Saturday, April 15, 2006

Creative Block Today--Darn

Today my husband took our children to his parent’s house for a visit. Actually to be more honest he was there doing prep work for the Easter meal which my husband is cooking for the entire family. (My husband LOVES to cook from scratch and to try gourmet recipes.) I cook also but he loves to do it and he thinks it is real fun, so I let him do it. We are eating at his parents house as per the family tradition although for the first time ever we won't be dining in the formal dining room, because that has been converted into a temporary bedroom since my father-in-law has Cancer and has been very ill. Since there is no dining room there, we would have been happy to host the dinner at our home but since my father-in-law is not feeling well he will do best to stay at his home. So anyway, I had 'me time' today. I wanted to spend the day making ATCs. If you don't already know it I will share that part of my sanity has been saved through our very stressful times by me experimenting with art and playing at making art and ATCs.

So I was spoiled today with all this free time, but I had creative block.

First I left the art materials to check email, thinking that would be a nice break. Not too many emails are coming through on any of my chat lists or from my friends. Gee, I guess others are prepping for Easter! Imagine that!

Then, I tried working on a swap which is a "Spanish" swap, we have to use Spanish text in the ATCs in some way, shape, or manner. The hostess sent each participant pages from books written in Spanish. I just felt immobilized and could not do anything with it. One problem I had is that I love the full color images from old books and I want to use them but they are too large to fit on an ATC and in order to keep the text with the image I'd have to cut the text out and adhere it to somewhere else on the ATC. Also the way the images are, to use just a tiny piece of them is not quite possible if the original intent of the image is to be used. For example one image is of a broken arm bone, another of CPR being given to another person. To use a tiny part of those on an ATC would not show the thing in its original context, which I guess could be alright, but it would be kind of just a 'color' image not an image that someone could decipher even what the thing is. It is hard to explain!

I used the time to put top coats on all my uncoated/unsealed ATCs which I am either keeping or have not swapped out yet. I just discovered that Golden acrylic soft gel medium in gloss makes a great top coating.

Later I made computer print-out’s of my personal information, then added my labels to the backs of the ATCs which had not been labeled in the past. Tomorrow I will sign them and then put a coating on the back and let that dry.

I also packaged up an ATC swap to mail out to the swap hostess. That was a 'rubber stamp' swap which just had to have a rubber stamped image someplace on the ATC.

Just as I was starting to use stamp ink with a stipple brush on some of the Spanish pages, and was getting excited about what was happening, my family came home. Since it was dinner time I quickly cleaned everything up to clear the kitchen table (my work space) so we could eat dinner on the table.

Then we decided we were not really hungry and we didn't eat a dinner meal. Sigh.

Later, we started watching a documentary about Blackbeard the Pirate called “Blackbeard Terror at Sea” but I was too restless to sit and watch TV, so I glanced at the current issue of Somerset Studio magazine and saw some artwork (mixed media collage) which I could use as inspiration for these ATCs. It would be a big departure from what I had planned to do. The other challenge is that the ATC size is so small that to try to do what was done in the much larger pieces in the magazine will be difficult.

After playing two games of “Secret Door” by Family Pastimes,

I stole a few minutes to adhere the entire front surface of about 10 ATCs with the Spanish book pages (with no illustrations) with Golden acrylic soft gel medium, matte. That will dry overnight.

I will share what else happens later in the week as I have time to work on it more.

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inki said...

Looking forward ro seeing what you do, Christine! I like your in- depth descriptions. :)

Someplace in the middle said...

Can you scan the book images and print them out smaller for your ATCs?

christinemm said...

I can't do that for two reasons. One is that my color printer is an ink jet and if I use anything over the top of it, the color will float off and it will be ruined.

I have a very old black ink only laser printer but the quality of the printouts is terrible, you see lots of pixels.

The cool thing about the illustrations of those Spanish books is they are old, probably from the 1950s or 1960s, the color in them is what makes them look so good, and I'd want them to be in color.

Thanks for the suggesions, though!