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Posts Tagged ‘moleskine sketchbook’

I wanted to add some bumpy texture to these pages using crepe paper and acrylic to create a texture that appeared to have some age. Thick blobs of blue acrylic paint were smeared on the pages and thin, white crepe paper was pressed into the paint. I bunched the paper to create thick wrinkles and set it aside to dry before adding additional layers of acrylic to shadow and highlight the texture. Silver was rubbed across the raised areas to create highlights after I rubbed black in the crevices to add some dimension. Overall, I am pretty pleased with the texture that resulted from this process and can see application working well on the kraft covers of a Moleskine Cahier or another cardboard type journal. The letter “S” was added  using a typeface with a spiral design and silver metallic pen to be compatible with the silver on the previous page.

The Letter S was Created with Metallic Marker and Lots of Background Texture.

The Letter "S" was Created with Metallic Marker and Lots of Background Texture.

Crepe Paper Pressed into Thick Acrylic Paint Created a Rich, Wrinkled Texture that was Ideal for Shadows and Highlights.

Crepe Paper Pressed into Thick Acrylic Paint Created a Rich, Wrinkled Texture that was Ideal for Shadows and Highlights.

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The upper case letter R has such a beautiful form. I like how the straight stilt-like strokes seem to balance the bulbous shape and it reminds me somewhat of a pregnant woman. I wanted to accentuate the rounded shape, so I cut out the right side of the letter, exposing the page below. I was surprised to find that the stem of the R created a working kickstand for the journal.

I used water pastels for color, and stroked the color with a square foam brush to give it a chunky texture. The brush was wet, but not drippy, so I was able to apply the water with minimal buckling of the paper. Adding the water in this manner gives a smooth, streaky appearance with more intense color near the edges of the brush. The rounded form on the R inspired me to create spirals as a background pattern on top of the soft color, which adds a bit of contrast to show off the letter better

By Using a Damp Foam Brush, I was Able to Add Water to the Watercolor Pastels with Minimal Buckling of the Moleskine Sketchbook Paper.

By Using a Damp Foam Brush, I was Able to Add Water to the Watercolor Pastels with Minimal Buckling of the Moleskine Sketchbook Paper.

The Stem of the Letter R Makes a Workable Kickstand in my Moleksine Sketchbook

The Stem of the Letter R Makes a Workable Kickstand in my Moleksine Sketchbook

Detail of the Metallic Spiral Background.

Detail of the Metallic Spiral Background.

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I was looking to do something more interesteing when I created these letters so I decided to cut into the paper in the sketchbook and create three interconnected letters. The letter “O”  on the right page was created from a cut out that is shared by the letter “P” on the reverse page. The illustration of “O” including lines with the silver circle in the center “O” is actually part of the letter “Q” that peeks through the cutout. I had to create all three letters at the same time to keep things lined up. First, I cut out the shape of a backwards “D” into the sketchbook paper on the right “O” page. This forms the outline/shape for most of the “O”, but the right side of the cutout was truncated to form the  stem on the “P” on the reverse. Concentric circles were drawn to reinforce the circular shape of the letter which borrows the center of it’s design from the underlying letter “Q”. Because of the graphic nature of the design, I used bright, flashy colors including red, black and metallic silver.

In filling in the large areas of black, I did notice a peculiarity with the paper. It seemed to have had lots of little white specks that did not accept the color well when I used a water-based marker. These tiny areas appeared to be non-porous. I did not have this problem when I used solvent markers or pen & ink, it only occurred with the watercolor markers. It is definitely something to consider if you are planning on using water-based markers in your Moleskine sketchbook.

Shapes Were Cut Into the Pages of My Moleskine Sketchbook to Create the Letter O and P.

Shapes Were Cut Into the Pages of My Moleskine Sketchbook to Create the Letter "O" and "P". The Letter "O" borrows it's design from the underlying "Q".

When You Lift the Page, You Can See How the Cut Out Was Formed that Creates an O on the Front Side and a P on the Reverse.

When You Lift the Page, You Can See How the Cutout Creates an "O" on the Front of the Page and a "P" on the Reverse.

The letter “P” is on the backside of letter “O” and was created from the D-shaped cutout. The horizontal lines unite all of the pages and form the background on the design for “O”, “P” and “Q”. These horizontal lines help mask the cutout and make it less obvious and provide a nice contrast to the circular patterns. The corner of the “O” page was cut to add some interest to the “P” and “Q” pages and to add some pop to the “O” on the reverse. Because of the similarity of the letters “P” and “Q”, I could not resist placing them next to each other on the same spread. They form the perfect mirror image.

The Cutout Used for the P is the Backside of the Cutout Used for the Letter O

The Cutout Used for the "P" is also Used for the Letter "O" on the Reverse.

The Letters P and Q are so Similar, I Couldnt Resist Putting them Together on the Same Page.

The Letters "P" and "Q" are so Similar, I Couldn't Resist Putting them Together on the Same Page.

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Tired of the 2-dimensional images I’ve been creating, I wanted to try something different. Letter “N” is a pop-up letter that was created from some old business card stock I had laying around the office. Because the tone of the “N”and the background colors were so similar, I opted for a horizontal format for the background to add some much needed contrast to offset the vertical line of the letter. I used my Tombow Dual Brush Markers to create the watery background for quick and easy color. A few simple tabs were included in the design of the letter that were later folded and glued into the pages of the Moleskine Sketchbook. It took some experimentation to get the letter to pop up when the pages were opened, but I manged to get it to pop up slightly. I could have gone for more pop, but this could have kept me occupied for hours to get just the right pop and I was not in the mood to obsess over the height of my pop at the time. Perhaps I will experiment with this on another letter down the line.

