Monday, April 23, 2007

Sunday Morning Rewind

Sunday mornings back in the day (aka when Marty had a day job outside the home), Aisha and I would go to Donkey to review our week, prepare for the week ahead, plan and just get outta the house. We haven't been able to do that as much (mainly from enjoying sleeping in, but I digress) but yesterday we were both up and it was a perfect day for the new upstairs.

Here she is, looking thrilled to be photographed. I was sitting in the maroon chair.

Here's the view from the chairs in one direction. I didn't think to take a photo of the windows. It was balmy enough that they were open and the air smelled good (no smokers outside at the tables) and it was relatively quiet (college town on Sunday morning, do the math :) and it was sunny. The ambience was a lot like my studio when it is clean and sunny (it has been clean more than dirty lately because of the major reorganization and purge, sunny started being more regular as of last week). It's good to be home :)

Show Prep

For some reason I just never thought about displaying the finished beadwork this way, despite having three pieces on painted canvas and one piece professionally framed. But something clicked (I think it is called I am hanging a show in one week) and yesterday I spent painting canvases and sewing beadworks to them.

Desert Moon III, beadwork and machine embroidery on cotton. Canvas is painted with Jo Sonya acrylic gouache and then a coat of Lumiere Holo Violet paint.

Desert Moon II, Starry Night Redux, and Mother and Child.

Red and White #1, snazzy Target turtle bag (blinged up by me) in foreground)

Fossils, and Water's Edge. Fossils is more machine work with puff paint and some bead enhancement, but I was on a roll. :)

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Embellishing the Home

The first vending opportunity of the season is two weeks away and I have been madly prepping. In addition to the pins I made last week, I've been working on these:

Light switch plate embellished with shells and buttons.

I like this one a lot. Fun green buttons, many vintage. I use Delta Sparkle Coat on the base paint layer for extra glitz and added a few extra glitters on top for more depth. You can see some of the others at my flickr.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

The Embellished Cookie

Today is Donkey's great grand opening and gifting for their new upstairs and their 5th anniversary. I made smaller lemon cutouts than usual, but Izzy still decorated with his same panache.

Izzy and his work in process.

A closeup of the cookies in process. See how exuberant he is with the colored sugar sprinkles!

The rest of the pictures are at my flickr, including a great one of the afterimage left by the baked on sugar sprinkles :)

Monday, April 16, 2007

More Mosaic Meanderings

This one just tickles me. I incised a line in the mastic with a toothpick to give a guide to create the spiral. Seed and cheesy plastic beads fill the areas. The fish is from my second favorite Yankee Trader (first favorite being Archie McPhee).

And Bambi Steps Out. In the vein of be careful what you focus on, a few years ago I was creating felt ATC in a winter theme. I really really wanted to put some deer into them and was focused on finding a deer. Well, instead of the nice plastic cake decorating deer I wanted, what we got was a deer in the hood of our car. Eventually I did find my plastic deer, seen here:

And you'd better believe I am a lot more specific when making requests of The Universe since that happened.

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Working Through the Book

Over at my livejournal, there is a community working on a year long self art retreat. The current project/challenge is to pick a book you already own and work through in within a month. I didn't think I'd have time, given everything else going on, but I happened upon Maggie Grey's Raising the Surface, and the stuff fits in with what I'm already doing and I want to play. So here are the first results:

First you create a background by fusing Angelina fibers or wool roving or silk top to a base fabric. I used a piece of felt from JoAnn's and tried to sandwich some silk top under some silk organza. Organza doesn't seem to melt the way the "chiffon" described in the book does, so I was left to try painting on fusible interfacing and ironing that on. It covered too completely, so I tried using the heat gun on it. I think I need a bigger heat gun. So then I used some fusible powder and wool top, then added some mica flakes for texture. The foreground is some Angelina like fibers my MIL gave me when she moved, and in lieu of mica, I used sequins. Parchment paper is a must for all steps.

And in the next section, she talks about raising the surface. And one technique is to fill tubular ribbons with stuff. She suggested making your own tubes if you didn't have ribbon, and as I have two spools of tulle left over from Dita, that's exactly what I did. I chose to stuff it with another shade of wool top I got from The Thread Studio, and tied at regular intervals. I want to felt it next and see what happens (the tubing is not attached to the background and may not be a part of this piece at all).

