- I have a basic love of anything early to mid 20th century design,
- I love the challenge of finding vintage items,
- I love giving vintage items new life in unique yet practical, functional ways
Both in multi-media artwork and in creating functional housewares, this approach fuels me. So, in a HUGE nutshell, this is how I see myself approaching upcycling.
Enter the latest project I have been excited to share. My newest, latest art journal. It is a honker. When the clunker arrived on my doorstep last month I all, ah crap, the phone book arrived. Time to peel the plastic off of last years and throw it in the recycle bin so I can jam the new one in its place on that prime real-estate shelf located in the hall closet. Not this year, my friends, not this year. I grabbed that bad boy (with both hands cause I am weak and clumsy and did not want to risk dropping it on my toe) and upstairs to the studio we went.
I covered the front, spine and backs covers with some podge and some thick patterned paper I had been saving, so it looks just like a huge book now. I am in love! Specifically? The thin newsprint pages are perfect for gessoing on both sides; that thickens them up enough so they dont rip so easily, and still remain fairly thin when the book is closed. Their thin weight is also perfect for layering papers on, watercolour paper and pages from old books are perfect for adding weight to a page too. If a page does rip, I tape it up or rip it out. There are 700+ or more to go through. The end is not the point, just having a space that you can only improve by adding your own free fun and play is the entire point of using this thing. Not like a leather bound journal. Those things make my heart pound some days. Some days I need to be creative free to expectation, free of squeeky clean white paper.
Here is what I speak of. My new art journal. So far I have the inside cover pages started, and 6 more pages in progress as well.
I dont really start one page, finish it and move on. No no no. That would make too much sense. I need to digest and work through each page. I treat them with the same intensity as anything else I create, be it a piece of furniture or a painting.
Most of my ideas start in a sketchbook, but art journals allow me to create with abandon. I like to start without an idea of what will come out. I make a mark, gesso a page, paste on a weird shape, start a pattern or all of the above, and then wait. I then gesso the next page, and do the same thing. When that page has dried, I flip back and look at the first and second pages. I make a mark on the newly dried third and fourth pages, paint a background, pick a colour or a pen I havent used in a while and just see what happens when it meets the paper. Then I go back to 1 & 2, and add papers, block out text and add in pencil drawings that I fill in with acrylic, or pastel. Add more details, wait to dry, flip back to 3 & 4. Gesso pages 5 & 6. Wait to dry, flip back to 1 & 2, add in marker details, add text. Finish. Move to 5 & 6, make first marks, paste on papers, go back to 3 & 4 etc, etc, etc, until the entire book is through. (note: none of these pages are actually done yet!)
Some basic supplies for journaling include:
Adhesives: you can use tape, glue stick, spray adhesives or podge (my personal favorite) to apply pages, papers and accents to your journal. Mod-Podge, available at Michaels and art supply stores, protects the surface, but does leave a tackiness on paper at times, depending on the type you get and the thickness applied;
So what do you think of upcycling? Are you inspired? Any fun journal ideas to share? Questions?
Lemme know :)
& Enjoy! ♥ leel