“We Right The Book” IV

“We Right The Book” IV
Making Scrolls…The Book That Rolls…

I am honored to serve as Artist in Residence at Verdugo Hill High School in Tujunga,  CA (Los Angeles) for a group of 42 Senior English class Visual and Performing Arts (VAPA) students.

Our project is entitled, “We Right the Book“, and is supported by an Artist in residence grant from the City of Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs.  I am working with the students on a series of bookmaking projects during weekly workshops held right in the classroom from September – December, 2017. The students are also assisting with bookmaking workshops held for the community at-large in the Sunland-Tujunga Branch of the Los Angeles Public Library.

The project is designed to offer participating students an outlet for feelings, thoughts, hopes and dreams related to their upcoming transition out of high school, and into the next epoch of their lives.

We started with the basics: Accordion Fold Books, created from folding equidistant sections of material.    We moved from there to the fun, kinetic and versatile Flag Book Structure, then on to theatre-like Tunnel Books.

To change it up, we then created scrolls…the ancient, original portable (as opposed to stories written on cave walls…) books and rolled either horizontally or vertically. We attached bright tagboard sheets to wooden dowels, marbleized our own paper and used it, as well as other collage materials, rubber stamping, hole punched designs and more to our pieces. The results were….beautiful.

Summer dreaming?

Focussed, and private.

She punched out the star shapes from black paper, and glued them on…and it looks like we are seeing through to the night sky…

Beautiful use of framing the marbled paper…

“Winter Wonderland”…no matter that we are in Southern California…imagination rules!

“Never stop doing what you love….”

Another use of black framing…

This is the secret note of encouragement...”   what an inspiring proclamation…

This is what it is all about.

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“We Right The Book” II

“We Right The Book” II

I am honored to serve as Artist in Residence at Verdugo Hill High School in Tujunga,  CA (Los Angeles) for a group of 42 Senior English class Visual and Performing Arts (VAPA) students.

Our project is entitled, “We Right the Book“, and is supported by an Artist in residence grant from the City of Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs.  I am working with the students on a series of bookmaking projects during weekly workshops held right in the classroom from September – December, 2017. The students are also assisting with bookmaking workshops held for the community at-large in the Sunland-Tujunga Branch of the Los Angeles Public Library.

The project is designed to offer participating students an outlet for feelings, thoughts, hopes and dreams related to their upcoming transition out of high school, and into the next epoch of their lives.

We started with the basics: Accordion Fold Books, created from folding equidistant sections of material. We used “bright tagboard” for the folded pages, and assorted posterboard and railroad board for the covers.   We moved from their to the fun, kinetic and versatile Flag Book Structure, invented by renowned book artist Hedi Kyle.

 

“Ascend Descend”

“Do The Impossible”

The “ascent” of “Ascend Descend”

FOCUS

Visual and Performing Arts (VAPA) Magnet English teacher Amy Leserman joins in the flag bookmaking.

Stay tuned to learn how students from our bookmaking program took their knowledge to the community, assisting in a well-attended bookmaking class for children and youth held at the nearby Sunland-Tujunga Branch Library.

It was beautiful to see.

“We Right The Book” I

“We Right The Book” I

I am honored to serve as Artist in Residence at Verdugo Hill High School in Tujunga,  CA (Los Angeles) for a group of 42 Senior English class Visual and Performing Arts (VAPA) students.

Our project is entitled, “We Right the Book“, and is supported by an Artist in residence grant from the City of Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs.  I am working with the students on a series of bookmaking projects during weekly workshops held right in the classroom from September – December, 2017. The students are also assisting with bookmaking workshops held for the community at-large in the Sunland-Tujunga Branch of the Los Angeles Public Library.

The project is designed to offer participating students an outlet for feelings, thoughts, hopes and dreams related to their upcoming transition out of high school, and into the next epoch of their lives.

We started with the basics: Accordion Fold Books, created from folding equidistant sections of material. We used “bright tagboard” for the folded pages, and assorted posterboard and railroad board for the covers.

An industrious maker adds tiny butterflies to the cover of her book.

A writer!

Tiny pieces of text work together to form the title…the piece is held closed with hemp cord.

Choosing a length of cord to enhance book.

Angelica layers materials into her folded page.

We have a wonderful group of boys in the class…talented and detailed makers!

Two girls work together (upper left of image)  making the most of materials, space and each other!

Working with letters, and seeing/absorbing their visual quality.

He is able to let others into his world through the book.

Paper world…

Our wonderful VAPA English classroom teacher, Amy Leserman.

 

Now that we have learned the basics of accordion folding, it is time to move into the fun and versatile Flag Book structure!
Stay tuned for “We Right The Book” II

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mask Magic 2

Mask Magic 2

At a building owned by the Community Corporation of Santa Monica (CCSM), I conducted a two-part mask making workshop! Families who rented units in the building attended, with children, spouses, and neighbors.

webcThe work created is breathtaking, and was shown last Friday November 4th at an exhibition entitled,
The Artists Among Us“.

