Saturday, July 06, 2013

Altered books pages

One of the worksops I do is Altered Books and here are a few sample pages.  Techniques include stitching pages together, or just stitching on them, sticking lace etc on a page and painting over the whole thing, punching shapes out along the edges . . .
. . . sticking in bits of stitched stuff and printing and overpainting . . .
. . . windows, and something interesting to see in them . . .
. . . a series of graded holes, colour grouping . . .
. . . any other bits and pieces which give something interesting to look at.
Keep an illustration already in the book and add colour and more drawing, also 'ransom note lettering' cut from magazines etc.
Stick pictures in from magazines, brochures etc and extend the illustration by drawing some of your own.

A herb collection, stuck in or drawn . . .

Texture- masking tape, torn paper bits, stuck then painted over.  The paunt is taken up differently by the fifferent surfaces.
Tissue over string, sticky bits . . .
. . . painted strips of crumpled paper with a matt side and a plasticy side . . . again, different paint take-up.
Lace etc stuck ready to paint over.
Fancy lettering, a cut frame, piece of embroidery on paper stuck behind frame.  Some pen work needs adding here, patterns (doodling?), or some printing in the background or . . . ?

I rather like stitching on paper, and mostly poke holes first if it is more than one layer of paper.
Colour gradation is fun too, and these zigzag bits will be partly stitched together and decorated in some way, eventually.
If you want to cover the print more then more paint needs adding, or gesso, enough to hide it.  I quite like the textural effect of leaving it at least partly visible.

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Quiet day at local 12th century church . . .

. . . spent mostly in the sun and shade of trees in the graveyard and adjoining field feeling amazed at the variety of colour size, shape, detail of flowers, leaves, grasses and lichen! And interesting reflections in the stream with the blade shaped green leaves pointing up from the water and the black silhouettes of them pointing down.
 Masses of plants crammed onto the edges of the stream, varieties of grasses . . .
 . . .sunny reflections as well as the dark ones . .
 . . . and strange rosettes of lichen in greys and yellows.
 How many different colours are there in this tomb wall?

 Bright buttercups and tiny daisy shapes . . .
 . . .grass,
 speedwell, tiny, almost lost, but such a brilliant blue.
 And spiky teazles. . .

 . . . pointy leaves . . .
. . . even more spectacular lichen rosettes on an ancient tombstone. . . 

 . . .and this I have to look up, I don't think it is cow parsley,.
and a cross to remind me what I'm here for.

Friday, May 31, 2013

Tulips and eco-books

The sun is out, look how the tulips have opened up, lovely patterns of black and yellow inside.
Red ones and streaky red/yellow ones - these two pics are of established tulips . . . .

. . . now here come the new ones, lovely colours

. . . plus a crazy one . . .

. . . and multi-petalled ones . . .
. . . and a fringed one (never seen one of these before).

And the eco-books, so-called because they are made with a cereal packet card cover, and paper that I was going to chuck out (it's old, I don't want so much, I'll never use it all), and the stitched cover into which the book is inserted is made by free machining scraps of fabric onto a wadding-type backing, plus a lining.

When the book is full, with shopping lists, things to remember, things to do, inspiring thought for the day etc etc a fresh one can be made, with more cereal packet and chuckout paper, and inserted into the stitched cover!

If you fancy one of these and are going to the Festival of Quilts in August in Birmingham (see Twisted Thread website), go to the Tombola stand, run this year by the Contemporary Quilt group (special interest group within the Quilters' Guild)  and stocked with book covers and bookwraps, and try to win one.  Good luck!

Monday, May 20, 2013

Feeling nervous . . .

. . . about trying to do things with this new layout. The answer is, have a go.  So, first, the inevitable books . . .
 . . . the most important things in the world at the moment, I am told by the grandchildren, are BOOTS.
 And the West Country Embroiderers in April, with Karen Head, was making a piece of felt with threads and bits decorating it, the secret of how to stop them falling off!  I couldn't stay all day, because of the boot wearers visiting, so went back lunchtime and made a bit with them (and forgot to take a photo!)
 Later I made another at home with a bit more stuff on it.
 Closeups of the two pieces, showing the threads better.

 A day out took us to West Bay and the famous Broadchurch cliff (did you see the crime serial on tv?)
 I love the pebbles, tiny little ones at this end of Chesil Beach.
 Lastly, the first four Contemporary Quilt Group journal quilts.  This year we have to have picked a theme and must stick with it for the year.  Mine is patterns from world alphabets.  First I introduce myself, using letters from the Touareg  orthography plus printed 'translation'.
 Then a rotation of a Gujurat letter
 Then repeats of a Tamil letter
 And a Tibetan rotation on indigo dyed fabric.
The letters are cut out of printed and painted sheets from an old CQ newsletter and are handstitched in place on background fabrics suited to the origin of each letter.
Phew.  Now let's see if it publishes properly.