Aug 29, 2010

introducing ... Altered Alchemy

the time has come for me to announce a project that i've been hatching for a month now. in the midst of difficult times, upheavals, financial instabilities and physical changes that has been happening in my life, i found solace in art. art has not helped me solve my problems, but it served as a sanctuary that i could escape to, a dimension where all worldly matters seem to fade and where only me and my world exist.

and i feel my art has evolved.

i don't know why it feels different, but it does. for one, it feels more matured. my art has "grown up". it feels deeper, a little darker, older ... it feels like i've traveled way back to the beginning, to genesis. but most of all ... it feels not bogged down by principals. i do less conscious thinking and just allow my being to roam (probably with the desire to escape). i feel freedom. i desire freedom perhaps.

having said and felt all of that, i realized that i have outgrown pimp and paint. it's a little sad but it's something that is inevitable. i am thinking of slowly phasing out my pimp and paint etsy shop ... tho part of me still wants to keep that innocence. i dunno, i'm undecided as of now.

phasing out pimp and paint doesn't mean going out of business. no ... on the contrary, i am hatching a new phoenix from the ashes.

and from the ashes ... i introduce to you
ALTERED ALCHEMY @ Etsy

www.alteredalchemy.etsy.com

if you have the time, i would really appreciate it if you could pay me a visit there :)

i also want to thank you all of you for supporting my work thus far, i don't think i could have ever done this without all your love and encouragement :)

Aug 27, 2010

grunge time ...

ahh ... a new week is coming to an end once again! it's amazing how time flies ... the older you get, the faster it flies ... "time on turbo" i call it! UGH! there's just not enough time in a day to do all the things you want to do, there's not enough time in a lifetime actually ...

with all this limited time ... it's a good thing i managed to make one creation for 2 challenges!

this week's creation is for simon says stamp and show's "tim holtz inspired" and inspiration avenue's "the power of words". two separate challenges, that have somehow combined my life philosophies and my creative style.

a handbound journal in the style of grunge ... i hope ;) the covers are a hodge podge of various papers with words ... newspaper cuttings, pages from an old novel, pages from an old dictionary and a couple of printed words in different type fonts. these are stuck together and then distressed using tim holtz's distressed inks which i love so much!

the clock face is my own illustration and printed on the paper hodge podge. a rusty washer (which i rusted myself *smug* ;) and an antique key all laced together with a rustic leather strap completes the look.

finally, a leather/denim spine to go with the grunge theme, cool black handtorn pages and an antique colored brass chain with a split heart as pagemarker :)

happy pimping! :)

Aug 22, 2010

coffee, tea and erm ... wheels ?

i've been meddling with some jewelry this week. made a couple of mixed media ones, experimenting actually, and they are very unlike the pieces that i've been doing with my polymer clay. since being preggie, i've refrained from cooking polymer clay and playing with resin in case they were toxic to the baby. i've missed rolling my clay in the pasta roller ... but i guess i can still twist and hammer my wires :)

fortunately, the pieces i made this week seem to fit into a couple of challenges amidst on bloggie land. first up, is inspiration avenue's weekly challenge "coffee or tea" ... well, i normally prefer tea to coffee, but this time i'll be indulgent and go for both!

may i present to you, Book of Eli ...

a miniature book i made using tea AND coffee stained papers (top right photo). and see that beautiful slim model? well, it's not me ;( ... that's my niece who's come to stay for a while and her first task is to model for her preggie auntie :)


the next challenge is at the three muses, themed "wheels" .

i give to you, Relic ...

the "wheels" on here are clock cogs which i salvaged from an antique brass clock.

i realize my tastes have changed quite a bit ... perhaps it's the hormones? but i guess these make me happy for now :)

happy pimping! :)

Aug 19, 2010

being preggie ...

i have nearly forgotten what it was like to be pregnant. my older girl is 5 and i am 5 months pregnant once again :) the first trimester hasn't been particularly easy but i think my body feels at home now. all the tests that a "high risk" aka "not-too-young" preggie has to go thru, i went thru them ... even the amnio test where they would insert a giant needle into your bloated belly, and into the placenta to extract the amniotic fluid of the baby. then the fluid would be sent to the lab and the chromosomes grown to check for signs of down syndrome. from the external probe that the dr used during this procedure, i can actually see the needle go in! the procedure takes about 10 minutes and there was one point, my little girl's hands were paddling towards the needle!! woah! talk about scary! and yes ... once the lab grows your baby's chromosomes, they also know if it's an XX or an XY :) and llara kaye is totally thrilled to have a sister :)

there are many taboos for a preggie in a chinese family. of course i had forgotten most of them after a lapse of 5 years. nevertheless, mil is always at hand :) only the other day i was reminded by mil, that i mustn't do any cutting, sewing or gluing on the bed. i remember a story that my paternal grandma told me of a personal experience. when she was preggers with my uncle, there was one time she had forgotten all about not sewing in bed, she embroidered a sunflower on her pillowcase ... the sunflower had 13 petals. and when my uncle was born, he had 13 fingers! was it just a coincidence? well, obviously my grandma didn't think so... but we all know that's just a medical anomaly and can be rectified just as easily.

