But I keep calling it a banner. Each little portion is 3 by 3 inches.m

Update: Retreat was canceled! No power at our destination.

I’m off to teach some old friends how to make a garland like this at a retreat in the woods in Massachusetts. If all goes well, we’ll have a collaborative artwork to share.

The car is just a banner holder in the sun.


Fantasy Life

In my dreams I live in a cabin in the woods — a shack, an RV, a small rundown farmhouse. None of these fits my authentic lifestyle, but the concept lives on in my alternative universe.

I’m glad I’m collaging again.

Weird Scissors

My scissors were in a weird frame of mind when I sat down to do some gluebook-style collage this morning.

I myself wasn’t feeling weird at all.

February 14

Be my valentine. Thanks for looking, followers!

Nine to Four

I was thinking about a simple art activity I could lead in a 90-minute session. I wanted a stress-free process whose result tickles the imagination and doesn’t require special skills, just willingness to wield a glue stick.

I found this idea in a quilt shop in Stetson, Florida, and decided to try it out in paper.

I made a simple collage of nine one-inch squares cut from magazine images. I pasted them down in a grid. The thick, wonky, dark blue lines below are just to make the grid visible. You don’t actually draw any lines, especially not crooked ones like these.


You could make a pretty nine-patch collage this way, although this one isn’t it.

I cut the nine-patch grid into four pieces. More wonky blue lines, again for demo purposes only.


Finally I rotated and re-arranged the pieces until I liked the result. I haven’t pasted them down yet, but it might be something like this.


In a group, we could also swap patches before re-assembling them. The result might be a piece of mail art (if you sealed it down with packing tape) or a personal banner (hole-punch and yarn for hanging, glue a coin or washer on the back for weight), something for your journal if you keep one or just a souvenir of some fun you had.


Does this sound like 90 minutes to you, if I bring a box of pre-cut one-inch squares to choose from?

Gluebooking and Mark-making

I am working on two art challenges this month and happily getting them mixed up. One is a gluebook challenge, while the other focuses on mark-making. Each challenge has its own daily “prompt,” but usually I go my own way and don’t work with prompts. This practice slightly reduces the opportunities for confusion – any idea will work with either challenge.


What’s a gluebook? Here’s one gal’s definition.

Most mixed-media artists mentally edit “definitions” to suit their personal proclivities.I don’t make gluebooks in a book, for instance.

In fact I’m taking this opportunity to use up an overrun of invitations to an event I hosted. The paper is card-weight and 4.25 x 5.5 inches. I may corner-punch the cards and string them together later, or I may not. Right now I stack ’em up. (Even that is an overstatement!)

For gluebooking, I use magazine material mostly. Sometimes I create vignettes, sometimes there’s a focal image, and sometimes I just play with color and pattern. If I paste down some words, I like to make ’em wry or cryptic.

That’s what I’m up to this month. I may end up with 28 of something new.

Anais Nin

This is her face, gazing up from a discarded library book and setting me off on a small collage last summer. I haven’t read her work in years, and I don’t recall that it resonated particularly then, but I admire her persistence in recording her life and thought.  The owlets that frame her face are a hoot, don’t you think?.


Today, I didn’t particularly like the quote in the center. The words weren’t tied to the images, except in the sense that Anais Nin wrote them. I obscured it digitally. Now just a few good words peek out: hilltop, beautiful, lived there. I’ll try something similar on the original.