Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Cut it out!

The last couple of days didn't quite go to plan.

Yesterday (or today depending on when this post decides it wants to be dated...) I had planned to get up at a reasonable time (didn't happen) and really hit my email "reply to" box. You know you've let things get out of hand when there are 103 emails that you need to reply to.

A few emails in and I got a new one from my sister-in-law. Her trip to Singapore with my brother didn't end so well. She made it home to Australia safe and sound. My brother on the other hand remains in Singapore, in isolation, the Communicable Disease Centre. He's OK, but has chicken pox, was kicked out of the hotel and isn't allowed to fly. Without anywhere else to put him, he's been put in the hospital and has to remain there for seven days until he's no longer contagious. Once he's cleared, he'll be flown home with a nurse. I called him straight away, he's doing OK but is quite lonely and sad and a bit freaked out by the whole experience. Luckily though, all the doctors speak good English, unlike when my husband was admitted to the hospital here and told that he was diseased in the head.

While on the phone to him, my mobile phone rang. My friend's wife has a bad case of the 'flu and was asking if Wayne could come around to do some acupuncture on her to help. Not long after, we went around to their place and before we know it, most of the day had gone. Only a few emails were answered in the end.

The day before was my free day, a day to play as I saw fit. I started with some jewellery I've been trying to work on. I failed miserably! I know they say a carpenter shouldn't blame his tools (or something along those lines), but I think I'm having problems with my soldering iron. I think it's too hot. When I'm trying to solder onto the copper tape, the flux is boiling, getting under the tape, melting some of the adhesive and lifting it from the glass. I'm not getting a smooth bead either. I tried a different iron, but it seemed to be too cold. I felt like Goldilocks! After hours of breathing in toxic fumes, I gave up. I'll try to find a temperature controlled iron and have another go later.

Here's three of my failed attempts. Rather than just throw them out, I've folded a little origami crane in the same yuzen I was using in the experiments and hung them on the wall.

I then needed to vent some of my frustration on something, so cutting seemed like the perfect activity. I got stuck into some of my kirigami patterns. For some, just a good pair of scissors were fine, but for others, I needed a scalpel. I have to say, a number of blades were broken in the process. I'll use them in some collage work sometime in the future, but for the moment, they made me feel a lot better.

For this one (below), I was inspired by the floral motifs used in many kimonos that have a design within a design. I haven't decided what I'll use it in yet, maybe on a new journal cover.

So now, my holidays are at an end. I'm back at work now and start teaching classes tomorrow. I can't believe how quickly those couple of weeks flew by!


Michelle said...

Oh, how frustrating for you!! It's so annoying when you have this image of the perfect day in your head - "I will achieve so much, everything I do will turn out perfectly, I may even lose a kilo or 2 the day is going to be so wonderful" - then it just doesn't go to plan!

I love the last kirigami flower with the backing paper - very effective.

Melanie Gray Augustin said...

Hi Michelle

Thanks for the comment!

Yeh, it was frustrating, but I think that's why I like to try new mediums on a free day. It's a chance for me to play with something new, there's no deadline, so if it doesn't work out, it's not a problem.

Jenny said...

I hope your brother is coping all right and not too lonely. Your jewellery looks amazing to me and definitely not a failed attempt-the matching crane looks great. OMG You are back at school!!!!I know that creeping up feeling and know that I will soon be in the same situation! Love your cut outs too!

kitkabbit said...

I hate soldering soooo much....
these look pretty darn good to me!

ikkinlala said...

Your kirigami is beautiful, and your jewellery looks good too!

Melanie Gray Augustin said...

Thanks everyone!


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