Wednesday, December 16, 2009

"flower for eyes"

Never try to repeat a success! I botched this painting of a white poinsettia early on and so just kept adding colors to see if I could get anywhere with it ... The subtlety of the white--creamy, tinged with green--was too elusive.

Here's one of the folding books I made--takes about 5 minutes: fold a 22x30 sheet of watercolor into quarters lengthwise, and tear along the folds so you have 4 long strips, 5.5x30. Take one strip and fold it in half; fold the halves in half; then fold those halves in half. Unfold and refold in an accordian pleat. You'll have eight 3.75x5.5 panels. Attach some thicker paper to the ends for a cover: I used handmade watercolor paper.
You could glue or tape a ribbon or string between the end paper and the cover if you want something to tie the book closed with ... (I'll probably just use a rubber band!)

I'm going to give this one to Peter. He took his mom and dad and sister and her daughter, Quanah, to Florida the spring before his mother died; I couldn't go but gave Quanah some painting stuff. Peter suggested they each paint a palm tree. The results were really delightful
and fascinating. I had them all framed together for Mother's Day, Pat's last. I'll have to get a photo of it next time I'm at Peter's father's house; it's hanging in the kitchen.

Thanks for all your comments on yesterday's post: there were some great ideas in there!
Yesterday's book was based on instructions I found on Wet Canvas by Rosemarie Lutken. Her directions are very clear and easy to follow ... I "improvised" a bit because I didn't have some of the things she used on hand; and I decided to add beads because they're on some handmade books I have by a woman I took a workshop with once: we made three different types of books in one afternoon; it was one of the most satisfying experiences I've ever had!

And for no reason except that I liked it, maybe it was the winds last night, a poem I read this morning:

"Just Enough" by Nanao Sakaki

Soil for legs
Axe for hands
Flower for eyes
Bird for ears
Mushroom for nose
Smile for mouth
Songs for lungs
Sweat for skin
Wind for mind

Just got this link in an email from how to make your own chapbook!
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Anonymous said...

The colors are still very subtle and the overall result is very appealing. Have a wonderful holiday. Hope to see some painting results.

caseytoussaint said...

I quite like your poinsettia - even if that's not what you were aiming at. I wish they existed in those colors.

A Brush with Color said...

Lovely post--I like your pointsetta, too, Laura--it's delicate and fresh and I love your palette, as always. The poem is beautiful.

Anonymous said...


Barbara M. said...

Hi Laura,

Love the painting and the poem, and am impressed by your book making. I should have taken something like that with me to Florence. Oh well.

Have a super trip.

Take care,



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