BOOKS: A Series (1)

BOOKS: A Series (1)

webaA series exploring items of interest….relating in some way…to the book as object, concept, sculpture, artwork or idea.

web5Such as “Flights of Fancy or Imaginary Scraps” by Charles Carrick, in the collection of the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco.  I saw it at the De Young Museum.

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web6Amazing stuff.   Charles Carrick was a British printmaker who wrote “Poems: Serious, Humorous and Satirical,” published in 1870, and compiled a book of 216 drawings with poems and commentary. Unrequited love….was the inspiration.

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Flights of Fancy indeed.  Explore more Imaginary Scraps here.

Enjoy. May your imagination soar.

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And A Ribbon Ran Through It 3

And A Ribbon Ran Through It 3

“The Orange”

WEB1Pages created of  single folded sheets called “bifolia“.

WEB2Meditative pose..

WEB3Folded arms.

WEB4Ribbon slipped under stitches.

WEB5Each bifolium stitched to spine, and covers and spine stitched to felt, which hinged covers to spine and allows book to open.

WEB6Covers are textured with crumpled repurposed tissue that once separated metallic leaves, and Mod Podge.

WEB7Layered textures, patterns and colors. Ribbon used as a visual accent inside as well.

WEB8Ribbon “gesture” changes the look and feel of the piece.  Above, serious, sober, quiet.

WEB9Here, flirty…coquettish…ready for anything!

WEB90Ribbons folded into interior, slipped under inside stitch.

WEB91Gold leaf…shock top…juxtaposed verbiage creates text tension.

“Unfolding”

WEB1Old World Art” metallic leaf packing repurposed into folded pages stitched together like multiple signatures.

WEB2The orange of the repurposed tissue and strips of ribbon sang together.

WEB3Pages unfold and create sculptural spaces.

WEB4Flattened…

WEB5Bound back…open spine.

WEB6The ribbon eventually was adhered…the color was fun to play with.

“Open Book 1”

WEBc“Arms outstretched”…

WEBdPolka dots…

WEBeAnd more polka dots…

“Open Book 2”

WEBhInside

WEBijpgOutside

WEBjjpgDots in a row…

And a Robbin Ran Through It.

And A Ribbon Ran Through It 2

And A Ribbon Ran Through It 2

The ribbon is a line, a shape, an adornment, utilitarian, a communicator of color, a texture…and strangely, emotional. Ribbons can even become anthropomorphic…(more on that in a subsequent post).

The following are all “signature” bindings.

WEBkRibbon becomes closure and design element.

WEBpWEBrRibbon integrated into book structure: held between cover boards and that which covers them.

WEBtWEBvTied and untied. Tried and untried?

WEBf WEBg WEBhClosed, open and seen from the back..

WEBa WEBb WEBc WEBdOpenness, step by step.

WEBi WEBjThe colors and patterns of the ribbon become integral to the design of the whole.

use of ribbon can engage the viewer, user, handler, of the piece…tying and untying, opening and closing, and where does the ribbon go when reading, writing or drawing in the book, or even “just” perusing it?

Something so deceptively simple becomes a source of mystery that continually changes.

Like Life.

And A Ribbon Ran Through It 1

And A Ribbon Ran Through It 1

WEB3Beyond adornment…ribbon can add mystery, privacy, secrecy…to a piece. When tied shut with a ribbon, an extra effort is required to open the book, and plummet its depths.

WEB5Side bound.

WEB1WEB2Front and back.

WEBaSingle signature with stitched ribbon.

WEBbSingle signature with glued ribbon and stitched edge.

WEB2Front and back inside cover ribbon framing.

WEBaRibbon closure with button and and stitched buttonhole.

WEBdWEBeRibbon embellishment.

WEBa1WEBcHyper ribbon embellishment.

WEB1Tied ribbon, woven ribbon, glued ribbon.

WEB1WEB2WEB3Woven and wrapped ribbon with repurposed felt button closure.

WEB1WEB2Accordion book ribbon ties using two ribbons.

WEB1Accordion book ribbon closures using one ribbon.

WEBfWEBeAccordion book ribbon glued under cover adornment.

WEB4WEB5Fan book ribbon ornament.

