Last week end I took two classes with Keith LoBue at Absolutely Everything in Topsfield, MA. What an amazing two days. I learned so much about construction. This represents liberation from adhesives, my first line of defense for almost everything I make. We used dremels, hand drills, saws and pliers. I even learned how to drill into glass. It has opened up a whole new world of possibilities ( or just added to my attention deficit disorder depending on how you view it).

I played with making jump rings and¬†links out of rebar wire. I also did an image transfer of my father’s passport photo, taken before we immigrated to the US, onto a small metal tag. These are my bits and pieces. I’m not sure how they will translate into a finished piece yet but the ideas are flying.

Dad and links

Dad and links

The Front Cover

The Front Cover

This spring I took a fabric painting class with Autumn Hathaway.

Every summer she makes a fabric journal for her family to share the experiences of their summer. Although I couldn’t take her journal course, she was very gracious about giving me advice on her technique and was even available to answer an email when I had a question.

I have made books before but not this particular style with the signatures sewn directly into the spine of the book. I worked non stop for two week ends and many week nights trying to finish the cover and get the inside pages decorated.

The sisters took a little convincing to get in the spirit of journaling our retreat. Once Gladys got going she was a power writer. Jad was slower to get started but by the end of the week, she was seeking “the book” out as well.

 

An inside page

An inside page

Here is one of the inside pages.

The photo is one I took last summer looking out my bedroom window of birds atop the cross at the Marie Joseph Spiritual Center. I did an image transfer onto a piece of muslin. The rest of the elements were collaged on and then pasted onto the page.

Jad was grateful for pages like these because it meant fewer surfaces needed to be journaled.

Keeping the journal added a whole new dimension to our trip. It also preserved memories in a way we could never have done by just trying to use the power of recall. This will be invaluable when we are all sitting around a winter table and someone challenges a memory. “Look, it’s right here in the book. Told you so!”