Building a home requires so much beyond what I have in me to be adept at construction, let alone cleaning up after the wreckage. So when I found the brush that I was too tired to clean, justification came into play with one of the first of many talismans to follow. The collector who bought this treasures it and I’m happy for her, but darn, I wish I still had this!
Some examples of Talismans on paper featured birds. If memory serves, the 2D ones began with observing a house finch with a tuft of my Corgi’s fur in its beak, diving into its yew bush nest off the front porch. I pressed a sprig of yew and added a little bundle of fur. Next there was a Talisman for the mockingbird who nested in the lilac bush close by.
An exciting moment for a paper artist happens when a new paper is explored for the first time, obviously! Spanish Capellades Abaca paper is extraordinary for several reasons. It takes watercolor so well and it is ultra thin but strong. Handmade with four deckle edges, it just feels good to touch and watch as colors interact with the fibers. I did a big series with this paper that I used to apply for the Al Smith Fellowship, see the next post…
Some from the series featured a bird, and it’s pencil tracing. Details from these became the subject of condolence cards.
“26” was a loose-leaf book project. Using odd-shaped scrapes of Arches Cover paper, each two page spread has images and information about the 26 safety energy locks of Jin Shin Jyutsu and various correspondences to that number. I’m including images of these in the Atlas of the Year program.
My best artwork began with writing one hundred times, “Always Merry and Bright” on the papers from the triptych of the same name. Those words are my mantra, taken from Henry Miller. We had just returned from a pilgrimage to the Henry Miller Memorial Library in Big Sur, and I was floating with joy.
I added writing to subsequent collages more often, usually constructing the border.
Below is a booth photo of one of the seven Kentucky Crafted; the Markets I participated with. I notice on the back wall the Mockingbird and House Finch Talismans I mentioned earlier. “Always Merry and Bright” is on the far left. I was always proud of my booth setup, wrote about the Best New Exhibitor Award in 2004. It was quite a lot of work to set up. We were always among the last to be set up and the last to break down. I miss being a part of that community. Recently my friend Laverne urged me to display again with a not so over the top setup. If I can figure that one out, I might!
I love this.
Thanks, Susan. It was a fun era to look back on, with some of my all time favorite artworks.