Friday, July 25, 2014

Mail Art made on vacation!

 We went to Québec City for our vacation. I had hoped to find a Mail Artist there to have a meet-up with, but no such fortune. 

I did however make a lot of Mail Art while away. These pieces are a sample - I used scaps from found paper and added circles that I brought with me in my traveling Mail Art kit.

I altered commercial postcards and I made water color landscapes (not pleine aire, however.)

It was very relaxing to take a few moments each day and make little art pieces.

We were very inspired  by what we saw at museums and all around us, returning home with ideas for new work,
and memories of a terrific time in a new environment.

I had fun putting the bears into the postcard and am happy with how it turned out.

Monday, July 07, 2014

Mail Art, Little Free Library, and more


 I made this Mail Art to send to someone who sent me a lovely piece of Mail Art back in March and I've been sooo remiss in responding to people. I feel awful about it. Slowly I'm getting mail out. Oh everyone who sent me Mail Art, please know that I loved getting it.

I made this altered card using a postcard that we got at our most recent visit to the National Postal Museum on my birthday last week. I added the colorful old postage stamps to it. It's going to my niece and nephew in Wisconsin. They'll get a kick out of getting real mail.

I've been having fun punching out circles from old Art magazines. I'm preparing for a workshop that I'm going to do in two weeks, and I'm going to offer up a tin full of these circles as part of the project. More on this after it happens.

My workshop last week went really well. It was on Artist Trading Cards. Super fun to share. The participants were all teachers, grades kinder through end of high school, all different subject areas. 


So these two cards are the start of some fun for me, as I plan to make use of the circles, also.  I like circles a lot, and these are so planetary, and minimal.
 I'd seen this Little Free Library a few weeks ago when driving by the Richmond Ambulance Authority building. How cute, I thought, and today, with a book to deposit, I stopped there on the way home from playing with my grand-girl.

This is beautifully crafted and painted to look exactly like the ambulances.  It had a nice amount of books in it, not crowded like some of the other smaller LFLs. I hope that more people pay attention to it.

Do you have any LFLs in your neighborhood?
 My niece and her husband joined us to celebrate the American Independence day, 4th of July. She brought head bands for all of us to wear. Here she is modeling one. Cute, aren't they?
 Bizoo waits on my bedside table every morning waiting for me to wake up. He taps my head sometimes, and other times just sits patiently. The treats are in the top drawer!!
He knows it, as does our grand-girl, who likes giving the cat treats. We did, however, find her munching on a few herself, yesterday.
I just had to share these flowers with you. They were among the bunches at Amy's farmers' market stand last week. Gorgeous, like a painting, yes?

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Mail Art, a blatant promo, and something else.

 Yet, another Cactus and Lily card. After I took this photo of the card, I "cancelled" the stamps with a rubber stamp. It looks better with that addition, but this is good, too.
 I made this collage to send to a friend, not that she needs a reminder to enjoy!
 Here's the cactus with a new "friend." Lily has gone the way of cut flowers. What would be a good caption for this scene! ha ha ha
 Bizoo keeps watch while I sleep. I opened my eyes to him the other day - I grabbed my phone and caught this. "Treats, I want treats!" I can read his mind!

So the daily practice of making a skull every day for a year, set my son on a path that grew into something he didn't expect. Part way through he got a book deal - which became his first book SKULLS.   Since this book captured less than half of the project it was a dream of Noah's to have a book with the entire year's worth of skulls. Now, that's going to be a reality.
A new SKULLS book has been developed and it's on kickstarter now. It's going to be so good. If you like skulls (and we all should since we all have one) or know someone who does, then -
Be a supporter HERE.  

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Mail Art and our grand girl

 I'm playing around with strips and circles again.  I'm using OLD scraps in new arrangements. I'm very pleased with how the circle looks transparent but not happy that I didn't line the edges up squarely with the edge of the substrate.

Doing landscapes vertically for a visual challenge.

Here, I decided to not worry about the lining up of the strips - I decided to just put them off kilter, which gives the pieces a bit more energy. I also like the circle that I chose to add. 
 As regular readers know, I don't post many photos of our grand-girl. I feel it's partly privacy and partly not wanting to bore people.

