The Inspiration Behind “Bird Series: Part VI”

If you follow Marzipan Road on Facebook, you will know that both of the new Bird Series pieces that I showed you earlier in the week are now SOLD in Corner Brook!  Yay!

But I hadn’t yet talked about the inspiration behind piece number six so I thought I would still do that.

Number Six wasn’t really supposed to exist.  The original intent was for there to be five pieces in the series.  The first two were framed together and then I was going to frame the last three together.  But then I changed my mind and decided that I wanted to continue framing them in sets of two.  That meant I had to create one last piece.

The inspiration for the first five pieces was obvious to me:  my husband, my daughter, my newly born son, my sister and my good friends.  The more I thought about it, the more obvious the sixth piece became to me too.  I didn’t have to think too long and hard to come up with the final really close “person” in my life.

DSCN6802

This was my Mowgli.  He was my cat for almost fourteen years.  You couldn’t ask for a better furry pal.  He was definitely devoted to me and truth be told I was pretty devoted to him too.  He followed me everywhere, always sat beside me and basically was my little shadow.  He had a lot of quirks- his purr was more of a snort, he loved little licks of ice cream, he was a fabulous mouser and he always knew when I needed a good cuddle and he would quite patiently let me cuddle him.  He was there for me through quite a lot of ups and downs and I could always count on him no matter what.

Sadly he passed away a couple of years ago.  I still can’t believe it has been that long.  There are still times that I sit down and expect him to jump up beside me.  I often think that if he were still alive my son would think he was pretty cool.  Mowgli was so good with my daughter that I think he would even put up with being mauled by the little guy.

So, my old friend, this piece is dedicated to you.  Miss you tons.

This is officially the end of the Bird Series.  But I am starting to mull a new series of small pieces that I will fit in between the bigger pieces I’m preparing for next year’s exhibit!  Stay tuned!

Karen

Hand Hooked Rug by Karen D. Miller

The Birds are Framed!

My sister was in town last week (yay!) which meant three things:

1.  We hung out together and had a great time

2.  I didn’t get a whole lot of work done (which isn’t necessarily a bad thing as a break is good from time to time!)

3.  My husband had to put a push on to frame the remaining Bird Series pieces.

Here are Parts III and VI framed together:

Hand Hooked Rug by Karen D. Miller

My husband is awesome at coming up with new and interesting framing configurations.  I think these look really interesting and set off the pieces nicely.

And here are Parts IV and V framed together:

Hand Hooked Rug by Karen D. Miller

The frames are custom-made using driftwood that we found when we were in Newfoundland back in June.  The actual hooking portions measure 5″ x 7″ each.  The birds are made from local birch bark.

Both of these pieces made the trip back with her and will be appearing in the near future at the Harbour Grounds coffee shop in Corner Brook!

I promised awhile back to tell the story of the inspiration behind Part VI so I will do that later this week as a final wrap-up to the Bird Series.

 

Karen

Super Exciting News about an Exhibit!!

Remember  I mentioned here that while I was down at Sauder Village in August I met four other incredibly talented Celebration finalists who were all from Ontario?

And remember I mentioned here that I was working on something BIG behind the scenes?

Well, I am now thrilled and excited to announce that the five of us:

Gunda Gamble

Trish Johnson

Simone Vojvodin

Kathryn Taylor

and me  🙂

 are doing an exhibit together next year!!!!

How did this come about you might ask?  Well after we returned home from Ohio I was saying again to my husband how great the show was and how nice it was to have met so many finalists from Ontario.

“I don’t know why you aren’t all doing an exhibit together,” he said.

Hmm.  After some mulling of logistics I decided to broach the subject with the others and thankfully they didn’t think I was crazy and in fact were quite keen!  After researching a few galleries that I thought would be a good fit for our work, pinning down the details, working on an exhibit proposal and lots of emails back and forth between the five of us, we signed a contract this weekend with The Niagara Pumphouse Visual Art Centre in beautiful Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario!!!

Our exhibit will run from October 4th, 2014 until November 28th, 2014.  There is still much work to be done and many, many pieces to be hooked.  But I am super, super excited and I think the other ladies are too!

I am sure I will be sharing much more about this over the coming year as we prepare for the show!

Karen

I’m in a Book!

I FINALLY get to share something rather than just hinting at it!

I’m in this book!

