Sunday, November 1, 2009

KYPADI Altered Book Group

Along with two friends (Kyla and Pam), we decided to get together at least once a month to learn how to alter a book.  Pam and Kyla both chose the theme of "nature" and I'd just bought a Hans Christian Anderson Fairy Tale book from our local Op Shop for $2 so decided to alter that.  I just loved what Kyla and Pam were doing with nature, so decided to change my theme of "fairy tales" to "The Nature of Fairy Tales", so I can also incorporate nature into my book too, whilst also relating to the particular fairy tale that appears on the spread.

Here are the pictures of what I've done so far ... there have already been some great learning experiences as well:

So here's the cover of my book as it stands ... it won't look like this at the end.

The first technique we were all to attempt is Beeswax. My first spread is the fairy tale Wild Swans. Throughout the book there are drawn pictures and printed pictures, which I plan to use as much as possible. On this spread I covered the pages lightly with gesso, then sprayed with Olive & Old Leather Glimmer Mists. I didn't realise this, but the glimmer mists react with gesso and gave the pages this cool marble effect that I really like. I hand coloured the picture with watercolour pencils, and glued it back into the book, then stamped around the edges. I added leaves from our property (also stamped so they'd tie in with the background) and sewing thread randomly placed around the pages before covering it all with beeswax.

Technique number two is "Found Words", where we were to use the words that appear in the book but have them say something different.  No fairy tale being depicted this time as I wanted my design to tie in with the the words ... "Radiant and beautiful, she is delicate tender and kind.  Remember speak into the heart of the fairy and like a dream, the hope of the sunset came, though it must be fresh, they found for their sakes."  The words probably don't mean that much, but I thought they were somewhat poetic relating to a fairy and a sunset.  So my spread starts with a painted background, Tim Holtz stamps in orange and yellow.  Gold, Patina, Lime Green & Spanish Copper rub 'n' buff rubbed around the edges.  A fairy I created with leaves as wings, a stick as a staff and bits of paper-bark added around.

There were a number of learning experiences with this technique ... originally I'd blanked out the words with masking fluid and when I tried to remove it, the words and pages ripped out as well (see image below).  Luckily, I'd photocopied the page to practice which words I was going to use, so ended up adding the photocopied page back into the book ... probably a bit of a cheat, but I wanted to stick with what I'd come up with.

So after realising that masking fluid might work great on watercolour paper, it doesn't work so great on old text paper, so I started cutting out the sticky bit of "post-it notes" to fit over the words.  Another learning experience from Pam is to have a copy of your words, 'cause when you've painted over your little post-it notes, they're really hard to find and lift up ... but they did work a treat.

Technique number 3 that we're all going to have a go at is "Masking Tape".  I saw an article in Somerset Studio (Volume 12, Issue 2) where the artist Donna Bauermiller used Masking Tape in her art journals and we all loved how it turned out, so that's what we're to do next ... but because I'm having so much fun, I decided to try another technique that I read about in "Altered Books Workshop" by Bev Brazelton called Stippling.  The fairy tale is the Ugly Duckling, so I left the words and a drawn picture to show through.  I started with a stippling or stencilling brush in Ranger Antique Linen Distress Ink, then used Adirondack Ginger, the next layer is a light coverage of Adirondack Espresso.  I ripped a piece of paper and then placed this around the edges and stippled Espresso ink to create the border.  I cut out one of the Ugly Duckling printed pictues and stuck them on top of the drawn picture and stuck the Ugly Duckling image in with foam tape so he stood out a little.  I added words from the actual fairy tale and on the left a few feathers adhered with more words.

This is what I've done so far, so when I've got more to show, I'll post again.

"I would rather live in a world where my life is surrounded by mystery than live in a world so small that my mind could comprehend it."
~Harry Emerson Fosdick, 1878-1969, American Clergyman~


Samantha Marshall said...


thekathrynwheel said...

Oh wow. This is really great - another technique cracked!I love it that everything you do is so different. I never know what to expect when I visit your blog.Always a surprise :-)

bockel24 said...

Hey, you´ve been busy! Looks like a great little group and a wonderful project! Thanks for showing and explaining the details.

Jen Crossley said...

Wow this beautiful I love it