Sunday, March 30, 2008

Star Washers

For the GPP challenge, "Cut it Out" -- please scroll down.
The mystery earring person has not yet come forward! Unless it was the thug who broke into my car last night and took my stereo faceplate.

Funny how stuff like this doesn't rattle me too much anymore. If someone's desperate enough to break into an 11 yr old dirty Corolla to get something that has a street value of about nothing, then I feel for them.

A N Y W A Y I finished this piece today, and scanned it and another piece (below it) to put up for sale on Etsy. I am pretty determined to give my Etsy shop a good go. I just don't think I've found my "groove" yet.

I did the above piece to go with an article I wrote for the now defunct Creative TECHniques magazine. In it, I recycled images from old collages. I really love this piece, especially the enlarged star washers. I've actually done a couple of these, but am saving one for David's next CD cover.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Mystery Earrings

This pair of vintage screw-back earrings showed up inside my back door yesterday -- I have no idea where they came from! At first I thought they were set there by a co-worker who knows that I collect vintage junk jewelry, but she denies any knowledge of the deed.

So who could it be? Will the mystery earring-person step forward? I'll keep you posted.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Flight Feathers

Finished this piece last night -- looks like I'm still in diagram transfer mode. I love the structure of bird wings, and this can be displayed either horizontally or vertically. For sale on Etsy.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

GPP Street Team Crusade #18-Cut it out!

I carved another stamp, this one of a photo of my daughter. Her features still need refinement, but I think I need a sharper blade before I attempt that! I used the photocopy filter in Photoshop to get the black and white image.

Instant Ancestors

Finished this collage this morning, I'd had the background laying around for ages. It's on a 4 x 4" stretched canvas, the background is black gesso, torn paper with the diagram transferred with gel medium. I love the looks on these faces. It is for sale on Etsy.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Green Stuff

I just got these two pieces back from Somerset, I had submitted them for the "Green" issue. The first is a "paper quilt" on canvas paper, and the second is a bird collaged and painted over a layered background. I also used the bird piece as a chunky book page. I have put them both up for sale on Etsy.

"Original French Version" - 4x4" mixed media collage on canvas paper
"The Mate of the Scarlet Tanager" - 4x4" mixed media collage on stretched canvas. SOLD

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Antique Shop Find

I found this little box of treasures at an antique shop near my home (A Street Antiques for you Lincolnites). I have never seen these before, they are little place signs for a dinner table. They are about the size of slide mounts. These are mirrored with small hand-painted flowers. There is a frosted or rough portion in the center of the slide in which to write guest's names in pencil. Two of the little pieces still had names penciled on them: "Butchie" and "Gretchen." I have no idea what I'm going to do with them, but I couldn't pass them up.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

GPP Street Team Crusade #18-Cut it out!

It's been a awhile since I've done a GPP Street Crusade, so I thought I'd jump in again. This month's challenge is to carve one's own stamps or stencils. I carved this one (the rose) today, trying to add a little texture/shading to it. I started out with a photo of a rose, then applied the photocopy filter in Photoshop to get a two-toned print. I transfered the print to the rubber with rubbing alcohol (I thought it was my acetone, but I was wrong--and it worked!). I was not very patient with my Speedball today.
The following are stamps I carved a few years ago when I was on a petroglyph kick. I especially love the "Bad Kitty" petroglyph. It looks like Serena on a bad hairball day.

David at St. Pat's Celebration

We went to the annual St. Patrick's day celebration at St. Patrick's church in Lincoln yesterday. David and Rand played at four. It was the usual good time - corned beef and cabbage, ham, jello and macaroni salad and lots of kids. I'm not a member of this community, but I love going there every year. Reminds me of a small town church get-together, which it is when you get right down to it.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Vintage Images

I uploaded a bunch of vintage images to share for use in your artwork, at my Flickr account. I scanned these at 300 dpi.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Rollins "Provoked"

Wednesday night we went to hear Henry Rollins perform spoken word on his "Provoked" tour. And did he deliver. Three hours of non-stop stories with an edge, and a message.

I actually met Rollins a couple of times in Minneapolis in the late 80s/early 90s-I was married to his guitarist's brother. The couple times the band came through town I got to go backstage, out to "Perkins", or behind the scenes at Lollapalooza to visit. (I'm sure he wouldn't remember me.) I remember him as being somewhat quiet when he was offstage, which is hard to believe if you see him perform.

I can't summarize the content of the show, there's just too much of it. He talks about his travels, his relationships with other bands and musicians, politics, and more. One story that stood out to me was the story of being in Islamabad when Bhuto was assassinated. Henry, when he has some time "off," will hop on a plane and go just about anywhere - especially those places to where he's been told not to go - and meet locals.

