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just as a friendly reminder, you should head on over to seth apter’s blog, the altered page, here:

here you will find artists’ answers to the question “what is the one thing that you know now that you would have liked to have known when you first started to create art?”


first and foremost, i wanted to share that the amazing and generous seth apter is hosting a charity auction on the altered page for those effected by the wrath of hurricane sandy.  the offerings are simply amazing, and the benefit so very great!  click the image below to read his post.

go bid!  i can’t afford the first one but i think i shall donate $50 in seth’s name because he’s such a good and generous man and no matter how rough things may be for me right now, i know they are so much worse for those in the mid-atlantic region.

on a totally separate note, an odd warning…

paper wasp nest

if you’re like me, you love nature bits: sticks, stones, bird and paper wasp nests, etc.  all of my closest friends and family often collect things things for me, along with bones and other good bits.  a few weeks ago i commissioned my dad to make me some AMAZING art boxes (i’ll share that later — new motorized/light-up series in the works) and in the parcel he included two gorgeous and pristine wasp nests.  i was so thrilled!!  i was going to pull one out two days ago for an assemblage i’m working on but got side-tracked (what else is new?), and then went for them last night.  it looked like someone had poked their finger into the center of one as there was a wee hole where no hole had previous been.  i asked my son if he squished it in a fit?  nopes.  then i spy something moving inside the baggy it was in.  a WASP!  a big, fat, pokey-arsed wasp!  somehow it had managed to hatch super early in my house because it’s so cozy and warm.  who ever would have imagined!?  so, if you find a seemingly evacuated wasp’s nest, you may want to keep it in something tightly closed for… like a year… before you fiddle with it.  i’m quite allergic to those feisty little beasts.

one of the two looks like this with the white bits.  think a bunch more will hatch?  (this isn’t my actual nest — i was scared to open the box in case 13 more hatched and ate through the plastic bag they’re in).

paper wasp nest

it's still life -- seth apter -- the altered page -- the pulse

last saturday seth apter of the altered page emailed me to let me know that i was going to be part of the pulse on sunday, revealing my answer to his task: “Photograph a still life that you create using an array of objects”.  i did not realized this until just now because oregon has decided to play arizona and as a result, it’s too hot here to move or breath… or get on my computer.  so sorry, seth, for being so slow!

for those who do not know, this is the last post in this series, so hop on over there now!  i’m going to too! (this isn’t the photo on seth’s site, but i thought it would be nice to jazz up the post with a photo)

a collection of goodness

i’ve been quite bad at blogging lately and will soon be posting updates on “the tallest handmade book in the world” project and other fun stuff.  stay tuned.

i’ve been feeling quiet lately and haven’t gotten around to posting or visiting other blogs.  my gram passed away on the 1st of february and my energy has been spent making large memory boards for her funeral and reflecting on all of my wonderful memories of her.  she was such a gorgeous lady, and lived 92 long years.  i want to try to paint her next.  sorrow can be inspirational for me, as weird or messed up as that may sound.  so i’ll be quiet a bit longer while i paint and pep myself back up again.

gramma betty

but this post is not about my sweet, lovely gram…

it’s about seth apter of the altered page.  i am very proud to share that i will be part of his “master class” post for tomorrow.  there he will be sharing artist’s answers to the question “If you could take a class from one artist from anytime in history, including the present, who would it be and why?”.  i am quiet excited to read it as to be perfectly honest, i’ve forgotten my response as it’s been such a long and crazy year.  i am also always very interested in hearing what other artists responses are and am going to read this very first thing after i procure a steamy hot cuppa strong coffee in the morning.

seth apter's the altered page: master class

go check out seth’s post and when you’re done, i’d love to hear your response.  who would YOU take a class from?

