Sunday, June 29, 2014

Descent into summer camp madness

First day of camp.
After an 11 hour day in which my name was called every other minute, I managed to glue a few desk scraps onto a pre-painted index card.
Done in sixty seconds and I didn't even resort to orange and aqua circles.
Feeling pretty proud of myself.

Day two of camp.  
I didn't think it was possible to be more exhausted than yesterday, yet I came home and stared dumbly at my blank index cards for over a half hour without moving.  I might have drooled a little.
I finally challenged myself to use only things that had arrived in that day's mail.

Those green leaves came from a chocolate bar wrapper.  The entire bar may or may not have been consumed in the making of this collage.
(thanks Gina!)
I lost count of the number of times I moved the "bold and brisk" text back and forth from above the word "people" to below the word "people".  At the time it seemed like the most critical decision in the world, as if people's lives hung in the balance.  I may have been a little bit delirious.  

Day Three of camp
(a.k.a. the "glue random sh*t down" day)
All three backgrounds were pre-painted over a year ago and stuffed in a box of crap that sits on my desk.
Inspiration had been completely pummeled out of me at this point, but that didn't stop me, and what I lacked in quality I made up for in quantity. 

 (This was the same day I superimposed the picture of my family over the Moscow skyline.  I was getting a little punchy.)

Saturday.  Not a camper in sight.
Nothing like a day of rest to bring me back to my usual ICAD sensibilities.

Stay tuned for next week's adventure, in which I consider growing a mustache and changing my name to Harold.

Friday, June 27, 2014


A family picture taken against a very institutional looking background led me to post a series of pictures on facebook of us standing in front of more interesting scenery.

Which led to tonight's index card.

My stomach hurts from cracking myself up.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

ICAD catch up

This year's index cards are really a mixed bag.  I don't have a particular theme or vision.  I am more often then not staring at the card with zero inspiration.  Some of my cards I really love, but others I feel like I'm phoning it in.
Regardless, I've managed to make at least one a day, which is really the point of the challenge, isn't it?

I was home from my travels and happy to play with some new paint I bought in Virginia.  This one made me happy.

Having a "Parks and Recreation" marathon with Ric.  Dragged out my inktense pencils which I haven't used in ages.  Not sure I love where this card ended up, but I sure do love those pencils when used with a water brush.

This one was also done in front of the TV.  We've had a pair of Carolina wrens in the tree in front of the house.  I never see wrens out front, I only see them in back at the feeder.  I noticed them because one morning I let Jake outside and immediately heard a terrible racket.  Upon investigation it was the two wrens loudly chastising him from the tree.  I watched this same thing happen every time I let him out over several days.  It seems they were trying to build a nest in my windowbox, but between the feline presence, and my need to water the flowers, the wrens have given up and found a less treacherous place to nest.

I came really really close to not making an index card this day.  I'd fallen sound asleep on the couch watching a movie (living it up on a Friday night!) and was stumbling up to bed around midnight when I realized I hadn't done my card.
My pillows beckoned, but my desire to stick with this challenge was stronger.
I grabbed my scrap basket and found a bunch of circles cut from my marbled paper.  Since I obsessively file my painted papers by color in a file cabinet, it wasn't hard to find complementary strips to use as the background.  A little charcoal pencil and I called it a night. 

Fun with security envelopes - and I guess a reminder to myself that I really don't have to make a card if I don't want to.  The world won't end.  No one will be angry.  Just acknowledging this is often enough to keep me going.  I don't have to do this, but I want to.

With no inspiration in sight, I turned to the "summer of color."  I haven't been playing along this year, but popped in to see the color combo of the week - salmon, dark teal and a splash of white.
Done and done.
(thanks to those color-filed papers once again!)

Remnants of Virginia.
Transparent purple and red paints bought on vacation.
More purple raffia from my mom's bouquet.
Red circles of holographic wrapping paper, discarded by my niece.

Gifted papers, a chocolate bar wrapper, some scraps.

My summer camp program starts tomorrow, and I enter an intense period of crazy-busy-happy-exhausted-I'm changing my name so no one calls me again, but omg I love camp.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

One staple collage

I largely disregard the ICAD prompts, but I could not resist the challenge of a one-staple collage.