Wave your Flag!: Teens Create Flag Books in Honor of The Big Read

Wave your Flag!: Teens Create Flag Books in Honor of The Big Read

As a program of The Big Read in LA, 2016, I taught a flag bookmaking workshop at Verduga Hills High School. The Big Read book is Ray Bradbury‘s “Fahrenheit 451“, in which firemen light fires to burn books, instead of rescuing them from the flames. Although published over 60 years ago, the book remains uncomfortably relatable to present day issues. Even prescient at times.

Conducting the workshop with the teens was great.  I loved it, the students loved it, the school librarian loved it, and the classroom teacher loved it.  Here are a few images of what the students made.

WEB10Students had a choice of “flag” pages: rectangles of uniform size, cut from tagboard in an array of bright colors, repurposed library return cards offered up by the school librarian (treasures!), pieces of  sketchbook covers, and  one off items such at the card above, painted in black chalkboard paint and adorned with red letters and numbers.

WEB3Students used a variety of materials to create layered meaning through text and image.

WEB1They mixed it up, playing with pattern, visual texture and color in their compositions.

WEB8A curated selection of quotes from the book were available, and a number of students used them in their books.

WEB7These young artists had the passion!

WEB6They spoke their hearts.

WEB5“Meaningful elements remind us to live”

WEB2“Pura Vida” = Pure Life.  Setting the intention?

WEB12The color combinations were striking, and students had the chance to see first had how the red accordion spine looked different pared with green….

WEB11and blue. This ambitious young artist reassembled the words that had been cut from this sketchbook cover, to striking effect on his book.

WEB9The Flag Book is a potent vehicle for personal expression, allowing for visual and verbal content on its numerous surfaces, places and spaces, in the form of writing, drawing, collaging, note taking, photographs, and combinations of any and all of these.

Once makers see and experience the possibilities, they are off to the races, their creativity limited only by time and space.

Let the flags of your own creativity, ideas, thoughts and feelings wave! Ray Bradbury did.

 

 

 

Family Booking

Family Booking

It is wonderful to work with families, sharing with them a project through which they can experience the creative process. I had such an opportunity, leading a flag bookmaking workshop for residents of a building in Santa Monica owned and operated by the CCSM: The Community Corporation of Santa Monica. CCSM “Creates Housing and Strengthens Community.”

One of the ways it does that is to provide programming for building residents, which includes arts/crafts workshops. I have been gifted with the opportunity to lead several workshops, and this one was a blast. Both adults and children were able to complete a unique Flag Book, and had fun doing so while learning skills and techniques in the process, end expressing themselves creatively. What could be better?!

WEB3The black cover makes the letter’s in Mario’s name pop!

WEBeThis young Angel artist is adding all sorts of adornment to her Flag book creation.

WEBcMichael, recently turned five, who started out drawing, added layers of color, texture and mixed media to his book!

WEB9Michael’s book just vibrates with movement, action and vitality!

WEBdHis  Mom, Lynn, said, “I think I may be enjoying it more than he is. When you do projects with your children, it’s just fun!”  We agreed that adults, especially Moms, certainly deserve to have fun too!

WEBaBlue and orange, complimentary colors (opposite each other on the color wheel), contrast with pink and purple, which have red in common! Flag book color schemes are infinite!

WEBfSomeone loves pink!

WEB9cWEB9dSamantha’s Mom embellished both the powerful red and black front and back covers of her book using a variety of materials,  and tied it all together with silver cord!

This is the kind of experience that a teaching artist lives for. Here’s to more and more of them!

BookLand = FairyLand

BookLand = FairyLand

In a class called “Fairy Tales!” bookmaking becomes fairyland.

Students aged 4-6 draw fairies and other magical images on the “Fairy Glen Drop Cloth”, listen to Fairy Stories, and create wondrous books out of beautiful and fun materials.  The results are well, magical!

WEB8Accordion folded book…in pink.

WEB4These fairy-like girls depicted are the artist and her best friend.

WEB1We know who this “folded fan book” is for!

WEB2Three friends grace a page of this young artist’s “Flag Book”!

WEB3This patient and devoted young makers loves putting together collections of like materials and shapes.

WEB6Portfolios handmade out of humble file folders bound together with colorful shoelaces become magical….

WEB5beautiful…

WEB7and whimsical, festooned with ribbon, stickers and drawings.

WEB9To the right our “Fairy Glen” can be glimpsed…but it is the young bookmakers who truly cast the spell on this classroom and transform it into an art studio of creativity and enchantment.

