August 31, 2015
Help! My daughter is off at college and is happy and excited. I thought all was going well until she told me that in one of her classes they are making collages, and they have been instructed to use rubber cement !!!! I am mortified. I forbid her from using it. And then she told me that it’s part of her art kit and everyone is using it. Of course I instructed her to just Google “rubber cement” and I was sure she would be clued into the abyss of misinformation that she had fallen into, but GUESS WHAT, there are all sorts of people on the web that are actually recommending using rubber cement for collage. OMG this is more dire that I could have imagined.
Before I knew better I used rubber cement. I used it for years on other projects as well. I fondly remember a kaleidoscope I made and decorated for my friend Hank: It was a beautiful object that I poured my heart into, but the glue I used was rubber cement, and within a few years the paper embellishments simply fell off. I know that rubber cement is acidic (will discolor paper), not permanent, and toxic, but, hey, if everyone is using it how can I compete with that?
I am asking all of my friend, followers, and casual blog visitors to weigh in on this. I need to send an unmistakable message to my daughter about her choice of adhesives.
FYI, I am sending her, via her Amazon prime account, a photo safe glue stick, some PVA, Beacon Zip Dry Paper Glue, (which I haven’t tried out yet myself), a container of mod podge, and some small bone folders.
I’ve also sent her these links;
- Sonja Alves, who is one of the few voices that support my view and wrote a great post on glues http://whuffling.com/2012/02/09/collage-tutorial-the-gospel-of-glue/
Nancy Egol Nikkal, who wrote a really lovely tutorial on doing collages
Please, speak up! Comment on the idea of using rubber cement as an adhesive for art projects, and make a recommendation. Even if you find that you will repeat what someone else has said, remember there is strength in numbers and right now the rubber-cementers are everywhere!
Addendum: Beatrice Coron just sent me this very cool link that offers glue advice and info /http://www.thistothat.com/
August 8, 2015
August 4, 2015
My workshop in making designs with lines and circles attracted a good number of people last month. I wrote about the first class already, and here’s my wrap-up post, which is a few weeks late, but, hey, it’s summertime and my children are home.
The most wonderful and surprising aspect of the class was not only the number but the age range of the participants! In fact, the class attracted ‘tweens through adults, and since this way of working was new to everyone, the group felt cohesive.
At this second class there were a number of people who were coming for the first time, so with them, we started off creating intersecting circles to create the six-petal pattern that I had introduced to the group last time. People colored them in according to their own style.
I love the range of styles that I saw. Some of the work was bright and bawdy.
Some of the pieces were dreamy and meditative.
Some pieces were cheerful and carefully considered.
For people who wanted to go just a step beyond the six-petals, I showed them how to transform the six into twelve petals.
Okay, I know that the image above is hard to see, but, actually, that’s the point. This is what I handed out to people who were ready to move on to a more complex set of shapes. While I worked with the newcomers, I asked the rest of the group to look at this page and start finding shapes that they might like to highlight in their own pieces. That, after all, is one of the coolest things about this way of creating designs: there are an infinite number of individual responses to the same underlying architecture.
Something surprising happened. Some people were happy to use the PDF that I handed them, and to color that in. The point of the class (I thought) was to show people how to create the shapes for themselves, but not everyone wanted to do that.
It’s fascinating to me to see what unexpected things people do in classes. The fact that there was a group that happily and prolifically just colored was fun to see.
There was also a group who was very interested in learning how to make the underlying designs for themselves.
I didn’t end up taking many photos during the third class that I taught. It turns out that what I brought in was way challenging, and I spent most of the class focused on helping people be successful. What happened? The first class I showed a six-pointed star (or six-petal) design, the second class I showed an eight-pointed star design, so for the last class it seemed logical to me to show a five-point star design. Making a five-pointed star design turned out to be much more difficult for people.
One of the highlights of the class was showing people a site that turned their work into hyperbolic tiles.
If you don’t know what a hyperbolic tile is, well, it doesn’t matter. Just upload an image into the site and hit the “generate tiling” tab. Within days of showing this to people, I started see hyperbolic tilings show up in my FB feed.
All told, the three workshops were just wonderful to share with the people in my community.
Here are the links that I found useful for these workshops
Dearing Wang’s HOW 2 Draw Tesseract – Octagram Into Infinity https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CqnH1y1HpF8
to make a Hyperbolic Tile http://www.malinc.se/m/ImageTiling.php
August 1, 2015
I wasn’t able to get to writing a regular post this week, but this Weekend-Bookend post is something that I can get to.
“I’m going to try out posting a Weekend-Bookend image each weekend which will be sort of like a snap shot of something from my studio. These posts will be images my handmade books, drawings, details of drawings or some paper engineering that I want to show, accompanied by just a small bit of writing.”