It’s little I care what path I take,
And where it leads it’s little I care;
But out of this house, lest my heart break,
I must go, and off somewhere.

It’s little I know what’s in my heart,
What’s in my mind it’s little I know,
But there’s that in me must up and start,
And it’s little I care where my feet go.

—from Departure, Edna St. Vincent Millay

20 November 2014

aboard the M/V sonofagun, books + poetry

Departure

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Thank you, Miri…I promise that I will never, ever die. ;)

In the Zululand Observer

In my inbox tonight…an interview with Kris by Val Van der Walt of the Zululand Observer, November 14.

amazing people, Inspirations, travel

An article in the Zululand Observer about Kris…

In my inbox tonight…an interview with Kris by Val Van der Walt of the Zululand Observer, November 14.

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paints and pens, stuff i've made, travel

Departure date

9 November 2014

Looked up flights to Manila from Darwin last night (I am stopping by to see my Dad before I head to S. Africa) and they’ve gone up $150 since last week. Pushed by the steadily rising prices of the Christmas season, I bought a seat on the last flight that was under $500: November 23rd, Sunday. After that, prices shoot up another $200.

My Darwin days are numbered. I sure hope immigration issues my passport before the flight date! *nervous, about-to-be-sick laugh*

I spent all last night trying to make a storyboard, for the first time ever, and learn to use some simple video-editing programs, because I’d like videos to be a part of the trip’s creative output. Trying to sync the movie to music was the biggest struggle, but I think I’ve got it figured out now, though that’s only in theory. I don’t know how all you Vimeo Pro Account denizens do it, but I use a stopwatch. LOL Learning a new thing is always exciting, and I’ve recently taken on two new obsessions: watercolours and a GoPro. That’ll keep me busy (and too distracted to be seasick, I hope!) for a long time.

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amazing people, Australia, craftiness, Darwin, my friends

Three-day retreat

cycad

N.B. I wrote a long blog post about this, right after it happened, but failed to save my typing and lost it all when my browser crashed.

In early October I spent three days, two nights, with the glass artist Meng Hoeschle and her delightful, multilingual husband, Herb. I was put up in a second, smaller house on the other end of their 5-acre property, and told to “relax”.

It was quite funny, me not knowing how to do that. I hadn’t brought any current project (as I didn’t realise I’d be in a separate house, and who wants to unload a heap of things onto someone else’s dining table, engage in something as unsocial as painting, or make a big mess?) so I was rather at a loss for ways to spend my time, while I was alone. I don’t watch television, so didn’t even check to see if it was plugged in. I had a lot of showers, they were definitely luxurious—the bathroom was as big as my bedroom/workspace on the boat!—and I took Nana naps! I tried to draw a little bit, but this was early days for my sketchbook pages and I lacked confidence.

The best part of my time there was, of course, the hours spent in conversation with Meng, and with Herb. If I wondered, on the first night (lying in the white cotton bedsheets, in the air-conditioned bedroom, surrounded by the deep silence of a night on the rural outskirts of Darwin) what the heck I was doing there—in a spotless modern cottage like a resort’s—I had the answer by breakfast the next morning.

Life sends you teachers when you need them. Both Meng and Herb were reservoirs of wisdom and joy, and I cried often during our conversations.

Meng and I talked late into the night, in her studio like an alchemist’s laboratory, while she moved briskly about the room, cutting sheets of glass, enameling them, then putting them into the kiln to slump. We talked about art, about craft, about putting yourself into your work, about the value of such work beyond measuring sticks like money or time. From the rafters, tinkling glass discs and globes trapped or threw ensorcelled lamplight out into the darkness of cycads and gum trees surrounding the house.
sea wall by Meng Hoeschle

I fell in love with one of her pieces, that I have named Sea Wall, because looking through it is a bit like looking at a cross section of foaming ocean, and I love the submarine light that filters through it. The next day, Meng chose another of her works to give me…this one a turquoise tumbler that looks like the moment when a drop hits the surface of a tropical lagoon, frozen in time. It was still warm from the kiln, from the night before, and she wanted me to have something whose making I had witnessed.splash by Meng Hoeschle

Twice, during my stay with the Hoeschles, I was given the bulge and nuzzle of the sea to hold. Precious, precious pieces, representing their two radiant souls, and the gifts they gave to me, of courage and curiosity, of essence and message.

Today, because I cannot take them with me, I took these photos, and then wrapped each piece up in layers of bubbles and brown paper, for when we get back.

Thank you, Meng & Herb.

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art + design, blogging, life, travel

About schizzograffia

The ABOUT page on schizzograffia is finally up…click on the image to view larger

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Australia, paints and pens, stuff i've made, travel

Some changes…

3 November 2014

I finished working for Jacksons Drawing Supplies last Friday. A bittersweet occasion. Wonderful to have tied up that loose end (and feel, more strongly, that things are happening), but I took many a longing, backward glance at that Aladdin’s Cave of art materials that was my “home away from home” for two years. Even harder to say goodbye to the beautiful people who work there—though we haven’t quite parted, yet…there will be a few more get-togethers for “The Jackson Five”, before I actually, physically leave Darwin.

My passport application went in today…two weeks is the usual processing time. Plane tickets right after that. Which means I have two weeks to finish packing, clean the boat up for her next occupant, and get the hell out of here. (Deep, deep, deep inside me, there is a tiny voice screaming at the top of its lungs in panic.) It’s okay, I’ll be ready…if I can stop obsessing over my new blog for a few days, and resist the temptation to drop everything and paint another page in my sketchbook, which is coming along as effortlessly as my luggage and housework are NOT.

3 November 2014

There’s almost nothing left in my ETSY shop…a couple of Kris’ Monsoon Dervish, a handful of his Out of Census, and some Matryoshka journals, maybe half a dozen cards…everything else has been sold, between ETSY shoppers and folks around Darwin who’ve heard I’m leaving. If you bought something from me, recently, THANK YOU! It’s all gone into the savings account for the trip. I actually saved enough to not feel so worried, anymore…a huge load off my mind.

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