Friday, May 10, 2013

Fabric Wallhangings

My latest projects are Fabric Wallhangings using antique cabinet cards, vintage costume jewelry, laces, fabric etc.  The sewing machine has been calling my name and since I don't know how to make clothes and don't really need a lot of experience with the machine to make the wallhangings, I have been making one hanging after another. 
Here are two of the completed hangings.  They are on sale at One Real Peach in Garrettsville Ohio.  I will post more as they are completed. 


Saturday, March 23, 2013

Free Vintage Children's Book Pages for your art!

I have uploaded a couple of vintage children's book pages for you to use in your art.  Copyright laws don't allow for these to be reproduced to be sold,  but they can be used in your own personal art.  I would love to see what you create when using them.  Enjoy!

Upcoming Class Offering: Springtime Calls

Hello Everyone,

If you are like me, you are tired of the cold gray weather.  So for our next class, we are going to make colorful collages with thoughts of Spring by using bright pinks, greens, blues and pictures of butterflies, birds, etc.   

Starting with a 6 x 6 canvas that I will supply, we will collage papers, and then paint on top of those.  We then may use a mask, or a woodcut to add depth. You will learn collage composition and color theory while making a piece that you will be proud to display.  I hope to see you all there.

Springtime Calls Collage

Date:  Saturday, April 6 OR Monday, April 8, 2013

Time: Saturday class 9:30 a.m. to :200 p.m. / Monday class 5:30 p.m. to 9 p.m.
Email me at to reserve your seat. 

Class space is limited and is on a first come, first served basis. Note: Class maximum is limited to 5 students.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Cup of Care

I have been holding onto this vintage metal cup for some time now just waiting on the perfect assemblage.  I used the definition of the word care from a vintage Thesaurus and after coloring the page, cut strips of it and weaved the pieces into the nest that the little girl sits in.  She is caring for the eggs with a pretty serious look on her face.  As I usually do, I used the actual cabinet card instead of a copy.  I feel that this actual photo makes the piece more authentically vintage/antique.  There are many times when I will only use a copy of the actual cabinet card or photo.  It just depends on what I am making; an assemblage, a collage etc. 
This piece is going to be a gift to someone who has helped me and cared for me since the death of my son.  It's just too cute and too special to sell.  I think she will like it as much as I do and I love to give gifts of my art to those who I love.  Much better than a store-bought item, don't you think? 

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

The Secret to a Great Assemblage

Almost every piece of my art has at least some vintage elements, but my favorite pieces to work on are those centered around vintage pictures of people.  The clothes that they wear, the way that they sit, their facial expressions all tell a story.  When using a picture of more than one person in the same photo, the way in which these two subjects touch or don't touch each other can be considered 'just a pose' until you look closer. 

The best example of examing a picture beyond the simple pose can be seen is this photo that I used in one of my first assemblages a few years ago.

At first blush, this appears to be a simple picture of a typical family.  But the longer I looked at each individual, I began to notice that each of them is touching the person(s) next to them, but only barely.  Not one of these family members appears comfortable touching another.  In fact, they each look as if they are more of an individual instead of one of a family unit.  What do I mean by that?  To see this more clearly, I couldn't help but circle the place where each family member is touching the other.  This intentional close-up was continued with the facial expression of each member by adding a square epoxy sticker to each.  Now it is easy to see each individual as apposed to the family unit. 
The story I could read after this close examination was a family that were not expressive with each other.  They obviously aren't accustomed to being in such close physical proximity to one another let alone to touch one another.  I see this as something that is passed along from a parent to a child and to their children etc.  Thus, this was their Family Legacy. 

So, at least for me, the secret to a good assemblage that uses a vintage photo begins with the subject: Who is he or she or they, what do you think they are feeling as this picture was taken, do they look comfortable in their clothes or in the position the photographer has put them in?  Once you can answer some of these questions, their story will come easily. 

My next step is the box or container that will hold my assemblage.  For me, once I have come up with the story of the photo, the choice of the container will then be easy because they will relate in some way, if not immediately, then once you have manipulated the box.


These brothers in the photo in my 'Brother's' assemblage told me a story as well and that is why the clocks. 

In this assemblage, the subject of the assemblage actually began as one of a large group but I cut her out of that group to use individually.  She looked so much like a reluctant participant (she was originally the flower girl in a large wedding party) that I felt she fit in the story of "Little Miss Potato" assemblage. 


Saturday, November 24, 2012

A Fresh Start

It's time for a fresh start...

It is almost a new year and it has been a very difficult one to say the least.  As my profile says, I have been using my art as a way to get through some times that I thought I never could.  My only living son has passed on but still lives in all our hearts.  His life in pictures can be viewed on my FaceBook page!/marianna.larew

We all have had terrible trials during our lives and we make it through them with the love of family and friends of which I have so many great one's starting with my wonderful husband.  I also have opened my heart on page and in my mixed media art.  Here I will post some of my latest works and would love to hear your thoughts or questions anytime!