Now I could sit here and try to write the "review" that you'd see in the paper, with the punk and historical allusions to his career, but I can't do that. I don't know enough about it to talk about it. What I do know is that the Henry Rollins I watched perform in the late 80s/early 90s has evolved from -- as he said in his opening -- thinking in terms of "people suck." Now he's sharing stories of people whom he finds amazing: people he's met in his travels, on tour, and in the industry. And he's sharing these stories with a profound humility, taking jabs at himself more often than he jabs at others.

Another interesting part of the show was the audience -- my boyfriend and I are about Henry's age -- mid-late forties, and we sat at a table (this was a dinner theater) with two college sophomores. Girls my daugher's age! They LOVE Henry, think he's "hysterical." (I remember being backstage at Lalapalooza circa 1990, when that daughter was toddling around and made Henry smile-ever so briefly.)

If Rollins is a voice for my generation, I'm proud of that. Welcome to middle-age. It does get better.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

The Paper Quilt-Pink Roses

I made this paper quilt to enter into the True Colors challenge from Cloth Paper Scissors. Of course, I am still knee-deep in pink doo-doo. I used Beryl Taylor's fabric paper method, as outlined in the premiere issue of CPS. I didn't do her method "by the book," however, as I didn't layer quite as much because I wanted the color to do the screaming :).

I used many different materials in this, which made it a lot of fun. For materials, I used muslin, plain paper, tissue paper, old book paper, and paper towels. For color I used rubber stamp inks (the center panel), Procion dye (hot pink, orange and red), acrylic paint, Portfolio water soluble oil pastels, Krylon gold leaf pen, and probably something else that I can't remember right now...oh yeah, gold webbing spray (the paper towels, which are the corner pieces).

For the roses, I found a photograph of a rose that I liked and in Photoshop applied the "photocopy" filter until it was basically two-toned black and white. I re-sized it, and printed several copies. I made a template by using the shapes of the petals, cutting smaller shapes each piece I cut. I then used these four pieces as templates, and cut them out of the fabric paper, and gluing them at the center in layers.

I hand-dyed the rick-rack with the same Procion dye colors I used on the paper towels and roses. It was vintage rick-rack, thankfully, and was 100% cotten. I tried to dye some "nylon" rick-rack (new) and it was pathetic. I wonder if cotton rick-rack is even made anymore...

On a completely different note, David and I are going to see Henry Rollins do a spoken word show tonight here in Lincoln. Last year we were lucky enough to catch his show with his old band in Denver. More after the show.

('re thinking, 'how does someone who makes pink quilts get into Henry Rollins?')

Monday, March 10, 2008

Another Crow

Just sold one of the bird collages on Etsy! Here's another one, this time 4 x 4". Stamps by Green Pepper Press.

Saturday, March 08, 2008

Anatomy Guy

I am on another medical illustration kick I think.

Scrabble Tile Charms

I am on some kind of charm-making streak. I love these little things -- they're now for sale on Etsy...all of them are made with mini-prints of some of my original collages.

Project Runway

Well, my guy Christian won, but I have to admit I'm a little sad that this season of Project Runway is over...BUT, I found another runway show on the Bravo Web site....take a look...

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Blackbird 2-For Sale on Etsy

Another blackbird collage for sale on Etsy. Stamps by Michelle Ward of

I think I am going to challenge myself to do a "series" of collage in this style. This is the closest thing I have to a "look" as an artist. Plus I think it's good to work with limitations. There's an I-Ching hexagram called "Freedom within Limitations," I believe. The concept makes sense to me, and I always love a challenge with parameters.

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Blackbird-For Sale on Etsy

I did this collage last night (on a background I had already done) remembering a collage I did that I gave away. I might do a series of these, as it's my favorite background technique, and some rubber stamp images (Green Pepper Press by Michelle Ward) that I love working in to collage.

Monday, March 03, 2008

Collage Weekend

I haven't done any regular collage on canvas for a while, so I put together a couple this weekend. They are for sale on Etsy. As you can see I managed to continue the pink-thing. :) Hopefully I will get over "pink" soon.

The above collage consists of a torn/scrap paper background, lightly brushed with gesso, with the image of the flowering tree transferred on with gel medium. While I'm not all that into "cutesy" stuff, I thought the bird went perfectly with the tree.
A vintage ad, a vintage cookbook, a romance novel and some trim (above). Not too crazy about this one but it was fun to put together.

Saturday, March 01, 2008

Soldering Charms & Project Runway

I picked up a soldering iron for the first time a couple of days ago, and managed to solder these three charms. A LITTLE ROUGH, but an accomplishment. It's kind of addictive, all I've wanted to do is practice soldering the past few days.

On another note, this coming Wednesday is the season finale of Project Runway 4. I am pulling for Christian, although I like Jillian as well. I am not too fond of Rami, I just don't like the way he treated Sweet Pea in the avante garde challenge.

One thing I noticed this season is that there wasn't a real overpowering personality - maybe I should say an overpowering *abrasive* personality, such as Wendy in season 1, Santino in season 2, or Jeffrey in season 3. Christian stood out from the other designers, but he is just so dang cute I can't dislike him even a little.