Friday, April 30, 2010

Are You a Label Reader? The Story of a Glue Book

I feel sometimes like I need to apologize or rationalize my obsessions. But I really don't have an explanation for why something suddenly strikes me so then I have to start collecting it and then scheming about how I will use it. Take canned fruit and juice labels. I like the bright colors and graphics. Best Choice and Always Save have the most garrish, but pretty illustrations. So I started carefully removing them (after the can was opened!) and saving them- in the bread box, in the utensil drawer, until they spilled out every time I needed bread or a measuring spoon. I only had a vague idea that I wanted to make a collage or something.

Then yesterday, Rebecca was restless, so I suggested we do "arts and crafts" on the back porch. I pulled out a stack of "Birds and Blooms" magazines and let her cut and glue to her heart's content. Meanwhile, I pulled out my labels, an old hardbound book I had set aside and joined Rebecca in cutting and gluing. It felt so good to organize my "collection" and make it look visually interesting at the same time.
The spreads have a "true colors" feel and as you can see, some birds joined the fruit.

Some teabag wrappers and tags joined the labels, because they were stashed with the fruit labels and are another thing I obsessively collect. It's a sickness!
This green page turned out to be my favorite because of the life cycle of the monarch butterfly I managed to incorporate in with the grapes.
What do TAZO tea, a sparrow, white grape juice, ginger tea, a chrysalis, a caterpiller and a butterfly all have in common?
Nothing really, but it works, doesn't it?
Your eye makes a connection between the Best Choice logo and the black in the butterfly; the orange-y brown in the "100% juice" and the similiar coloring in the chrysalis, butterfly and catterpillar. The sparrow has a variation of the orange and so does the tea tag upper left. And the life stages of the monarch sit or hang in natural places on the labels so they look like they were always there.
It's exciting how it all came together!

So get yourself a 5 year old, feed him or her some apple sauce and manderin oranges and then use the fruit labels to make some art.


Jeanie said...

I'm loving this! I've been wanting to save wine labels, knowing full well that if I did, they'd sit for eons and I didn't know what I'd do with them. Hmmmm. You're creating another monster!

Nathalie Thompson said...

Ah! Wine labels! Now THAT would make an interesting "read"!

La Dolce Vita said...

who know shy we collect things!?? but we do and this is really fun!!

Laura said...

Yes, I really like the green page, too. And I love the Tazo Zen tea that you've used the wrapper from!

~*~Patty Szymkowicz said...

ooo your grape juice pages really speak to me ... Love thinking of you and sweet Rebecca frolicking with glue sticks on the back porch!

you have given me an idea now too ... why hadn't I thought of keeping good stuff in the breadbox ... besides bread every now and then that is :)

Linda said...

If only I had a 5 year old...or a breadbox! I must improvize! I love this!!!!!!!

Marlynn said...

How my dear BFF - I am chuckling since I was gluing last night watching TV. I cut up my art mags and paste ads and stories into books. However, I do have some can labels laying around the place that I want to use on ATCs. I have, however, have to admit - made spreads out of them. Your green page is to die for! Good job. Hugs

bad penny said...

what fun - for you both ! I do soak off wine labels I like. They tear sometimes but that just adds something I think !

Ragamuffin Gal said...

I so love and enjoy your creativity and ingenuity ~ If I had a five year old I would probably be crazy by now ~ Love you sweetie! ~ k

Ashlyn said...

This is BEAUTIFUL, Nathalie!! The green page is my fave too. It seems more complete to me, I suppose. And the COLORS, OH my!! :) Love it!!!

Big Hugs, Ashlyn