Saturday, January 28, 2006

Soul Searching

I’ve been doing a lot of soul searching lately. I’ve said before, I’m not fond of writing journals. I’m sure the fact that English was not my favorite subject in school is no surprise. I have butchered the English language in this blog with my poor grammar and typing skills. HOWEVER, as an artist I do love using digital collage as a way to get my "insides out".. I spent the day working with Photoshop creating this personal collage from one of my pictures taken in Provence and other pictures I have on file. I am happy with the results and plan to do more of them.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Scandinavian Ingenuity

When I opened the box of my assemble-it-yourself kitchen cart I was impressed with the compact, organized packing of the contents. My first impulse was to open all the little packages and jump right in and start screwing (up). I usually read instructions only when I’m elbow deep in frustration, but I listened to my intuition this time and read them first. Glad I did, as the simple as the project appeared, there was an exact procedure that had to be followed. I gave into the designer’s plan and marveled, as I worked, at the precision and planning that went into it. I don’t believe I’ve ever seen such attention to detail. My old “anal” Danish boyfriend couldn’t have done it better. The cart is finished and gracing my kitchen so I decided to create a collage in honor of the project.

Monday, January 23, 2006

Digital Photograms

Still inspired by photograms, I decided to play with the idea of creating a pseudo photogram using my scanner ( scannergram?) and Photoshop. I scanned several junk items into Photoshop then inverted the image to create a negative. Quick and simple. To take it a step further I added a color layer to try and imitate Thomas Barrow's technique of spray painting and stenciling on top of the photogram. To push the color enhancement I used digital filters. Something that could have been done without Photoshop in the darkroom with actual negatives or slides. It was a fun experiment and something that I’m sure I will incorporate in future work.

Sunday, January 22, 2006


I found an old Camera & Darkroom magazine in my stack of photography magazines. Apparently the magazine is no longer published as I could not Google it up. The publisher was L.F.P. Inc., which, according to my search, published Hustler, so maybe that explains why it is no longer in print. Interesting photography “bedfellows”!

Leafing through my copy of C&D I found an article about photograms. It caught my attention because of my fascination with digital collage. The layered effect often achieved in photograms looks much like the layered collages I create in Photoshop. A photogram is basically an abstract photographic image of light and shadow created without a camera. It is actually a negative created by placing opaque and/ or translucent objects on a sheet of photographic paper then exposed to light. It is processed and developed like a traditional photograph. The results are white silhouettes on a black background.

Davis at wrote, "Photograms have borne a number of names. Henry Talbot made "photogenic drawings" in the 19th century. Christian Schad, a German artist, made "Schadographs" after World War I. He exposed chance arrangements of found objects and waste materials (such as torn tickets, receipts, and rags) on photographic film. U.S. artist Man Ray undertook similar experiments, which he called "Rayographs," that were effected by arranging translucent and opaque materials on photographic paper. Lucia Moholy and Lazlo Moholy-Nagy's cameraless images bore the name that we most often use now with this class of images, "Photograms." They were interested in photography as a medium of light and form, not sentiments or personal feelings that are the concerns of other art forms. Lotte Jacobi called her lyrical abstractions, made in the 1940s and 1950s, "photogenics." *

Davis gives instructions for making a photogram, but I think I’ll avoid all the darkroom, exposure stuff and shoot for a “digital “ photogram.

Monday, January 09, 2006

What was I thinking?

It seemed so wonderful in my mind, meaning the remodeled kitchen . My refrigerator was located in a very cramped spot and I found it hard to deal with. For years I put up with it and then I finally came up with a solution. Too much to go into here, but it involved moving a door to the window location and making a new water connection and electrical outlets. Now that the move has been made I’m having regrets. It looks like a white elephant has moved into my kitchen! I keep telling myself I’ll get use to it and love it, but so far it hasn’t worked. I’ve cut up the base cabinets that I wanted removed to make more space. I lost a lot of valuable storage, (ugh!) so I’m trying to create some overhead cabinets out of them. I have no idea what I’m doing so it’s taking me forever to move forward with finishing them. I guess my disappointment has dampened my enthusiasm and vision. Back to the drawing board!

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Ikea Motivation

Today I made my first visit to Ikea, the Swedish budget furnishings warehouse. It opened this past year and I’ve been looking forward to taking the time to visit. UNBELIEVABLE! I could have bought half the stuff in there. It really appealed to my thrifty, arty personality. I couldn’t resist some of the lighting fixtures for my kitchen, which is still a work in progress. The whole experience renewed my motivation to finish the job! So my first goal of 2006 is to get back to the tools and get it done as I have only 45 days to test my new purchases.
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