Monday, June 30, 2014

MMSA paperbag book - incoming

Received my paper bag booklet today. Actually, it's prolly been out in the mail box for a few days but only collect the mail a couple times a week, despite the fact that it's about 50 feet from my front door. Just seems like too much trouble at the end of a long day at work. #lazybroad

It's from Laurie Morris and it's great. I love the colors. I'm not sure if Karen knows that or not but she more often than not sends me just what I wanted in the swaps. It's difficult to tell in the photos but the splotches of what looks like brown are actually metallic bronze which contrasts marvelously with the blues and greens. Each page has a flap that's either blank or with a quote on it. And each pocket held several pieces of painted papers to use in my art, last photo. Thanks, Laurie!


MMSA paperbag book - outgoing

Another fun swap from Karen. Four lunch bags, decorated however you like, bound into a small book. The one I sent out is up first. I gelli printed both sides of four bags. Takes longer than it sounds cause I did several layers on every side. I made four small collages, one each for the four open ends of the bags that become pockets to tuck things into when you bind the bags together. I also glued on half an envelope and stuck a small booklet into it, made from Pamela's tutorial. It's a cool little booklet. I've since made 8 or 10 of them and had to force myself to stop tearing out likely magazine pages to fold up into covers. Give it a try.

Pamela's Chinese booklet

When Pamela of Cappuccino and Art Journal fame was here last Monday (click on the link to go to her post [with pics] about the day), she gifted me with a cute little booklet she's made using mostly papers she'd found in San Francisco's Chinatown. The cover is a little paper bag, and the pages are a wide variety of things including joss papers, which I wasn't familiar with before.

As I told her at the time, red isn't really one of my go-to colors, and Chinese isn't on my top ten list of countries to visit, but I became more charmed by the booklet the longer I looked thru it. I'm contemplating actually using it, tho not sure for what yet. I expect something will present itself and the booklet will be perfect for whatever it is. Thanks, Pamela!

The cover, turned sideways so you can see it as the bag it was.
Front cover on top, about 4"x4".

The penmanship pages are very cool.

evolution of an art journal page

I like in-progress posts where I can see how an artist got from a blank sheet of paper to a finish art journal page, so thought I'd do one, because, for some reason or other, I took pics of this one along the way. The background is pale yellow with green smudgey marks from large bubble wrap.

My pages rarely have any meaning, deep or otherwise, and this one is no exception. I do not plumb the depths of my angst nor the heights of my joy when I do these. I simply cut out things that look cool or interest me for some reason, and try to make them into a whole. That said, this page is loosely inspired by an art journal page by Teesha Moore that has a winged figure on it.

Just cutting out likely elements and laying them on the page.
Her body is the upside down top to a large bottle of perfume from a magazine ad.

Rearranged them a bit, added a head piece. No gluing yet.

Changed out the left side scallops and added a building.

Changed out the wings, added 15 cents, and the square right edge.
Glued everything down at this point.

Looked bare at the top so found some more elements.

Added center circle to her head piece. Did a lot of pen work and it's done.
Somewhere along the way I stuck a piece of gluey newspaper
to it and made a mess on her face, head piece and square border. 

Sunday, June 29, 2014

MMSA houses

Got inspired at the 11th hour and made a couple postcards for Karen's house swap. Misc paper backgrounds with gelli print houses, roofs and windows. A bit of text, paint, and some doodling. Pretty simple when you state it like that but they came out cute.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

me & Connie & found poetry

One of the recent themes in my ongoing swaps with Connie was found poetry, something I really enjoy. Ours are both ridiculous, just how I like them best.

I started off with a gelli print background. I had the fish already in my goody box. Found the lady in a 1946 American Home mag. The text came from various magazines, and the scallop was cut freehand from a carpet catalog. Did some doodling and mailed it off.

