Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Anything Ewe can do...

This post is looking to be very fibery, but with some marble goodness too.

Ever hear people say sheep are stupid?

Of course this is all in the training.  Any animal can be trained - even goldfish.  Want to learn more, find out here.  Interesting side note, the sheep in this video is a Soay, a rare breed.

Spinning News

I have started spinning up some of the silk that I purchased this summer.  I have to say that I'm not in love with it.  Silk is a very strong fiber and I'm having to use a lot of strength to draft the long fibers into what I want.  There are also crunchy bits from something (cocoon or caterpillar - ?).  I'm trying NOT to think too much about that.  Still it is an experience.  I was thinking about plying it with the small same of Bond sheep roving that I received as a sample.

Speaking of Bond.  I've begun washing up my Allistar fleece.  This fleece just makes me happy.  I love to look at it, touch it, smell it, and think about it.  The color reminds me of lovely creamy hot chocolate.  I have still most of the fleece to wash, but I photographed some of the washed locks to share.

I have some yarn to share - the Turquoise Davy Jones is now taking a bath.  I managed to snap a picture first.  The photo just doesn't capture the color.

Art of School

The other day in art history we learned about Baroque art and I fell in love.  The drama, the power, the marble - holy crap!  I was smitten with these two sculptures.

ArtistGianlorenzo Bernini
TypeMarble Sculpture
Dimensions170 cm (67 in)[1]
LocationGalleria BorgheseRome
Bernini's David is spectacular and the phrase that comes to mind is potential energy.  Can you see his muscles coiled and ready for action.  Look at his remarkable face - wow!  Baroque are is all about engagement of the viewer.  During this time, artist and architects were given a directive from the Catholic Church to create work to bring people back to the fold (counter-reformation).  Gone was the stated, planned works by the Renaissance artists - Baroque art was all about over the top emotion.  Compare this David, with Michelangelo's David.  Quite a difference, eh?

Saint Teresa of Avila in Ecstasy

ArtistGiovanni Lorenzo Bernini
Dimensions150 cm (59 in)
LocationSanta Maria della VittoriaRome
This work is very complex - do yourself a favor and Google it so you can see the work in the church setting.  What really knocked my socks off (other than the mystic subject matter and the look of ecstasy on the lady's face) is the rendering of the clothing.  Compare St. Teresa's heavy wool garment (she was a nun) to the diaphanous covering of the angel.  This is stone folks - marble!  

It shouldn't surprise anyone after reading my school reports, that I've officially declared an art history minor. I'm so in love with what I'm learning.  It is such a great feeling to be knocked flat by works of art.  I want more!

In other news, I hope to soon have pictures from my photography class to share in the coming weeks.  My drawing and design class begin next week.  This means I'll have a bit more schedule juggling to do, but I'm very much looking forward to getting started.

My Favorite Thing

I new heading because I must share this find.  The other day I wasn't feeling well and sat down to watch some TV.  Mister and I have a Boxee Box hooked up to stream Netflix and other online content.  I did a search for sheep and up popped this clip from YouTube.  Do yourself a favor and watch it, I'll wait.

Mist: Sheepdog Tales

Apparently, there is a show in Britain that has been running for sometime.  Why haven't I heard about it?  I went to our library's site and requested the four videos they have and I'm in love.  Sheep, the British landscape and border collies - yes, please!  Some of the scenery just stabs at my heart and makes me long to go.  It is aimed a children, but I find it compelling to watch.  The animals are voiced by actors, but beyond that it is fascinating to see the sheep and the dogs working them.  It is also a good illustration of why border collies do not make good pets.  There isn't a way to keep them busy enough.  Having worked border collies in the past, I'm constantly in awe of their ability, energy and willingness to make humans look useless.  The show has a website and the farm also has a website.

I began the show with Mist: The Tale of a Sheepdog Puppy, which introduces the dogs and the workings of the farm.  It made for some great knitting time and also proved to make me cry (but no spoilers).


  1. Loved both videos.

    There is a professor at SLU that does sheep herding competitions with her border collies (Dr. Druchel). I'm not sure if they have their own sheep or not...

  2. The Davy Jones is a beautiful color! Can't wait to see how the other fleece spins up.