Wednesday, December 28, 2011

2011 ornament

Back in the late 70s, we used to make Christmas ornaments as a girl scouts fundraiser. They were made from old Christmas cards, cut into circles which were then folded into triangles. The triangles were stapled together along the 3 edges, and 25 of these made a ball ornament. The bigger the original circle cutouts, the bigger the resulting ball. And of course there would be glitter on all the edges (to conceal the staples). We made huge ones and also little ones.

I hadn't made those in a long time, but decided to make another style of ornament from the 2011 cards. We don't get so many cards any more (since we don't send any...ahem). But there were enough cards with the right size images to make this. I used 4 cottage cheese container lids as the substrates, gel medium as the glue to cover the lids with scraps of decorative paper. With the plastic lids, I didn't need to worry about grain and I could use any little bit of paper scrap I had! Yippee! Wrapped gold ribbon around each of the segments and put one coat of GAC 500 over the decorative paper. The card cutouts were then collaged on after that. This is followed by gold paint along the edges...but of course!

The top shot is a star, from the Scarlet Star Studios.

Here are shots of a few of the segments. This is a snowflake from my mom.

Some Christmas stockings from a friend's mom.

From the famous Michael5000. Although I must say that, since he only spent 3.5 cents on this card, the paper is rather thin and weak, and it's not keeping the 2 halves open very well, against the push of the neighboring cards, which are clearly made of more stout stock. (OK, he might've said that he spent 35 cents on the card, but of course, I can no longer tell because the card is now cut up and glued to the ornament.) I even had to give it a little help by attaching another small piece of paper; but alas, it didn't help much.

And from a college friend and his wife.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Red Bean Paste and Apple Pie

Hey, I got my 2012 RACC Project Grant for Red Bean Paste and Apple Pie! Here's the intent for this project proposal:

"I will create a series of paintings using food as a metaphor to explore my transformation as a first-generation American. Nothing is more personal than each mouthful we put into our bodies, but what we eat and how we eat it are both seen as cultural and political indicators. I will use this duality to explore what it means to be an immigrant American by examining the changes to my diet and eating habits since immigrating to the United States. The paintings will be small format diptychs in gouache and acrylic on paper mounted on panels. This is the second of a multi-part series on immigration and migration."

I'll be starting to work on these paintings pretty much immediately. I've promised a lot of paintings, and at the speed I paint, it's gonna be a full time gig.

The first part of this multi-part series on immigration and migration is, of course, The Laundry Maze. Here's the proposal for The Laundry Maze , and here's the webpage set up for doing the survey.

You should, of course, help spread the word!

The third part is a book. It will be one-of-a-kind, and pretty big. At least as I see it in my head right now.

Thursday, December 08, 2011

Two hummingbirds

Hummingbird of the Day, gouache & acrylic, 12"x12", 2011

Hummingbird of the Night, gouache & acrylic, 12"x12", 2011

Doing a commission is a lot different than doing something without a final client in mind, especially in this case where stories were provided, although I was able to add my own little twists to the basic premise. Definitely not the usual mode of operation around these parts where I'm making up the story as I go, and changing the rules as I go. The final images are above, here are some process photos:

Initially, I wanted the two pieces to be bolted together and so the rocks continue from the right into the left piece. But after I completed them both, I decided they were better on their own.