Here is this chapter of their story.

webiDuring the first workshop, participants learned to pound out slabs of air-dry clay, create an “armature” with newspaper to give their masks depth, and form their clay slabs over the armature.

weblThe following week, participants used acrylic paints to add color, visual texture, design and pattern to their masks and other clay items, and also enjoyed painting on thick watercolor paper. As acrylic paints dry quickly, and are no longer water-soluble once dry, the artists were able to continue to add paint, details and layers.

web1Reveling in color and brush work, this young artist filled her surface with exploration.

webaI did not see this couple enter the room, and suddenly there they were, painting with complete concentration.

webbParticipant interaction makes the whole experience the more rich.

webdEach got their own palette of colors on a Styrofoam plate, with empty plates available for mixing and discovering colors.

webeGreen grass with delicate characters above.  She must love purple. Maybe she will add it later to her painting!

webfFocused artist and craftswoman.

webgAdding detail.  Every brush I brought seemed to have been used!

webhShe seems to know exactly what she wants to paint, as if the vision was already inside her head.

webnEnergetic color, imagery, brush strokes and composition create movement in this piece.

webvA lion happened on this plate!  Painting? Mask? Both?!

webzHe said it was his first time painting…he must be a natural. What talent!

Many thanks to the marvelous and devoted  Rene Melara, programmer extraordinaire, for the opportunity to work with these wonderful participants, and see their artwork blossom.

Bravo!

Mock-ups and Murals…

Mock-ups and Murals…

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It was great fun to teach a “mock-up to mural painting” program at the Montana Branch Library in Santa Monica this past Saturday.

We called it a

MONTANAmuralwkshp06_2016

and attendees looked at a number of my live and in-person mock-ups (to-scale miniatures of planned murals), and images on my site of the finished murals.

Artifactory Studio

Artifactory Studio

Oshun Center

Artifactory StudioArtifactory Studio

Planning for Elders in the Central City

Artifactory Studio

Artifactory Studio

Exterior Mural done on fence 2 stories up, seen through kitchen window.

Artifactory Studio

Artifactory Studio

Garden mural done on patio fence.

l

Artifactory Studio

Living Room Wall Mural

We talked color, scale, technique, and then they painted their own mock-ups on project display boards. Big Fun!

The results were magnificent.

Each participant expressed her own style, color personality, and visual story.

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WEB6What a privilege to work with these artists, and watch them express themselves in paint, color, line shape and imagery.

Gratitudes!

Wave your Flag!: Teens Create Flag Books in Honor of The Big Read

Wave your Flag!: Teens Create Flag Books in Honor of The Big Read

As a program of The Big Read in LA, 2016, I taught a flag bookmaking workshop at Verduga Hills High School. The Big Read book is Ray Bradbury‘s “Fahrenheit 451“, in which firemen light fires to burn books, instead of rescuing them from the flames. Although published over 60 years ago, the book remains uncomfortably relatable to present day issues. Even prescient at times.

Conducting the workshop with the teens was great.  I loved it, the students loved it, the school librarian loved it, and the classroom teacher loved it.  Here are a few images of what the students made.

WEB10Students had a choice of “flag” pages: rectangles of uniform size, cut from tagboard in an array of bright colors, repurposed library return cards offered up by the school librarian (treasures!), pieces of  sketchbook covers, and  one off items such at the card above, painted in black chalkboard paint and adorned with red letters and numbers.

WEB3Students used a variety of materials to create layered meaning through text and image.

WEB1They mixed it up, playing with pattern, visual texture and color in their compositions.

WEB8A curated selection of quotes from the book were available, and a number of students used them in their books.

WEB7These young artists had the passion!

WEB6They spoke their hearts.

WEB5“Meaningful elements remind us to live”

WEB2“Pura Vida” = Pure Life.  Setting the intention?

WEB12The color combinations were striking, and students had the chance to see first had how the red accordion spine looked different pared with green….

WEB11and blue. This ambitious young artist reassembled the words that had been cut from this sketchbook cover, to striking effect on his book.

WEB9The Flag Book is a potent vehicle for personal expression, allowing for visual and verbal content on its numerous surfaces, places and spaces, in the form of writing, drawing, collaging, note taking, photographs, and combinations of any and all of these.

Once makers see and experience the possibilities, they are off to the races, their creativity limited only by time and space.

Let the flags of your own creativity, ideas, thoughts and feelings wave! Ray Bradbury did.

 

 

 

Painted Pages: Reading Color I

Painted Pages: Reading Color I

Denim, acrylic paint, hemp cord, board.

Multiple signature binding, each signature composed of a single bifolium.