Letter N is a Pop-Up Letter and Was a Nice Diversion from 2-Dimensional Wrok.

Letter "N" is a Pop-Up Letter and Was a Nice Diversion from 2-Dimensional Art Work.

If you are designing a journal or scrapbook for a child a pop-up letter or picture would be a great surprise for the reader. It is relatively simple to do and has a big impact. This pop up was created by making a few folds on the letter and gluing it down.

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I wanted to go back to pen & ink for the letter “M” because I really like the the smooth surface on the paper in this sketchbook and I was in the mood to draw detail instead of color washes. Negative space was created for the letter by using tiny shapes that are similar to popcorn. This was fun in the beginning, but by the time I finished, I had a bit of a headache and my hand was cramped up. To create the darker areas, I drew the blobs closer together and I spread them apart when I wanted to lighten the background. This was one of those I was glad to finish.

The Moleskine Sketchbook Has Paper that is Ideal for Pen & Ink Sketching.

The Moleskine Sketchbook Has Paper that is Ideal for Pen & Ink Sketching.

Lots of Little Popcorn Shaped Images Create the Background

Lots of Little Popcorn Shaped Images Create the Background

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Ever have one of those days where it is difficult to do anything? My “L” day was one of those days and it is evident from the pen & ink illustration. My “L” is unfinished and represents the lethergy I was feeling when I was journaling this letter. The drawing feels right with the incomplete word “lethargic” at the bottom. I am happy to leave this as-is to remind me that not every day is an easy day and not all journaling needs to be finished to communicate a feeling or mood. I am sure that when I revisit this journal in the distant future, this page will be a strong reminder of what I was feeling at the time I created it.

Not All Work Needs to Be Finished to Communicate a Strong Feeling or Mood.

Not All Work Needs to Be Finished to Communicate a Strong Feeling or Mood.

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When creating “K”, I wanted to create a collage so I could paste additional paper across the back of the previous “J” page which had a large tear. I didn’t want to risk tearing it completely through. I also wanted to create the collage because I hadn’t done one yet. The interpretation of “K” is more figurative than I usually do, which was fun. To keep the collage from looking so rigid and too much like a magazine cut out, I added color blocks by pressing a pale green stamp pad onto the paper. The stamp pad creates a block of color that is imperfect with lighter areas around the edges. Circular Chinese coin images were added for an additional pop of color and to give some relief to the hard angles.

I Created a Collage on the Illustration of K so I Could Cover the Tear on the Previous Page.

A Collage was Used to Create "K" so I Could Cover the Tear on the Previous Page.

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Because I love how the acrylic paints look and feel in a Moleskine Sketchbook, I decided to create a thick, layered page. I started by applying the acrylic to the page with a roller. This gives a flat, even application and it fills the page quickly. When rolling the paint on the right page, I accidentally removed the top layer of paper from the page. At first, this was disappointing, but I decided to use it as part of the illustration. I built the background by rolling several colors and giving each layer time to dry before applying the next. This gives the pages a rich, texture that feels a bit like stucco when you run your hand across it.

The white images were applied as the final layer. I used a white pen to create the letter “J” and the webbing, which adds another texture. A final coat of Golden soft gel was applied using my fingers to create a top layer that adds more texture and protects the white layer.

Multiple Layers of Acrylic Were Used to Create TextureMultiple Layers of Acrylic Were Used to Create Texture

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The letter “I” is so simple, that I did not want to make the illustration too literal, so I merged a watercolor illustration to a cropped photo to see what would happen. As usual, there was some bubbling to the paper, but because I had painted acrylic on the previous page, the left page had only minor bubbling. The acrylic paint on the reverse side seemed to help the paper retain its shape better than it without it. This is something to keep in mind if you would like to add watercolor illustrations to the sketchbook paper. I was able to paint 4 very thick layers of acrylic paint as the dot of the “I” with no problems. In fact, the acrylic paint is my favorite medium to use on this journal at the moment. The photo of the wolf  was cut from a magazine and pasted down and there was a little bit of bubbling to the paper wherever there was glue. I think in the future I will use a dry adhesive tape runner such as Tombow’s Mono Adhesive so I don’t have this problem again.

If any of you have had good results with your Moleskine Sketchbook, I would love to hear from you. Let me know what you are doing.

The Paper in the Moleskine Sketchbook Accepts Glued Images with Ease.

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I decided to use acrylic paints in the Moleskine Sketchbook for the letter “H”. I wanted to see how far I could push the paper, so I laid a thick layer of black acrylic paint across the 2-page spread, expecting lots of bubbling. Once dry, the pages did curl, but I was pleasantly surprised to find that the paper curled evenly, without bubbling. Also, one the paint had dried and the book was closed for a while, most of the curl flattened out with exception of s slight curl towards the outside edges of the pages. The dried paint left a smooth, plasticized layer which was easy to paint additional layers on top of. I was surprised that the paper performed so well with the acrylic paint and look forward to using more in the future.

The Paper in the Moleskine Sketchbook Performed Surprisingly Well when Painted with Acrylic Paint.

The Paper in the Moleskine Sketchbook Performed Surprisingly Well when Painted with Acrylic Paint.

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