an open source architectural beadwork project from Kate McKinnon and a worldwide team of innovators
I’m writing from a beautiful sunny, cool spring day in Boston. My work perch looks out over a street busy with life; there are bikes, dogs, people walking to the Boston Common, to lunch, to work, people on vacation, people who just finished a semester of college. I can hear the traffic, and the children playing next door at a preschool. Cars drive by all of the time, but slowly, because our street is the garden-way through Boston, and there are stop signs. There are tennis courts down the street in the park, and we try to play every day. It clears my head and keeps me focused.
The flowers have been astonishing. Forsythia and pink magnolias first, marching down the street in thick riots of YES, and now dogwoods, redbuds, fruit trees and tulips are making such a festival of blossoms that the sidewalks are covered in petals of all colours. Boston is probably pink and white from the air today.
Lots of people are beading with us right now, all over the world.
In one direction, in Germany, the Perlen Poesie team just sent a magazine to press that has four or five gorgeous pages about Pierced Arrows and MRAW and our new books coming out. I’m so happy about it, and in CGB tradition it features a team. It steps out an Arrow by Ingrid Wangsvik, and shows several more by Eileen Montgomery and Kim Van Antwerp. Karen Beningfield did glittering illustrations, and Claudia Furthner and Joke van Biesen checked the German, and the word charts for each Arrow segment. I wrote a bit about casting, cloning, and defeating the peyote start, and the magazine staff wrote up a description of why and how MRAW that was so perfect I’m going to change my own writeup to match it.
In another world, the PodCast bead is being explored by bead groups everywhere, and they are casting glorious Things off of Things at such a rate that I feel that anywhere in the world right now, someone may be Snipping, Sketching or PodCasting for the first time.
On the Internets, the huge and active Seed Beads and More Facebook group is doing Machines with me, making Kaleidocycles and BatCycles, and we’ve already had some fun discoveries. One of them is that every hexagon has the ability to fold in the middle and express as a pair of linked tetrahedra. This is kind of astonishing. I mean I knew it, but I didn’t get it. I’ll be doing more pieces and more work to show this.
Really any roundish form or collection of forms should cycle, and that’s pretty neat. Claudia’s collection of butterflies on the upper right is really a rather orderly arrangement, and it turns happily.
These are the kinds of ideas we get from beading with all of you, and we are all quite thankful.
If you’d like to watch the Flower Face videos I made for the group, there are two of them, and they are right here. They are working videos, not very slick. I dream of shooting an entire series of videos (professionally filmed) while our team is in town in July. So many talented hands! In the meantime, we must make do with me. The Flower Face videos have lots of close-up sewing, which is helpful. If you’d like to get links to new videos when they post, consider subscribing to our YouTube channel.
Thanks much to all of our new beaders! I am back to the worktable today, finalizing the Cycle and PodCast chapters, and we are getting busy drawing up some of the beautiful faces and casts that all y’all have done.