Monday, May 31, 2010

Red Roses

I couldn't resist sharing another set of my vintage gluebook pages! I've learned so much about the art of collage through this process. I've also learned some unexpected things about my own personal style along the way. I was surprised to find myself repeatedly drawn to large images, two page spreads, and deep red hues. Those elements pop up often in my work. But I'm trying to mix it up as much as possible! I love seeing the work of the other students in the class, and you can check it out too on Flickr. The creativity of the other participants is amazing! Enjoy!

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Telling Your Story (sans lipgloss!)

The woman with the camera in this photo is the lovely Lynda Heines! Lynda stopped by the studio recently to interview me for her biweekly column Telling Your Story. Lynda is exploring the various ways people choose to share their stories with others. I love the art of altering books, and was delighted to jabber away on the subject for as long as Lynda would listen! You can read the resulting interview here. (Please note that if I had known my picture was going to be in the paper, I would have put on lip gloss!)

I have a groaning shelf of books on the subject of altering books, but my newest favorite is Playing with Books. What an irresitible title! And resist I did not! When I saw this book available on it went straight into my cart. When it arrived in the mail I swooned a bit, and then made this fun business card holder. Of course, I plan to use it for vintage postcards, photos, and other bits and pieces, as you can see from the picture. The author, Jason Thompson, owns the Rag and Bone Bindery, and specializes in beautifully handcrafted journals. The book is packed with projects, and gorgeous photos of incredible works of art using old books. ( many times can the word book appear in one paragraph? Six by my count!)
As I folded the pages for my business card holder, I was suddenly transported to my 10 year old self and my very first business venture. I remembered folding the big edition of the Sears catalog in exactly the same way to create a door stop! I made two of these hefty beauties, and sold them to obliging neighbors for 50 cents each! I had altered my first book, and I didn't even realize it!
I have lots more to say on this subject, and many more books to recommend, but I'll save that for another post! If you want to read about Lynda's adventures in altered books, check out her blog Bloom, Bake, Create. Happy altering Lynda and everyone else!

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Gluebook challenge: Size in Composition

Today's lesson included a challenge: create a balanced collage using only 3 elements on the page, a background and 2 additional pieces. The key to creating a pleasing composition is the size of the elements in relation to each other. I decided to use the same background on each page, sheets from a crumbling-to-bits music book. These sheets are very delicate and tear easily, so I discovered that it worked better to put the gluestick on the notebook page and then gently press the music sheet onto that. We weren't supposed to focus on color, but I wanted to do one page with a very monochromatic palette, and one with a vivid pop of color, to see how that changed the exercise. I started with a much smaller version of the thoughtful lady on the right, but she was quickly lost in a sea of music! The larger image was a much better fit. I LOVE the bright colors in the image on the left, so I wanted to use it in its entirety. I printed out several copies of this image, and I originally cut out a strip of the brightly colored rug to use as a border across the top of the page.That proved to be a bit too much! So I used a strip of the music paper instead. I'm happy with the results, but I know as I learn more from my class, I'll probably wish I had made different choices! But I'm enjoying the journey!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Gluebookin' on the Go!

In the midst of my errands today I decided to take a break at my favorite bookstore and do some vintage gluebookin'! On my way out the door this morning, I had tossed my supplies in my tote just in case. I set up shop at an isolated table (because cutting paper in a quiet book store is surprisingly loud) and went to town snipping and pasting! I have a feeling I'll be posting about this topic often!

Monday, May 17, 2010

Vintage Gluebook Class

Paper, glue stick, scissors, and a blank notebook: these simple elements are all you need to create a vintage gluebook! I joined an online gluebook class via Green Paper today, and I'm having a ball! It's amazingly freeing to use just a few basic supplies instead of the piles of ink, glitter, ribbons, buttons, and more that usually spill over the sides of my worktable. Of course, at first I found myself instinctively reaching for those goodies, but after I finished my first very simple collage, I felt free to just cut and paste! If you want to join the fun, just click on the Green Paper Packages link in the sidebar.
I made this cover for my gluebook, (housed in my favorite krafty moleskine of course!)and the pages below, using the free downloadable images that are included in the class, and some of my own vast supply of paper bits and pieces. I printed the butterflies on vellum, cut one out, and used a tiny bit of Scor-tape to adhere it to the middle of the page, so that it flutters to life when the notebook is opened. Ah...paper, glue, and scissors...bliss!

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Fun with Fabric Paper!

I love fabric paper! I recently ordered some of the Dear Lizzie line from American Crafts, and had so much fun creating these two layouts! The fabric paper is adhesive backed, which makes it really simple to use. The texture is amazing! I followed along with this video tutorial to make the rolled ribbon roses. I'm excited to announce that I'll be teaching a class featuring these layouts at my LSS, Schmitt Photo, on Saturday, May 22nd at 10 am, and Wednesday, May 26th at 10 am! Just give the store a call at (812) 473-0245 to sign up for the class. Hope to see you there!

Monday, May 10, 2010

Thanks Graphics Fairy!

If you love vintage images, you need to flit on over to the Graphics Fairy website! I completely redesigned my blog today, using her FREE background and header images! The lovely and generous owner of the site, Karen, uploads new vintage clip art everyday. There are literally thousands of images to choose from, along with lots of great tutorials and crafty projects. The charming bird card above is just one of the many gorgeous pictures available!

I'm a bit obsessed with birds, eggs, and nests right now, so I fell in love with these candy colored beauties! Thanks Graphics Fairy!