Today is Father's Day here in the UK (and I understand in other places around the world as well). My Dad died a few years back and yes I miss the old devil everyday.
The "memory bit"
My Dad loved me very much, even if he did say to the midwife when she showed him me in my cot in the hospital, can I have that one instead. I was his first born and his only daughter and I was a tomboy, never a girly girl and he expected me to stand on my own two feet and not expect anyone else to do things for me (which means I find it really hard to accept help and people being kind today).
My Dad used to write me long letters when I was at Uni that he wrote over a number of days in the most beautiful copperplate handwriting learnt at the same primary school I went too. He'd tell me what was going on at home, what my brothers were doing, which cats were sat with him, what they'd all had for tea and what did I think to the Archers storyline this week.
My Dad would come and pick me up from Uni early on a Saturday morning whenever I wanted to come home (I only got badly drunk on a Friday once, trying to pack suitcases on a Saturday morning with a hangover wasn't good). We'd have to stop at the tool shop just outside Wolverhampton (where I went to Uni or Polytechnic as it was then) so he could buy another drill or socket set, he didn't need them, but tools were goodies, shiny new things to play with (umm sounds familiar, just swap tools for stamps)
My Dad used to laugh hysterically at the London Marathon every year when they used to show the poor souls who'd hit the wall and we're falling over and staggering along, he knew it was bad but he just couldn't help it.
My Dad a shy man who made a speech at my wedding in front of everyone and became every ones best friend and a disco king at the evening reception. It took my Mum 30 minutes to walk him home from the Village Hall reception (its a 5 minutes walk max) because he walked into the hedge three times and fell off the kerb twice. He was desperate to phone me when he got in, Mum wouldn't let him and he never remembered what he wanted to say.
My Dad was the first person I heard swear, the man that introduced me to photography, the man who'd be tutting at the state of my wheels on my car (get that brake dust washed off), the man who helped us make our vegetable garden, the man that introduced me to sitting in the living room with the curtains shut watching the cricket, the man who would wait patiently for the Grand Prix on a Sunday and then fall asleep withing the first 10 minutes, the man who would tell us to be quiet so he could watch the weather (a habit I've now developed), the man who played wrestling with me and my brothers every Saturday afternoon in the living room and nearly cracked his head open on the hearth when we'd all pinned him down to submit in Big Daddy style.
There are so many memories that I shared with my Dad, but this photo is his memory, his time doing National Service in the late 50's first in Honiton on basic training and then in Germany in REME, before he got married, before he thought about kids. A young man in the big wide world, who apparently went AWOL after missing the ferry in Harwich, refused his Sargent's strips, laughed on parade and wrote the best ever accident report his commanding officer had ever seen (even if he did drive a metal spike into a German road in order to tow a truck out of a turnip field in front of a busload of German housewives).
My Dad xx
The "art bit"
I stuck a load of scrap Kraft card that I'd embossed in folders on another piece of patterned Kraft card. A layer of Taupe Fresco paint, then Crackle Glaze and then a top layer of a pale grey Eco paint.
Distress Inks on top of this in various Browns to catch the embossing and Glimmer mists in brown lightly misted on. I also added a few drops of a Slate Glimmer mist to add contrast and pick up the black and white of the photo.
Stamped the clocks in Potting Shed Archival
The photo is a photocopy that I glued on a page of text and then added layers of Fresco Matte Glaze to seal it. A thin wash of the pale gray to obscure the text top left and bottom.
This was stitched onto a piece of linen.
Added pencil lines around the photo and the Dad or Daddy definition. Finally a layer of beeswax added all over and then Pebble alcohol ink in the corners.
A spare piece of embossed card under the linen and a tag with various PaperArtsy word stamps.