Chapter Next: Mirage


Some the pages in my altered book are already conveniently titled. The book began as an orphaned volume of short stories, and some of the tales’ titles just appealed too much to cover up.

IMG_4154

Doesn’t Mirage just conjure such magic?

I haven’t embarked on any of these pages with a plan. Planning just isn’t in my spirit. I didn’t get that gene.

So to begin I just do something, and let that define where it wanders next. The first something that happened on this page took the form of sprinkles of Brusho swept about in circles with a wet brush. IMG_41541

Oh my how I love how these dusty crystals explode with colour. This stuff is the definition of less is more. More than a wee bit makes for a super rich gravy of an ink, which is gorgeous, but when you use an imperceptibly itsy amount each tiny trace of this magic erupts into zingy pigment on contact with moisture.

It is more than gorgeous. It is actual magic.

IMG_41542

Another early layer was gesso scraped through a stencil, then extra messy gesso scraped haphazardly. If you’re a fellow scraper of gesso you’ll recognise those characteristic windshield wiper patterns of clearing excess off the scraper ๐Ÿ˜‰

IMG_41543

In the years preceding this project I accumulated a shed load of design magazines, rich full of the most gorgeous graphics and illustration.  Just lately I embarked on transforming the knee high heap into 4 boxes of delicious collage ingredients, and a small mountain of recycling.

Thing is, I don’t know who this half a face belonged to, and as an artist I’d like to credit the creator. Any reference to the inventor got lost in the snippings. If it was you – thank you  and I hope that you like the new other half I made. In the spirit of self-portraiture I’ve mismatched the eyes for a familiar wonkiness!

IMG_41544

Hope you’ve enjoyed this little trip through the putting together stages. Here’s how the page developed as a whole………

Chapter Next: Unity & Variety


I’m having so much fun with this altered book.

As it develops more meanings are attaching themselves. For instance, it hunity-variety01as 42 pages, and as we all know 42 is the meaning of life, the universe and everything. So suddenly it has a theme attached… it’s a book with elements of life, the universe and everything. Reckon those are parameters I can keep within!

Plus I’ve brought in elements of Somerset Maugham’s writing. Seemed only fair as I’d already obliterated so many of his words in paint and collage and whatnots.

This page is titled from his quote:

“The Essence of the Beautiful is Unity and Variety.”

unity-variety13

Here is how the page developed …………..

Newest Obsession: Chapter One


Since way back in the earliest days of exploring mixed media online, through the vast and wondrous wealth of blogs, the treasures and techniques that ppl share on YouTube, I’ve often come across folks doing this thing called altered books.

I’m going to lay it on the line here: it’s made me think Huh?

Sure there are some glorious creations, some splendid transformations, some real delights.

But it hasn’t ever struck me as a thing I’d find myself doing. (Although I watched a good few YouTube things on how it’s done. I gleaned information, and unbeknown to me, my brain squirreled it away.)  Okay, so, fast forward to a couple of weeks ago.

IMG_4444The strangest thing: I must have reached one of those tipping points, inspiration had hit critical mass and I had to begin this new project. There was a sense of driven urgency that was singing in my head:

Find me a knackered book, I am compelled to bring it new life!!

One of my rescue books – too shabby to donate and yet somehow too good for the recycling bin – I’d maybe thought I’d read it some day, but I’ve got to be a realist just sometimes. I love books, I have many, but the pile waiting to be read is growing faster than the rate I consume them.

So the lonely third volume of Somerset Maugham’s short stories was about to be re-purposed into my newest obsession full of colour and faces and meanings.

I’ll show you how it’s coming on over the next while.

Meanwhile here’s a little peak ….