Thanksgiving is a day of gratitude and sharing for me. I am so grateful to all of you who read my blog and those who share your comments with me. I feel so blessed to be able to share my paper art with so many people, many of whom I will never meet. Thank you all from the bottom of my heart.
A collaboration I did with my mother. She did the Chinese brush painting and I did the brush calligraphy.
I am grateful for my loving family and friends, near and far, old and new. Thank you ALL for being so supportive of me and of each other. I am truly blessed to have you as part of my life.
Love and blessings to all, Candy
This past week I worked on replenishing my stock of greeting cards. I print, cut, fold and package my own greeting cards. I combine my calligraphy with either my paste papers or marbling or watercolors to create my cards.
Three of my greeting cards.
I scan both my calligraphy and my painting and combine them in Photoshop. I then print them on my Epson 3000 printer which uses archival ink. I print my cards on 8 1/2″ by 11″ paper, score and fold the paper, then cut it to 5″ by 7″ with my trusty Olfa hand cutter.
I print my cards on letter sized card stock. Here are a few of the ones I printed this week.
It is somewhat labor intensive, but it allows me to make just the amount of cards I want. I only sell my cards in my own studio, so this works for me.
Framable calligraphy card – the heart never gets wrinkles
My cards are designed so that they look great when put in a 5″ by 7″ mat or frame. That’s why I call them Framables.
On my recent trip to Portland, Oregon, I stopped by 23 Sandy Gallery to see their latest exhibit, Blood Quantum, a book art exhibit about ancestry, identity and our personal cultural narrative. It’s a wonderful exhibit and will be on view through December 19.
Catalog for Blood Quantum at 23 Sandy Gallery
Blood Quantum is a concept that refers to the degree of ancestry for an individual of a specific racial or ethnic group such as Native Americans. This concept leads to thinking about ancestry, identity, heritage, family history and personal cultural narrative.
you are with me by Jihae Kwon
Artist books, as multi-surfaced and textural objects, are a perfect medium to explore such complex and powerful topics. Artists responded to our call with deeply felt, thoughtful works—at once celebration, remembrance and reflection.
Fabulas Para La Obediente Mujer by Marisol Ardon
Robert Gore, Visual Arts Librarian and curator of the artists’ book collection in the UCLA Arts Library helped with the jurying of this exhibit.
Riddle One by Anita Bigelow
As Robert Gore said in his juror statement: “To name a few places, in the course of this show you will travel with the artists to Latin America, Russia, France, Poland, Hawaii, China, Chile, Tennessee, Appalachia, Canada, India, South Korea, Virginia, Norway, Mexico, and the Cherokee, Nuxalk, and Oneida Nations.”
Ancestral Pods by Hidde Van Duym
I loved this exhibit. I hope you have a chance to see it. If not, you can see more on 23 Sandy Gallery’s website.
The University of Oregon Bookstore has the best selection of decorative papers I have ever seen. And luckily, it’s about half way between my home and Portland, Oregon, which I visit multiple times a year.
Four binders with lots of paper samples in each.
I try to time my trips to or from Portland so that I pass through Eugene when the University of Oregon Bookstore is open. This past week. I made sure I left Portland early enough to have a couple of hours to browse through papers in the Bookstore, a trip of about 300 miles.
One of six binders full of paper samples I looked through at the University of Oregon Bookstore.
On this latest trip, I looked through the 6 huge binders which contain samples of decorated papers, each sample in a plastic sleeve. I managed to get out the door with a mere 21 sheets of paper this time. If you love paper and are in Eugene, you’ll love visiting the basement of the University of Oregon Bookstore.
One of the new papers I purchased. I think this will make a great Paper Lotus Flower.
I found some shimmery paper that I think would make great holiday garlands. Look for them to appear in an upcoming blog post.
If you enjoy either miniature books or artist books, you should check out the books made by Camille Riner. I made her Tiny Winter Walk Book from a digital file earlier this year and wrote about it on this blog. Now she has come out with a new book, Good People.
Good People Artist Book I made from downloaded files made by Camille Riner.
I was lucky enough to be chosen to try out and proof the file for her new book, Good People. This is a colorful, two sided nesting accordion book.
The first step was to print, then cut out the covers and pages for the text.
