New Project, Poppy, Magnets

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Work is underway on a new mixed media piece, large (for me) at 24 by 36 inches (61 x 91 cm). These letters are about 2.5 inches tall (64 mm) and being cut from foamcore.

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Poppy the Fairy is being kept busy with her correspondence. These are two accordion books, meant for Ava and Aria to embellish, made from watercolor paper and simple punched shapes. That’s Poppy’s new sigil.

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… As well as Ava’s name rendered in triangles, and another tiny sketchbook for Lynnie (at proper 1:12 scale). Her’s from last week was, um, appropriated by her associates :)

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This week, Poppy made a two-inch square book to answer some of the girls’ questions: Can you do ballet, like me? Do you eat snacks? Tucked into the reply scroll are California poppy seed pods, because one of the things fairies do is gather seeds.

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Inside the book are quick ink and watercolor illustrations with text. Here are a few of the pages, listing some of the things fairies do:

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I can perhaps see a series, as my understanding of the fay way grows :)

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Maddie Lou spent the weekend with us as her parents enjoyed a night in the City to celebrate their anniversary. Here’s Maddie working on a surprising and spontaneous new deployment of her beloved magnetic blocks in the sun room.

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The final arrangement. Can you tell her favorite color is blue?

So awesome on so many levels :)

Sea House Warming Hut: Guest Books, A Sunset… and A Big Butt

Remember this photo? Barbara W. had sent a marvelous gift box of thoughtful miniature wonder, and I was inspired by the open butterfly book ( by Jennifer Hatt of lookingglassminiature.com) to make a guest book for the Warming Hut.

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The page spread is set in 1.5 point type :)

I logged myself in twice, in blue and black ink.

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I call these cheater books, because the pages don’t open or turn, but I did glue the signatures.

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I was going for a Moleskine notebook sort of look with black covers. I also made an open sketchbook with pages being ruffled by the wind, as well as a closed volume. There are no more photos of the process, though, as my husband called me outside to view the rather spectacular sunset. Here is a photo of him taking photos of the sky :)

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That’s the Pacific Ocean, looking pink as bubblegum :)

Anyway, there are the three books I made. I used a thin silk cord to make the page markers. And doesn’t the Peacock rug look splendid with the poppy-colored furniture?

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Instead of making a stand for the guest book, I made this today:

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A big cigarette butt. It’s 3.5 inches (8.9 cm) in diameter and about 24 inches (61 cm) long (unstubbed). I am especially happy with the “tobacco” — dried up leaves from my tomato plants, preserved moss, black tea (Yorkshire Gold) and paint, and a lot of glue.

(I volunteer with Pacifica Beach Coalition. This butt will be part of a display to build awareness that cigarette butts are *not* biodegradable. Did you know that cigarette butts discarded in parking lots, along sidewalks and in street gutters miles from the coast inevitably make their way through storm drains, creeks and rivers to the beach and the ocean, where they continue to leach toxic chemicals? Yuck.)

Blue + Green

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Next volume in the miniature color book series: Blue + Green.

Like Pink + Green, it’s ten pages perfect bound, and measures five picas square (.833 in/21 mm).

This one shows found beach glass on a watercolor background, the view from Rattlesnake Ledge in West Greenwich, Rhode Island, afternoon surf off West Cliff in Santa Cruz, California, pool noodles on a wooden bench, and a self-portrait with found fishing lure, Pacifica, California.

Because color is endlessly interesting.

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Designed a modern miniature book about color, the first in a series, called Pink + Green. It’s ten pages perfect bound, and measures five picas square (.833 in/21 mm). I made all the photographs; my daughter drew the cat when she was like three or four.

(Actually, she drew the front. I made the back view when I had it printed on fabric at Spoonflower to make stuffed loveys :)

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These are the flat pages and covers, ready to be scored and trimmed.

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Text blocks folded and glued, waiting to dry.

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First cover on. After they’re really dry, I’ll clamp them in a press and square up the spines. And when they’re all crisp, I’ll brush a light coat of varnish on the cover. They’ll be lovely on the shelves with other books about local history and… rocks. Waves. Tides. Fossils? Bee-keeping? Native plants? Marine mammals, fish and invertebrates? Cookbooks? Plate tectonics?

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My two-year-old granddaughter was here last weekend, and she is of course very interested in the Sea House Warming Hut. I had moved all the really delicate things out so she can explore and interact with it (supervised). She made sure to close all the windows “so the raccoons don’t come in”. She is a tremendous appreciator of my work :)

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We did painting together. This one turned out to be the base for a trail map of the area I’m working on.

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I’m drawing over it with fine tip markers and water color pencils. The little folded jaws-thing is a scaled mockup of the pop-up map it will become (sans cover). I learned this technique from Map Art Lab by Jill K. Berry and Linden McNeilly. It’s a great book; I especially appreciate their List of Resources for Arty Cartographers. Recommend!

I’ll finish the map art in Illustrator, adding names and legends and neat lines.

Realistically, I expect I’ll use a combination of hand-drawn things and copyright-free stuff I glean from the internet and other sources to fill the bookshelves. Because, you know, time.

Finally, and thank you for reading (or skimming) this far, check out my About page. I’ve actually sort of worked on it a teensil, and have added a PO Box to my contact information. Progress!