Monday, 30 November 2015

Journeys # 10 - Autumn Leaves

Well it's December tomorrow which in my book is well and truly Winter so my Autumn Leaves journey just about makes it today if you regard today as the last day of Autumn. All the trees are looking a bit bare now but I do love the colours of Autumn so have used my Liquitex acrylic inks to splash on a bit of Autumn colour. 

Friday, 20 November 2015

Journeys # 9 - 2-Part Return

So for my journey this time I have tried to make the ticket look like part of the page. It's important when sticking a photograph, photocopy, or item of ephemera onto the page of your journal or sketchbook that it does not look like it's been plonked down otherwise your sketchbook is in danger of ending up looking too much like a scrapbook.  Using gesso I painted over the middle section of the ticket, glued the ticket onto the page then with an orange oil pastel coloured over the two orange bands top and bottom including the page of the sketchbook.  With a fine black marker pen I wrote over the gesso the details of the ticket.

Here is an example in another sketchbook where I have blended in a photograph I took at the V&A of a fabulous bejewelled stiletto shoe with the background of the page.

This is the original photo. I wanted the shoe to stand out so applied bleach to the background and then stuck the photo onto the page using gel medium.  A watercolour wash was then flooded over the page and the background of the photo making the shoe look part of the page. Great shoes!!

I have used the same technique here using a photo of a ceramic bowl taken in the ceramics section at the Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery. 

Saturday, 7 November 2015

Travelling Sketchbooks October -Turn Collar Right Side Out

The inspiration for this month's pages in the travelling sketchbook is a photograph I came across of my mum taken when she was only eighteen years old.  I love using photos in my work so decided on using the technique of image transfer, a technique not without its trials and tribulations in trying to create a replica of the original photo onto fabric or paper. Indeed much has been written in books and craft magazines of how to achieve the 'holy grail' of a successful image from the original photo.

One of the best books I have read about Image Transfer is would you believe called Image Transfer Workshop by Darlene Olivia McElroy.  It is American which I don't normally like as different names and terms are used in the US and they often use materials not available in this country but this one is really good and choc-a-bloc with methods with one even using wintergreen oil.  Isn't that what people use for rheumatism and arthritis? Anyway the image above of my mum was transferred onto white cotton poplin by first cutting the fabric to the size of an A4 sheet of paper, then attaching it to an A4 sheet of copy paper with 404 temporary spray adhesive and then fed through my ink jet printer, peel the paper away and you are left with the image.  Remember to flip the image especially if you are using text.

So the other image transfer technique I have been looking at is how to get an image transferred onto  the page of a book so it looks like it's actually been printed on the page without just sticking on a  photocopy.  This method was also taken from the Image Transfer book where the the image is printed onto a transparency sheet (or acetate) fed through an ink jet printer then placed face down onto a slightly dampened page of the book and burnished with the back of a spoon. A plant spray does this quite well. Peel away the  transparency and you are left with the image on the page. I thought this was a reasonable success although some of the paper had stuck to the transparency so maybe next time I should make the paper a bit damper. I added a wash of black watercolour too around the image but I love the faded quality this technique gives. Often a perfect image is not what's wanted.

I added a border of various bits of lace and embellished with a few buttons. Oh I love a bit of embellishment!

My mum was a keen dressmaker, in fact when she was only in her early teens she used to help her uncle out in his tailor's shop and he taught her the skill of tailoring. This was a photocopy of the  original photo collaged onto a page along with cuttings from an old dressmaking pattern I picked up in a charity shop, then overlayed with a sheet of tracing paper to give a misty image.

Turn the collar  right side out. Press lightly. Baste raw edges together. This is a sewing term I know only too well as she taught me how to dress make using commerical sewing patterns like Style and Simplicity.  I hasten to add that baste is not as in baste the turkey but to sew together with a tacking stitch which is a temporary stitch usually handsewn before the seams are stitched with a machine.

More cutting and sticking using photocopies of old snaps. My brother isn't in many of our holiday snaps because he was always the one behind the camera although you can see him top left in his cricket jumper and is that a tie Andrew?!! On holiday?!! Really?!!  These are holiday snaps taken in Bournemouth and Boscombe on the obiligatory caravan holiday when I was only about 3 or 4.  Love the one of me and my mum in our macs. I remember my mac came down to well below my knees almost to my ankles. Good old Gramps came along too for the ride.  

And this is the original photograph of my beautiful mum.  I bet she knitted that jumper herself. She taught me everything about sewing, knitting and life and I miss her loads.