Kate's journal has a sub-theme of Frida in San Francisco, and she requested that we all include some iconic image in our work. I used two: the Golden Gate Bridge and a cable car.
I did a simple background on watercolor paper with color washes, pastels, inks and mica sprays. I then did a very loose sketch of the bridge and went over the pencil lines with an embossing ink pen. Copper perfect pearls was brushed over that to give the bridge a kind of vague, through the fog look. At least that's what I'm telling myself.
The cable car is a photo I found in google images, printed it out on plain copy paper, did some fussy cutting and a lot of pencil work to add some shading. Diego and Frida were cut from a copy of one of her paintings. I recall that Frida's father referred to the couple as "the elephant and the dove," so I decided to place that particular bird on Diego's head. The cactus is a stamp. Because Frida often included roots, vines, leaves, etc. in her work, I added those, and die cut them from a variety of papers. Now, off to Casa Azul.
Janet created a portfolio style book, and asked that we include anything we think would have been found in Casa Azul, the home Frida and Diego shared in Mexico. Well, I know Frida loved her elaborate folkloric dresses, and there had to be many in her closet, so that gave me the idea for my pages.
The title page:
The blue strip was created by spraying denim color wash over a prima border stencil. After it dried I went over the whole thing with faded jeans distress ink. Then, of all things, I used a Stampin' Up wheel stamp of skulls over the top of it. The area next to it is a collage of spanish text and sewing pattern paper, covered with a light wash of gesso and then peeled paint distress stain. The wonderful letters are from an out of production stamp set, designed by Tim Holtz. I love that set and am lucky to have snagged it when I did.
Whenever I'm starting a new round robin journal project I begin by gathering together materials I think I may use.....papers, collage sheets, charms, postcards, etc. In my Frida box I found a strand of beads, handmade and of very colorful fabric. I have no memory of where they came from, though I think someone sent them to me with a swap. There is something very folksy about them and I thought they looked great highlighting the switch from the border to the rest of the page. Plus, they echo the colors in the dress on the next page (that's me being arful and design conscious, LOL). Speaking of which:
So, this is what is in Frida's closet. For this background I did a series of the border stencils, each in a different color, by doing one at a time, masking off the surrounding areas. Then I stuck some spanish text in between the border strips, and gave everything except the dark blue border a light wash of gesso.
The dress was created entirely from scraps from one of my many boxes of leftover pieces from previous projects. The top is actually very fragile vintage wallpaper that I received as a RAK from my friend Angie. I love that paper and have used it many times before. The ruffle right below it was made from some paper towel that had been used to clean up after some spraying. The bottom of the dress went through a few stages before I was happy with it. It started out as a piece of sticky back canvas. I covered it with a collage of text and then a coat of fired brick distress stain. Then, using sharpie poster paint markers I drew a design similar to the one on the wallpaper top. Some pom pom and bead trims finished it off.
The dress in on a wire hanger (with apologies to Joan Crawford, wherever she may be), and it is on a rod cut from a chop stick. The lizard is a shrink plastic piece I did a while back, and I just knew it would eventually find its way onto one of these pages. It was rubbed with embossing ink, then covered with gold UTEE before shrinking with a heat gun. While it was still hot I sprinkled some beadazzles (a Suze Weinberg product that is a combination of micro beads and glitter) over top.
Now, I'm off to work on Maxine's Frida book.....with a theme of Day of the Dead. Awesome!