Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Journey Through Bookland - An Altered Art Adventure

"For Art is Nature made by Man
To Man the interpreter of God."
Owen Meredith (Lord Lytton) - The Artist St. 26

I have wanted to alter a book for some time now but have not found quiet the right book. I would visit local flea markets, scour all the books, read all sorts of interesting titles that would prompt ideas, purchase a book, bring it home, and not be able to bring myself to actually alter it. I finally figured out that I was buying books I actually liked which made it impossible to alter. So this time I tried a different strategy, I looked for a title that intrigued me but not a book I liked. I settled upon a book by the title of JOURNEYS THROUGH BOOKLAND. I loved the title, words almost always spark my ideas and this one summed up my attempt at this new to me art form. It would be a journey not only as a new art form but to use the book as a journal, to really make it personal. I decided not to get all caught up in doing it "right" but just doing it for the pleasure of doing it. I decided to create the pages and if writing accompanied it right then fine, if not, I left writing space and will go back at any given time I feel inspired and write then. So far I have done a little to the cover and three two page spreads pictured below:



For the spine I masked off the edges and painted a one inch strip on each side of the spine in a warm brown color. I then glazed it with a brownish bronze metallic glaze mix and topped that off with a little metallic gold glaze mix that I lightly wiped off. I left the original title of the book intact and just glazed heavily over it and painted the brown sections between the titles glazing the the same as the spine edges. I then used a gold metallic pen to outline and detail the title. For the front and back cover I wanted a sort of leather look so I used plain brown packing paper cut an inch larger than I needed, wet it thoroughly, crumpled it into a tight ball, gently unfolded it and spread it out, without removing too many wrinkles, and let it dry. Once it was dry I covered the front of the book and one piece of the brown paper with gel medium. I lined up the edge of the paper overlapping the painted edge a little and smoothed the paper into place. I trimmed off the extra and applied the medium to the edges for an extra bond. I repeated the process on the back cover. I decided to leave it as is until I complete the end of the book and then I will embellish the cover.





For the first few pages I used gel medium to glue together three pages to make one sturdy page, placing wax paper between each set of pages while drying to keep them from sticking. I then decorated the inside cover and title page keeping some of the original text. I used brown shoe polish on the background then added some torn mulberry papers, a dried leaf, a magazine cutout, some text cut from magazines, a few rub on letters, a piece of brown lined paper, and some brown ink and chalk for antiquing. I used gel medium to secure all the layers. The page has an Autumnal theme to it because the magazine cutout I chose had the leaves, pear, and welcome on them, I just expanded upon that theme.

For the next double page layout I used some pastel chalks to create a background. I left the original text as it happens to be a poem I love. I highlighted some of the poems words with darker smudges of chalks. I painted the daffodil using watercolors and watercolor paper. After it was dry I cut it out and used gel medium to adhere it to the page. I used some of the blue chalk to darken the background around the flower and page edges. I added a tiny blue vellum envelope with a triple matted mini photo of the first daffodil that bloomed this past Spring in our front flower bed. I secured the photo just peeking out of the envelope. I left the field of blue background blank for later journaling. I sealed the pages with a spray on fixative for watercolors and chalks so it would not smudge or rub off.


The other two page spread I have completed is my favorite so far as it represents a beautiful memory made with my daughter, Kelli. I coated both pages with gesso and let it dry. I then used two colors of craft paint a light green and a teal blue. I sponged them on letting a little of the white gesso show through. I wanted a verdigris type finish. I scanned two photos of my daughter, changed them to black and white in my photo program, and then printed them out on white card stock. I used chalks to color them in and sealed them with a spray fixative. I used some torn strips of decorative tissue paper and attached them to the pages with gel medium. I then attached to pictures. I used a cutout from a reproduced vintage paper doll sheet that looks as if she is placing flowers in Kelli's hair. I used some rubber stamps, gold ink, and gold embossing powder to further embellish the pages. I used a quote from a Jane Austin book along the side of one of the pages first writing it with a gold pen and then going back over it with a very fine black pen. Lastly I journaled about our beautiful day together.


I hope you have enjoyed this journey thus far with me. I have enjoyed sharing it. I will post more of my art adventure as I add new pages. Right now I must put this project aside as I just got the things I ordered from ALPHA STAMPS, http://www.alphastamps.com/ for the Mother Goose Fabric ATC swap I am participating in. I am ready to dive into yet another art adventure.

Artfully Yours,

Sandy B.

Photos: My altered art journal

Thursday, August 16, 2007

WELCOME!

"Come in the evening, or come in the morning,
Come when you're looked for, or come without warning,
Kisses and welcome you'll find here before you,
And the ofener you come the more I'll adore you."

Thomas O. Davis - The Welcome





Welcome to Quill Cottage where words and art coexist in blissful harmony. I want to welcome you to my world of creativity and writing and introduce myself to the world of blogging.

I am all about faith, family, friends, and home. I love living a creative life whether it is through God's creation, the work of my own hands or that of others. My life philosophies are living out my faith in everyday life, being grateful, people are more important than projects (they are the only things we get to take to heaven with us), laughter IS the best medicine, being positive, perseverance, and persistence pay off, and each day is a gift to be celebrated. Each and every morning we wake up to a new and fresh beginning with no mistakes in it (that is until we mess it up), each space on the calendar is full of endless possibilities, 365 new sunrises and sunsets, 52 fresh weeks, 4 new and changing seasons to cherish, and 12 months of holidays and ample opportunity for memories to be made. My hope is that you will feel welcome, find inspiration, share ideas, and make new friends.
I am new to the blogging world and this is my very first post - something to celebrate! I found the world of blogs while searching for art journals on the web. I became hooked as I looked at all the eye candy of art and words. I was inspired to try my first altered book/journal, which is still a work in progress (I will post on this later and show the work thus far). I have been an avid journal keeper for years and have at times combined my art with words then moved to adding photography, etc. but I have not taken it to the level many other artist out there have done. So one of my goals is exercise more creativity with my art to balance out my writing.
This seems to be a time of new beginnings for me. My other new endeavor is to participate in an ATC swap. This will be my first ever swap and my first ever ATC's. This a Mother Goose Fabric ATC swap being held in conjunction with Alpha Stamps and is being sponsored by Creative Swaps. For details visit http://creativeswaps.blogspot.com/ . My head is overflowing with ideas for these mini works of art and I can't wait to delve into the project. I will also post these with pictures when they are finished. Well, that about wraps up this first post so I will close for now. May the Lord bless and keep you. May His face shine upon you. May He be gracious unto you and bless you with peace.
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