Friday Five

As I revel in the beautfy of autumn ~ on this 32 degrees Celsius day ~ I sit here contemplating what really makes me happy.

Lists make me happy.

So how about I make a list of the things that make me happy…  Makes sense in a roundabout sort of way, doesn’t it?  So, in no particular order, here we go.

1. Art.

It amazes me how certain artists can touch, move and inspire me to such a degree.  How can a picture make you feel so good?

2. Humour

Laughter is so very important.

3. Stylin’ Organisation

A collection of books arranged by colour is very visually appealing.   I quite like this idea.  Not entirely practical, which goes against a few of my design principles, but I am almost willing to overlook these issues on the basis of aesthetics. (My husband would not be surprised by this stance:).

4.  Felt

Ahh, felty goodness.  Makes me want to curl up with bunch of it and some thread, tea and time.

5. The thought of my husband and son at home, right now, playing together.

A little soppy I know, but the thought tugs at my heart strings.

Well, that was kind of fun.  Maybe I aim to make this a sort of weekly ritual.  Friday sounds like a good day to round up a list…

{please note: all images link back to their sources}

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I See Flowers…

Stumbled across a documentary that featured a rather unusual entry at a flower show… Apparently the rules had been “relaxed” and James May (of Top Gear fame) was allowed to create a “Plasticine Paradise” at the Chelsea Flower Show.

What a STUNNING entry it was.  He invited children, artists and war veterans to contribute and the result was just beautiful.  I know it took place last year, but it’s new to me and hopefully inspirational to a few others.

One of the most amusing parts of the documentary was watching the judges absorbing the bounty of colourful (albeit unreal) flowers in front of them.  “Where are the flowers?” one asked seriously.  James seemed quite bemused that they couldn’t grasp the concept – at all.  He received a 30% handicap due the lack of living plants.  He eventually received a congratulatory medal (which they knocked up overnight for him out of plasticine).  I believe he won the people’s choice award…  Anyway, I found the whole idea just brilliant. Very novel indeed.

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Typography Love

I just love the written word.   Add a little style to this form of communication and you can create something that makes me all warm and fuzzy inside.  How is it that even random words can generate such satisfaction?  A few odd words, be they in your own tongue or not, can make you smile or make you sad.  I believe a huge amount of this has to do with the style and format that is used in their delivery.   If even a single letter can stimulate/evoke a mood/play a part in the ambience of a room, you have to wonder how much of it relates to sheer function and how much is an intrinsic, art based response.

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Atoms & Art

The word nano is Greek for “dwarf.”  A nanometer is one-billionth of a meter.  It was only in 1981 that an invention called the Scanning Tunneling Microscope allowed scientists to see the topography of atoms. What has this to do with art?  A lot, if such visuals are used as inspiration.

Today we attended a symposium at Curtin Uni entitled strange futures: collaborations that make nano-art. What an inspiring few hours. (The experience was cut short as we ended up taking it in shifts… Bean didn’t find it quite as enthralling).

For me, the most fascinating thing about these forms of art is the paradigm shift that occurs as the audience recognises that the piece is science-based but oh so pretty.  The exhibits in the gallery where just scintilating.  It’s great that there is no sense of explanation around the works – it’s all about the engagement of the audience.  And suddenly, science is art.

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Becoming At Home

We moved in to a new house a few weeks ago.   It is small, old, en route to being demolished and we were lucky enough to have it offered to us rent free (!!) for a year until it is no more.  The luxury of being able to do whatever you wish to a house is quite huge.  The block itself is big, lending itself to a range of different opportunities.  The mulberry tree in the corner of the backyard is so big it is serving as a double carport.

A massive flurry of cleaning and wallpaper-stripping and painting took place – and then we moved in.  We are still in the midst of nesting and making it as cosy as possible, but as corners become sorted I will post some before-and-after photos.  For impressive they shall be…

There are lovely plans for various projects; Mo intends to create a vegetable patch, the kids have an array of paints to splash around (anywhere!)…
More ideas include a massive Inspiration Board (Jordan Clarke has some great suggestions) , a big splotch of blackboard paint in the kitchen, and numerous garlands.
I think there is room for a couple of chickens.  And a toddler-friendly playground – I am really liking the notions in the Places for Play Exhibition, especially this one in Frysja, Norway.

Where to start, where to start…

Ultimately, I hope this new home manages to reflect our family – creative, busy and practical.  We have so many hobbies – from computer games (Lord of the Rings and Sims 3 are the go right now) to badminton (must find a more practical position for the net than between the Hills Hoist – don’t you love them! – and a mandarin tree) to golf (I am hoping to find room for a small putting area) to sewing.  Reflect the family and all our interests – and still manage to have style.  There is the challenge.

This challenge is also made tricky by a couple of other issues – the fact we have basically no spare money, and not enough space to fit in all of our stuff and all four children.   If we were minimalists (that’s a dirty word around these parts) with a healthy budget I would love some of the spaces to look like photographer Rion Nakaya’s – as seen here.  If I were to attempt to cater to both of our tastes I would probably be a little less retro-orientated…   Mo, being a disliker of all things vintage (styles that reflect his childhood are something that should be left in the past, apparently), would probably appreciate something a little more postmodern and earthy.  Minus old-school.  But, like in every happy relationship, there will be certain compromises. Fortunately we do possess simliar tastes in almost everything. (else).

Visit regularly for updates as we (quickly) settle in.

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right now

I am

aching  for the warmth of spring that will soon exhale its breath and make the air smell sweet

hoping  to squeeze in a trip to the beach tomorrow (for the first time in months!)

nibbling  on a mint slice as I sip on strong, hot and tasty tea

concocting   a number of art projects in my head (bunting? painting? fimo?) and
wondering  how I will find the time to create them

craving  a new book to become immersed in

trying to avoid  looking up any travel blogs for fear of getting an unaffordable destination stuck in my head

missing  the smell of my baby’s head (work days are tough)

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