This is one of the poems I wrote last week for my online poetry MOOC. I wrote a good bit of it before the assignment came out because I needed to do it for myself. To fit the assignment, I had to revise and add. This is the result. Not sure it’s done, but it’s what I submitted.
I know, it’s an image. Not very helpful. If you click on the image on this page, it will take you to the full-sized image, which is still kind of small. While pressing and holding the Ctrl key on your keyboard, also click the “+” key and it will zoom in a little more each time you click.
In honor of today’s premier of the book-turned-series A Handmaid’s Tale on Hulu, and in dishonor of the 2017 Iowa Republican legislators, here is the cover of an actual book called The Perfect Woman, published in 1903. The book has lots of “helpful” advice to women that might make its way into future artworks.
I removed the two original, badly damaged photos on the front and replaced it with my own painted image. I enhanced much of the original decorative aspects (some of which were nearly rubbed off) with new paint. I tore off the front from the shell of the book cover after I had done most of the painting, which really is not a good time to tear apart something that old. But it worked out for the most part.
And no, this is not a daily. I have been pondering what to do with the book for a long time (and still have more ideas I will use the content/pages for at some point). I worked on this cover over time—removing, adding, drawing, painting, etc. I could have (and still might) work on this cover more. It just seemed like today is an auspicious day to upload it for now.
14×22″ mixed media on paper (acrylic, map, marker, currency strips)
This has been a long time coming—just couldn’t get going on it or figure out what to do with it for months. I’m still not sure I like it, but as with the daily janes, I’m calling it for now. I drew the route of the Bakken pipeline through Iowa onto a state road map. Originally I thought I would keep the map of the contiguous counties intact, but it made for an awfully large piece and seemed to just be a map of the pipeline route. Then I had the idea to cut each county out, and to place them in such a way that the pipeline lines sort of formed N-O. I collaged those onto an already painted paper. I highlighted the route a little more, then collaged some currency strips onto the blue and painted those.
2.5″x3.5″ currency strips, marker on artist trading card
This was a short little project that turned out to be slightly more tedious than I thought it would be. After collaging the currency strips onto the card, I colored them with red marker. Then I colored in the blue area with marker. I first lettered the “stars” (look closer) with the image right-side-up. Upon further reflection (like, immediately upon finishing the writing), I thought it made more sense to have the image upside down and the star-lettering able to be read that way as well. So, I had to color over and re-do the stars.
Well, this is not a daily jane. It’s been hanging around for months in various stages, and resting for a few weeks. But I’m calling it done. What to name it is now the question. At first I thought the title would be “1984 / 2016,” but then I added some other writing and thought maybe it would be “2+2=5.” I actually haven’t decided for sure on the title.
Hmm, I guess I could call it the Bowling Green Massacre….
Instead of rolling acrylic paint onto this print block, I scraped it on to make the imprints. These are three side-by-side images from the same block. I then scraped some transparent raw sienna directly onto the paper after the prints were dry.
Initially I was thinking of this more as a bundling of grasses, but I started thinking of the sienna as oil in the grasses, and then thought of the shapes as snake-like, and then thought of the term “snake oil,” and that relates to what the oil companies are trying to sell the Iowa public regarding the “benefits” of the diagonal pipeline through Iowa. With the Utilities Board decision from yesterday fresh in my mind…that’s how I arrived at the title.
I was thinking about this last night, trying to think of a way to express my outrage and grief. Again. And then I just felt tired. This is my unsatisfactory effort for today. I drew the lettering onto the page with pencil, then went over the lines with marker. I painted and splattered paint onto the translucent vellum, then glued on black construction paper lines. I affixed the vellum to the lettered paper.
I do not understand why one person’s “right” so outweighs others’ rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. I do not understand why legislators cannot summon the will to do ANYTHING helpful and why they refuse to confront the fear-mongering and bluster. Enough is enough is enough is enough.
This is a photo I took at the Bakken Pipeline public comment hearing. The jars contain (on the left) oil and (on the right) Iowa soil. The speaker, Melanie Stall from Huxley, Iowa, made the point that oil doesn’t mix with agricultural soil. I couldn’t agree more. I didn’t doodle or draw during the hearing at all, just listened and kept track of the speakers. So I asked Melanie if I could take a photo of the jars and explained what I was doing. We positioned the jars on a (harder every minute) metal folding chair. I have a couple of detail views I considered using for the daily jane, but decided the two jars together told more of the story. And see my February daily jane about oil and water—although I wasn’t as explicit about the specific subject, the piece was inspired by the Bakken pipeline plans and filing my written objection with the Iowa Utilities Board in February.
Strips of currency (from the US Mint) are collaged in a tangle onto this paper. I was going to then paint a color in the background and into the money, but once I started with the paint I didn’t think I would like so much of it. So I decided to splatter it on instead. The election debate news cycle played into the color choice, but I didn’t set out to create something tied to it; it just sort of morphed into that. I went through a LOT of other titles for this piece after it was done—some of the potential titles were just too “cute” to use—before settling on a slightly larger theme. I’ll share a few of the rejected titles with you if you ask.
I had a piece for today already set, but this morning’s Supreme Court news made me quickly create this little piece. So happy, even to share this common (and rather crudely painted) symbol. Love and equality win!