Monday, February 25, 2013

Getting the Word Out

Photo credit: Taima Kern/The Reporter Media
Good morning, dear readers!!  It's so nice to be back!  I apologize for my lengthy absence but many of my art deadlines have passed and I'm able to write again.

And speaking of writing, the tables have been turned on me - I have been the subject of a very lovely article in our local paper!  MOI!

When I learned that The Reporter was starting a series entitled "The Artist Next Door", I hopped on that bandwagon as fast as I could.  I must've sent them a message the first day I was able, because I'm only the second artist in the series!

Essentially, the column is a bi-weekly look at artists in our community.  I thought this would be a PERFECT way to preach the ephemera gospel to those who haven't heard the good news (and showcase my art in the meantime).

And while I obviously was there during the filming of the video and I helped write the article, the end product is so much more wonderful than I could ever have imagined!  I was a little overwhelmed when I saw the video AND read the article!  The reporter who both filmed and interviewed me, Taima Kern, was extremely generous with her descriptions of my work and my community involvement.  Even better?  You now get to see where I work (and hear my Wisconsin accent, tee hee) AND the ridiculously bountiful amount of ephemera which surrounds me every day.

I still can't believe that I am able to write about ephemera on a weekly basis and make art from my collection every day.  It's a dream come true!  And I want everyone to know what you and I already do - that you can "take the discarded and make it arted"!  Here's to more and more folks discovering the joys of Ephemeraology!!!  :D

Monday, February 11, 2013


I'm going to credit (blame?) this entire post on the Fond du Lac Public Library - Terri, if you're reading this, it's all your fault!  :D

Okay, a little back story - Terri Fleming, the community liaison for our library, knows that my friends and I like using books in our collages.  Not just the pages, either - the spines, the covers, the vintage library card pockets you sometimes find in the older books - we utilize everything we can find!  So when a big shipment of Readers Digest Condensed Books came in to The Book Cellar recently, guess who she notified immediately?  :D

Oh, the Book Cellar (get it?) is FANTASTIC!  It's a used book store located right in our library!  I have found more books (and collage fodder!) there than anyplace else in town.  The prices are insanely cheap, too, and all proceeds benefit our wonderful library!  It's a win-win-win!  :D

Collage artists - you know how you start with a base, and then you just happen to find the PERFECT pieces for your new work right in front of your nose?  Well, that happened to me today!  It was like kismet, I tell ya, because right after I had dismantled the RDCB for my cover, I noticed this vintage German bag (from Present and Correct) staring at me:

Okay!  Now we're getting somewhere!  
After that I just found a couple of images from a vintage American Magazine, and I now have all the makings for my collage!  But wait....what if I SEWED some of those images?! 

 And what if I used some wording from this 1954 British handbook called "The Highway Code"  (also from Present and Correct - MUCH more on this little booklet later!), and SHAZAM!!!!  We're all set!

Here is the finished collage - I'm really happy with how it turned out!  Wish me luck - I entered it in an exhibit called "Juxtaposition: The Madness of Collage". Keep your fingers crossed that it gets chosen!  :D

Monday, February 4, 2013

Retro Home LOVE!

Isn't it funny how trends come and go?  I remember so clearly when Victorian homes - those lovely "Painted Ladies" - were all the rage about 20 years ago.  I recall thinking that this trend would NEVER go out of style, because really - we're never going to appreciate mid-century design, right?

Thankfully, WRONG!  :D  Mid-mod is back in fashion, and it has been for at least the last 5-8 years.  Deep down, I know that this trend will also subside, but I hope it stays with us for a good long while.  In reality, I don't think it's hit its apex yet, which makes me happy.

In a way, I can thank this trend for my full-time art career - indeed, it was creating mid-mod collages for my friend Pam Kueber at Retro Renovation that allowed me to pursue my art as a career in the first place!

Some of you may remember the post I did last January about my first-ever Retro Renovation collage - well, I still love those mid-mod homes and started a new series this weekend:

I call it "Living on the Grid" and I have plans to create many more of these, in all different colors.  :) I got a sewing machine about a month ago and I'm having a BLAST using it with my collages!  I'm also a huge fan of that vintage graphic tape, so I made sure I used it here.  I wanted to create a collage with clean lines and lots of white space.

I have all sorts of house designs from which to choose, too!  There's something so comforting about this house design - whereas the Victorian was very stately and proper, these homes allude to a front yard full of kids, a backyard patio and a TV with rabbit ears.  At least, that's what I get out of it.  :)