If you’ve been watching my series of Altered Book video workshops and want to work along with me to alter a book, but haven’t been able to find the perfect book to alter, here are my top five tips to help:
1.Choose a book that is small and doable.
Yes that old dictionary with a thousand pages is beautiful, but the paper is too thin and it’ll become your life’s work. I like to keep my altered book projects short and doable. This pocket-sized birthday book is a great choice and won’t take forever to complete.
2. Don’t worry about condition.
Old books can be fragile, but there are lots of creative ways to rescue and repair them. And if it’s in a really rough state, you won’t feel bad about changing it.
3. Find a theme
Part of what will attract you to a book is the original content. Maybe you’ll look for something that already contains text and images that relate to a theme you want to work with. There are some really fun ways you can modify and use original content.
4. Look for illustrations
As artists, we’re visual people so we’re bound to be drawn in by beautiful photos, frontispieces and illustrations. Children’s books are often richly illustrated and a great inspirational resource.
5. Buy cheap
My favourite hunting ground for books to alter is the box outside the second-hand bookshop. That’ll be where the really cheap books are! Charity shops, thrift shops and markets are also worth a visit. The key is always keeping your eyes peeled for the perfect bargain. Spending a small amount on a book will free you up to be experimental and liberated in your altering. That said, it’s always worth checking you haven’t discovered a lost treasure worth a fortune lurking in the bargain basement! Whatever you do, don’t alter anything precious!
I hope that helps you get started in your mission to find books for altering. The hunt can be as enjoyable as the altering!
Bye for now,