Sunday, August 2, 2009

Home Again

I haven’t posted in a while because I haven’t done any creative work. In fact, I needed to get away from everything for a while. Since I’m still not healthy enough to travel, I took a virtual vacation. All I needed was my bed, lots of pillows for propping, and a set of rented DVDs (and a snack now and then).

I didn’t go anywhere adventurous or, on the surface, too exciting. Instead, I went to Wisteria Lane and met some interesting women: Bree, Susan, Lynette, Gabrielle, and Edie. I got to know their families, eavesdropped on their private lives, shared their secrets. I laughed with them, cried with them, and groaned and rolled my eyes when they did stupid things. It was the perfect escape, and exactly what I needed.

In all seriousness, I had never watched Desperate Housewives because I assumed it was a silly, shallow, prime-time soap opera. Silly on occasion and definitely soapy, yes, but I love that DP is anything but shallow. Characters are complex—there are no good guys in white hats or bad guys in black hats, because almost all the characters end up being like most of us humans: good and evil, caring and hateful, selfish and generous (sometimes all at the same time). Even more intriguing, the show illustrates over and over again how even our best efforts to control and manipulate situations, or to do the thing we think is the best thing, or to behave in ways that will benefit ourselves or others, don’t always turn out the way we think they will. In other words, the consequences of our actions are often impossible to predict, but on Wisteria Lane they make for some fascinating life situations, lessons, and entertainment.

I spent 4 years on Wisteria Lane (TV time is like dog years: in this case, 4 years—or 4 seasons—equaled about 2 weeks of real life), and I didn’t want to “come home.” I miss those women and their families, the daily joys and miseries and intrigues of their lives. On a positive note, I’m now so bored that I’ve forced myself out of bed for a while every day to work on something crafty.

(Btw, I’ll be visiting Wisteria Lane again in September, when the Season 5 DVD is available, and then I’ll be dropping in on those gals weekly for an hour or so throughout the season).

And now, on to those crafty somethings:

Results of gelatin printing, from Rayna Gillman’s book, Create Your Own Hand-Printed Cloth (as part of the A.R.T. Yahoo group’s workshop based on the book):




The last two pieces above were made by brayering paint onto the gelatin plate, then removing it with a potato masher (and, on the last piece, adding a piece of sequin waste).





I love the colors in the pieces above, but I’m not happy with the white fabric. I may go in and add color to those areas at some point. On the following pieces, I laid silk leaves over the brayered paint; on the last piece, I removed the leaves.




I have to admit that I've been stalling on this lesson for the A.R.T. workshop, but I was motivated to finally try gelatin printing by Frances Holliday Alford’s work on the cover of the latest issue of Quilting Arts. I had seen her gelatin prints before and have wanted to try the process ever since. I have a way to go before I produce anything as beautiful as Alford’s gelatin prints, but that gives me something to work toward.


Dotti said...

Looking at your prints makes me want to revisit monoprinting. Is there an advantage to using gelatin over say, a piece of plexiglass? I was really drawn to Alford's style also!

Donna said...

I'm glad your back and hope you feel better and better and better each day! Your gelatin prints are very cool. The same Quilting Arts article caught my attention and I may have to try some myself.

Awhile back you commented on my SFMM blog about my Mini Schnauzer's pancreatitis. Now my husband has had a bout of it. I had to take him to the ER Friday night a week ago, and that's what they diagnosed him with. He stayed in the hospital until Monday afternoon and they don't know what caused it.

I thought about you while he was in the hospital because I know you've been through a lot with it. I researched the subject on the internet to gain some insight but the experiences and information you've provided on your blog in the past is very helpful too. Thank you for posting about it. I hope it goes away and you never have to spend another day dealing with it!

Terri Stegmiller said...

Wow, you've got some great fabrics to play with there. Love the designs you did.

Dotti said...

I'm glad you're out of the closet on Desparate Housewives. The weekly show repeats in our area late Sunday nites at 11:30 pm. One Sunday nite I was wide awake and tuned in. OMG. I keep thinking: what will the writers think of next. Nuff said.

tiedyejudy said...

Welcome back! And great work on the gelatin prints... that has been on my list of things to try for sooooo long! I was inspired too by the QA article... just need to find the time!
Glad to hear you're giving yourself a break to rest and recuperate... love DH, too!

Anonymous said...

Great results! I like what you've done better than many gel prints I've seen done in the books and magazines. Thank you for sharing.

Lynn said...

I just completed a wall hanging like the one in Quilting Arts mag by Alford. I did one set of 12 mono prints using the gelatin plate and another dozen or so using the bottom of the bowl itself. both worked fine.
Next time I'll save money on gelatin and just use the bowl! LOL