Why I read, why I write: Kurt Vonnegut edition.

ann teresa barboza embroidery artist

Write to please just one person. If you open a window and make love to the world, so to speak, your story will get pneumonia.

Kurt Vonnegut is such a boss. Here are his eight tips of writing short stories, a list that includes “be a sadist” and “every character should want something.” But the above quote is my favorite. Write to please one person. When I’m teaching writing to kids, I call this their “dream reader” or “fantasy reader.” Who is a person who you admire, who you most want to read your work? When I write, I think about a professor I studied with at Bard. I write for him, because writing for everyone is exhausting and impossible. A fools errand, just like trying to be liked by every person at the party.

Image by Ana Teresa Barboza, who creates amazing embroideries of plants and bodies and other natural things. Check out her website here.

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Tapestry taxidermy

Screen Shot 2015-01-20 at 1.02.41 PMToday was incredibly long and not particularly enjoyable. So, I don’t have anything to say really about these tapestry “taxidermy” creatures except wow. So pretty, so clever. Screen Shot 2015-01-20 at 1.03.32 PMThe lady who makes them is tres jolietoo. (Of course she is; she’s French and perfectly disheveled. Women like Frederique are the entire reason I’ve had bangs for the past twelve years.) Screen Shot 2015-01-21 at 10.49.01 PM

There are lots more beautiful pictures on her website—check it out.

I’ve got a crush on Nicoletta Daríta de la Brown.

nicoletta darita
Beautiful lady out of Baltimore makes beautiful art—particularly her embroidered trashbag series “El Barrio Bodega.” The colorful ones are my favorite, but there’s also a fantastically tacky-ugly-pretty gold one, too. “Growing up in Brooklyn and Harlem I’d visit my block’s bodega daily, with pennies in hand, and leave with priceless treasures,” she explains on her website. “More than just bags, they reflect a sense of pride for my neighborhood and are a symbol of my cultural identity.”

More here.

Not your grandma’s needlepoint.

Screen shot 2013-02-26 at 8.24.19 PMStephen Campbell makes sassy embroideries (prints for sale here), which I freaking love. It’s awesome whenever anyone subverts “women’s work” or “folk art” and shows how transgressive, beautiful, and straight-up artistic it can be. Embroidery requires WORK, you know? Not to mention skill and an eye for color and design and… yeah. Art isn’t just made with oil paints, and that’s freaking rad.

Also, I had a no good, very bad day today, so Campbell’s print is making me thirsty. But you know what we have on top of the fridge? Maker’s. Inspiration strikes!

{Found via Style Carrot}