Creativity: Escape XVI

Escape43

This week, I bring a few more pages from my altered book, “Escape”, with it’s theme of creativity – and the freedom and joy that go with it. This page was covered in pink and yellow acrylic paint, with a touch of ‘Kirkwood’ over the top, picked up from the opposite page. When something like that happens, you can either think “Disaster!”, and try to fix it, or “Serendipity!”, and go along with it – I generally choose to go with it, as I like to have some randomness and surprises popping up as I work.  Coloured pencil and stickers add a bit more colour, while the text is a ‘note to self’.Escape44

I took  photos of a back lane in Aberdeen Washington some years ago – I like the balance of the regular shapes of buildings and power lines and the down-at-heel look of the backs of buildings. The page on the left has a copy of a drawing I did from one of the photos, and opposite that is a print, from a carved stamp, of the same scene. Being the last page of a chapter, there was very little text, so I printed directly on the page for once.

While I was editing the pics of pages ready to post, I had a play around with some of the images. Here is the Aberdeen alley-way drawing again. In the first image, I have increased the saturation so that what colour there is is much stronger – I then inverted the colour for the second version – day and night, perhaps! I haven’t used any copies like this in a book, or not yet, anyway…It would will be fun to make a series of variations like this on a set of images, and make or alter a book to hold them.

Weekly Photography Challenge: Fresh

We woke up this morning to the sound of rain, and the calling of rain frogs (Litoria ewingii) – fresh sounds indeed.

Fresh being the theme for this week’s photography challenge, I popped outside with the camera in search of fresh images (the welcome autumnal shower was already over).

Leaves are beginning to turn, and insects  are active in the warm sunshine. The toy hermit crab (leftover from Christmas) has been given a fresh new look by a busy spider. Autumn is my favourite time of year, a relief after a hot dry summer. We still haven’t had much rain, but the mornings are getting later,cooler and crisper, while the afternoons, on a good day, are warm and still. With luck, some time in the next few weeks, the Autumn Break will come, bringing real, soaking, refreshing rain…

Weekly Photography Challenge: Creative Walls

july-aug 2011 010 (Large)

I’ve had a busy week, with a four-day workshop, learning some different book-bindings at Grampians Texture, with book artist Adele  Outteridge- besides which my computer has been recalcitrant, refusing to do what I asked of it. (I think it’s feeling better now…) So I’m compressing a week’s worth of posts into one. july-aug 2011 013 (Large)

Some years ago, I had gradually covered much of a wall of my workroom with various cuttings, clippings and posters, as well as the odd feather and leaf. I would now call it an “inspiration wall”, but I hadn’t heard the term at the time. One day, I took it all down, possibly to repaint – I don’t remember – but I then used all the bits and pieces to make several framed collages, of which these are two. They all have touches of red in them, which helps to unify the disparate elements. The second one has a poem I wrote, typed up on the electric typewriter we used to have…

“Peace!” is my battlecry,
With love I taunt my enemies,
And when they writhe in travail
on the floor
I ache with empathy.

There is also a clipping from a magazine explaining what empathy actually means and a quote from Carl Jung -“As far as we can discern, the sole purpose of human existence is to kindle a light in the darkness of mere being.”

Any collection of clippings and mementos could be treated the same way, framed and hung on a wall to be enjoyed, rather than hidden in a drawer.Bainbridge Is

This last piece was originally installed on the door of our fridge. The photo in the middle reminded me of the one on the right, which I hunted out in my old school mag…which reminded me of the boy next to me (we are out-lined in red) in that photo of the editorial committee, Castlemaine High School 1972…and the poem I wrote when I heard that he had died rather young…which I wrote, it happened, around the time that Charles Peterson photographed a band from Olympia, Washington, on Bainbridge Island. Then I wrote another poem about these coincidences, and stuck them all on the fridge, linked together with red thread, and there they stayed, and yellowed, until I took them down because they were so tatty.

