Sunday, February 8, 2009

What's on Amie's Reader

When I first started blogging, and learning about other people's blogs, I had no great way to keep track of what I wanted to read. I started my Squidoo lens on printmaking artists, with the intention of showcasing printmaking bloggers. Well, that sort of went off course a bit, and now there are all sorts of cool printmakers on there. I have kind of run low on steam for keeping that one up to date, because I keep discovering more and more amazing printmaking artists with websites. I will still keep working on it, but I have other projects that seem to be taking precedence lately.

As I was working on the lens, I was trying to add Etsy shops to those artists who are printmakers with Etsy stores. Then Prinsy was forged first as a Flickr group, then as a full-fledged Etsy Team. Our blog got started, and I seemed to be luckily in on the ground floor with that one. I've been blogging two (mostly) regular posts: Printsy member interviews, should be self-explanitory, and "Who's Printsy This Week", a selection of ten items listed by our Printsy members who have used the tag "Printsy" on the item listed. So I've been busy trying to bring people to the Printsy fold, and then trying to get them to give us a little information about themselves on the blog interviews, which have so far showcased some absolutely incredible art by a range of skilled, creative, and talented printmakers. Keep an eye on the Printsy blog for more great stuff.

So back to trying to keep track of those printmaking artists who blog. I like reading people's thoughts on their process and development of their images, on their marketing efforts, on their inspirations, and often on their daily lives. Cue stage right: Google Reader. If you are keen on keeping track of news feeds and blogs, Google Reader lets you do so all in one spot. For those of us with Blogger accounts, it's a no-brainer. For anyone who doesn't yet have a Google account, it's a pretty easy step to set one up. Yes, Google is taking over the world, and I am doing my fair share to see that it happens. Sigh. Well, if they stop having so many great applications to use (I'm also a Google Docs addict), maybe I wouldn't be so enabling .

Another Printsy member recently posted to her blog about her Google Reads, and I thought what a great idea! So I'll try to do a fairly regular feature about what's on my reader, to share some of the wonderful stuff that I already get to read about, but that you might be interested in, too. It's almost entirely art and natural-history dominated, which probably won't surprise anyone here, but I am open to other topics.

So, here's the first installment of What's on Amie's Reader. This is not an exhaustive list by any stretch of the imagination. I might do some kind of theme, or just pick a few that pop out as particularly interesting.


My longest-read printmaking blog would have to be Annie Bissett's Woodblock Dreams. Follow Annie's development of her intricately detailed woodcuts and symbologically deep imagery in her moku hanga work. Her recently completed "Honey, I'm Worried About the Kids" links past with present, tradition with innovation, and the connecting thread of doing what's right for our children with the Pilgrim's migration to the New World.

I think my two favourite printmaking bloggers would have to be Sherrie York on Brush and Baren and Jen Z on Jen and the Greyhounds. Both artists share enthusiasm for their subject matter and frustrations with interruptions to creativity, which really strike a spark of recognition in this reader's heart, and their sense of humour at the world sure helps keep the posts entertaining.

Sherrie's luciously executed linocuts are exquisite to behold, and I'm delighted, always, to follow their progress. She's just started up a new work in progress based on her recent "underfoot" theme.

Jen's blog focuses a lot on her greyhound mates, and her lovely photography of these animals bounding about really captures their spirit. Jen's been taking advantage of her beautiful surroundings lately, taking the dogs off cross-country skiing through upstate New York.

Natural History

One of my favourite aspects of natural history is the "gee whiz" factor: there is just so much out there that escapes our attention almost 100% of the time, that I really appreciate having my attention focused on things that are, truly, remarkable. From behaviour to biochemistry, life and death of the organisms that surround us is source of incredible wonder, and these bloggers share that with us.

Probably the nature-related blog I've longest held on my Reader is A Snail's Eye View, thanks to Sherrie's Brush and Baren link list. Right now, Snail is in the middle of the record-breaking searing Australian weather that is making the bushfires raging across south eastern Australia's state of Victoria so incredibly deadly. I've enjoyed Snail's intimate portrayal of the critters that find their way to Snail's back yard, and the knowledge imparted about these organisms is interesting in a very approachable manner.

Snail then introduced me to The Other 95%. While some of his posts are quite technical, there's just some great stuff that blogger Kevin Zelnio shares with his readers. Check out his recent post on cepahlopod camoflauge behaviour. Kevin also recently hosted the latest Circus of the Spineless, a showcase of bloggers who have posts about invertebrates.

Finally, Watching the World Wake Up is an entertaining combination of mountain biking, hiking and botany through the deserts of the western US. Learn what the three types of photosynthesis are, how photosynthesis is like mountain bikes, and why Mormons are like singlespeeders.

Enjoy the reads, and feel free to share anything of interest that you bump across. You never know, maybe it'll end up on my Reader!

No comments: