SF Design Ideas is now sfdesignideas.com

That is just one of them many changes that have been happening to me lately and though it’s not a very good excuse, it’s the best I can say to you about my recent absence from this blog.

Another is, I’ve been getting some work as an interior decorator. I love it; it’s been really great for me and my self esteem. My two new clients are the best. They trust me and seem really happy about what we’ve accomplished together so far. They’ve also pushed me out of my comfort zone and into new aspects of my work such as selecting artwork, furnishings, furniture, and paint colors. And I have to say, choosing the right paint color is challenging. Color theory is a science that some people just naturally understand while others rely on the opinions of “experts” to make color decisions for them.

My client is very keen to know the colors I recommend she paint her living room and dining room. As her decorator, I feel I should have a strong opinion about it and maybe even decided it long ago but I didn’t and I don’t; I’m not really sure what they should be. The walls have some interesting features, the ceiling is uneven and the space is a single, rectangular space divided into a living room, dining room and kitchen whose boundaries are delineated by my clients’ large pieces of beautiful furniture.

My other client is a cool young, engineer working on a startup in Marin. His one bedroom apt. sits like a crow’s nest high above the City. He hired me because he wanted his place to feel more intimate yet still maintain its open floor design and feel. I moved a sofa and that was the key that opened up numerous doors of possibilities. I have to say however, that the sofa move went outside his comfort zone and until he decided it was okay, the room wasn’t right. It was as if I had turned the place sideways but very quickly, he decided he liked it and we proceeded to purchase a large, contemporary wool rug, some original artwork, a piece of multi-functioning kitchen furniture, a light fixture and drapes. Now he’s thinking there maybe a new opportunity to start a business so I’m looking into that angle.

And then there’s my writing. My first and only true love. How patient it waits for me, holding still the last breath of a line waiting to be crossed. My very good friend and fellow writer has a local theater company with her husband. The name of the company is PUS, Performers Under Stress. My involvement with the company has been mostly as fundraising assistant and dependable friend. The company is doing staged readings and my friend invited me to finally ground the play that’s been floating around in my brain for the past decade or two. Of course I said, yes and got to work on it. I’ll share more about it as time goes on. The tentative performance date is in June or July sometime.

I guess this all sounds like a bunch of excuses and maybe it is. I don’t know. I’m still taking loads of pictures and I don’t know where to store them since I’m not ready to make a $10/mo commitment to Dropbox. And its not because I’m cheap, I just don’t always have an extra $10 to spare. Now that really sounds pathetic but that’s been a big deal breaker for me. I have to be able to download my pics somewhere so that’s it, I’m going to sign up for Drop Box and you’ll be seeing me more often, I’m sure.

On Tuesday I’m headed back to LA and I hope I’ll have time to take some pics of the ranch houses that dominate the San Fernando Valley landscape. I’m also taking a day trip to Palm Springs so expect some new pics of palm trees. In the mean time, I’ve got some houses to share with you.

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When I was trying to create my painting portfolio for graduate school, the one piece of advice I kept thinking about was that I had to have a portfolio that showed an interest in some aspect of or particular exploration of a specific interest area. I never could seem to limit myself however. Every time I did a new painting, I was exploring new territory. I was seeking my artistic voice. Little did I ever expect to find it years later in photography and more specifically, in shadows and reflections. This picture of a shadow of a tree haunts me. I love it and I’m considering using it for my business card, if I ever get one made. There is something about the life of negative space that shows up in and on everything without notice or distraction. We simply accept the vision of a dark tree growing up the side of a building as normal.

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It’s almost like a ghost that exists two-dimensionaly in our world that we see and don’t see. I particularly like tree shadows and the way the tree shadows move in the wind. Silhouettes of everyday life projected onto the walls of our constructions; dancing like shadow puppets in the wind.

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This is a photo-graph of  a shadow taking up all the room on a waiting room couch. I had to quickly duck inside the office to take the picture of what looked like a beautiful shadow occupying this couch as I passed outside the window. Its funny how I see so many more details of the scene that I hadn’t noticed when I first walked past the window. I also like the colors of the green plant, the pink couch and the diagonal lines of the shadow.

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Doesn’t this look like a trompe l’oeil? Well, to me it does and for those who might be unfamiliar with this French term, Wikipedia defines it as “an art technique involving realistic imagery in order to create the optical illusion that the depicted objects exist in three dimensions.” I also love the simplicity of the light shadowed on the plain wall and the wires, of course, none of which are painted on the otherwise flat, nondescript building which would look even flatter and more nondescript without the shadows.

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These are just a few more examples of my new obsession with shadows and even better, shadows of telephone poles on houses!!! Now that’s what I call killing two birds with one stone.

 

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And just in case you were wonder-ing where these sights were captured, I took them in Crocker Amazon, which is the far, southern side of Mission St. and the Mission. Here are a few more for your enjoyment and inspiration.

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And last but not least, it just wouldn’t be right if I didn’t share some of my most recent and newly favorite telephone poles.

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It’s good to be back with you. I’m glad we figured out how to solve my storage problem. Thank you for being so patient and interested in my world.

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I remain you loyal is sometimes absent, design detective,

Karen

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