Saturday, October 06, 2007

"Woman in Red"

What an intriguing story! Set in two different time periods on a small island off the coast of Washington, it begins with the present day as Alice has just been released from 9 years in prison. She was found guilty of crippling the man who hid and killed her child while driving drunk. He got away with it because he basically owned the whole island. Rebuffed by most of her neighbors and even her remaining son, she gradually becomes friends with Colin, a recovering alcoholic who hit bottom after his wife died on 9/11. As they get to know each other, they come to realize that her grandmother was "the woman in red" in his grandfather's most famous painting. (I couldn't help being reminded of Andrew Wyeth and his Helga paintings.) At this point, the author switches to 1943 and begins to tell the forbidden love story of William and Eleanor, interspersing it with the modern-day troubles of their grandchildren. This bare bones description doesn't do justice to the plot, or the characters. It was a page-turner and had a wonderful surprise ending.

This is another one of those rather "ugly" backgrounds that I've learned to trust will be just what I need for a particular book. See how the text page resembles sand and water. I could not have purposely created that. I would have tried too hard.

I frequently use matte medium as a glue. I like that it doesn't show if any oozes out. And I often use it on top of a picture when I want to reduce the glossiness. It works great when the picture is not too big, but I've had problems with wrinkles and air bubbles when it covers a whole page. So I tried a new technique this time and liked the results. I laid the picture on some wax paper and brushed the top with matte medium to counteract the shine. After it was dry, I applied double-sided tape on the back, just along the edge that would be next to the gutter. Then I put tape on 3 edges of the journal page and carefully rolled the picture down onto the page. I had purposely not cut the picture to size because I can never completely match it to the edges of the journal page. It's just easier to trim after it's stuck in place.

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