Cover imagery created by students unloading their paint brushes on to the denim surface, at the end of a class where they painted their own canvas book covers. The resulting painting was ‘captured”, adhered to boards, and used as the collaborative cover of this book.

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WEBo

WEBh   WEBn

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WEBi

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And a river ran through it. The End.

For now…

Siting Santa Monica: Architectural Variety is the Splice of Life

Siting Santa Monica: Architectural Variety is the Splice of Life

An informal romp through  the Pico-Lincoln neighborhood of Southwest Santa Monica yields glimpses of  architectural treasures of all sorts.

WEBaAlleyways across the board in Santa Monica yield moments of contemplation and surprise, like this wall crawling with red blooms, reminding me for all the world, of Southern France.

WEBcFantastical decorative gates are another Los Angeles hallmark, and Santa Monica is no exception.Here an image that has become “au courrant” among the holistic set.

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WEBeGlass bricks, metal and stone flanked by green combine to elegant effect in this vertical structure.

WEBiI wondered if this brilliant yellow and white building was live work space.

WEBjIt looked to be designed with a nautical feel, appropriate to its location in the beach town of Santa Monica.

WEBgVariety is the spice of life, and here in Santa Monica, architectural styles run the gamut. Here we have a study in yellows: bright yellow on the modern, multi-unit building, and earthy ochre yellow on the small neighboring house.

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WEBfVoila, a beautiful ad hoc complimentary set up!  Starring the complimentary pair of purple and yellow hues, opposite each other on the color wheel.

WEBkFinally, another pastoral scene that one sees often in Santa Monica..an outdoor dining set up, in an enclosed area that is right off the street! Santa Monicans, and Angelenos in general love themselves some hedges, fences, plants and gates to create privacy, but true to theatrical form, often right off the busy sidewalks outside their homes! What else would you expect in this glowing and glittering home to the entertainment industry?

Lucky for us, the setting in these parts here has its pastoral side…and a great deal of variety, which makes for some rewarding walks for the  flaneur. Big Fun, and a visual feast…or is it a movable feast?

Let’s get walking!

Happy Birthday SMPL

Happy Birthday SMPL

December 2015 marked the 125th Anniversary of the Santa Monica Public Library. The Library celebrated from November 2015 through January 2016 with programs and special events that “honor the library’s position as a connecting point – bridging the past to the future, bringing community members together, and plugging library patrons into the resources they need to read, connect, relax and learn.”

I was honored to lead a bookmaking program for families and folks of all ages on Saturday, January 12th.

Sat,
Jan 9

 125th - fanbook

Make a Fan-Style Memory Book

Saturday, January 9, 2016 at 11:00 am
Main Library, Youth Activity Room, 601 Santa Monica Boulevard

For families with children and adults. Commemorate the library’s anniversary with a memory book in this craft workshop.

 

Let the fun begin!

WEBi.After folding their accordion spines, participants added covers and pages to create their books.

WEBb.Our first hour was spent learning how to create the book structure and doing so, then…

WEBn.we got to the fun part (well, it is ALL fun…)…what to add to our books.

WEBc.Colorful, glittery stickers were in abundance.

WEBm.The folded “fan” book (which has some similarities to the  “Flag Book“) can stand up on a surface in a star-like shape…

WEBl.so that the pages can be seen from different vantage points, and used to great effect for display. Great for a centerpiece, and to display photos on.

WEBd.Participants enjoyed a multitude of foam sticker letters.  Has spelling ever been so fun?

WEBe.Here’s our line-up of stellar assistants, two library pages (yes, they are still called “pages”,) and a volunteer.  It would not have been the same with out them!  THANK YOU Perla, Keisha and Cassandra!

WEBh.More letter stickers, and a layering of color, texture and shapes creates an elegant cover.

WEBk.This one’s for Mom…(George’s Mom…)

WEBj.The books become sculptural when three-dimensional elements are added.

     WEBo.Proud BOOKMAKERS share their completed masterworks…

WEBa.Displaying an  impressive creativity, use of materials, and sense of design.

WEBg.One appreciative patron took off on the idea of creating a book to commemorate  “her” library…

WEBf.This one may be archived by the SMPL…it’s a keeper.

A keeper of memory, celebration, and possibility.

Like the Library!

Happy Birthday, SMPL!

Building Work

Building Work

In a recent after-school enrichment class, entitled aptly enough, “Art, Artists and Art History”, students created their own “built environments“, then painted mini-murals on them, inspired by artist / muralist Diego Rivera.

WebS.In the process, they learned about color mixing…

WebD.composition…

Web1. WebE.two and three-dimensional art,

WebQ.painting  techniques and how to cover a surface,

WebI.planning, drawing and imagination,

WebL.their color preferences, (“I like purple!” declared this 6 year-old artist),

WebP.how to create “windows and doors”,

WEB_04.and look through them,

WEB_03.and best of all, how to create their own special world, through color, imagery, texture, openings and space.

We celebrate this!