Wonder31 #9: Wallpaper

"Cocktail music is accepted as audible wallpaper." 
Alistair Cooke

My original plan  was to paint a page of dreamy florals, sweeping swooshes of painterly paint. The kind of designs on my Patterns & Repeats board. But my geometric mood {you CAN be in a geometric mood, can't you?} and almost defaulted to my standard response to something like this - a page of repeating patterns.

So what on earth is wallpaper? Can we deconstruct this decorative wall covering? It's patterned or textured paper that you adhere to a wall, often with ornate or geometric patterns. It is a covering, an embellishment. Home Improvement stores used to have heavy volumes of wallpaper books that you could sign out and bring back. 

What are my memories of wallpaper? When I was growing up, the wallpaper in our kitchen had vertical stripes and rust colored roosters. When we bought our house a decade ago, wallpaper was out of favor so we have zero wallpaper! This prompt reminded me of the wallpaper in the bathrooms and the kitchen of our old house, and I haven't thought about those patterns in YEARS so that was a fun excursion. 

Here's my ridiculously literal translation! A paper wall. You can play with the actual words, turn them around, take the compound word and reverse it. A wall of paper. Not a wall to keep people in or out. I'd already painted these pages in moody cloudy sky colors and I had a stack of colorful painted index cards so the match was made in heaven, as they say. Vivid papers against a moody background.  I cut the index cards into strips and adhered them along with a few odds and ends for general quirkiness. And I love it!

Another fun way to interpret this prompt would be to create a grid and fill each box of the grid with a different pattern. i.e., lattice, greek key, flourish, faux textures, damask, suzani, trellis, medallion, stripe, grasscloth, etc.

Here's a grid that I did in the 5x8" gridded Moleskine that I started at the beginning of 2016 {so I'm one year into the project, and the journal is half-filled and still engaging my curiosity!} where I'm limiting my work to black, white & gray. 

Thanks for your positive feedback about my interpretations - I feel more comfortable in the prompt-writing chair and this is pushing me to think differently, even to incorporate some symbolic elements on my pages. Here's a note I received from a reader who's doing Wonder31 and taking the Novel Approach workshop, "I have really enjoyed seeing your experiments and what you have done with them. This is very inspiring for me, it helps open some doors and give me thoughts about how I could interpret them in my own ways."

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Here's an index to all of the Wonder31 Prompts

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