Saturday, July 21, 2012

My 1st Flower Mandala Sculpture with Christopher Reitmaier

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My good friend, Christopher Reitmaier, who is an amazing artist, asked me to help him with one of his flower mandala sculptures for the Cathedral Park Jazz Festival.
These sculptures are relatively large and require a fair amount of flowers and since we are both creators of reused materials it was only natural to go the flower warehouse where all the flowers arrive into Portland and dig them out of the trash and give them a new life.
In all fairness, Christopher has done quite a number of these mandalas so he's quite familiar with where to grab these flowers.  I had no idea.  I was his apprentice for this project.

After making a pretty good flower haul, Christopher prepped the flowers and on Friday we both went out to St. John's where Cathedral Park is and got settled in to create the flower sculpture.  I have to say that it was very fun, which I assumed it would be.  Christopher is a very lighthearted, fun fellow and I very much enjoy being around him.
By the way, here is a link to his website.  Please check it out.

Here are some of the photos of the progression of the mandala.

Christopher at his finest wearing the beginning of the mandala's centerpiece.

Christopher, the very serious artist wearing one of his amazing pendants that I love!

Mandala in progress.

Christopher adding petals of color on the greenery.  I made him skip.

He's having Way too much fun!

Documentation that I really did help on the project.

Mandala's centerpiece.

The finished mandala.
It took both of us about 3 hours to create this sculpture.  The people at the festival were really pleased and a lot of people told us how beautiful it was.

We left for a while to grab a bit to eat and then I took off to do some errands.
 I came back about 2 hours into the festival and when I looked for the mandala, it was pretty much gone.  There was nothing but bits of flowers and leaves that the children were playing left.  It was unbelievable.
I have no idea how long it lasted into the festival, but I guess the children took a liking to it and destroyed it.  At least they had fun.  Yet just another example of impermanence in the universe.


Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Guest Speaker at Camp SCRAP

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Today I get to be a guest speaker for Camp SCRAP, which is a one to two week summer camp for the crafty reuse kids or those that want to learn about crafty reuse. Last year I was asked to be a guest speaker, but was unable to due to my work schedule. I am very excited about this talk.
The speaker theme this year is travel and craft. We are asked to talk about a place we traveled to and maybe made a craft item related to that travel. It turns out that in 2007 I went to China for two weeks.  Before I left for China, I came to the conclusion that I would save all the plastic bags that I acquired to make a quilted plastic bag purse out of them. I figured it would be the ultimate souvenir, and I am pleased to say that it is!
Here are some pictures of the final product, which I made a few years ago:

I traveled to China with the instructor of my Taiji school and 10 of the students in my Taiji class at the time. (I am now studying with a different instructor.) We stayed in Beijing for one of the two weeks to learn a very basic Bagua form from a Bagua master there. The hotel we stayed at was lovely. They provided matches that were slightly longer than normal and so was the matchbox. You may have seen this project from an earlier post, but I made another one of my refrigerator treasure boxes to share with the Camp SCRAP campers.
Here are some images:

 Wish me luck!

Friday, July 6, 2012

Happy 4th of July (a couple days late)

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I decided to celebrate my freedom this 4th of July by adding more fun to my car.
I have come to the conclusion that I need to add the shiny mardi gras type beads to the hood of the car, so I added what few I have.  It will be a major work in progress as I slowly come across those beads, probably at SCRAP.  Who knows, maybe I will come across the mother load one of these days.

The other thing I added to my car was some leopard spots and words.  Yep, just random words that popped into my head.  My neighbors were having a bbq, so sometimes one of their words would filter over to my ears and I would then add it to the car.  I had a great time.  The leopard spots and words took about 4 hours, but I had nothing but time on the 4th of July.

Later, around 10, I met some friends on Mt. Tabor and checked out the fireworks.  It was a pretty sweet view.  You could see Portland's fireworks, just barely see Vancouver's fireworks, Sellwood's fireworks and then all the personal fireworks all going off around the same time.  I loved it.  I will have to remember that for next year.

I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday!!!
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