Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Love Letter


This is what I've been working on for the past little while. Its working title is Love Letter to Fredericksburg, and is my attempt to re-purpose some of my used/old printmaking blocks to make something new. This is essentially a large printmaking block. I made it by collaging recycled papers over an old painting on a canvas board and then mounted expired or discarded blocks on it, all of which have something to do with my adopted town. Originally I was planning two pieces of art from this, the first one being the block, and the second an embellished print from the block.

Today I pulled four prints on two different papers, and while I was really happy with the prints, it became pretty clear that the block itself was not going to stand up to the challenge of being framed and displayed. Below is the third print I pulled, on a Rives light sheet of warm white paper.


For my finished project, however, I want to use the print pulled on a handmade Thai grass paper, mount it on a piece of water color paper to strengthen it, and then embellish it with thread. The love letter part is the writing which explains where in Fred the image came from, why I made the piece and/or why it's so important to me.

Below is my sample piece, and I apologize now for the poor quality of the photo, but I wanted to give an idea of where I am going with this. To test out the paper and the process, I took a test print of an arrangement of my blocks. In order to be able to get the thread and needle through the double sheet of paper, I used an awl and hammer to poke holes in the pattern I wanted to sew. Can you see the Rappahannock River???

My plan is to mat and frame the final embellished print and enter it in a show at LibertyTown called Discarded Potential.

16 comments:

Cathyann said...

Fantastic idea and looking great so far. I wish you could enter the mounted blocks, as well, somehow...I like this insight to your working process, Elizabeth.Thanks for sharing this with us. I can see the river.

Dayna Talbot said...

Elizabeth....I stumbled on your blog and really enjoy the prints! I need to take more time and check it out! Nice work!

Blue Sky Dreaming said...

I'm glad I clicked to enlarge...wonderful detail and truly telling a story...nice work!

Jeane said...

I love the idea of 'a love letter' - this is just wonderful Elizabeth! - this whole process feels like a very strong emotion :)

Jean Spitzer said...

This looks very intriguing with the embellishments.

Jo Horswill said...

Oh, a pictorial love letter...Elizabeth this is really special.
The mounted print blocks are an art piece in themselves!
Your print is gorgeous...I like the idea of hand stitch and the paper is just lovely too.

Elizabeth Seaver said...

Thanks for your kind comments, everyone. I am pleased with the prints and will begin sewing on it soon. I'll post it when I get photos.

Kerri Settle said...

I love this concept. I'd also love to see the mounted blocks displayed in a deep frame. What issues are you having with it that made you decide it won't stand up to being framed?

Elizabeth said...

WOOO HOOOO Now your are stitching!! I could feel that it was coming!! Now we can get you into the Fiber Arts Guild as a ReAL memeber- not just honorary anymore- OH NO!!! Love Love this piece!! Can't wait to see it in the flesh!!
Hugs!
Elizabeth

The river looks fabulous!!!

Kathleen Krucoff said...

Oh Elizabeth, this is sooooo cool. Love the concept, love the look. It's just great. What an innovative creation.

Elizabeth Seaver said...

Hi, Kerri. The main issue I'm having is the weight of the blocks and the boards needed to mount them on and how it then sits in the frame. I think I'm going to have to put a shim in the bottom of the frame to keep it from falling out of the top. My goal with this project was not to buy anything new, since the theme is discarded potential, otherwise, I'd be getting a NEW frame!

Thanks for your question and your interest, Kerri!

Elizabeth Seaver said...

Hey, Elizabeth. I'd be honored to be a member of the FSWG! They are the nicest group of people in the world!

Thanks for the woo-hoo and for coming by to see me in my studio. Your encouragement means a lot!

Elizabeth Seaver said...

Thanks Kathleen! Don't we all inspire each other in our creative endeavors? For instance, I'm really excited to see your new work with jewelry! Thanks for reading my blog and leaving such nice comments.

Robyn said...

The mounted wood blocks make my heart go pitter pat. Love the prints and the "love letter" idea.

Gwen Bell said...

This piece has so much thought and creativity in it. The detail in the blocks is magnificent. There is something about the sewing that somehow touches the primal "Texan" in me. Can't quite put my finger on it. Jeane said it so well..."feels like a very strong emotion". Would love to see a better photo when you get around to it.

Cathy said...

This is a great idea and very creative. I love the pulled prints and the idea of embellishing with stitching makes it very personal somehow.