The Trip Part One: The “Residency”

I know there is possibly nothing worse than other people’s trip stories, but hey…my blog. (My readership is down to virtually nothing anyway, so why not??!)  Please skip happily over this.

After a long hot summer,  I set off on a trip which began with five days in the studio of my oldest friend Carolyn Schneider (well she’s not the OLDEST, just the friend I’ve had the longest…).  We met in 7th grade art class and both have continued to make art.  In the last decade we’ve spent a week at least once a year making art together (installations like “Art Laundry” and sometimes just own own stuff…to see more check here or here or here).  Sometimes we’ve been in Salem, sometimes in Fort Bragg, California.  This year our time was shorter so I went for five days on the way to a wedding in Arizona.  It looked like this:

to the airport:

The two hour flight to Santa Rose was pretty nice since I had no seat-mate

and then the drive to Fort Bragg has my favorite stop in the middle of it…the Boonville Store…

and on this day the woman who has an upholstery business there let us tour her machines…check this industrial Bernina…

Carolyn and Bill live out of town a few miles on a couple of acres which includes this building…Bill has a recording studio, and repairs guitars, on the ground level and then upstairs…

22 stairs in all…(down is worse than up…scary)

is Carolyn’s nice studio…big and bright…

we’d bring our lunch stuff up with us daily and just stay up there all day…

Carolyn has a show next fall and is just starting in on a series of pastels she calls “Tricksters”…

I just started in trying to respond to her imagery and free associating…bunnies, a stolen Munch figure, the brain (a constant theme for us) the masks which I always paint when I’m there, death, collapse, aging, dying, spring and fall, guess that’s about it.


We talked a lot about the iconography of suburban girls, about where ideas come from, the usual stuff…though it was more fun than usual.  And then R arrived, Carolyn and I tidied up and got ready for the “opening” including our source material near each piece.  The husbands were complimentary, the food was good…

then time to go…alas my friend…

and off we go…Bakersfield here we come!




    1. Well I like yours Robin…actually I love road trip stories…I used to checkl them out in stacks for excellent and imaginative reads. Glad you’re out there my friend.

  1. I’m part of your readership and I love every post. So please keep it up even though Sydney day may be less frequent. I just love his dinosaurs and your work and everything about the blog. Emily


    1. Thanks Emily…a month without Sidney has been pretty sad but his Dad sent us a video clip of the young man in the tub saying hello…which helped a LOT. glad to know you’re still reading!

  2. I love your blog! And I love hearing about other people’s travels, since I don’t seem to go much of anywhere exciting myself! And I too spend treasured time each year with friends I’ve known since I was 2, believe it or not. Thank you for sharing!

  3. I just wish I could be invisible and listen in on all the talk. Maybe I would makes an artist tick .You make it look like so much fun.I love your blog. Keep them coming..xo mem

  4. I too have a (good) friend from seventh grade. They reside in Redlands, Ca and recently purchased a home in Lincoln City. Maybe I’ll get to see her more often. I have been mia somewhat over the summer. Sill posting but not getting around to visit all that much. I get energized this time of year. How nice for you two to get together and do what you love..

  5. I love your blog! And so wonderful to have such a long lived friend who has stayed the course as you have. Bakersfield, one of the many towns I lived in while in California, I believe I was 3 and 4 during my stay there, and there were twin boys across the street, Joan and I’s age. We stayed in contact with that family until we left California for the wilds of Idaho. Life, its such an adventure.

    1. Hi Jane…an adventure indeed. Who would have thought that two geeky suburban girls in a town north of Chicago (Wilmette—even weirder) would both wind up being live long artists on the west coast? Could this be a case of stranger than fiction? xo

  6. Don’t know where your reader all went… but they are the losers in my book!!! What an interesting part one ,love the barn , wow would I love to have a sewing room in the top of one…. I chuckled over the naked ladies drawing, was delighted with the red shoes.😀

  7. the truth of 7th grade friends to begin with, who both turned out to be artists and who work together in unexpected ways and imagery and exhibitions like the “laundry” series, through the years, begs to be documented. and what photographs, bonnie! what you share… industrial sewing machines, barns and stairs as architectural art, carolyn’s tricksters. “the iconography of suburban girls” got me trying to figure out if a mill worker’s daughter from everett, wa who walked to everett high downtown and home each day is considered a “suburban” girl. stuff like this.

  8. Friendship over so many years is a treasure and must be documented and celebrated. So..write away. I will keep reading and NO ONE can stop me. Believe me, you don’t want to tangle with me. If readership is down, then those not reading are just missing out on some darn fun art, silliness, and poignant words.

  9. By the look of all these comments, I’d say your loyal fan base is still there! God, i love your blogs, they fill my heart with joy and my mind with wonder!!! Keep up the “good work Bonnie!”

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