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Roz and Her Library of Books

I have been greedy for books my whole life! As early as two years of age I remember coveting books. Adults had books. Adults could peer into a book and pull something out of it. I didn’t yet know what reading was called, but I saw the results—people communicating by deriving messages from the pages […]

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Wil Freeborn’s New Watercolor Painting Book

I just purchased a copy of artist Wil Freeborn’s new book Learning to Paint in Watercolor with 50 Paintings: Pick Up the Skils, Put on the Paint, Hang Up Your Art. (Quarry, ISBN 978-1-63159-277-5) (The link is to Amazon for convenience, but I’m not affiliated, but it where you can.) I read half of the […]

Summer Reading Suggestions from the MCBA Visual Journal Collective

See the full post for details and links to the 2-part video presentation.

What I’ve Been Reading: Some Quick Book Reviews

The full post lists some short book reviews on a variety of subject matters.

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Minnesota State Fair Prep—#8: Information and Inspiration

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Left: Minnesota State Fair: An Illustrated History, by Kathryn Strand Koutsky and Linda Koutsky, image ©Coffee House Press. Read below for more details.

I can hear the groans of faithful readers as they click on the blog today, “Another Minnesota State Fair post? What has happened to Roz?” Well, this is after all a blog about my enthusiasms—but I have saved the best in the “preparation series” for last (notice I didn’t say “last Fair post”!): information and inspiration.

It’s time you looked at what other people are writing and thinking about the Fair. And there is no better place to look than Minnesota State Fair: An Illustrated History, by Kathy and Linda Koutsky. (Disclosure: the authors are my friends, but even if I didn’t know them I would have to own this book and give it repeatedly as a gift to people who haven’t yet caught the Fair bug, or who have but don’t know about this book.)

Artists Mining Their Sketchbooks for Inspiration

JanBeaneyLeft: Book 16 in the stitch and embroidery series of Jan Beaney and Jean Littlejohn. (image ©Jan Beaney and Jean Littlejohn) Click on the image to see an enlargement.  

I love looking at the sketchbooks and journals of other artists. I enjoy seeing how their art materials choices make differences in their art. I always learn something from their use of the page, page spread, or negative space. I am curious to see how some artists go totally visual and others lay on the words. Pattern, color, texture (of collage) all draws me in. I have a sense that I am watching the artist work his way to a conclusion in a very personal dialog. I am intrigued by process.

Attraction to this material causes me to seek out sketchbook facsimilies and other published records. I was thrilled to find the fabric artists Jan Beaney and Jean Littlejohn.

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