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Awwwwww yeah. In July I taught a week-long art/science class for middle schoolers called Inflatable Worlds. It was through Alliance for Youth Achievement, and if you're in San Jose, check it out for your kids next year. The camp is called Art & Design Thinking Camp, and it runs for 6 weeks, each week a different topic and teacher. And I teach there!

We used patterning skills from sewing, but instead of filling things with stuffing, we used air. That gave us room (ha!) to make things bigger. We spent the week learning about different ways of constructing with light plastics, trying our best to reuse plastics we already had.

The best example of no-waste art was the plastic collage, which lead to us making some great upcycled plastic tote bags. It was so fun, I decided I'd do a whole class on it for teens and adults!

Plastique Collage Tote Bags is a 3-hour workshop at my studio in San Jose. I'll do the first one on September 16, from 10am-1pm. All materials provided, and no sewing experience necessary. The focus of the class will be on experimenting with a familiar but new material (discarded plastic), learning how to heat weld and designing the panels for the tote bag. I will help with the sewing for those who have not used a sewing machine before. You'll leave with a gorgeous unique bag, and the confidence to play and experiment into the future.

A pink plush bear with a rainbow on its tummer with  needle and thread protruding. More sewing equipment can be seen around it.
A plush teddy bear either in the process of being taken apart or put back together in UnStuffies class at Art and Design thinking Camp.

Two stuffies, a unicorn and Peppa the Pig have switched heads. On a background of vertical orange and yellow stripes.
Peppa pigs and unicorns switch heads in FrankenStuffies.

A pink carebear has had longer pink arms added to its body. Scissors and a pincushion lay nearby.
Carebear got some new, longer arms in Frankenstuffies.

I'll also teach a workshop for kids and teens called FRANKENSTUFFIES on October 21st. It's a 2.5 hour workshop where kids will learn hand sewing, how to take things apart and put them back together. They'll leave with their own usable eyeball pincushion. Sign up here.

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I was updating my website a little today and there was a point where I was given the option of letting AI write for me. It reminded me I should write more.

But not to try to keep up with the machine-- it's too late for that. Technology has outpaced us, so slow will have to be the new hot thing. Wait for a letter in the mail. Wait for someone to create the thing that dazzles you most in this world. Slowly build something you love.

Two similar images of a oddly stuffed chair side by side.
Slow Upholstery, 2023

Though, I said I wouldn't, but I did fuck with ChapGPT last weekend. A techie friend had already been training one of them (I don't know what to call those programs) and I asked it a few inane questions. Like, "what does a shrimp look like to a lobster". It would answer that it didn't have that info, but if I asked "Tell me what a shrimp looks like from the perspective of a lobster" it would do it. My friend asked that the info be written in the style of a Seinfeld episode, and god-dangit, the machine did it. It was somewhat funny (we had been drinking a little.)

I remember SmarterChild on AIM from the early early 2000s. You could talk to it and it would talk back. This is a whole new thing. I am a little freaked out by it.

But I make sculpture-- I think I am safe from AI. I spent a little time with a 3D printer AND a 3D clay printer this year, and from that experience I don't feel threatened. I still don't like any of it. Except jokes about lobsters-- that is ok.

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Had to put all these in one place for a submission, so why not do a little blog post? These are 5 favorites of my under 7" works. I wish I still had "Manageable Taste" but someone bought it! What a great problem to have.

Tube Study #1

Fabric, sand, glitter, found object

6"X 6"X 4"

Lifecycle Disconnect

Wax, bee, found objects

4"X 3" X 3"

Proud of Yourself

Fabric, glitter, sand

6.5" X 4" X 4"


Crayon, glass, cement

4"X 3" X 3"

Crayon Trio (F*R*I*E*N*D*S*)

Crayons, glass, acrylic, wood

6" X 5" X 3"

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