of course, there are other taboos, like no renovations (especially hammering) in the house, no moving to a new home and no moving the bed. all of which i did when i was 8 months pregnant with llara kaye. naturally, i didn't tell my mom or my mil until everything was done and we were nicely settled in the new home. the dirty looks we got! but i'm truly lucky to have quite a cool mil :) other mils would have blown their tops ... mine just shook her head ;) apparently a cleft lip or similar disfigurements might result from hammering ... hmmm ...

i've never quite understood what the reasons are, for all these taboos. i guess being 'taboos' you dun actually have to understand them, you just have to follow them. but me ... being a rebel, i dun really follow them. well not true ... i sorta 'choose' which ones to follow just to appease the older folks ;) like i would refuse to stop hammering my wires for my jewelry making. and then mil would reluctantly smile and say, "well ... as long as you don't hammer nails into the house walls" ... and for being so lenient on me, i would not dream of hammering nails into the wall ... just for her :)

pineapples are not allowed, apparently it encourages miscarriage. no scary movies, monkey movies and such, for fear the baby might turn out looking like the scary character or the monkeys in the movies. oh dear ... i've been watching plenty of edward cullen and true blood!! yikes!!

interesting isn't it, being a preggie in a chinese family :) well ... that's just half the story. wait till you hear what happens after the baby arrives ;) but i'll keep that for another post ... this is long enough already ...

well, i'm off to fetch llara kaye from kindie.
happy pimping! :)

Aug 10, 2010

"things with wings" challenge

i was nosing around in bloggie land and came across this wonderful new place called simon says stamp and show. the works featured there are totally inspiring! and what's more, they are holding their first weekly challenge this week "things with wings"... the theme brought a huge smile to my face :) i was so tickled! and man! have you seen a more awesome giveaway?! (no? ... go take a peek :)

all you have to do is create something according to the theme above, put it in your blog, link the post to theirs and wait :) closing date is 15th aug :)

so here's my 'thing' with wings :)

yup, it's a journal :)
continuing from my previous experiments with different paints ... the covers are painted in acrylics, spray paint and spattered with alcohol inks ... love watching the reaction of alcohol inks and water :)

the sides are embellished with a vintage poem with burnt edges, courtesy of maggie of the magpie's nest (thank you maggie :) and distressed with tim holtz's distressed inks. i just love his distress inks! if i weren't in poverty, i would buy the whole load of them!

my wing thing ... a vintage escutcheon of some sort with a pair of brass wings. and the broken heart ... air dry clay with a key imprint, then painted over with acrylics.

my little girl doesn't like it tho ... she says "mommy, the heart is broken! i want an unbroken heart!" and runs away sobbing. poor baby! but secretly ... i think she's just a drama queen! ;)

here's the romantic part ... Je t'aime ... but trapped behind rusted mesh wire. hmm... maybe my little girl had a reason to sob afterall ...

aha!! white pages!! finally ...
as always, the spine is leather and the signatures sewn on with nylon threads. the page marker is an antique brass chain with an ocean jasper bead hanging off it.

another "alchemy" journal to my collection ... and in the process of making some more ;)

happy pimping!

Aug 4, 2010

into the world of secrets and sorcery ...

my folk art teacher use to tell us that we should always buy art materials that are compatible to the paints we're working with. so since i've been painting with waterbase acrylics, i've been just buying stuff that are compatible with acrylics, be it base paints, varnishes, sealers, fixatives etc. so i guess what she said really stuck ...

but you know what, i realized that it's not necessarily true. i realized that you don't always have to work in compatible mediums. sometimes incompatibility can create amazing alchemy! last week i was looking through some videos on youtube and came across an australian artist, gary reef, who lives in the forests of norway. i was so mesmerized by the way he mixed and matched painting mediums and the fabulous results that came out of it. for instance, so many wonderful surfaces can result from using acrylics with spray paint! you may want to check out his tutorials on his channel on youtube ... CapricornArtist73

inspired by gary's work, i proceeded to do a couple of experiments myself. of course i ruined many covers in the process but finally, i am utterly delighted with the result of this journal ...

book of secrets ... inspired by the world of ancient magic and sorcery ... and the sorcerer's apprentice ;) and you know what ... i think this is worthy of inspiration avenue's challenge this week "other worlds" :)

(back of the journal)
if you look closely, the blue blotches are created by alcohol ink and methylated spirit on acrylic paint and water. the spreading of the alcohol ink was so fun to watch when in contact with acrylics and water :) gary also reminded me of highlights and shadows in one of his videos ... which i had forgotten to include in my work for so long!

the white part on the top of the cover is spray paint over acrylics and then distressed. the image of the clock is a transfer using transparency film (also from gary's tutorial), but instead of using a gel medium as suggested by gary, i simply used water (as shown by angie of artangel ;) ... yup, i still remember that tutorial)

my focal motif is an assemblage of a large brass gear which i salvaged from an old clock, my self-rust washer and a dragonfly charm.

and for the finishing touches, black paper handtorn pages, sewn on a leather spine and a unique page marker made out of antique brass chain and a rusted key :)

all in all, i think i really love how this journal turned out!

now before i leave, just wanna show you my make-shift photography station :) LOL!

happy pimping! :)