Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Book of Dreams...getting started {The Book}

Ok, let's get started here. First to answer a few questions that have come up. No, you absolutely do NOT have to have a blog to participate. If you really want to show off your pages, you could email them to me and I can post them here. Otherwise we'd love to hear through the comments section how everyone is doing and if you choose to post pictures on a blog, please send the link. If anyone has any questions that they want to ask me personally along the way you can reach me at artsy_mama@hotmail.com I will try to answer questions in the comments section as well.

Now lets talk about choosing a book to work in. You have several options here. If you absolutely cannot stand the thought of altering an actual book, you could use a blank journal or photo scrapbook like the one shown below. I purchased this at Borders bookstore and I love that it bound with the ribbon. That way you can add or subtract pages, it can get very chunky and there's plenty of room to grow. It also has nice heavyweight cardstock pages that are nice to work on for mixed media work.

In looking more closely at Citrus Faire's book (our inspiration for this challenge) it looks as if she just used the cover and back of a very old book and "gutted" it. She added the pages in after they were finished. Does anyone know a good way to do this? One technique I noticed that she used in another book, is she punched two or three holes in each of her pages, attached eyelets and bound them to the skeleton of the old book with ribbon. You can see it fairly easily on her work here.


Finally, you can alter an actual book that you find at a garage sale, estate sale, library sale, wherever. In using this technique you may want to glue two or more pages together (a glue stick works fine for this) to make them more sturdy and able to handle paint and/or heavy embellishments that you add. The book will definitely get very chunky and will not close after awhile, but that's part of the tactile fun of it all. One thing that's neat about using an actual book is that you can use paints and glazes (which we'll talk about later) that you can see the words through and that adds neat interest to your pages.

Check out this really, really cool book that Pam made using pieces of old books and putting them together accordian style. Wow!!

So the first task is to find what kind of book you want to work in. Then you may want to decide on what kind of interpretation of Book of Dreams you'd like to work with. As mentioned before, you could have the book a mixed media representation of your actual dreams you have, you could make it dreams that you aspire to achieve, or just inspiration in general. The sky is the limit! I love how Michelle said today that she's going to feature bits and pieces of her favorite poems. Great idea! I think it also would be reallly fun if people shared their interpretation of this theme in the comments section.

I plan to post each new technique on Wednesdays. Lastly, I wanted to mention that I am by no means an expert here. I look forward to all of sharing our thoughts and tips along the way. So if you have anything you'd like to mention, like what kind of book you've found works best, or doesn't work well, please email me or leave your thoughts in the comments section. I think we all really have a lot to offer one another and look forward to sharing this journey as a community of dreamers. Have fun hunting for a book and we'll see you back here!

12 comments:

Deborah said...
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Deborah said...

Thank you for doing this...I'm very excited! I plan on using an old book, gutting it, then rebinding it with new signatures. I'm going to use various Haiku as inspiration as I feel they are so dreamlike by nature.

So... off to "hunt and gather"!

Cheers!

gudrun said...

I'm really looking foreward to this.
I think I have decided to use an old book to alter. Haven't done that earlier, so I'm pretty exited to try out this new teqnique.

Lilli said...

Thanks so much for the update/guidance :) I bought an old book this morning, which should work fine.

A piece of advice from someone I talked to today, who is experienced in altering books. I was talking about removing some of the original pages so there would be room to add all the paraphernalia I have in mind. She said that removing pages tends to weaken the integrity of the book's spine, because it reduces bulk and hence tension. She suggested to instead cut whatever pages I want to remove, with an Xacto knife about a 1/4 inch from the spine-side of the page. This will preserve the spine's bulk.

I like your idea of gluing pages together. If I do decide to remove pages, maybe I'll hide the cuts between 2 glued pages.

I was looking at Pam Garrison's book too, just this morning :)

Lilli said...

I meant to say, also, that your idea sounds great too, of just leaving all the pages there, and appreciating the bulkiness as the end product of much love and creativity :)

Deborah said...

I've created a blog just for this project
http://bookofdreaming.blogspot.com/

Laura said...

I am so excited that you are doing this. I am going to try using an old book. I am new to your blog and started to look through your art and came across your Lowell Fabric book of your son and absolutely, LOVE, LOVE IT. How did you create it, please tell , I would like to start one for my son and daughter.
Laura
zdsart@ameritech.net

aNgi b said...

so excited to start a new project along with my unfinished project- LOL

i appreciate the weekly time-frame too : )

wonderful idea! i will alter a used book... too bad it can't be my current economics textbook! that book is driving me insane : ) and i'd love to gut it out- he he(JK)

MARYBETH said...

Hi,
This is good timing for me1 I just posted my Easter journal page I did which will go into the HAND MADE WOMENS JOURNAL i made at KELLY KILMER"S CLASS a month ago.
THis is going to be fun-if I can remember my dreams.
Namaste

twistedsoda said...

this is so up my alley...what a gloriously fabulous idea girl!!! I'll be there every step of the way! Off to look for 'the' book tomorrow!

la vie en rose said...

i'm so excited but i will admit that seeing the fabulous work of yourself and others is a bit overwhelming...but so inspiring and exciting. i can't wait to start. i did choose a book yesterday from a used book store--it's a book of poetry by emily dickinson. i also picked up a few other old books to rip pages out of and use over the course of this journey--a japanese textbook, a conversational spanish book, a crossword dictionary, and a french dictionary (although britton thinks this one is his and i'm not sure how to get it away from him.) i've never put together an altered book so this will be a brand new experience for me. we'll see how it compares/contrasts to the moleskin.

Sharon in TX said...

So kool that you added the participants links. I'm in but no blog. I guess I'm going to have to make blog. Here is my question, how can I create art if I can't stop looking at it on the net. I am just blown away with all of you.