The purple stringy stuff in the background came wrapped around a bouquet of flowers.  All the other bits were pulled from my magic bag of scraps.  The staple is at the base of the triangle.

I may end up gluing it down when I get home tomorrow, just so it will fit in my "ICAD bucket."  Or maybe not.

Monday, June 16, 2014

ICAD - the newspaper and crayon edition

The supplies deprivation continues.  Tonight I don't even have my handy travel bag of scraps.  Instead, I've got some crayons, a red pen, and the Washington Post.  Newspaper is horrible to work with, and cheap wax crayons aren't that fun either, yet I made four index cards in a row.


yellow pages ICAD

Tonight's index card is made exclusively from the Manassas, Virginia yellow pages (with apologies to the Day's Inn.)
Gina and Phillip, this one's for you.

Sunday, June 15, 2014

ICAD to go

I'm hanging out in Virginia with my beloved family this weekend - staying up late at my sister's house and rolling back to our hotel room intending to crash, and then remembering I haven't done an index card.

I had only planned to pack my scissors and glue stick and a sharpie, figuring I could raid my sister's recycling bin for collage fodder.  Thankfully at the last minute I grabbed two large handfuls of bits from my scrap basket, otherwise you'd be getting index cards using nothing but the hotel room yellow-pages.


6-14-14 #1

6-14-14 #2
(even when I think I'm so tired that I think I can't hold my head up one second longer, if you sit me down with a glue stick and a bag of scraps it's hard for me to stop!)

Here's my artistic travel kit:

and here's Thursday's index card, made at about 10:00PM, while I was packing for this trip, and realizing I had to be up in six hours to hit the road and I still had so much to do:


Once again, the ICAD challenge proves to me that I CAN be creative every single day and that it really doesn't take much in the way of time or materials.

Thursday, June 12, 2014

most useful tool

Wanna know the tool I've been using most often lately, and have found most indispensable?

It's not my trusty brayer, or my sharpest scissors, or some fancy gimmick.

It's this:

A humble piece of cardboard with a 3x5" hole in it.
Every night I sit down to create my index card collage, and as I push my bits of paper this way and that trying to find a nice composition.....

Laying this frame on top makes everything become very clear:

And what starts as a pile of scraps quickly becomes the finished 3x5 collage.

Here are my other index cards from this week:



I'll be taking the ICAD show on the road for the next 5 days as we drive south to spend time with family.  You can bet I'll be packing my trusty cardboard.

In the meantime, I've been interviewed by the wonderful Amy Hood for issue four of her "Art Together" zine!  The zine became available for sale a few days ago, and Amy has an excerpt of my interview on her website today.

Saturday, June 7, 2014

ICAD days 2-7

June 2nd:

June 3rd:
testing out a tissue paper technique that I want to use on a book cover.
How come I never notice how poorly I cut out text until I post it online?
I swear it doesn't look that crooked when I hold it in my hand.

June 4th:

June 5th:
Got to work and realized I wouldn't be home until 11PM or so and doubted I'd feel up for an index card that late in the day, so I made this one at my desk using gum wrappers, security envelope, tissue box, and an ad from the recycling bin:

June 6th:

June 7th:

I bought a little foot rest for myself today, and someone immediately appropriated it.  
Guess I'll stand.

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

New hope for people with pink bathrooms

Here's the cover of the altered book I'm using for the collaborative round-robin I'm doing. 
(Avert your eyes, Mom.)

 As for the title,
I've been holding onto this bit of text forever, not wanting to give it away.
I found the perfect use for it on the spine of my book.

There's a message for the members of the group written on the library card inside the pocket.

The book I'm altering is a "Speedwriting" Dictionary from the late 30's.

I realized, as I worked on this, that I could use even more of my favorite bits that I've been hoarding, knowing they will eventually come back to me.
Since the project is a collaborative one, I expect (and hope!) some of these pages will have things added or covered or altered. 

Mine has gone out in the mail and I'm eagerly awaiting the one that will arrive in my mailbox later this week.