Happy Poetry Month! Sharing a Vintage Mixed Media/Found Poem Piece…

 

vertical for blog heart poems c I hope you are having a Wonderful Poetry Month!  In my corner of the virtual world, the Kidlitosphere, bloggers and poets are celebrating all month long with fun and inspiring projects.  You can find a roundup by the terrific Jama Kim Rattigan at Jama’s Alphabet Soup.

One of these years I’ll have it together to do something beyond a few special posts on my robynhoodblack.com blog in April. Like last year, I’m participating in the Progressive Poem today and will host Poetry Friday this coming Friday.

But I did sneak over to the studio to finish a little project I’ve been wanting to make for weeks. (I was “homebound” in early April finishing some freelance writing assignments and hosting company.) This little framed mixed media piece features highlighted text from CROWN JEWELS – OR GEMS OF LITERATURE, ART AND MUSIC, compiled by Henry Davenport Northrop, D. D., copyright 1887 by J. R. Jones. The original text was given a glossy acrylic wash and boasts a vintage heart key, a snip of vintage lace, and a small fancy vintage watch hand from France.

heart poems close up cIt says:

life

contains

heart-poems.

 

 

The frame is one of four I found in an antique shop a few years ago. It’s about 4 and 1/2 by 5 inches – wooden, made in Italy.  It has the loveliest handpainted turquoise color, with antique (very antique-y looking now!) white paint as well.  It’s full of character (slight imperfections), and I kept the little triangle brass hanger attached at the top.

I was tempted to keep it, as I rather like the simple message this old text yielded.  But I also love it when someone comes along and says a piece like this speaks to them, or they have the perfect person in mind to give it to.  So I listed it in my Etsy shop.

heart poems with hand c

Whether it sells quickly or hangs around a long while, I wish its sentiment for you always:  that your life is full of heart-poems!  Happy Poetry Month.

Art Break Wednesday – Poetry Month, Austin Kleon, Found Poems

poetry-month-2013-logo

Happy Poetry Month!  Because I’m a poet as well as a visual artist, I especially love April.

About this time last year, with a couple of Atlanta writing buds,  I got to hear and meet New York Times bestselling author Austin Kleon.  Sponsored by the Georgia Center for the Book, he spoke at the DeKalb County Public Library about his book, STEAL LIKE AN ARTIST – 10 Things Nobody Told You About Being Creative.  Ready for more black and white graphics?

StealLikeAnArtist

You might know writer and artist Kleon from his 2010 NEWSPAPER BLACKOUT:

cover-375-245x367 newspaper blackout austin kleon

dedication page Austin Kleon 2012 RHB(I was happy that he signed both of my books with his signature arrow-through-the-head image.)

 

Do click over to his blog to check out his work.  He’s a warm, funny, engaging speaker addressing creativity in the digital age.  He’s also a new dad (awwwww…!) and presents common sense ideas about creating in uncommonly understandable terms.

Robyn with Austin Kleon 4 2012

 

 

He’s spoken to audiences at Pixar, Google, and The Economist, to name a few organizations.  Intrigued?  Check out his TEDx Talk.  His work has been featured on NPR’s Morning Edition, PBS Newshour, and in The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal.

One of my favorite things about his books is the introduction to NEWSPAPER BLACKOUT.  The book contains dozens of “redacted” poems created with a permanent marker and newspaper articles.  You’ll have to check out his blog to see examples!  Anyway, in the intro, Kleon gives us an abbreviated history of this type of poetry – stretching back more than 250 years!  As a lover of found poetry (my first publications in an anthology came in THE ARROW FINDS ITS MARK – A Book of Found Poems  edited by Georgia Heard and illustrated by Antonie Gullioppé, Roaring Brook Press, 2012), I was hooked on this surprisingly rich history as well as on the poems.  Why not try some yourself?

The few found poem collages I’ve made for my art business and my Etsy shop have found buyers these past few months (Yay!  Thanks, Buyers!), so I’m conjuring up some more.  Here’s a peek at one just done – when the glue finishes drying (!) I’ll take some real photos and list it tomorrow.  I always start with a real page from a vintage book.  This one is from p. 47 of A LITERARY PILGRIMAGE, Seventh Edition, by Dr. Theodore F. Wolfe, J. B. Lippincott Company, Philadelphia: 1896.  (Such a lovely laid texture on those pages!)  I use the real page but photocopy it to work out the found poem before I paint over the original text with gouache, leaving only the bits I want for the poem unpainted.

discarded stanzas in process RHB

Once the poem emerges and the paint dries, I attach to a prepared substrate (background surface I’ve already painted – Canson matboard in this case) and embellish with vintage metal elements.  I’ve been waiting for just the right piece to use this twisted black piece on (from an Eastern European Etsy dealer!) – it reminds me of a figure, specifically, a Kokopelli type figure playing his flute.  A prankster and storyteller, I think of him as a poet, too, and he seemed to fit here beside the “preface” line of “footsteps lightly print the ground.” – a line from Thomas Gray on this page.

discarded stanzas image adj RHBWritten out, the found poem would look like this:

Discarded Stanzas

the poet’s footsteps lightly print the ground

what was

the transcending quality of

such stanzas

divinest poetry

of a noble soul

on which

bereft mortals meditate

on the way to

darkness

discarded stanzas framed RHB

For a look at my process making another found poem collage, click here.

Thanks for stopping by, and wishing you a month full of art AND poetry!

(Thurs. Update – Listed this new found poem collage in my Etsy shop.) :0)