After so much work, I finally have something to show for myself and something to share with you today.
A couple of years ago, I got a grant from NYS for a project that I was working on that involved creating collages, taking photographs and making movies inspired by a town near where I live. Sharon Springs was a booming town in Victorian times. There are several mineral springs located in the town, and back in time bathing in medicinal waters was en vogue. Beautiful and elaborate buildings were erected to house the throngs of people that came upstate to vacation and soothe their souls in the healing springs. This type of therapy has long lost favor, and the town has been left to decay away into history. Recently a Korean firm purchased half of the ailing buildings with plans to put Sharon Springs back on the map again by renovating the buildings and opening them to tours of people of mostly Asian descent who still enjoy therapeutic benefit from mineral springs. I don't think the local folk are quite convinced that this is a good thing, however, and I think that they are butting heads with the new owners. So far, the new owners have done nothing to any of the buildings, except for the addition of new posted signs in places that were traditionally open to the public. This makes my project even more interesting, since you can no longer legally get into these spaces.

One of the facets of this project was a website to house all of the components. I have had 2 years to hash out in my mind 1oo ways to present the material. I even paid for 2 years of web hosting and web housing before I could make up my mind on how best to do it. My conclusion? Just plunge in and DO IT already! Most of the problems seem to exist within me, as go back and forth deciding how I want it to be. Conflicted, it took me awhile to progress.
The main menus were my first battle and I ended up doing a piece of artwork to use just for this purpose. There was so much written about Sharon Springs in it's heyday, so I chose several vintage quotes to use on the menu pages and cited their sources. I am not certain I like them the way they are just plunked on top of the page. I may go back and change this. (Do you have an opinion about them? Feel free to comment!)
The backgrounds for the artwork pages became my next quest. I decided to use fabrics, old texts and patterns. These came out okay, and I am pleased with the resulting virtual frames. Next will be the photos. I have a bazillion photos and it's going to take me awhile just to cull out the best ones that should post online. An artists' work is never done, right???
Do take a poke around the site if you get a chance. So far, only the artwork is posted. Each menu is open, but you will find only the artwork links are live for now.
For me, it's ONWARD to the photo sorting party!


The Silence!

I know, it's been a silent blog for a couple of weeks. That doesn't mean that collage thoughts are not happening in the background or that projects are not coming to fruition!

Recently I posted a bunch of collages done on Yupo that were celestially themed for Cecils Bakers Dozen. I have taken these works and decided to create a book from them. I am working towards publishing on Blurb. I had purchased a book from my friend Aya on Louchelab, and it was really sweet quality. Altho I have printed on laser several times and created a bunch of small independent books, I am interested in a more professional look for my work. The Blurb format seems to be a nice match. There are a few choices for sizes...and this was helpful since I had not designed the book for Blurb specifically.

The project has required a lot of computer time. I had to scan all the artwork and retouch them in Photoshop. All the little dusts and scratchies, the little blobs of ink or glue that hit the scanner bed and stuck there, any stray cat hairs from Latrina-the toilet-kitty, this all had to be removed. I had to spend some time thinking, (Horrors!) to come up with suitable captions for the text. None of this seemed bloggable. Yet it has been work! The next phase is creating the book in the Booksmart software that Blurb provides. It's easy to do, I just want to play perfectionist on the layout. I want to use interesting typography. These things take time.

The other task that has me going crazy is a website I am working on. I received a grant a couple of years ago and was able to do a large body of work. I have procured a website and I am loading it with all of the content. This is also a computer heavy job. There's so many hours spent designing pages, coding flash, composing movies. It's labor intensive! But it isn't too bloggable. At least, not for now!

I am eager to get off of the computer and back to the studio. For me, that's where the fun is! The discipline that is required to keep on track seems to be good personal medicine, I admit. It's not my strong point and probably never will be. Focus is something I have for a little while, until I am distracted! The website has been in the works for 2 years. It's really long overdue that I complete things. But when my free time is so sparse...I end up always choosing hands on creation vs. computer creation. It's a battle.

So here is The Silence. This moment when my blog is still and nothing appears to be happening. Then all of a sudden, there's going to be a virtual (no pun intended!) flood of graphic imagery, interactive pieces, and a book to feast on.

___A place to find all kinds of information about collage.