Archive for February, 2009

Stranger and Savage

Posted in Art, music, writing with tags , , , , on February 28, 2009 by darcyarts

I love Dan Savage. I’m so glad he is in this world.

His paper, Seattle’s The Stranger is a really rad and inviting paper and, of course, you can read it on line.

I am mourning the death of the print newspapers in the news this week.

The Rocky Mountain News and maybe the San Francisco Chronicle. Changes.

Does this mean that the online switch is nowhere as an alternative?

Over at the Stranger there is a fine article on Antony Hergarty of Antony and the Johnsons.

Antony was on Fresh Air in early February. I have been listening to him for a few years. I read a review, possibly in MOJO and knew I had to check him out. He’s ethereal and at the same time wears the cloak of the corporeal in such an uplifting way. His theater is classic and stunning.

Fascinated as I am with the places inbetween strict definitions of gender roles, Antony is my cup of tea.

image from the BBC.

Also a review of  rapper Kool Keith who passed through town. Go check him out on youtube.

The reviewer felt the show was a let down. Keith is a madly imaginative person. He creates intriguing worlds and personae.  Unfortunately, he didn’t  bring the theatrical elements of his imaginative world to the stage. It’s not easy to do. It takes a whole other commitment and talent.

Not everyone is Bowie or Antony.

I believe with some help and more money (not a good time for elaborate stage  design but call maybe he could call Mick Jagger for advice) Kool Keith could put on the show people expect. Maybe he’s trying to cut back on expectations and be himself.

Audiences often prefer the fantasy of the other.

Poe the Goth

Posted in Art, etsy, plush critters, projects with tags , , on February 27, 2009 by darcyarts

juxtaposeanimalsonheadgirlsI like this image.

While working madly at sewing and organizing various parts of the plush cavalcade of cuties I occasionally must take a break.

My old back is spazing out far to often. I know I need to lay on the floor and do yoga regularly.

I’ve added the l’argenine and taurine and minerals to my diet again after checking the internets and reading about possible causes.

Luckily my recurrent back ills are not the topic of today’s post.

I’m on about Edgar Allen Poe. I’ve made a neck charm from the new stamp.

poeaThe slight imperfections in the glass drop adds an antique look.

It looks like a poetic specimen under glass. I found the satin ribbon at The Attic on Wednesday.

I’ll try a purple ribbon on the next one. Maybe lavender.

Why Angelina?

Posted in film with tags , , on February 26, 2009 by darcyarts

She’s sexy if you think that sex appeal = tits and lips. But what about her mind? She was an alienated teenage girl who cut herself for some kind of relief from what? A famous father?

I viewed Changeling the week before the Academy Awards.

I didn’t like the film at all. I thought Angelina’s acting was just ridiculous. Willowy victim. Hand over the big bright red lips, arms crossed over the big low breasts, symbolic of her invisibility? Or is she just trying to add some credibility to her role as a victim by removing those distractions?

Critics have pointed out that she stands out against rather than blends in with the bland, purposely washed out monochromatic backgrounds.

It seems like a one woman show where all the other actors are props or melodramatic villains. I thought the writing was hackneyed. Cartoonishly drawn binary oppositions.

The problem I have with Jolie is that her emoting does not seem authentic. We don’t feel that deep motherly connection. We don’t seem any real-life interaction with her son other than her giving him an old-timey box  of cereal which he prepares for himself while mom gets all dressed up for her job at the phone company and leaves him on his own.

The opening scene is Angelina waking up in the morning turning on the relatively small bedside radio on.

This struck me as sort of an anachronism. The idea of portable radios hadn’t yet come along. Radios were big old pieces of furniture. The smallest table top models were bigger than a breadbox. Somehow I don’t think there were music broadcasts at 7 a.m. in the morning. CBS had been on the air for two years in 1928 and it’s programming did not begin until the afternoon.

Though the set design and hats were nice Jolie’s face and persona just overwhelm and defy the attempt to cast an early 20th century spell on the viewer.

Check the reviews at rottentomatoes where the film earned only a 61 percent positive rating on the tomato meter. I love that site.

Why does everyone think Angelina Jolie is so beautiful and dreamy. She seems self-absorbed and twisted to me. Did you notice that she and Brad weren’t holding hands at the Academy Awards?

Being Catty

Posted in etsy, plush critters with tags , on February 25, 2009 by darcyarts

I love it when catnip squid buyers send me a picture of their felines enjoying the squids!

ifb_fullxfull5500866Etsian, howdoyoudeux, sent this picture of her cat.