More to come, but first I gotta do what I gotta do :)

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Mosaic, Embellish, Recycle

What do you do with old nametags? If you're me you find something to do with them. In this case, I used my standby Golden's Tar Gel on parts, and plain mastic cement on others, to create these:

Chanticleer, he includes delicas in the background. The mastic cement was tinted using Createx Pigment colors in blue.

Bird in Garden. Old magnets from a yard sale, new buttons and rhinestones. The bird is a silkscreened tin piece I've had for years. He is still in process as I'd like the background to be a bit more opaque. :)

Fishy fantasy, just a fish swimming in the sea. Love the bubbles.

Octopus moon. More stash stuff. I love little things and always loved making dioramas.

Aqueduct my friend, don't you start away uneasy. Well, anyway. He could be swimming above the layers of rock. Either way, he was fun to make. More to see at my flickr.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Early One Morning

While the sun was still shining, dark clouds lurked. But it sure is pretty while the contrast is going on. This is the view out our kitchen window, from one angle.

Monday, April 9, 2007

Ms Spider

I may call her Nancy. She is bigger than the other creatures I've been making , primarily because I wanted a large area to explore the lovely purple fur I used for her body. She'll be lounging in her web soon enough, chatting with a friendly fly who stopped by.

And closeup of body and head.

I am skipping out on a bra meeting at the moment. It's too cold to be sociable. Grr.

Ghosts of Birthdays Past

In the past few years I have been making myself a little something something for my birthday. The one above is a Nepalese bone inlay pendant with Thai silver, peridot and India glass, also a few Peru ceramic rondelles. I always get compliments when I wear it.

And last year's piece, a Netsuke mermaid, Czech glass presed beads, a little Swarovski, and Japanese seed beads in size 11/0 and 15/0. Delicate but tells the story.

Beady Bounty

Saturday we were able to go to Columbus for Mr. Toad's Wild Ride (aka let's get out of town and go play! :) I kept seeing this bead shop, but they were never open when we were there, but we specifically made time to go there, and I was able to get the beads to finish my trip to the moon necklace.

Full view. Bottom is right angle weave base worked off of the cabochon moon and embellished with star beads and 3mm firepolish in marea finish. Three dimensional peyote stitch rocket ship and peyote stitch at the top for the necklace part.

Strung Czech glass in vitrail with a pitted moon-rock like appearance, and the store's exclusive Greek ceramic beads, with just a hint of miracle bead (the white spots; they're really lime green). Meteorites floating in space.

And for my annual beadwork present to myself, poppy field in process. I actually was able to use all stash beads for this so far, even the buttons were from my home collection (I did buy some volcano swarovski for the centers, but they were too small). I am not sure whether this will be a bracelet/cuff or a necklace yet. Stay tuned for updates as it progresses.

Saturday, April 7, 2007

Snow for my Birthday?

Ok, this hasn't happened in at least twenty years, and that time it had snowed on April 4th so we had residual snow (it takes a while for eight inches of snow to melt).

This is the view out my front door this morning. It looks like Ed's lights are on but that is just a reflection.

This is a tighter closeup of Jim and Lucy's driveway and the hillside at the end of my street. They razed the trees last winter, just in that bare patch you can see there. I don't know why, because the trees are still lying on the ground out there. But this gives a good idea of the snow cover. And if you look closely you can see the green in the trees right behind the houses.

Wednesday, April 4, 2007

Donkey Show Preview

So I finally came up with a plan for my upcoming show at Donkey Coffee. The theme is "Jardin Fantastique" and will comprise of art made about the denizens of my garden. These two are still in process, though "Koi to the World" does have a title, little honeybee does not (I like to call her Queen Bee).

Honeybee, stash fabrics, approximately 18" x 18". Sequins in the wings and iridescent fabric for the crown. Silk flower and button complete her look.

And Koi to the World, more stash fabrics. Holographic quilting threads for the water and around the body of my little fish. This piece is approximately 18" x 22". I also used holographic sequins for some of the scales and added a few shisha mirrors for pizazz.

Detail of the scales and fins with machine drawing. Both are made on a patchwork base, the main image is reverse applique my way (involves the use of Pellon and making a big drawing).

Just two of the fantasmagoric pieces that will be hanging at Donkey Coffee May 26-July 1 2007. Y'all come on down! (or up, or over....)