Saturday 2 February 2013

Visage book

A couple of days ago I signed up to do a class at the 2013 Textile and Art Academy event in Brisbane. I've long admired the superb felting of textile artist Catherine O'Leary so when I saw she was offering a long and indulgent 5 days of tuition I succumbed to the temptation and signed up. She taught at the same event in 2011 but it coincided with when I recovering from surgery so I couldn't go. At that time the convener of the event, Lena Tisdall, had also been calling for volunteers to join an altered book project which she called Project 22. I joined up along with 21 others. We were allowed a very generous 20 months to create the books which Lena plans to display at the next event coming up at the end of June this year.

Yesterday I got out the book Lena had sent to each of the players. Fortunately she had given very open guidelines that we could choose whatever appealed as a theme for the book. The book for altering was called "Pictorial History of the Brisbane River" and had some lovely black and white photos from over a hundred year period but a book based on that theme had no interest to I dismantled the book by cutting off the spine and glueing groups of 3 pages together to give a nice firm surface to work on. The book is quite small, the pages are 17.5 x 24.5cm

The cover of my altered book - VISAGE

I choose the theme "Visage" for the book ("Facebook" being already taken!)

Today I made a cover and 2 pages for the book. I used an image of the same face cropped to various different sizes and printed them in grayscale through the inkjet printer then over painted them with colour, stencilled, stitched and appliqued in various ways. My plan is to do 12 -20 images of faces in this way.

Monday 28 January 2013

"Ava" fully framed

Today the work  "Ava wears a Gorgeous Yoke" was finished and mounted in this elaborate backframe. The actual painting on the inner canvas is 40 x 130cm so its one of the largest images I've done. The scale I can work at is limited by the practicality of getting the canvas under the sewing machine arm for embroidery.

The inner edge of the frame is stencilled with pale blue triangles.

Heres a close up picture showing the stitching and embellishment on the lower part of the figure.

I'm going to enter this work for the Muswellbrook Art Prize. It is a major biennial show with a $20,000 first prize. Its also juried so I have to submit the image to the initial selection process first! I put in a work a couple of years ago that was not selected (Rodney got in) but that same work later won first prize in a section of our local art show so I don't think it was too lousy!

Wish me luck!

Sunday 27 January 2013

A thread that runs through

A thread that runs through, day 1
"Ava" is finished and Rodney built the complex frame that I want to mount the work on. When that is complete I'll show the finished item in a future blog.

While he was building the frame I started blocking in a new work on a piece of canvas. The photo above shows what I'd completed after a few hours.

Three days ago I was surfing around internet sites looking at what some other favourite mixed media artists are blogging and doing. I came across a "call for art" from well known USA artist Lesley Riley. She is proposing to publish a book based on pictures that were inspired by quotes. So thinking this was great idea and that I'd like to have a go at contributing I emailed Lesley and got a couple of quotes. She sent me these -

"The painting is like a thread that runs through all the reasons for all the other things that makes ones life" Georgia O'Keeffe

"Beauty is the sense of life and the awe one has in its presence" Willa Cather

The work that was started today will be based on the first quote by Georgia O'Keeffe (strangely enough even though I've been to Santa Fe in New Mexico, USA, 3 times I've never been to O'Keeffes art museum....??!!)

My concept is to have the central floating figure drawing down threads from above which run through her hands and drape down around her body to start weaving the garment she wears and that the ends of the garment trail off from her feet and drift off the bottom of the canvas.....