Monday, April 14, 2008

Art With a Book

Even with my excruciatingly busy schedule, I am able to find small tidbits of time to let my creativity out. My most recent endeavor has been constructing an "altered book." Making altered books is a way to recycle old books that nobody reads into a work of art that is pleasing to the eyes and fun to touch and hold. It can include elements of collage, painting, photography, poetry, journaling, stamping, sewing, or whatever else that can fit inside the covers of a book! And even if it doesn't fit, you can always cut out a secret compartment in the pages of the book and put something special in it. It can be whatever you want it to be.

I've always been interested in scrapbooking and painting and photography, but I usually don't have a special project to work on. I don't often remember to take pictures on my travels, and I'm always afraid that I'll "mess things up," if I try making a scrapbook.

When I first learned about altered books, I was skeptical. (I mean, what kind of person would cut and paint and decoupage in a PERFECTLY FINE BOOK?! Scandalous!) But then I saw some pictures of altered books and it immediately captured my attention. Here are some examples of altered books: (I didn't make any of these)

Isn't that cool?
Anyway, it inspired me to make my own altered book. I began searching for a suitable  book to use. I wanted an old, thick, mysterious book that was dirt cheap or free. I finally found what I was looking for at a homeschool book sale. In a box marked "Free Books- Take One" I found a single discarded volume from a world history set that was published in 1906. Perfect!

I took it home and made my crafty plans. I have ideas for a travel spread, a winter spread, an enchanted forest spread, and perhaps some other pages, but with altered books it is better to only make a few pages, because if you make too many, it won't be closeable.

So far I have painted the cover and made the title page, which reads:
"Destinations & Discoveries: The Observations and Dreams of a Curious Mind." It's nothing fancy yet, but the beauty of making altered books is that you can always add to it later. When I get a chance, I'll post some pictures of my work-in-progress. 


DTH Rocket said...

I like it! Be sure to post some pictures of yours once you have some pages done!

Dutchess said...

Amazing I would stumble on your blog! My sister and I just discovered the world of altered books this last month. I am still in the planning stages, but have the same sort of book in mind as you! I went through my boxes of old craft supplies (I was a pack rat when I was little!) and found scads of cool things I can glue in on! I also stayed up all night the other day looking at pictures of finished books, they are so fascinating!

And by the way, I think living in a treehouse is a fabulous idea!!

cj said...

Thats great, I can't wait to see them.

Anonymous said...

It's a great idea... That could even become a piece of art to frame for just the right place in the house. Original work is always interesting.

I agree with DTH -- I would like to see pictures of your pages when you create a few.

Evergreena said...

Thanks for your encouraging comments! I'll be sure to post some pictures.