Sunday, November 27, 2011

freebie images - encyclopedia pages 1

I bought a bunch of old dictionaries and encyclopedias while in Visalia. Two encyclopedia volumes had fabulous full page drawings of a variety of things. I tore them all out, scanned them at 300dpi, and hereby make them available to you. They'd be great printed over top of old wallpaper patterns or flowered papers. Perfect for layering in collages or gluebook pages.

Here are the first three pages. I'll share many more over the next week or so.

Please don't sell the sheets of images but you're welcome to sell items you've made using them. I'd love it if you'd link back so others can find and use these. Enjoy.

Friday, November 18, 2011

steampunk mailart

I just finished a doodled postcard swap for swapbot. Once you were assigned a partner, you looked at their profile, then doodled something they'd like on their card. No need to be a great artist, it's just supposed to be fun. My victim partner was into steampunk and as I thought about it, I knew I didn't want to just doodle something on a piece of cardstock.

It needed atmosphere.

I poked thru my old books and tore the back cover off an old edition of Treasure Island. I glued an aged blank page from another book onto the cover, then lettered the word(s?) 'steampunk' onto it. I sort of tangled the letters a bit, stamped a couple images and some sequin waste, then glued on a few old metal bits from my little collection of junk, including an old key. Put grommets in the top corners in case she likes it enough to hang it on the wall, plus an extra at the bottom just for the hell of it. Maybe she can add her own chains and charms or whatever steam punkers are into.

The other side is the inside back cover illustration of a ship on the high seas. Some previous owner made a check mark that I just ignored.

I gave it a good coating of gloss gel and varnish to protect it a bit, and I'm mailing it off tomorrow. God know if it'll get there in one piece - it's old and somewhat brittle. We'll see.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

free images - from an old book

I tore these from an old book some time ago. The lady with the monkey fascinates me. A monkey? Maybe they were more common as house pets back then? And I love the couple on the stairs. What's the story there? He has her parasol in one hand and some books. On the way to the park? Or they're back from the park and she's peeved with him for some reason. He looks like he's trying to placate her, doesn't he? Come on, honey. I just glanced at her for a second.

Click on the pic to embiggen, then right click to save. scanned at 300dpi

just give me a gun...

I said, get back in the kitchen and finish them dishes!

I believe this is Bonnie and Clyde, but the caption is gone so I'm not sure. It was stuck in an old Life mag I bought while in Visalia. He doesn't look real worried so maybe he knows the gun isn't loaded. I like her shoes.

Winnie and the great pumpkin

A friend at work gave me a pumpkin the other day, left over from Halloween with her kids. My intent was to whack it up, bake it, and make pumpkin puree so that I could make some of the yummy-looking pumpkin recipes that are all over the net right now.

But after wrestling the thing around the kitchen for ten minutes just trying to get it cut up and gutted, I cried 'uncle' and gave the bottom half to the bird. Winnie is about 5 inches tall, a small mean as a pit of snakes African red-bellied parrot with a bite like a barracuda, and the pumpkin was about 14" tall and in diameter, so the bottom half was huge and at first he was a little scared of it when I plunked it on top of his cage. But Winnie is nothing if not foolishly brave, so after a couple moments he climbed up onto the edge. He stayed up there for about 20 minutes, ripping hunks off the rind and flinging seeds around the kitchen and picking pumpkin slime off his feet. He didn't jump in and wade around the middle of it like he did with my plate of spaghetti last year and my bowl of cereal last week.

I made pumpkin fries (along with sweet potato fries) and pitched the rest over the fence for the wild critters. I'm sure homemade pumpkin puree is wonderful but I'll take mine in a can, thanks. My poor hands just can't handle the weight and gripping that goes into cutting up a big pumpkin.

See the big bite marks in the foreground? I have scars shaped just like that.

I got pumpkin slime on my feets.

That thing at bottom left is a flip-flop that he's been working on for a month or so.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

free images - Christmas postcard

Here is the front and back of a lovely old postcard that was among my maternal grandma's things. I especially love the green border on this one. It's embossed, as you can see from the back. If you make something from it, I'd love to see.

Click on images, then right click to save. scanned at 300dpi

Monday, November 7, 2011

FTB journal #2

For my second FTB journal I used an old book cover. It was pretty boring, so I dropped some India ink on it, then blew it around with a straw. Much better. From my silk ribbon embroidery days, I have boxes and boxes of the stuff in all colors and width, ruffled, sparkly, hand dyed, you name it. I want to use it up cause I'll never get the value out of it by selling it, so I cut a bunch of 8"-10" lengths of just about every color, then folded them over and sewed them to the center fabric tape. Definitely an odd look but I like it well enough. It's very tactile and interactive, just begs you to fluff up the strands and run your fingers thru them.

The signatures are made up from the signature swap we did in the group, plus some I'd made. Actually, I haven't photographed those yet, so I guess this post is just about the cover! Well, there's one shot of the journal standing up so you get a glimpse of the pages.

