Heeey, how’ve you been? Busy? Have you made anything over the past couple of months? I haven’t done as much as I would’ve liked, but I made a few things. I have so much catching up to do here! Just thinking about the job at hand paralyzes me. So I’ll start small and just show you what I made TODAY.
It was a pretty good day, in spite of the stifling, humid weather…I stripped down to my undies, poured big tumblers of ice cubes and water, and spent the day playing with something I got the idea for months ago:
You know that “Prints and Patterns” hoard that you started when you were 16 and that now takes up two filing cabinets and 8 boxes? All the designs you loved and saved—out of magazines or photocopied books, traced, photographed, clipped from wallpaper samples, taken off the net and printed on bond—yeah, THAT hoard, the Tossed Pattern Salad from Hades. Haven’t you always wanted to gather those designs together in a way that was both useful as a reference later on, and beautiful to look at? I have always wanted to transfer all those designs into one big book of patterns that I love.
No, I’m not going to aim for that control-freak’s archive, I’d never get through it all! But I did spend my afternoon copying one little fragment of a pattern…then a second little fragment—
just doodling, no pressure or real purpose, freehand and using a black marker straight away…no pencil lines, no measuring or erasing…not trying very hard to be accurate or faithful to the original, letting my moods and thoughts find their way into the process
—onto the slightly yellowed pages of a large old Cambridge Italian Dictionary (found on a rubbish pile in the city!), and then coloring the pages, using the exercise as a way to explore new color palettes…kind of like hand-drawing your own coloring book,before you do any coloring.
You know what? I love it. I love the look of the pages, the fragmented patterns and the wonky lines, the oversized, outlandish flowers blooming across the words. Quite by accident the first page I decorated this way started with the word abbell·ire tr. to embellish; to beautify; to adorn; to gild…