Wednesday, September 22, 2010

One of the great things about taking workshops like the one I took a few weeks ago at the SF Center for the Book is connecting with other creative people in the class - sharing insight, advice, and practical tips about being an artist. At that SFCB workshop, two of the artists in the class recommended as a great place to get business cards made. I went online and ordered a batch of their MiniCards - which are half the size of a regular business card and allow you to choose as many images as you want on an order of 100.

I have always been a lover of small things - it's part of why much for the work in Mapping the Body is small scale. These cards are right up my alley. On the back of each is my name and web site, and on the front I selected a range of work (all cropped a bit to fit the card size). Here in this photo you see along the bottom the following images: A Creative Fire Within, Flight, Sanctuary #5, and Evocation #018, plus in the box Encyclopedia and Embolden Wishes for Positive Change. I love it that when passing out cards people can choose their favorite image.

I also ordered from Moo a nice case to keep the cards in my purse - but beware if you have a two year old in your household. Mine has co-opted the case as her new toy, and buried it in her room somewhere. If you are new to Moo, you can get a 10% discount on your order if purchased by September 30 by using this code: BVJH7H.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Evocations in Tricycle Magazine

I just received a nice package of 10 copies of the new issue of Tricycle: The Buddhist Review, which includes reproductions of my series Evocations. They have paired my images of bottles, maps, and bodies with an article on the 5th precept of Buddhism - the non-use of intoxicants. I am still not exactly sure how my work connects to the writing, but I like the poetic stretch of having it appear in a new context. Also in this issue is a great article on the Gulf Oil Spill by my neighbor & gardener Wendy Johnson, plus an inspiring piece on "Yoga and Creativity" by Anne Cushman. I love what she says here about writing, which is also applicable to photography:
"I used to believe that writing was a way to create a kind of back up life for myself, to pickle reality in paragraphs for future consumption. I thought I could capture life's precious, fluttering moments in a net of words. But through yoga - and growing older - I know that writing can't trump impermanence. What I've mounted on the head of my writer's pin are just cocoons. The actual butterflies have flow away long ago."
Until today, I had never read Tricycle before. They contacted me out of the blue to ask permission to use my work in this issue. What I love is that my art is exposing me to new ideas - it's as if the pieces themselves have a life of their own, traveling out into the world and connecting in new ways with words, ideas, and people - giving me back the gift of new experience.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Modern Book Moves to San Francisco

Last week, I had a nice visit to Modern Book Gallery at their new location at 49 Geary Street in San Francisco. Previously on University Ave in Palo Alto, they are now on the fourth floor of this building known for housing top-notch galleries like Fraenkel, Koch, and Stephen Wirtz. The space looks terrific - bright and elegant. I particularly love this corner dedicated to books published by Modern Book, including titles by Maggie Taylor, Fan Ho, Fred Lyon, Brigitte Carnochan, and an about-to-be-released retrospective publication on Jerry Uelsmann. They will be doing a book signing and closing party for Fred Lyon's series of vintage San Francisco photos on Saturday, September 11, 2-5pm. I am crossing my fingers I can get there.

My work has been represented by Modern Book since 2003, and you could find a large selection of my work there in the back room. I just delivered 10 more pieces from Mapping the Body for them to take to several upcoming art fairs including - Art Toronto, Art Miami, and Art Chicago. I have so valued working with Mark and Bryan and having my work included in their stable of artists as they have grown and evolved over time.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Altered Books

Yesterday I spent a blissful six hours at the San Francisco Center for the Book ripping, sewing, gluing, and cutting -- transforming books into art objects. It was with a little trepidation that I made my first tear into a book called The Long Tomorrow, but after my initial hesitation, I got quite into it - sewing pockets, gluing pages together, and even dismantling books entirely to discover their beautiful string bindings. The instructor, Jody Alexander, offered all kinds of great tools, examples, and techniques for working with found books. As an artist who loves containers (i.e. bottles and frames), I really love the idea of using the old discarded book as another form of containment. In particular, I really enjoyed turning this book (pictured here) on Australia into a "safe book," with all the pages glued together and then an opening cut out where some kind of art or poetic meaning could be placed. So many possibilities....such fun to open up to new techniques like these.