Friday, September 5, 2008

Her first steps, though cautious,

began immediately to reinforce her faith in greater possibilities.

Richard Stine.

Hi Everyone,

I've had a signed print for more than 20 years now by Richard Stine that's one of my favourite pieces of art and certainly one of my favourite sayings. This first image is the general principle (mine is a little different because it's much older) and is from

Feel free to browse the rest of his images and perhaps buy a card or two. His art is on the quirky side and there are several images that make me smile, even now, 20 years later (including Duck, Mad Woman trying to bury feelings and most of the dog ones).

I've been wanting to adapt his saying to the clay media and I'd check every so often to see if he was listed on a website somewhere to be able to contact him. This last check yielded results and I e-mailed him to ask permission to adapt his saying to clay. He's very graciously allowed me to as long as I don't do it for monetary value.

So off I went to try to design something. I spent several hours today looking for profiles of women that I could use for the design. Nothing quite fit. Then I remembered that Jode from New Hampshire (who does beautiful mosaics) had given me a tip on how to do her rainy day mosaic piece and that was to have someone photograph herself wrapped in a blanket. So, I got my husband to photograph me pretending to walk on water. Photo manipulate, scan, etc, and here's an image that I like.

Part one of the design accomplished. The next step was to decide what to do it on. And, of course, a tin came to mind. I did the lettering using my metal typeset letters that I bought a few years ago from Don Black's Linotype store (which, if you're in the Toronto area, is a very interesting place to see). It was slow to do - I actually started backwards with the period after possibilities and then worked my towards the "Her". I wanted to make sure that I had enough room for all the words. It wasn't too bad, only made a couple of minor mistakes that were easy to fix.

Before I had a chance to muck it up too much with nicks and dents, I baked it quickly to set the words. I antiqued with a bluey white (this time I liked the antiquing).

Initially I tried cutting out my silhouette with clay, but I didn't like it. I kept going back to my black and white image that I had already cut out and then I thought, "why not use that?".

I also tried using the bathtub concept but I couldn't make anything that didn't look like a hunk of clay. So, a sailboat was much easier.

This last photo is the finished result. This is the lid to a tin. Dimensions are 5" wide (12.5 cm) by 3" tall (8 cm). All told there are about 4 hours of work in this, including the design and futzing with the photo image.

I love it.

And I'm happy to give as much credit to Richard Stine as he's willing to bear.

P.S. It turns out I didn't need to make it into a tin. I've now got the tin lid hanging in my cubicle at work.

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