Thursday, March 10, 2011

Start Once More - at the beginning

I find myself here again. Once again alone, attempting to create.

But I find that if I keep on moving, what I'm working on very quickly becomes my companion.

I've decided to stay home with my 3-year-old, and see if I can make a go of it selling journals. (oh, and the other tinsy task of growing much of our family's food -- more on that later)

The mourning process from leaving a job that you have loved is a strange process. I do miss it, and everyone that I have worked with - but know that I have made the right decision for me. I think it's time to stop questioning my decisions and move forward - linen thread in hand!

Monday, April 5, 2010

Finally! A Use for Beets!

Okay,so this is something a little different. It just worked out so well, I had to share.
These are my Easter eggs. This year, instead of the store bought egg dye, I opted for food-based dyes. I made red, yellow, and blue; and then mixed to get orange, green, and
purple. And all I used was beets (red -seen here --> ), turmeric (yellow), and blueberries (blue). I ran the foods through a food processor, added a couple cups of water, and some vinegar, and boiled.
Here are my results...

I will definitely be doing this again next year!

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Collages for June show

I've been working quite a bit on some pieces for an upcoming show in June. Here are some pieces in progress. What I'm working on is handmade paper sheets of various fibers collaged with bits of nature and some other found objects. I'm trying to capture some of the beauty I see in the woods of Southeastern Ohio in the late autumn and winter. To many the woods are barren and grey. But if you look a bit closer, you can see a beautiful tapestry - and the promise of new things to come.
The top picture and middle picture are just placements of the collage. I have yet to sew them on to the handmade paper. The backing paper of the top piece is made from recycled linen pants and banana peels. The middle backing paper is made from cattail reeds. (compliments of my friend Rita)

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Migration Dream

I haven't just taken out all my papers and created a collage in such a long time. How fun. Should be done much more often. This, though was created for a workshop -- a Valentine workshop, no less! I taught a collage class last Saturday, in the guise of a Valentine making class. Only two people came, and in the spirit of seeing where things took us, we decided to ditch the "Valentine" theme. (and the more "traditional" Valentine making techniques I had planned)
We created some "wet" collage first. On a piece of freshly made, newly couched handmade paper, collage other thin papers on top. These papers should be dipped in a water-mod podge solution first. Then press and dry the papers as you normally would. The finished product is a collage that looks like it is part of the paper.
We also made some collages on 5x7 pieces of book board. I just had them choose from a bunch of paper I brought in. I brought in cut out images, lots of printed design paper, hand made paper, paste paper, unryu tissue (my favorite!), and old wrapping paper. Somehow this didn't even make a dent in my supplies at home. That's either really impressive, or really sad... We just put gesso on the board to prep it, and used mod podge (love it!) to paint our pieces on. So simple, and as always, so satisfying.
I really should do it more often. It's good for the soul.
This one I titled the minute I finished.
It's called "Migration Dream".

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

My goodness, has it been since September!??!! Well, the holiday season sure is a busy one for us crafty types... But now that 2010 is here, it is time to think about my upcoming show. This will be my first show -- and I am quite excited (and a little nervous).

I've been collecting sheets of handmade paper that I've been making over the past year or so, and plan on making collages out of them.

Here are some pieces for the first one I'm working on. The paper was made from scraps of pulp I've been collecting from the drain at the studio. I think it's made up of cotton, abaca, hemp, and flax -- plus some other random things I'm sure...

I'll post more as I work on it. The show isn't until June, so I've got plenty of time...

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Origami top

Thursday evening I met with my origami group. This is just a hand full of people who get together once a month, and well, fold. And fold. And fold.
The woman who heads it up recently returned from a national origami convention, and shared some new patterns with the group.
The first is a York rose. My attempt wasn't so great, but I'll try again. This is one piece of paper that is red on one side and green on the other.

The next is a top. It's made from three sheets. The smaller ones are from 6" sheets and the larger is from 12" sheets. The best part is that they actually spin! The larger one I made is from scrap booking paper and it is very sturdy. I gave it to my 23 month old daughter to play with. It has held up beautifully!
Here is one spinning...
These were so much fun to make. This is one I will definitely remember for Thanksgiving with the nieces and nephews...

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Marbling Fun!

This is only my second attempt at marbling. My first time was in a workshop setting. The class took place during the Friends of Dard Hunter conference (in Chillocothe, Ohio) and was taught by Ann Woods. She was wonderful, and as any talented person does, made it all look so easy. Maybe too easy. I took what I learned in this class of only a few hours, and years later thought I could do it again.
Here's a sample from that workshop:

In Ann's class, we did marbling that was typically European. What I attempted last week was suminagashi, which is Japanese marbling. There are differences, but I think the spirit of it was the same.
I was working with my friend Rita at Paper Circle, and we just had a kit to work with.
Here's Rita adding the pigment with a brush:
This is the handmade paper floating on top of water. It just takes the pigment off the top of the water when you lift the paper. Amazing, really...:
The kit came with rice paper, but the colors were so washed out. We quickly realized that handmade paper was the way to go. Though they may not be technically good, I think they came out really great. I'm thinking book covers.... These are some of my favorites: