Monthly Archives

April 2014

1 Favorite Book for April & 2 Tangential Inspirational Favorites

By | Four Favorite Books

It’s happened again. Today is the last day of the month and by now I should have shared my 4 favorite books with you…but…but…but I didn’t read any books this month. Not one.

However, I do have 1 favorite book to share anyway — I didn’t read it (it’s 99% pictures), but I had a great time mentally reorganizing its contents into new collections — which I’ll tell you a bit more about in a minute.

The book is the one I mentioned my friend Betsy Balch loaned to me, called The Printed Square * Vintage Handkerchief Patterns for Fashion and Design * by Nicky Albrechtsen, Published by Harper Collins, 2012.

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This is the kind of book that I want two copies of. One to keep as a book, and the other to tear the pages out of so I can frame my favorites and then play with them in a variety of arrangements. It’s divided into chapters with the handkerchiefs grouped by color — red, orange, yellow, green, azure, blue, pink, purple, beige, brown, black and white. Which makes me think, this book would be fun published as a folio so you could create your own sets. They could as easily be divided into floral, geometric, Oriental, Western, or by decades — 20’s, 30’s, 40’s or 50’s. So if you get this book, buy two, and make one into a folio!

And now, confession time. Though I didn’t read this month, I did watch plenty of Netflix. But before you get all up in my grill about brain-rot, remember that when I watch TV I can also make pom poms, carve wood blocks, ink altered magazine pages, Kantha stitch quilts, and paint my boots. All of which I have done. This month. Which brings me to my tangential inspirational favorites….

Here are 2 Netflix series I enjoyed in April, the best bon bons to eat while watching them, and the “collections” of vintage handkerchief patterns I mentally put together for each of the series’ heroines.

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Series #1: “The Paradise” is a BBC costume drama loosely based on the Emile Zola novel, The Ladies’ Paradise. Denise Lovette is hired as a shop girl in the women’s department of The Paradise department store. She is a natural talent with lightning quick inspiration, obvious intelligence, a kind heart, and a working class background which means she starts at the bottom. Luckily John Moray, the owner of The Paradise, sees Denise’s true genius.

A cup of English Breakfast black tea with cream and honey, and some Turkish Delight are my bon bons of choice with this series. (Watch the powdered sugar if you are making pom poms!)

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My Printed Square Collection for Denise Lovette…”Get Lost in Paradise!”

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Series #2: “Hit & Miss” stars Chloe Sevigny who plays Mia, a transexual contract killer who finds out she has an ll year old son by her former girlfriend Wendy. Wendy has died leaving their son Ryan, as well as 3 other children in need of a parent though none of the kids is too sure about having a dad for a mom. Mia has almost saved enough money from her contract killings for her final transition operation, but now the kids are being threatened with eviction, and a really attractive man at the pub has just asked her out.

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I hate when that happens. But when it does, I have some really strong coffee with cream, and Dark Roca with my Netflix marathon.

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My Printed Square Collection for Mia…”Fire Away!”

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We’ll see if there’s more time in my schedule for books next month when I don’t have any looming deadlines. Best guess right now? That’s a definite MAY-be.

We Ink it Up & Pull it Off…

By | 2D & 3D, Exhibitions

Our background prints had two orbits of the sun to dry, so first thing this Monday morning, Terry, Marilyn, Shirley — my mom, and I were back at Wingtip Press to ink up our second blocks and pull our final prints.

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Terry would have to do the math to tell you the number of variables we had with 4 artists, 10 blocks (I had 4 not 2), 5 colors, and any number of fractions of inches of difference between river connections twixt the blocks.

But, even I can tell you this…registration is very tricky!

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Each of our prints is slightly different, but each is also beautiful in its own way.

Here you can see the variation between two of them:

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and…

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I even think the blocks themselves are beautiful after we’ve pulled the prints:

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Now all that remains to be done is to select the print we will show in the TVAA exhibition of collaborative works which will be hung in the offices of Boise State Public Radio.

That exhibition will be called “Four Eyes: An Optical Collusion” and opens June 6, 2014, so go ahead and mark your calendar.

In ink.

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Laying the Groundwork

By | 2D & 3D, Ordinary Days

Dang. I was really hoping to have a nice tidy post with a whole “start to finish” story laid out for you about the wood cut collaborative print I’m working on. But things are never tidy that way are they?

And there’s the rub.

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Well, actually there’s the rubbing of our four blocks after we carved them, and before we printed them. My feathers are at the top.

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Today we met at Wingtip Press and set up to begin printing the background layer of our prints.

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Luckily Terry Burkes is one of the artists collaborating on this project and she is good with numbers and geometry and quadratic equations and how long it takes to orbit the Earth, and other important things you need to know when you are printing more than one color with more than one block and making more than one print. If you know what I mean. (And good on you if you do, because I have no idea what I’m talking about.)

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We made 9 prints with our background colors of Crimson and Yellow Ochre. You can see the blocks above which are inked and ready for the paper to be placed, pressed, and the print pulled.

Next week we’ll be back in the studio doing the second layer, with the detailed images in the rubbing above, using darker cool colors. They are going to be beautiful — and in this case, I know exactly what I’m talking about.

Confluence

By | Inspired By

I’ve been working on a woodcut for a collaborative print which I’ll be producing with three other artists at Wingtip Press. Our piece features a bird’s eye view of the Boise River which runs through each of our very differently patterned blocks and ties the four pieces together. Each of us chose a theme appropriate to the river — cottonwood fluff, a nest of goose eggs in the tall grass, trees along the river’s bank, and my block which has an overall pattern of feathers.

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The process of creating the block has been really satisfying as I had forgotten how much fun it is to carve one, and then be able to make multiple images. I literally had not carved a block since I was 9 years old!

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While all of this was going on, I got together with a new friend I met a year ago but had not been able to reconnect with until now, and who I’m sure I’ll be sharing more information about in future posts — Betsy Balch. Betsy designs scarves which she produces and sells, and I have one of her beautiful cashmere “bandana” designs (which is frankly awesome with my painted cowgirl boots!).

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Betsy loaned me one of her favorite inspiration books (which I will also be covering in a future post) called The Printed Square which is a picture book of vintage handkerchiefs like this one:

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Now, I don’t know about you, but my mind can’t help but make one of those “SET” combinations I’m so fond of out of all of these things. And then, throw in the Boise river too, and what have we got? We’ve got confluence!

Confluence: the coming together of 2 or more streams, people, or things; their place of junction; assemblage.

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I LOVE this kind of thing! Birds of a feather coming together my peeps. Birds of a feather!

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