Sunday, July 1, 2007

Pro Bono

It all started with a spoon.This souvenir spoon was purchased by my friend Bonnie and her husband Travis on their honeymoon. As they are two very sensible people, they were determined to take the honeymoon of their dreams by flying to Scotland while sticking to a (smallish) budget. To this end, many of their lunches consisted of pb&j's. This spoon served double duty as a memento and a peanut butter spreader.Bonnie asked if I would help her frame this spoon, which seemed like a simple enough project. When she brought it to my house, she also brought a box of other Scotland-related stuff. Ticket stubs, maps, brochures, etc. When I sunk my hands into these bits of paper, I knew that this would no longer qualify as a simple project.At first I thought I would do something like these shadowboxes from Real Simple. But I felt like the frame I was using was too small to keep the mementos in their whole form. I had to cut them up. And cut them up I did.

I ended up making three small collages, consisting only of the items found in the Scotland box. Each collage was placed in a small window-envelope thingy, which I found at Michaels (Martha Stewart Craft line, how I love thee). The collage above features a map from a Hadrian's Wall brochure, some map scraps, and a picture of Mary that I took from a church bulletin. I hope it isn't sacrilegious to use her in this way. Not having grown up Catholic, I am highly unfamiliar with the ideas and etiquette surrounding the Virgin Mary. But I thought she made this little piece look beautiful.

This collage features some tickets, a carefully cut picture of some castle ruins, and more map. I was trying hard to stick to an overall color scheme of green and brown.

This one has another castle, a bit of receipt (or mini-statement, as it were), some Scottish clouds cut from a photograph, more tickets, and, well, just lots of stuff. I especially like the little crest at the bottom of this one. The swords are from the packaging of a tie that Travis thought I might use and Bonnie thought for sure I wouldn't, and the couple's initials are cut from a ticket to Edinburgh. I saw that pretty E and knew I had to use it.

This project ended up taking me most of last week. Once I got going on the intricate cutting of the collages, I couldn't stop. I wasn't sure how to attach the spoon, so I decided to leave it in its original box, which got a paint job and textured green paper for the background.
Bonnie also brought a tiny (empty) jar of preserves and some coins. They were glued on to the background.It felt good to work on a project for a friend, a gift. It is good to have a respite from making things only for the shop. A good friend, also an artist, told me once she believes art should be generous. So here's my stab at generosity, for Bonnie and Travis.Bonnie, it's done. Come pick it up! It turned out quite differently from what we originally discussed. I hope you like it.


Bonnie said...

I love it! I love it! I love it! It's beautiful and there's absolutely nothing wrong with using the BVM. Good call, well done, absolutely gorgeous!

Maiasaura said...

phew. i am so relieved. :-)
hope to see you soon.

Colin said...

Laura, I fully intend to hire you for some serious collage work in the near future. Other collagists weap when they compare their work to yours.

Colin said...

weep, I mean.