Sondheim uses a series of simple questions to convey a heart-breaking situation. Desiree, a beautiful actress once had an affair with Fredrik. Years later she meets him again and he is in an unconsummated relationship with a young woman. Desiree proposes to him, but he rejects her offer, too in love with his young wife to leave her. The song is a blend of regret, anger and love. Desiree's wounded pride and disappointment are conveyed through the simplest of words and within quite a limited musical range: the result is just divine. Here is what I made inspired by this song.
My intention was to make a diptych, with a purpose that I will reveal later. I took two thin canvases from 'The Works.' I painted them with a couple of coats of 'Little Black Dress', PaperArtsy Fresco Finish paint and then some Crackle Glaze. While this was drying, I made my own Washi tape with masking tape, painted and stencilled then stamped with Ink and the Dog Mini 30.
I painted over my crackled boards with PaperArtsy Mermaid Fresco, used some Grunge Paste coloured with a little Spanish Mulberry through a Crafters Workshop Harlequin stencil and stamped in Wendy Vecchi Potting Soil Archival, again using the PaperArtsy Ink and the Dog Mini 30. The masking tape was then used to attach the canvasses so that they looked like the covers of a book.
Now it was time for some fun adding clownish elements. This was my initial layout, but I always spend lots of time arranging the pieces before I finally come up with a composition I like. For Fredrik and Desiree I used Lynne Perrella Collection 004 and 006 stamps by PaperArtsy. I die cut arched windows from linen, using a Tim Holtz die. I then painted these with layers of Fresco in Mermaid, Antarctic and Inky Pool edged with French Roast. Mixing the paint with some Fabric Medium really helped it to flow smoothly and enabled me to get some shaded effects. The Harlequin ribbon had been in my stash for a long time and I'd never quite known what to do with it. I love this bare tree ribbon and on this project I thought it could symbolize that it is now too late for Desiree and Fredrik: that old relationship will not bear fruit. The little hats are also painted on fabric and they come from LPC003.
As you can see, I finally changed my layout considerably and added some new elements including a tiny Shrink Plastic clown hat! The black and white seemed rather stark, so I stamped it with the medieval script from PaperArtsy Mini 26 in Potting Soil Archival ink. I changed the position of the Tim Holtz flower with the resin rose at its centre, accented in Treasure Gold in Sapphire and Florentine. The butterfly on the left is made from interfacing courtesy of Lesley Ebdon, painted and stamped and Frantaged! The sentiments on the theme of 'clowning' are from PaperArtsy Ink and the Dog stamped onto some beautiful tea-stained fabric all the way from my lovely Magpie Cousin, Dianne in Canada! I combined needlework with the other techniques on this project and here are some details - sorry for so many pictures!
I decided to leave Desiree with the hat she already had!
The fabric pieces in the top left-hand corner are the love-letters Fredrik might have written Desiree long ago! I used die-cut left-over baby wipes covered in Frantage for one layer of petals on the rose over to the right! I also over-stitched some gold mesh onto Desiree's gown.
...And I almost forgot - a bunch of rusted keys, a lovely charm given me by my dear friend Lucy. Poor Desiree, just as she was ready to unlock the door to Fredrik, she found 'nobody there'.
The diptych stands like an open book...
and inside are Desiree's keepsakes and...
A home for Post-it notes that can stand on our dresser. The fairy Pierrette is one of Sandra Evertson's beautiful 'Petite Whimsy' stamps.
An image transfer of a Picasso Harlequin from Altered Pages onto fabric; lots of stamped and painty layers and some Indian Mirror Work braid were added before the finishing touch - the lyrics!
Are we a pair?
Me here at last on the ground,
You in mid-air.
Send in the clowns...
Isn't it rich?
Isn't it queer?
Losing my timing this late
In my career?
And where are the clowns?
Quick, send in the clowns.
Don't bother - they're here.
So if you're still around, waiting for them to send in the clowns, thank you so much for your patience in looking at all those pictures. I should like to enter my diptych for the 'With a Song in your Heart' Our Creative Corner Challenge. Have a great week, full of music and songs!