Saturday, July 26, 2008

Cape Cod Vacation

"If you're fond of sand dunes and salty air, quaint little villages here and there...." I took a break from mosaics this summer to spend a week on Cape Cod. I have family there so I didn't have to pay for accommodations. It's a good thing because the Cape is pricey! I love it there though - that humid, heavy, salty air and soft, beautiful light are like nowhere else. I stayed in Monument Beach, a very small town near the beginning of the Cape. The house is within walking distance of the cute and beautiful town beach - open to anyone who knows about it. Luckily, it isn't well known so we didn't have to share with too many other beachgoers! After a few days there we moved on to spend time in Chatham with friends. We immediately headed for another beach - South Beach. This is a much larger and more populated one on Nantucket Sound - which was made colder than usual this year by Hurricane Bertha. We stayed to watch the sun set and the full moon rise and to totally enjoy that famous Cape light. The next day we hit Sandy Neck beach over in Barnstable. This is a beautiful, wide open, pebbly beach with smooth, clear water on Cape Cod Bay. For me, no visit to Cape Cod is complete without visiting Provincetown - or PTown as my new jacket says! It is a hustling, bustling little city with old buildings housing everything from world-class restaurants, galleries and souvenir shops. And the people-watching is the best I've ever found anywhere! If you stay long-term or are a local, you leave your car behind and rent a bike to navigate the narrow streets or to get to the two huge beaches - Herring Cove and Race Point. The old-time fishing industry is evident as you look out over the piers and wharfs toward the open ocean.If you ever visit Cape Cod, you will notice the amazing color of the hydrangeas there - a gorgeous, shocking bright blue caused by the specific ph balance in the soil.
Cape Cod is a special, if crowded, place. But if you come, try to stay far from the larger cities like Hyannis so you can discover the old-time Cape where the real natives live.

Gyotaku - Fish Rubbing

If you are like me, when you are on vacation you like to do a little souvenir shopping - or at least some strolling and window shopping. Once you've spent a little time on the Cape, however, you start to see the same old tourist souvenirs everywhere - same stuff, different town! But I came upon a pretty cool place in Chatham. On the surface it is just a clothing store. But when you check out the art on the clothing you know you are seeing something unique. The name of the store is Blue Water Fish Rubbings and the artist, Jenny Bovey, uses actual fish, octopus, seahorses, lobsters, sharks, etc to make prints on the garments. She uses real fish (she has fishermen friends who bring them to her) which she allows to dry. Then she coats them with screen printers ink and stamps the cloth with them! She has had some of her fish for 25 years. This is an old Japanese technique called Gyotaku which literally means Fish Rubbing. Check out more info here.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008


glass and mirror mosaic
27" x 20"