Following Camille’s written instructions with lots of illustrations, I came up with two accordion folded sections which are nested and glued together to make a wonderful little book.
The text of this book is two nested accordion folds. The covers haven’t been attached yet.
I had never made this type of accordion book before. I enjoyed making the book. Camille’s instructions and illustrations made it a breeze. It looks more complicated to make than it really is.
Looking at the back of the book, Good People. I love books that have interesting front and back sides!
Camille has designed and made a number of delightful little artist books. I encourage you to check out her website: CamilleRiner.com.
Good People Artist Book shown open.
If you are interested in purchasing any of Camille’s work, just click on “shop” from her website.
Another look at the back side of Good People Artist Book.
I will include a link to where you can purchase the downloadable book once it is available.
This past week I’ve been working on different colors and designs for folded paper necklaces with matching earrings. I’ve come up with 5 designs that I like.
Folded paper necklace and earrings named “Peacock.”
I made these folded paper necklaces and earrings are for our neighborhood Art, Crafts & Collectibles Holiday Sale which takes place on November 21.
Folded paper necklace and earrings named “Cotton Candy.”
I got the idea for this folded paper jewelry from the Earth Spirit Vessels I’ve been making. It took me a while to find colorful fade resistant paper that I could use to make this jewelry. I love what I found!
Folded paper necklace and earrings named “Limeade.”
I had a lot of fun naming my jewelry. I wanted names that were descriptive of the colors I used to make them. I came up with Peacock, Cotton Candy, Limeade, Fire and Alabaster.
Folded paper necklace and earrings named “Fire.”
A friend of mine says that I should market these pieces as Travel Jewelry. They are beautiful and unique, yet are inexpensive and could be easily replace if lost or stolen.
Folded paper necklace and earrings named “Alabaster.”
Periodically I get asked to either teach calligraphy or recommend a book for learning calligraphy. My answer to both requests is to recommend Italic Calligraphy by Inga Dubay and Barbara Getty.
Italic Letters: Calligraphy & Handwriting by Inga Dubay and Barbara Getty is my number one recommendation for anyone wanting to learn italic calligraphy.
First, I must say that I feel that italic calligraphy is the most versatile of all alphabets. It can be written friendly or formal. It can be written plain or highly flourished. It can even be written with a ball point pen (called monoline italic). If I had a favorite alphabet, it would be italic because of its versatility.
A very free italic written on an envelope.
So, when my friend, Anna, came to me and asked for a recommendation for a calligraphy class or book, I heartily recommended Italic Calligraphy. I think italic is the best alphabet to start learning calligraphy. And the presentation by Inga Dubay and Barbara Getty in this book makes learning italic so much easier than any other book I have ever seen.
This is a simple italic of mine without many flourishes on a watercolor background.
The book starts with writing monoline italic, thats just a fancy name for writing with a ball point pen or a pencil. It’s so non-threatening. You get to learn the letter shapes before having to concern yourself with an edged pen and trying to hold the pen at a 45 degree angle and writing at a slight slant.
I like to combine italic calligraphy with other alphabets. Here the “war” is written with a pointed brush and the text is written in a simple italic.
It’s the perfect book for someone learning calligraphy on their own. When I last taught italic calligraphy, this was the book I used. I can’t say enough positive things about this book. It’s so rich with information.
Another example of my combining italic calligraphy with pointed brush calligraphy
While the book suggests you write in it, please don’t. You will get so much more out of the book if you can repeat pages as you practice. So, I suggest you get some quality writing paper and take that to your local copy shop and copy the pages you want to practice onto that paper. One such quality paper is Gilbert bond. Any paper that works with your pen and gives you crisp lines is fine. What you don’t want is a cheap paper where your ink bleeds.
Another example of my italic calligraphy.
Write on, Candy
Every year I give out Halloween treats in boxes that I’ve made. This year I’m using my Truffle Box template to make my Halloween treat boxes.
This box is made from a file folder and covered with fabric. I cut and folded the file folder, then glued the fabric on the file folder.
In addition to making my own Halloween treat boxes, I taught my fellow calligraphers how to make them too. I asked them to bring paper suitable for Halloween boxes and taught them how to make these boxes without the need for a template.
This box was made in my box class. The paper ribbon makes this simple orange box into something very special.
