Flag Books and Morocco Adventure


My artistic talents are going to be focused on finding and eating some really exquisite food while I am traveling in Morocco this May.  The plan is to take photos of everything and then each evening pick the most delightful and print it out on my new Sprocket mini printer that communicates with my iPhone.  Then I place the 2" by 3" photo on a tag and write what and where and all the info.  When I get home I  put them all together into fantastic flag book.  The photos are examples of a flag book  made earlier in the year.  This new one will have yarns I collect and hopefully a cover I find in a souk along the way.


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Studio Tour alternative site!


It is always fun to see my work going up in Laurie's.  Sue always puts a lot of thought in placement to show off both the art and the clothes.  I am thrilled to be able to display my work during the Studio Tour this May as I know there will be lots of art lovers prowling Stanwood and the island looking for just the right piece to go in their homes.
Laurie's is just across the street from the Guilded Gallery so drop in while in will be glad you did!


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Pop Up Cards!


This year three of us are making pop up cards to exchange .  It is a challenge for me as I do not do measuring...exactly...over and over again well.  Card making is detail oriented and I am not. However, I am good at breaking rules and according to my Paper Farm guru pop ups do not have words....mine do...sometimes. 
My goal is to use a different mechanism on each card...gradually getting harder and more sophisticated.  This is my second  shot at it, and I liked the results of the frame and the background daff fields.  I used catalogs from the Tulip Festival.....waiting for the right words to hit me before signing and sending off.


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Studio cleanup..surprises!!


This is a good time to be going through all the shelves in my studio to just see what is there.  Surprise surprise ...I have sooo many more of the big sheets of paper than I remember. Putting all the like kinds together so I can find big black when I need it and printmaking paper when I want that.    Opening up cardboard folders I found some pastels that I finished many years ago and I guess have been sitting here just waiting to be found.  When i first started back doing my art in 2005 I thought I wanted to do pastels because of the bold vibrant colors.  I soon learned I really liked texture better and it is hard to get texture with pastels .  That is when I started experimenting with the molding paste...pastels do not stick to molding paste.

I like these pieces but they seem a bit flat to me...tried adding yarns as that is my go to nowadays but...didn't like that either. So, I am leaving as is and saying ..yes, you are done.


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Paper nests!


Our small art group decided to make nests in March, but we had no idea just how we wanted to make them.  I went to Youtube to see how others make them.  There were several approaches;  I combined a couple ideas and set to work.  I wanted something that could be done in a few hours and was not really messy. The brown paper bag starter fit the bill.  Start with several small paper bags, crumple, cut fringe and you have your base.  Between the layers of brown bags I laid out my cut strips from Gelli printed papers and the photo transfer papers I had just completed.  Spritz it with alcohol or inks...and these strips crumple up nicely.  Photo below is the nest at this stage..oh..add yarn! I always add yarn and flick paint!  Then I decided it needed  o attache to something as it was just a flat bottom nest and boring..I found a branch that forked nicely and attached my nest with masking tape...after I had enlarged it a bit with newspaper crushed all up and held together with tape.  It now had become a paper mache project.....covered with more of my special papers I have created ...tape, mat medium, paper.....attached to two branches.  Now all it needed was more brightly colored strips from the same papers and...a dried out old tea bag..round....for the inside nesting materials to rest on....and it was done.  Each layer was held down by the bag on top or the teabag!  Filled it with acorn parts and put one of my acorn people on the side!!  Placed it in a lovely tall vase and there you have it!


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Box making


Working with paper to create cards and boxes is relatively new to me.  Carol has been giving instruction now for a few years, but this is our first box.  Boxes are her specialty and she is a great instructor. 
There are some shots with the pieces laid out and attached to the artist tyvek and then when covered held with rubber bands to cure. The last are more finished shots showing off the cool paper and that awesome glass button that I got from Kathy...the button Queen among other notable titles.


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Photo transfers


 Vogue magazines have very artsy high contrast ads that worked well for this project. I tore out several and went to work. The example shows what it looks like with just the thin layer of paint covering the image, the first print on a very cool old piece of music, and the last ghost print on a light paper.  I ended up with several that I really liked but..what to do with them?  One snowy day while trapped in my studio I tore them up and made a collage using them.  Note.worthy....a 14" by 11' inch collage on watercolor paper using Gelli printed images.


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Pop up cards


There are three of the Camano Art Buddies that are experimenting with pop up cards this year.  Working with different papers to create a 3" by 3" card to send to each other.  It takes some planning to get it all to work but so first one..turned out great.


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Evening at Renee's


June 28th from 3 until 6 come down and enjoy the art, jewelry and great clothing at Renee's in Everett.  The store is on Colby right downtown..2820 to be exact.  There will be refreshments and prizes.  You get the opportunity to design an outfit for the next PowerWoman...if you so desire.
Kathy Dannerbeck will have a wonderful selection of her handmade jewelry for you to try on and possibly match up with some great clothing offered by Renee's.   

My PowerWomen really fit into this really cool boutique as they are into the outfits!!! You will be inspired....I am sure to come up with an outfit for yourself as will as one of my women!


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Putting together the outfit


After I have the design down for my dancing Power Woman and get her painted, I then start working on the outfit.
First...I look through all my boxes of Citro Solve papers and printed papers and put ones together that have contrast to one another and look good together.  Then I get out my special purchased papers and do the same.  When I decide on the look..and the colors I like best ..then
Second ...I use tracing paper to design an outfit over the top of the naked woman.  These have always been in at least two pieces..the top and the bottom..usually with tights or bloomers.. The headdress is usually the last thing I work on. 
Third..I start cutting out one piece at a time and trying it on..slowly building up the layers. I am now paying more attention to making the cuts to help create the effect of the sleeves going around the arms  and the jackets going behind the back.
At this stage I may have to try several different jackets to get the "right" one. What I think will look good doesn't always. Sooo I keep making tops and bottoms until I find the perfect ones!
Forth..I start to glue the pieces in place. This is more difficult than you might think as some are small and all have to be in exactly the right spot to look right.  some of the papers are thin and with glue on them they curl It is when it turns out right!


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Helen's Originals showcases abstract acrylic mixed media, printmaking with monotypes, dry point and gyotaku, figurative collage, and informative blog entries. 

 Helen SaundersCamano Island, WA360-320-0136