Monday, June 19, 2017

Getting excited about this Kyoto book

Yesterday was spent clearing the decks, organizing the papers, cutting the book pages to size, and trimming other papers so they'll go through the printer.

I also spent a lot of time selecting pictures, printing them onto the special paper, to be torn, stained, dyed, and perhaps painted. Won't know until I begin creating each page.

The concept is this:

Japanese stab binding, book size 12" wide by 4.5" high, unknown number of pages, and each page will be a physical, handmade collage, incorporating one or more photos.

Today I have one more big stack of papers to go through, pile up, and be ready to use.

Chris cut all the pages yesterday -- so cool to have a stack of them (more than 30) all ready to begin working on, probably three at a time, as I create the collages. 

Ink will be splattered. Mistakes will be made. Paint will be applied. Glue will spill. All my Japanese hankos (signature "chops") will come into play. Postage stamps, maybe some origami papers, bits of specially created gel prints will be applied, etc. Now that the technical problems are behind me, the real fun begins.

At least, that's the theory!

©Carol Leigh
All text, photographs, and other media are ©Copyright Carol Leigh (or others when indicated) and are not in the public domain and may not be used on websites, blogs, or in other media without advance permission from Carol Leigh.



Saturday, June 17, 2017

It all begins now . . .




I've solved the printer/ink/paper problems and am now ready to begin printing the images for my handmade book.

I took a couple shots of what my photo "fails" look like (although seeing them here, they do look kinda cool!).

And then there are a couple of photos showing what else is on my studio counter.

It's now time to clear the decks, begin cutting paper to size, to print a bunch of pictures, and then create the pages.

Each page will be a collage of sorts that features one or more photographs embedded into the paper. Stains, tears, smudges, patterns, postage stamps, etc. are some of the things I'll be incorporating into the mix.

Let the games begin!

©Carol Leigh
All text, photographs, and other media are ©Copyright Carol Leigh (or others when indicated) and are not in the public domain and may not be used on websites, blogs, or in other media without advance permission from Carol Leigh.

Friday, June 16, 2017

Waiting . . .

Various printers, papers, techniques aren't coming together well right now regarding my handmade book.

My Epson Stylus Photo died. So I replaced it with a Canon Pro-100. The rice paper I want to use in it won't feed. I tried a variety of techniques and finally got it to work. Hooray.

But the Canon inks are different. They don't play well with the various techniques I was hoping to use to stain and blend into the papers I'm creating for the book. Very weird and ugly colors have been the result.

So I switched over to my HP LaserJet printer. Which prints black and white. No problem, since I'm going to be staining the pictures anyway. But the paper won't feed. The resulting paper jams caused the printer clutch to disengage and horrible grinding sounds ensued. Chris, being mechanically inclined (versus me, who can't even figure out how to use a can opener), fixed it.

So now what? I'm thinking that maybe the brand of rice paper I'm using could be the issue. So I've ordered a package of a brand I used a couple of years ago, and it arrives this weekend.

The result has been a lot of downtime, time away from creating this #$%@&* wonderful book. So I've been making and uploading more images to Fine Art America, playing around with my Lensbaby (version 2.0 -- quite old, but the new ones are quite expensive), and experimenting more with black and white photography.

These peonies were taken with the Lensbaby and then converted to black and white using Nik Silver Efex 2. No clue what I'm doing, but that's okay . . . I'm learning. If nothing else, I'm learning patience!

©Carol Leigh
All text, photographs, and other media are ©Copyright Carol Leigh (or others when indicated) and are not in the public domain and may not be used on websites, blogs, or in other media without advance permission from Carol Leigh.

Saturday, June 10, 2017

Green Acres is the place to be . . .

All of a sudden this week we “have” chickens. They’re not ours. They belong to a nearby neighbor. But they apparently like to go on walkabouts and this week they’ve been showing up at our place. It’s kind of cool for this urban/suburban gal to see a more “country” side of life.

This morning the rooster showed up with six hens — fine-looking chickens. So I went out, sat nearby, and took some photographs. This shot of the rooster shows how colorful, vain, and assertive he is. Messy birds, though! Oh, my gosh! Until we get some rain, we’re going to be very careful about where we walk . . .

©Carol Leigh
All text, photographs, and other media are ©Copyright Carol Leigh (or others when indicated) and are not in the public domain and may not be used on websites, blogs, or in other media without advance permission from Carol Leigh.

