Thursday, December 29, 2016


I'm kind of making up for lost time with my current collage output.  All I can say is, making these is addictive.  I'll be finished with my first Midori insert (16 folios, 32 spreads, 64 pages) in the next few days.

I'm thinking that after I use up the purchased inserts I already have, I'll likely make my own.  I've got so much paper...I've got a paper cutter...and everything else I need.

Not only has it been cold on the North Coast, but it's going to get colder still.  It may even snow down to sea level here next week!

Hard to believe 2016 is over.  Seems like it just began.  A year is hardly any time at all, anymore.

Possibly that fact is why I've been inspired to keep making art ~ collages at the moment.  Because as more time goes by, the less time there is left in my life in which to create.

Wishing you peace these last few days of 2016.    

Saturday, December 24, 2016

Use It or Lose It

Although I've been adding stuff to my collection of collage materials, I like that I've begun using things I've had for years that I haven't wanted to use previously.  Like, always saving the best for last.  The thing is, when I go, most if not all of what I've collected will end up in the landfill anyway.  So I might as well use it now, while I have the energy and inclination.  You know what they say, "Be good to yourself -- use your good china, wear the clothes you love the most," or something like that.  What am I saving this stuff for?  There's no one to inherit it.

A couple years ago when I began making mail art, my early love of postage stamps was rekindled.  So then I started collecting stamps, which I buy from a seller who comes to the local antique shows.  And then just putting them by country in clumps in plastic sleeves in a couple of binders.

I'm not a real stamp collector, I just like them, especially engraved stamps.  I decided recently to start using them in my collages, on mail art, wherever, instead of just collecting them to sit in binders.  At least that way I can see them and enjoy them.

Similarly with the old books I've collected.  I'm not really a collector of old books, I won't pay ridiculous prices for something just to have it, what I have isn't worth trying to sell and I don't want to anyway, so I may as well tear out pages or cut out illustrations to use in my art.  That's why I bought them in the first place, really.

And then there's cool scrapbook paper that I collected for bookmaking.  Some of this, now, is going into my collages.     

I've been using my collection of handmade fabrics in recent stitching projects.  Although I used the bulk of what I originally had in art quilts I made from 2008 to 2012, plus I sold quite a bit of it, I held back enough fabric that I really loved for future projects.  That's what I've been using for recent handstitched pieces.  And I still have enough to last me the rest of my life.

So...use it or lose it.

Hope you enjoy a peaceful holiday weekend.


Tuesday, December 20, 2016

New Collages

I've done little else but collage and read this past week.
I do want to start a stitched something, and will likely go through my fabrics in the next few days to see what grabs my imagination. 

Meanwhile, sifting and sorting through papers, book pages, magazine images, washi tape, stickers and whatever else I can find, is bringing me joy.  And putting disparate things together even more so.

This spread is about as holiday-ish as I'm likely to get.

Wishing you peace, joy and happiness for the holidays, and always.

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

New Things

Moonglow, 7.5 x 10.5 inches, handstitched, wholecloth ecodyed fabric

I'm on a bit of a creative roll, something that largely eluded me for much of 2016, despite the fact that I've slowly been producing a small body of handstitched works.

I've gotten enthused about a variety of things via Instagram, as I think I mentioned earlier.  It's being an telling journey, noticing who and what I'm newly or rebootedly interested in at the moment.

For instance, I'm following artists who are into paper goods and Japanese stationery, the world of Midori Travel Notebooks, modern calligraphy aka brush lettering, new ways with mail addition to painters, photographers, handstitchers, ceramicists.

The Midori Travel Notebook (MTN) subculture has really spoken to me.  I don't travel, and I no longer keep or use a calendar-type journal, but I love the format of the regular sized MTN, with inserts (the actual booklets you write in that are attached to the cover of the notebook and can be replaced when they're full) that are 4.25 x 8.25 inches.  And I love and always prefer grid paper, so I got grid paper inserts to work with.

And thus far I'm using mine as an art journal, as it turns out.  Committed to using stuff I've been collecting ~ washi tape, rubber stamps, postage stamps, old paper, illustrations from childrens' books.  There's something about the format that really works for me.

Brush lettering has really captured my imagination as well.  I've got out all my brush pens and italic-nibbed pens, and am thinking seriously about getting some lettering worksheets online.  It's all a matter of practice.  Before I invest, though, I'm considering whether this might just be another passing fancy (as genealogy appears to have been), or whether I'll actually work at it to become skillful. 

The stitched piece at top, Moonglow, is the latest in my SunMoonStars series.  This is a small piece (7.5 x 10.5 inches) of wholecloth ecodyed fabric.  Interestingly, it was more challenging than the other pieces in the series.  And now I'm ready to work with some color again.

I hope you're having a good lead-up to the holidays.  It's all being rather mellow for me; it usually is.

Be well.

Friday, December 2, 2016

Still Shining

Finished my latest SunMoonStars piece yesterday.  I'm calling it Still Shining, in honor of the fact that regardless of what happens in the world here and abroad, the sun will still be shining somewhere everyday.

This piece is 12 x 13 inches.  All fabrics were hand dyed.  I tried seeding for the first time, in the sun and its rays -- a ton of tiny stitches.  Went more quickly than I'd imagined, though.

I'm enjoying my days stitching and reading mostly, and spending some amount of time daily on Instagram, which I'm loving.  Many new-to-me artists, lots of inspiration.  The bonus is that the images, viewed on either of my Android devices, are to-die-for.  A completely different experience from seeing them on computer. 

Have a good weekend.  Enjoy the holiday season however you can.