Thursday, December 5, 2013

Earth Child

I completed my first book yesterday for The Thread That Weaves.  What you see above is the complete innards of the book, and beginning just below, each page from outside front to back.  The last photo is a closeup of the little book stitched inside.

I decided to call the book Earth Child because I used a few lines of text from an old children's book called The Children's Country, and earth-child is referred to throughout that book.  But really my book is devoted to wabi-sabi, an aesthetic centered on the acceptance of transience and imperfection.  Wikipedia says this about wabi-sabi:  "Wabi now connotes rustic simplicity, freshness or quietness, and can be applied to both natural and human-made objects, or understated elegance. It can also refer to quirks and anomalies arising from the process of construction, which add uniqueness and elegance to the object. Sabi is beauty or serenity that comes with age, when the life of the object and its impermanence are evidenced in its patina and wear, or in any visible repairs."

The pages themselves were made by building collages on gessoed fabric.  I used vintage linen torn into approximately 5-1/2 inch squares.  I used bits of old things throughout ~ old book text, eco dyed fabric scraps, an old copper amulet, lace, handmade and printed paper, postage stamps.

The three inner pages actually open up or to the side, and each face underneath has a scrap of paper and another line or two of text from The Children's Country.

I used a heavy Gutermann copper sewing thread to hand stitch throughout.  There is a swirly line of stitching on the book itself, underneath the pages, that runs from left to right.  That line represents the thread that weaves throughout much of my life and my art, the wabi-sabi thread in this case.

After creating the collages and gluing them down with matte medium, I aged the pages with Neocolor II crayons and a bit of moisture.  The gesso I'd used on the pages had a lot of tooth in it, so the crayons picked up on the grits now on the fabric...so they kind of look like stucco surfaces.

I used hand torn pieces of old text and a couple other things for the little book.  The front side of each page has a smaller bit glued onto it.  No rhyme or reason, just bits and pieces.  Like the rest of the book.

18 comments:

marilyn stephens said...

Dear Connie, I have so enjoyed read this blog post...beautiful work ....right up my street.
I'm still preparing paper lol
So happy for you xx love Marilyn xx

rivergardenstudio said...

Oh Connie, I am so moved by your book and your words describing it, especially the earth-child that grows into a woman.
"Earth Child" is a work of art that is so touching and true to my heart.
roxanne

The Idaho Beauty said...

It certainly does looked aged - and it cries out to be touched. Complex yet approachable. Lovely...

DAWN said...

Oh my gosh Connie! this is fantastic! what a labor of love. I just want to touch it! You must be very happy with the outcome.
~Dawn

Trece said...

Intriguing. I've been hearing more and more about wabi-sabi.

Leslie said...

Ack! This is gorgeous! Love how it looks old and weathered by time. Very cool to gaze at cause I keep seeing new details. Must try something like this.

Sandy said...

WOW! What an interesting and complex book.

Irene said...

This is beautiful, Connie, and makes me wonder how in the world you did that. What imagination you must have and what freedom to create. I am so happy for you that you are capable of this. And envious a little bit too, yes.

Meg Fowler said...

A deliciously fabulous book, Connie. Out of all the beautiful things you have been creating lately, this has to be my favorite. I love everything about it!

Maggi said...

I just love this book.

Jeannie said...

Connie, Earth Child is fabulous!!! I wish I could hold it and look at each page and its details. It truly is a beautiful work of art.

Alice said...

VERY handsome book. I love the big book/little book idea.

Karen Isaacson said...

It's exquisite! a person could get lost in there!

Paper Chipmunk (aka Ellen) said...

I thought I'd commented on this earlier, but I guess not… Really lovely, Connie. The pictures make you want to reach out and touch it.

john said...

Fantastic! Just fantastic!

Cindy Swainson said...

Connie, I love what you have done with this process. You inspire me to keep going. There is so much to absorb with your book - such a rich experience!

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Erika Nittel-Traser said...

I love to see your wonderful art with
painting, sewing and colors.
So glad to find you.
Erika