category: art/craft/design inspirations
in 2004 i got a product enquiry email from a woman named kati opening a shop in san francisco not too far from my then-studio. she described her shop as an “enchanted urban garden with forest elements” and mentioned her business partner, penelope firefly, age 19 months. how could i say no to all that?!
this past weekend’s camping trip on the oregon coast with friends included penelope, now 9 years old, her mom, kati, and her younger sister, sabine. we all live in the portland area now. in the past 8 years kati and i have collaborated on many projects together and have become close friends and business confidantes.
from custom murals for her two san francisco shops to my latest anima stuffies and stitch kits, a custom chicken coop gate design, drawing workshops incorporating organic locally grown meals, gardening and farm animals – our projects and interests continue to align, even after all these years.
last summer a customer emailed to ask if she and her friends could do an embroidered interpretation of my black bear for a friend that “lives in South Lake Tahoe CA, volunteers at a nearby wild animal rescue center, has a special love for the bears, and enjoys sewing, knitting, beading, and embroidery.”
today they sent me an image of the finished embroidery! look at those ferns! and clover! and lichen! and doug fir bark! so, so cool!
david goodsell is a scientist, artist and author who studies molecules in the body and depicts them for everyone to understand.
poetic & colorful, these images are also [apparently] extremely accurate.
“This illustration shows a cross-section of a small portion of an Escherichia coli cell. The cell wall, with two concentric membranes studded with transmembrane proteins, is shown in green. A large flagellar motor crosses the entire wall, turning the flagellum that extends upwards from the surface. The cytoplasmic area is colored blue and purple. The large purple molecules are ribosomes and the small, L-shaped maroon molecules are tRNA, and the white strands are mRNA. Enzymes are shown in blue. The nucleoid region is shown in yellow and orange, with the long DNA circle shown in yellow, wrapped around HU protein (bacterial nucleosomes).”
i found these thanks to a talk by drew berry on TED, which i also recommend!
DIY, baby! i love the idea of purchasing the configuration for things and then producing them on-demand in your own home!
a few weeks ago i was able to visit the monterey bay aquarium for the first time in years. they’ve really upped their game display-systems wise! some areas of the aquarium sported moving video image signage and short videos with animal behaviorists, but the creme de la creme was the tiny drifters media wall!
i was too enthralled to take videos myself, thankfully others have and posted it on youtube!
sigh. after all the holiday hullabaloo i’m craving a week alone apparently!
but just look at all the amazing cabins on the modern cabin and tell me you don’t feel the same!
if there’s wifi at the school sale today [see yesterday's post], i’ll be going through each and every page of this blog today!
found via another video on the future of art from brain pickings.
i’m still recovering from my weekend in seattle and trying to restore my home and studio to some semblance of order before crafty wonderland this weekend! see you there?
images from my autumn days here in portland interspersed with excerpts from the kickoff talk of the latest bioneers conference. ideas that are difficult and overwhelming to think about, yet constantly inspiring and ever more prescient every day. just like life.
the nature of nature is change, but sometimes it hurdles into fast forward tripping radical shifts. scientists call it “nature’s regime shift.” for the first time people are causing it on a planetary scale and it can be irreversible, at least on a human timeframe. when people talk about saving the earth, we would better frame it as saving ourselves.
every major empire over the past several hundred years has undergone a predictable cycle of collapse. the hallmarks are always the same: the financialization of the economy, moving from manufacturing to speculation, very high levels of debt, extreme economic inequality, and costly military over reaching.
every empire has had an idiosyncratic ability to exploit a particular energy source that propelled it’s rise to economic power. no empire has been able to manage the transition to the next energy source. the climate imperative today is to transition off of fossil fuels worldwide and it requires the most complex collaboration and urgent passage in the history of human civilization. nothing like it has ever been done.
as paul gilding writes in the great disruption, the science says we physically entered a period of great change, a synchronized yet related crash of the economy and the ecosystem. the great disruption will ultimately take society into a higher evolutionary state. we have the opportunity to build a society that represents our highest capacities, that works with rather than against nature. this crisis presents what may be a once-in-a-civilization opportunity. the severity of the crisis will drive a global response thats mammoth in scale and speed including the biggest economic and industrial transformation in history. the sooner we shift, the more options and the less pain we’ll have.
from chaos theory to the gaia hypothesis, a new cosmology is unfolding. in this paradigm the earth does not revolve around us… to move from breakdown to breakthrough we’re entering into the age of nature. this revolution from the heart of nature leads with a basic shift in our relationship with nature from resource and object to mentor, model and partner.
as janine benyus points out, “nature’s done everything we want to do without mining the past, polluting the planet, or mortgaging the future. the principles appear simple: nature runs on current sunlight, nature banks on diversity, nature rewards cooperation, nature builds from the bottom up, nature recycles everything, life creates conditions conducive to life.
nature also has a profound capacity for healing. the age of nature calls for a new social contract of interdependence. taking care of nature means taking care of people, taking care of people means taking care of nature.
when huge shocks transform the landscape, structures and institutions crumble releasing tremendous amounts of bound-up energy and resources for renewal and reorganization. novelty emerges. it’s a period of creativity, freedom and transformation. these times belong to those who learn, innovate and adapt. the name of the game is resilience… the heart of resilience is diversity. resilience teaches us. decentralized systems create backups and redundancy.