Friday, June 28, 2013

Summer Road Trip 2013 and Photo Scavenger Hunt

My husband and I have embarked on a summer road trip. I will try to blog each day or two so that I can keep up with the photos.
Our first stop is Nashville, Tennessee. We came to visit our son and his fiance and to attend "Summer Celebration" at Lipscomb University. I packed stuff to read and my art travel kit to have something to do in the car. The scenery is always so interesting, all I did was look out the window and take photos for 8 hours each day!

I've been able to locate three items on the Summer Photo Scavenger Hunt list. Here they are:

#8 Tower
These photos were taken while driving through Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Virginia and Tennessee. They are water towers, what I am guessing are radio and cell phone towers and maybe something else in addition to this.

#16 Windmill

#20 Dinosaur

It always amazes me how once we leave the metropolitan area of NY, NJ and CT, the scenery changes from buildings, roads and traffic to farms, mountains and open sky! I would so much rather spend my days looking at these views than those of the cities that surround me!

There were a few hours when we drove through down pouring rain. Being able to see the storm clouds in the sky was amazing!

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Summer of Color Week 3

This week's colors are lime green and purple. Looking around my studio I spied several small journals I had begun to assemble but never finished. In that pile was one with a cover perfect for this challenge. Even the ribbons I had previously chosen to bind it are lime green and purple! 

Lavender is in full bloom in my garden right now. Knowing these flowers would fit the challenge, though the stem and leaves don't, I looked around for foliage in the lime green color range. Lemon balm seemed to fit.

So here is my seven hole pamphlet stitch journal and bouquet of lavender and lemon balm.  I don't like the lighting in these photos and will try to photograph them again tomorrow. I decided to upload these anyway, in the event that tomorrow's light isn't any better!

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Summer of Color - Week 2

This week the colors to work with are orange and hot pink. I occasionally use these colors in my artwork, and always include them in my flower gardens. The colors attract butterflies and hummingbirds and work so nicely with green foliage.

I decided to look through my garden and decorating magazines for photos of flowers and home furnishings in these colors. They were quite easy to find, and often paired together. Working with magazine pages only, I created these three collages.

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Speaking of Circles - Summer of Color and Etsy Craft Party

Being involved with several things at once right now, I decided to combine this week's Summer of Color Challenge with the demo sheets I needed to create for the upcoming Etsy World Craft Party workshops I'll be facilitating. Our theme for the party is "People Make the World Go Round". The facilitators are all working with the theme of circles or spheres. One of my workshops will be "Creating Decorative Papers using Everyday Objects". Employing printing, stamping, stenciling and masking, all with circle shapes, I created these papers.

Next, I cut and tore them into smaller pieces and made these three collages.

Each week participants of the Summer of Color Challenge vote on the color combination they like best. The combo with the most votes wins. I voted for tangerine and watermelon for next week - hope it's the winner!

Nature Printing with Steam


Eco-printing, or eco-bundling, the terms for India Flint's dyeing technique, is gaining in popularity. I prefer to call this method "nature printing with steam", for to me it explains the process best. I wrote up a tutorial describing the basic steps of the process as I have been doing it for the blog, 12 Months in View. You can find that tutorial by clicking HERE.

Next I want to experiment with this process to print on watercolor paper (and then on my handmade papers, which would bring this project full circle) without bundling. I've seen some examples of this on the web and the results are cool!

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Garden Sage - Flower Drawing 12

Salvia officinalis - Garden Sage

The original drawing:

Transferred to another sheet of paper and colored with watercolor pencils:

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Photography Scavenger Hunt - Items 10 and 13

Here are my first two Photography Scavenger Hunt photos of the summer:

Item #10 - An Outdoor Bench

This bench is in a small herb garden planted outside of Wisteria Studios, my papermaking shop.

Item #13 - A Fence

Yes, this is really a photo about a gate and a brick entryway, but there is a fence on both sides, so it counts.

Okay, I know, that was easy. Two photos taken in my backyard. To get as many items on the list as possible I will need to get out into the neighborhood and beyond. Looking forward to all I'll get to discover!

Exciting Times

There has been so much going on lately, mostly wonderful! I have been working on my flower drawings, but have not had a chance to post the last few. I am working on articles and a tutorial for 12 Months in View and am going to be offering two workshops at Etsy's World Craft Party 2013 at the Arcade in Bridgeport, CT. That takes place on Thursday, June 20th. I was also asked today if I would be interested in teaching papermaking workshops through an organization I have been involved with. You know I said yes!

I've also signed up for two summer blog challenges. One is a photography scavenger hunt and the other is a Summer of Color.

Plus I have been busy with outdoor adventures and have been posting that news on my nature/horticulture blog.

I will be getting this blog updated with all of this as soon as I am able.

Friday, June 7, 2013

Papermaking with Kids - Great Sesame Street Video

I came across this video this morning. It is so much fun! Looks like it was filmed at Dieu Donne in New York City. I think one of the instructors is Helen Hiebert. It is wonderful to see the kids making paper a) the real, messy, wet way and b) from old cotton clothing. Enjoy!

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Rhododendron Flowers Eco-Print

I unwrapped the bundles this morning to see the results of the steam printing. Here is how they turned out. When they are dry, I will iron them and lay them side by side for comparison of the different mordants.

The most spectacular eco-print came from magenta rhododendron flowers that had recently fallen from the shrub. This was wrapped in un-mordanted cotton, mulberry paper and silk and steamed in a stainless steel pot.

Isn't that incredible?? the pieces are air drying now. I need to rinse and gently wash them to see if the color is fast. If it is, I've got to dye a t-shirt with these flowers before they dry up!!

Mary Hark Papermaking Video

Looking for recent information about one of my favorite papermaking artists, Mary Hark, I found this video. Here she is demonstrating how to make paper to Mississippi State students. I really like the way she describes the importance of practicing and perfecting your craft.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

First Eco-Bundling Batch of 2013

Today I cleaned the outdoor papermaking/natural dye work area. I then cut fabric, got the hot plates and pots out, cut some flowers and wrapped some bundles. For most of what I gathered, I am trying four different variables. I want to compare the effects of the same flower on alum mordanted, copper mordanted and unmordanted cotton. I also want to see if steaming a non mordanted bundle in the presence of copper (a colander in this case) will have any effect.


While the bundles were steaming, I applied a first layer of latex varnish to some mold and deckle frames my husband made. I want to teach papermaking workshops, and need them in order to do that.

I left the bundles to sit in the pots to cool and set overnight. I will open them tomorrow morning and see if any magic happened! Stay tuned...

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Rhododendron and Iris - Drawings 10 and 11

Finally warm enough temperatures to sit outside and draw, I set up Friday morning to draw the spectacular bearded irises which are in bloom.

 When I set up at 9 a.m., the area was in the shade. I was only able to sketch for 20 minutes before the sunlight began to shine on the white paper and reflect into my eyes.I think I captured the essence of these flowers and am happy with the sketch.

I decided to move over to the rhododendrons which were in full bloom and in the shade. There I was able to sketch for a half hour before the sun began to shine on my paper.

Wish I had more time to work on this to add the flowers on either side of this one.

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