Tuesday, April 3, 2018

Junk Journals are a new passion
and a way to sort my photography
Coffee dyed papers, cut card stock placement holder sewn for shabby distressed look 
and my photos. One page from a signature representing "Wicked Plants" exhibit.

One of four signatures from a trip to Jamestown Settlement. I used one photo as a tuck spot 
with paper cut greenery and a placement holder for three other
 photos and included an envelope with a dried leaf.

Photos from one signature of an exhibition of Amy Howard's "Wicked Plants" at the local
 science center fit nicely in the placement holder. I can fit five photos 
per holder with plenty of room for journaling and tabs to separate subject 
 rooms of exhibit. The photos give the paper booklet a nice substantial feel.

As much as I love creating digital photography there is something missing when you can't hold an item in your hand. I miss real photographs:) I have years of images that sit patiently in file folders in my computer waiting for me to view them, reminisce with them, create with them. But out of site does perpetuate out of mind.

With apps like Snapfish and others offering 100 free photos each month I decided to give it a try.  Snailmail delivers and  the simple pleasure derived from holding these glossy paper images is hard to describe. On the first day of each month I look forward to selecting my 100 photos to bring to life. 

Six months and 600 photos later, now they as well sit stored in a paper folder in a cardboard box...out of site, out of mind. Problem not solved!

I liked the look of junk journals and tomes I was seeing on Youtube by artists like Nik the Booksmith in particular. So I plunged into coffee dying plain papers and designing the photo or ephemera holders, based on a Tim Holtz's design, that easily accepted  the 4 x 6 photos I was storing.

Not to be overwhelmed by creating an actual book I started with a single signature. I gathered six sheets of printer paper, dyed and dried them. They were folded in half and sewn down the center.  Giving me twelve pages in a signature. The coffee dying process created texture and continuity to the pages and the holders. Sewing around the edges of the holders gives more texture. I love all the strings hanging off the holders. That may change over time but right now I love the feel and authenticity they give.

Each signature can easily hold twenty five photos and give plenty of room for journaling and adding ephemera in the 5 1/2 x 8 1/2 booklet. I have started keep blank signatures and parchment envelopes ready that I can take with me on trips to write thoughts in the moment and collect and will add my photos when snailmail delivers the next month.

I think you could say I have this "out of  site, out of mind" issue finally sorted out:) I love holding the signatures, flipping through the pages adding notes as I remember experiences and thoughts.

I am close to having six signatures finished now and it's time for a mindset to bind these memories into a book that will live on my coffee table to enjoy with family and friends. 

A new adventure, a new learning curve, bringing life and texture to digital images..."ain't life grand"?

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