if you haven’t done so already, head on over to amazon and pre-order your copy of seth’s book “the pulse of mixed media”.  this is going to be the best book of all time, and i am so proud to be included in it as i know many of you are too.  such great company we’re all in!  if you look at the preview, you may get a peek at one of my pieces in the book, or even be able to spy a goofy picture of me (not that anyone in their right mind would want to, hah).

lastly, don’t forget that there is still time to submit to the altered bits zine for any of the following four categories: tattered and torn, cabinet of curiosities, an artful retelling of history & altered and handmade books and pages.  there is a bit space left and i would LOVE to include YOUR work.  🙂  i need to get my arse in gear and finish MY pieces.  life been way too full these past six or so months but i’m bound and determined to get it done.

more soon — have lots of other great news but am not feeling particularly chatty or my typical witty self so will share another time.


i’m sure you’ve already heard, but i’m telling you again anyway because it’s sooooo worth telling!  seth apter‘s very first book “the pulse of mixed media” is due to hit the shelves on 2 march, 2012.  i haven’t seen the inside of the book yet (of course), but i can tell you without a doubt that it is going to be one of the BEST mixed media art books of all times, if not THE BEST.  you can guarantee that i will be buying several copies of this book.  here is a peek at the lovely cover with multiple mini-peeklets of so much gorgeous and delectable art that it makes me with it were march 2nd right now:

the pulse of mixed media by seth apteri’m loving everything on that cover so much i just want to lick it!

i am so very honored to be a part of this book (yeps, i’m in it though would be hugely plugging it either way)!  seth is one of my all-time favorite artists, bloggers and people i’ve never met but plan to so being within the pages of his first-ever book is such a monumentally huge thing to me.  i feel so very grateful to have been invited (thank you, seth!!) and so honored to be in a book with so many amazingly talented artists.  i’m not going to tell you what’s in it or give you peeks… just wanted to tease you with the cover and say you must go get it!  it will be available for pre-order on amazon and i will let you know when that is the moment i’m made aware.

also, seth now has a email list sign-up on his blog so you can sign up there to find out all new deets as he shares them.  go on now…

seth apter's the pulse, style file

i am so excited to share that today i will be one of the many featured artists on seth apter’s “the pulse” for his weekly style file.  this is week 8.  (eight is a magical number.  if you knock it over, it’s an infinity symbol.  seth and the pulse and all participants are infinitely amazing!)

update: i’m a ditzy girl sometimes, despite my high IQ.  i posted this in advance, forgetting it was the STYLE photo, not the art photo.  so, you get a preview of a piece that will later be featured.  whoops!  sorry seth! after you see this, forget it entirely, ‘kay?  thanks.  🙂

the piece that i chose to submit is called “finding the rabbit hole” and is a play on my favorite story “alice in wonderland” (i’m sure you’ve heard of it).  🙂  but, this piece has the alicia-twist with a bit of taxidermy, a bit of nature, some watch parts and gears and lots of secret places.  the piece itself measures 6″ x 12″ and is the first in a series of 3 or 4 or 5 — i haven’t decided yet.  basically this is a rip-off of what i did in lisa jurist’s book for the pulp redux collaboration because i LOVED that piece so much — it really hit a personal note for me so i’ve created one for myself.  (i deserve it.)

alice in wonderland, taxidermy, nature art, skulls, bones, animal, white rabbit, rabbit paw, vials, steampunk, rusty key

in the piece you can see many representations of the story of alice: a glass ring that represents the looking glass, a mouse skull which represents the mouse she meets in the pool of tears, a broken piece of a pocket watch and taxidermy rabbit paw representing the white rabbit who is notoriously late, the rusty key, etc.  the little tree is the one she fell through the hole under its branches.

