Archives for the month of: August, 2012

This is an image of the Hokianga Harbour taken last weekend. Yes, we do have an amazing scenery in New Zealand – It is particularly pretty when the sun is shining :) Hope the weather lasts over the next weekend.

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There comes a time, when one has to admit defeat:  It might come as a surprise, but I am not Super woman! :)

It’s strange how life goes in waves. When you are on a high, you seem to be invincible. Everything runs smoothly and is exciting. Then all of a sudden one area turns to shit, then another one and another. Before you know it you are in an avalanche and you can’t do anything about it. In slow motion you see your head approaching the concrete floor.

The beauty about getting older is that you know you will be getting up from the floor again. You only have to bide your time! Though it doesn’t make it any easier while you are on the floor, does it?

Ah, well, at the moment I am well below par, the stress of recent weeks has well and truly finished me off for now. But I have made some plans. The weekend after next I have an appointment with my puppets. I feel a lot of new characters coming on.

Back from the winterless North with a cold. We had a gorgeous weekend, though. No rain while we were there and very mild temperatures. The trees start to have a first dusting of green.

I could spend hours and hours on the farm photographing. I like old sheds with all their forgotten items. This one here is a sheep sharing shed. The farm doesn’t have live stock anymore and the space is now used as “flexispace”, means anything could end up here. I would love to have the space to spread out.

We found this little fellow having a sleep under the rafters. Possums are a pest. They look cute, but do a hell of a lot of damage to the vegetation.

I need to get back into the habit of writing daily, otherwise my blog has a good chance of fizzing out….

We are planning to go up North for the weekend to visit family. The place  is very remote, there is no cell phone reception (goodie, goodie, goodie!) and Internet is still dial-up.  I assume we will be playing Monopoly at night. That’ll be fun.  Of course I hope  I will have some quiet time to take new photographs as well. It’s time for something else – no more birds and flowers :)

I just came back from the Pah Homestead, where I set up my installation for judging. The artwork is finally out of the house on to the next stage. Now, it’s two weeks of nail-biting until the winners are announced on the 3rd of September. In the meantime I have so much catching up to do, not just with my blog. I feel like a Pukeko (that’s the bird shown in the image). They try to fly, but they can only go a short distance and they look even more awkward when they are running…. Very lanky.

First of all I would like to have a good night sleep.

Two weeks ago I learned that I am a finalist in the Wallace Art Awards this year. It took a week for it to sink in, but now I am really savouring the moment. For a New Zealand artist it is not dissimilar to winning lotto.

They give you two and a half weeks to get the artwork to the exhibition space and I can assure you, you need every minute of it. My artwork is an installation made up of 30 individual pieces and this has to be packed in a way that prevents if from getting damaged in transport. Of course it has to be easily packed and unpacked as well as it might be included in a travelling exhibition.

The box ended up being an artwork in itself, but it is finally finished. Originally I had bought a bag of off-cut foam and I wanted to stuff everything in the empty box we had built to size. For a night I sat on the floor packing and unpacking the box, scratching my head and getting increasingly frustrated. Nobody would have been able to make sense of all the bits and pieces, if they indeed found everything hidden between the pieces of foam. Some of the parts are very small. So the choice was either to write a hundred page manual or continue on the design of the box to make it more accessible and tidy. Everyday there was a little addition to the box and finally after two weeks we are finished, just in time to send it off.

Does anybody ever have a deadline with some time to spare? Certainly not me.

So tonight I will be packing it again and this time it will be a breeze.

 

One of my current design jobs is a label for a honey jar. When I was looking through my images, I found this one of a  busy bee working away, bum up, head down! Ah, it so describes my situation. This week was just chaotic.  I didn’t even get round to writing my blog, but I am slowly catching up – phew!

The honey I make the label for has an interesting story: the hives are located on the balcony of the Townhall in Auckland. They only produce  a hundred or so jars a year and I would like to know how it tastes. If you know Auckland, you certainly wonder where the bees can find flowers. Auckland has a lot of parks, but not really around the  Townhall. This part of town is mainly concrete. I have learned that bees can fly 3km for food if need be. Poor little things.

 

I didn’t get around to writing yesterday. I am in a bit of a shambles at the moment.

In New Zealand there is this ad on TV against high speed driving, which has the punch line: “The faster you go, the bigger the mess”.

I am currently well past my comfortable speed and, yes I can confirm, the mess is getting bigger.  There is only one way out… slowing down and working through the pile.

 

In my post yesterday I mentioned the ark we have parked in our front yard. Here is a picture of it. It is such a New Zealand thing to have a boat in the garden. Sadly you don’t see it quite as often as you used to. It was such an expression of the relaxed life-style we used to have… Still, many New Zealanders have life-time projects on the go: Restoring cars, doing up houses, building boats…

This one here is a beautifully hand-crafted wooden catamaran, built by hubby. The image is a few years old, when she had just moved back into the garden for an overhaul. It was taken in the back yard. In the meantime, a bit closer to re-launch day, she has moved around the house to the front. And she will move back into the wonderful Auckland playground, the Hauraki Gulf, before summer, to make room for our next big project…

I am sitting here before I have my breakfast trying to figure out what to write today. The sun is a pale disc behind a thick layer of clouds again, but at least one has the notion of its existence and… the rain has stopped. Last night it was pouring down again and I wondered if we will need to use the ark we have parked in our front yard some time soon. It’s not quite ready yet for the water though.

First I wanted to put up an image of a snowed-under barn in Germany, but then I thought over there it’s summer now and they don’t want to be reminded that they are slowly sliding towards the cold part of the year. It’s better to find a more inspiring image reminding me that next summer will come for certain.

So here is my little sign of spring I took last weekend. I think the little ones must have done something naughty: Papa Swan scratches his beak and Mama Swan looks at them very disapprovingly. (I just can’t stop interpreting animal expressions as human. Sorry!)