Tuesday, 8 January 2013

How to keep an Art Book

I have had many sketchbooks that I have simply lost interest in. I just wasn't motivated to keep creating artwork in them. Then once I was in Asda (a British supermarket) and I saw a sketchbook. You know those Moleskine books, the plain ones that you can draw and paint in? Well there was a cheaper knock off that they were selling. A6 for £2, A5 for £3 and A4 for £4. I brought the A4 one and decided to start an 'Art Journal/Art Book'. The paper was thin- I think it was 90gsm (it did not handle watercolour well at all and most markers bled through) and all I did basically was do anything art related. They were not rough sketches- they were final pieces of art work. Most of them had writing- maybe a drawing of my pets and a few lines on what their names are and so on. Some pages I printed off photographs off the Internet of, for example, places I want to visit and I would do a page on that. It's visual! My Art Books are all about being visual. 

So how do you keep one? 

  1. Find a good sketchbook. Plain pages are recommended but if you want lined paper then use it! You should get a sketchbook with thick paper so it can handle all mediums. My second art journal is an A4 casebound sketchbook (If I want to stick on a full A4 page it'll be easier if there aren't spirals), 170gsm with perforated pages which are good if I want to rip out a page (my last Art Book is falling apart because I ripped out so many pages). Markers don't bleed on at all and the paper handles watercolour well. 
  2. If you want to decorate the front cover. I've decided to keep mine simple- I got a scrap piece of paper, painted it with bright colours and wrote down 'Art Journal' and wrote my name. I stuck it down with tap and stuck on a few stickers. It's bright, colourful and not too much. If you want to just keep the cover blank- it's what I did for a while!
  3. If you want to, do a front page welcoming people to the Art Book. I just put down my name,  a few things about me and my address if it gets lost. I also drew a little picture of me. You could also decorate the inside front cover, if it is blank.
  4. Now do anything you want as long as it is visual. Do any type of art- you could do a few rough sketches, a very detailed final portrait of a friend, a scrapbook type page documenting a recent holiday- anything! Put the date on top so you know when you did it and if you want to, add page numbers- try maybe doing this when you finish it so if you decide to rip out a page and you've already numbered all the pages, the number order will not be right. Maybe do a page on what your artistic inspirations are- I love doing that! 
  5. Remember to have fun. Don't make it a chore unless you have a deadline. Your Art Book should be fun to do and it shouldn't be a pain in the bum to have to get up everyday to do it. 

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