Here is the message that accompanied the snapshot.

“A huge success! And a wonderful valentine’s gift for our furry sweethearts. One immediately began gleefully beating the snot out of the squid with front and back paws, while the other taught a serious lesson to the tissue paper the squid arrived in. They’ve both played with it every day since, which is saying something for fickle cats. Thank you!!”


This cat above  looks a lot like my granny’s cat, Sam. Well, except for the long hair on Sam, cat of the north.

samwsquidSam sez, “Go ahead, punk, make my day.”

Kiss My Flow

Posted in Art, dreams, etsy, plush critters, projects, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , on February 24, 2009 by darcyarts


The universe is shining its ethereal light on me.

The co-creator and recipient of my five Albi-like dragons wrote yesterday to let me know the quints had arrived safely.


She gifted her friends with them. They were all very surprised and pleased, she said, and then she proposed a new project!

Her boss at Mail Chimp had seen the dragons and wanted to know if I might try my hand at creating a version of  the businesses icon.

Dude, I get to make this really cute monkey. Am I stoked? In the most excellent way.


I prefer at this stage in my career to do the initial work “on spec” to make sure the client likes it. I make my prototype then send photos. It’s not as risky as it might sound. Stuffed animals are sooo cute they are nearly irresistible.

The client falls in love and then I really get to work making multiple critters.

Endless thanks to the dear English rose, Redd Horrocks, of Atlanta, Georgia!

This work allows me to “meet” warm, bright people and then I have the pleasure of watching the “cute” they’ve commissioned blossom out of fleece and thread and stuffing.

Kisses and hugs to the everyone in the now and in my future. XOXOXO

Squids to Ohio, Homo-loving Commies

Posted in Art, dreams, plush critters, projects, television with tags , , , on February 23, 2009 by darcyarts

Darcyarts got an invite to  contribute items to a bricks and mortar DIY craft shop in Columbus, Ohio last week.

After checking Wholly Craft out online the shop seems to be a solid crafters hub in a thriving community.

The business elements are upfront and secure: contracts, regular payment and updates on how the items are doing.

I ‘m not too crazy about the thought of sending things off that will then wait to be sold (consignment). Giving up a percentage irks the cheap-skate in me as does raising prices to partially compensate. But being part of a community is inviting and participating in an enterprise that empowers crafty women  is good.

I’ll start low and slow and see how it goes.

I was super stoked last night that Sean Penn won the Academy Award for his portrayal of Harvey Milk. I loved his chastising those who voted to pass Prop. 8, giving positive energy to the future of equal rights SOON.

The divinely cute Dustin Lance Black won the award for original screenplay for writing Milk. That is as it should be. Here is a post win interview with a picture.

Here is a link to a site with videos of both acceptance speeches.

Squids Before Awards

Posted in etsy, projects with tags , , , on February 22, 2009 by darcyarts

Super busy today with stuffing squid to put into the mail on Monday. I mailed a dragon to Massachusetts Saturday.

Three additional creations from my Etsy shop sold yesterday. Yeah! I’m working. It’s real.

rpsquida1The rose pink squid came out so nicely and someone could not resist. She sold in a couple of days.

I’m working on a big red squid today.

When finished I’ll settle in to watch the Academy Awards.  Cinema is creamy.

Watched Frozen River last night. Melissa Leo, a long time fave actress is nominated. It was a very good film and not a downer. Misty Upham is great in the film, too. Young Charlie McDermott, who plays Leo’s teenage son, is sweet and full of vim. Aries actors always catch my eye.

I am rooting for Milk and Sean Penn though I hear it’s Mickey Rourke’s and Slumdog Millionare’s year.

Still, in the wake of the empty-hearted passage of Prop 8, I think the academy members may have to give it to Milk or suffer a bad conscience.

Do the Right Thing!

I managed a quick photo shoot with my favorite bitty gnome in the few days of sun we had. A walk to the mailbox revealed the perfect light conditions and viola!

gnomewdandelionverticalaclwatermark1Here’s a cool shot with a beautiful dandelion.

Everybody loves this guy because he looks so happy!

Start Making Sense

Posted in dreams, esoterica, writing with tags , , , , on February 20, 2009 by darcyarts

I would like to preface your reading of Mark Morford’s Chronicle column  by telling you that I never, ever drink anything that contains alcohol, ever. I’m not kidding, and as spaced out as I may seem at times, I haven’t smoked pot in decades.

Morford is not the first to suggest this particular economic solution, In fact I can imagine there are hoards of level-headed Californians who share his opinion.

“Why the hell not?” is a good question.

