Structure: One page book / Snake Structure
Dimensions: 5 x 5 closed
Video of my process
It really feels like I'm so behind in everything this month. It's a month filled with great things happening, but it keeps me from being able to keep up with it all. So this book almost didn't happen. It got me thinking about what I might do if I missed a week. I think I'd be tremendously bummed and it might impact how I went forward. Luckily, that did not happen and so here I am with book 16.
Each week, I have to reorder my list of top five BIAD books. It seems like I like the books more and more as I create them. So, to date, my top five are:
- Book 4: Urbanite (accordion with pockets)
- Book 15: 15 (the blank art journal)
- Book 10: 20 Ways of Talking to Your Poem (Fan Book)
- Book 12: Game On (Domino Book)
- Book 16: Common Sense (Snake Book)
This week's book, Common Sense uses a great structure with unexpected twists and turns. I love this structure, but had never made it using a painted page. The Fabriano watercolor paper I used really adds a layer of quality that I love. It gives it a thickness that alleviates the need for hard covers on the book. I think all the layers of gesso and acrylic paint help with that as well.
The text for the book comes from a collaborative poem written by me, my husband, Damon, and my two nephews, Cameron and Treavor. We were eating a meal at some restaurant in Jacksonville, Florida during the summer of 2009 (actually I think it was in 2007 or 2008), and we decided to do an exquisite corpse poem (each person writes a stanza using the last line of the previous person's stanza). I was happy to come across the poem because it really does fit the background and color palette I used. I love it when that happens organically.
I needed this book to be easy and it was. It's one of the easiest structures I know how to make. The one page painted paper had some amazing textures and colors that really add to the narrative of the poem. I'm happy about that.
Two things I wish I had done differently with this book:
- The title -- Common Sense is okay, but I think if I had thought about it a little more, I might have called it Freedom Thinkers. That's a repeated phrase in the poem and I really like it.
- The text strips -- I used printed text strips for the poem and I'm okay with that, but I didn't really try to get them on straight or even and so some of them are a little wonky. Of course, this adds to the handmade quality of the book, but I can see it so clearly and it bugs me a little to know that I could have done a lot better with that part of it. But I'm also trying to embrace the imperfection in my art (that's the quote from book 12).
I'm looking forward to what this week brings. Stay tuned! If you're watching the videos, I'm honored! If you're making the books, I'm intrigued, so please share here or on the Giving Hands Creative Community site.