Monday, June 29, 2009

Pink Journal

This is an oldie but goodie: the cover from one of the first journals I made during the beginning of my self-imposed art therapy healing path. I decided to keep anything that inspired me in the book. I put in poetry, my own writing, design ideas, photos torn from magazines, sketches and insights.

The cover was done by priming a commercial journal (about 9x12) with white latex, then painting over it. I used oil pastels (a.k.a.craypas) along with oils, and scratched texture into it when it was drying. I love mushing the color around, blending some parts but not others, drawing with the craypas onto the wet surface, scraping off/rubbing off parts and repainting. The hard part is knowing when to stop so you don't overwork a piece.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Meet Elsa!

This charming, one-of-a-kind sock monkey was a Christmas gift from my daughter, Amanda. She secretly went on-line and found a sock monkey pattern, then found a monkeyish sock at the local K-Mart, and did her designing when I wasn't home. Amanda is a writer, and doesn't think of herself as an artist (although she is quite good) and really doesn't enjoy sewing so creating Elsa was a true labor of love.

Elsa arrived naked, so I recently made her little wardrobe with some soy-batik fabric and a little red felt; the buttons are actually covered brads. Thanks Amanda!!

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Collaging Like a Maniac and Loving Every Minute

I recently joined a new postcard exchange group at the urging of a fiber-addict friend. At first I thought maybe I was overloading myself with projects and regreted commiting to it, but after I went into creative overdrive this weekend I knew it was just the thing I needed to get out of my rut.

I made two styles: one collaged tissue paper with a hand carved stamp overprint and the other a collage of painted, distressed, recycled tyvek (from used fedex envelopes) combined with metal mesh, foil gum wrappers and gold painted coffee cup sleeves.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Ugly Orange Portrait

I joined a new art group, called Thread Society. Apparently a lot of members are really fascinated by different colors, textures and qualities of thread. I pretty much joined because a friend told me they were doing self-portraits, which is one of my favorite things to do...and also because the rules only required you to use 4" of thread to qualify. I'm not really into the quilty aspect of fiber art, but I CAN manage to sew 4" with thread.

I actually don't like this piece, but am posting it anyway. It started out with a recent photo of me (if you want to see the photo, it is in the back of Cate Prato's book "Mixed Media Self Portraits." [In photos I don't look nearly as crazy as my self portraits do, so I guess I am just crazy on the inside.])

I played with the photo in photoshop, tested out a bunch of filters, then brought pieces of different treatments into one document in a kind of Mondrian-inspired layout, which I printed on t-shirt gummy transfer stuff (after flipping all the images.) It was nice. But I don't want to make nice art. So I made it un-nice. It needed color, so I randomly punched it up with my favorite watersoluble oil pastels...that's an oxymoron...they are more like creamy gel crayons that melt when you add water. I look really scrunchy-faced and angry in the piece, which maybe I sometimes am. Anyway, art isn't all about being beautiful or presenting yourself as beautiful, and it doesn't always come out good, or the way you had envisioned it. Or maybe am I red and scrunchy-faced because I am mad about growing older?