The candy has been passed out, the lights turned off, orange and purple candles extinguished, and I'm packed. Our plane leaves Lexington in a couple of hours, destination Ft. Walton Beach, Florida, to attend the Sunday wedding of one our long-time best friends. They don't have kids so of course they didn't plan their big day around Halloween and the Thriller re-enactment that follows, which my son is played in for the first time (snare drum). So, it has been an interesting mix of last minute laundry, costume details, and packing, wondering what the heck I'm going to wear to a wedding on the beach.
I'm leaving a horrendously messy studio layered with Christmas ornaments gessoed and painted, in a sea of found objects, buttons, ribbon, charms, piles of images and papers, glitter and trim to finish them, along with the cards, collages and jewelry I'm making for a Holiday Bazaar - in two weeks. That's way before I start my holiday preparation, so it has been a bit challenging to get into the spirit. Hand me another mini Snickers please! I am so fortunate to have been invited to be a vendor this year, and it will be great exposure, hopefully enough sales (if anyone ever figures out out much 'enough' is, please let me know). Even if I don't have a clue how many of what to make, I'm sure it will be a valuable and memorable learning experience.
While digging through stuff, I came across this print, which I realize now is a collage. For over a decade BC, (before children) I had a darkroom in my house; I spent hours immersed in chemicals, resulting in tons of prints that weren't precisely right, needing a dodge here or slight burn, maybe a different paper. I could never throw the ones that were nearly good enough.
Just for the fun of it one day I cut apart a bunch of images and stuck them onto a background photo of a tiny country church on a hillside. The church didn't hold much interest on its own so I found elements that seemed to coordinate somehow and started sticking them together. I didn't think of it as collage, since I didn't know what the heck that was, but I made several pieces before switching to digital manipulation.
My friend Jodi at Sweet Repeats said I should post this one, so I am. Not just because she told me too, though she is sitting might pretty these days, her article newly published in Cloth Paper Scissors and all... multiple pages that showcase her brilliant work. But because she pointed out the fact that it was collage and I somehow knew it instinctively back then, even if I didn't recognize it as such.
Blog buds, where would we be without them? Where would I be without you? Sharing stories, support and advice, basking in the feeling that arises from connecting in a tangible and meaningful way with mixed media artists around the globe? A post, comment, help with a technique or email has sustained me in the hollowest of moments. Come to think of it, I wouldn't even have a blog if Jane at Random Arts hadn't told me I needed to start one (ha, there I go again, bossy me, making it sound like I wait around for further instruction), while I was visiting her shop this past April. So, I returned home and the next day shoved aside many chores and issues that needed tending, to make a page that would do what... be a place to stick my art and photos, and ramble on about one or another of the many subjects about which I am passionate? But by golly, she was right, and I've told her so.
Being such a newcomer to the world of mixed media has its challenges, but with friends like Jodi, Jane, Karin at A View Beyond Words, Sherry at Esprit d'Art, my swap group buddies, the incessant nagging of my best friends Tani and Karen at Biographia, and SO many others, I am uplifted, challenged and nurtured. Unlike the man on the bench in the collage I made years ago, when being an artist was furthest from my mind, I am definitely not alone. So, if you are reading this, thank you. I appreciate your spending time here with me.
By the time we get back from the wedding it will be (gulp) election day! That's another story...