Tina Baine's article....

Tina Baine writes a very interesting column for the Santa Cruz Sentinel. She searches out and talks about new and unusual "how to projects." Whether it's painted, taped, glued, sewn, hammered, quilted or knitted, Tina is trying her hand with great success. She especially likes to turn old materials into new useful items. Tina just happens to be a valuable member of the Aromas Hills Artisans. Today I am posting one of her recent articles where she talks about three craft books. I hope you will join her on her blog, tinablaine.blogspot.com and enjoy her colomn in the newspaper. Tina writes......

.......I decided to seek my own artistic inspiration from some unlikely sources. I chose three new books as my point of departure, and created three crafty projects. Here are the books—all of which I highly recommend—and the results:
"The artist is a receptacle for emotions that come from all over the place: from the sky, from the earth, from a scrap of paper, from a passing shape, from a spider's web."—Pablo Picasso

Book #1: PARIS PORTRAITS by Harriet Lane Levy
When she died in 1950, Levy left the San Francisco Museumof Modern Art a trove of art, including La Fille aux YeuxVerts (The Girl with Green Eyes) which she bought fromMatisse in 1908. I used Web images of this painting and severalothers to create Matisse-inspired pendants on Scrabble tilesor in small frames.My favorite movie of 2011 is Woody Allen’s “Midnight in Paris” in which Owen Wilson’s character is magically transported back 100 years to a romanticized Paris where he meets and hangs out with the likes of Picasso, Matisse, Degas, Dali and many other artistic giants of the era. San Francisco native Harriet Lane Levy had her own real-life close encounters with Matisse, Picasso and other legendary artists when she and Alice B. Toklas, joined their friend Sarah Stein in Paris in the summer of 1908. Levy recalls her 2-year Paris adventure in, “Paris Portraits: Stories of Picasso, Matisse, Gertrude Stein, and Their Circle,” a beautiful little memoir that has not been published in its entirety until now. In it, she recalls the eccentricities of her Paris friends, her regret at not buying a $50 Picasso from Sarah Stein, and learning to love modern art—Henri Matisse’s paintings in particular. Like Woody Allen’s movie, “Paris Portraits” is an enchanted portal to a time of unequaled charm and luminosity.

Project #1: An audacious pendant
When Harriet Lane Levy died in 1950, she left the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art a trove of art, including “La Fille aux Yeux Verts” (The Girl with Green Eyes) which, when her friends declined it, she bought from Matisse in 1908 while in Paris. Like Harriet Levy, I didn’t initially take to Matisse’s modernist style; but the joyous, audacious color in his portraits of women gradually won me over. So, I made pendants using printed images from Matisse and Matisse-inspired paintings, reduced to a size tiny enough to fit on the back of a Scrabble tile. There are several websites and YouTube tutorials that show you how. Just Google “Scrabble tile pendant” or “resin jewelry” for instructions.
"The torpid artist seeks inspiration at any cost, by virtue or by vice, by friend or by fiend, by prayer or by wine."--Ralph Waldo Emerson

Book #2: JUST MY TYPE: A BOOK ABOUT FONTS by Simon Garfield
Simon Garfield likes to tackle topics that make people wrinkle up their nose and ask, “How could that be a good book?” Among other historical topics, he’s written about postage stamp collecting and the color mauve. Reading his latest book “Just My Type: A Book About Fonts,” I found myself unexpectedly absorbed in the history and evolution of the ampersand, the controversial switch by Ikea from Futura to Verdana, and a typeface called Gotham, that has been embraced by both President Obama and Sarah Palin. Fonts carry a wide range of subliminal messages that go way beyond mere words, and Garfield has wisely included lots of visual examples to demonstrate the subtle powers of type.
“Retrofonts” by Gregory Stawinski is a good follow-up that allows you to simply bask in the lovely inventiveness of over 400 classic 19th and 20th century fonts. It includes a CD with 222 featured fonts, although many of these can be downloaded for free from the internet.

Book #3: TRASH ORIGAMI: 25 PAPER FOLDING PROJECTS REUSING EVERYDAY MATERIALS by Michael G. LaFosse and Richard Alexander. Origami can be complex and intimidating at times, but the projects in this book are refreshingly simple and practical. The authors show you how to make useful objects such as boxes, checkers sets, photo cubes, bowls and envelopes out of found papers. At a time of year when calendars, catalogs, gift wrap and greeting cards are quickly filling up your recycling bin, Trash Origami offers these paper products—and just about any other kind of waste paper—a great second life.


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