Welcome to MissouriBendStudio!

This is an online journal of my artistic investigations and a way to communicate about my work, ideas, quandries and queries! I welcome comments and conversation and do hope you enjoy these musings. My artwork is available in my shop MissouriBendStudio on Etsy.com or on my website.


Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Blessings and Curses (of the Internet)

Many contented hours were spent stitching on this latest piece in the Notes From the Ancestors series. I'd lost count, but when I went back to the files, I see that this is no. 20! That's a nice round number and I think this will be the final piece in this ongoing series. Something else will emerge, I'm sure. 

I thought I'd devote a portion of this post to sending out an alert to all my artists friends in the blogging world. As we all know, the internet has made possible the amazing connections between people across the world whose paths would never otherwise cross. It is such a positive vehicle for connection and for broadening horizons in so many ways. But, as with everything, there is always at least another side that is unleashed, which is not so positive. The internet also paves the way for all manner of interesting ways to scam people and now I've had a chance to experience it first hand. Scammers prey on all sorts of folks, through a variety of means and making a query to purchase art is just one of them. 

I was the victim of what is known as the Distant Buyer scam....well, almost a victim, in that I caught it in time. I was contacted by someone to purchase two pieces from the Art of Wonder series that they had seen on my website. The correspondence went back and forth for a couple of weeks and rather than purchase the pieces through Etsy, which was what I suggested, this buyer wanted to send a check. Here's the crux of the scam, in case you are unfamiliar with how it works. You come to some agreement with this distant buyer (they are basically smooth operators, but there are tiny red flags along the way, alas) and when the "check" arrives it is for an amount far beyond the agreed upon price. They then direct you to go ahead and deposit the check and just send a check to refund them for the difference. When this happened to me a couple of weeks ago, the buyer (who was supposedly in Miami) sent a check that had a return address of North Carolina, drawn on a bank in Minnesota. In this scam, the check is bogus of course, and if you are caught in the snare, you will deposit it and send back the balance before it comes to light that the check is no good. Apparently, this happens fairly often in the buying and selling of all manner of things on the internet. As I don't engage in anything but selling my artwork, I never thought I'd be entangled in such a scam. So, all is well, as I learned quickly enough what was happening and didn't fall for it, but I just want to remind folks to pay attention to those little internal red flags that go up when something doesn't seem right. We all know the old saying, "buyer beware", but in this case and in these times, "seller beware".

On a ligher note....another little book has come together....The Book of Endless Time. It's a theme I often return to...the magic of the written word, which I describe through lines of dots and a kind of handwritten pseudo text. On top of the text that alternates the dots with the looping writing, a series of little spirals forms scatter across the pages. The pages are made with pencil and white ink on Japanese paper that is then dipped in beeswax. I love the translucency and how wonderful the beeswaxed paper feels in your hands. Time seems to flow in a linear fashion, but there are moments when it does feel circular and indeed endless, which is hard to quite fathom.

Just the other day, I had the desk all cleared and ready to work. It doesn't take long to turn into a little whirlwind of chaos....now that the Notes From the Ancestors is finished, time to head back downstairs, regroup and put things back in order.

Hope your week is going well! It's a beautiful autumn day here in my corner of South Dakota. I know it is not calm many places and my heart goes out to the victims of the hurricane Matthew....hope it will skirt the U.S. and cause no further damage.



  1. Sorry to hear this happened. I only ever accept PayPal or Direct Credit now. Your work is, as always - so very beautiful. Delicate & intriguing.

    1. Hi Louise....yes, that's a wise choice....which is all I will do from now on as well. Thank you for the kind words about my work....the feeling is mutual! Hope you are well in New Zealand....cheers!


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