Sunday, July 26, 2009

American Eagle Jeans

I need to remember not to do Shell Game with American Eagle anymore. They require ID when you return something. As an attempt at subterfuge, I gave them my old college ID, which doesn't list any address, and then when they asked for my address, I changed one of the numbers when dictating it. Not a terribly smooth deception.

One thing I did like at American Eagle, was that although I didn't notice it until I'd taken them home, the cut of jeans that I chose to alter was called "ARTIST". Someone suggested that I should have added a question mark after the word, but unfortunately I'd already returned them.

Perhaps the ARTIST jeans got me in a literal mood. I made a flock of bird silhouettes cut out of denim, which I then sewed into the inside of the pant legs. This proved to be some of my most challenging seamstressing yet - instead of sewing into a lining or a seam, I was sewing directly into a single layer of fabric.

I used a dark color of thread and very small stitches, and without knowing what you were looking for, it was very difficult to perceive my work from the outside. To the right is a picture of the pant leg turned right side out after my alterations, and perhaps if you look carefully you can see a couple of greenish dots (one toward the bottom left of the photo is most apparent) which are my stitches.

Here's a picture with the legs inside out, of the denim birds close up. After sewing them into the jeans I felt like the denim on denim look was a little more subtle than I wanted, so I went back and painted some shadows and highlights on them with acrylic, to give them that ARTIST touch.

Here is a full view of the completed pants turned inside out. The flock seems to be moving from one leg to another - and here's what I mean when I say I was feeling literal - as I made them I imagined them to be a flock of smaller birds, hiding from the eponymous Eagle.

My Shell Game garments tend to fall into two distinct categories. There are the more representational or graphic ones, like these jeans, or the pants where I added lips, or the tiny acrylic paintings sewn into seams, and there are the more sculptural / structural pieces, like the pants with elongated pockets, or shoulder pads added at the knees, or pockets lined with pink fake fur. I am curious: do you have a preference for one vein over another?

Thursday, July 23, 2009

The Genre Explored

I happened, quite by accident, upon this website the other day:

Which contains a collection of stories illustrated by Arthur Jones with drawings on post-it notes. This piqued my interest for what else is being done in the post-it note genre. A few google searches revealed:

The emphasis for both of the above seems to be on post-its as a way of limiting word count, and perhaps as a way of disrupting the feeling of preciousness that can make writing difficult.

And here's a visual post-its piece at UCSC that uses the sticky squares as pixels:

Here's a really odd office supply website (there is a version of lolcatz done with chairs that I kept finding in various connected pages) that has posted a nice collection of mosaics made out of post-its.

Oh, and wait, here is yet another cool Web Urbanist post that has quite a few nice examples of Mosaic type works:

I have yet to find any pieces displayed or referenced that seem very close to my post-it note books in concept or execution, which makes me happy in that way that I probably should try to rise above or something.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

New Post-its for a New Book: The Little Stranger

I've finished my symbiotic story for the new Sarah Waters book. Unlike her previous novels The Little Stranger has no lesbian romance whatsoever. So, in a move that I hope doesn't suffer for being obvious, I've inserted a lesbian love story. Or, to be more precise, a lesbian flirtation story.

Since I've been feeling pretty uninspired when it comes to writing (still puzzling out what to add to the Mercedes Lackey book I checked out of the library over a month ago...) instead of creating a new story for the occasion I simply altered the first story that I wrote, for Hateship, Friendship, Courtship, Loveship, Marriage, substituting a girl protagonist for a boy - and of course changing the references to the host book that are part of the story. Changing the gender of a character in an already written story was an interesting exercise. The primary challenge was differentiating between the characters when they were suddenly both "she"s. I also changed both the characters appearances, but left their interactions pretty much the same. I'm curious if the scenario seems strained or not.

Here is the scan of my entire addition to the Sarah Waters novel.