Sunday, October 28, 2018

New Journal

This is a new journal I made for a co-worker. It's 6" x 8" and the binding style is sewn-over-tapes. I used thick leather for the tapes.

I painted the covers in various blues with a smattering of teal. Several areas have really nice texture from the acrylic paint.

The signatures of various blue cardstock hold different kinds of artist papers.

Included is this pocket set I painted with acrylics on heavy 140 lb. watercolor paper.

This pocket was originally a calendar page by Jen Delyth.

This is a real library pocket; I grabbed a bunch when our library stopped using them and were throwing them out. There's a nice swirl from left-over acrylic paint on a brayer.

Sunday, September 16, 2018

Playing with Mixed Media in an Altered Book “Myths and Legends”

In May, I signed up for an online art journal class called “21 Secrets, The Best of 2014 & 2015.” Inspired by Catherine Anderson’s class Media Remix I decided to alter a hardback book for my experiments.

Using craft acrylics, I laid a background base. Then added magazine images, sometimes just the silhouette, and worked the pages with Caran d’Ache Neocolor II water soluble crayons as well as using Sakura Gellyroll Moonlight markers. On some spreads, I also added highly textured objects (my handmade stamp or my hair band clip) and did some rubbings with the crayons; that worked terrifically.

I really like using these different media on the page spreads. In the past, when trying to use a hardback book and artist grade heavy bodied acrylics, I would get frustrated because the paper just couldn’t stand up to that kind of paint. But craft acrylics is perfect since there isn’t a lot of thickness to it and not much pigment. The kind I used--DecoArt Americana--looks very matte on the page when scraped thinly with a plastic card or palette knife. And with the addition of the crayons, there was no chance the pages would stick together.

The original title of the book is “Myths and Legends of Ireland” so I’ve called this art journal “Myths and Legends.” Because I’ve started it with this distinctive style, I’m inclined to continue doing page spreads with these same ideas. Do you ever do that? Does it make it harder to change it up? Why do I feel every spread has to echo the previous ones? If an art journal a place of experimentation why keep everything the same? It does add to continuity to keeping a theme. Another altered book I did—and finished!—used only collage images; my tools were a sharp scissors and a glue stick. Tell me what your art journals are like.

Saturday, April 7, 2018

Printmaking with Book and Calendar Transfers on a Gel Plate

Loved the idea on the Gelli Arts blog that shows the imperfect experiments of Birgit. She used various magazine and book images to transfer an image on the plate and, once dried, pulled a print. Other artists have jumped on the idea and have shared their results.

Yesterday, tried it. Since Birgit mentioned she didn’t have much luck with heavy bodied acrylics, I went out and bought some craft acrylics. But, I had no luck with them and on my third try, I switched to my favorite Liquitex heavy bodied acrylics and had my first success.

98 lb. Strathmore Mixed Media paper 

Although I had a huge stack of possible magazine and book images to try, I stuck with what was working—black & white, high contract images from a photo book about John F. Kennedy.

140 lb. Fabriano Artistico hot press watercolor paper

140 lb. Fabriano Artistico hot press watercolor paper

Before stopping, I used some smaller, high contrast calendar images from Susan Boulet (1990 and 1991!) and they turned out well, also.

60 lb. Strathmore Sketch paper

98 lb. Strathmore Mixed Media paper 

Your result may vary. What worked for me:

Lots of contrast of darks and lights
Both black & white and color

98 lb. Strathmore Mixed Media paper (from the coil-bound Vision pad)
140 lb. Fabriano Artisitico hot press watercolor paper

Liquitex heavy bodied professional acrylic paint
Some Golden fluid acrylics-- if mixed with the heavy bodied ones (they dried too quickly)

Rub book/magazine image on plate firmly with a brayer and a bone folder

Still curious how and if the craft acrylics might work, how and if other book, calendar, and magazine images might work, how and if other papers might work (especially printmaking ones), I will continue experimenting.