I couldn't resist. She's wearing the hat we'd just gotten for her - she loves hats.

She's eating fresh strawberry pieces from a little divided dish. It was serious business.
She was quite busy putting her soft toys on the couch, then she climbed up with them. The pink gingham doll bottom right was her mom's doll. Z calls it Pink!
The doll she's holding in her right hand is from her great-aunt E. Because the fabric on the back has a horse print, Z calls this baby NayNay.

She is very content to sit with all her babies and animals.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Lagging behind - a confession.

 I'm going to confess once more that I'm lagging behind in responding to people who've sent me wonderful Mail Art.

I'm too embarrassed to even post a photo of the two piles on my work table. Eventually, I'll catch up - won't I?

Meanwhile, I continue to MAKE Mail Art. My process is once again, taking bits of scraps out of one of my tins and seeing how I can compose them. 3 pieces of paper. Yes. Satisfying.
 Our garden is looking good. The plants are growing back now that we've had lots of rain and sun. Our formerly shady back area has been exposed to sun by our tree being cut back a lot.

The cement duck, one of a pair, looks quite content in the foliage.

Here's the motto again - don't forget this as you move ahead in your own practice.

And don't forget, this is the motto for The Alternative Speakers Bureau.

If you're a reader in the Richmond, VA area, here's an opportunity (click on this) to participate in a creativity experience. It'll help you get unstuck.
Flashback Tuesday - the Atlantic Ocean, N.C. USA

Tuesday, June 03, 2014

A bit of a break, now Mail Art & More....

 I made another of my Cactus and Lily series.

I have lots more of these cards, so I'd better get busy coming up with "poetry" for them.

I was inspired by seeing some collages made with old papers. I made a few like this the previous week, too. Very satisfyin.
 I have a very old, very falling apart, plan of Paris. The paper just about crumbles as I touch it. The colors are so nice.
 I made this specifically for Jo Maeder, the author of a book that I read recently - When I Married My Mother. It was a lovely memoir. I decided to send her a collage using one of my friend's baby photos. Other people photos, what to do with them? Make collages, of course.

Here's a lovely surprise. Many of my long time readers might remember The Shelf! Well, here's another one that appeared on a pole at the end of the block down from our house. It's very neatly constructed which leads me to thinking that it was made by the dad of the little boy living a few houses away.

I put a couple of things in it.

The original shelf is up again, after a brief period of being away. It's better than ever, and more sturdily attached to it's pole. You can see it in my archives searching under "shelf" or "elflog."
A couple of Friday's ago, we stopped in at the tango dance at the Virginia Museum of Fine Art. I took lots of photos of feet that night.

Besides the regular dancers, a couple of professionals from Argentina did a demonstration of fancy dancing. It was quite fun and I'm thinking maybe we could try to dance Tango.

Do you dance? What do you do, ballroom Tango, Salsa?

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

MAIL ART, yay!

 It's been a fun weekend of making Mail Art.

On Saturday, I had the opportunity to speak with several people about Mail Art and it made me excited to make more pieces.

I don't know who gave these vintage postcards to me (don't worry collectors have told me that these aren't sought after.) I altered them with Italian phrases which I took out of my old Madame Butterfly libretto. I sent one to a friend who is actually Italian. I think he'll get a kick out of receiving it.

Here's a series that I did with my Cactus - Lily cards.

Again, so much fun for me to find words that create dialog between the two "friends."

I added an old stamp to each of the cards just because they needed something more.

 Does the dialog between them make you smile?   Any captions you come up with? Send them to me and I'll send you a card.
 Oh Lily, Oh Cactus! ha ha ha ha
 Today, I got serious with my Mail Art. I'd been thinking about text and old papers, and wanting to do a few more small collages.

To ensure that the viewer looks at them in the orientation that I wanted, I signed and titled them. As you know, I usually don't do this with my Mail Art.

I'm going to continue with this series for awhile. I need to get back to serious business, ha ha ha, rather than playing around.

or not.

