Thursday, February 11, 2010

Scumbling, altered books and ghosts

Greetings Everyone,
I have a little break from teaching classes this weekend which gave me some much needed time to hang out with my dogs, work on my altered books class and just generally try to keep warm and out of the rain. Yesterday morning I woke up bright and early with three stanzas of a poem fully formed in my head! I quickly grabbed my notebook and finished most of the poem then went back to sleep. Wierd. But here are a few lines of the poem which has now given me the direction for my new altered book:
Greetings fellow traveler, but why do you start?
Is it because you're alone and afraid of the dark?
The fog is thick and it's difficult to see,
Never fear I will guide you just follow me.
To this lonely lighthouse crumbling and forlorn,
Do you know what walks here in the midst of the storm?
Yes you've guessed it. Its about Ghosts. By the way Ghost Humters International was on San Lucas Island in Costa Rica last night. It was a prison island like Alcatraz and one spooky place. Its a place filled with bad memories and restless spirits.
Stay tuned for more on this altered book.
I also wanted to fill you in on a new technique that I've been skirting around the edges of for a very long time. Its called scumbling. Scumbling is a technique used to even out or soften the edges of a painted or photographed image by applying white gouache thinly with a dry brush. In this case I am altering vintage travel postcards by scumbling, collaging and then repainting the background to make the collaged images seem like part of the original postcard. I then add rubber stamping and ephemera like postage stamps and victorian scrap to complete the piece. This technique also has the effect of aging the entire piece. You can see some of my efforts above. What do you think?
If I can get enough vintage postcards I think this would make an awesome class. Like I said Ive been playing with this technique for a long time but using gesso in my Mystic Gesso class. I like using the gouche better because it stays open longer and you can work with the colors more. I have long wanted to alter vintage postcards and have been buying a few here and there specially for this purpose. I got the idea of combining the two from Maryjo and Sunny Koch's book called Vintage Collage-Works-artful ideas with Antique Ephemera. This is a wonderful book filled with great ideas particularly if your a hoarder of vintage ephemera.

1 comment:

Maria Ontiveros said...

Wow!! Connie, I love it when you make time for your own art. It always leads to interesting classes for us down the line.
Looking forward to scumbling with you,