News & Notes from Cameron

The Coronation Carpet - November 2009


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Photos: Coronation Carpet

The Ardabil and Coronation carpets - two stellar examples of Persian carpet weaving - are on display at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art through January 18th .   I urge all fiber enthusiasts to grab the opportunity to visit the museum, as these carpets are rarely exhibited due to their size and sensitivity to light. I am told that the Ardabil carpet is the more famous of the two, but  found the Coronation carpet to be much more intriguing. The fanciful motifs include jaguars and dragons peeking out from the foliage. On a "serious" carpet, it's fun to see such whimsy!

A Colorful Adventure with Loom and Shuttle - October 2009


The first weekend of October brought me to  San Francisco and Berkeley for a three-day series of workshops sponsored by the Loom and Shuttle Guild. Thanks to Southwest Airlines' still generous baggage policies, I brought suitcases full of yarns for Color in Cloth, Spice It Up,  and Hands On Color. Over 40 people participated in the Saturday seminars, and then a smaller group met in a member's beautiful home overlooking the bay for the  two day Hands On Color (above).   Over the last decade, many weaving guilds decided to broaden their reach into all things fiber,  but Loom and Shuttle made the decision to stay focused on weaving. As a result, serious weavers from all over the Bay Area support this guild.  I worked with  all skill levels - what they had in common was a respect for one another  and a love of the craft.  I'll look forward to seeing many of these weavers at the Conference  of Northern California Handweavers in April 2010!

Stripes and Scottish Sheep - September 2009

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I enjoyed a fun Saturday early in the month with the Creative Weavers Guild in San Diego, CA. There were familiar as well as new faces - as I was a juror of their 50th anniversary exhibit at the Mingei Museum several years ago and have presented previous programs. We explored both the left and right brain in two seminars - Ready, Sett, Go and Simply Stripes. Later in  September,  my husband and I visited Scotland for the first time - we toured Johnstons of Elgin, a cashmere spinning and weaving mill that was founded in 1797! Sadly, no photos were allowed there, but I did get plenty of pictures of Scottish sheep breeds as we toured the countryside.

Getting Started - August 2009

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We all face it - how to get started on new work if we're not quite sure where we're headed. To quote Nike, "Just do it!" Really - starting and making something, even with no end in mind, gets the juices flowing. There are months when I have no studio time, and in order to transition back into a "studio mind-set" I weave samples. Last month I transitioned into studio time with a double-weave color study, where the two warps are different in hue but close in value and intensity. The sample was sett for a weft-dominant cloth, and the challenge I gave myself was to select weft colors that blended with the value of the warps to make blocks of solid color. I now have a wonderful long strip of vibrant delicious colors, and decided to scale up a few and weave some much-needed pillows for the family room. While weaving the pillows, I'll be thinking about where I want my next series of art pieces to take me.

Note: I finished these color study pillows in September, and entitled them the Anni and Josef series. In a moment of true serendipity, Issue 30 of Selvedge featured an article on "Josef Albers, married to the unsurpassed weaver, Anni Albers, and it seems natural that his ideas translate perfectly into a textile designer's sensibility."

Colors in the Canyon - June 2009


In a recent trip to Arizona, my husband joined me in Sedona's Oak Creek Canyon for the weekend. We discovered that Sedona's rocks and foliage offer a breathtaking color study in complementary hues. From the dramatic scale of cliffs and pines to an intimate cluster of wild flowers by the side of the trail, the interplay of reds and greens is a constant theme.

Some believe that Sedona is home to several vortex sites - hot spots of natural energy that invigorate the human spirit. The dynamic vibrations unique to complementary colors surely contribute!