Tuesday, March 25, 2008
I've been creating books for a few years now and it remains one of my "low key" passions. This is a leather wrap around journal with simple signature stitching. The cover is printed with a design using my Lost Aussie Designs stamps and hand coloured with acrylic inks.
I am an art journalist. I LOVE my art journals. As with many others who live in the AJ world, finding the *right* book in which to art journal is a pretty tricky thing to do. It has to look right. It has to be the right size. It has to feel good. It has to be able to withstand a battering of acrylics, papers, inks, and images. It has to accept being written upon without tearing or smudging. And above all, they have to LOOK like I want them to!
All this criteria led me to begin making my own journals. While I will never be a master book binder (in fact I tend towards the grunge side of art), I have fallen in love with the journals I can make meet ALL of my requirements. I will occasionally alter a Moleskine (large size, lavender wrapper) and it will suit my needs for a while, but then I typically end up going back to binding my own books.
When all is said and done, I have ended up with many different variations on a theme. However I must confess that my favorite handbound AJs are those pictured.
all signatures pamphlet bound with waxed linen thread
covers made from canvas board
spine made from primed canvas
page 140 lb hot press Artistico watercolor paper
VOILA! You have an art journal!
Graffito Book - taught by Kelly Kilmer - my favorite because so many techniques were used and best use of my color skills.
This is my book called The Old World Book. It is a workshop I have taught over the years, and has always been one of my favorites because the students are so happy in the end- and their books always look beautiful!
Since I discovered stamping 4 years ago a new world opened for me. After following a workshop to make an envelopbook, I started creating small books (7/10 cm or 2,75 / 3,9 inch). I even started a course of bookbinding this year because of my small books. I love it all: making my own backgroundpaper (with paint, making marbled paper...) making a collage with stamps, vintage photographs, embellishments,using newly learned skills (linen books with a relief on it)... sewing the book together....I love the small size of them : they fit in your pocket or in your purse. You can house ATC's in them or make a diary of it...
What I love most about them is when I have a commission to make a book for someone special, I can make them one of a kind ( I never make the same one again) and especially for the one it is asked for. I ask the person who gives me the commission to tell me something of the person it is for: is it for a special occasion, what are their favorite colors, their hobby's... and then I create something with my skills and my creativity for this person only. So they are really "unique"...
This is my Melange Book. The word "melange" means a motley assortment of things, which is appropo for this altered book. This is my most favorite altered book that I've created. Why? Because I think I felt the most free with my art work in this book, and also the most enthusiastic and motivated about making it. I think for me, I pushed the envelope on this book, and that the result is some of my best art work to date.
The ornate cover is from a vintage encyclopedia, which was gutted, and the pages I made were sewn in. I used rusted fabric, other fabric, copper mesh, a brass light switch, a real leaf (preserved with gel medium), and some rusted found objects. I really tried to mix it up in this book, and make it a true "motley assortment of things". I also did some embroidery, and some hand beading, and one of my best collages.
I worked on this book over a period of three months, from start to finish. And I didn't do it alone, because this was a project of my local book arts group. Well, yes, I did a lot of it alone, but also some of it with my group. I never would've done this book if it hadn't been a project of my group.