Sunday, January 6, 2008

All the leaves are gone

The holidays are over, my boys are back in school, and I must admit that I love the calm and quiet after the hectic and  bustling days around Christmas. I am cleaning, setting up my new studio, trying to get organized for the new year. There is plenty to do like finishing up a custom bag for my friend Carrie, and creating a special piece for an upcoming fundraiser for the Artisan Center of Virginia. But I will not do much printing in the next few months, since almost all the leaves are gone. 

I use a technique called leaf printing, where real leaves are used as everchanging printing plates. Fabric paint is applied to the back of the leaf, where the veins are most prominent, and the leaf  is then pressed onto the fabric using tissue paper and a brayer. This makes each impression unique, and slightly different than the next - even if the same leaf is used both times. I love this technique and my art is built around the magic, mystique, and sometimes unpredictability of these beautiful prints.

Its a bit anxiety provoking to know that certain designs can't be reproduced for a while, but it also makes me realize that in times of mass production and busyness, there are still some things that can't be hurried along. 

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