Saturday, May 31, 2008

Yellow Paper

I love old paper with that lovely aged patina, brittle feel and the dog-eared corners. It seems to hide such great stories and adventures. I fell in love with collage and old papers when the Surrealist exhibition hit town when I was 16 – I loved it! And, despite the entry cost, I went many, many times. My favourites were Kurt Schwitters, Max Ernst, Joseph Cornell and Picasso – I loved their collages and, most of all, I loved the wonderful old paper they used!

Kurt Schwitters, Aphorism 1923, Joseph Cornell Untitled (American Rabbit), c. 1945-46, Max Ernst Listonosz Cheval 1932.

I wonder, though, whether these works would’ve looked so ‘delicious’ on the day they were made? The paper would not have had that yellowed, old-fashioned look … and they would’ve been made with contemporary bits of ephemera that people were familiar with. I wonder whether most of my love of these collages comes because of their age and nostalgic sense. It’s true that you can’t artificially ‘age’ a piece of paper or other ephemera so that it looks authentic (all through my uni days I tried … and tried!) – you just have to wait, be patient and collect the little treasures as they come your way!

I have a gorgeous little hard-covered sketch book that a dear friend gave me that I have done quite a few little collages in. Here’s one I made recently using and old National Geographic image, a little playing card and a bit of Chinese joss paper … it doesn’t yet have that lovely nostalgic yellow ... maybe in a few decades?!

Thursday, May 29, 2008

New Things

Welcome to my blog :)
As well as my new blog 'Charlie and Grace', here are some other new things I’ve been making this week.

As part of my ‘Retro Ladies’, I’ve made these little brooches and rings. I love flipping through vintage women’s magazines and going back in time, having a laugh and finding little treasures! I found some particularly tiny treasures and decided to put them on rings ... while these are essentially paper rings, and not very practical, the images are fun!

This brooch is a pretty 60s lady. I used a page from an old novel and highlighted the words "I was thinking" - I think it suits her picture, don't you?!

As I'm hoping to sell these brooches and rings, either in my etsy shop or at local markets, I decided to make myself a brooch too. I used this gorgeous scrap of fabric - she's such a 1950s sweetie, reminds me of my mum as a little girl with curls :)

The magazines I use for my collage work are usually damaged with ripped covers or water-stained so I don’t feel so bad cutting them up. I do have a small stash of magazines in better condition that I keep away from the scissors (some even have the original sewing patterns still included … and one of these days I’d love to give one a go!).