Posts tagged ‘summer’

August 21, 2011

Silent Sunday::Fairwell to the Fair

by heatherkp



Capturing one moment that tells you a little something about my week.

August 5, 2011

Friday Fieldtrip::Penland the Full tour

by heatherkp

It’s Friday and I’m away again on another Field trip, this time up to PA with a couple college girlfriends for a wedding.  While I’m out scratching up more field trip fun I’m going to share with you the first of a few posts over the next couple weeks about Penland School of Crafts.  To start with I’ll show you around the campus so you get an idea of the setting, the views, the buildings, accommodations (for some) etc…I’ll get more into the creative specifics of the class I took with Jason Pollen next week but for now I hope you enjoy the scenery:)

Welcome to Craft House.  This is the first building I was greeted by when I drove up and I quickly found out it would be my home for my 2 weeks at Penland.  I stayed in the 3rd floor dorm, where there were many other work study and “over 30-under 40” students.  They seem to do some divisions by age, probably not a bad idea.

Inside the 3rd floor dorm rooms (above) and a “typical” individual non-private accommodation (below).  Not bad especially with the windows and fans (they provided us with). Below are some of the typical views looking out across Penland road and along the walkways that run across the campus.  Craft House has a fantastic big porch with swings perfect for enjoying sunsets, reading, having a glass of wine and relaxing (although I felt short on relaxation time with all that was crammed into the schedule!).

My next stop upon arrival at Penland was over to the Pines dining hall.  I spent many hours in this building both eating and fulfilling my work study hours.  I worked about 3-4 hours a day in addition to classes from 9:30-4:30.  It was a lot of work but it was fun. Apparently almost 45% of the students attending Penland do so on some sort of Scholarship!  If it wasn’t for these scholarships so many people wouldn’t be able to go, me included!  I definitely plan to go back, if they’ll have me.

Above is an installation sculpture on the porch in front of the coffee house by one of my favorite artists Patrick Dougherty.

The meals were really diverse and always included a vegetarian option and a great salad bar.  They make a fantastic Wasabi salad dressing, man do I miss it and miss not having to cook (but really I love to cook).  Each day the big chalk board in the dining hall told the daily events.

Some of the veggies and herbs are grown at Penland but they feed on average 250 people at lunch and dinner during their 5 summer sessions (each 2 weeks long).

Some of the buildings at Penland are on the National Historic Register (such as the Dye house below) and others are fairly new.  They are also in the process of building a brand new dorm building. 

Print Studio

Clay Studio (outside kilns)

Metals Shop

Glass Studio

Northlight, houses Photography, Book making and a large hall for social gatherings and Yoga:)

Lily Loom, houses textiles-weaving and surface design as well as the Main administrative offices.  Below are a few of my other favorite spots and views I found upon wandering the grounds. 

Porch at the old Dye House

Hydrangeas in bloom by the entrance to the Supply store (back of Craft House)

“Cheryl’s Gate”, named so after a class mate who helped me appreciate the intricate beauty of this old gate (not that it needed much help!)

Old stairs (not in use) covered in Moss on the side of Craft House and the supply store

View at dusk looking out the front door of Lily Loom

Walled garden leading behind metals and clay to Lily Loom, it’s covered in clay tiles and found objects and I could always find something new as I walked past it.

The Red neon box up between the Print studio and Northlight.

View out the side of the Pines on our last morning.

That concludes the walking tour of Penland!  I hope you got a feel for what the campus, grounds and facilities are like.  It’s quite a wonderful experience and I even heard rumors of them installing some Air conditioning sometime in the near future (in the spots that really need it).  Have you visited Penland or another similar school?  What was your experience like?


August 2, 2011

Magic Mushroom Tour of Penland

by heatherkp

There were so many mushrooms on and around the grounds of Penland.  There was a stretch of wet weather with afternoon showers almost every day (luckily I came at the tail end of this) which promoted the growth of more kinds of mushrooms than I’ve ever seen in one place.  I can’t begin to identify them but I kept my eye’s peeled on my frequent walks.  The first two images below were the most plentiful and these beauties got to be about 8″ tall and across at times.  They emerged with small domed tops and gradually got larger and larger, lasting a week or so before breaking down.

These golden finger shaped fungus were one of my favorites.  In fact, any of the gold and orange one’s were certain to catch my eye.  Like flowers of the forest floor.

This was another favorite, with it’s upturned edges and smooth velvety surface.  I was taking all these photo’s with out a flash and wish I’d brought along a tripod but didn’t want to be hiking with one most of the time.  Since it’s slightly soft in focus I decided to add a little Kim Klassen Texture magic to it for Texture Tuesday.  This White Mushroom/Fungus looks like coral don’t you think?

Glittering raindrops on a mushroom found inside an old tree log after the rain.  I almost missed this one, there were several like it very well camouflaged but almost 6″ across.  Once I spotted it I saw quite a few of these around.

This one was a bit smelly but there was quite an interesting surface texture on the underside of this partially decomposed mushroom.  These trumpet type (below) were another favorite because they were quite hard to spot and such a beautiful form.  Once I’d be there for a week or so I was able to spot more varieties as my eyes became “trained” to notice the more subtle mushrooms. 

I loved mushroom scouting while at Penland (and I wasn’t the only one!) and was fascinated by the varieties, colors, textures and forms of these beauties which I’m sure were an inspiration to many of the artists there.  When I needed to get away from the studio or needed some quite time to myself I’d often go walk with my camera ready to spot new magic mushrooms (and collect Mica, but I’ll save that for another post). Do you know the names of any of these?

September 23, 2010

Welcome Autumn~Goodbye Summer

by heatherkp


Happy~ I love fall and with the extremely high temps this summer I have already been enjoying the cool evenings and lower humidity.  As I post this though summer is not letting go with temps in the 90’s and high humidity.

There are so many great events in the fall.  I have a lot of personal reasons to love fall such as our wedding anniversary in October and my birthday and Thanksgiving (my favorite holiday) in November.

I LOVE the changing leaves and colors of fall, the fall veggie harvests (winter squash, greens, apples, pumpkins etc), Halloween costumes and decorations and warm days and cool nights perfect for campfires.

The practice of nesting inevitably rolls around for me as well at this time of  the year.  It makes me want to cook soup and bake and fill the house with the smells of apples and cinnamon.  I also love to get cozy with a good book or a new knitting project, which for some reason I never am motivated to do in the summer (knit that is).

Sad~Oh how I will miss the long warm relaxing days of summer with the sounds of crickets and birds chirping and the flicker of firefly’s.  I will miss the beach and the pool and fireworks and days that last forever.

I’ll miss the bounty of summer veggies and especially fruits such as peaches, nectarines, melons, plums and berries.  I’ve done a good bit of food preservation this summer to extend the season into the fall and winter.  I just love to pull out some roasted peppers, canned peaches or frozen cherry tomatoes in the dead of winter and taste the sunshine of summer again.

I’ll miss gardens and flowers and being able to sit outside on the deck as I journal each morning or dine al fresco with friends.  Summer is a time of celebrating friendships, relaxation and fun.  It’s a time to recharge your batteries and store up reserves for the long cold months ahead.  As a last hurrah to summer and a great way to welcome in the Autumn we are going  camping this weekend at the beach.  I’m wishing for a weekend that brings the best of both seasons together.