Chiarina Loggia

A printmaker's progress


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Island Tapestry


Island Tapestry

Island Tapestry

I put the finishing touches on this piece today, gluing and tying the beach stones that anchor it firmly to the sea. I hadn’t planned on this being part of my 100 Days of Facing The Coast project, but with the many seaside images in the piece I thought it would fit in nicely. The center Botticelli inspired image, captured at the seashore, is a reminder of Venus’ birth in the sea. If you look closely at her face below, you will see many fine white lines in it, glittering like dried seasalt on skin that has been kissed by the sun after a swim.

 Island Tapestry, detail 1

Island Tapestry, detail 1

The pattern of images is reminescent of a kimono with obi, my personal nod to another island I have been privileged to call home and which has left an indelible mark on my senses and my heart. More details below.

Island Tapestry, detail 2

Island Tapestry, detail 2

Island Tapestry, detail 3

Island Tapestry, detail 3

Island Tapestry, a 26″x34″ paper scroll with photopolymer gravure etchings, bamboo and stones, is offered at $650 this week.

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Photo Fridays – Hobbiton – There And Back Again


Hobbiton

Hobbiton

One of the highlights of my recent trip to New Zealand was being able to visit the Hobbiton movie site. It was left as just a shell after the filming on LOTR finished but with the Hobbit production it has been restored to its former glory and left intact for visitors to flock to.

The attention to detail on the site is astounding. Every hobbit house is lovingly created with signs of habitation and use, even smoking chimneys and fresh baked bread. The walking tour is nice and leisurely with guides who are friendly and knowledgeable (although with hardly any new info for this die-hard Ringer), pointing out details that probably never even made it into the movies. The stopover at the Green Dragon was wonderful. So authentic and so many little touches, like a framed poem from the book, that made it quite enchanting. Still drooling over the huge cookie and ginger beer and cider on offer there.

The Green Dragon

The Green Dragon

Best of all was standing right in front of where it all begins, Bag End, with the door left invitingly open (despite the “no admittance except on party business” sign). The interior is unfortunately not there, as this was a separate movie set. I did learn that the tree on top of Bag End is not real! Could have fooled me! It is however painstakingly replicated from a real tree.

Bag End

Bag End

Then there is the party tree, which you can see right below Bag End, just like it appears in the movie, and this one is as real as it gets. Quite amazing that this location was found in the heart of a private farm. All that needed doing was remove the sheep and plant some greenery and you have Hobbiton.

The Party Tree

The Party Tree

The last hobbit house on the tour is Sam’s, with the bright yellow door. It’s just down from Bag End, as it is in the book. It is easy to imagine him running up to Bag End frequently as a youngster and later as gardener to the Bagginses. Of course in the book he ends up living in Bag End too but in the movie we see him returning to his own home at the very end of the movie. I must confess I got a little choked up standing in front of that door, thinking of Sam brokenheartedly returning home from the Grey Havens without Frodo, to be consoled by the warm welcome of his family and sighing “Well I’m back” as he enters through the door. And I thought of how, in his later life, after Rosie has passed away, he too would leave Bag End to follow Frodo into the West.

Sam's House

Sam’s House

There are no hobbits left in Hobbiton, but it is easy to imagine them just out of sight or happily inside their homes as you wander through. If you ever get down to New Zealand be sure to visit Hobbiton in Matamata as part of your Middle Earth adventure.

More photos of Hobbiton can be seen here.

Great weekend to all!


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Music Mondays – Born To Sing


Today’s offering is a hauntingly beautiful song by singer/songwriter Lana Del Rey who bears an uncanny resemblance to the young Ann-Margret though her voice is more reminescent of Judy Garland‘s. She is definitely born to sing!

The video for Born To Die is quite intriguing and includes some beautiful filming at the Palace of Fontainbleu in France. I received the cd of the same name for Christmas and have been enjoying it immensely. Hope you enjoy this song too!


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Tuesday Tales – Two In The Wood


 Two in the Wood

Two In The Wood

Today is my birthday and as I count my blessings, not only do I run out of fingers and toes, but one of them stands out shining brightly. So I dedicate this post to D, who shelters me in his home in the woods and in his warm, abiding heart.

This piece was created several years ago when I first began exprerimenting with monotypes. It is primarily brayer and palette knife work with added collage of printed handmade papers. The contrasting light and dark elements is a study of opposites attracting and complimenting each other, allowing each to shine against one another. It has special meaning for me today as I was gifted with this beautiful quote.

“I will love the light for it shows me the way. Yet I will endure the darkness for it shows me the stars.”
Og Mandino

Two in the Wood, a 10″x12″ monotype on 15″x20″ paper, is offered this week at $200, unframed.


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Music Mondays- Still


Room With a View

Room With a View

This week’s song is one of my favorites from a band which is generally not known for their mellow sound, but when they do acoustic they do it like nobody’s business!

Still by Foo Fighters. Enjoy!


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Music Mondays- Dreaming In Color


Dreaming in Colour

Dreaming in Colour

This week’s song is Better Man by Pearl Jam. It’s one of their most famous and well loved. With deceptively simple lyrics it packs a punch and leaves itself open to a wide range of interpretations as seen here. The video below is the album version with lyrics.

These are the lyrics, by Eddie Vedder, lead singer:

Waitin’, watchin’ the clock, it’s four o’clock, it’s got to stop
Tell him, take no more, she practices her speech
As he opens the door, she rolls over
Pretends to sleep as he looks her over

She lies and says she’s in love with him, can’t find a better man
She dreams in colour, she dreams in red, can’t find a better man
Can’t find a better man
Can’t find a better man
Oh

Talkin’ to herself, there’s no one else who needs to know
She tells herself, oh
Memories back when she was bold and strong
And waiting for the world to come along
Swears she knew it, now she swears he’s gone

She lies and says she’s in love with him, can’t find a better man
She dreams in colour, she dreams in red, can’t find a better man
She lies and says she still loves him, can’t find a better man
She dreams in colour, she dreams in red, can’t find a better man
Can’t find a better man
Can’t find a better man
Yeah

She loved him, yeah, she don’t want to leave this way
She feeds him, yeah, that’s why she’ll be back again

Can’t find a better man
Can’t find a better man
Can’t find a better man
Can’t find a better man

Finally this is an awesome live version. Watch how the audience takes over the singing and how it builds to a dynamic mind bowing climax! I’m seeing Pearl Jam in December and can hardly wait!!! As other fans have said “Can’t Find a Better Band”!

Would love to hear your impressions of the song and its lyrics. Some say Eddie Vedder wrote it specifically about this parents’ relationship but I think it resonates with people on many levels, as all good art does.  For my part I feel it’s a place we all find ourselves in sometimes in our lives, unhappy in a situation but unable or unsure how to get out of it. So we settle or lie to ourselves that this is as good as we can expect, all the while dreaming of better things.

Ps, the artwork, Dreaming in Colour, is a recent piece. I chose it to include it in this post because of its title and use of red, though the interpretation of it can be as wide ranging as that of the song.