Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Carry-on luggage

I got around to making myself a new wallet-sized album last week. The first one I made was more complicated than it needed to be...
... I'd cut up elastic cord for closures, and used stamps and inks all over the place. It was fun to make, but probably took more time than it should have.
This one is an altered 7 Gypsies naked album -- I think they'd just come out with it right after I made my other album. Went shopping in my stash and used some paper and rub-ons I'd bought on impulse. (There must be some way to control that, like eating before you go grocery shopping.) They verged on cute-overload, but the gaffer tape on the covers and the tissue paper scraps brought down the cute to an acceptable level.

I was going to add a little "Open" doorknob I bought with the album, but then I had a flash of practicality. It'd only get caught on whatever's rattling around in my purse. So that'll have to wait for another project.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Divorce drama

If you don't know by now, Jon and Kate of "Jon & Kate Plus Eight" appear to be getting that divorce that was so obviously bound to happen, even before he got caught gallivanting with another woman. I'm relieved, because now I won't have to wonder why Mr. Passive Aggressive is staying with Mrs. Contemptuous Control Freak.

On the same day, I got word from the Kentucky Department for Libraries & Archives that I can get my grandfather's complete divorce file. Which is awesome, from a genealogy standpoint.

If it's really complete, maybe it'll even have some info about his first marriage. Two ex-wives with one stone, so to speak. The file I'll be getting was from his divorce from the second wife, and family legend has it that he shot his wife's boyfriend in the butt when he found out about the affair. (Oh, please let that one be true!)

BTW, he also filed for divorce from his third wife, my grandmother -- when he was in his 80s. No, he didn't go through with it; as my father once put it, "Where's he gonna go?" But word of it got into the local paper, and the whole thing embarrassed the hell out of my mom. Well, this is the closest I'm gonna get to gossip from his contemporaries. He died at age 95, back in 1979.

EDIT 6/23/09: The file doesn't necessarily have info about the first marriage, but the researcher at KDLA said there's a deposition. Can't wait to read the evasions and trick questions!

Friday, June 19, 2009

"Don't quit your day job" -- Double X.com

Last week, I read a reality-check article about Etsy. Basically, the writer was saying: Girlfriend, you need to put down the pipe and step away from the crystal meth Etsy's peddling.

That drug would be the idea that you can live off your Etsy earnings and create a fabulous, meaningful, feminist life fueled by your art. The writer also notes there are hardly any guys selling on Etsy (hence my emphasis on "girlfriend") because it's not a place where most people make lots of money.

I have a few friends who are experienced sellers on Etsy, like Deryn, Catherine and Lisa. But they also sell in other venues, so I'm thinking Etsy might be a little more effective as a supplement or marketing tool. And I know Laurel is selling some gorgeous stuff on Etsy, but she's also teaching now, as do the others I mentioned.

Let me know what you think of the article -- and the comment section. A lot of readers got pretty heated after they read the story.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009


A lot of people just want to be rescued from themselves. They want to be airlifted out of their bodies and dropped into someone else's.
-- Tara (actress Toni Collette), "United States of Tara"
Make it your own, as Michelle Ward says. So.

The quote reminded me of this clip art woman and baby being hoisted by a rope. I started with scrapbook paper of a sunset sky, a fleur-de-lis foam stamp, and a section of die-cut art strips... I think they were originally meant to be used as a border.

I tried to monoprint with the fleur-de-lis stamp, but it turned out messier than I would've liked. Meh. So I outlined it with dots. The monoprinting worked a bit better, if not as sharp, with the art strip bit.

The clip art people comb through all the old drawings so you don't have to. So I printed the clip on papyrus. (It's not just for ancient Egyptians anymore.)
I had one hamsa pendant left in the goodies drawer, and it just about covers the woman's face. So I twisted off the loop with pliers and glued down the pendant.
Yes, you see four eyes in this picture. I layered a transfer of my fourth-grade school picture over a scrap picture of my mother, a picture taken while she was pregnant with me. (Would that be six eyes in this picture, since my mom was wearing glasses?)
Under the clip art is a transfer of my brother running up to the door of the house we grew up in. My mom took that picture during the move-in.
The quote from "United States of Tara" is written on elephant dung paper -- really! My mother-in-law brought it back for me from a safari -- coated with matte medium. I wrote on both sides with a paint pen, gluing down the more personal side. Added a little orangey color with ink pads. Then I fitted the paper under the white space of the transfer picture.

I may have found a little personal symbology with this piece, which didn't occur to me as I worked. I've always liked fleur-de-lis, and it just happens to be a symbol of my sorority, which brings up a whole host of other associations.

Michael de Meng uses the hamsa as one of his personal symbols, so I may have to work on that one a bit more. But the house photo... the house still exists, but it doesn't look like that anymore. Even better.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Now! While they're not looking!

I'm on pages 22 and 75. You won't see my artwork in the Artfest ATC swap featured within, but I was one of the participants. Whoo-hoo!
Also, some of my favorite people, like Catherine Witherell and Deryn Mentock, have art and interviews in there. Ordering my copy now.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

And yes, you can quote me on that

Whoo, it's a good thing I have friends to keep track of things that aren't in front of me and on fire.

My friend Denise noodged me on Facebook this morning:

"Lisa, I just got my hands on LK Ludwig's new Collaborative Art Journals book. I noticed a couple quotes from you. Did any of your artwork get published as well?"

Um... uh... I don't know! Gobsmacked, stunned, pleased as punch and stuff.

Sometime last year, LK had put out a call to artists to ask them why they create art, if I remember correctly. But I was pregnant at the time, so I may have dredged up something completely different from the sludge of memory. When I pick up a copy, I'll correct myself then. Meanwhile...


EDIT: The first response answered LK's question about the power of collaborative art and why artists participated in their various projects. The second addressed the impact of the Internet, email and blogging on collaborative art. Don't strain your eyes looking at my cell phone pictures -- go buy your copy to find out what I said!