Tag Archives: collages

When Worlds Collage

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When Worlds Collage

So hey, for once I’m not drag-assing in here at the last minute. I made this thing Wednesday and Thursday, and I’m pretty pleased with it.

It’s already been delivered to its destination. It’s a hand-made card made up of 3 collages, announcing to my friend and coworker that she’s getting an official Random Act of Kindness bestowed on her. For those who are just dropping in or haven’t seen any of my previous posts about Random Acts, it’s a non-profit organization that was dreamed up by actor Misha Collins and made reality with the help of people with mad non-profit organization skillz. It encourages acts of kindness on large scale (a trip to Haiti with a couple of dozen volunteers to help out a clinic and orphanage, which is going on right now) and small, and funds various cool things. I’ve sent in a few proposals, and finally got the go-ahead and the funding to do a project. In celebration of my friend, who gives up evenings, weekends and even vacation time to lead a Boy Scout troop and be on hand at the camps, and also hosted an exchange student for the past 9 months (and I never knew what a huge undertaking that is until now), I get to take her out for a day of pampering — mini-spa day plus a fancy dinner.

My original plan was to spring this on her as a suprise after luring her somewhere on the pretense of helping me with something, because that’s another thing about her that I wanted to celebrate too. She’s even loaned me her car for several days when mine was in the shop. But it finally occurred to me, in the immortal words of Boromir, “One does not simply kidnap one’s friend for a spa day.” And saying you need help with something “and be sure to shave yer legs” is just WEIRD. So I decided I must issue a spoiler for the occasion, but make it an occasion. I mulled over exactly what kind of card to make — I already had decided on the wording but needed to figure out what images to pair with it. I’m very fond of making collages, so I played with some images that were suggested by words I was using, and I raided my stash of awesome papers. And I played with fonts until I found a few that worked with each phrase I wanted to illustrate.

Epic Mod Podging ensued.

Page 1 is kind of a semi-private joke. (Which run about half the cost of a private joke, so it was more in line with my budget.)

Surprise!

“Shock and awe” is a great phrase, and I planned on using an image from the first Gulf War (where the phrase originated; it was the code name for the US war effort), but then in the middle of paste-up I started feeling hesitant about using bombing images — and, well, that pretty much WAS the first Gulf War. So I whipped out my trusty art book which I got for $1 because it was damaged (actually I got something like 5 of the same book, because y’know, collage) and started leafing through for images. Lo and behold, I found Martini’s Annunciation, which I saw in Italy and is one of my fave Annunciations. I mean, awe is the expected response here, but there’s such an air of pissiness in that look between Gabriel and the Virgin Mary, and just WHAT.

Why the stink eye?

So I pasted them onto the bombing photo (which I guess qualifies as actual photobombing) and did a little more leafing through the art book until I found a picture of two little boys peeping at people in a park. I gave the trees a bit of a trim (ahem) and put them in prime gawking position. There’s kind of a lightning bolt thing, too, which is the remnant of an apocalyptic painting on the reverse of Mary and Gabriel’s page. Decisions, decisions.

No shocker jokes here.

I had thought about grabbing some suitably bizarre picture(s) of Misha Collins off the internet for page 3, to go with Random and Awesome. But my printer was running low on colored ink, so all that came out was Misha’s shirt. I’m nothing if not adaptable, so I rummaged through some scans of Victorian ephemera I had made for a GISHWHES project. The Victorians were not only random but really kind of creepy and disturbing, and lo, I found this weird baby king with a duck on his head holding court with these two other babies with … something … on their heads.

We told you it was a random act.

The last little bit is one of my last pieces of Kinukinaya stationery (it’s this humongous Japanese bookstore in NYC, which has pens and stationery sets to DIE for) tucked away in an envelope, describing what the Random Act is all about. Sparkle paint was liberally applied to the envelope.

Then, since I had some tracing paper I had bought for another project, I decided to protect each page with a sheet. Automatic classiness!!! Then I punched holes and tied it together with yarn.

And then I delivered it, and it was appreciated not only for the message but for the weird me-ness of it , hurray. And cutting stuff up out of things you’re not normally supposed to cut up, and then pasting them down, is a pretty good stress-reliever, too.

Man, I miss Kinukinaya. Would love to go through there with an unlimited wad of cash to get my paper and pen freak on.

The Week in Dangerous Crafts

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The Week in Dangerous Crafts

So I’m back from Wiscon, the feminist SF convention that takes place in Madison every year. It’s my mini-vacation; after the first year of commuting an hour each way, I started staying at the con hotel, which means I can manage later nights and/or earlier mornings. The last few years I’ve been putting stuff in the art show, some for sale, some not, but just to show off. Mostly scarves — first the very subtly colored silks I made with plants for dye. This year I’ve found ways to get much brighter colors, so I put in mostly those newer scarves, plus some framed collages and some of the galaxy tees and deconstructed tee shirts I made the last couple of weeks. It was a lot — 48 pieces, which required marking them all down on the control sheet, then making bid sheets for each one, which I usually do over lunch with my friend Gwynne, who comes to the con from LA.

I missed a lot of the opening stuff while I put up all my pieces (with help from a wonderful volunteer), and then was so tired I crawled up to my room without going to the opening ceremonies or parties.

I checked in once or twice a day to see how things were going, but for most of the weekend, it didn’t seem like much was moving at all. But by the time I took down my 3 panels, I realized some had gone. Once we checked the bid sheets against the control sheet, I realized it was even more than I thought. I haven’t added it all up yet (the art show folks double and triple check that stuff, then send a check), but I think it’s going to prove to be worth the work. Not THAT much work, though. Maybe I’ll take it back down to two panels next year, and mostly keep it to scarves.

When I get over Wiscon exhaustion I’d like to put some up on Etsy, and maybe try a few scarves in my flea market booth. Otherwise, they will just be hanging around the house for another year, bogarting the TV remote and drinking beer.

Anyhow, here’s my booth:

Panels 1 & 2

…and the other side:

Next year, I hope to pare down my selection and my work, and maybe put some of the energy into making a kickass outfit for the big party night on Sunday. Everyone looked so inspirational and fabulous for the dance party!