 

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Take your time . . .


"The whole culture is telling you to hurry, while the art tells you to take your time. Always listen to the art." --Junot Diaz, Dominican American writer.

Photographed 2004 in Bandon, Oregon with my first digital SLR. Processed June 4, 2017. Finally!


©Carol Leigh
All text, photographs, and other media are ©Copyright Carol Leigh (or others when indicated) and are not in the public domain and may not be used on websites, blogs, or in other media without advance permission from Carol Leigh.

Monday, June 5, 2017

I was fooled . . .


I was fooled. I thought the bunny was playing, chasing mom rabbit.

Then I became aware of the robins and their distress calls.

That's when I knew the rabbits weren't playing. And that's when the owl landed on the branch.

All turned out well (except for the owl). The rabbits remained hidden and uneaten. The owl got cranky with my being there, messing up her hunting routine, and left.

What surprised me was the second photo, where I wondered if the flash on my camera could reach high up into the tree. Spoooooooky, no?

Both shots are sub-mediocre, but the experience was a good one. The story a good one. And who knew the flash could extend up so high and create such a humorously wacko image?

©Carol Leigh
All text, photographs, and other media are ©Copyright Carol Leigh (or others when indicated) and are not in the public domain and may not be used on websites, blogs, or in other media without advance permission from Carol Leigh.



Saturday, June 3, 2017

Studio bits






Thought you might like to see bits and pieces of the studio, my work environment.

A rusty muffin tin filled with tiny treasures I've found on walks along the Oregon coast as well as in my yard is a good place to sort of display/drop things off.

The heart-shaped muffin forms contain pebbles, acorns, wasp nests (shiver), a bird skull, crab shells, oak galls, owl pellets, and more. My most recent two finds are the sky blue robin eggshell and the long-beaked bird skull (perhaps a woodpecker).

On my work counter I usually tape down a sheet of brown kraft paper to protect the counter and to test out paints, inks, techniques, etc., and it ends up getting pretty messy as I work on other things. This paper never gets thrown away! When it gets "full," I pull it off the counter, cut it up, and use it as maybe a collage "base," or postcards, or envelopes.

It kinda bugs me that, more often than not, the messy protective kraft paper proves more interesting than some of the art I produce. Here you see a few close-ups of that most recent sheet.

The printer got hooked up yesterday evening. It's a monster. So now onto the Kyoto book. Finally!

©Carol Leigh
All text, photographs, and other media are ©Copyright Carol Leigh (or others when indicated) and are not in the public domain and may not be used on websites, blogs, or in other media without advance permission from Carol Leigh.

Friday, June 2, 2017

What I'm working on . . .


A friend of mine is under the weather, so I made her a postcard collage as well as an envelope in which to send it. Made with lots of glue, ink, and torn papers, things laying around on studio counters and tables and in boxes.

Papers of all sizes and types fill the studio right now, and below is a stack of some of them. Not only do I like how they look, but they sound great! So crinkly and crackly. Combine their sounds with their textures and it's a very sensory experience.

I should do a quickie video so you can see and hear how they look and how they sound. Some things are just made to be touched. And heard.

©Carol Leigh
All text, photographs, and other media are ©Copyright Carol Leigh (or others when indicated) and are not in the public domain and may not be used on websites, blogs, or in other media without advance permission from Carol Leigh.

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Latest work: Summer Thrush

This is definitely not a typical bird “identification” image since I’ve changed the colors and the look completely of a thrush I photographed in Cambridge, England. I rather like the feeling of warm, bright sunlight and the touch of blue I created along the wing.
 
©Carol Leigh
All text, photographs, and other media are ©Copyright Carol Leigh (or others when indicated) and are not in the public domain and may not be used on websites, blogs, or in other media without advance permission from Carol Leigh.

Monday, May 29, 2017

Uh-oh . . .


Hide the bunnies!

A glimpse of movement, something large this morning. A barred owl lands on a pine tree branch, much to the dismay of five or six robins. And a hummingbird. Hummingbirds ALWAYS check out the owls!

©Carol Leigh
All text, photographs, and other media are ©Copyright Carol Leigh (or others when indicated) and are not in the public domain and may not be used on websites, blogs, or in other media without advance permission from Carol Leigh.