Attacked by mechanical ladybugs. At least, it’s better than being rejected by a toaster.

I’m mixing my metaphors again.  Y’all know how that goes.

I’ve been reading Bella Tuscany again; I actually finished it a couple of days ago.  I don’t know why I needed to read this again, but in retrospect, it probably has to do with the way that Frances Mayes talks about the way art is alive and part of the everyday in Italy:  all the local chapels have magnificent icons of Mary and works by Renaissance Masters.

It got me in the mood to create the PowerPoint for Gnome’s Humanities classes and talk about how the definition of art has changed in such drastic ways and how art has inundated the everyday because there are artists that want their art to be part of everyday experience (like the artist consortium poketo) and artists who create monumental works for the everyday like Dr. Evermor (artists who are referred to as “vernacular artists”).  This everyday-ness has become so prevelant that Aestheticians have begun talking about “everyday aesthetics”:  the aesthetics of the hotel, the football game, the places and spaces that we live in every day of our lives.

I have these books that I always return to, that speak certain things to me, that change each time that I read them because, each time I read them, I’m a different person.  They’re battered and torn not because of abuse but because they have been loved shabby like a favorite woobie blanket or a ridiculously ugly acid-green sweater that was bestowed when a dear friend grew too talk for it and given with love because she knew that I would never grow too tall for it and would always love that it was ridiculously ugly ’cause that’s the way I am.

It explains why I have so very many books:  I need them close and physical and accessible.  It’s a physical pain when I desperately need to read something that’s been put away into storage because we don’t have enough book shelves yet or because the dear book-friend I long for has been buried behind so many other books that it can’t be found.

A month or two ago, I had a deep longing to read the first five-ish chapters of Owlsight by Mercedes Lackey because of Keisha.  There’s something about when she abruptly uproots her life with her family to become the town Healer that seemed like the exact thing to celebrate my first year anniversary in Wisconsin, and when Keisha learns to ground-and-shield for the first time, how she talks about never having dreamed of flying but always having dreamed of being an oak tree.  I know how she feels.

I’ve never once dreamed of flying:  I dream of falling, of zombie apocalypses, of far-flung battles, and of a violinist I might have been once-upon-a-time in another life.

But not flying.

Okay, on my Kindle counts as accessible too.  I kinda carry my Kindle with me everywhere because I keep my favorite fanfics on it, ever at the ready:  like A Farm in Iowa.  I think I’ve read this fic (which is like 300-400+ pages long) 5 or 6 times since I moved to Wisconsin—because it always reminds me about finding Home in unlikely places and in unlikely people.

Wisconsin was like that for me.  Wisconsin is my blue-painted bedroom to lay my head down in when I’m cranky and hate the world or my farm after a long life of cranky and being misunderstood.

I like it here, and I like the people that I’ve met here.

So, yeah.  Welcome to the random thinking about books.  There’s thinking coming about The Parasol Protectorate also, but right now, I think that *waves hand* all of the above book-thinking is probably enough.

And, a bit revealing.

*feels exposed*

In a completely unrelated (at least, obviously related) event, I’ve been asked to join a group show at the end of April:  Circus Nerve.

It’s very exciting.  I had met the curator at a show at IQ’s (before it closed), so I know her a little (her name’s Natalie).  Evidently, she had been at the ARTgarage and saw my studio and work and asked me to join the show.


There will be more about this very exciting event as it unfolds.


Courage and cake!

my middle name is procrastination–or was it OCD-tendencies?

So, due to interweb outages were I live, I wasn’t able to really do the post on Tuesday.  Instead, I posted from my cell with promises, promises, promises.


Here were those promises:  the Iola car show (with pictures), Heather Peterson’s Peterman’s bags, teaching at the Art Garage (I know, wtf), and a couple of questions about how artists achieve success.


So, the Iola Car Show.  What does the Iola Car Show have to do with art exactly?  Aside from hosting a car-themed art show, there’s also the matter that cars, in and of themselves, are art.  They are designed for aesthetics as well as function (which is something that I’m always interested in–where form and function meet).  They are a part of our visual culture (have been for quite a long time) and show up from decorations to video games to the drive-way.  They become iconic in visual culture such as the Impala in Supernatural and the Bluesmobile in The Blues Brothers.  Some cars are  so iconic that people even reproduce them for events like the Iola Car Show.


blues brothers

The Bluesmobile.  Just hanging, ya know?

Other pretties that I saw.  Not all of them, mind cause that would be insane.

herbie the love bug

Herbie the Love Bug!  It actually spit water.


Just pretty.

row of cars

This is what I meant about showing all the cars would be insane.  This is a very, very small part of the show.

the car that beats up all the other cars

I <3 this car.  It’s the car that beats up all other cars.

steampunk buick

This car is specifically for the lovely Miss ‘Lain.  It’s so steampunk–if we dumped a steam engine in it or somethings.

sheppard truck farm in iowa

In my  head, this is John Sheppard’s truck in sheafrotherdon‘s A Farm in Iowa series.

funnel cakes and cheese curds

Oh, Wisconsin!  What a magical wonderland where you can get funnel cakes and fried cheese curds within 50 feet of each other!

choose cheese

I want this sign.

demand butter

I also want this sign.

So, this was my Saturday at the Iola Car Show.  It was huge and too warm and kinda awesome.

Second on my crazy, crazy list of promises for this post is the wonderful work of Heather Peterman.  She makes these fantastic bags that originate with paintings that she scans and uploads onto Spoonflower and then orders fabric in order to make bags and pillows and other fabric-y awesomeness.  She sells them at like 7 different places in Green Bay including the Art Garage and at the Wednesday Farmers Market on Broadway.

bird bag


This is, currently, my favorite bag.  The image, unfortunately, is completely craptastic because it was one of those kinda of days.  The thing has like 8 different pockets!


seen about

When I was at the grocer, I saw this lady that had a Heather Peterman bag too!  We are everywhere!

I foresee more of these bags and things in my future.

And, I think I might keep the “teaching at the Art Garage (I know, wtf), and a couple of questions about how artists achieve success” until next week because this post is getting waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay out of hand.