Connie's is great, and I got it before I made mine, so I sort of riffed on hers for inspiration. Crazy poetry. Love Eva Peron flinging her kitchen gloves off while wearing her heels. And that apron belongs on a French parlor maid.

gelli session (lots of pics)

We have Pamela from Cappuccino and Art Journal to thank for this post. She admired the envelopes I posted a while ago, we emailed back and forth a few times and without too much trouble, talked ourselves into Pamela coming to visit for a day. Last Monday she took BART from San Francisco, I picked her up from the station nearest my house, and we spent the day in my studio and gelli printing lab (aka my kitchen), stopping only to go get huge sandwiches from the local deli.

We each churned out a lot of deli paper, envelopes, and book pages while yapping non-stop. We'd never met in person but have been exchanging mail art for a while. We swapped "where I live" booklets a while back - I really need to post about that because it was a lot of fun. Anyway, we hit it off great and once we got to my house, we never stopped talking and laughing unless our mouths were full.

Too. Much. Fun.

No matter how much you keep in touch online, there is simply no substitute for getting together. I'd post more about our visit, except that I didn't take a single damn picture. Crazy, I know. And sooo unlike me but I know Pamela did, so when she posts about her visit, I'll direct you over there. She did gift me with a cool little booklet which deserves its own post.

Double click each pic to see it large, the best way to look at gelli prints. Over the year and a half I've been gelli-ing, I've learned that I have no desire to make pictures like some folks are doing. I don't even especially care for specific stencils or masks, such as leaves or silhouettes. I really love the random patterns made from lots of layers of various marks such as bubble wrap, pattern stencils, etc. And I love the grungy ones, which is why I never clean my plate or my brayers.

Envelope with hand made foam addy stamp.

Love doing gelli prints on book pages.

Huge bubble wrap that was pressed into rolled out paint
on the plate to make marks, then pressed
onto this page to use up the picked up paint.

The design is the bottom of a card board egg carton
pressed into the rolled out paint.
Open your eyes to *everything* when thinking
about what you can make marks with.

I squirted paint onto the plate, then wandered off
to talk to Pamela about something.
When I came back and rolled out the paint,
it still left the swirl imprint. Interesting.


I haven't made a batch of postcards in a while, just for the heck of it, so last night I got a few done after dinner and as a mental bribe to myself before getting up and doing a couple days worth of dishes. Yes, I'm not proud of it but I don't do my dishes every day. My name is Leslie and I always have a sink full of dishes. Not that I truly mind washing dishes - there's just always something more fun to do instead. And for only two people, we generate a lot of dirty dishes.

Anyway, I digress.

These aren't assigned yet, so if one of them grabs you, speak up in the comments and I'll send it your way.
The background is two different deli gelli prints, flowers and words cut from magazines,
some pen work and a little shading with gel sticks.
This was a case of liking the background but being unable to decide what to do next.
I finally tried what I've read that some folks do and that is to just pick up the first thing that catches your eye and glue it down. That's how I ended up with red flowers and orange letters on a turq and lime background.
Not normally something I'd do but I like the finished product.

Background is a telephone book white pages, book text and deli gelli paper.
I've had the man cut out for a while just waiting for inspiration
and this particular background worked for him. Same with the words.
Found them while sifting thru my little box of words and phrases and they just fit.
Some pen work and shading.
Also stamped some circles with black paint and the top of my glue stick.

Background is book text. The stamp of the girl came on an envelope.
Words from my word box, a bit of deli gelli, pen work, shading, circles.
So pretty much the same recipe for all three of these
and yet they're all quite different, which is why mixed media is my fave art form!

Monday, June 23, 2014

icad 16-21

Falling behind a bit but knocked out a few of these this evening. Still having fun with it.

Found this series of shots of this weird guy in a magazine and when I came across the phrase weeks later I knew they were meant for each other. And looking at this now, the pale lips were meant to have 'color envy' for the red lipstick, but it just looks like I screwed up and didn't choose red lips for this collage. Ah, well...
My mother never wore any makeup that I can remember except her red lipstick. I tried it when I was younger and felt I could pull it off when I was all dressed up, but it seemed very conspicuous otherwise. and now I never wear any.

