Saturday, March 31, 2007

The upper right and lower left ATCs are Iris folds using pieces of food labels (the swap theme). The bottom right is a paper weave technique, and the upper left is shown in detail here, a collaged "goddess".

This was an Iris Fold postcard swap. I'd never made one before and was totally intrigued by the process. I used different colored inner sides of security envelopes from junkmail and bills for the paper and made a five-sided pattern. Then I made a few more for another ATC swap.

ATC and random art pics

So I thought I'd post some more pics of various things swapped in Swap-bot and Group swaps.
This one is froma Numbers Countdown Swap-bot swap/ I like the one in the upper left best--it's called "When owners start to look like their pets"

Spring and thoughts of space!

Spring has finally sprung. The nights are still cold, but the sun was warm today while we began our annual garage clearing project. It seems like we clear it out and it fills right back up mysteriously over the winter. The truck is full of junk going to the dump, I have a big bag of stuff for the Salvation Army and another even larger pile of stuff to freecycle. I have motivation this year, more than before to clear out, because I really want studio space up there. We built a room in the back corner with electric outlets at desk level all along the walls, and either Fred will work his computer shop there, or I'll do art up there--we may have to flip for it! I'm more tempted to convert the whole thing into a house though, it's almost three times larger than The Little House (the 400sq ft cottage we share with the cat).
I can visualize a beautiful big eat-in kitchen, a bathroom with a tub and a shower, two bedrooms, a living/family/greatroom. It could be really nice! Large windows on the back wall could look out over the lovely view of the woods and the brook at the bottom of the 'ravine', and a pergola built over the parking apron on the front would hold a flowering wisteria or some other beautiful flowering vine to give us shade to sit under in the summer. ~sigh~ At least I can dream :)

Second Successful Small Art Workshop

It was low-key but fun. We had 12 people show up to the second workshop, this one for adults, though there were 5 girls there, too. We are starting a club that will meet on the third Saturday of each month from 12-3pm, so we'll see what happens there. I'm hoping we can eventually work up some swaps with other clubs out there in the world, perhaps through a yahoo group or Swap-bot.


Wednesday, March 07, 2007

And Who, might you ask, is Gloria Page???

I'm about halfway through Holy, Moly, Mackeroly! a wonderful kind of autobiography by Gloria Page. This is the very first book that I can remember reading(with pleasure) that was not some sort of fiction, aside from cookbooks and art/craft/woodworking/pottery how-to books.
Sci-fi, Fantasy, Fairy Tales, that's my usual reading material, with perhaps the occasional Historical Fiction or Bodice-ripper thrown in in the summertime.
All through my school years, well into college I could barely keep my eyes open long enough to read anything "required", ie: textbooks, novels (for Contemporary American Lit), etc. When I got this, I thought it was going to be another of the many, many how-to art/craft books I buy regularly. I started reading it though and found it so different, and so fascinating! that I keep going back to it daily for a few pages at a time and sometimes a few chapters! Her style of writing is so pleasantly familiar and conversational, that it keeps my deficient attention for long moments at a time (a challenge for the best literature!)

I also find it to be one of those magical things that you run into now and then in your life, I read the stories and connect with them in many parts of my own story. While different in many ways, we are very similar in spirit I think, and, imagine my great surprise when I read that her grandmother's name is Gagne--just like mine!!! Even though Gagne, in Canada, is much like Smith here in the states, it's in interesting coincidence--we could possibly be cousins!
She also grew up in CT, where I was born and have lived on and off for most of my life (even now) She speaks of places I know and have been to or passed by at times when under other circumstances, we might have actually met! Fascinating.

I would love to meet her sometime, after I finish the book, and perhaps obtain others of hers. I heard recently she was having health problems, and I want to send out into the ether through this blog all the best and healthiest thoughts and vibes I have to send to my "cousin" and hope all comes good and she gets through the crisis with flying colors.

What is Art all about?

I'm an artist. There, I've said it. I'm not "an emerging artist" or a "newbie artist" or anything else less than the real thing. It's taken me a while to come to this decision, but I realized that I really live when I'm making, practicing, teaching, talking about, or just enjoying art, so much so that everything I see can be described in artistic terms--colors, textures, smells, sounds, tastes--it's all there in everything, and art is everything, expressed in forms and media that are manipulatable and can capture thoughts and emotions, images and imaginings.
So, when I pick up some scraps of paper, or bits of junk from the ground, I see in them the potential to be more than what they are, but all that they are at the same time. When I pick up a paintbrush, pen, pencil or rubber stamp--the potential is there, too.

Collage is the thing I am busily exploring right now. It encompasses all the media I like the best--photography or printed images, painting, assemblage--a little sculpture, composition and playing with glue and acrylic medium. It's fun and very expressive, bringing things out of your inner being and onto the paper, celebrating the past by bringing old parts out new and fresh into the present whole.

Altered books are scary at first! What!? You want me to tear pages out of that book!? Don't people go to Library Hell for that!? Of course not! Old books that no one wants anymore, need to be reborn as something new and exciting. Rather than see them sit in a cellar rotting away or being eaten by mice and bookworms, I can tear, cut, fold, glue, paint and otherwise alter them into something really cool! And, there are places on the internet where I have found many other people who do the same thing, and are willing to swap pages with me! How cool is that? I now have over 2 dozen lovely, interesting, inspiring, intriguing works of art that I can tip-in to my altered book and make a new journal of contemporary art to enjoy for many years to come. I hope that my granddaughter will love them as much as I do!

What is your art? What inspires you?

Thursday, March 01, 2007

Second Small Art Workshop-Mar 24

I'm doing another free small art workshop at the Putnam Library, March 24 from 12-4 (I think)--I can't remember the exact times, but it's in the afternoon, and for adults only this time. I'm going to try to set up another kid's workshop sometime, too.

We will focus on ATCs and Alteredbooks in this one, and also talk about forming a club that will meet regularly and perhaps do some swaps with other clubs. I'm going to be talking with Pat at the Library soon and will post the real details soon.