Friday, December 15, 2006


Last month I took a short portrait course. We worked with flashlight and soft boxes which gave beautiful light. Especially after trying out several positions and fiddling the camera!
This portrait was from the first lesson and I have worked it into this digital collage. The elements on the background were photos taken in France on a holiday.

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Altered Book Spread about Time

This is the spread that I made In Tari June's book Wishes and Dreams. My wish? Going back in time and undo some of my mistakes that I madein my life!
I used the new colour of my favorite brand acrylics ( Galeria from Winsor and Newton) Copper! It does not look well on this picture, but when you see it, it looks like I have used a thin copper sheet for the sides, it looks soooo good!
The spread is very simple, so I added a beaded fringe at the bottom of the pages. Here is a better view:

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Book of Dreams arrived home!

My book: Book of Dreams, from the Crazy Round Robin came home! I never realized that the book was considered to be bright coloured - I thought they were soft colours... Beautiful spreads were made by: Claire (UK), Linda (UK), Jill (UK), Shakti (Spain), Pascale (France), Susan (Germany) and Mika (Spain).
Thank you all for making this book shine so brightly!

To see how the book started out, see: New book binded for next Round Robin:
And my own alterations at: Book of Dreams ready for the Round Robin

This was a wonderful RR. The name 'Crazy' refers to the idea that we had to go completely over the top with the alterations and decorations. Well, as you can see, this happend to my book. Despite the extra space that I created by binding in 'stubs' in the book, it is so filled that it can't be closed anymore. It feels so rich...!
I am thinking about making boxes for my altered books, so that they will survive the coming years. But in the meantime I place them in my workroom so that I can enjoy them everyday!

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Going to be famous?

Guide to great Photography Book

This week, we received the book from the photography website The book: Guide to great photography, was created by the inventor of the website Peter Bargh and contains not only his photographs but a wealth of images taken by members of EPZ. Both my DH and I have two pictures in this book published, so I am mighty proud of that!
My images are featured in a portfolio on page 195, together with some text about my method of photography.

If you want a book with plenty of images, short tutorials, different subjects and styles, you will want this book. Never have I seen a photography book with so many inspirational images (even if mine were not in this book....). Especially since all styles of photographers are in here, this is an ultimate guide!

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Spread for new Round Robin

On the ABEurope group we just started a new Round Robin. This time we made it very easy, every participant choosed her own theme. I received this gorgeous book Healing Woods from Jill from Germany to work in. She had already put a lot of work in it, which makes it easier to work in.
I painted the silhouette of the tree, altered some images, stamped the text and added some fabric leaves. Now this book is sent to France for Pascale to work in.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Altered Puzzle Pieces for Pascale

Pascale, from France, sent me some smaller pieces to alter. Her theme was Celtic and Medieval art. It was diffucult to work on this small scale. For instance, the postage stamp that was added to the piece on the left, felt completely away after I used a stamp and embossed over it... The pieces do look better in reality, though!

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Altered Puzzle Pieces

On our Yahoo group, Pascale from France suggested an altered puzle pieces swap. From Julie from England, I received these jumbo pieces. Since she had no preference for a theme, I opted for Monet and Botticello.
It was a challenge to work with these pieces, especially with the composition. It also took more time than I thought, but then, I tend to change my ideas while I work - a bit too often...

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Coast of Bretagne

We spent our one week holiday at the north coast of Bretagne this year and it was marvellous. The coast is very rugged and varied. There were beautiful rock formations everywhere and the influence of the sea so impressive.
I had some watercolour paints with me, but transparant watercolours were not very suitable to try to capture the rugged landscape.
Luckily I just had bought the book: Paper, Metal & Stitch written by Maggie Grey and Jane Wild for me to read on vacation. I found some inspiration in it! The supermarché sold brown kraftpaper, needles and threads. Together with the cardstock wrappings of our groceries, I made several collages.

Detail of the first collage

These materials suited much, much better! At home I added acrylic paint and mounted the collages on thick paper.
Second collage of the series.
Detail of the second collage.

Saturday, August 05, 2006

ATC cards for exchange

This week I made some ATC's (Artist Trader Cards) for a swap on Europeanatc (Yahoo group for European traders). The theme was Maps. Earlier this week I bought a 50 year old atlas for 1 euro. The maps on it are not very, very old, but for instance the lettering was still done by hand and stencils. I really like that book and will use these maps in other projects of course.

