Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Crazy pants

It's 1:30 AM.
I should have been in bed four hours ago, because
I'm supposed to get up and start my day four hours from now.

Instead I'm wide awake and covered in glue.

Early Thursday morning (a mere 30 hours from now) I will be on a runway at Logan Airport, about to take off for San Francisco and the Ex Postal Facto conference.

I am ridiculously excited about this, but as the day looms, I am becoming increasingly crazy.
At first it was just a "I have so much to do before I leave" kind of crazy.  The kind of crazy in which I make endless checklists and hold meetings, and send emails and make spreadsheets.

But then it turned into a "let's invent things to worry about" kind of crazy.
The brand of worry that comes from being an introvert (disguised as an extrovert) faced with 4 days of non-stop social interaction with people I barely know.
(and let my qualify that - anyone I've known for less than 20 years is someone I "barely know")

In spite of the fact that I haven't packed, and haven't done a half-dozen other more critical missions, I decided I could not possibly go to San Francisco until my taxes were done.  So yes, little-miss-crazy-pants did her taxes tonight.
and ate a bunch of dark chocolate while she did it, even though it was already well past her bedtime.
At 10:30, when I was done and buzzing, and compulsively clicking on stupid internet videos and sending ridiculous texts to my west coast friends who were still awake thanks to the time difference, I decided what I needed more than sleep was art.

well DUH!
I have been completely neglecting my creative needs for the last week.
A half-hearted attempt to get a postcard series going over the weekend lay spread on my table in careless neglect.  All of my mental energy has gone into spinning my wheels and needlessy worrying.

So at last, for a few sweet stolen hours, the crazy pants were turned back into the art pants.  

This series of postcards emerged.  
They may or may not be done, but either way they will be packed in my suitcase, and perhaps mailed from San Francisco.
All were made with Citra-solv papers, gelli printed papers, vintage photos (from a thrift store photo album) and odd bits of old science textbooks.

I know tomorrow will be a surreal day of sleep deprivation and haphazard preparation.  I will probably end up packing too many art supplies and not enough underwear, but it will all be worth it.
I'm grounded.
I'm calm.
I'm ready.
Moral of the story: never trade the art pants for the crazy pants.

SF here I come!

Friday, February 7, 2014

Round Robin Zine

The Super Mail Artists are at it again.
Mandy is leading us in our third round robin "postcard zine"

We take several sheets of standard 8.5" x 11" cardstock, fold it in half, stitch it across the fold to hold it together like a pamphlet, and then we decorate one side with art, use the other side for a message/address, seal the edges of the pamphlet shut and mail it off like a giant postcard.

The next person in line carefully unseals it, flips over a new page and creates their own giant two sided postcard, mailing it off the the next person on the list until at last the little zine is full and comes home to it's original creator.

We had the option to pick a theme for our zines, and my theme is chickens.
Yup, chickens.
chickens make me laugh.
plus, I got to use my favorite "joke"

It's not terribly clear in the picture below, but that little chick is saying "chicken butt"

This is what comes from spending so much time with second graders.
Any time someone says "guess what" I have to answer "chicken butt."
Even if you don't hear me say it out loud, I guarantee you I have said in my head and giggled.

In addition to starting my own zine, I've contributed to Carroll's.
Her theme is COLOR.  The more colorful the better.

Here's my contribution:

There are six of us in the group this time, so I'll have four more zines to work on in the coming months.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Aqua and Orange

One day a few weeks ago, I got a surprise package from a mail art acquaintance, Sherri Ayers.  Inside was this orange and aqua canvas:

Sherri had started it and couldn't figure out where to go next. 
She sent it to me with the challenge to do something with it.

How could I resist?
My favorite colors spread across canvas with delicious textures - what's not to love?
To start, I took a white sharpie paint pen, wrote loosely over a transparency, and glued a piece of it  down on the canvas (face down so that the writing is reversed).  I used a piece of a rubber rug pad to stamp the pattern in lighter blue:

Next I used a piece of a foam "pool noodle" to stamp the large orange circles.

I rolled a light coat of white paint over the whole painting to mute the colors a little bit:

The white circles on the right were first stamped on tissue paper then cut and glued to the canvas.

The flowers came from a piece of fancy tissue paper that was laying on my desk:

Another transparency was added, this time with black writing:

Finally, I loosely painted a flower on deli paper and cut and pasted it in place:

I don't know how I feel about it.  It's a little cuter than my usual fare, but the composition pleases me.
It sat around for a few days, and then I released it back into the wild.

Big thanks to Sherri for sending me the canvas.  It was a fun challenge.