Scroll to top
Make graceful and lasting change

My heart

Cindy Tonkin - October 15, 2023

This piece is a kind of meditation on my divorce 10.5 years in. 

It consists of a concertina with  pre-made envelopes on each fold – essentially a single flag where the flags are envelopes. 

Inside each envelope is a quote from a poem or song or book, each about hearts. The inserts are double sided

This is heavily related to a work I did a while ago The Light in my heart. The quote was repeated several times within the book.

I started out doing this similarly, separating the quotes over several pages, using some paisley decorated cardboard.

The paisley cardboard I bought in the late 90s at officeworks – make-your-own business cards. This was before I started making art, so it was both a bid to have cheap business cards and a bid to be a little creative. Now no one uses cards and i have more money to buy business cards anyway, so it’s just paper with perforations in it)

I cut out the words on the cricut with some old gold cardboard, i think from Rina, Meaghan’s mum. You can see photos of some of them below. It looked good.

Then I decorated the envelopes with the same card.And then it needed some navy blue to set off the cards inside.

It looked good but it didn’t work. As it turns out, if the interior of the book is a “choose your own adventure” the reader does not get the message, and the message isn’t clear and all of those commuincation things we know.

So i kept one of the cards, and added more cricut cut words.

i know this, but i forget it, the cricut cut letters are more useful in negative space, gluing on individual letters is never smooth, never aligned and infinitely slow from idea to execution if it works at all, with my strengths and weaknesses, i know that, yet still i visualise sticking on the letters with too many small fonts!

The message (and the meaning) of the piece changed as i worked on it over several days (with a few 4 – 6 hour stints).

Here is the “maquette” of it. I call all my work a maquette now. That way i don’t have to make it perfect. I’m not entering a prize, only a select few people see them when they are done, so i should focus on what makes me happy with the work.

on this one, for the record I’m not happy with my glue work, the cricut blade ripped at the paper and obscured some letters.

the subject matter is still an ongoing obsession / meditation. I think i’m growing but i still need my heart!!

Lessons, lest I forget (again) many of the things that came back to me in the making (and learnt since as I persevere with the several hundred envelopes I still have available:

  • messages must be contained within each page, not spread across pages (although now I’m thinking what about a booklet?)
  • stay with one font throughout
  • stay with one orientation throughout (i did both landscape and portrait in this one
  • think about decorting the envelopes, it looks good and gives the book more substance / less flimsy
  • orient the enveloped to open towards the reader (the one I just glued together has them the other way round and it’s hard to get the things out of the envelopes)
  • workshop the right depth of cut on the cricut so removing letters from the page isn’t part of the gig
  • use nice paper
  • take care with glue
  • put a new blade in the cricut if needs be (now much cheaper thanks to amazon)
  • make an envelope for the envelopes? currrently carryng this

Related posts