Thursday, July 31, 2008

Book Arts: Travel Journal

Jonas (my 9.5 year-old), my mom, and brother are taking a road trip to Indiana. So I put together a little Travel Journal for Jonas, inspired by the Visual Chronicles book that I first mentioned here. My idea was to make a book that would have some pages of prompts and plenty of pages of almost-blank for my boy to embellish on the road. The paper inside alternates between lightweight rice paper in a light tan, and white heavyweight printmakers' paper (because this is what I had, thanks to Joanie's dad).

Any real bookbinders should not look too closely at the binding because I totally winged it.

Inside front cover, some ideas for embellishment:
Bee stamps:

We're big fans of the car game of "If you were a _________, what would you be?" So I made a grid of the three participants on the trip, some starters (time of day, color, animal, season, mountain vs. ocean, etc.) and left some blank space too:

"How many times did you stop for someone to pee?" and "How much did Nana spend on gas? Keep track of each time and then add it up here." Questions on this page:
The back cover:Some things I found out:
  • The oven at low temp can help dry out tacky pages of acrylic paint, but doesn't help dry gel medium.
  • Gel medium is tacky forever. A little cornstarch rubbed on the affected areas helped smooth things out a bit.
  • Drilling the holes for the binding made me almost hyperventilate a few times.
More Baked Goods
Could there be a summer post without a special dessert?
This apricot tart (OK, so it's baked in a pie plate because I have no tart pan) was baked in honor of Baby Alice (almost 2), who came to visit with her parents and charmed us with her tiny voice and many words. The tart above was not nearly as yummy as Alice herself.


  1. WOW! What a fantastic journal! I love it! So cool!
    That pie looks great, too! :)

  2. This journal is so much fun... I was thinking about our books in '09 plan for the Library ... what if we all made ... hmmm: pages and then passed them around to each other. We could art and write at home and then send the pages back/bring them back the next month.
    So this would work even if someone was only around for the summer: they'd have 3 or 4 pages, or could keep up the correspondence by mail.
    So my book could be, say: 5 x 7 and each month I'd make one 5 x 7 page for every person who came to the swap, hand them out, and everyone would have the next month to add to the page.
    Each month we'd have a starter idea: leaves, teacups, grids, whatever, and your interpretation of "teacup" might be a border of teacups along the bottom of your 8x8 page and mine might be a hand-drawn teacup in the middle of my 5x7 page.
    Get it?
    Let's talk...

  3. Oh yeah, and in December/January we would have a binding party!

  4. The cutest journal ever! I love this idea. If I were on that trip there would have been some extra pages for the number of times they had to stop for bathroom breaks...and hopefully Jonas doesn't have to use the back of the page to add up your mom's gas expenses...yikes! :)

    Today I posted about the amazing stamp you sent me. Loving it so much. Your creativity never ceases to inspire me!

    Love you! -c

  5. Iris, your journal is a wonderful gift to your son! I am impressed by the time you took to make this very special and beautiful gift. I hope that he will use it and it will be saved somewere and treasured!