I'd neglected to watch the 'preparing to bind' vid before I got my cover and pages ready,
so I spent a completely useless hour making holes in the thick book cover.
After I realized my @#$%* mistake, I decided to put grommets in the holes
and call them a design feature!

Silk ribbon lusciousness.

All sorts of fun pages made from such a wide variety of papers. It's so much fun to see other people's work.

The bound signatures with my tapestry fabric tapes. 

Kelly Kilmer's journal class - lots of pics

For being near such a large, artsy city, there seems to be a real dearth of art classes of the sort I'm interested in. But - recently Kelly Kilmer came to Oakland and taught 3 days worth of classes in a private home. I went for the Sunday class, which was a collage journal class, First you made your journal, then you collaged in it.

We chose two pieces of handmade paper which, glued together, became the journal cover, then we stitched in one large signature of 140lb watercolor paper. She hauled along a huge duffel bag of collage papers of all sorts - magazine pages, book pages, handmade papers, wrapping paper, etc - which we dug thru as we chose a pile of stuff that appealed to us. Then we worked our way thru 5 different pages, as Kelly directed us where to put various elements such as the focal point, the background, tape and so on. I've collaged enough that I'm comfortable with it, but it's still fun to work to someone else's tune and with materials that are new to you.

The pages are shown in the order I did them. Not sure if there's any difference to be seen as I worked or not. I collaged on only the right side page and think I'll journal on the left.
green outer cover, gray inside, black thread binding, with
ends knotted and left hanging, a look I like

The scruffy white strip near the top is part of the spine of a book.
It was in the collage bin and I liked the texture of it so I glued it down.

I like the colors in this one. I've always liked gray and the bits of yellow and red are just enough.

I love this circus image. I used to imagine I was a circus lady, riding a horse in a spangled tutu.
Me in the tutu, not the horse.

I like this one. Something about the b/w image with the sparkly turquoise accent.

A study in blues.

Lots of paper tape and stamping. And greens.

Friday, November 4, 2011

and so winter begins...

I live in a windy town. A few years ago we got gusts that hit 62mph. That's really windy when you're just trying to walk across the parking lot to your car. There were tumbleweeds the size of Volkswagens rolling down the streets. Crazy.

Yesterday wasn't that bad but late in the afternoon, a wind sprang up that set all the piles of leaves to dancing along the sidewalk, swirling them up into leafy tornadoes now and then. A storm was blowing in and the cloud formations were gorgeous. Here are some shots from around 5pm yesterday. Notice the lean angle on the (blurry) trees shot from my car window while driving. Every tree in town has a permanent eastward lean like that, plus the wind was blowing the tops over even more.


Wednesday, November 2, 2011

this & that

1. Blueberry dye. I always keep a little tub of thawed Costco organic blueberries in the fridge for cereal, pancakes, scones - whatever. As they thaw, they release some juice. I usually pour it off but the other day, I put it in a small dish, added a splash of vinegar for mordant, and plopped in a few small pieces of lace. A minute in the microwave to set it, then I rinsed it out and let it dry. Wa-la. A lovely lavender.

2. Sunrise. I love sunrise. It's maybe my favorite time of day, even if I'm not actually up for it most of the time. Last week I was driving to an event out in the boonies and rounded a bend to find the rising sun lighting up the hills. I immediately pulled over and snapped a couple gorgeous pics.

3. Poppy pics. I planted some pots for the back yard the other day and among the various flowers were a couple poppy plants. One evening, I noticed that one of them had a couple blooms. It was a bit dark so I shot with a flash and a very shallow depth of field. It came out very dramatic.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

ROD journal #1

I signed up for Mary Ann Moore's 2nd class - Full Tilt Boogie - a few months ago and it was pretty cool, so I signed up for her first one - Remains of the Day - a couple weeks ago. Equally cool. This one has a cloth cover and since I have tons of upholstery fabrics and laces and doilies, I had a really good time working on it. The pages are sewn together using the remains of your day, or whatever you feel like incorporating. I used practically everything I had in the studio - scrapbook paper, old envelopes, ledger pages, paper bags, lace, old photos, pre-cut frames, part of a small folded book I made as a sample - all sorts of stuff.

This journal falls right into my liking of variety - I love a deli where you can have a little bit of a whole bunch of things, I like scrap quilts because of all the fabrics, I like thrift stores cause there's some of everything. So what some might look at and see a total hodge-podge of stuff, I am fascinated by the endless new bits to see every time I flip thru it. I haven't journaled in it yet. I might make it my Australia journal, long after the fact since we were there in 2005, but I have lots of pics and notes, so I'll be able to make a cool memory book of the trip.

Anyway, here are a bunch of pics. It has a total of 48 pages but I'm only making you look at the more interesting ones for now. If you think it's cool, I strongly encourage you to go sign up for her class. It's well worth the money.
back cover
front cover tied
front cover without tie

inside cover and 1st page