Artwork by Tara Finlay

My personal Art Journal artwork.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Using Discarded Books as Journals

Every year, twice a year, our library holds a huge book sale that people come to from all over the country. On the last day, they have a $1 a bag sale. That is the day I like to go and scour for the old, unwanted books to make into art journals. Since I used to work next door, I know that most of the books leftover from that sale end up in a dumpster with the covers torn off (I think because they go to different recycling areas.) So I don't feel bad about paying the $1 and rescuing some of these books. If the binding is completely broken, I save the covers to re-bind a handmade journal using papers I have sewn myself. If the spine is in good condition, I might just journal directly in the book itself. I always save the interior pages of the broken bindings for collage or to cut out words to use in other art projects. I often use words cut out of books in my jewelry. You can see a couple of examples of this in 1000 Jewelry Inspirations by Sandra Salimoney. If the book has nice illustrations, it can complement your artwork. In other cases, you may want to obliterate the contents entirely and cover everything with artwork. Here are two examples of where I covered the contents of the existing book:
This is a picture of my grandmother, Rachel Cummings Maroney.
On this side, I wrote about discovering the parentage of my grandmother, whose parents were Martin and Julia Sweeney. Here are two spreads incorporating the illustrations in the original book. This is a children's encyclopedia from the 50s or 60s. Many of the pages were ruined by scribbling, but I just covered that up with Gesso.
In this image, I left the Mastadon and his buddy on the bottom right.
Over here I kept the hot air balloon and the dirigible. They seemed relevant to my writing that day. Part of the image is cut off. I was lamenting my lack of a B12 shot for many days. I drew a little figure holding onto the existing helium balloons on the page. These images will show larger if you click them. Please link directly back to my blog if you pin these on pinterest. Thanks!

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

I'm making art again!

Hello everyone. I am making art again after a long hiatus. Stay tuned for updates.

Monday, April 11, 2011 has moved!

Hi friends! I've moved my blog to and new and exciting things are happening there. Come on over!