Sunday, May 15, 2016

Boro Boro Bag

Learning more about Japanese traditions with Jody Alexander this past Saturday at A Verb for Keeping Warm in Oakland. (store sells fabric, yarn, dying supplies and gives workshops)

Boro means tattered or rags. It is having a renaissance as a contemporary design element.
Check out a discussion about this on, with Yoshiko Wada and Kim Schufftan, explaining this art form.

It was a patchwork style, using sashiko stitching, to save articles of clothing, bedding, and bags to reuse parts and pieces from worn pieces of clothing to save others and make something else. What is considered beautiful today was one time shameful in Japan, because only the very poor did this. Most that we find today are from indigo dyed fabrics and denim.  However, even silk garments are found in the Boro style. Today it has become popular, and if found, are very expensive.

My Grandmother used to save things that she found beautiful, although maybe not useful any longer. She would say mottainai...sense of regret for being wasteful. This Japanese word was used in many ways but this is one I remember.

Modern designers are emulating the Boro style, as we did making these Boro Boro Bags with Jody. Jody studied the Tsuno Bukuro model (Horn Bag) and showed us how to make them, and all the types of stitching that were traditionally on Boro pieces. She provided us with a simple strip of cloth that we were to stitch as a sampler. (kimono pieces are traditionally 14" wide X 12 yards, so parts and pieces were used with this size in mind) My base piece was approximately a 13"X 36"strip.

Here is my bag:
One side of my Boro Bag. The base is a soft denim.

The opposite side of the bag. The patches are Japanese cotton prints.

Close up of some of the patchwork stitches and sashiko stitches. There is a slash with a jaoining stitch and a patch hole stitch. All stitches are simple and no embroidery style stitches are used.

Saturday, April 23, 2016

Workshop with Rebecca Wild

A wonderful weekend workshop with Rebecca Wild was sponsored by Friends of Calligraphy. Nature inspired, we made our 7"x7" pieces. Rebecca returned, from a few years ago, to share with us more techniques she uses for her art. It was a wonderful two days. Magic tape, Strathmore 700 paper, self stick clear shelving, Golden mat medium, acrylics and soft pastels were our main tools. (I must get Pan Pastels. I was able to use some of Rebecca's and loved the pigments) Here is the photo of the four I created. It is really wonderful that she had us make a portfolio, to keep our pieces for reference. These are our 'practice' pieces.
The portfolio is made with Canson MiTientes red with the last piece done with acrylics. The others were done, mainly with soft pastels.

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Calligraphy for Bethany Church

This was written for the church newsletter;
Rev. Sadie Stone is giving a sermon series based on the Seven Next Words of Christ found in the Gospels and written about by Shane Stanford in his book, “The Seven Next Words of Christ” published in 2006. The Worship Committee reviewed the scriptural passages and agreed that the Seven Next Words would be our worship focus following Easter until Pentecost. Dorothy Yuki, designer and artist, and a friend of Gloria Soliz’s has written out key words from the scriptures in calligraphy. Ms. Yuki’s artwork will help us reflect each week on one of the 7 phrases that will be framed on the large wooden cross in our worship center during Eastertide.

Here they are all together. Each strip is watercolored for the background and then script written. 3"X14" on watercolor paper.

with pen white ink

with Noodler's

with Noodler's ink

with gouache

with watercolor

with ink

ink and Finetec metallic

Monday, February 15, 2016

Letter's California Style 8 X 8 auction piece

Attending Letter's California Style is always a good experience.  This year I was invited to do a Serendipity folded bowl demonstration and to participate in an 8" X 8" piece to be auctioned as a fundraiser.
Here is my piece 8" X 8" piece in progress and finished. It sold well at $65.00.

cutting out each letter on Straithmore watercolor with xacto knife

laying a web of gold thread on Canson MiTientes

sewing gold thread to attach top cut piece to webbed back piece
Finished piece from a phrase I wrote last year; Sew a thread of golden words to weft and warp of a paper loom then stitch a yarn to weave a tapestry of your memories.

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Molding Paste Book

A wonderful workshop with Jacqueline Sullivan produced two books using her techniques of stenciling, painting and book making.  Here are two of my pieces produced with Golden's light molding past and acrylics. Her techniques of painting produces luminosity.
front cover of the first simple book

back cover of the first simple book

full cover of the next simple book

opened book with spine stitched and metal findings.  It was to appear as an embossed brass piece

front cover close-up
back cover close-up

sewn spine with button embellishment

Sunday, January 3, 2016

Journal group

Trying my best to be a part of a journaling group. With so many talented members, it is going to be a challenge. Knowing how I like to confront my fears, I completed my first prompt to choose a word of intention and make the first page with that word. My word I chose was JOURNEYS. This came from a line I wrote, Journeys await you in the land of letters that make the words that go together. Journeys was first Adventures but Gemma Black suggested I change it to Journeys. Thank you Gemma. Here are some photos with some preliminary sketches and the final piece for this week. We will be getting weekly prompts to continue the process of creativity and sharing with the group. I hope I can keep up.
I dreamt of my pen traveling along a path to create the letters of my word.  Some preliminary sketches.  I also used some gingko leaves to try and mimic letters..not so good.

This is the final piece on my first page of my journal. Format is 6.5" X 6.5", Arches Textwove, walnut ink, parallel pen.

Friday, August 7, 2015

The Passionate Pen International Calligraphy Conference

The fabulous conference took place at Sonoma State University in Rohnert Park, California, just an hour north of San Francisco. 489 participants took the campus over. Thirty three instructors taught one and four day classes. Marcia Friedman and Melissa Titone were the directors.  They chose a wonderful group of volunteers to get the job done.  I was the chair for the Goody Bags with Vicky Lee. I couldn't have done the job without Vicky. We were told it was the best Goody bag of all the past conferences.  I took a class from Gemma Black from Tasmania and Jane Dill of Mexico.  I had Jane for the one day class using Amate Mexican papers and Gemma for the four day class on Versals.  I loved them both. Here are a few photos from the week's event.

My room mates.
My 8"X8" Poppy entry donated to auction.
Ewan Clayton, one of my favorite teachers signing his book..coudn't find a table?
Gemma Black with students, Heidi and Jody.
Student work from Gemma's class

More work

and more work

we were prolific!

Jody, me, Larry and Janice all students from Gemma's class.
D O R O T H Y after Tutulus buriel seal
Sumi ink on grey...Gemma told us we would get tired of our phrase by the end of the class but we were to choose only one. This was from the book I wrote for my Grandchildren about reading.
The white ink on grey. I added the last part of the phrase to finish.

My pencil on black paper piece. This was the last finished one I did in the class.