Friday, August 12, 2011

Practice FTB Journal #2

Over the 4th of July weekend (yes, well over a month ago!), I got a lot of creative things done. One thing not planned was setting up an Etsy shop...but I did! Currently, I have small blank notebook listed, but will add larger journals soon. I’ve been thinking about this step for years.

A lot of motivation was from my friend Lyn and the attitude of the online class, Full Tilt Boogie. There’s a “Just Do It” spirit that is so infectious from both Mary Ann Moss and her students. It’s very catching.

So, I was a bit behind in the class and felt like catching up. Not using the vintage photo album nor a vintage book, as instructed, I created several roadblocks. Deciding this was just a practice book, I went too far off-road, too, selecting a small, modern, falling apart, 50 cent mark-down square hardback book with a thick spine.

Original Book used

Inside book with text block removed



After cutting away the book block, I knew the cover needed help. When I tested a FedEx-type envelope I had already painted and it fit perfectly, I had a match. Not using my “good” Fabriano Artistico watercolor paper, I cut up some student grade paper in 11” x 15” tablet size. But folding folios with the grain, these papers were so thick and bulky I could only use two folios in each signature for a total of five. I wanted more papers and pockets but it would have been too thick. Adding any collage would have been unworkable. Didn’t have book cloth tape for the spine, so I used silver duck tape.

Note the wonky 1st signature (on left)

My troubles began with gluing in. I struggled with that hard and thick spine; it was impossible to either close the book or open it flat. Even pulling up the glued end papers didn’t help. If the spine had been thin or made of fabric, it probably would have laid down nicely and not pulled so much. Ah, well! Decided to do the Mary Ann Moss thing and go with the imperfections.

Now for the finishing step. Couldn’t use the button and ribbon closure but needed to keep this yawning journal cinched down when not in use. Auditioning a lot of hopefuls, I finally settled on this combination leather strap and turquoise doughnut.

You can learn from anything but especially from your mistakes. So, I learned a lot! Really love this class and fellow classmates—everyone is making such beautiful and unique journals.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Relaxin' in Rockport

After a stressful month of dealing with my Mom’s health problems, we got away for a few days of rest and relaxation at the coast. It’s not Hawaii (where I lived as a child), it’s not Ireland (which I dearly love), but Rockport is very nice. Even in August, it's 10 degrees cooler than our megacity.

We loved the place where we stayed, just a few steps from the water and a marina. Brown pelicans and seagulls live here, too.

At the Rockport Center for the Arts, we saw a new exhibit called “Standing Out” having pieces from five different artists. I loved the variety, the setting, the friendly people here. The building is on Aransas Bay.

Jamie Speck (below) has a lot of 3-D works on both wood and canvas. Her work really appealed to me.

Mary Downing enlarges vintage photos and postcards, prints them on canvas, and then paints chickens around the focal points. Very original and fun. “The Preacher and the Chicks” (below, left) made me laugh.

Speaking of unique, Ed Boyd’s medium is vinyl film—I can’t imagine how long it must take to cut and apply strips to create paintings on frames, surf boards, and boogie boards.

I was energized after seeing this exhibit—been too long since I’ve seen new art!

Monday, August 1, 2011

New Etsy Shop and Treasury Feature

Just last night I listed my very first items in my Etsy shop. Today, one of my notebooks is featured in a fall-themed Etsy Treasury. How cool is that?