I had been waiting for this page. As I worked through my book I would periodically flip forward until I found the chair, the simple, yet intriguing chair. This was the chair I referenced to draw the very first image of my new visual journal, it inspired the cover of my book. This chair had become the first impression of my visual journal, as book cover art it had a big job. It must intrigue people, beckon them over, and encourage them to open the book and see what else it holds.
It was no accident that led me to draw a chair on my front cover. In fact, it was no accident that I ended up with a book on antique furniture as a base for my visual journal. It was a very calculated selection, which involved a couple of hours at my favorite Decatur antique store. I carefully wandered each booth, explored every shelf, and sifted through book after book until I found the prefect one. This book intrigued me, I found myself flipping through, visualizing my creations on it’s pages.
Furniture is one of my obsessions. Every piece of furniture in my house was carefully picked out. Each piece is unique, and I feel each piece has it’s own history. Every piece I selected was chosen because something appealed to me. Whether it was the color, shape, or peeling, layered paint that attracted me, something in each piece of furniture spoke to me, and I had to have it. I love nothing more than pursuing a local antique store or market. I can’t stand to be at the mall for longer than an hour, but I could easily spend hours in a musty, dusty, vintage shop.
With a furniture obsession such as mine, you would think my house would be a furniture museum, or graveyard. Even sitting here now I imagine chairs lining every wall in my house, tables stacked upon tables, and a garage busting at the seams. However, that is not the case. It may take years for me to find exactly what I am looking for, and I am willing to hold out until I find the perfect piece at the perfect price. Since we moved into our house, almost three years ago, I have had plans to replace our dining room table, but it hasn’t happened yet, because I still haven’t found my perfect piece.
With every new piece of furniture I add to my home, I am sharing another piece of myself. Each piece represents my personality and aesthetic. My mismatched furniture reflects quirky me. Perhaps I am slightly narcissistic, but I love seeing a piece of me in every room.
While my chairs, tables, and side tables do reflect me, I believe each piece also contains their own personality. While I am building each space to represent my taste, my furniture is also adding a little flavor of their own. Because a number of my pieces do come from antique stores, they also bring their own stories into my house.
I love creating back stories, visualizing the furniture passing through owner after owner. Wondering who decided to paint green on top of the original paint, who added white on top of that, how many layers of paint actually lie below. Each piece of furniture says something to me, and each piece adds something to my house and my life in general. With each new piece I purchase I feel a hole has been filled, my house is one step closer to being complete. However, I can’t help but wonder what will happen when every corner and wall has been filled, perhaps at that point, it will be time to pass my furniture to new hands, to fill another hole in another person’s home.
As a furniture addict I have to part with a little bit of advice… you must let your furniture express you… because furniture has personality too.
- Visual journal
- Rubber cement
- Xacto knife
- SCAD book
- Colored pencils
This page was slightly painstaking to make. It involved a great deal of cutting and planning. By the time I finally arrived at the last page before my chair, I still had no idea what I was going to do with it. I knew I somehow wanted to highlight the chair, and decided I had to find a way to bring focus to it.
It all began when I decided to create a double page about my chair, because it was that important. To do this I cut a hole through the page before the page with the chair, to expose it on both pages. Luckily, in my old classroom I had a light table, so I was able to shine light through the chair page, which allowed me to see the outline on the page before it. I traced around the shape, and cut it out with an Xacto knife. Most people do not have a light table at home, so your best bet is to hold the page up to a window, and use the sun as a guide.
As I was moving through these steps I kept trying to come up with ideas for the pages, when the sentence “let your furniture express you… because furniture has personality too” came to me. It was a perfect way to focus on two different things on the pages and yet tie them together. I then decided to find a way to visually represent the personality of the furniture. I opted to re-purpose an image from a magazine or book, and decided to flip through one of my Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD) catalogs. Every Fall I look forward to this catalog because they include amazing student work, which I often incorporate into my pages. I picked up the newest edition, and immediately found my background. It was the cover of the book, which worked in my favor, because it would be large enough to incorporate into both pages. It was a painting of a large, abstract animal, it almost looked like a cross between a dog, cat, and bear. It looked friendly, artsy, and slightly odd, it was perfect.
To begin I cut a rectangle out of the image on the lower right corner, which would go around the chair. I carefully cut out the chair shape from the rectangle, and glued it down. To tie the two pieces together better I cut small slivers and glued them next to the chair legs and in between the slates on the back of the chair. From there I continued to cut the rectangle bigger from the image, and in the process I created these frame like pieces. I wanted them to stay whole, so I used an Xacto knife to cut each frame out of the original catalog cover.
I made sure I kept them in order, and once they were all cut out I began gluing them down. I decided to use the image on both pages, and thought it would interesting to glue every other frame on a different page. This created an interesting effect, once the entire page was covered, the image came together despite the spaces. When you flip from the first page to the next you see the missing pieces from the image. Once everything was placed I added the words with colored pencil. I wrote over the words multiple times using yellow, blue, and green, to tie in with the colors of the image.
Create a personality for an inanimate object in your home! It can be a piece of furniture, or even a toy, food, or appliance. Have fun!
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