Thursday, August 31, 2006

Perfume From Provence

Perfume From Provence 6,7
Originally uploaded by Jan and Roly.
I have rebound a 1937 copy of 'Perfume from Provence' by the Honorable Lady Fortescue, illustrated by EH Shephard ('Winnie-the-Pooh' fame) into a sketchbook to take with me on my trip late Sept. I included some of the original pages when I rebound it with hot and cold pressed Arches and Waterford watercolour papers and Stonehenge paper.

This will be my Provence Sketchbook. Check out my Flickr site for more images of this book including the cover and title pages.

I find I am really enjoying all this rebinding of books. I've made handbound books before and really enjoyed it, but I always found I was confounded when it came to the covers. I often felt the cover wasn't quite right for the book in some way, or I felt compelled to put too much work into the cover which somehow added psycological 'weight' to the book I'd rather not had.

Rebinding has solved all that for me. I choose a book I like and whose title or subject suits and away I go. Somehow it feels even more personal than my painted covers. It creates an feeling of attachment that I love.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

In search of the "Perfect" Journal

I've been looking for the perfect book to take on a trip to Europe. Of course I want paper that will let me use ink, watercolour, gouache, and take collage. I don’t want heavy covers, too many pages, spiral binding or too big. I want it be functional AND gorgeous.

Not finding exactly what I wanted, I decided to make some myself by 're-purposing' old books.

I collected books of suitable condition, size and subject including a 1969 French language Guide France, a 1947 edition of Perfume from Provence by Lady Fortescue which has illustrations by E.H. Sheppard (of Winnie the Pooh fame) and As for Italy because I liked the title and it’s size. I also want a book to experiment in before I go, so I’m using my strangest find The Function of Voluntary Muscles which I chose because of the illustrations showing how to move your arms and legs!

To transform them I started by cutting the book block from the cover with a craft knife, then separating the signatures buy cutting the threads between them and picking away the old glue and cloth. (A signature is a folded book section.) The final act of destruction was to separate the pages.

I cut slots in the back cover and attached a Moleskine-like elastic closer.

New pages were cut from both Arches and Waterford hot and cold press watercolour papers and Stonehenge paper and combined with some original pages to form the 5 signatures. For Guide France I cut the endpapers from an old atlas.

I re-used the original hole positions and sewed the signatures together with linen thread, forming the new book block, lastly gluing the endpapers on. To make the spine strong I painted its edge with glue, added a strip of muslin cloth, and left it to press under a weight. I then glued the new book block back into the original cover by the endpapers, pressing it for a couple of days while the glue dried and hardened. Finally I added a velum pocket inside the back cover.

All ready for my trip and a bit of practice before I go!

**For more images and annotated images - see my flickr site**
(Having Blogger trouble and can't get them on here!@#%*)

This post and the others like it have been so popular that I now sell my books in my Etsy shop. I search out interesting titles, covers and illustrated books if possible and they make really quirky journals and sketchbooks. If you want to see what I mean check out my Flickr set. If you want to see what I did in my travel journals on Flickr here is Paris, Provence, and Italy.
11 Nov 2008

Friday, August 04, 2006

I'm Addicted!

I'm absolutely addicted to Cute Overload. Have you seen this?!?

EDM Challenges 2, 4, 13, 40 and 52 - all on one page!

Home sick today. Decided to go a grid of quick sketches. Actually did all of the above challenges on one page and while sitting in bed! Not a serious attempt. Just filling in the day.

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Breaking my Promise

You may recall (I hope you don't!) that I promised that my previous post about my recent exhibition, would be my final post on the subject. Well, I lied.
Click on this link to go to the 'run-down' by cartoonist Christophe Granet of the opening night and the exhibitions. Thanks Christophe!

Both exhibitions are still up in the Bunker Cartoon Gallery. I will be 'taking down' my work on Wednesday afternoon. If you are nearby and can manage to get in there between 10am and 4pm in the next two days, it would be great to have you visit. I'm not sure when Christophe's cartoons 'come down'. I think you will have until the end of August still to see them.

And, what is a post without visuals? So here for the delight of your eyes are photos I took while preparing for the exhibition. Putting 'D' rings on the back of canvases. Yes, I can do maths. Yes, I can measure. But being a highly visual person means that if I don't have to read and remember, I find it a lot easier and more pleasant a process. Enter the Moleskine! In the first photo, I used my Large Sketchbook. I could be sure that if I placed my Moleskine in exactly the same spot on the right hand side, that I would have my 'D' ring in the perfectly matching spot.

In the second photo I had a much smaller canvas, so... enter my 'original' sized Moleskine Sketchbook. Perfect mearsurements again!

I figured that with my two moleskines I have between them four different measurements which should just about cover any possible 'D' ring contingency!

Look what European city I belong in...

Some more blog fun found through Anastasia's interesting blog - a quiz to find where you belong in Europe.

You Belong in London

You belong in London, but you belong in many cities... Hong Kong, San Francisco, Sidney. You fit in almost anywhere.
And London is diverse and international enough to satisfy many of your tastes. From curry to Shakespeare, London (almost) has it all!

I'm not sure if I'm a little disappointed, but I don't know because I haven't yet been to London. I'll reserve judgement until I do. Might be waiting a while...