Happy New Year
a list of things I want to make, art project thoughts
First of all — there’s a new Spectrolite version out, if you’re interested in such things! (More below.)
Thinking about what we might do with ANEMONE in 2022. To close out last year, Seattle spent a week under a blanket of snow, the park looked like a Bruegel’s painting. Stumbled on this photo of anemones from October: feels like another lifetime. We got our vaccine boosters, and read books on the couch, watched Succession and Lupin and Money Heist. I’ve been having lots of climate crisis thoughts. (Talking to strangers about that was interesting.) Amy and I turned in the draft of the all well book about how to sew clothes to the publisher. Recovering myself after that with slow hands on things, reading in the window seat. Cooking a big pot of vaquero beans on the stove and the whole house smells like carrots and onion and garlic and bay leaf. Making tomato sauce, making lentil soup.
I (Amelia) have been thinking about what I want to make, in terms of personal art practice/work. The past year and a half, I mostly focused on the technical skills of risograph printing, zine and small book making. Now I’ve figured out enough to make the work I want to make, am feeling ready to shift towards the content of the work. Top of mind: playing with color, and making some of my long-held project ideas. (A Seattle map! Reading recs zine!)
Beyond printmaking, I want to get my processes streamlined for a regular practice of marbling paper and fabric, and start exploring sculptural work like making light sculptures. Carving more wooden spoons and bowls. Making leather mules. Making marbled fabric into zip bags with fun zippers, totes, and/or cushions. (I spent time this week attempting fabric marbling, which has been way harder than the last time. Lots of failure so far, mostly.) Maybe also washi tape and washi sticker sheets and digitally printed fabric: childhood dreams. (But climate crisis?) I want to get better at procreate.
I want to make, in general: beautiful practical objects, for myself and friends and other people to use and enjoy. I want the process itself to be a pleasure, a practice.
Excited to do more sewing this year. Spending last year writing a book about sewing clothes unsurprisingly took up most of the time and energy I’d usually put into sewing for fun. Next up: some wide leg black linen pants. This year I’m going to sew a quilt for my mom (the modern patchwork zine pattern). I want sew nicer versions for myself of a couple other all well patterns: a big full moon bag with a leather strap, a green canvas weekender, and more v tops (a forthcoming pattern). I have ideas a few more shirts and pants, a sweatshirt. Sarah and I are slowly working on some outdoors shorts, and I got 10 yards of black nylon taslan from Trains in Tacoma with my friend Kirsten for them. And I must make a bike bag.
We ordered purple and green risograph inks, and a standing height, big tall work table. Paper is a major shortage item at the moment. We’re adding Letraset letters to the studio door: anemone, in 75-point Helvetica.
Also: we got a Stitch-n-Fold B2000 booklet making machine! A 2001 model from a print shop in the San Juan Islands, if all goes well it will be folding and stapling with us for another 20 years. Will show you more soon, but just know that exciting times for the speed of future zine making lies ahead.
There’s a new version of Spectrolite out today, with a bunch of nice little fixes. You can drag-n-drop and filter color palettes, an idea from Mad Mohre. There’s a new layout to arrange two 5x7” art prints onto letter paper, with trim marks, courtesy of our friends Small Works. And cute small zine imposition templates for four-up and six-up size zines on legal and letter paper: tiny zines! How adorable, I must print zines this size!
Adam and I made some plots for our app/art project for next year too. I’m excited to take a design and styling pass, and write some documentation and tutorials. We are thinking about paper color. And Rachel Hyman of Bitza Press has been contributing some code too, and is working on 8-up zine layouts.
Ok, hope you are staying as safe as you can. Hope your new year thinking has clarity and you make some art. Stay in touch, write back if you want!
-Amelia (& Adam)