this one about case binding from SeaLemonDIY on YouTube as well as her tutorial on how to make book cloth. She has a few other tutorials that I liked and I made some simple book presses out of wooden cutting boards that I had on hand, plus a smaller one from some scrap wood to press the signatures (the little booklets of paper) while I glued the spine. I watched a few different tutorials on how to stitch signatures together using thread, and then I made this book (it's ~3"x5").
Overall the first one turned out well, except the spine of the paper block (the stack of signatures) is not attached to the spine of the book cover. I fixed that in the second one, which turned out (technically speaking) much better than the first. For the second one, I decided to make my own book cloth, because my head was filled with ideas of the things I could use for the cover. I took a piece of fabric from my stash and followed the SeaLemon DIY tutorial on making book cloth (referenced above). I also got a few hints from LizzieMade's tutorial on making book cloth using the heat bonding method. I got some Pellon Wonder Under and ironed a piece of it to the fabric. Then, because I did not have any Yasutomo Kozo rice paper on hand, I ironed a piece of tracing paper to the Wonder Under. Rest assured, I will acquire some Yasutomo Kozo rice paper at my earliest convenience. The book cloth was a little thick when I was mitering the corners on the inside of the book, likely due to the relative thickness of the tracing paper.
Also, I have a new favorite tree (in addition to aspens). It's an oriental cherry tree (Japan - rose family). The blossoms are lovely and so soft.
The Limehouse, and Thames Police, and the detail was remarkable. These linked images simply do not begin to convey the amount of detail in the originals. He used various marks (such as hash marks) to convey textures for roofs and boats, for example. The figures and forms and objects and all that was conveyed using such tiny little lines (much smaller than the width of a human hair) encouraged me to be more dedicated to patience and diligence in my artwork.
Happy Art Making!
Wednesday, May 1, 2013
Sunday, March 17, 2013
For the first batch (of the three) I used week-old size and didn't have much success. It looked like the paint was cracked all over, rather than covering the size smoothly. It's hard to see here, but this one was on a light blue Strathmore charcoal paper. It looks washed out to me, because it doesn't have the white paper as the background to make the colors stand out. I won't repeat using that colored paper anytime soon.
I did mess around with the paint at the bottom of the pan after that batch. Here are some non-alumed japanese fibrous papers that I pressed into the leftover paint scraps at the bottom of the tray after pouring off the size. Look how pretty this is:
Because of how the paint was 'cracking/feathering,' I didn't have much success combing the paint. Here is the size with paint dropped on it:
this one I saw on the internet, but instead I got this result:
On this one I only combed part of the surface, and didn't comb the left side. I like the dark purple rings around silver and pink paint with green. The colors in this one are wonderful:
Tuesday, March 12, 2013
This time I used several wonderful fibrousy Japanese papers (available at Utrecht Art Supply). The top photo includes: top left (orange): Masa White (the smooth side) w/alum; top right (orange): Masa White (the rough side) w/alum; bottom left (pink): Kitakata Natural w/alum; bottom right (pink): Okawara Natural w/ alum. Results/thoughts: I definitely prefer the smooth feel of the Masa white to the rough side (the paper has a rough side and a smooth side. I don't see much difference in how the paint bonded. Further experimentation is necessary. I love the thin lightweight feel of the Kitakata Natural. It also has a decidedly rough side vs. smooth side now that I'm looking at it but for this round I used the rough side. The paint does have a slightly rough feel to it. Next time I would try the smoother side. The paint on the Okawara also has a rough feel. Of all four of the above, the Masa White has the smoothest loveliest feel to it.
Here is one on sketch paper with alum. This is right after I pulled it and rinsed it so it's got a bit of shine to it which dried off after 20 minutes. I was really pleased with the color intensity. I used a bit of black this time.
Also, I used a bit of Liquitex Professional Acrylic Ink (quinacridone magenta) which is beautiful but smells awful (like a skunk) - fortunately the smell goes away after it dries. It is suspended in a liquid solution that must contain its own dispersant since it spread wonderfully without the addition of ox gall or airbrush medium. I also used some Daler Rowney FW Pearlescent Liquid Acrylic (Macaw Green) that I had on hand. It also spread wonderfully on its own and left such a beautiful pearlescent sheen on the paper after rinsing and drying. Both the liquid acrylics come in bottles with droppers which eliminate the need to use straws or separate droppers. I plan to acquire some orange pearlescent liquid acrylic at my earliest convenience.
