Monday, October 20, 2014

Art is Important...

I thought this book would be difficult to work in at first.  The theme "Why Art Is Important..." seemed so profound and difficult to express in visual form.  The spreads that came before me were deeply personal.  How would I tackle this theme?  As I thought about what I would do for this AB, I began to brainstorm the many things that art is or can be.   Through this exercise, it became clear to me that while art can sometimes be viewed in a negative light (controversial, offensive, provocative), ultimately art, in all its forms--allows us to grow in a multitude of ways including understanding, tolerance and community.  To illustrate this idea, I cut each of these thoughts about art into strips of paper shaped like blades of grass and filled the pages.  I must say that I really enjoyed spending time to reflect on the many ways art influences us.

Forgot to add that I was watching Kevin Costner in "Field of Dreams" as I cut out my blades of grass.  Coincidence?  I think not...

Single Staple Collage Chunkies

This chunky theme turned out to be more of a challenge than I imagined!  I have amassed quite a bit of ephemera from my travels to Italy (Bellagio, Venice, Florence and Rome).  I wanted to find a way to use them in these chunky pages.  With a single staple, however, composition proved to be difficult.  Think about it--each piece of ephemera had to be placed in such a way that one staple would have to pass through it to secure all pieces to the page.  If I wanted something to appear on the right side of the page but my staple was on the left side, I had to make sure I didn't trim that particular piece too short.  As an added challenge, I decorated both sides of my chunkies!

 The top photo shows the front sides and the bottom photo shows the back sides of my pages.  As painful as this challenge first was, I ended up really enjoying the process.  You can see how I created layers of images.  Some pieces fold out to reveal more hidden surprises.  As I glance over each of these pages, they bring back wonderful memories of beautiful Italy!

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Heroes and Villains

My villain of choice for this month's "Heroes & Villains" themed book was none other than Cruella De Vil.  She was one of the most memorable villainesses from my childhood.  I remember her as such an imposing figure--even amidst all 101 Dalmatians.  I just had to create a pop-up of Cruella for this spread.

This was a rather large book to work in and the pages had a glossy texture. I began by gessoing the pages and then added the black dalmatian spots to complete my background.  After selecting the image of Cruella that I wanted to feature, I created a simple v-fold and attached it to the base of my image.  I positioned her over the book's gutter and made sure she fit inside the book when it closed.

The rest of the spread is decorated with images of dalmatians cut out from books and mounted onto cardstock for added body.  I used foam adhesive for the dalmatian images to create a 3-D effect.  What a fun spread to make!

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Mind Games

As I pondered (agonized) over what to do in Hope's "Mind Games" book this month, I found myself drawn to the cryptic symbols and hidden messages Dan Brown wrote about in his book "The Da Vinci Code."  I am fascinated by the look of these ancient symbols and even more mystified by what they all mean.

My spread consists of a sample of mirror-image writing (left page background) as Da Vinci was known to write in this manner.  Alchemy symbols appear on the background of the right page.  I covered both pages with brown tissue to give it an aged, parchment paper kind of look.

The overlays are images printed on vellum and secured with eyelets and brads.  I used Da Vinci's Vitruvian Man on the left and embellished it with a little string art.  The hand image on the right is one of my favorites.  I embellished it with odds and ends I had in my stash.  

Finally, the text is stamped onto deli paper and adhered with matte medium.