Nov 25, 2014

Bookmarks (not the website kind!)

I can still remember quite vividly a day all of 18-odd years ago now, when I discovered the charm of toned paper. I was working in an awful bookshop in a dodgy shopping centre (a mall, to my state-side friends) and I hated every second of it. Well, nearly every second. There were some moments I suppose.
One of those moments that didn't totally suck was when a box of books was delivered to me and as I opened it, I saw that the books within were wrapped in a really nice and toothy toned paper.

For those of you that don't know what toned paper is, it's basically a type of coloured paper that can vary dramatically in texture and, indeed, colour. Generally speaking though, it's that sort of brown paper that is used for paper grocery bags, wrapping paper, envelopes, etc. It can be quite grainy, even woody; sometimes it's rather waxy and smooth.

So anyway, it didn't take my puny little brain long to look at that toned paper in the box and decide that I wanted to draw stuff on it!
Thus began my love of making my own bookmarks out of toned paper. I've done lots of them over the years. Some were for family members, to sell in a bookshop (Kenny's bookshop in Galway back in 2001), and to use myself.

Here are some old ones:
Earlier this year, I purchased a big stack of pre-cut blank toned paper bookmarks from a person called Marylou Holvenstot through her Etsy store time2split. Marylou creates some really great stuff and she may well be able to sate my toned-paper obsession all in one place!
I've only just now gotten around to placing a single pencil line on any of the blank bookmarks I got from Marylou, but I want to start creating lots of bookmarks for my very own Etsy store. Also, I've started a crazy tradition (all of 1 year old now) of giving bookmarks to my co-workers every Christmas, so no doubt they'll be getting some of these news ones too!
I love making bookmarks. There's something about the tall and thin frame shape that makes drawing something on it both a challenge and a great effect if done right. You can do some very designy things with it too. Couple that with the toned paper, and the way white pencil and gouache looks on it and it's no wonder I love doing it.
I'll do another post on these bookmarks I'm making once I have a big stack of them for sale. The vast majority of them will feature characters and setting from the Realms of Faerie, of course.
Back soon with Slaine (most likely).

1 comment:

:-) MaryLou said...

Thank you for the mention, Jay! Love what you've done with the bookmarks!! :-)