Friday, November 17, 2017

GREEN EGGS AND HAM!


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My Green Eggs and Ham collage is one of my favorites. I'm sorry, but it's not for sale. The collage is actually made from a book that my sister and brothers shared when we were young. We didn't have much but we did belong to a Dr. Seuss Book Club that sent books once a month. Each month one of us would get to "own" the book that came in and that included opening it after dinner. I remember the excitement of the moment when the book of the month was revealed. At this point I believe I have all or most of the books that were delivered to us and they are all in less than ideal condition to hold and read, but perfect for a recycled story. 
In an apparent bet with his editor, Dr. Seuss (aka Theodor Seuss Geisel), created Green Eggs and Ham with just 50 different words to tell the story. The Cat in the Hat uses 225 words. Our cover, published in 1960, promotes the 50 word vocabulary as a feature. As an educator I loved reading this book with my students and would use "You do not like them so you say. Try them! Try them! And you may. Try them and you may I say." as a callback to encourage students to try new things. Green Eggs and Ham is a wonderful edition to your personal library. 
I've taken the collage out of the frame so you can see the detail. Hope it  makes you want to read the book!







Saturday, October 14, 2017

CORDUROY!

16" x 13" framed collage
Another collage that I am making available for purchase is based on the children's book Corduroy by Don Freeman. Corduroy lives in a fancy department store but he is missing a button. A little girl named Lisa is walking through the department store with her mother and spies the teddy bear. She loves him immediately and asks her mom if she can have him. Her mother's response, "Not today, dear. Besides he doesn't look new." Corduroy did not know he was missing a button and comes to life that night in the department store to search for a new button. Readers of all ages love the idea of a toy coming to life, but I admire this story most because it is ultimately about friendship and belonging. Reading this book with your students or your child provides a wealth of discussion topics and so it's no surprise that Corduroy was named one of the Top 100 Great Children's Books by the New York Public Library.

Buy me here!

Buy me here!
Buy me here!



Buy me here!
Author Don Freeman was an extremely interesting person. As a graphic artist, he sketched street life and New York City Theatre Life for 20 years. He wrote Corduroy and A Pocket for Corduroy but all other Corduroy books are based on his characters. Freeman also wrote several other children's books including the Caldecott Honor book Fly High, Fly Low.

If you have a spot for Corduroy in your home contact me for pricing.  I also encourage you to make Corduroy part of your classroom or home library. Corduroy books make great gifts. More information on Corduroy Books can be found here or click on my fast links below the books to check out these great reads.






Friday, October 13, 2017

IT'S A COLLAGE!

Want to add this book to your collection? Buy it here!
In case you missed it! The framed collage below is based on the book I Love My Hair! by Natasha Anastasia Tarpley and illustrated by E.B. Lewis. This is a fabulous book that I read to hundreds of students as a teacher in Boston. (See Ms. M’s Materials on Ms. M’s Mass Media). The collage grew from a very tattered paperback with pages falling out. I've been a collage artist for many years but only recently have had the courage to start sharing some of my favorite pieces. 







It can take me several weeks to complete a collage. My visual art process starts with writing and I create a précis of the story. A précis is a summary of the story that includes the critical elements. I like to think of it as the essence of the story. I ask myself, what words could tell this story completely if I could only use a few sentences? This is like the process I might use when I introduce a story to my students. What is this book about? Why am I reading it to my class? Why is this an important book to share? In the case of I Love My Hair the text that appears in the final collage is a combination of the the original précis and the pictures that I used to tell the story. Not everyone can own my collage, but everyone can read the book. I hope that all my collages encourage MORE reading.

I’ve made quite a few Recycled Stories since my first and do not have the wall space to keep all my beloved art. The one-of-a-kind collage is framed and measures 18” x 22” and comes complete with a new, hard cover copy of I Love My Hair!  Contact me for pricing on the collage if you have a place for this gem in your world!


Thursday, September 28, 2017

THE RAINBOW FISH COLLAGE

Buy me here!
Buy me here!
I had the awesome opportunity to attend a Pop-Up Museum at Westerly Public Library yesterday.  I brought my Rainbow Fish Collage for feedback. The Rainbow Fish was written and illustrated by Marcus Pfister.  I've put a link to Marcus Pfister's official website for you because there is such a wealth of information, resources and more amazing books to read with your students or children. Marcus Pfister was originally a graphic artist that worked in advertising. He published his first book entitled The Sleepy Owl in 1986. The Rainbow Fish came to America around 1992 and has been translated to over 80 languages and has sold over 30 million copies. The Rainbow Fish is also an animated show. Students and teachers love The Rainbow Fish. For my display yesterday, I included the cover of the badly damaged book that I made the collage from. Thank you to everyone for your positive feedback at the Pop-Up. I've included a better picture of the collage below.
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Monday, September 25, 2017

I LOVE MY HAIR!

Want to add this book to your collection? Buy it here!
My first Recycled Story is based on the book I Love My Hair! by Natasha Anastasia Tarpley and illustrated by E.B. Lewis. This is a fabulous book that I read to hundreds of students as a teacher in Boston. (See Ms. M’s Materials on Ms. M’s Mass Media). The collage grew from a very tattered paperback with pages falling out. At first I thought I might just frame some of my favorite pages but the edges were also tattered and E.B. Lewis's beautiful illustrations were speaking to me, "don't throw me out!" The faces of my students who would share new found confidence about their beautiful hair and experiences after reading the book with me were echoed in Natasha Anastasia Tarpley's story. I couldn't throw this book away! Maybe I could save it? Thus, Recycled Stories was born. 



It actually took me some time to pull this story together. I hope you enjoy it. I’ve made quite a few Recycled Stories since my first and do not have the wall space to keep all my beloved art. The one-of-a-kind collage is framed and measures 18” x 22” and comes complete with a new, hard cover copy of I Love My Hair!  Contact me for pricing on the collage.

Friday, September 22, 2017

ORIGIN OF RECYCLED STORIES

As an educator and library media specialist, I have seen my fair share of books that have broken spines, torn pages, ones that have become the dreaded "coloring book" or my all time favorite - "nacho libro!" My beloved Luis brought back his book quite literally dipped in cheese from cover to cover. I thought I took a picture of "nacho libro" but as I post I can not find it. Should I find it, I promise to update this post. But I digress as this post is about what has brought me to recycle stories. I felt there just had to be something I could do to save some of the books that were being returned unreadable and turning books into a collage as a Recycled Story was born. I haven't posted any of the collages yet...they will be here soon! To make a Recycled Story these are the Three Rules I follow.

  1. The book must not be readable as a book anymore; binding cracked, pages loose, a few pages may have writing on them or it could be an overly loved paper back with a tattered cover.
  2. I must be able to retell the story - the essential elements.
  3. I ONLY use one book per collage, but I allow myself to use other items such as paper, cloth, ribbon or other materials as appropriate to the design.
The book below was actually "recycled!" The pages were stuck together and could not be separated after completely drying out for two weeks. I have collected a fair number of books over the years that qualify to become my collages, but I also go to tag sales or library book sales to find candidates for my artwork.




Thursday, September 21, 2017

RECYCLED STORIES IS LIVE!

As I continue  my eclectic journey that has always involved education, communication, media and the arts I am repurposing some favorite and lesser known books and stories of our time. RECYCLED STORIES uses damaged and beyond repair books to create story collages and other functional novelty items to decorate your favorite readers life.