Monday, January 31, 2011

DIY Valentines! (Just A Peak)

I decided to hand-make all of my Valentines this year (an exciting project for which I greatly underestimated the scope!)  This weekend, I turned my studio into a veritable Valentine factory and emerged triumphant last evening, though covered in glitter glue. Thanks to a debit card thief, I was low on funds this weekend so I holed up with Hulu and crafted my way to the other side.

Here are a few "sneak peaks" .... <3

Flock of Sparrows.

Love is all you need!


The "xoxoxoxoxo" stamper pictured above is, hands-down, my favorite new crafting supply.  The Crayola twistable colored pencils are definitely coming in at a close second, however...

Happy (almost) V-Day!

Friday, January 21, 2011

Digital Eden = Noisebridge

"Occasionally, a digital Eden appears." 
-Jaron Lanier, "You Are Not a Gadget"

Noisebridge, a collaborative donation-run hacker space in my hood, is what I would call the ultimate creative space.   In one nook, Mission dwellers huddle around the Reverse Engineering Bar while across the way, someone uses the industrial sewing machine to serge a glow-in-the-dark dress.  A colorful, cobbled-together library boasts titles on programming, hacking, and every subculture and microtrend under the sun.  The nearby kitchen typically features a crew of laughing DIYers, whose concoctions keep Noisebridge smelling impressively organic.

In other words, "We make stuff. So can you."

South Wall. Duh.
Steve Jobs' nightmare.
On the third Thursday of every month, Noisebridge hosts "Five Minutes of Fame" (or 5MoF,) a series in which speakers from all areas of expertise get exactly 300 seconds to educate the audience in... well, whatever they want.  Talks this week ranged from Meredith Scheff's "Scarf A Day" project to Ryan Blair's ideas on a "Chaos VPN" for hazardous network deployment. There was a live UStream tour of East Bay hacker space Ace Monster Toys, an impromptu Internet meme sing-along, and the unveiling of some rad new watches developed in Waterloo that sync to one's smart phone.

Most importantly, watching quarters rain from the hacked Coke machine at the back of the room was priceless.

Capacitors for your every need.
Light reading about linear circuits.

If you're in the area, check out their upcoming classes and get-togethers.  As Danny O'Brien said in his talk, everyone is welcome, everyone is a member, and the only guiding rule is to, "be excellent to each other."  Noisebridge truly makes its vast collection of resources readily available to everyone - the possibilities are endless.  

5MoF = Win.
I'm feeling really inspired by something Meredith said in her talk (mentioned above) about the generative, exciting results that can be achieved when an artist challenges themself to make (and complete) something every day.  As she described this, there's no turning back once you reach a certain point in the day - you must commit to the work that you've done, regardless of how much you "like" what it's turned into.  No abandonment, no regrets, just pushing through to the end of a project to see what can happen.  I think this might be interesting for me to apply to my poetry.  Poem a day in February?

Happy hacking!

Friday, January 14, 2011

"I Hang On By..."

One line from this poem has been playing on loop in my head all week.  This beautiful thing is Charles Olson's.

[[I do not doubt the flower exists. Simply, it isn't there.]]

Friday, January 7, 2011

Oh Hello, January!

This week I had the good fortune to stumble upon a gold mine of a stringed instrument shop in San Mateo.  The owner (Dan) runs the store out of his beautiful, hundred year old home.  My fiddle and I paid a visit on Tuesday and had the loveliest time.  Dan got everything polished up and sounding great, and in the meantime I got to play with his awesome dogs and talk local symphonies (which I have excitedly agreed to join after spring semester), blue-grass music festivals, and philosophy.  Today I went back to pick up some new dark rosin and at the end of our conversation, he and his wife recommended, "The Parrots of Telegraph Hill."  Must watch this weekend.

We're in love.
Three weeks left before spring semester! Time to get as much "fun" reading done as possible.  At the moment, I'm halfway through Jillian Lauren's, "Some Girls: My Life in a Harem" which is an easy read of a memoir.  I'm also determined to read David Ebershoff's "The Nineteenth Wife" in this time frame.  Mostly, I wish I hadn't wasted a 4 hour flight trying to slog my way through "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo."  This book bored me to death, and with great irritation I jumped ship around page 430.

Epic Christmas Gift. Spoiled rotten. SO happy.
I can't stop reading this sestina by Steve Davenport, which does so many amazing things I'd really, really love to do.  Lots of fun workshoppy ideas swirling around...  Perhaps I'm more ready to dive back into school than I thought.

Finally, I'm surely making my way through a whopper of a crafting project, inspired by Attic 24, pictured below.  My pattern features a darker color scheme, and when everything's said and done this will cover a queen sized bed.  Really, it's for wrapping oneself up to read in an Ikea chair in a drafty San Francisco studio apartment (though I'm sure it will be given away to someone lovely rather than kept, when finished.)

Lucy's Amazing Ripple Afghan.
Any takers on Mark Zuckerberg's latest plan to create an army?

Feeling scattered in many directions is always January's gift to me.  There are so many things I want to be doing, and there are huge numbers of things I want to accomplish in 2011.  Here's to making it all happen and having a ton of fun on the way!