Tuesday, May 15, 2018

My Salvaged Journal

In my last post I mentioned that I was taking a class with Roben-Marie Smith called Salvaged Journal. In this class we made a journal out of an old book and filled it with various of types of paper and ephemera in various sizes. It's almost like the junk journal concept that was popular w few years back. I had completed the journal in mid-April and have slowly begun to work on the pages.



Since the book I used had these great etchings on the cover of a bird, a flower, and a leaf, I knew I wanted to use this journal as a nature journal. It has a lot of pages in it so it should last me through all four seasons. I love starting it in Spring, which is my favorite season and the season in which the birds return. What I am finding with this journal, with its variety of paper types and page sizes, is that is encourages experimentation with art mediums. Here are a few of my pages before adding art:


For my title page I used one of my favorite techniques: hand cut letters. I used pages from an older National Geographic magazine because I love the vintage colors used in magazine photographs from the 50's and 60's.


So far I have a mix of pages using collage, paint, magazine photos, my own photos, painted tissue paper collage, and painted tissue paper cut letters.










I am really enjoying experimenting in this journal with different types of art mediums. It's good to stretch myself creatively. I have also learned that whenever I take a class it's important to me to keep my own style. Roben-Marie has more of an abstract style to her collage, and while I did try her style with some of the lessons, I found it just didn't feel like me. It's good to try other types of art and styles when taking class but it's also okay to take those lessons and adapt them to fit your own style and artistic voice. It's also encouraging to realize after a few years of making art that I have developed my own style. 

This weekend my friend Rox and I take our annual visit to the wildlife refuge on Lake Erie to experience spring bird migration. We have one of the top 5 birding spots in the country so close to us! Over the years we have exposed a few of our young friends to birding and will continue with that tradition this year. I hope to include some of my photos and observations in my new journal.

Some of my favorite art and bookmaking supplies:

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Thursday, May 3, 2018

Everyday Journal April Update & More


I absolutely love Spring, but April this year has been a disappointment. Cold, overcast, snow as late as last Thursday - little is blooming and the leaves have not begun their arrival...until this week. On Tuesday it was 80 degrees, sunny and beautiful. The pear tree in our front yard had buds on it in the  morning and in evening when I got home it was in full bloom. I think nature is just as happy to see spring weather as people are!

I have not done a lot of art this month. I made a few pages in my Everyday Journal:




The 100 Day Project began on April 4th but I have only completed a few collage pages. I'm not sweating it and will just make pages when I can. I'm keeping with a "words" theme after doing Advent Words and Lent Words. My theme for the 100 Day Project this year is #100daysofcollagewords.






I had not taken any online art classes this year so I signed up Roben-Marie Smith's class called Salvaged: A Layered Pieces Journal. The class is about altering an old book into a journal and filling it with a variety of papers and ephemera. Altering old books into journals is not new for me but Roben-Marie taught us a way of binding the spine that I had not tried before. It has been a lot of fun gathering papers to fill it with. The class is not finished but here is my progress to date.




I used some old tea-dyed muslin I had for the spine and then stitched a few x's in it because I ran across a great spool of linen thread when I was digging in my quilting/cross stitch supply boxes.  The book is 8x11", which is larger than I normally like for an art journal, but I was drawn to the nature etchings on the cover. It did make finding paper large enough for the pages a challenge as you use paper folded in half to make the book signatures. I managed though! I'll post some pictures of the inside on a future post.

I reconnected with thrift shopping this month. It's been a while and I'm not sure why. Maybe it's more of a warmer weather activity. I did a shopping day with my daughter earlier in the month/ Another day with my hubby, and then last weekend the hubby and I went to a flea market. How I love digging around for old books and papers and other items! In addition to some books, a few vintage office items, and some ledger paper, I found some great wallpaper sample books, a bag of old letters and even a half full box of old Dennison's labels! The thrill of the vintage hunt is back on!

I'm going to see how the wallpaper works as background pages in an art journal.


I guess I did more art in April then I thought. It was just more building a journal than actual art pages. On to May!