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Felting in summer

A few weeks ago I went to Nellie de Mulder, an artist here in our village, to felt. Apart from the work that she sells, she also teaches felting classes. (See her website at: )
I tried to make pages for a felted book, and wanted to make simple 'drawings' in the felt. In the picture on top you can see how the wool was laid out on the cotton cloth. The fabric is used as a base for the felting and gives a very textural effect after felting. The picture was taken after the wool was felted a little bit.
On the other side of this 'page' I laid out another pattern. Then 3 different pages were felted by rolling them in bubble plastic and rolling over the table.
The felts were great. I like the rippled effect that the cotton fabric within causes. Just too bad that the pages were way to large for a felted book.

Cutting them up will loose the graphic designs on them. So I will probably end up making new, smaller pages for a felted book!

Friday, July 14, 2006

Spread for the Crazy Round Robin

Shakti's book from the Crazy (over the top) Round Robin had a Goddess theme. A picture of an old painting was just what I needed for this spread. I found it hard to tie the elements together in this spread. Too bad that the picture does not show the organza and embroidery well....

Thursday, June 29, 2006

Spread for Peace&Hope Round Robin

For Glynis' Hope and Peace book, I made this spread. Not visible on the picture is the wrinting: Seek hope and you will find peace. I really enjoyed working on this spread - I guess the book begins to speak out loud now....

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Tip In Swap

Here are some of the tipins that I did for the TipIn Swap from ABEurope at Yahoogroups. The theme was Lazy Summer Days.
Most of the time, I use double folded pages to make the tipin. It is easier to collage these pages.
Also, you don't have to worry about glueing the tipins in a book.

Monday, June 26, 2006

Colourful Booklets for Swap

This month our group at Art_By_The_Month (on Yahoo) decided that June's theme would be trying a new technique or materials, or using materials that you did not use for a while.
Since it had been a few months since I made a book, I decided to go back to bookmaking. Too bad that sending selfmade books to the other side of the world was not an option for my budget, so I kept it simple and made smaller booklets.

The covers are from backgrounds that I was making for paintings which never worked for a painting - but works pretty well as a book cover!
There is just one signature of light paper, sewn with linen. The signature is connected to the cover with a ribbon. A closure was made by sewing buttons on the cover and twisting some hread around it.

They were fun to make. I might make some extra for little gifts.

Friday, June 23, 2006

Simple pictures

I like my life when it is simple. Simple pleasures, simple things. This is a simple shot of just one eye of one of my cats: Pico. She was named after Picasso before we found out that she was female.
She looks a bit mean on this picture, but that is because she is mean! She is constantly in fight with her (lovely) sister Coco and regards the garden as her terrotority. Coco can count on an attack from Pico when she is not careful in the garden! And this has been going on for the last 10 years.....

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Iris in oil

This painting was finished in May, but it took a while before I took a photograph from it. It was done in oil paint, which I like to use for flower painting. A bit different is this painting though. I tend to make softer paintings, but this one has a lot of movement in it.
I made it after working on a larger soft painting of another iris, and wanted to make up all the paint that was left on the palette. Maybe that explains the difference?

Saturday, June 10, 2006

Clematis from the garden

I had been working in our garden and could not resist picking this clematis. I put it in a simple glass and took several photographs with my favorite lens: a macro lens (105 mm Sigma).
Often, I like to capture the 'feeling' of a flower, its colour, shape or just the rippling of the petals. That is why most of the picture is soft, out of focus. What do you think, do all pictures need to be clear?

Sunday, May 28, 2006

Spread for Crazy Round Robin

I received Susan's book from Germany, to work in. She had a 'no theme' book. I came across this image of horses with their manes in the wind in beautiful brown colours and used that as a starting point.
After I made the decision to use that image, the words for the spread came up quite easily:
wild horses
running free
The book was very small compared to other books in this Round Robin, but I liked to work in this size and format. Small books seem less intimidating!
I tried out some foam stamps with ornaments, maybe a strange combination, but because I stamped them with bronze paint, it seams to fit well.
I also used some non woven polyester and distressed it with a paintstripper (seems to work as good as a heatgun). This was handsewn to the page - easier that glueing.
Am curious about the next book that is coming my way!

Saturday, May 20, 2006

French Tulips in Holland

Funny, I have lived my whole life in Holland, but it was only on a recent holiday in France, that I saw so many tulips in one week!
We were staying in Bretagne, near Ploughrescant, and the small cities that we visited for shopping were decorated with lots of flowers, mostly these beautiful striped tulips.
From my DH I got these tulips, back in Holland, on Mother's Day. Time for some photography!
This is just one of the pictures that I took.