Remember this motto from The Alternative Speakers Bureau.

Every day, make something, or do something creative. Practice!

If you need some help to get you started - you might find HERE.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

First Day Covers

 I'm still not sure about what to do with all the First Day covers I got from a friend.

Here are a couple more that I've collaged the fronts of , and added current postage but left some of the original postmark visible.
 I put a card inside with the saying "Creativity is a Practice."

I hope that somehow the stamps and the recipients connect.

What would you do with these envelopes. I appreciate any ideas you have.

Here's my kitty, Bizoo, with his favorite morning thing. A heavy duty plastic zipper bag.

He's so pleased, if a cat can show that, when I bring it out in the morning from the closet where I stash it over night.

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Mail Art and Mother's Day.

 Back to my old "tricks" with Mail Art collages. I found some left over scraps from a previous series and used them to create two new pieces. They remind me of landscapes.

The random letters spell nothing but with the addition of a question mark and en exclamation, wow, they sure do seem to be telling us something.
 I think this one is a particularly strong landscape. Alien, with so many suns in a black sky. What do you think? Evokes landscape, right?
 I made cards out of the photo that I posted on Facebook of my little arrangement on my porch rail. People thought these were small, like salt and pepper shakers, but the cactus is a large cookie jar in reality.

People gave me nice captions for them.
So I made up the postcard and sent them out to people with their caption on the reverse.

 I made lots of cards, so here are a couple that I added text to, making my own conversations.

These strike me as quite amusing. I have more cards to work with so you might see more examples of my silliness.
If you'd like to receive on in YOUR mail box, let me know.
 A friend asked me if I'd like some old stamps and of course I said, yes. BUT I got something even better than stamps, though I did get quite a few of those. What I got lots of were first day covers! I don't know if they have monetary value, but for me what a treasure trove for Mail Art. Here's one envelope that I changed up a bit to send out to someone. I popped a card saying "Creativity is a Practice" into the envelope so it wouldn't go empty.

Today was the American holiday called Mother's Day. It's been all changed up from the original idea of it, made so commercial. I never required that my kids celebrate me on this day. I felt pretty much honored on a regular basis year round, but it's nice day to be out and about. Every year for a long time, I've sent my kids cards on Mother's Day - if not for them, I wouldn't be one. But now we have a little grandgirl, and I like celebrating this new life and our DIL. We walked to Carytown where Z went to her favorite restaurant for her usual, a mini-baguette. She walked lots, amazing how fast she goes. We were exhausted but she still had energy.

So back to the First Day Covers: do you know anything about them, did you ever collect any? What did you do with them?

Thursday, May 08, 2014


Battery Park

 For a number of reasons, primarily the arrival of spring and the opening of the farmers' market, I've been thinking a lot about nature.

 I was happy when Mary of Uncustomary picked this as her monthly theme.

My walks in Battery Park with my grand have also made me aware changes in the season - with the little yellow flowers in abundance. My grand loves to pick them. Are they buttercups? I don't know. 
Battery Park

I love walking down the path towards the children's play area and having my grand get so happy about the flowers and the sweet gum balls that are all over the ground.

The market at Byrd House opened yesterday and my CSA had the most beautiful produce.

I got some curley kale, some peppermint chard, some asparagus, radishes, and salad greens.  I'm going so happy to have produce fresh from the fields again. Oh and eggs from really free range out in the open hens. I know my farmers! It's all real and tastes so good.

Here are the French radishes that I like to eat as a snack, crunchy and slightly spicy.

Everything is organic,
except these strawberries. They family says that they're not certified but hold to many organic practices. Hmmm. They're very tasty, sweet and juicy. 

Being part of a CSA since 2001, I've been made aware of buying local and seasonal. This really puts one in touch with nature. Tomatoes only grow certain times of the year, wow, not like year round in the grocery stores. Ditto all our other produce. It's seasonal!! It's nature.

Also, since I've gotten on Instagram, I'm taking lots of photos of flowers. Nature at it's prettiest.

After a long, cold winter, oh spring, I like you so much!!