Monday, March 10, 2008

Altered Atlas


Whoops no post for over a week.... well one reason is that I've been making things and they haven't all worked.

I'd hoped to be showing you some cards I've been making using plaincards specially prepared blanks. I bought these blanks last year when I was considering making a more portable version of my soul collage cards but eventually found the format so different from the 5x7 proportions that it was requiring major redesigns of too many cards to be practical. I'd bought the type of blanks that can be sprayed with clear sealent to produce glossy finished cards.

Last week I printed up all the remaining coatable blanks I had (with photos not collages) and after a little experimenting set up the shed for a big varnishing binge. Unfortunately, and I've really no idea how, instead of taking the clear varnish with me into the shed I took a can of 3M repositionable spray mount. I'd given all the cards a nice even coating when I realised that it wasn't smelling right...

Now I don't know what I ought to've done at this stage but what I did do was got hold of the clear acrylic spray and covered over the cards again. I waited an hour and did another coat and then another hour and another coat...

None of the cards has dried with a smooth finish. Some are still sticky!

None of them are useable as cards. None of them look in the least like decently printed photos.

For some reason this disaster has spurred me on to have another go at an altered book. Last year I vaguely joined in with ArtsyMama's weekly lessons on altering a book.


Last year I'd worked with a spiral bound plain book rather than a real book. This time I've got an atlas. (Only 50p from the charity shop and wonderfully big - much cheaper than the equivalent size drawing book.)

I remembered that one was meant to prep books and went looking for the instructions. Being the internet ArtsyMama's direct link to the tutorial no longer worked but it is currently to be found on Go Make Something - you need to register to read this site but its got enough on it to be worth that small investment of time and effort. The article on preparing a book for altering says its a good idea to take out every other page. And to ensure that the tabs left in are of different sizes. So that's approximately what I've done. Occasionally I ended up deciding to keep certain pages because I liked them - or cutting out pages because I liked them and wanted to use them elsewhere - but mostly I went through taking out every other page. So now I've an Incomplete Atlas of Great Britain to work on.

What's altered in your life?

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hheheee, apologise for giggling about your '3M repositionable spray mount episode'! I did similar once but not on such a grand scale and they went into the bin - unlike yours which have in turn turned into another art form or turned your mind towards one!

I'm thinking very hard about what's altered in my life and can't find anything ... a third of the front garden has been done!

Joy Eliz said...

Some day I'm going to make an altered book - and when I do I think I will use your idea of an Atlas. Actually I have an Atlas that is really out of date.
I think I'll try not to use any varnish or the sort.
Thanks for the 'heads up' ;)

Caroline said...

Anonymous - glad its not just me - I'd thought I was being so good in having experimented first to be sure I knew what I was doing... my bin will soon be full of these cards... as soon as I'm really sure they won't dry and I can't possibly use them for something!

A third of a front garden seems like quite a big alteration!

Joy Eliz - If your atlas has been stitched together it ought to be great to alter. And yes steer clear of varnish!

andrea said...

Two steps forward, one step back: that seems to be the way I learn new things, too. I think it's meant to be that way so that we learn properly and we never take anything for granted! Have you thought of using acrylic medium and a brush on the cards ratehr than spray?

Caroline said...

Andrea - if I ever buy any more of this type of card I'll experiment with brushing it on though I doubt it'll come out as lovely and smooth as a correctly used spray would... but then I do have a, not very obvious from this post, dislike of sprays... so any way of avoiding them ought to be considered!

tinker said...

Sometimes it seems as though nothing is being altered, although in reality, I know a number of things have...which now seems to me, to be rather like the spraying incident...
Your attitude towards that whole incident is really very inspiring - I don't know if I would have handled it all with as much equanamity as you! But I will try to remind myself of your example, next time something of that sort happens~xOx

Caroline said...

Tinker - thank you - I'm glad I happened to though I know its been a long time coming :-)