Friday, March 18, 2011
Miscellaneous Catch Up
Here are some of the things I worked on this week. On Wednesday evening, I hosted the "Creative Playgroup" for women at the Mahopac Public Library. We made jewelry with shrink film (remember "Shrinky Dinks?"). Above are some of the earrings I made as samples. As you can probably tell, we used rubber stamps and "StazOn" inks, which are permanent even on plastic. The backgrounds were colored in with colored pencils, except for the black pair on the top. Last weekend I was afraid I wouldn't have enough materials for all the people who signed up (I actually had 17 people registered!) so I took a trip to Michael's craft store and got another package of the shrink film which had a variety of colors (10 sheets, 2 of each type for only $6!). The challenge with the black, bright white and almond types is that they're opaque, so you can't trace through it, and not a lot shows up on the black. You pretty much have to use paint pens or metallic inks. The black pair above was done with paint pens, but we had a lot of success with the metallic inks as well. The ladies had a lot of fun playing with all the materials and watching them shrink in the toaster oven. (Hmm, when am I going to get that Etsy shop open, anyway...?)And here is my weekly 8x10 study, the tenth one I've done (I think I'm behind one week). I got the inspiration for this while walking the dog with my daughter a few weeks ago. As you can see, it was still snowy, and we're walking past these tangled branches, when suddenly we notice a flash of blue. It wasn't just one Eastern Bluebird, there was a whole crowd of them! They looked so bright and beautiful sitting among the dull grays of the late winter landscape. Then in church that Sunday, the gospel was from Matthew, the part about the birds and flowers not worrying about food and clothing, and how God loves us more than these. So I decided to combine the two events into a weekly art piece. I photographed some bare branches in the snow, printed the photo with a laser printer, and transferred it to the fabric with CitraSolv. Then I added the bluebirds I cut from a piece of blue "papercloth" I made a while back. I stuck them on using gel medium and added a few stitches for details. Then I wrote part of the bible verse underneath with a calligraphy marker.And finally, a work in progress. I've been trying to really get going on a large piece I promised I'd make for a friend (it's actually one of my annual goals). I wanted to do this fantastic stand of orange antler coral we saw growing near Trunk Bay on St. John this summer, with all kinds of fish all around it. Of course, I didn't get a photo of it (I think we had used up all our underwater disposable camera shots by then) so I'm trying to just approximate it from memory, and with other images of antler coral I've seen. I have four shades of orange fabric with a small print on it. I drew a sketch of the coral and refined it until I was satisfied. Now I'm in the process of figuring out which branches should be which shade of orange, and how to put them all together! It's kind of like a huge puzzle and I can only work on it in short periods because it's a bit of a challenge. I hope I have more time to work on it today and over the weekend. Happy Friday, everyone!