Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Circles of Motherhood


To my mothering friends, to Roland, to the baby with the secret name, & to Lilian/Hunter:

Now That I Am Forever With Child by Audre Lorde

How the days went
while you were blooming within me
I remember each upon each -
the swelling changed the planes of my body
and how you first fluttered, then jumped
and I thought it was my heart

How the days wound down
and the turning of winter
I recall, with you growing heavy
against the wind. I thought
now her hands
are formed, and her hair
has started to curl
now her teeth are done
now she sneezes.
Then the seed opened
I bore you one morning just before spring
My head rang like a fiery piston
my legs were towers between which
A new world was passing.

Since then
I can only distinguish
one thread within running hours
You, flowing through selves
toward You.

I painted this motif of circles for a friend and the baby with the secret name. With it, I hope to give the child the gift of color.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Primavera Approaching

If it had no pencil,
Would it try mine -
Worn - now - and dull - sweet,
Writing much to thee.
If it had no word -
Would it make the Daisy,
Most as big as I was -
When it plucked me?
Emily Dickinson

This address book was inspired by the poetry of Emily Dickinson. Her verses are throughout on each dividing page along with hand painted letters in alternating colors of pink and green. The colors echo a spring garden, a most loyal companion of Miss Dickinson. This hardcover address book is hand stitched and bound, covered with a cloth napkin with a bamboo pattern, green leather, ribbon, and buttons. The end papers are a light green hand-laid paper (not by me, however).

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Around the World in a Cigar Box

This box makes use of maps & travel ephemera. It includes a leather bound journal, pencils, sharpener, glue, various international postage stamps, & various other travel ephemera & craft paper for the owner to use in the journal. Maps, wallpaper, tissue paper, buttons, lace, & rubber stamping/embossing. Metal clasp closure added.

A Natural Affinity

This box was commissioned for a lover of nature who spends a lot of time photographing the splendor around her. Some of her photos were provided for me to use: the deer photo on the cover & the landscape as the interior background. Also, a verse of one of her favorite poems was used: two deer came walking down the hill and when they saw me they said to each other, okay, this one is okay - Mary Oliver. I used these elements & natural textures & colors to create a pleasing & functional box. The contents include a leather bound journal & pen, a magnifying glass, a glue stick, a glass tube for found objects, & a small sliding drawer [a matchbox] for found objects - feathers, stones, or iridescent insect wings. Leather, brown rice paper, distressing with ink, gold ink, wooden cigar box.

Juicy Green Fruit of my Labor

The very first book I made completely. After tearing and folding the paper (laid paper and watercolor paper) I stitched the signatures together. I bound and covered the book in a deep green leather. The diamond-shaped window displays a pattern from Italian writing paper. Ribbon and metal hardware create the closure. I've yet to write in this one lest it should lose some of its majesty.

Ode the the Gothic Arch

This was the first book that I vandalized, ripped apart, and put back together. I would come to love this destruction and rebirth. In fact, I loved it right away. From this book, I learned the construction of a book. In its past life, this was a plain journal. I used a light blue/gray leather to recover it. The window displays an old map of Paris, ink embellishments, a wax seal, photocopy of seal from the Sorbonne, and the words in French: Love, yesterday, today, tomorrow. Quite appropriately, the first "window" I made in a book was Gothic arched. I love them. No squares for me.