With a CanoScan 8800F scanner in the house for the last month, I’ve been scanning slides and family photos, editing with Adobe Photoshop and making slideshow presentations to burn onto CD’s.
The scanner gives me access to all the slides that always lived in the box at my Grandparents’ house, first cupboard on the left in the living room, top shelf. And if we were good, my sister and I could look at them in the viewer.
Looking at those slides now digitized, thinking of the technology I access now and the technolgy of then–our world (my world) has certainly come a long way since the late 1950’s! And somethings are just the same–I still like to draw. Its just the tools that change, not the joy in the creative connections!
I’ve done a slideshow for my friend Margie’s family reunion too. (Take a look at her freshly updated glass art webpage here.) Her family brought photos dating back to the 1920’s, and we scanned them right there at the reunion, as well as getting pictures of the event. Later, I put them all on a slideshow cd that she can distribute to the whole family–those that were able to come and those that were not! Its great to be able to better access the past while we still have the memories of those around us available to tell stories about the pictures, and identify the people, times and places.
When I went to school the first time, it was A Very Big Thing to be allowed to learn to use the ELECTRIC typewriter. The mimeograph and ditto machines did not allow for “undo” or editing….
Now I have computers and digital tools available to me, and I am going back to school to learn how to better use them. This will no doubt continue to change how I am able to do my work in the future, and I’m looking forward to it! I’m also looking forward to using slides and pictures of past work and using those new tools to present things in new ways. I’m starting with pictures of Madame & Her Shady Ladies dolls in minature sets that were taken by Bobby Grieser in 1992, before I had my digital camera or computer. Now I can use them! You can see more of them at Aunt Acid’s blog, and there’ll be a page and even a calendar later. I’m looking forward using them alot in this coming year of 2009. Hard to think that we’re more than halfway through that first month already, and so much going on! Here’s a view of one of the ladies. She’s about 8 inches tall, and shown with a paper and epoxy resin fan made by my friend Elaine.
Do you remember being a kid (or a college student) and learning in school about how January is named after the two-faced god Janus who looks forward and backward in time? It seems very fitting to me that while working towards the future, I’m also having a wonderful wintertime reunion right now with my own past. (I think Einstein was right, about time!)
With the use of a new scanner that is equipped to convert film negatives and slides, I am going through boxes and boxes of prints and slides and getting reacquainted both with my own childhood and my early work. Seen here is a polymer clay mask representing “Winter”. I’ve got a new web page up on how to make snowflakes, click the link to visit and see more! This mask and the snowflakes shown below by Dawn Naylor were both first seen in the book “Celebrations With Polymer Clay”.
My husband and collaborator Bryan has been doing the same review and reformat thing in an auditory way with his pod-cast series “My Life In Sound” which archives the first quarter century of his musical output. He’s been playing guitar, keyboards, drums and synthesizers in musical loops all the while that I’ve been working on polymer clay projects. And we all use the computer in turns, including the children that we somehow managed to beget and raise at the same time everything else was getting done. They are creative too…just imagine!
I’m finishing up or reformatting projects that were started a long time ago too, working in the warmest room of the house and having fun. I’ve gotten family slide shows put together, and added some new pages to the Polyclay Gallery website. I’m also updating existing pages there at the site and getting ready to start school at my local community college to learn more about the programs and tools that will important in web page design and all my upcoming publishing and Internet projects.
Snowflakes by Dawn Naylor
Like polymer clay, using my other PC requires me to pay attention to what’s been done in the past as well as keep a close eye on the new. New clay formulations, new ways of manipulating the clay, new software and hardware, and ways to improve on using it all are the challenges for the upcoming year. Along with survival and all that too!
Snow Mask digitally altered
And along the way, I’m enjoying the ways I can use one with the other, polymer clay and personal computer, old work and new work. Sometimes I just let myself play with them, rather than having a fixed idea that I try to achieve.
Here’s an image of the same polymer clay mask, when I play a bit with the file in Adobe Photoshop. Using the filters and experimenting gives me a little experience with what the tools can do. I’m looking forward to my classes in Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator because being self-taught means that there are many areas of the programs I haven’t had anything to do with…yet. Stay tuned to see what sort of effect it all has when I learn more! Learning is always important–no matter where you are on the time line, no matter what the season.