What am I working on these days? Well, mainly home improvement projects and entertaining visiting family members - and the hiking trips that I have shared.
However, I did create a Thermofax screen from some drawings I have of the upper Yellowstone River Valley. The drawings are in a home made book (long pieces of paper glued together years ago by my paternal grandmother). Everything is fading and the glue has yellowed, but I have found them workable, anyway.
The artist was William Henry Holmes. He was part of the Hayden Survey - done in 1872. I am certain they are copyright safe for me to use in my art - I doubt they were ever actually published in a book. I think they were loose and my grandmother just put them into the book as a way of storing them safely.
The book my grandmother put together contains drawings of about 5 different mountain ranges in Montana. These are all relevant to our family history. She has marked on them - the locations of the family homesteads, which were settled very early. I am a 4th generation Montanan - my relatives arrived here during gold rush times and as the gold petered out - they turned to other means. One distant uncle was a shoe cobbler. Another became the manager of the state mental asylum. But my great grandparents tried their hand at farming until their farm was claimed by Ennis Lake when a dam was built on the Madison River.
At that point, they shifted to ranching - with land on higher ground that they received in exchange for what was lost under the lake.
I chose this mountain range to start - because it shows the part of the Yellowstone Valley where I used to live - the tallest peak on the left is Emigrant Peak, which I looked at every day for nearly 10 years.
So - anyway - I printed the screen onto a piece of indigo dyed fabric - using black ink.
Then, I thought I would try adding a bit of color and found my pastel dye crayons most effective.
Not sure I like the results well enough to use this piece in any finished work, but I wanted to show you that I am doing a little bit of art this summer!