Random magazine images and a phrase that fit.
Gelli print deli paper, dress pattern tissue, used tea bags, and a phrase on vellum.

Kind of a lame one. Wanted to use the elephant but then couldn't really find anything to go with him. <sigh>
A sentence that just needed the right ladies. Found them in an old magazine. Shorthand manual border.

Monday, June 16, 2014

back yard tour

Our back yard has a large raised bed around one side and halfway across the back. It was full of weeds and weird bushes when we moved in so we gutted it, put in some fruit trees and planted various veggies and herbs. This is our 3rd summer here and the bed has changed  each year. There's another whole half of the yard to the right of all these pics. I'll cover it another day.

This was January 2013. See the Christmas tree laying back there in the center? Also a lot of herbs on the right and a tomato or pepper or something on the left. The fruit trees are dormant, it's raining. Typical January.

This was this morning on our little peach tree that hasn't been in the ground a year yet. It had 5 peaches this year and each of them was huge, gorgeous and delicious. This one is the size of my fist and just beautiful. We'll be eating it on our cereal tomorrow morning.

This was an abortive attempt to photograph the peach but I like the shadows.

A shot of the corner this morning. We planted late so everything is still small altho there are peppers and tomatoes here and there. That's a Meyer lemon in a pot at right, with various potted flowers on stands around it, a little island in all that concrete.
A more straight on view. Peach tree at back left, apricot tree at back right. A better view of the lemon tree island.

And a long shot from the end, standing out in the lawn. Bough the cart for $3 at a yard sale last summer. Got the tubs for free from a trash pile. To the left of this area is a step down, then a covered patio that's just outside our kitchen and family room, so we get a nice view of the yard and garden from the two rooms we use the most. I sprinkle birdseed out here twice a day and really enjoy watching the doves, sparrows, finches and jays who come and peck around.

flowers in the house

Pretty much the only time I manage to think of bringing flowers inside is when SmallButCharming does her occasional Monday call for flowers in the house. I don't have a lot of cutting flowers but did manage to come up with some lavender, a few springs of tea tree, and a couple salvia stems. Very pretty on the mantle. No idea who the wedding couple it. It's just a vintage photo from an antique shop. I have about a hundred of them and change them out now and then.

icad 9 thru 14

All collage, all the time with this week's cards. Sad to say, I made 4 of the 6 yesterday. So much for art every day. Sometimes I'm just too whipped by the end of a 9.5 hr day and I just crash on the couch with a book. Then days like yesterday come along, where I spent at least 7 hours making art at the kitchen table, so I guess I don't really need icad to get me to art regularly - I've been in the habit for years now. Still, I'm enjoying using these cards, making these small scenes and finding silly text for them.

June 9 is dress pattern tissue, part of a playing card that already had a hole torn in it for some reason I don't remember, pic of a nerdy guy from an old ad showing thru, test stamps for an arrow stamp I carved a while back, and some book text.
June 10 is all bits pulled from my box of stuff I cut out in the evening in front of the tv.

June 11 is more misc parts pulled together (sort of lol) to make a whole. I'd cut the girl's eye out previously for something else and the cat just seemed to fit there. This is a really odd bunch of stuff and I'm glad to see my mind can do this type of thing. I used to be way too tightly wrapped to make weird collages but I'm getting better at it.
June 12 another oddball. Fish tail left over from postcard for friend, turtles also ended up unused on postcard so ended up here. Vase and sign from cut out box. No rhyme or reason to this one either. #strangeday #minimalist

June 13 didn't intend to make 13 of something for the 13th, but saw circles in my cut outs box and decided to do all circles. Counted them after and had 13. Huh. Couldn't find a big 3 in magazine so cut off one side of a B.
June 14 Lady from 1946 American Home mag, other stuff from who knows where. I kept coming across the "book-of" and "the month" as I was poking thru text box and it looks like she's holding a prototype of an iPad so the text fit.