Monday, December 7, 2009

Alicia's "The Museum of Forgotten Things" - Debrina's Contribution


The compartments and their tell-tale findings...

Well, if you know me well, you'll know I like to launch myself into any new project with speedy aplomb.  So, without further ado, let me introduce to you the start of the next instalment of Alicia's Pulp Redux book, The Museum of Forgotten Things

I've picked up where Alicia left off.  Hester, our main character, has shut herself away in her house after murdering her husband (this part of the story is Alicia's invention and is told so well by Alicia using various invented documents in her book - you'll see these in due time as you each get a turn at the book).  Thus, Hester's house, like her mind, has become something of a museum and a prison...there are things in it she'd rather forget but can't.  However, although Hester has become a recluse, this does not prevent her from taking many a secret lover!  So, although a part of Hester's life is lost forever (Paradise Lost) she has gained a new one - albeit tainted with grief and guilt but also coloured with secrets and passions.

Now a bit about what I've been up to.  Well, as you can see in the picture immediately above, I have made good use of an old Cigar box that I purloined from the Sanson market for only two bucks (!) this weekend.  Perfect!  It fits the format and size of Alicia's book perfectly.  I love the fact that it's Jamaican and that one of my favourite stories in the whole wide world is Jean Rhy's Wide Sargasso Sea.  Hester reminds me of the mad woman in the attic (Rhys' story is a spin on Jane Eyre - from the point of view of the first wife).  In Jane Eyre, the mad woman in the attic tries to burn down the house. In Alicia's story, Hester uses fire as a means of dispatch.  Of course, I'll say no more here, lest I give the whole story away!

The front of my page looks like this - I've used crackle paint (Ranger's Black Soot - thanks Alicia for sending me a bottle!) and a range of metallic paints.  Heavy duty watercolour paper was used to get a really awesome thick texture that I then took to with my red colouring pencil.  The result is pretty specky if I say so myself.  A secret hides under the door and the black void of the front cover will contain an illustration.

The book opens from right to left to reveal a hidden compartment.  The lid of my cigar box (the right flap) still needs work and I plan on putting a vignette on it. To the left is the lid of the compartment.  Let's open it up, shall we...

Crap photo this one, but it gives you an idea.  Little compartments will be carved out of the book I have placed in the compartment.  The book, as mentioned earlier, is Paradise Lost, though I'm still deciding about that.  I may yet just make a series of frames for the compartments.  Anyone got any tips on how to carve nice little boxes out of the book?

I'm really proud of this paper lining the box! I hand dyed it myself and I love the way it has come out all marbled like that.  This is the secret compartment area.  Like I said, I'm still undecided about how I'm going to frame the forgotten artifacts I have.  Nor have I gotten any closer to a solution as to how I'm going to allow book binding to happen, since the box opens right to left instead of left to right.  Give me time, I might do the whole book within a drawer thing yet.  Lisa S - that video you sent us needs to be up here.  I love the whole idea of a book within a drawer within a box thing!

Alicia's book arrives!  I open the box to find...

Now, just a quick little post about the receipt of Alicia's book in the post.  Here are the photos I took.  Hopefully I haven't conveyed some of the trembling excitement I experienced when opening the box.  If the shots are fuzzy or shaky looking, at least you know why! Lol!

I feel like Howard Carter as he opens Tutankhamun's Tomb!

What is this???

A book is revealed!

Is there a story contained within?

Ooooh, a couple of diary entries and an obituary. Hmmm....

More exciting reading...

The blank contents of my part of this wonderous book.  (Go to first picture of this posting to see what I've done so far...)


  1. Note, I took many more million phots but I don't want to give anything away, so it'll just have to wait until we get our book about this project published.

  2. omg, omg. guess who is peeing their pants right now!? me!!! and i'm typing with black, blue and brown paints all over my fingers and covering all the letters with a painty sludge and i don't even care! i am so in love with all that you've done and are showing us and i'm going to freak out. are you home? probably not -- and i will just have to wait to ring you. grr. i love you so mucho, my sweetest, sweet friend!!

    (oddly, i'm working on something for your book too as i've been having pulp withdrawls, thus the paint all over the place. eek, including my glasses.)

