Wednesday, November 30, 2005

A dinosaur with a book in his chest

instruction manual for the end (of the world)

This book is titled Instruction Manual for the End (of the World.) It sold to someone in L. A. and I haven’t seen him (the book) for ages. I know art is supposed to be about the process, but the objects I make are mostly very personal and I sometimes hate to see them go.

I decided to make another, similar book. This time I want paper pages in a copper cover. To start the new book, I found some great dinosaurs on ebay. The one I’m using is about 8 inches tall.

using sewing weights for collage

Here are two pages in progress.

Usually I have an idea for the inside of the book and complete one two-page spread, then work out from there, doing the cover last. This has been a problem at times. Sometimes I don’t make much progress and have different ideas and even a slightly different style over time.

This time I thought I would try to block in all the pages first, with a ground and sky. The ground is collaged and the sky is painted. Then I’ll go back and do the final collage and painting to finish them off. When the pages are finished I’ll have a clearer idea of what to do with the cover. I have a rough sketch of all the pages to work from.

Right now I’m putting the details on each page. They look a little too plain to me, so I think I’ll go back and paint a light wash over them and add some scratchiness.

I’m using sewing weights to hold down the pages. I wanted to glue the red and gold ray across both pages. To keep the pages from moving while I work on them I use sewing weights. They are about an inch high and just right for the scale of my work. They came six in a set from JoAnn’s, a fabric store. When the glue is dry I can cut through the center of the two pages with an exacto knife to separate them.

Sunday, November 27, 2005

Am I selfish?

Why a blog? I have been thinking about how to put some tips on my web site for awhile. It occurs to me that a blog might be the best interactive way to get the information to people, and give them a chance to ask for clarification or to ask questions. If you have taken a workshop or class with me you know I always tell people they can contact me at anytime with questions. A blog seems like an easy way to make that possible.

Who are these people I expect to read the blog? Mostly my past students. We often have interesting discussions in class about how to solve a particular problem. Sometimes an idea pops into my head much later. I can’t always remember who was trying to solve the problem. There is always something new to learn, some trick to add to a technique.

What about the selfish aspect? Well, I am also, of course, thinking of myself. I would like to have more people coming to my web site. I would also like more contact with fellow artists. At the moment I can’t go to the BABA meetings, and it’s been hard for me to get to the meetings of a critique group I would like to join. I am hoping I will be more motivated to get into the studio and work if I’m going to have to report to (even invisible) people, that I have been working. And hearing about other’s struggles with getting time and motivation might be helpful for me.

How often will I post? My plan is to post a tip a week and to post one other time in the week about the work I’m doing and how it’s going.