Sunday, September 30, 2007

World Handwriting Champ-pen! Again!

Ann's retired the World Handwriting Champ-Pen Crown, having won it for the third year in a row! Details at (follow the prompts to get to her entry).

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

"Beautiful Words" at Mansfield Community Arts Center

Opening March 24, 2007. Here's Ann with Donald Perrone, the exhibit's curator, looking at some of her pieces in the show.

and looking at the work of an Arabic calligrapher

the UK alumni award for Donna Boyd, A Letter of Columbus, Thurber's University Days (these books products of Logan Elm Press, with the sixteenth-century Herodotus above.

Mansfield area wellness practitioner Willow, Ann, and Donald contemplate more Arabic callifgraphy.

the gallery

Ann and Columbus artist Pamela Feldman-Hill, who also has pieces in the exhibition

Monday, January 15, 2007

Paper Marbling Samples and workshops

Pictures from some of my workshops and studio, and samples of my work follow.

Members of the Aldus Society watch Ann demonstrate another pattern,

and then take the plunge themselves, at a workshop in Ann's North Linden studio

2007 marks Ann's 23rd year as one of Greater Columbus Arts Council's Artists in Schools. Below, after hearing a brief history of marbling and seeing Ann demonstrate its technique and tools, students create their own papers, which are often used later as covers for journals that will house their creative writing. This program is one that Ann uses specifically to integrate art and science learning, joining with both academic and art faculty to follow up with experiments that demonstrate the chemistry of marbling--students learn not only a new and beautiful technique, but natural phenomena such as surface tension that help explain how and why marbling works, knowledge that can be used, as in a science laboratory, to control and perfect outcomes.

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

World Champ-Pen -- Again!

Getting it "Write" in Columbus, for Top Honors
--a press release from the World Handwriting Contest, 7/3/06
For the second time in two years, Columbus resident Ann Alaia Woods (calligrapher, author, owner of Aimia Artworks) has won the top prize in an international competition:the World Handwriting Contest sponsored by Pen World International( ) and directed by Kate Gladstone (owner of Handwriting Repair), Albany, NY ( ).

Last year, Woods won the top prize for cursive writing in her age group (Senior Division). This year, her writing won her the top prize for artistic writing in her age group. Last year - and again this year - Woods' fluent, clear, and gracefulpenmanship also held its own against samples from other handwriting contests, submitted to the World Handwriting Contest for comparison. Beating all these contenders in appearance, fluency, and legibility, Ann Alaia Woods' handwriting won a special inter-contest award as"World Pen-Champ" last year, and again this year. Woods, and the year's other first- and second-prize winners will receive their awards - fine writing instruments - from the Contest's main corporate sponsor, Pen WorldMagazine( ), an international publication dedicated to the users and collectors of high-quality pens. Contest director Kate Gladstone commented: "I enjoy the opportunityto see each year's new crop of prize-winning handwritings - all legible, all beautiful, and all as different as snowflakes."

For more information about the contest, visit the World Handwriting Contest website

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Let's Marble!

Ann Alaia Woods of Aimia Art Works with a sample of paper marbled in the Spanish style

Ann Alaia Woods with Thomas Elementary school students through the Artists-in-the-Schools program of the Greater Columbus Arts Council

Clintonville artist Ann Alaia Woods will again conduct day-long workshops in the art of Turkish paper marbling this summer in her Linden area studio. Offered only once every two years, each workshop is limited to 8 participants.

traditional Turkish pattern used as endpapers in a fine binding

In a process kept cloaked in secrecy for centuries by artisans serving the Ottoman Emperors and by members of European craft guilds, this style of marbling produces one-of-a-kind prints by floating watercolors on a specially prepared bath. Both the intricate traditional patterns and more free-form contemporary techniques will be explored in the workshop.

Spanish style marbling with ink

Marbled papers were used traditionally as endpapers and covers in fine bindings in the West; today they find much broader application. A standard brand of facial tissues, for example, uses a marbled pattern on its box. Woods’ marbled papers have graced menus and annual reports of national firms in Columbus, as well as being privately commissioned for fine bindings and framing.

free style marbling

Known as a calligrapher and book artist, Woods is also the reigning World Handwriting Champion. She has been marbling papers for use in her own work for more than two decades, and has been teaching the art at workshops regionally and through the Greater Columbus Arts Council’s Artist-in-the-Schools program. She has marbled for the public in demonstrations for Nationwide Insurance, Columbus’ Cultural Arts Center, the Dard Hunter Studios in Chillicothe, and for local arts groups.

traditional stone pattern

No prior experience is necessary. This is instant gratification art! There are still openings for August 12 or 26. The workshop on August 19 is filled.


Charmed by its swirling threads of line and color, we are still as drawn to marbling today as were those who first saw it in the Near East some six centuries ago. How was it done? Why don’t the watercolors sink, or blend? Why doesn’t the image wash off this paper? How is the look of marble replicated? How are the intricate patterns made? This workshop dispels the mystery but not the magic of traditional marbling, with instruction in historic patterns as well as modern variations; then, as time permits, we will delve into fantasy marbling techniques. You will have enough time and materials to create unique papers for endless creative uses.

marlbing demo in Chillicothe

All basic marbling supplies are included in the fee. Just come prepared to have a great time! ...with these several things for your own use (or to share, as appropriate):
Work clothes, or an apron or smock
Hair covering--if you’d rather pass on this rare chance to model a generic shower cap!
Sensible shoes--you will be on your feet a great deal
Cardboard--corrugated weight (at least 15”x 20“) as a paper carrier
Newspapers--a small stack to interleave your finished papers
Paper and pen-- for taking notes--always essential
Optional: If you like experimenting, you might want to bring one or more of these:
Asian papers--smooth, long-fiber (but not hairy) types--Hoshu, mulberry, calligraphy
Mat board scraps (12”x 16” max)--the older the better
Silk, silk twill, polyester blends, other non-linty fabric (pre-launder to remove sizing)

an adult student rakes a pattern

WHERE: 3304 Grasmere Avenue, Columbus 43224
WHEN: SATURDAY, August 12,* 19* or 26*---9-4:30.
The studio will also be open for use on SUNDAY from 12-5 p.m., at an
additional $10 charge, for anyone wanting to continue working.
* ALL CLASSES ARE FILLED! Contact at address below to be added to the waiting list

a workshop student lifts a print

COST: $80 + $20 COVERS ALL MATERIALS & SUPPLIES. Class limited to 8.
$40 deposit by June 1 holds a place and is refundable until August 1 if place can be filled.
Balance due at the class.
Make check to Ann Woods/AIMIA
and send, with the form below, to
3304 Grasmere Avenue, Columbus, OH 43224.


a student's finished piece drains


Ann rakes the bath at Mountain House, Chillicothe