The instructions for making these boxes without a template is a bit too much to explain in this blog, so for those of you reading this blog, you can just download the Truffle Box template and print it on the back of your paper and fold as shown in my blog post DIY Truffle Box.
Another Halloween box made in my class. This was made with scrapbook paper.
There are many adaptations you can make for the closure of this box. You can see some of the ideas my fellow calligraphers came up with. Think of beads and loops and sticks and wire ribbon and more.
Fall leaves scrapbook paper was used to make this box. This is another box from the class I taught.
If you look closely, you can see that this box is made from paper that is black on black. Another box from the class I taught.
This box, made in the class I taught, uses raffia to hold it closed.
I decided to tie all my Halloween Treat Boxes with raffia. It’s easy to open and has a Halloween feel to it.
Luckily I don’t get too many trick-or-treaters at my house. All I need is a few dozen boxes which I fill with non-edible treats. I don’t like the idea of giving candy to children, so I give bat and skull rings and other little treats in my boxes.
This Halloween Treat Box is made out of a digital scanned image of one of my paste papers.
I still have a few boxes from previous years, so I can be pretty confident that I won’t run out of boxes for my treats. So far, I haven’t had that problem.
Another of my scanned digital paste papers made into a Halloween Treat Box.
Another Halloween Treat Box made from one of my scanned digital paste papers.
I love how these Halloween Treat Boxes look together.
Here’s the information on making these yourself.
Truffle Box template (click to download)
DIY Truffle Box (blog post with instructions for folding)
This past week I took Marilyn Reaves’ 2-day workshop, Big Words for Big Ideas In Your Journal. We played with pointed brush and flat brush alphabets for headings for our journal pages.
Journal page by Marilyn Reaves.
After we all drooled over Marilyn’s beautiful journals, we started by working with the pointed brush and watercolors. Then we switched to the flat brush and gouache. Marilyn likes to use watercolors with the pointed brush, but thinks the flat brush needs the consistency of gouache to make the best letters.
Vicci’s sample sheet of the various alphabets we worked with.
We practiced pointed brush lower case and upper case letters, then switched to the Zebra alphabet which is made with multiple strokes with a pointed brush. We shifted to the flat brush for Uplift and two variations of Neuland, one of which we renamed Chinky Neuland rather than New Neuland.
Marilyn demonstrating the Uplift alphabet.
From top to bottom: Chinky Neuland, Zebra, Uplift, Neuland and pointed brush all done by Trisha.
Day two of the workshop started with flat brush script, Jovial (lower case) and Bluebird Brush Caps. These are loose and casual and made with one stroke when possible.
Marilyn Reaves demonstrating Bluebird Brush Caps.
After playing with all those different alphabets, it was time to incorporate them with sketches and a bit of writing in our journals. Marilyn demonstrated various ways to sketch images in our journals.
Marilyn demonstrating multiple ways to sketch pears.
Now it was our turn to sketch in our journals. Our homework had been to take a 30″ by 40″ piece of Arches text wove and tear it into pages for our journal. We could choose whatever size of page we wanted for our journals.
Vicci’s sketch of a perfume bottle. Note the information on the right of the page showing the colors she used.
One of our exercises was to create a focal point with a single work or phrase and from there build a lively journal page. We looked at ways to combine elements and fine a means to integrate the whole journal page.
Bugs journal page done by Cynthia.
Marilyn emphasized that we can make our journal be a reflection of our life in emphatic or quiet words and simple images. We looked at playing with colored pencils, pens (both waterproof and not) and other materials to use to make our journal pages.
Eleanor hung little pen and watercolor dangles from her Chinky Neuland letters.
We looked at how to carry tools for creating journal pages while we travel. Marilyn gave all of us a tiny metal case for us to put our watercolors in while traveling.
Cynthia’s moon journal page.
Marilyn demonstrated the difference between Intense pencils and watercolor pencils. Intense pencils (once dry) glaze over and don’t pick up the color that’s underneath. Watercolor pencils will pick up the color underneath.
Pear journal page (in progress) by Chris. Note the color pallet on the right that she will be able to refer to at a later date.
Marilyn did a marvelous job. We covered a lot of information in just two days. There’s so much more I want to explore using these techniques. Thanks, Marilyn!
Happy Creating, Candy