Monday, October 10, 2011

That's Amore Part III (It's a Little Sketchy)

Are You Familiar With Ephemera?

Antique Italian Clipart



1919 Vintage Italian newspaper





Early 1900's Italian passport

From Merriam Webster Online

ephem·era

noun \i-ˈfe-mər-ə, -ˈfem-rə\
plural ephemera also ephem·er·ae\-mər-ē, -rē\ or ephemeras
1
: something of no lasting significance —usually used in plural
2
ephemera plural : paper items (as papers, newspapers, posters, programs, broadsides, and tickets) that were originally meant to be discarded after use but have since become collectibles




I am a Big Fan of Ephemera . . .





I love this antique map from the
1700 World Atlas by that time's innovative
cartographer  Guillaume de L’isle and . . .

(Technically the map is not ephemera,
but it IS antique paper.)





Vintage Venice Postcard




Vintage Rome Postcard, Temple of Castor and Pollux


these vintage Italian postcards and . . .



Unpublished 18th century Italian paper from The Grabhorn Collection

this beautiful 1700's Italian paper sample from an unpublished book.

I find so much design inspiration in ephemera.



The Friday before I started first grade at Delta Academy, known for its first two years as County Day School, in Marks, MS, my mother took me to visit my classroom which was actually the garage apartment of a small house in a residential neighborhood.

That afternoon, armed with the list that
 Mrs. Hastings had provided us with, 
Mother and I made a visit to the Marks 
Ben Franklin, which we fondly referred to as 
"the dimestore."


The much beloved Marks Ben Franklin "Dimestore" owned by the Mayfields

We carefully selected all the tablets, fat pencils, fat crayons, watercolors, and tempera paints that were specified on the list.   We also bought a brown book satchel (backpacks were ONLY for campers then) and a metal lunchbox whose matching thermos would soon be broken into a million pieces.  


When we got home, I carefully laid out all my supplies on my little desk and began
my waiting . . .

and waiting until Monday, periodically carefully examining all my supplies, making sure they were in perfect order for MONDAY, when I would finally get to use them and begin my important grown up work.


My first grade school picture


1966 County Day Schoolers in music practice. 
First graders are on the front row, from left:
Me, James C., Rosemary B., and Chris C.



I have loved, well actually coveted, paper, tablets, notebooks, pencils, and art supplies ever since. 


These notebooks are more to my taste now
and would make fabulous travel journals.




Unpublished 18th century Italian paper from The Grabhorn Collection

My good friend, designer, and artist Beth Dean often packs up her art supplies and travels to Italy.  When she is not working on her plein air painting and her studio oils, she has begun keeping travel journals. 



Beth has her backpack loaded and ready for plein air painting
and travel journaling


Beth makes small notes and sketches in her journal as she travels and adds watercolors and bits of ephemera like train tickets and receipts to enhance them. 




The results are completely charming, and Beth swears that just looking back through them later brings every detail of the trip back, including smells, tastes, and even tiny snippets of conversation.

I cannot wait to take one of Beth's
new travel journal classes.




ROMA . . .






Vintage Italian Postcard, Coliseum in Rome








Vintage Italian Postcard, Castel Sant Angelo in Rome



Unpublished 18th century Italian paper from The Grabhorn Collection




I love the Residenza Napoleone III
Hotel when in Roma . . .


















The hotel, which is actually just two suites, is splendid. It was the home of
 Emperor Napoleon III in 1830 and has been completely and lavishly restored.


Unpublished 18th century Italian paper from The Grabhorn Collection











Unpublished 18th century Italian paper from The Grabhorn Collection



BETH'S TRAVEL TIP FOR ROMA:
WALK!  around every corner is something fabulous and it really is a VERY easy city to navigate.  Just put on your walking shoes, grab a GOOD map, and walk!



TOSCANO . . .














Beth Dean
Oil on Canvas



Unpublished 18th century Italian paper from The Grabhorn Collection











In Tuscany's Maremma countryside, the L'Andama Hotel and Spa is secluded and styled like a hunting lodge . . .


I love the earthy colors used in the hotel.  They actually seem to glow in the Tuscan light.






Outside view at the L'Andana



Unpublished 18th century Italian paper from The Grabhorn Collection


BETH'S TRAVEL TIP FOR TOSCANO:
You need a car to really see Tuscany. Stop in some of the smaller hamlets - not just the more famous ones in the guide books. Take your time - don't rush from village to village.  Every village has main piazza or "centro storico" - sit outside at a bar, have a glass of wine or an apertivo, and watch the "passiegiatta" where all the locals gather starting around 5:00 pm.  



CAPRI . . .







"Ischia Porto"
Beth Dean
Oil on Canvas






"Piece of Paradise"
Beth Dean
Oil on Canvas


Unpublished 18th century Italian paper from The Grabhorn Collection


I love the chic, yet old resort feel of Capri, and the JK Place Hotel Capri mirrors it perfectly for me.














Unpublished 18th century Italian paper from The Grabhorn Collection





 

"Faraglioni of Capri"
Beth Dean
Oil on Canvas



BETH'S TRAVEL TIP FOR CAPRI:
Don't make the mistake of going only for a day trip. Spend a few nights, go up to Anacapri and see Axel Muenthe's Villa San Michele, ride the chairlift, go for a swim and have drinks in the piazzetta, known as "the sitting room of  world".  Capri is at it's most charming AFTER all the day-trippers have gone!  It is a very romantic place - one of the most beautiful on earth!






VENEZIA . . .




Vintage Venetian Travel Poster, ca 1920






Vintage Postcard, Venice





"Venezia Boats"
Beth Dean
Oil on Canvas


Vintage Postcard, Venice





"The Artist and the Navigator"
Beth Dean
Oil on Canvas




Unpublished 18th century Italian paper from The Grabhorn Collection



One of my first memories of Venice was of people sitting here at the venerable 16th century Gritti Palace Hotel,  having cocktails, while we came in on the water.










I still haven't stayed here, but I think I will on my next trip.






BETH'S TRAVEL TIP FOR VENEZIA:
A magical place to arrive on the water.  Be sure to get your Vaporetto Pass so you can jump on and off the local "water bus" to navigate your way around. This is a city for walking!  You WILL get lost, everyone does, so just enjoy the adventure.  Sooner or later you will bump into a canal and you can figure out where you are. 


Arrivederci Italia!
Grazie Mille



Photo Credits:  Paper to Love on Ebay,  Passport Collector.com, New Visions2010 via Yahoo Flikr, Postcards of the Past, All paper samples are from an unpublished album of eighteenth century Italian paper samples from The Robert Grabhorn Collection of the San Francisco Public Library Special Thanks to Andrea Grimes, Marilyn Storey, Marks the Good Old Days on Facebook, Beth Dean, Rezidenza Napoleone III Hotel, L'Andama Hotel, JK Place Hotel Capri, Gritti Palace Hotel

Special Thanks to:

Beth Dean Studio
and on Facebook at Beth Dean Studio
 Accepting Commissions
and class enrollments




Painted with beer, because there was no water!
No wonder the details are a little sketchy!


1 comment :

  1. I love this post...never been to Italy, but feel I'm destined to go. So, does Beth Dean REALLY teach classes on travel journaling? If not, she should, and I'd be the first to sign up! Thanks, as always, for your unique take on things. This is always a highlight of my week!

    ReplyDelete