Tag Archives: art

Kaleidoscope Collection

Kaleidoscopes have been around since 1815 when one Sir David Brewster developed them. Already at their time they proved to be a huge success, with over two hundred thousand sold in London and Paris in just three months. Still today they are fascinating for old and young.

A proper kaleidoscope is ‘an optical instrument in which bits of glass, held loosely at the end of a rotating tube, are shown in continually changing symmetrical forms by reflection in two or more mirrors set at angles to each other. A kaleidoscope operates on the principle of multiple reflection, where several mirrors are placed at an angle to one another. Typically there are three rectangular mirrors set at 60Β° to each other so that they form an equilateral triangle, but other angles and configurations are possible. The 60Β° angle generates an infinite regular grid of duplicate images of the original, with each image having six possible angles and being a mirror image or an unreversed image.’

I have always been fascinated by kaleidoscopes, and even more so by their endless mathematical possibilities. To me, they are mind-boggling and deeply soothing, probably as well as many kaleidoscope images do reflect mandalas.

Mandalas are deeply rooted in Indian religions but forms of them can also be found in christian architecture and art. Over the last century, mandalas have made their way into western psychological interpretation, thanks to Carl Jung, the pioneer in the exploration of the unconscious through art making.

While mandala and kaleidoscope inspired images in colouring books and the painting and drawing of them is popular in both art therapy classes and for the art lover at home, this digital age has also given us a gazillion of plug-ins and photo-effect apps to turn any and every photo into a multitude of artworks.

My kaleidoscope collection is inspired by the mathematical rules on which kaleidoscopes operate. They are all created from an original photograph, taken by me, and then applying a number of layer effects in Photoshop, to create an image that could represent itself if we were looking at the original scene through a kaleidoscope. Many times, my creations seem to be having a tendency to want to be mandalas, too, and as there is no doubt in the balancing-process of the psyche when it comes to mandalas, I let them. This is a creative process, each image is worked on individually, no pre-fabricated action or filter is being applied.

My aim is to create an image that gives the colours, the look and the feel of the original photograph.

I’m hoping that they appeal to everyone who loves science and art, and has a taste for the quirky.

Small prints are available through my store, but large acrylic prints have proven to be popular. They do look stunning in large, if I may say so myself πŸ™‚

kfuchsia

kbottlebrush

 

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Our take on String Art

The boys always had their name on their doors in one form or another. The old name signs were, well, old. So last school holidays we agreed to tackle making some new ones.

Being a house with lots of photography, I suggested including some photos. And the young one had found some pictures with big string art and wanted to somehow incorporate that idea as well. We had done some little card string art ages ago, so they are well familiar with the concept.

As with most creative things the most time is spent on planning and thinking and measuring. To fit the door, we were pretty much set in terms of size, so that was easy for a change. At the local hardware store we got some lovely thick, but light wood panels, and had them cut to the correct sizes. As we needed the initial M and the initial J, one wood panel had to be longer on the vertical side, the other on the horizontal side.

Both decided on the photos they would like to have included. It was my task to fit these photos on a sheet of paper that would fit their respective wood panel. I did this in Photoshop, naturally.Β  I desaturated the photos a lot, left only a hint of colour, I wanted the look quite graffic.

One’s favourite colour is blue, the other one’s is red, so the colours of string were easily decided on, too.

I found nails with a nice head and the appropriate length. The idea was to have the nails very sparingly around the board, it was merely to outline the initial, and gaps were meant to remain. The nails also were meant to avoid people’s heads and faces. I cut out the initials on large sheets of white paper, to use as a guide.

The photo collages were printed on normal paper, and simply pasted onto the wood panels with Mod Podge, being very careful to smooth the Mod Podge with a sponge, rather than a brush. After several layers of Mod Podge (and a lot of drying in between) I applied a couple of layers of glossy sealer.

Once that was dry, we placed the cut out paper initials on each wood panel and strategically hammered the nails (avoiding heads) gently in regular intervals. This was fun, but one has to be careful because missing the nail means hitting the photo collage πŸ™‚

Last step was wrap the string around the nails. It took a few attempts to get it all around and fill the gaps, without filling them too much.

And there you have it: our take on string artΒ  πŸ™‚

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Clean-up Art

The recent clean-up of my studio let me `find` a great many things for which I had great craft and art ideas. One thing I found was the large and sturdy shoe box of my husband’s work boots, which was filled with seashells, rocks, beach glass.

When we moved to the coast the kids were very little. And as all little (and possibly very many big) kids they LOVED collecting seashells. It was a new thing and exciting and one way to spend time at the beach, especially in the beginning when they needed to be eased into this new thing, the ocean, which was loud and wild and a bit scary at times.

As this shoe box naturally contained the best and most beautiful shells, sea glass and rock pieces and pebbles ever collected, something had to be done with them.

With the help of a plain old lattice piece from the hardware store and a lot of Liquid Nails, all these special beauties found their place on our new garden artwork.
Once the Liquid Nails were dry and our fingers cleaned from this extraordinary sticky stuff, a coat of outdoor suitable clear sealer was applied.
Now it decorates the most boring side of our garden and makes us happy every time we look at it.

Note: This post is not a call to action for depleting coastal shorelines of seashells and/or rocks. All these shells were collected in a space of about eight years, which puts it in perspective. If you intend to collect seashells from a beach, you should check with local council, as it is illegal to remove ‘anything’ from very many beaches in Australia.

SeashellLatice1

SeashellLatice