Reading Nature

I began to think about what else I could make for the project, and how I could work further with combining text and image. I sat down and looked through all of the paper I had made and paid close attention to the smaller squares which housed individual flowers. I had pressed these into the paper pulp once it had been pulled out and set to dry. I wondered what I could do with them and how I could make this into something special, and then I remembered about the Book binding workshop that I attended with Tom Martin.

I wasn’t sure how much I wanted to work with text here, but I knew that I wanted to combine my letter-press work along with the paper making. Originally I wanted to return to the letter press studio and create some more work, but like I have alright mentioned I fell quite ill. So I decided to begin to work with what I have already got and have already learnt.

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These are the 6 pieces of paper that I had made along one of the red-text letter press prints. I wanted to combine these two and make them into a book, using the print on the thicker paper, rather than the tracing paper, as the front cover. Saying that, the tracing paper offers a delicacy that I am drawn too. When I am looking through a book that has tracing paper between the pages, this changes the way I treat and handle the book, as to me it makes it feel much more special and precious, dainty and valuable. This is something that I wanted to achieve in my own work.

– – – Making the Book – – –

I enjoyed the making of the book, it was nice to get some more practical things done (it can be a pain staring at a laptop screen blogging for so long!!) Luckily I had all of the equipment I needed with me so it didn’t take me long to get into the swing of making it. As the paper is hand-made the edges are rough, and I like this aspect, however with the side of the book that I was to bind on I decided to neaten the edges so that the pages were able to line up properly. Like I said before, I liked the way thin paper in between each page adds a new dimension to the work, so I found some delicate white paper from under my desk and decided to iron out some of the creases (they were a little unbearable) I then measured them to fit the paper and cut out 6 square pieces. I also then took one of my letterpress prints and meassured that to fit as the front cover; I measured it around half a cm larger than the rest of the inside papers so that it covers it and fits better. For the back cover I used one of the brown pieces of handmade paper. I measured 3 holes on the side and then used the simple binding technique, with some blue/grey thread. I am very happy with the turn out, here it is:

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I really enjoyed this piece, I do much prefer making things rather than sticking to 2D work, I just have to make the leap. Something that really interested me about the outcome of this, is that when you’re looking through any ordinary book, you look at page by page. So obviously on the back of the pieces of paper with the flowers one, you would expect to see something however I kept this clear. This is because if you look, the weight of the flower have been embossed and stands out on the other side of the paper and looks just as beautiful as the front. You get to see shape and feel texture and makes you look at the flower or leave in a new light.

I am keen to get another piece of work done for this project, I would like to make some more paper with seeds inside so that I can plant it in the ground so things could grow there. I really like the idea of making the paper, folding them into lots of paper birds, different sizes, and hanging them from trees along the same trail I used for my first piece. Then as the weather changes and things happen, the birds would wear our, they would fall from the branches of the trees and finally hit the ground, where they would initially die and disintegrate, but alas NO, because seeds will be planted thus life will grow. I just hope I have to to get this done!


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