here you can see detail of the skull through the little hole (click to enlarge):

alice in wonderland, through the looking glass, mouse skull, steampunk, watch parts, pocket watch, gear, bones

when i was a little tiny girl, we lived in the middle of nowhere, oregon.  (it was actually called lorane — still is)  at the time, the population was about 47.  three or four of those were my family and at least 98% of the rest were “old” people (anything over ten is old when you’re 3).  i had really only one friend that i can recall (a cute boy named jasper pony p.) and the rest of the time it was solo going.  i would wander around our forest searching for gnomes, faeries and THE rabbit hole.  usually this would end in disappointment as i would typically only find things like caterpillars (who i would speak to as if i were alice), snakes, mushrooms, berries and deer poop.

detail of the taxidermy rabbit foot and rusty old key (the frame around the tree was one of the first things i made out of apoxie clay from a mold i created about a year ago — was saving it for something special):

alice in wonderland, through the looking glass, taxidermy rabbit paw, rusty key, tree, assemblage

after a long time of searching day and night for the rabbit hole (and probably not “night” — my parents were not neglectful or anything and would never have let me wander a dark forest alone at night as a small child), i gave up.  i thought that if it were meant to be, i would just find it.  instead, my flexed my creativity muscles and thought up my own stories of “alicia’s wonderland” and drew pictures of what it would look like while perched under trees with our goats, chickens and kitties.  that was equally as fun.

under the vintage photo of alice on the front resides a deep compartment — her photo being the door.  i have yet to finish the inside (shhh) but it will have these and/or other vials inside (drink me!) and a menagerie of additional skulls, bones and other bits.  probably a butterfly, too.

poison vials, watch part vials, animal skull, secret compartment

within each of the sides of this piece, there are four secret little drawers (whose faces i still must paint!).  inside the drawers: a beetle, a butterfly wing and a button, currently.  i am looking for a caterpillar and other pertinent items to fill them up a bit more.

alice in wonderland, looking glass, assemblage, nature, art, mixed media, secret drawers

 (i need to paint the edges of the canvas the piece is on, too!  how embarrassing that it’s STILL not all the way complete!)  i love all of the twigs, nature bits, flower petals, dried roses, shells, moss, feathers and wings that are between the layers.  reminds me of my forest.

alicia caudle, alice in wonderland, taxidermy, art, mixed media, assemblage, drawers, hidden doors, compartments, nature art

what was your favorite childhood story?

what an exciting month july is!  happy belated fourth of july to those in the states.  we had a blast at our house.

the pulse, seth apter
The Pulse, founded by Seth Apter of the Altered Page, is a collaborative project that aims to introduce you to new artists, help you get to know familiar faces even more, and allow you access into the creative hearts and minds of a very talented crew of individuals. More than 130 artists have answered a series of questions which make up The Pulse. Their responses will be presented in a series of online posts which kicked off July 2nd, 3rd and 4th.  The posts are chock full of AMAZING art and links to the artists websites — go check it out!  This will be continuing every Sunday until about the Spring of 2012.

altered bits free collage pack giveaway

as a gesture of gratitude to all of my wonderful readers, i whipped up several little vellum envelope collage packs with collage sheet images, vintage book pages, printed papers and such to send off to five lucky winners (some also have vintage stamps, chipboard pieces, handmade papers and gears).  i will be having a giveaway for four of these this coming weekend here, and one for someone on facebook.  all winners will be announced july 10th.  on a side-note, it’s just occurred to me that all but one of the packs have anatomical images so hope you like body parts as much as i do.  most of the images are from new collage sheets that are not yet listed on my site.  just leave a comment here or on facebook to be in the drawing.

steampunk emporium by jema "emilly ladybird" hewitt

last, and certainly not least, i wanted to share in advance that i will be doing an interview with jema “emilly ladybird” hewitt regarding her recent book “Steampunk Emporium” on the 11th of this month.  i can’t wait to share this with those of you who are into steampunk and/or jewelry and/or oddments and/or costume design.  there will be yet another july giveaway for this: one free copy of the book “Steampunk Emporium” and a little steampunk + other goodies bag from me with gears, watch parts, cogs, 1940s vintage beads, etc.

