I love to get things in the mail that are actually For Me- not just sent to me because I live at my address. What's even better is when the mail does not consist solely of bills and notices from school. I am a Person of Many Hobbies, and currently I'm engaged in swapping things through the mail. This means that not entirely random but certainly intriguingly unknown items arrive at intervals in my mailbox. Currently I am involved in the free exchange of teabags, magazine articles, homemade envelopes, "cute socks," items from India, creative writing prompts (in the form of a fortune-cookie fortune and an evocative photo image), a small soft handmade toy, and a few others. Since it is contained in the swapping ethos to amuse and entertain the swapper at the other end, it's a good workout for creativity and generosity muscles. One swap consisted of one item to each of five partners. The categories were something: a. Orange b. Sweet c. Cosmic d. Whimsical and e. Odd. I challenged myself to send out items that contained at least 2 of these qualities at once. Most recently I joined a swap where the participants create a brochure, postcard and souvenir to promote a vacation is some otherworldly location...
Steve O’Loughlin’s Multicultural Interlace
Artist Steve O’Loughlin applies his exuberant Celtic knotwork-infused style to brightly-colored and individually shaped acrylic on wood wall pieces. His art has been featured in a textbook for Scottish high school students as an example of contemporary Celtic art. He has recently begun to work on commissions for libraries, recreation centers and other public spaces. I spoke with him over lunch at Philippe’s (hey, why not?).
The Huntington Library and Gardens have several marvelous stones displayed in their Japanese Gardens. The ones that fascinated me particularly come from the Eel River in Northern California and are so smooth and pleasant to look upon that they captivated me entirely, and I began to make plans to visit the Eel River solely for the purpose of seeing the parent rock material that these stones sprung from. Well, I haven’t made the journey yet, ...