Altered CD for Art-by-the-month

The first time that I altered CD's. These are for the Yahoo group in which we send each other, every month, a piece of art. The theme this month was Music. Last month I received a winderful altered CD, so I wanted it to try it myself.
The backside of the CD is collaged with music paper and painted ricepaper.
During this project I was thinking of making a CD-book, in which the pages are all CD's with collage....

Friday, May 19, 2006

Altered Book Spreads for Claire's Crazy Family

Here are the spreads that I made for the Crazy RR, for Claire from England. The theme of her book was Crazy people, crazy families.
I made some tip-ins so because I needed more space to work out my idea.

The 'story' is about an adventurous family doing crazy things - except the main character: she only collects stamps....

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Tags for Art exchange

These are the tags that I made for an art exchange. The theme was 'Vintage Children'. Just last week I found some old musicbooks. One of them was of Dutch children's songs. I used pages of that book as a background. The images came from old postcards and were colour photo copied. I also added old dictionary pages (no need to distress pages for an aged look...) red silk paper and some lace.
I like the simplicity of tags, they are ideal to use as a base for collages and they add interest to altered books as well. The tags were sent out to Holland, England and Australia.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Book of Dreams ready for the Round Robin

The Book of Dreams is (almost) ready for the Round Robin. There will be some decorations added when the book comes home in 9 months.
On the cover I glued a digital collage from my photographs, on the book after adding sheer organza which was stitched with thread and some small beads.
The inside has a medium-transfer (layers of Golden Medium on a print, rubbing the paper off) of on old collage that I made a while ago.
The flap holds an envelope with a little note for the people who will add their work to my book.

Turning the envelope will show the title page with another copy of the collage, behind some organza again. I like that 'dreamy' effect.
The book is made from pastepaper, so there is a lot of colour and texture in the book. I binded not only 'whole' pages, but also pages that were cut back to a few centimetres and this forming a 'stub'. These stubs are ideal to create more space between the pages and allow bulky pages.
I also like them for adding a different page, e.g. a sheet of silkpaper, or adding an envelope or tags. In this spread I used an open paper sort, glued on the stub.

The image is made from al sort of images, the picture of the hand comes from , a free source of images. This is the first page of the spread.

The second page from the spread that I made. And finally the sign-in pages were two pouches will hold the sign-in tags.

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

New book binded for next Round Robin

Shakti from Spain proposed to start a Round Robin in which we would go completely over the top regarding the artwork and embellishments, we call it the Crazy RR, but will decide on the theme individually.
Seems like a good challenge. Instead of altering an existing book, I decided to bind a complete new book.
Cover, not decorated
This is the cover of the book before adding the decorations. The threads (barely visible here) were sewed in on the spine to add some beads.pastepapers within the book
I used pastepapers as signatures so that there was not one empty white page in the book. Also I added some 'stubs' as spacedivider, but also to add extra tip-ins, envelopes, tags etc. to the book.
some of the pastepapers
And here is the top view of the book. I do not need many pages, there are only 14 of them, plus 20 stubs.
Top view of book

Round Robin Peace and Hope

Front cover Peace and Hope
This is the cover of my book for the Round Robin 'Peace and Hope' from the ABEurope group (on Yahoo).
This book will be sent to 7 other artitsts around Europe who will create artwork in my book. Inside the cover
This is the inside of the book with the titlepage: Whisperings of peace. Peace is so fragile, whether you are talking about peace in the world or finding peace inside yourself.
First spread in the book
This is the first spread that I made before I sent it away. For some reason I kept it quite simple, it seems to fit the theme pretty well.

Puzzle pieces for art exchange

These puzzle pieces were made for an art exchange. I send them to Australia, England and here the Netherlands. In return I received some great artwork from the participants.

The pieces came from a childrens puzzle. The pieces were sanded, painted and then collaged. I rubbed in some bronze paint (not visible on the photo) to deepen the colour. Some fiber was added for texture.

Monday, January 23, 2006

Watercolour drawings

A few months ago I made several drawings from flowers that I had photographed. I mounted the sketches. They were only lying around and often in the way. So I bined these pages also in a book.
For the cover I used wrinkeld ricepaper that I later painted with acrylic paints to match the colour of the booklinen.

This gives a very nice texture and feel to the covers.

Books with watercolour paper

Working in books is something I really enjoy. Especially with watercolour. So I made these two little books with heavy watercolourpaper.
Now that I have learned to make books with booklinen and decorative paper, I want to find new ways to decorate the covers.

Thursday, January 05, 2006

Little Watercolour Sketches

Sometimes I like to use watercolour sketches in my digital collages. They are no pieces of real artwork, but I often have a relaxing time making them.
This is another one: