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Visiting, Cleaning & Organizing, & More Feet

This post will be a short one because I really MUST get into the studio and make some art. After all, this trip is all about me teaching other people to make art while traveling!!

Sunday morning I spent several hours writing this blog. Then Margaret and I sat at the dining table for a couple of hours working on small collages with just a little baggie of materials, media, and tools – simulating what we would do in a cafe while touring a city. We found that we did spread out way too much and had given ourselves too much stuff to work with, so we will make changes for the next practice session. I should have asked Ken to take some photos, but I didn’t think of it. One thing I am learning is that it is difficult to always get the photos done and still be present in all the events I take part in. Photographing seems to set me apart from the experience. But, when I then try to write this blog, I don’t have the photos I wish I had.

Sunday night we stayed home. Margaret cooked a delicious salmon recipe and I made roasted veggies. We were all tired, so it was a lazy and early night.

Monday, for most of the day, Margaret and I – with much hauling help from Ken – tackled cleaning out and reorganizing the main room of the house, which serves as living room, kitchen, and dining room. I included photos in an earlier post. What a job!! We filled 3 large garbage bags!! We quit at 4 and headed out to visit Catherine, the artist we met at the vernissage on Saturday night. The photos tell the story. A lovely and interesting woman and a capable and creative artist – we were impressed and had a wonderful time – laughed ourselves silly, too – we found that we were very comfortable with each other – all of us. I wouldn’t be surprised if the relationships continue somehow.

After leaving Catherine’s, we went to visit friends – Jean, Madeleine, and another Catherine. Jean and Madeleine are building a gite, which is a place for travelers to stay. You can investigate the general concept of the gite on the internet to find out more. I wish I had taken some photos, and it probably would have been fine with them, but this visit was almost entirely in French and I was very, very focused on trying to understand as much as I could. I even spoke in French more than usual. They all made me feel so welcome and comfortable that it gave me courage. Wish I could show you…ah well…I will try to do better from now on.

Today, Tuesday, Margaret and I tackled the kitchen/living/dining room again and worked on it till around noon. We are still NOT done, and will continue tomorrow. Two more large garbage bags filled up to be tossed out!! Margaret deserves a medal for HER courage! At 12:30 we had a visitor – Daniele, who we also met at the vernissage on Saturday night. She is Swiss, but owns a summer home near here. She is fluent in French, and her English is excellent and most of our visit was in English. Another lovely and interesting woman.

Around 3 we ate omelets and drank some Chablis – for courage, since we now need to get to the really hard stuff, making some art.

But before I run off: the footnotes!! Carl wrote to me with the photo of his feet in new shoes: “I’m reading your latest post about your opening and all the pictures of feet. So I thought – if I can’t be there in person, I can at least send my feet. So feeling a bit footloose, I snapped a photo of my feet in my new shoes and uploaded it to your blog. I captioned the photo “Carl’s pieds en l’absence.” Okay, I’m not that good with French – I cheated with Google Translate.” Ken suggested that I title it, “Carl hot-foots it to France!”

By the way, I haven’t said enough about how important Ken has been during my stay here. He does it all so smoothly and quietly that I quite take him for granted. He does almost all the shopping, running of errands, and getting meals on the table. He does all the yard work, much of the pool work, and lots and lots of the heavy lifting. He also has a great eye and Margaret and I count on him to take a look at our work – is it done? Also, he is great at philosophical discussions and has wised me up quite a bit about the French personality – not that we rest on stereotypes, mind you, but nations do tend to have their own ways and it is helpful to know what they are.

That’s all I can do right now – Margaret is calling me to the studio.

Please write COMMENTS – I love getting them!!!!!

Catherine's studio.

Catherine’s studio.

Hey students...look familiar? Critiquing is like an addiction, I just can't seem to control it!!!

Hey students…look familiar? Critiquing is like an addiction, I just can’t seem to control it!!!

Ken, Catherine, and Margaret inside Catherine's studio.

Ken, Catherine, and Margaret inside Catherine’s studio.

Margaret and I both liked this one of Catherine's works, but Catherine says it isn't finished. Those of you reading this who are my students, does this sound familiar?

Margaret and I both liked this one of Catherine’s works, but Catherine says it isn’t finished. Those of you reading this who are my students, does this sound familiar?

Carl's pieds en l'absence

Carl’s pieds en l’absence

Amusing myself in the back seat on our way to Catherine's. Kelly commented that there seem to be more feet than art in my blog. But...are the feet photos art? They are certainly a series. Good, bad, or indifferent, I think I will just put one foot in front of the other and see where it goes.

Amusing myself in the back seat on our way to Catherine’s. Kelly commented that there seem to be more feet than art in my blog. But…are the feet photos art? They are certainly a series. Good, bad, or indifferent, I think I will just put one foot in front of the other and see where it goes.

Adding Catherine's feet to the series. Four foot square. Four feet square. We say it both ways don't we? Both language and the use of the square format in art have been much discussed during my visit here.

Adding Catherine’s feet to the series. Four foot square. Four feet square. We say it both ways don’t we? Both language and the use of the square format in art have been much discussed during my visit here.

Kelly
August 29th, 2013 at 12:49 am

Well, the feet definitely have turned into a series! And, I can see photos of feet covering a whole wall of some French gallery, and they will all be saying…those Americans are crazy! Oh, and I forgot to mention, from previous posts, the small collages that were pictured…they have lots of energy, and the colors, blues and yellows just seem to emphasize that energy…..all for now….keep up the good work said the student to the teacher!!! Xo, k.

Vicki
August 27th, 2013 at 5:01 pm

First step I want to take is say hi to Margaret! Nice to see you, even if it’s just in photos. Debi it sounds like your opening was a big hit and it’s so cool to be able to enjoy it through photos. I do understand how it’s difficult to toe the line and have photos for everything – you have been doing an amazing job. We all know you march to a different drummer and it’s such fun to follow you on your blog. Continue having a fabulous and creative time in France!! Hugs,

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Debi Pendell Artist by debipendell.com