Isn't this a beautiful photo of the size with paint on it? Look at that nice, clean clear size! It stayed much cleaner this time because I was putting on much smaller amounts of paint. The colors were much more vibrant because I did not dilute them with water. If anything, I diluted them directly with the ox gall or airbrush medium.
This was the first one I did in this round. I don't like the shapes or colors very much, but because I hesitated in several places when laying the paper on the size, I think I have the most basic understanding of how the Spanish style is done with what appear to be dark and light waves or lines.
I had fun with this. My favorites of course were the pinks and oranges at the top of this post for their bright lovely colors. I have several other papers to experiment with, including a medium blue Strathmore charcoal paper. And my size has been sitting in the refrigerator for several days now so I'll see how long it can last in there and still be useable!
Friday, March 8, 2013
I recently saw this post by Lynda at Bloom, Bake & Create on Marbling Fabric. I think her colors are just lovely. Of course I had to try it. I ordered some carrageenan, alum (aluminum sulfate) and ox gall. I was looking at information on alum and worried about possible deterioration (rotting) of the fabrics prepared with alum. That's a bit disturbing... I did find this article about use of alum in papermaking over the centuries, and limited proof that use of alum in marbleing has any significant negative effect on the paper over time. Not that I plan on the papers I make lasting for centuries. I suppose it's just the IDEA of it that's bothersome. Anyway, alum concerns aside, I pushed onward. I followed Lynda's instructions to make the carrageenan mix in a blender and let it sit overnight in the refrigerator. I added 1 tablespoon of powdered carrageenan to 4 cups warm distilled water and blended for two minutes, then poured it into the marbling tray (a rectangle plastic container) and put it in the refrigerator.
To prepare the mordant (alum) about an hour before marbling, I added 1/2 tablespoon of alum to 1 cup of warm water and stirred until dissolved. I used a sponge to wet the paper on one side with the alum/water solution, then allowed to dry and flattened under a tray in between some newsprint. I used less alum than the instructions said because I was worried about the rotting effects of the alum. Next time I'm just going to add the amount it called for. I think that affected the paint's ability to adhere to the paper.
I used a bunch of different kinds of paper, including a cheap mixed media paper from Michaels; printer paper; Arches 140lb hotpress; graph paper; basic blank newsprint; basic sketch paper; and another thicker paper (fine watercolor paper) like the Arches watercolor paper (but I don't remember the brand). I also put alum on some of the pages, 1/2 diluted amount on some other pages, and no alum on others, to see what would happen.
This is the first one I made. I don't like the shapes and there is a lot of white space (the paints did not spread completely) but the colors are the most dense of any of the papers. I did start diluting more and more throughout the process, to try and get the colors to spread more. This is Arches hotpress 140lb with alum.
Mixed media with alum:
Mixed media with alum (but prepared immediately before using, so the paper didn't have time to absorb the alum). Not sure what the white spots are from.
Here are a few more from the first batch. This one is just lovely, in my opinion. It's on mixed media with no alum. It's fairly obvious what the affect of no alum is to the paper - the paint doesn't bind well in the form of the lifted pattern. But look how pretty it is. So this is my nod to the idea that while there may be a 'right way' to do something if you want a certain effect, there really is no 'wrong way' to do something in art because you may enjoy the unexpected result of the 'wrong way' just as much!
Here is another one with the airbrush color. I like the colorful veins on this one but the blue color is still too dilute for my tastes. I need to find a way to make the color more intense. This one was also on newsprint.
Additional resources: Here are some examples of different marbled paper patterns from the University of Washington library. Some of them are gorgeous. I particularly like the vintage 19th century marbled papers in the Turkish pattern. Some even have lovely gold leaf overprinting.
The Golden Paints website has some good points about testing paints for spreading speed. The Daniel Smith website also has some good points and some photos. They sell carrageenan, alum and ox gall.
Lessons learned: Use more alum. Try papers with more exposed fiber (I got some Japanese papers to try). Don't use so much paint (most of it went to the bottom of the size). Put the marbling tray closer to the sink (minimize number of drips to clean up). Lay out more drying areas in advance (this became critical about halfway through and had me daydreaming for the next few days about my fantasy studio layout to include a wet-working area with a huge industrial sink and counters and hanging area to clip and dry works, plus huge windows that look out onto a beautiful garden...
Saturday, February 23, 2013
I used some of my papers from last week to collage the following small pieces of art. I also used some watercolor paint, black Pitt pen, Montana acrylic pens, and letter stamps with black ink pad.