This is the first in my series of posts about people and things that have influenced my artwork. I am starting with credit to my daughter Sonja. She deserves a large share of the credit (or blame) for my transformation from hobby quilter/sewer to an artist - who is now pretty comfortable referring to myself that way.
As many, probably most of you know, Sonja and I have worked together for many years. We started Friends Fabric Art back in 2002 and have managed to keep it together in one form or another ever since then. When I moved to Virginia, we thought we'd have to give up on this formal partnership, until we conceived of this blog as a way to keep it alive. (And more recently we added our Etsy shop which carries work from both of us.) Through the blog we have a way to communicate with each other and with you about our art. (As those of you with children know, uninterrupted phone conversations about adult issues are almost impossible with a toddler in the house.)
After being so far apart for a while we found we needed still more connection and a way to share the process of making art not just talking about it. I came up with the idea of doing a traveling journal. Sonja and I had been a group that did these many years ago and we thoroughly enjoyed it. Sonja liked the idea and she expanded it, suggesting that we involve Tyler as well. They like making art together and we certainly want to encourage his enjoyment of it. So we began. They did the first two pages and sent it to me for additions.
We have three pages so far. We are working in a board book with black pages. This is the first page. Sonja painted the swirl design over a page that had been "textured" with squares of glued on paper. I added the flower motif--from a hand-painted card that Sonja had given me. It was too beautiful to throw away. I thought the colors and motif coordinated well with this page - and Sonja had said she thought the page needed something.
Here's page 2 - Tyler's page. He loves to create collages with a glue stick and bits of colored paper that Sonja cuts up for him. I filled in some of the empty space on the page with pieces cut from a (used) card that I had made. The colors and textures in the card seemed to pick up on the bits of paper that Tyler had used. We'll see if Sonja adds any touches in the next round.
Here's page 3 - that I started with bits from each of us. I cut motifs from Tyler's artwork - painting and coloring - for the background. I then added the stylized leaves, again cut from hand-made cards that Sonja had given me. Lastly, keeping with the leaf theme, I added the skeleton leaves. We have each contributed to the page.
The journal will go in the mail to Sonja later tonight and I'll wait anxiously to see what will come back.
In my next post I share details of another joint artwork that Tyler and I have created together. Remember that you can sign up on our home page if you'd like to receive emailed notices of new posts.
Mother & daughter, Ann Lee & Sonja Lee-Austin share their joys and struggles in their art and lives.