Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Book Arts

I have been so intrigued with book arts lately. Also known as Artists Books. Or Artist's Books. Or even Artists' Books. (Apostrophe Controversy.) I've even been drawn away from fabric in my explorations. (Horrors!) I'm not sure where it all started, but I did order this book from Amazon.


It's quite good. Very basic, but creative and rather edgy. I learned lots of basics from the book including using alligator clips to hold signatures together while you bind them. And to use a piece of scrap paper to protect the signature from the clip so it doesn't dent or scratch the pages.

I can hardly wait for this book to come out. It's totally on my wish list.

I had a wonderful creating day with some other fiber artists a couple of weeks ago. Flo had an amazing stash of paper samples and other goodies. We all made books!

green book 

Here is a simple little "journal" I made. I cut pieces from a sample catalog, bound them, then added some cream paper squares and rectangles onto several pages. The pages are full of beautiful images, cut-outs and interesting edges, so the cream paper provides a space to actually write thoughts.

green book inside

Then I made an accordion book from one page printed with interesting bugs and animals. I followed directions from the book to make several cuts and folds and turn the one page into a long strip. I added "covers" cut from paint chips.accordian 

Still obsessed with books... when we were at the Center for Creative Connections at the Dallas Museum of Arts, I made another accordion book at the open studio table.


I used various sizes of cardboard for the pages. I connected them with orange masking tape. Then I decided to edge the whole thing with the orange masking tape. There were no scissors at the table, so that encouraged some creative problem solving.

Then I used green masking tape to add an element to each "page." acc2

The kids helped me add a verb to each page. Something that you might "do" with the element on the page. Tie with a string. Fly with a feather. Connect with a twist tie. Write with a pencil.

Find with a piece of a map.


Attach with rubber bands (and stretch with rubber bands on the other side of the page). Feel with a piece of velvet. Wrap with a piece of plastic.


Totally fun project to just sit and build. There is something freeing about using only the materials you have in front of you and having so pressure for the results.

But wait... there are still more books. At the last meeting of the Dallas Area Fiber Artists, Deanna Woods did a program about artists books and taught a mini-workshop. We made blank accordion books.

accordian closed

She taught us some excellent techniques using real book making materials. Very clean and straight and smooth. These are not generally terms used to describe my artwork. So it was a good exercise for me.

tall accordian

I also discovered an excellent entry in Wikipedia about books arts, which lead me to an amazing e-journal called The Bonefolder all about book arts. (I even bought a bone folder recently, since apparently this book interest isn't fading.) The Bonefolder is a free download! Check it out.

I've got more book ideas and projects brewing...


Candied Fabrics said...

Have you seen Sue's blog:
She's an art journal maker extraordinaire!

Kristin L said...

I so get this. I went the other way -- from the paper and the books to the fiber. I still have my bone folder too. If you can get your hands on the book "Cover to Cover" by Shereen LaPlantz, I think you would completely love it. (I just checked and Amazon's got it! http://www.amazon.com/Cover-Creative-Techniques-Beautiful-Journals/dp/0937274879)

Unknown said...

Deborah, I signed up to do a class with Sue Bleiweiss as recommended above - starts next week, making fabric covered journals with paper inside. Do you have time to join in? There is a link to Flickr site with photos of what her previous class made - just gorgeous!

Karoda said...

I bumped into the Bonefolder for the first time this week but didn't explore it, just saved it to my favorites. Sue's classes are always intrigue me but I've yet to take a class...there is so much interesting other arts not to take a diversion sometime:)

Sarah Ann Smith said...

Did you know that you are evil? Truly Wicked???? Or that I have book board and a punch and whatnot carefully stashed for when I have free time (and have had these a couple of eyars.... remember when we made our books for Frayed Edges... bought it then... still haven't had time to play).

Have you seen Gwen Diehn's The Decorated Page and The Decorated Journal? They are mostly about art journaling but have a little bit in the second book about making your own books. I've been devouring them, and yesterday tried some of her techniques.... PS... Friendly disclaimer: I am not responsible for any amazon.com expenses (or B&N or wherever) as a result of this comment LOL!

HUGS and miss you, and hi to Jeff and the kids, Sarah