i hope you all have a magnificently creative start to the new month!  i’m working on three new series and some paintings — if only i could just sleep once a week so i could get done all that is in my mind!!

phew!  i swear to gawd and goddess i thought i was going to die for a little bit there.  i ended up having two horrible recurring bouts of pneumonia after only a half day here and a whole day there of feeling better.  one night, i was so sure i was going to drown in my own body that i wrote a long “love letter” to my son, praising him for all of the wonderful things he is and telling him how proud i am of him, sharing that i know he’ll grow up to be a great and wonderful man who does amazing things.  i didn’t die, thankfully, but after 8 days of a 104 fever and four weeks of coughing so hard i nearly passed out and then breaking ribs due to said coughing, i sure thought i would.  it’s nice to be back, and alive… and ready to art it up again.

very belated happy new year!!

there are so many exciting things that i’ve wanted to share, though i’m quite sure that at least 79% of you are already aware of 96% of it so i’ll just mention the biggies.

inspired remnants, curious dreams, kerin gale, epoxie clay, art book, mixed media art
first and foremost, i am sooooo very proud of my wonderful and sweet and utterly talented friend kerin gale of remnants of olde for publishing her very first book, inspired remnants, curious dreams, which happens to be THE very first book on epoxy clay in the existence of this world.  she is a creative genius, that girl!  you can get your copy here on amazon, or even better, in her etsy shop bundled with her online classes HERE.  check back here soon as i will be writing a review of her book and posting it here and on my site as well.  i promise you’ll love it!

this is my piece in it (i did this a couple of years ago — you know how long it takes for books to be published!).  the empress — my little tarot gal:

the empress, tarot, mixed media art, assemblage, doll parts, epoxy clay

next news, seth apter, king of the mixed media world and his blog the altered page has begun a wonderful new installation of the pulse, entitled “collectors edition”.  i just happen to be in the collectors edition chapter two, which you can find by clicking on his lovely image below.  this is such an inspiring and wonderful collection of peeks into other people’s collections.  i LOVE it!!  you will love it too.  get ready to be inspired!

in small news, i’m cleaning the heck out of my studio for the first time in about 4 years and downgrading in a huge way.  i will be donating a lot of it to scrap and other local places (just sent a huge box to a school for children with autism and asperger’s syndrome), but will also be giving away LOTS of little things here on my blog.  stay tuned for vintage photos, old metal coin charms, rusty bits of this and that, frozen charlottes (just got about 600 more which will soon be on my site), other vintage victorian dolls, and other totally random items.  i want to share the love.

oh, and last but not least, the altered bits zine deadline is going to be pushed out a bit farther.  if you wish to be published, please read this: and please have your work(s) to me by the new deadline of february 25th.  i was on my death bed for so long there that i cannot keep up with the first plan, sorry folks.

more soon.  i have some gluten free baking to go do for the boys.  😉

the pulse, studio scapes, the altered page
join the altered page on sunday, september 12th for StudioScapes, the newest installment of the pulse. on that day, and continuing on consecutive sundays, stop by to see images of vignettes from the studios and homes of nearly 150 artists, each one chosen by the artist as their own favorite.  mine will be a part of this tomorrow, so make sure to check it out if you are remotely curious about what crazy pisces girls keep in their studios.

i’ve been quite quiet for a long time but am excited to be nearly caught up.  i’ve been prepping for two shows, potentially a third, remodeling parts of our home, redecorating others and jumping in head-first to the world of homeschooling (that’s the short list).  i have SO many new things to share and will do so soon.  for now though, make sure to check out StudioScapes!  i’m very excited about this new chapter of the pulse and know you will be too.

also, the pulp redux collaboration is back in action — we had a few little slow-downs for bit bit but i should be receiving TWO books in the coming week and new stuff has been posted on our pulp redux blog.  you really must go peek!

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the tallest handmade book in the world {project}
Pulp Redux: International Altered Book Collaboration
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