tiny... never flowered... I almost lost it...

This story of "the General" certainly shows what a little bit of dirt under the fingernails can do for a soul.. a very special meaning.

Please ramble here anytime, it was wonderful! Thank you!!!

Gwen Buchanan said...

Hi David,
you are such an original... your work so distinct... This is what I love! Thanks!!

Brenda said...

Hi! I just found your blog via Sandy and love all of your work. Your jewelry is beautiful and your cutouts are very cool. I also love celtic anything, and the quilt is one that I attempted last year, but had some trouble with it and set it aside. I love that ocean wave pattern though. Very nice blog!

Gwen Buchanan said...

Thanks so much for visiting Brenda, oh really pleased to see you recognize the pattern... that optical illusion can be puzzling sometimes when it is time to assemble!!

mansuetude said...

Hello... there is so much here, it is over flowing;
I came over a few nights ago, late, and wordless and now, all these comments to read. There is so much peace and love and giving here.

I feel like this post is a history lesson, that you must be a great teacher of heart and gifts. Love the weavings, the connections between the box drawers and the memory (place of organizing, storing). Peace.

Gwen Buchanan said...

Thanks you so much, Mansuetude! You know, most people are pretty kind, I'm finding... and quite curious.. glad those traits are still left in the human race!!

I like how your mind works! Thanks!

rivergardenstudio said...

What a fascinating post! I love the way your mind works and how you can share how one beautiful thing leads to another... Roxanne

lynne h said...

gwen, it took a while but i finally realized that you *made* this book!! wow!!! how wonderful!

and you say to me that i do lots of different kinds of stuff?! good heavens, i'm not holding a candle to you sweet woman...

Gwen Buchanan said...

Hi Roxanne, I really is lovely to be able to connect and converse with so many talented people.. Thank you.


Hi Lynne, I seem to have forgotten to mention that at the beginning...so I added a line...
thanks for the reminder for people who just dropped in...

denise said...

Oh, Gwen. Everything you put your hand on is a creative wonder. You have such a talent. And goats and weaving too? Love it.

I am allergic to wool, and recently got some angora goat hair which was dyed with plant dyes. I am teaching myself to use a drop spindle and hope I can then build on that from there. I love the meditative quality of spinning.

Would be nice to find someone locally to help with process as I learn best looking. I would love to keep goats. My husband is almost sold on the idea. ;)

I love the intricate details of celtic art - it seems both simple and complex at the same time.

Gwen Buchanan said...

Denise, Aw, so no wool .. glad you aren't allergic to mohair though.. you will love it. and the fibers are so long and silky and strong... your boys will probably like to help tease .
I know what you mean, it is always easier to be with someone and see first hand how to do it... I am definitely a hands on person myself... If I can ever help please ask.. Good Luck!

When you raise goats from babies, they are sweet pets... but they do like to nibble on your clothes.. oh well... that's their nature..