Teen Book Art Workshop

I had a great time last week teaching a book arts workshop to teens at the Sunnyvale Public library. I really wasn’t sure what to expect. I have taught small workshops with adults and young children but never young teens and never more than 10 students.  It turned out to be a really cool experience. There were about 18 students mostly young women but a few creative young men as well. I started by telling them about the anatomy of a book, talked about how to check if a book is first edition or valuable and then showed them different things they can make with old books. Then we made a bunch of paper feathers to get comfortable with cutting, gluing and shaping. Then we jumped right in and started making the hanging book mobiles. This is where they had a chance to get really creative picking out the book they wanted to use, how they wanted the pages to hang and the finished piece to look. Some got through the project really quickly while others took their time and were more meticulous. One fun thing that I didn’t anticipate was that several of them decided to use the feathers they made to decorate the outside of their mobile.

The staff and facilities at the Sunnyvale library were fantastic too. I appreciated all of their help. I am really glad I had the opportunity to teach the workshop and hope I can do more in the future.

Teen Bppk Art worksop

book arts class

Crystallized Book

I love experimenting with new processes especially ones that combine science and art. I decided to try and create the crystallized books made popular by Alexis Arnold . By now you probably know my love of all things books and book arts so of course I couldn’t wait to try this technique and see what I could achieve. Using the common household cleaner Borax you basically dissolve as much borax as you can in boiling water, submerge the book or any item for that matter and let it cool, waiting for the crystals to form. The first book I added I let sit for 7 hours and made the mistake of not dissolving the borax at the bottom of the pan enough so I got some caking of the solution. The second book I decided to add some food coloring to create pinkish crystals, I let the book sit for about 12 hours. While I like the look of these I want to try and get the really big crystals formed. So I am going to try some different combinations to see what I can get.

Now I am thinking of all the different items I can crystallize!

Crystal 1

Crystal 2 Crystal 4