I alter books and turn them into art journals. Sometimes I honor people who I love on the pages. Sometimes I just honor me and where I am at that very moment through words and art.
Recently I shared this creative process with a gifted high school art class.
They were so open and ready to jump into this concept.
I love that age. Everything is right on the surface. All the emotions. The talent. The angst. The love.
I brought along little bags of inspiration for each student.
Each bag was filled with bits and pieces of fabric, buttons, glass, colored string, watch parts, music sheets, old stamps, etc...
I searched flea markets and my own packed studio. I went into clock shops and explained what I was using the pieces for and said "please".
Isn't the assortment below magical?
I explained when and why I altered my first book. And why I love it so. I showed what I use and I did a demo. Then I handed over the little bags of magic.
And I stood back and watched their own magic unfold. And it unfolded quickly.
We started with the covers. Below a metal trinket and paper begin a transformation.
Playing with paper is part of the process. Each cut leads to another idea.
A window latch becomes a clasp to open and close this book. Look closely. The paint on the latch blends in with the crinkled paper on the cover. This cover has so much texture.
A saved metal medallion is embedded. Nearby, a fragrant oil waits to be added to the pages.
So much is honored. Childhood. Parents. Grandparents. Friendships. I love hearing each story and then watching it emerge on the cover and pages.
It is impossible to be near these artful souls and not be inspired. The teacher is always taught.
Their art teacher invited me to come do this class. Along with all the precise and detailed studies they do in their AP art class (amazing), she wanted to share with them another artistic way to unwind and release. A way to heal through art using an existing book.
She invited me to dance through her class like a muse. I am so grateful to her for sharing her students with me.
I go back again next month. I am putting together another round of inspiration bags filled with cut pieces of vintage paper in all different shapes.
Shouldn't everybody have a little bag of inspiration?
ps. Next time I will bring my good camera and take lots of pictures and share every bit of their brilliance. Promise. xo.