I’ve been keeping this under wraps for a very long time now.  In fact, I submitted my contribution the night before I went into the hospital to have my son.  So it is kind of ironic that my copy of the finished book arrived in my mailbox the afternoon of my son’s Birthday, one year later!

This book is all about hooking with yarn, which is what I use in all of my pieces.  You may be familiar with Judy Taylor’s first two books on this subject.  In this, her third, she goes beyond the basics and gives a ton of information on advanced techniques in hooking with yarn and dyeing yarn.  She has done a great job organizing the book and there are some terrific featured artists!

This is just a sneak peek at my section of the book (you can find me at pages 134-140).  I love the layout of my section and I think Judy did a great job in choosing what I think are some of my best pieces to showcase in the book.

To see more, you’ll have to buy the book.  🙂

It is available on Judy Taylor’s website.  And if you are in the U.S. it is also available on Amazon.com.  Unfortunately it isn’t on the Canadian Amazon.  🙁

Such a thrill to be a part of this!

Karen

To My Boy…..

It has now been almost a year that I have known you.  Oh, how much has changed in that year!  What a little person you have become!

And now at the one year mark, I can’t help but think back to this.  How I had some trepidations about having a little boy in my life.  I had some preconceived notions of how it would be and how my relationship would be with a little boy.

One year later, my bugaboo, and I take it all back.  All of it.  I was so, so wrong.

I totally believed it whenever I heard people say that “boys are a little slower at hitting the developmental milestones than girls.”  Heck, I’ve even said it to people myself before you came on the scene.

I take it all back.  Every little bit of it.

There is absolutely nothing slow about you my boy.  You have been saying words for months now.   I have no doubt that within a few short months you will be talking up a storm and learning your letters just like your sister was at that age.  You know what we are saying and you can point to things that we say. You love to make us laugh.  You are standing and pulling up and climbing stairs.  There is not a slow bone in your body my boy.

The other thing that I was wrong on?   That relationships would be more difficult with a boy.

I wouldn’t trade you for anything.  You fit right into our family.  You already have an incredible relationship with your sister and you know what, I truly believe that you always will.  Want to know why?  Because love and friendship exudes from every corner of our home.  And I know that the two of you will carry that with you wherever you go.

As for your relationship with me, you are actually even more “mama-centered” than your sister ever was at that age.   You reach for me with big open arms and say “mama.”   You gravitate to me and hug me and you love your mama kisses.

And as to the future of our relationship, I’m not worried anymore bugaboo.  I’ve got my eye on a few really good role models.  Mama’s who have a really good and close relationship with their adult sons.  I’m learning a lot and I think you and I will be just fine.  In fact, I look forward to those days when you still come to me.  Maybe not with big open arms and saying “mama” but when you come to me to talk about things in your life and in the world.  Real talks about real things.  A relationship based on mutual respect and a whole lot of love thrown in for good measure.

But until then, I’m going to take all the cuddles and kisses that I can get from my best boy. I’m going to enjoy all of our little moments and all of our big moments and all of the moments in between.

Can’t wait to see what the next year brings,

Love, Mama  xoxo

Surrounded in Silver….

The past two weeks have been super busy.

First, I put in a lot of hours to the awesome-but-secret- project that I alluded to before.  It looks like it really will come together and happen.  And once it is absolutely for sure I will share it here.  It is so unbelievably exciting, and involves more than just me.  That’s all I want to say so far….

I’ve also spent a lot of time at the school volunteering.  I did that a lot last year and loved it and am loving it again this school year.  So cool to get to know the teachers and the kids and spend even more quality time with my own kids. All the kids know me now and when they look excited to see me it makes me feel like a pseudo-celebrity.

And this past weekend we had a big party for my little man who is turning one!!  Babies everywhere, big kids everywhere.  Lots of chaos but so much fun.  Loved seeing him eat cake for the first time.  Reminded me of my daughter’s 1st Birthday party and so funny that a lot of the big kids at this party were the babies at her party.

And I have sketched out not one but two pieces.   I sketched out the first and then came up with an idea for a part of it.  But that idea required me to order something special.  So in the meantime I sketched up piece number two so that I could get started.  Piece number two is using a lot of silver, of all things.

I don’t think I ever thought I would one day do a piece that is primarily shiny silver.  Here’s hoping it works out!

Karen