Thursday, October 29, 2009

Weekend Workshop

I'm leaving soon for a weekend workshop with Anne Bagby.  She is an amazing artist and I'm feeling pretty fortunate to get into another one of her workshops.  The above photos are from last year's workshop.  The carved stamps are Anne's and the bottom photo (which honestly doesn't look like much!) is one of the projects that I worked on using Anne's designs.  This year we will be doing our own carving!  Check back next week and I'll share what I did in class.  Life is good and I'm  off to carve in the mountains!  Later...

Sunday, October 25, 2009

More Painted Papers

I'm well into painted paper again today and want to share a couple of sheets that turned out pretty good.  I've decided my palette is 'autumn' and I'm trying to focus on those colors without making the pages look too much alike.  I should mention three influences: Anne Bagby, Traci Bautista, and a book by Sherrill Kahn, "Creating with Paint".  I suppose everything we see has an influence on what we produce.  There's a few more sheets to go before construction begins.  Later...

Brave People Make Things

While checking out some favorite blogs, I happened upon the following at Sharon's blog.  So I decided to put the same offer out there with one little exception.  Because 2010 is so near, I am changing the timeline.

The first five (5) people to respond to this post will get something made by me.

This offer does have some restrictions and limitations so please read carefully:

1. I make no guarantees that you will like what I make. Whatcha get is whatcha get.

2. What I create will be just for you, with love.

3. It’ll be done this year (2009).    EDITED:  It will be done by April 01, 2010.

4. I will not give you any clue what it’s going to be. It will be something made in the real world and not something cyber. It may be weird or beautiful. Or it may be monstrous and annoying. Heck, I might bake something for you and mail it to you. Who knows? Not you, that’s for sure!

5. I reserve the right to do something strange.

6. In return, all you need to do is post this text on your blog and make 5 things for the first 5 to respond to your blog post.

7. Send your mailing address - after I contact you.
While you're at it, check out Sharon's blog.  Her collage work and photography are outstanding!

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Painted Paper

After playing with painted paper for my Traci Bautista inspired book, I've been making more paper.  Somewhere along the way, I began using fewer paper towels and more direct to paper techniques.Here's a couple of pieces I've come up with.

I've got the book cover finished but have many more pages to go.  Hope to share it soon.  Later...

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

The Last of the Trip - Acadia National Park

We stayed at the Bay Meadow Cottages about five minutes away from the entrance to Acadia National Park.  The cottages were so cute and pretty economical since the season was winding down. 

I had to have a shot of the post office that was just across the road from the cottages.

These are a few shots taken on the 27 mile loop that runs through the park.

We were damp to the bone here.  I think we both agreed that we'll go before October next time.  The leaves weren't quite as remarkable as I'd hoped but it was beautiful anyway.  So.....that's it for the Birthday Adventure.  Now I'm looking forward to two big art weekends that are just around the corner!  Later...

More Trip Photos - Kennebunkport

These are a few photos taken while visiting Kennebunkport. It was a rainy day but beautiful at the same time.

Loved this sign!

This was in downtown Kennebunkport surrounded by some wonderful little shops.  We could have spent hours here.

We were told that this is George Bush's house.  There was a guard shack and a guard so it very well could be.

Kennebunkport was naturally beautiful plus there were so many shops to visit.  Hope to go back some day.  Later...

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Round the Block Swap - Final Round

This is the final round of Yahoo group, "Inthishouseandgarden's", Round The Block Swap.  I'm sad for it to come to an end but another block swap will start up after the holidays!  This is the work I did on Elizabeth Golden's wonderful blocks.  My blocks will arrive home soon and I'll be posting those then.  Later...

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Traci Bautista Inspired

In a few weeks, several of my art friends and I will gather for our annual retreat (it's been ten years now!)  The idea of devoting the entire weekend to working with techniques from Traci Bautista's Collage Unleashed was suggested by Allison.  Allison's idea was brilliant!  This past weekend a small group came together to play with the concepts and prepare for the retreat.  After that wonderful day and the book that I have finally completed, I have to say "Hats Off To Traci!"  The book that is pictured is actually my second cover.  The first set didn't match the way I wanted them to but they were very cool.  More muslin was visible on the first set which I ended up framing.  This cover is the tie-dyed paper towel technique and was machine quilted onto muslin.  Stencils were used along with my favorite little girl image that pops up in my art from time to time.  A transparency is sewn over the image.

This is a shot from the top which shows a bit of the papers we produced.  I absolutely loved making the paper and could have done that one thing all day.  The inside of the covers are visible in this shot.  They are made from white on white which is also described in Traci's book.

The latch hook binding was my first latch hook anything.  I learned that I need to use the 'neat' strips first, muslin strips next and finish up with fiber.  I didn't think about it this time but just jumped right in.  I found myself untangling fibers often and grinding my teeth more.  The lesson was learned well and it will be easier next time.  Attaching the covers to the binding and pages was the greatest challenge.  I know there must be a trick to this and maybe experience is the trick.  I struggled with this but again, I learned from it too.  I absolutely love the binding and the challenge was well worth the result.

The covers were finished off with a blanket stitch.  Another option is to let it fray a bit but I decided to go with the stitch this time.  I am amazed at the texture of the paper towel.  I used a liquid sealer on the covers and the texture is much like leather.  It remains flexible and easy to sew through as well. 
My next book will have more muslin on the covers which are already dyed and ready to go.  If you haven't taken a look at Collage Unleashed, check it out.  It's a great book!

The Birthday Trip - Part 1

I'm finally getting around to sharing a few photos from my trip.  Susan, my best friend since high school, and I flew out of Nashville and ended up in Albany, NY by the end of the first day.  By evening, we were happy to settle in Pawtucket for the night.
We had a situation with our rental car and were committed to being in downtown Providence, RI the next afternoon so we decided to head toward the water and just enjoy the views until then. 

A view from the window....

I have to admit I didn't know much about cranberry bogs.  My knowledge of cranberries had only involved a can of cranberry sauce at Thanksgiving so this was also educational!  We met a very interesting and friendly gentleman at this stop who explained the process for harvesting cranberries. 

This is another view of the cranberry bog. 

I have no idea what this is...anyone?  These are pods that were growing near the cranberry bog and I had to get a picture. 

This was a great stop.  I think this was called Buzzard Bay but my memory is not the greatest.  Whatever it was called, it was beautiful and relaxing.  I can only imagine how it must be to enjoy it in the summer.

Another shot at the bay.

And what stop isn't complete without this photo! 

At the end of our second day, we've seen a few sights, manuvered through construction to get to downtown Providence R.I. (which made my GPS "Bertha" go insane), worked out the kinks in our rental car deal and we're well on our way toward Kennebunkport, Maine.  This photo is a view from the car of a suspension bridge we went over...couldn't resist the shot.
This first day flew by and there was so much more that we had wanted to do but isn't that the way it always goes.  Later...

Friday, October 9, 2009

Another Round of "Round the Block" Art

The next set of blocks in the 'round the block' swap on Yahoo group Inthishouseandgarden are ready to mail.  The originator of these wonderful blocks was Susie Lafond.  I love her use of thread!   One of the things I like about swaps is seeing other artist's work up close.  The photo really doesn't do them justice.

I did a side on each of Susie's blocks.  Inspired by Susie's threads, I used thread on the taller block.  Another block swap is the works and I can't wait!  Check the group out on Yahoo.