Thursday, March 24, 2011

Altered Book Project Update and Spring Break

Well Spring Break is more than half over. I haven't worked much on art yet, but the rest of the week will be devoted to creative time.  The first half of the week(and weekend), was taken up with time spent visiting family. It was nice to get out of town for a few days, but as always, it was nice to get home.  Yesterday I spent some time adding some things to my Etsy shop. I have several things to add, but each one takes time, so I have to work on a few at a time. 

Spring is officially here and I finally saw some trees and daffodils blooming this week. The weather has been nice, but it is supposed to change tomorrow and get cooler.  So it will be easy to stay inside and work on art related projects! But I will be looking for more signs of Spring and warmer weather to come.

I mentioned in an earlier post, that one of my classes is working on Altered Book projects.  These are made from discarded books and can be made into anything you can imagine. They could be made into journals, scrapbooks, or simply a work of art.  Here are some photos of more of my pages from the altered book project.  This is definitely a project to work on over time (at least for me). I have painted and glued together more pages.  Some pages are completely painted, some are painted partially allowing the text and illustrations to show through the paint.

This is the Title Page of the Book, "Drawing with Ink".  I have painted a glaze over both pages allowing some of the text and illustrations from the book to show through.  This is just step 1.  I will be adding more things to these pages as I go.

Step One:  Starry Night Page
These two pages were simply painted blue with some swirls. There was an image of a handprint on the right side page that I allowed to show through the paint. 

Step Two:  Starry Night Page
Here I have glued an image and some text that was on one of the pages that I removed from the book.  It is an illustration of Vincent Van Gogh with some biographical info. in the text.  I tore the edges to roughen up the look.  I will be adding more to these pages in the future and I will post some updated pictures when I do.

Tips for altering books (so far):
~ remove several pages throughout the book. The pages will get thicker as you add paint and glue things onto the pages. This will help keep the thickness of the book manageable. You will probably want it to close when its finished.  I removed pages that did not have elements that I want to use in my design and I removed some with images that I will glue onto other pages. 
~ glue some pages together to create a more rigid surface to paint on.  Look for images or text that can be used in your design.  You can cut 'windows' in some pages to allow the next page to partially show through.
~ Take photos of the book before you begin...I forgot to do that! And more photos as you go. I like to look at the progress and it helps to have step by step photos when teaching a new project.  This is my first altered book, so I need examples to show my students.  I also have some books that shows altered book techniques, to show my students.

I'm working on more pen and ink drawings this week. I will post photos when I finish the set of 2 drawings.  I finished this one a few weeks ago.

Pen and Ink Home Portrait
8 x 10 inches
Thanks for looking!

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Looking for Spring Break and Spring Weather!

One more week until spring break and I'm really looking forward to having a little break.  Even though I have alot to do during the break and before then.  This week was the last week of the quarter at school, so I've been busy grading papers while keeping the students on task with their current projects. They are ready for a break too, so no explanations necessary on how hyper most of the students are!  I am also looking forward to some warmer weather! Its been so cool and damp lately.  I now some sunshine will bring along with it some energy and motivation!   I've been really wanting to get into some clay lately, but haven't had the time, so I'm going to make the time today. 

Before I go off to the studio though, I was reading through some blogs that I follow and found a post on one that mentions that their is a 'widget' that you can post Treasuries from Etsy, on your blog.  This is news to me, so I thought that I would try it out also. My little houses have been featured in a lot of treasuries lately and I really appreciate all of the Etsy members who include me in their treasuries!

Thanks for looking! 

Here is one of the latest treasuries.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Altered Book Experiments and More

I just finished another pen and ink commission and have 3 more waiting to be started.  Commissions are good.  Lack of time to play and experiment makes me sad. Spring Break is in two weeks! I'm hoping that that break will give me a boost of motivation!  This dreary, rainy weather has me in a funk this weekend.  So I thought I would post a picture of my pink dog sculpture to add something whimsical.  As a project in one of my classes, we made sculptures out of plaster strips.  As a demo for the project, I created this dog.  I didn't take pictures as I created her.  She looked pretty rough at first and I didn't think she would make it to the final stage, but I think the pink color and the face added just what she needed.  Some of my students named her Rex, but we later decided on Roxy after she was painted pink! Later I will post a picture of some of their projects, if they want them posted online.

Another project that we are working on is Altered Books.  I was able to get ahold of some old books that were being discarded from the library.  I collected several stacks with the idea of doing a class project with altered art books.  I'm showing a few shots of the altered book that I have been working on.  My advanced art class is working on this altered book project as an ongoing project for the rest of the semester, as they have time. I am trying to work on one with them, when I have a little time.  They see me working on projects that they do and that helps to inspire them with what they can do with their books. They also inspire me, so it works both ways.  This is a new medium to me and it reminds me alot of mixed media collage, but in a book format.  I have seen some examples that artists used a journals along with their artwork.  So it looked pretty interesting to me and I hope to finish it, but it may take awhile, with all of the other projects that I need to be working on.  I'll post more photos as I go.

The first photo shows the book cover that I have already painted.  I plan to add some more things to the cover later.  The second photo is the inside of the back of the book that I painted.  The old library checkout card and pocket are painted also.  I didn't want to remove them. I wanted them to be part of the art.

Thanks for looking!


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