  3. i have a binding idea. i just saw it play before me like a mini movie in super fast motion. wowz.


  4. I just commented on your blog post...but I gotta say YOU SO DO ROCK! Both of you...I feel like I am at the cliff hanger part of a movie just waiting to see what happens next...

  5. Alicia - ha ha. You're so funny. Well, if you do pee your pants, remember to soak them straight away in a bucket full of "Bam! and the stain is gone!" Hoots!
    Lisa - I KNOW what you mean abotu the cliff-hanger thing. Even I can't wait to see what happens next and I'm the one who is supposed to come up with what happens next, lol!
    Oooooh Alicia - what's your binding idea? Can I do it for you or do you want me to leave the binding out altogether and you can do it when you get your book back?

  6. well, my sweetness, i think it would be easiest to explain it to you via the phone with little images i could digitally draw and email to you. which side is the side that should be bound? the paradise side or the other side? i have two ideas and my idea will depend upon your response. part of it you can do if you'd like, or i can do it later.

    i wrote you a 6 paragraph response on your blog and dumb google lost it. i will email you shortly -- about time to put finn to bed.

    i feel the same way as BOTH of you -- total cliff-hanger! i can't wait to get kim's book!!!

  7. i just can't stop looking at this or drooling. it's making me crazy not having a book here to work on. i am going CRAZY here. you girls are all so lucky. :)

  8. Oh dear, Alicia. As my mother always said: Good things come to those who wait, you know! In the meantime, I've sent an email to you with an assignment on it, to keep you busy while Kim finishes her beautiful book. Hi Kim!!

  9. your mum is smart!! got the email and respond shortly. i have two ideas to accompany your assignment. :) and better drawings of binding idea coming too. what i sent last night was confusing and mildly drunken (two beers = inability to explain things properly).

  10. Ooh just catching up here. Can't wait to see where you go with this baby Debs. Lovin the secret compartment ideas! Have been busy creating much mess in the studio now, so don't panic if you don't hear much from me, I'm hard at it again, LOL! Phew , glad you have an assignment for Alicia while she waits for my book Debs, thanks! Can't have her sitting around with nothing to do, LOL! Yeah, like that would ever happen! Paradise lost, now there's a great title to add to the pot!

  11. oooh, kimmykimkim! i'm so very excited and i will not panic. :) i have lots to do for sure -- working on four christmas and solstice presents this week and two big secret things. actually, so big and so secret that i will just email you guys. shhhhhh.


  12. all those secret places and mysterious stories you and Alicia are so talented at creating! You both are such an amazing artists...can't wait to see where this little trip goes! I love the title of the book..haven't seen that before though there is always something new and exciting to see! Lovin this party!

  13. Ok - I'm back from la la land, thanks to Alicia for ringing me up and saying "oooiii - Lisa S has just posted up her work" (my god, Lisa - just AMAZING! - See my comment on your Lucky Dip blog)and "oooiii...are you still alive?". Well, not quite those words, but you know what I mean, lol!
    Amyway - I've posted an update.

  14. oooh, wow. i am so loving this, lady! it's funny -- i had refreshed the blog last night to see if there was anything new (around 1 AM i think) and ten seconds later you told me to check. refreshed several times and then went to sleep 'cause it wasn't up yet. what a fantastic thing to wake up to!

    i lovelovelove all of these little bits, and the red! the compartments are so wonderfully cool. i love the little book (where did you get that?) and i utterly adore the little mechanical pieces and the hairpin and it all!

    more of her little secrets are coming to surface, perhaps. people may realize that her diary page was not entirely honest, huh? the web of deceit, the daughter.... never mind. i'm not awake yet, lol. loving this, lady! was nice to chat tonight and i shall talk to you again soon! get skype! it's free!!

  15. Alicia - THAT little book was once green and it came all the way from Portland, Oregon, from this amazingly clever and exceptionally talented chick who lives with an amazing musician and an equally amazing and talented son.

  16. haha, i THOUGHT so, but i knew the book was green. :) the boys are yelling at me -- tree time. more soon. xo!

  17. This is such a tease Debs! I like the idea of the compartments and the little things inside. That little book begs for further investigation...Right now I feel like I am playing cludeo and I am collecting the clues to try and work out who 'dun' what!