Settling In to More Time

Posted in Art, dreams, reading with tags , , , on February 19, 2009 by darcyarts

It just may be that I have time to read these days.

I’m driven. I’m an action-Jackson, can’t sit still, gotta work type of gal. Today I stuffed another Giant Red Catnip Squid, packed it and sent it off to Vancouver Island, Victoria BC to a cool Etsian, knottysleeves, who makes beaded sleeves for dreadlocks.

After I made the red squid I cut out four from the lovely pink-rose fleece I couldn’t resist the last time I was at Joanne’s. I sewed four of them. I’ll stuff and photograph one of them tomorrow.

I want to read but almost need to be under the weakening spell of a virus or some sort of lethargy-inducing malaise to slow down enough to do so.

Some types of books are easier to slip into than others.

I can devour anything about life after life, the spirit world or past life exploration.  Biographies and autobiographies are my thing. I love to read about musicians, artists, rebels, iconoclasts.

In my teens I read every hipster and music magazine I came across. After hearing Alan Watts unspool his flawless flowing spiritual logic on the radio I read books by and about him.

In my early 20s I read Carl Jung’s Memories, Dreams, Reflections. Jung’s book is one of the most fascinating things I’ve ever read. I am often preoccupied by contemplating how the physical, mental and spiritual planes of existence intersect.

Two other biographies fired my imagination  at that time.

Those of Jean Cocteau and Aldous Huxley. I was fascinated by that time period. Cocteau was five years older than Huxley. Both died in 1963, Huxley on the day that John Kennedy was assasinated.

Another very interesting person from that time was Coco Chanel. I’ll read a Chanel biography if I can find a very good one.  I found after a look over at Amazon that they don’t come cheap.

I am going to begin a biography of William James. William James in the Maelstrom of American Modernism.

wjaJames covered some of that territory I described where our mind is at odds with our physical limitations.

It should be very interesting.

John Waters Devotional Candle

Posted in Art, etsy with tags , , , on February 18, 2009 by darcyarts

I first toyed with the idea that I might paint about five years ago.

I had tried a few watercolors in 1980. I liked the way they turned out but it was labor intensive. I hadn’t learned to focus my attentions and intentions properly back then.

Photography was fast and immediate, more my style.

I started my real art thing decorating matchboxes and devotional candles.

boygeorge1 They were  modest, semi-useful items. I wasn’t sticking my neck out and rushing to buy canvases, paint brushes, expensive paints.

I wanted to feel that I could justify any expenditure before I did that.

I was unsure of my ability to make faces so I cut them out of magazines and pasted them onto the tiny match boxes.

Glitter, glitter glue, a bit of paint and the crafter’s heroin, Mod Podge. and I was off. I like collage.

maggotbrain1I sold most of the first batch of matchboxes, over a dozen, after a friend turned me on to Esty, in 2008.

I still have three in my shop –Liberace, Che, Isaac Hayes.

annieoakleyI expanded my palette with the addition of inexpensive devotional candles. I bought them at Safeway for about a dollar.

I’d always appreciated the idea of candles with pictures of the saints used to aid heartfelt prayers. You’d pick a saint based on your particular concern and match it to his/her particular area of expertise.

I’ve blogged about this before and mentioned the really cool candle works of Bernd Offerings. Today I’m digging my own John Waters devotional  candle.

jwdevocandlefullJohn Waters is a Taurus. He’s cute, suave and he has a great sense of humor. I think I’ve blogged about that, too.

Stop me if you’ve heard this before.

Film critic, Elvis Mitchell, had John on his IFC program a few years back. They were talking about the relatively recent public acceptance of  Water’s films like Hairspray and Polyester. This was before Water’s had smash hit shows on Broadway, before John Travolta played Edna Turnblad.

Water’s work in the 70s was more radical and the times were more restrictive.

The problem came when commercial outlets  wishing to stock more Water’s films started ordering copies of Pink Flamingos and Female Trouble.  WalMart-like places and grocery stores even put them near the check out counter as a last minute impulse buy, said Waters.

Unsuspecting new Hairspray fans would pick them up, take them home and often at some point in the film, call the cops.

“Call the cops,” said Waters to Mitchell, amazed. “Can you believe it? I mean, I didn’t call the cops when Forrest Gump started running.”


Thinking about John’s saintly area of spiritual expertise is entertaining.

I guess if you had a crushing concern related to bad pulp fiction, realistic Japanese fake food, or creepy crime memorabilia, he’d be your man.

I love John Waters. He’s the best thing ever produced by Baltimore.