Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Give Your Friend A Hand Swap

Anna is hosting our "Give Your Friend a Hand" swap.  The idea is to trace one of your hands and decorate it however you like.  I painted my hands pink and used a floral stencil to create this henna-like pattern.  I decided to include a wrist so that I could place a bracelet on each hand.  It just wouldn't be me without the bling, right?  I made a total of 10 hands.  All of us will send our hands to Anna and she will distribute one hand from every player to each participant, binding them at the base of each hand.  I've had a sneak peek at some of the other hands made for this swap and now I can't wait to get my complete set!

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Themeless in Honolulu

A few weeks ago, I was invited to join a very distinguished and elite group of artists in a small altered book round robin.  Tickled, I simply could not pass up the opportunity to be able to share art with these talented ladies!
I didn't have much time to prepare a book for the round, so I did something I've never done before.  Like some of the other participants, I decided NOT to have a theme for my book.  Why not give these artists absolute freedom to create their art in my book?  The more I thought about this idea, the more I liked it.
Of course, not having a theme made it difficult for me to figure out how to start my book...I have to say that my inspiration came from a few different sources.  Earlier this month, a dear friend from Palm Springs showed me an altered lace book that was just so delicious!  Second, I will soon be working on a book for my Hawaii AB RR whose theme is "Diamonds & Rust."  I had already decided that I would do a spread inspired by "Leather & Lace" for that book.  Both are song titles, but I really liked the juxtaposition between the refined versus the crude.
Now, I don't usually work with fabric.  It's just not me.  But I gradually brought out the scraps of fabric, ribbon and trim that I have stashed away and began to pull the textures and colors that I was drawn to.  It soon became apparent that I was channeling a very vintage, victorian piece (also not me).  I assembled the different pieces, added a little touch of gold, a little bit of hardware and topped it off with some bling and this is what I came up with! 

Friday, September 14, 2012

Wine, Women & Song Chunkies

I almost forgot to post my chunky pages for this month!  Our theme was "Wine, Women & Song" and everyone had fun creating their pages.  I was inspired by a saying that I found on an old hankie that read "Who does not love wine, women and song, remains a fool his whole life long!" 
I went with a "retro" feel taking this image of a 1950's housewife who clearly enjoys her wine.  I ran the image off onto a transparency and sandwiched it between two sheets of contact paper.  I cut out the quote and also sandwiched it between the contact paper.  It's hard to see in these photos, but I added color to her dress by sprinkling some colored glitter to the one side of the contact paper before sealing. 

Sunday, September 9, 2012

The Girl With Kaleidoscope Eyes

I just loved Cindy's theme for this continued Dark Side round robin!  Lyrica Obscura.  So many possibilities...in the end I went with the Beatles' "Lucy in the Sky With Diamonds" because of the rich visuals the song lyrics create.
Cellophane flowers of yellow and green
Towering over your head
Look for the girl with the sun in her eyes
Cindy's book marks the end of the Dark Side AB RR.  I am excited that my Seven Deadly Sins book will be coming home to me soon, but sad to see this round come to a close.  I was thrilled when I received an invitation to join another small group of artists in a new AB RR!  Now off to find another book to alter...

Gathering with friends

I had a wonderful opportunity to get together with not one, but two of my Sketchbook Sisters last Sunday!  I was vacationing in Los Angeles and made arrangements to spend a day at the flea market with Bea (left) and Sox (middle).  Bea met me at my girlfriend Michelle's house and we drove to the Pasadena City College Flea Market where we met up with Sox who made the 2-hour drive from her new home in Palm Springs.
We had fun roaming the aisles and aisles of vendors who were selling anything and everything you can imagine.  Sox scored on a wooden cigar box and a few pairs of some vintage leather gloves.  Bea was on the lookout for ephemera--vintage postcards--to use in her fabulous mail art.  I found a few small stray/broken jewelry pieces to use in a few altered book spreads I have coming up.  Oh, and I almost forgot--I picked up an old Reynolds trombone for my husband.  Thankfully, it came with a hard carrying case, but once I made that purchase, I had reached my two-piece luggage limit for my flight home!
After leaving the flea market, we dropped by a cute little art/craft shop called Zinnia.  So many adorable things in that store!  How I wish we had a store like Zinnia here in Hawaii!  We capped off our day together with a late lunch at a trendy eatery called Lemonade.  It gave us a chance to talk and share our current projects.  Sox brought her gorgeous lace book to show us.  Bea and I drooled at each and every page.  Teri (also from our Sketchbook group) was part of that Lace Book round robin.  Beautiful work!  Makes me wish I could sew...
All of us had a wonderful day together and look forward to the next time we can meet up again!

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Secrets & Conspiracies

The inspiration for my spread in Dorie's "Secrets & Conspiracies" came from a recent visit to the Museum of Death in Hollywood, California.  It's not a museum for the faint of heart.  There are grisly, gruesome photos of murders, fatal accidents and executions.  I found it absolutely fascinating!
Caution:  Do not read this next paragraph if you are easily offended. 
My favorite room was the "Serial Killer Archives."  In this room was a collection of letters and artwork of some of history's most notorious serial killers.  Again, it was so fascinating to me how these twisted minds could be so creative.  One serial killer crafted pop-up cards.  They were perverse, obscene and crudely constructed, but they were pop-ups nonetheless.  And you know how I am a fan of pop-ups!  The most intriguing piece however was a series of miniature jointed nude human figures--not more than an inch tall--engaging in various sexual positions.  Ingeniously powered by a "windmill" created from a single playing card, the figures actually move when you gently blow on the windmill.  The power source (windmill) and figures together fit into a plastic cassette tape case (remember those?)  Eight different cassettes were showcased here.  Fascinating.
The collection at the Museum of Death in Hollywood would not be complete without a section about the infamous "Black Dahlia" murder.  Elizabeth Short, aka The Black Dahlia, was brutally murdered and dismembered in Los Angeles in 1947.  Her murder has never been solved.  It was a sensational crime in its day--and even by today's standards.  I was compelled to do a spread on the Black Dahlia.
My spread resembles the desk of a weary detective mulling over the information gathered during the investigation.  Over the years, the pages have yellowed and the photos have faded.  Her image is so haunting.  It is hard to believe that her death remains unsolved to this day.