North Redwoods Book Arts Guild

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Saturday, January 30, 2010

February Workshop--Stamps and Stencils

Sandy V. will be teaching our workshop on Saturday, February 13. If you plan to attend, you must RSVP Sandy by Wed, February 10th so she has enough time to prepare materials (her contact details are in the newsletter or in the membership directory). We will be using Art Foam to make quick and easy stamps and freezer paper and other materials to cut stencils. We will then use our stamps and stencils to enhance previously decorated papers or a variety of new papers. Finally we will share our creations.

What to bring:

Scissors , craft knife and cutting mat.

Ink pads and/or acrylic paint and brush.

Spray bottle and paper towels.

Cardboard to use as a base for stamps.

Papers to stamp and stencil: bring paste papers and gelatin prints that need more decoration.

White or colored papers...try a variety.

Sandy will bring Art Foam, freezer paper and other materials for stencils, stipple brushes, paper samples and whatever she can think of that might be fun to use.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Over Fifty and Love Books?

Humboldt State University's Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI) provides fun and stimulating classes for people fifty years or older. The instructors are wonderful, topics cover a wide range of interests, and there are no quizzes or tests. This blog editor took an OLLI course from Marcy Berstiner, Professor of Journalism at HSU, and learned how to create and maintain this blog.

There is a course offering of interest to book art enthusiasts titled, The History of the Book, taught by Scott Brown, owner of Eureka Books. Scott specializes in antiquarian books and maps and has also provided the venue as well as a lot of support for NORBAG's book exhibition during Arts Alive in Eureka. The course will be held the four Wednesday evenings in April, from 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm and the cost is $60 (members) or $75 (non-members).

Woodblock, 1568 Printing Press, Wikipedia.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

More Homework Completed

Another workshop participant, Bonnie J., has completed her accordion fold book. She has added a colorful ribbon to tie the book closed. The cover image is a negative print of string or twine. If you could hold this book in your hand the first thing you would notice is the smooth almost silky texture of the image. Bonnie did a good job of inking her brayer, being careful to roll out a thin layer on her rolling surface before applying the ink to the gelatin plate. As a result the thin layer of ink that was transferred to the paper still produced remarkable detail with a surface that seems to be part of the paper.

The images on the front of the folds are a good example of the pleasing use of a limited color palette. Bonnie has chosen to glue the entire image to the page, writing notes below the images as reminders of what processes she used to create these interesting images.

There are a number of things that are pleasing about this image. She has used a very small gelatin plate (about 2.5 b 3.5 inches) and because the top of the plate had sharp edges—the bottom edges are rounded—she gets a nice sharp border that helps to define the image. The little irregularities make it more interesting. Look carefully and you can see her notes at the bottom.
Thank you Bonnie!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Gelatin Print Book

The three hour workshop on gelatin plate printing didn't leave us with much time to complete the accordion fold books and so it was a treat to have a member bring over her completed book. Sue C. did her homework and the results are terrific. Each image is glued only at the top margin making it possible to lift the print and read its description underneath.

The printed pages were handed out at the workshop with the idea that they could be cut to size and incorporated into the book. The printed pages provide a title, a list of techniques to be used in the workshop, details on caring and disposal of the gelatin plate, and a list of additional resources.

This duo is a negative and positive print of cilantro printed on pink paper. Sue also cut pink paper for the front and back of the accordion fold book and added a delicate ribbon to tie when the book is closed. 
Are there any others out there to share?

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Gelatin Printmaking Day

Book artists were "ready to roll" as they assembled their brayers, inks, papers, lace, leaves, stamps, string, plastic wrap, bubble wrap, embossed wallpaper, stencils, strips of paper, embossed paper towels, corrugated cardboard, and bits of nylon mesh. After everyone set up their workspace there was a presentation of the finer details of rolling ink onto the brayer. Use of the color wheel was demonstrated and then people were ready to create backgrounds using only motions of the brayer or by subtracting ink from the plate with the use of bubble or plastic wrap. That done we moved on to negative prints (inking the plate, placing a leaf on the place, and then printing) as well as positive prints (not re-inking, removing the leaf, and then printing). The gelatin plate is particularly good at producing positive prints, revealing detail that seems three dimensional. Ghost images (a second printing without re-inking) were also discussed.

The four prints on the left are negative prints (a term picked up from drawing classes) and the fern on the right is a positive print resulting from printing after the fern was picked up from the plate. The print in the middle of the bottom row is translucent because it was printed on parchment paper.

This print is only about 2.5 by 3.5 inches but the detail is remarkable. The background pattern was formed using an embossed paper towel. This is a positive print. Clicking on any of these images will produce a larger image and this one is worth a closer look!
One of the advantages of working with a large, enthusiastic group of people is that we learn more than working alone. There were problems with the some of the black and dark blue inks; the gelatin plate didn't accept the ink as well as other colors. It was also important that there be a thin layer of ink on the brayer, mixing inks is best when done on a palette rather than using the brayer rolling surface, and it pays to sit by someone who has complementary colors!

To see these images and more, please use the following link. Once the Picasa window you have the following options: 
  • click on the first image to see a larger image, using the arrows at the top to view the rest of the photos. There is also an option for "full screen".
  • choose to view a slideshow of images.


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