Finished up a new journal last night. This is a close up of the plaster cover, the next photo shows the cover in its entirety.
I like to make the next journal when I get down to the last signature of the previous one; I write a lot so I know I'll be needing it soon. Sooooo juicy fun to hole up in my studio tearing paper, sewing, talking to myself. I'm great company.
This is the journal front and back. It has 4 signatures of 6 folded sheets; Italia and Roma papers interwoven. I reinforced the canvas spine with cardboard and the book is tighter. It tells me it loves its new, firm backbone and I do too.
Ah, cutting grapes for the table. Cows like grapes too and they know what grows on that vine very well. They are smart when it comes to food they like. They know where the goodies are just like we do.
We grow Hopi Dye Red Amaranth in our garden so I decided to make some ink out of the flowers. I looked all over the web for a recipe but found none so I used my noggin to codge something together. First I boiled it in water.
Then I added a dried up oak gall I'd gathered on my morning walk. The old timers used to make ink out of oak gall but theirs was probably fresh while mine had dried up and fallen off the tree. I threw it in anyway.
Then I added a splash of gum arabic for body and gin for the alcohol to make it dry faster (have a belt yourself while you're at it).
It made an excellent, brilliant red ink. Not wine red (hmmmm, another idea) but more of a quinacridone shade.
So then I gathered up some Oregon Grape to make some more ink out of. In my web ramblings I came across some notations about the pioneers making ink out of these. Probably they were fresher than this batch but things are drying up around here.
I only made a tiny batch because that's all the seeds I gathered. I threw in an onion peel for good measure. I used to make Easter egg dye for the kids out of them.
Using the same approach I made an ink that turned out pinky-brown. Beautiful but I think the best will be when I mix the two together. Why do I do these things? I have no idea beyong simple curiosity. My brain goes, "hey! What color would the ink be if you boiled this down?" and then I have to know. Plus I lovvve my dip pens.
Okay, that's all my news for today. Go forth and play nicely. Inspire each other. Be curious.