Wednesday, July 14

hello again

I've been busy with some temporary work (which has become a good source of fun crazy-people stories). It was only supposed to last a few weeks, but here it is mid-July and I'm still plugging away. Not that I'm complaining, mind you, but I wanted to explain that I have to strike while the iron's hot.

Today, however, is humid and gross and drizzly, which means it's disgusting out, so I'm avoiding the outdoors by sitting in front of a fan and unloading images from my camera. This has the added benefit of being a quiet activity, which means it won't wake up the birds, who are still sleeping in their cages. (Yes, plural birds. We rescued another cockatiel, because we didn't have enough projects going on.)

Here are just a couple things I've been working on lately.

These were for a handmade notebook swap through a mail art group I belong to on We were to mail the notebooks as they were, so I had to think of a way to keep them shut in the mail. Then I realized that I usually have the problem of keeping it shut in my bag, too, so I designed my partners' notebooks with a little flap to protect the pages inside from the postal system's machinery and their errant pens, lip balms, and other purse whatnots. I used color-coordinated rubber bands to keep them from "flapping about like a wounded bird," as one swapper put it, with the intent for them to continue using the rubber bands as a fastening device.

Su's a big postal nerd like me, so I made for her a collage of pretty postmarks on typically American stamps to go on the back of the notebook. The front I designed to look like an airmail envelope using a mostly steady hand and trusty Sharpies.

Lisa enjoys public transit, so I covered her notebook with a Metrobus schedule and stamped it with a bicycle stamp of my own design and carving. Among the themed sides of postage stamps, I also snuck in a vintage one featuring honoring the 200th anniversary of the "treaty of amity and commerce" between Sweden and the U.S., which means she gets Ben Franklin on both sides of her notebook. Lucky gal.

"Mr. Franklin, I would say you are probably one of the sexiest presidents ever." --Michael Scott

The insides are all mixed papers and maps, along with a few little envelopes and other pockets into which I tucked surprises (like "par avion" postal stickers for Su and Metro tickets and found stickers for Lisa).

Both ladies have now received their notebooks (intact!) so I feel safe sharing without ruining their surprise. :)

The other thing I've been working on are these sweet Gocco-ed bicycle map prints.

I drew the bicycle and burned it onto a Gocco screen. Then I cut down a bajillion maps or so into 5x7 pages, then screened the bicycles onto them. (I also did them onto colored cardstock, but I'm more excited about maps because, well, I'm a nerd.) I have them available for a bunch of cities, including Portland, eastern Canada, Dublin, Lourdes, Hamburg, Istanbul, Lisbon, San Francisco, Copenhagen, and of course, the mid-Atlantic/DC-MD-VA region. Plus, sweet jesus, they're only $15! What are you waiting for?

Let's hope my next update won't be 7+ months in the making, shall we?