However, I didn’t throw it all away, but transferred it onto a piece of paper in a drawer; eventually, I made a background of tea-stained board, which I embellished with stamps of flowers and birds, echoing the meadow where the band were. I applied them with the tea-stain still damp, so that they blurred slightly for a pleasing aged look.I also added rust-stained paper rings (meant for reinforcing holes on paper) and a coloured image of a bird, similar in outline to the stamped ones, which rounded out the composition ready for framing. It’s one of my favourite things (of which there are many….)

Friday Poem: She Said

I wrote this while the poetry challenge was on a couple of weeks ago – I should have made a note of what poetic device I was aiming to use here, but I really like the little twist in the story.pod 2

Tell me, what are you thinking,
My honey? she said
What are you thinking?
She said.
Tell me dear, what is happening
there in your head?
honey, what are you thinking?
She said.
He turned to her slowly
and smiled with his eyes.
I know what you’re thinking.
She said.pod 1

I chose three macro shots of dried flower pods from my files, and edited them a bit for what I think is a poetic effect. There’s a twisted stemmed pod form a double poppy, and the other two are the back and face of a lotus pod, with the seeds peeping out of their niches.pod 3

Creativity: Escape XV

Escape40

Back with my altered book “Escape” this week…The left-hand page of this spread was roughly painted over with ‘dirty’ acrylic, giving uneven colour, and over top of that background I have doodled bright colours of  Peerless watercolours, trying out both the paints and a marvellously portable Aquash brush which has a reservoir of water in it’s handle. They are available online from the lovely Jane Davenport’s Institute of CuteEscape41

Both pages have  fragments of a photo from an Ararat Regional Art Gallery  show  – the artist had made a giant graffiti piece on the wall to complement his ceramics exhibition (hence the spray can). I put him in because I liked his work, but now I can’t remember his name…David something, I think –  should have included it somewhere! An old dictionary is good for cutting out definitions of words used on the page – or just for fun.Escape42

Another page on which I obscured the text with “Kirkwood” paint, leftover from painting our dining room (waste not, want not!) I left a few fragments of text, which gain fresh meaning for being redacted. The page is edged with scribbly layers of coloured pencil, framing the “notes to self”, written in fine Sharpie and my own evolving font.

Weekly Photography Challenge: Orange (I’m Glad)

 

I like orange a lot – especially teamed up with pink – so for this weeks Photography Challenge theme it’s more a matter of narrowing down the options than finding something to ‘fit’.

According to some experts, the colour orange symbolises (and promotes) joy. It is certainly a lively colour, and from the ‘hot’ end of the spectrum, it might be less welcome in summer than winter. I was a bit concerned about that when I painted our compact lounge room in a shade of orange somewhere between pumpkin and terracotta, but as it’s been that colour for several years and no one has complained, I guess it’s OK!

Here are five images of orangeness – a corner of our lounge, a paper lantern I made (with a candle glowing inside), a fabulous vintage demi-tasse coffee cup and saucer (I have three, each a different colour combo), a luscious orange nasturtium flower, and a painting I saw at the National Portrait Gallery in Canberra last weekend.  Unfortunately, the exhibition, “In The Flesh”, finished the following day, but you can view many of the images on the website. The huge painting (there’s a man partly in view for scale) is “Recruit (self portrait in the image of my son)”, by Michael Peck. Stunning! And orange.

Friday Poem: Autumn Haiku

When I mentioned to my daughter, as we walked home from the shops, that I had a Friday Poem post to attend to before the day was out, she said, “You should write one about Juniper”, and by the time we reached their house, I had this haiku -

Walking in sunshine
the pram full of groceries
Juni is sleeping

berries

The wonderfully bright berries grow alongside the walking track that leads from the nearby sports fields and shops to the house where Juniper, her Mum and Dad and the three cats live. By the time this publishes, I’ll be back in Victoria, looking forward to my next trip to Canberra…cat trio 1