Friday, October 21, 2016

Publishing Zines

A Zine is a Do-It-Yourself magazine. Over the last 17 years I published 22 Zines. My first Zine had my art techniques and I swapped Zines with other artist book makers. 
My last Zine was about my ten days in Paris and contained internet links plus 53 photos - Mon Dieu!
My first Zine was cut and paste. After that, I used my home word processor.
Zines are printed in small editions. I received Zines in swaps from Alaska to Hawaii, and practically all 50 states. Some had advertising, contributors or held interviews with other artists.
Starting with my second Zine, each one had the following:
  • Table of Contents
  • Workshop Review
  • Swap Stuff
  • My Carvings
  • A Poem (of my own)
  • Calligraphy
  • Art Book Review

My Zine 10 had instructions and a sample book for a Japanese binding technique, the Tortoise Shell Stitch.
In Zines 13 to 16 - I issued “An Invitation” - to share my interests, my calligraphy, my print carving, and my artwork. Sound familiar? Kind of like this blog.

I contributed an article: Mining for Creativity, a workshop review to L.K. Ludwig’s first Zine, called Memory & Dream in 1999. You can buy her 2008 art journaling book here:

Teesha Moore produced and authored professional Zines for more than 10 years - with advertising, many articles and pictures. They were inspiring! Some of her Zines are still for sale on her Etsy site:  
In 2008, Zine 17: Zine Creation has zine-making instructions. I taught 22 people how to make a Zine at The Printing Museum in Houston; in April 2009 I taught 30 Austin Book Workers - who now have the Austin Book Arts Center - at DOMY Books - now Farewell Books - in Austin. 

Shameless Plug: You may want to Subscribe to my Blog (upper right side) - to know about a future blog that will have my full instructions for making your own Zine. 
The Houston Zine Fest this year: at The Lawndale Art Center on Saturday, November 19th, from 2:00 to 8:00 pm. Support Zinesters! If you read this far, please let me know if you have any questions or comments.
©Anne Rita Taylor 2016

Friday, October 14, 2016

Swapping Journal Pages

I had fun carving and journaling recently; it reminded me of my past participation in Art Journal swaps.
Before the current layering craze - to paint backgrounds, drop inks, fill in parts of stencils - we recorded daily personal events in our journals; sometimes adding illustrations.

Mostly I used quotes to practice calligraphy plus printed my carvings or used commercial rubber stamps.
I wrote about my travels in my handmade books. For one of the swaps: Twenty-five journalers exchanged Travel Journal pages.
One person would host and send the pages to those participating. Fun to receive photos, sketching, or just words.
I still participate in a carving swap as I mentioned last week:
And I am wondering about what image to carve for Christmas cards this year.
I still enjoy playing with calligraphy and rubber stamps in my journals. What are your favorite art journaling techniques?
©Anne Rita Taylor 2016

Friday, October 7, 2016

Print Vibe

My Owl Carving this week - for the Rubber Amateur Press Society quarterly swap due October - mentioned in an earlier blog:
Since it is the Season of the Witch - here is my skeleton carving. I was reminded of another Carving swap - Print Vibe 21 - that I joined for three years: 2010 through 2012. 
Heart and Print Vibe Cover Carvings by Tim Blackburn
Hosted by Tim Blackburn, an excellent carver, Professor of Radiology too. Tim looked for other carvers after 7 swaps; I carved & printed 21 prints - for the last 17 out of 24 issues. 
Another Halloween-theme: my Poe Carving. The print size: a third of an 8 1/2 by 11 inch page = 3 3/8 by 8 1/2 inches. I printed 21 original prints for each issue - 6 issues a year.
Who did not love Michael Jackson!?! I was pleased with my MJ Carving. With my Fish Carving below: I added watercolor.
Please let me know what you think about carving or printing - see my earlier blog:
I love multiples! Remember the rubber stamp craze during the 1990’s? That is another story...
©Anne Rita Taylor 2016

Friday, September 30, 2016

Journaling a Book of Hours

Personal journals are for lists, quotes, maps, art, appointments, perhaps prayers, and every day musings. In the 13th to 15th century a Book of Hours was a personally owned prayer book. 
The Contemporary Book of Hours workshop, through the Houston Calligraphy Guild, was taught by Carol Pallesen; she teaches at the Nevada Museum of Art in Reno. Carol's Foundational Calligraphy class starts October 18th.
From The Illuminated Page, Ten Centuries of Manuscript Painting in the British Library by Janet Backhouse, 1998
Medieval Books of Hours were written in Latin and lavishly decorated. 
Current journals have many variations; I use mine for calligraphy practice and art journaling.
The leather covers are 8 x 16 inches. In the workshop we tore 3 sheets of Arches paper. Carol's handouts included resources, definitions, history, sewing cradle instructions & calligraphic page proportions. I highly recommend taking Carol’s worthwhile class.
We decorated paper using Pelikan Plaka paints (the colors come from Germany; black and white are available from Dick Blick). Easy to write over this paint with FW Acrylic ink.
I got carried away - what else is new!?! I decorated pages with a red leather cover from Carol. Recently I bought leather from Tandy Leather to make books using variations of the long stitch binding.
Shameless plug: Today I sell smaller versions on my Etsy site: in different sizes, prices, & with doodads, mostly white pages. Custom orders on request!
Please let me know if you like this book style with wrap around covers. Reminds me of Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade!
©Anne Rita Taylor 2016

Friday, September 23, 2016

Making Books with Beads

I’m having fun this week making books with beads. Using my beads from CJ Bead Store in Katy.  

I made this beaded fringe book in a Houston workshop a few years ago.

It was very pretty with feather charms and various sizes of beads. As I remember - it took all day. So far I have not made another one exactly like it!

This week I made similar books using only a few beads with the Coptic binding. 
I used stiff board covers with 5 holes. And on the 5 signatures I used 7 holes with two for the kettle stitch at each end. The amount of thread is 10 times the length of the spine. 
An important part of Coptic binding is to cross the thread over the last inserted thread and go back with your needle into the same hole.
There are many kinds of Coptic binding tutorials.  There is an excellent online resource: click here.
I need to use some of these keys I collected. How do you use your collections; I would love to hear from you!
©Anne Rita Taylor 2016

Friday, September 16, 2016

Knotting a Pearl Necklace

I met with the Crafters Anonymous group on Saturday, a local crafting group.
We bring whatever craft we are working on. I brought beads and supplies to make necklaces. Plus I repaired a few of my necklaces, one has a Guillamine bead I bought in Africa.

On January 29th I wrote about creating with beads - click here to read that blog. 

I recently bought faux pearls at CJ Bead Store in Katy. Last summer I took a pearl knotting class there from Joy. I made two necklaces in small and larger size faux pearls. The supplies include: fish hook clasp, two knotting crimps, bead cord and pearls.
Plus the tools include scissors, needle-nose pliers, and this long needle awl.
First you thread the knotting crimp, make a knot, hook the crimp onto the fish hook, as pictured.
The difficult part of pearl knotting is getting the knots in between and up close against each pearl.
Place the tip of your thumb up against the knot to make sure it rests close to the pearl. My finished pearl necklace I made this week is sized in between my two others. 
Plus I made these necklaces to give as gifts. I plan to give them as Christmas gifts in 3 months. Tell my nieces not to look!
I’m glad I bought several large Guillamine beads, also known as African Trade Beads, when I visited Africa. Bead prices range from 50 cents for smaller beads up to $25.00!
Please let me know if you have tried knotting a pearl necklace or if you have any questions about how to go about doing it.
©Anne Rita Taylor 2016