The Studio defined…a magical place of wonder and transformation…

Linkage: How I Learned to Love to Link

Linkage: How I  Learned to Love to Link

The French Link

WEBbI recently learned the French Link stitch in a class, and then almost immediately made 7 books using it. I had struggled with the structure in class, and felt sure that if I could just sit down far from the maddening crowd in the relative sanctity of my studio, I could get comfortable with this process, and be on my way to mastering it. The little model above is my first solo flight, and it was fun, and gratifying.

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The Brown Bear Book. A Gift. For a Brown Bear. Made of paper, board, ribbon, Eco-fi felt and hemp cord. Five signatures, or sections, or three folios each. The “x” is the French Link.

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My book from class. Fun use of paper.

 

And maps. WEB4WEB5This book is composed of seven sections of four folios each. The links are created over the ribbons, which are then inserted through slits in the covers, glued to the inside of the covers, and then in this case, covered with paper.

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Getting daring, I employed three ribbons on this one, inspired by polkas dots, linking four sections of three folios each.

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The inside was fun.WEB4

There are some nifty-looking sites and tutorials out there that deal with the French Link, so i feel confident that should i need further support, it will be easy to find.  I hope this post has whetted your appetite…you have to love this stitch…its French! C’est si bon!

 

 

Books: unZIPPED

Books: unZIPPED

It can be fascinating, fun…and sometimes startling  to add elements to books that compel, or at least encourage engagement by giving the viewer, or, “handler”, (peruser?)  something to do. Books by their nature are most often opened and closed…but in what other ways can they move, or be moved?

WEB4WEB5This humble structure is informed by the Japanese concept of “Wabi-sabi“, an aesthetic of imperfection, impermanence, and even incompleteness. Repurposed cloth is sewn to thin, repurposed cardboard with jute cord, with other strips glued on inside. Repurposed paper passed to me by a colleague is sewn with jute to the cardboard spine in a single signature with a five-hole pamphlet stitch, to create the pages.

WEBcWEBhWEBnInspired by the cheesecake box from which it’s covers and spine are made, this piece was covered first in hand-me-down newsprint strips, then repurposed muslin fragments, then appliquéd (in the strict sense of the term) with repurposed lace and a zipper. It’s pages are five single folded sheet signatures, or bifolium , sewn to the spine with unwaxed linen thread.

WEB2WEB1This multiple signature (technically “section“) book is made from repurposed cardboard, acid-free drawing paper, hemp cord, a zipper, and Eco-fi felt. The signatures technically bifolium, are sewn onto a strip of the “felt”, which is then centered and glued over the spine. The book is covered, or “wrapped” in Eco-fi felt, which is used to decorative effect, and gives it a “cozy” feel. The zipper is glued to the spine.

web1web3This book is constructed in the same way as the one above, except that the pages are created from a  single signature, and three zippers are applied, making sound effects when engaged.

Participation encouraged. Books are made to interact with.

Material World (4)

Material World (4)

One of the pleasures and deep satisfactions of bookmaking is delving into the visual, visceral, and tactile pleasures of materials.  Though many artists do not make the kind of money that allows for indulgence in what might be termed, “material pleasures”, we may be seen as materialistic…for materials are the very warp and weft of our trade.  We can find our way to the ineffable through immersion in the materials and techniques we choose to create with. Here I share some of my own investigation into the qualities inherent in materials that create texture. Though I am a visual artist, I find the sense of touch as powerful as that of sight, and am fascinated with how the two work together.


web1“A Stitch in Time Saves 9”, Flag Book, Title stitched onto flags, covers textured with crumpled tissue paper and adhesive, collage and repurposed beads stitched onto cover.

WEBaTextured Fan, covers covered with textured, painted and glazed paper, accordion spine made of repurposed Neutra VDL House brochure

WEB4“Brown Paper Bag”, Covers textured with crushed plain brown paper and brown paper bags, bound with hemp cord.

WEB4PaperPaintPlant, single signature binding, using paper containing plant material.

WEBcTeapot Book, Japanese Side Stab binding using thick highly textured handmade paper for covers, and drawing paper for pages, teapot rubber-stamped.

Synesthesia” isa rare neurological condition in which two or more of the senses entwine.”

The sense of sight and the sense of touch. How can we separate the two?  Does something feel like what it looks like, or does it look like what it feels like? Powerful questions for anyone working in the visual, or any realm of communication and expression.  Powerful stuff.