Blog

First toroidal book panel – done!

Today was a harder day in my finish-unfinished-stuff adventure – I tackled the first blank panel in a toroidal book created during a workshop with Ken Leslie at the 2014 Paper and Book Intensive.

Here’s what it looked like before I started working on it:

Handmade toroidal book by Elissa Campbell

What was the issue? Well, I had to draw. And I can’t draw. Or to be more generous, I can draw, but not well. For this reason, I tend to go abstract.

And that’s what I did while working on the panel in my toroidal book. The concept of this particular book was that this is who/how I am today. We were instructed to do artwork each day on one of the page spreads. I never worked on two of the panels because I ran out of time on those days.

I used only the media that I had with me when I went to PBI. One of my options was my fantabulous set of 126 Caran d’Ache Classic Neocolor II Water-Soluble Pastels. I bought it for myself on a whim when I was having a really crappy day. I LOVE THEM.

126 set Caran d'Ache Classic Neocolor II Water-Soluble Pastels

126 set Caran d'Ache Classic Neocolor II Water-Soluble Pastels

Drrrooollll…

I started by looking back at my notes for the specific dates I was at PBI. On those two blank panel days, I was in a workshop with Bonnie StahleckerAn Artist’s Approach to Emboss­ing Leather for Books. I found this quote in my notes:

May all your tools be sharp.

It made me think of the experience of sharp tools and in a nutshell, that usually means that at some point I’m going to cut myself.

So I got bloody with my artwork (gross!). I was disappointed because my watercolor crayons didn’t have a red that was sufficiently bloody – the reds all come out pastel-y.

I drew a bunch of arrows in red and silver. I then took a wet paintbrush and loosely painted water over the red arrows so the color would bleed (yeah, I’m pretty literal). I then dipped the red watercolor crayon directly in the water and made little dots all over the panel.

Toroidal book panel

At this point, I wasn’t sure what to do next, so I waited for the panel to dry.

When I came back to the piece, I got the urge to draw white circles all over the arrows. So I did it. A white watercolor crayon dipped in water did the trick.

Toroidal book panel

It was interesting that I still had the urge to use circular imagery in this book. I seem to have entered the mindset I was in during PBI (check out and day 3 and day 4) – it’s cool that I could get back to that place.

Now my book looks like this:

Handmade toroidal book by Elissa Campbell

Just one more panel to go!

6 Responses to “First toroidal book panel – done!”

By Lmvhudso - 23 February 2016 Reply

You may believe you can’t draw well but you have a very sure sense of composition. I love how this book is going and your approach is inspirational for me. Thank you!

By Elissa - 25 February 2016 Reply

Thanks for your kind words!

I get all squidgy when it comes to drawing – my confidence level is pretty low.

Elissa

By Karen Krieger - 24 February 2016 Reply

I love how this is coming out — so wonderful! Looking forward to seeing the finished piece.

By Elissa - 25 February 2016 Reply

Karen –

Thanks! I’m feeling good now that I can see the finish line with this book.

Elissa

By Penne - 25 February 2016 Reply

Elissa, so enjoy hearing your thought process for the panel and looking forward to the last one! Even on my phone screen, it looks great.
Penne

By Elissa - 25 February 2016 Reply

Penne –

You are such a peanut. 🙂 I’m looking forward to completing the next panel!

Elissa

So what do you think? I'd love to know!

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This