I tried to write a nice concise blog post about how I got into the situation of being able to make a lithograph at the same studio where Picasso and Chagall worked and where Matisse’s “Jazz” was printed, but it is a confluence of such random circumstances, that it just kept being too long.
I’m leaving out the juicy “before” details, and maybe one day I’ll cover them in a post or podcast, but here’s the important part.
I’m lucky to have become good friends with Frank Stack, and he took me to Paris several times as his assistant between 2010 and 2013 (I speak French well enough, and I’m handy with a metro map). Before Frank started his own print studio here in Columbia, MO, he wanted to pay a visit to Idem in Paris along with the man who would be helping him run it, Jeffrey.
We went to Paris for two weeks in October of 2011 and along with our regular itinerary of museum trips (at least one a day), the three of us went to Idem to work on prints and consult with the owner, Patrice. Oh, and by the way, David Lynch was there working on a new edition of prints too- I told you, random and unbelievable!
I was in a terrible mood for much of the first week. Frank really wanted me to do a print, and I couldn’t get a good thing out on the stone. I tried to do a self portrait- meh. Tried not to do anything- Frank didn’t like that. Then, I decided to do something for the shop.
Here it is. It’s a print of a lady on an old-fashioned (albeit fantasy) sewing machine and she has her leg up on the table, because I’m trying to immortalize my mother’s constant reminder to us all to “Thread with your foot up”. Read here about why it’s so important to thread with your foot up.
I cheered up while producing this. I also cheered up, because halfway through our trip, my then boyfriend surprised me by flying to Paris and proposing to me. He’s my husband now, and we have a cute little baby. I told you- the whole thing sounds unbelievable even to me!
One funny thing is that, when you do a lithograph, everything is printed in mirror image, so all of the text had to be written backwards (that’s why the cursive is a little shaky). After we printed the first proof, I noticed that one of my “S’s” was backwards. I got a stern look from one of the printing assistants, and I had to scrape it off and fix it- Derrick took a picture. It’s a little dark, but that’s me hunched over my stone inside a printing press.
I have all of my prints. I’ve got one hanging up at the shop on an old sewing machine needle, unframed. I need to frame them, and hey, maybe someone will want to buy one someday.
Happy Sewing, Happy Drawing, Happy Living, to everyone!