Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Practice Book - Prompt #3 Adding text

It's time for a new prompt. Let's play with the alphabet. Write Prompt #3 on the top right of your spread and get ready to have some fun. There are many ways to add text to your pages. Why don't you use this spread to experiment and have samples of all the different types of adding text you can think of. When you are designing a book that's not just for practice, you might just want to add a word, or a phrase. But, this is the practice book - the place to try out things to see what your own style is - or will become.

The fastest easiest way to add text is to pick up a pen or pencil or crayon and write on the page. Print, if you like. Calligraphy. Try writing with your non-dominant hand. Try writing backwards or upside down. Try using a small paint brush. Vary the placement and angles of your words. Let them flow like a stream. Or climb up the side of a mountain. Or over a rainbow. You can animate your words by placing them so they look like they are part of a scene. Like a word being kicked like a ball. Or swirling through space.

There are many products that help you create your text - things like stencils, stickers, and stamps. I am crazy about alphabet stamps. You can mix them up for interesting effects. Remember you can stamp onto fabric, ribbon, metal tapes, etc. Craft and scrapbooking stores have a huge variety of these things that are useful to book artists. Old fashioned rub on letters from an office/print shop are still available. How about Dymo labels? You can use stencils with dimensional paste to get raised letters on your pages. It's fun to use an individual stencil of a letter as part of your collage.

Collage is another method. Cut out words and phrases from magazines when you see them and keep them in an envelope. Maybe you liked the font they used, or the word itself is something meaningful to you. You can cut out sentiments from greeting cards, or old discarded poetry books. Use your computer to type out your text, play with the fonts and colors. Print them out and cut them and collage them onto your pages. Try cutting out your letters individually and gluing them down to form words. Try cutting them out of a photo, or out of a book of text, or music. Use scrabble tiles, typewriter keys, alphabet beads. Do they still make alphabet pasta? Hmmmm......

Sometimes it is effective to put your words on the image itself. Or, you can have them in the background. Writing across and over an image is a way to pull the image into the background and making the words more important. You can manipulate this by layering.

It might be a good idea to have more than one spread for this prompt. Your practice samples will remind you of the technique possibilities for your text. You might want to leave some blank pages here so when you think of other types of text techniques - you can add them later so they are all together when you are looking for an idea to pump up your text.

Do you have the book Alphabetical on your shelf? By Lynne Perrella. I recommend it - not just for the uses of letters - but for eye candy. You'll find a lot of good ideas in this book.

I'm sure each of you have favorite ways of adding text, and I'm sure I missed some - so please add anything else in the comments here. We will all learn together. Linda B. reports "I use a website called ransom note generator to do cool text effects." I'd better check that out too.

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