Saturday, September 22, 2007

GI Tin Fairy House

I was lucky enought to be a guest at a Tin Fairy House class held at Zinnia in South Pasadena. The class was taught by my good friend, Tyn, who will also instruct you in techniques for collage, image transfer, and the very unique "mini quilt." You can see some of her tin creations on her blog.

Tin houses begin with a small Altoids container. The goal is to create a 3-D effect by layering the imagery inside the box. I used an old GI photo, moss, cut out teeth, and an image transfered on to vinyl. Later, basic tin boxes are cut to create a "frame" for the box. Decorative brads can hold the layers of tin together creating a substantial look that is very satisfying. My lighting was completely shabby when I shot the piece. Looks like you'll have to attend a Happening to see its finer points.

Old Photos

I buy old photos and slides at estate sales. Are you looking for specific subject matter? Ask me, and I will probably give it to you. I have hundreds and hundreds.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

It Happened in Class - 1

This post begins a new feature at Open 2 Anything. I'll be sharing gems from inside the fourth grade classroom. Trust me, there are millions a year, and I've already had my first one. While the story is true, the names have been changed to protect the innocent.

** Brady names have been substituted in for the originals. **

We were having a discussion of fiction vs non-fiction. On the white board, words were listed under the heading "Fiction." Generated by the students, we had: fake, false, untrue, made-up, and a few others.

Greg raised his hand eagerly to share his story of a UFO invasion. "Exactly!" I chimed in. "That would be a fiction story because it didn't really happen." Greg was quick to point out that it COULD happen because he had seen a History Channel story, indicating that there was life in the universe.

I pointed out that "life" may exist and probably does, but it might be in a form that is very less intelligent than our own.

He pointed out "Area 51"

I pointed out Men in Black does not equal truth.

Realizing the discussion was to promote an understanding of the fiction classification, I asked him to tell us more about his story.

"Well, the aliens landed at City Hall"
"Wait, who remembers reading that in the newspaper? Who saw it on TV? Oh, no? That's how we know it fake."
"But the aliens were . . ."
"But . . ."
"B . . ."

Now, I know Greg can handle this from me because he's smiling and laughing. He's the type of GATE kid who can hold his own with adults.

Buuuuuut, Cindy sure isn't! And this is what the story is really about. Cindy raises her hand to speak. Instead of freezing like she did on that damn quiz show where she is just staring into the red light on top of the camera, she actually has something to say.

A lot to say!! And she goes on and on and on . . .

Just about the time where I'm gonna shut this down, Cousin Oliver calls in a drawn out monotone,


And the room erupts with tiny laughter. (Maybe not so tiny, though.)

So, the waterworks start almost instantly, but there was that frozen moment where Cindy and I look at each other. Me saying with my eyes, "It's just a scrape, you're fine, right?" Wrong! I dip into Teaching 101 and use the old, "Take Cindy to the bathroom. Cindy, splash some water on your face. You'll be OK" (That water is magic, I tell ya!)

Don't worry, we made this a class discussion and sorted it all out. We talked about how what I said to Greg was very similar. We talked about taking responsibility, no matter what your intentions are. Let's just hope there isn't a phone message waiting for me from Mike Brady, when I get back to class.

The Blog, She is a Changin'

So, I'm beginning to realize that I want to write more. I had thought this blog would just be about Open 2 Anything and the Happenings we put on. That, it will continue to be.

However, I want to open up the creative process and share other things in my life that I find interesting. Of course, it will continue to have a heavy art/creative slant. But you'll also be able to find amusing anecdotes peppering the site from now on.