Wandering Wednesday #8: Altered books

altered book cover

Image by Bellah via Flickr

While browsing the internet at office one day about 7 years ago, I came across some fantastic altered book artists. A little research and digging around on what altered books are and how to create them threw up one interesting statement for me — when it comes to making altered books, there are no rules! At that time, I didn’t consider myself to be creative…I had repressed those instincts deep inside. But as I went through some altered artists’ websites and read about altered books and how to make them, I was in love!

       

 

– Altered art page from Life 101 by Modern Gypsy. See more pages on Shutterbug.

An altered book is a form of mixed media artwork that changes a book from its original form into a different form, altering its appearance and/or meaning. They may be as simple as adding a drawing or text to a page, or as complex as creating an intricate book sculpture. –  Wikipedia.com 

Sounds interesting? Then why don’t you try making your very own altered art in just 60 minutes!

As you learn more altered book techniques, or how-tos for any other form of collage or paper arts, you might find it helpful to create a techniques book to list out the process and experiment with the technique.

If you need some inspiration for more altered projects, Ink Stain Roni has a fabulous theme list that is sure to get your creative juices flowing.

And if you’re like me, you’ll love the eye candy on these two artists’ websites:

You can also take a peek at some of my altered art book spreads on my photoblog, Shutterbug.

Hope you enjoyed this little altered book tour!

Do you do any paper arts or other art and craft projects?

(Click to read older Wandering Wednesday posts)

My favorite things…

The Sound of Music LP cover.

Image via Wikipedia

Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens…

I love that song from Sound of Music! Which is why I decided to name this latest series after that song. I got this idea from Misadventures with Andi, and thought it was an excellent way of keeping track of some of the things I love and sharing them with you!

I was contemplating if I should make this into another of my regular features, but then decided against it. I want this to be a totally fun post, without having to worry about missing out a day, so I’m going to post these whenever I have a few new things to share with all of you.

I was looking for the Now What? magazine this morning, which used to be published by Jessica Wesolek over at crea8it! While browsing through her site, I came across this lovely  luminara. It would look beautiful on my sidetable! The best part? You can make it yourself at home! Click to know how to make a luminara.

I don’t know about you, but I often find myself loathe to throw out wine bottles, hoping I can alter them in some way to use them as showpieces around the house. Don’t these painted, stamped and wired treasure bottles look absolutely divine?

Inspired by all this craftiness, I headed over to Karen’s Whimsy, my favorite altered book artist, to have a look at her beautiful relinquaries. For some reason, this particular relinquary has been one of my favorites since a while.

Well, that’s it for this time! Hope you enjoyed looking at these beauties as much as I did while putting them together!

Make your own rules

If you were in charge and could make any one rule, what would it be? There are a lot of rules I’d like to make, but the one rule that would be most important to me is…

Reduce the workweek to 4 days
If I could make the rules, this one would be on the top of my list. Slash down the workweek from 5 days to 4. We could increase the workday by an hour each day to offset the loss of a working day. But a 4-day work week would give us ample time to take care of the rest of our lives too, and would be a perfect way for employees to strike a work-life balance.

There are too many things that we are forced to put off due to work commitments, and not all of those can be addressed on the 2 days we have off. Imagine the possibilities that having 3 days to yourself would open up! I know there’s so much more I could achieve if I had 3 days to myself —- from the daily nitty-gritties that get piled up for the weekend; to giving more time and attention to my hobbies (photography and art journals); managing to get important official work get done, which a lot of times gets pushed and pushed unless there’s a fire…

 

So, if you could make your own rule, what would it be?

 

Random thoughts

We’re going to Dharamsala next week…can hardly wait! Our bookings are done at the Norling Guest House at Norlibungka Institue a little way away from McLeod Ganj. The place looks absolutely beautiful! Can’t wait to get there. I’m already thinking of looking up the cheaper options in McLeod Ganj, ’cause I have a feeling that I’d like to spend more time there…maybe at the monastery, or just hanging out…

Speaking of hanging out, Pushkar was a great place to hang out…roam around the market…chill out and just relax. Our visit there last year was one of the most relaxing trips we’d taken in recent times.

With the stress and humdrum of our everyday lives, it’s really important that we find something to do to unwind and relax — it could be listening to music, reading, working out, doing something creative, whatever works, really. Without a stress-buster, things can get really overwhelming.

Let your senses come alive!

It’s been a while since I put eye to lens and shot an image purposefully. So when I got some lily blooms as part of my birthday bouquet, I thought it was the perfect time to indulge in some photographic therapy!

The colors of the blooms, the perfection of each flower, each petal, each vein, made me want to create a “vision of perfection.” I hope this effort has been successful.

The perfection of nature can be seen in the perfection of a lily...


...the pollen tubes floating above the flower...


...form an elegant foreground to the perfection of the petal...


...the variagated veins of which stand out against its brilliant orange

This post has been inspired by the propmt at Creative Every Day.

Reading the cards

I’ve been fascinated with the occult and divination methods, such as palmistry, the I-ching, Runes, etc., since a really long time. I’m even doing an altered book that has a Book of Shadows theme. A couple of weekends back, while browsing through the bookstore, I came across a tarot deck that wasn’t too highly priced, which was rare, and on an impulse, I bought it. I soon realized that that particular deck was a mistake — the cards were simply not “talking” to me — but I found myself fascinated with the cards.

t-rideroriginSo, within a week, I was back at the bookstore, where I purchased the Rider-Waite tarot deck, the only one that’s readily available here, and a comprehensive book on the tarot.

Around that time, while exploring on the internet, I also came across this really greatwebsite called Learning the Tarot, where author Joan Bunning has a tarot course up for free. It’s an excellent site to read about and learn the tarot.

The tarot is made up of 78 cards — 22 Major Aracna cards and 56 Minor Aracna cards.
the_fool
Each of the Major Aracna cards corresponds to a significant life event, tracing the journey of an innocent adventurer (the Fool, card 0) as he evolves into one that has the world at his feet (the World, card XXI). Each card symbolizes an archetype, a classic role that we or others take on.

I especially loved Joan Bunning’s The Fool’s Journey. Not only does it help you to understand the cards in the Major Aracna, it also holds true about the way we go through life — our cycles of learning…falling, rising, learning…

It’s been fascinating learning about the cards, and some of my daily readings have resonated really well during my day. I didn’t have time to do one for today…but I might just draw a card at night to introspect and reflect on the day gone by.

Creatively inclined

In an endeavour to make office fun (yeah, right!) our firm decided to launch hobby clubs, and the one and only club launched thus far is the photography club. I’m a total shutterbug, but a complete amateur, so I decided to sign up! And of course, given my crazy work schedule, I didn’t attend a single meeting. It took an email by the group head to “force” me to make it for the meeting, and boy! Was I glad I went!! There are a bunch of really talented people in that grup, which honsetly had me wondering what I was doing there! I mean, I may click away with abandon, but that doesn’t necessarily make me even half-way decent!

Anyhoo! Take the plunge I did, and clicked away during the weekend, on the theme that had been decided for the week — table top or still life photpgraphy (which my husband insists on calling industrial photography!). Here are my very humble attempts, and may I add that this is the first time I have ever done this, ever? OK, just so we set the record straight!