Autumn is upon us, the leafs on the trees have changed colours and are covering the ground with their beauty.  The days are shorter and cooler.  The fog comes more frequently, mingling and lingering over the city, the advent of the long winter sleep to come.  Creativity never sleeps, it moves through the seasons, with me and brings new and exciting opportunities.  Here are some of my new creations that have been brewing over the year and have finally come to fruition.  


This past spring I tried a new technique for book covers. I used cold wax mixed with oil paints on gesso board.  Using a palate knife I created four abstract paintings.  They have been drying since then and finally they were ready for the books.  Here are three of them, one more to be completed. 


 Coptic bound using a kettle stitch.  

There was a very large product stamp across the back of the board.  I covered it with a piece of the decorative paper I used for the back cover.  The decorative paper is of books in Arts End, Old Bodleian Library.  They are large folio-size books in the arts from the 17th and 18th centuries.  The fly leaf is suminagashi on washi.  

The kettle stitch of 10 signatures (100 blank pages), and the covers.  I used Fabriano sketch paper for the text block.  

The Pond 

The fly leaf is suminagashi on paste down paper.  

I was in a very creative mood when I made this book.  The first page of each signature (10) has been hand cut with the same pattern and backed with suminagashi paper.  

The Cottage 

  I see a cottage in the foreground surrounded by the colours of autumn. 

The inside front cover and fly leaf - again suminagashi on washi.

I did the kettle stitch in a bright yellow thread. 


The flutter book is a simple book made from one piece of paper.  It was one of the fun books I used to teach at the beginning of my book arts class.  

Playing with Lines 

The cover of this small flutter book on the left and the flutter book opened up, flat.  You can see each page, except the cover.  To create the book it takes four folds and two cuts.  Great fun! 

Page 1 

Pages 2 and 3 

 Pages 3 and 4 

Pages 5 and 6 

When folded up, the flutter book has pages that can be used, front and back as well as under two flaps.  

The closed book measures 17.1 x 10.3 cm/6 3/4 x 4 1/8 inches, and opened it measures 34 x 41 cm/13 1/2 x 16 1/4 inches.

Through the Seasons with Trees 

I used photographs of trees that I took throughout the different seasons, for this flutter book.  

The flutter book fully opened

I played with lines to create this tree for the cover of the flutter book. 

Since this was a large piece of paper (50 x 65 cm/19 3/4 x 25 1/2 inches), I was able to put two (10 x 15.2 cm/4 x 6 inch) photos in landscape format or one of the same size, in portrait format.  

Pages 2 and 3 are of spring 

Pages 4 and 5 are of summer and winter 

Pages 6 and 7 are of summer. The photo on page 6 is the scar in the bark of a tree and the photo on page 7 is of a leafed tree viewed through the burnt shell of an old tree.

The back pages 8 and 9 are images of the scars, in the wood of trees, made by an invasive beetle.  

Pages 10 and 11 are under the flaps of pages 8 and 9.  

The back page of the large flutter book 


I haven't made a lot of zines and when I have they turn out to be quite big.  I enjoy making them and had a great deal of fun with this one.  Quite a number of years ago, I took care of a friend's cat, while she worked away from home.  We communicated regularly, through e-mail, about her little pet and my experiences with her.  I kept the e-mails and finally turned them into a book.  The beautiful little cat has long since moved on to kitty heaven, but the memories of her antics linger through these pages. 

Biba, The Divine Feline Diva 

I used rabbit fur to create a likeable image of Biba on the cover.  She had the most amazing yellow eyes.  

I created two fly leafs, the first on vellum with the title of the book and the second an illuminated B.  I used Tiziano paper by Fabriano for the book.  Once completed I had it printed on a beautiful linen textured paper.  The nice thing about the printed copy is it picked up the fleck in the Tiziano.  I made three of these books, the original and two copies.  One was a gift for Biba's mistress. 

 the opening pages 

A couple of excerpts from the zine.  There are a total of 46 pages in this zine and it measures 20.4 x 14 x .8 cm/8 x 5.5 x .25 inches.  I used Bockingford water colour paper for the cover and did a long stitch binding.  


In May of 2013, I was standing in my living room when I felt the tremors of an earthquake - not something that is a usual occurrence in Ottawa.  It started me thinking about what happens when the earth tremors and quakes and this poem came to me.  I titled it: 

When Mother Earth Sighs

You build me up
You tear me down
You dig into my soul
Drilling, exploding, ripping and tearing
all that holds me together
You cover my fractures with materials
made from the extracts of my being
I resist until I can hold no longer
I yield, breaking and crumbling until my soul bleeds
I cry tears that swallow cities
I explode, sending ash into the heavens
I spew rivers of fire that eat my flesh
I tremble and bring down towers, bridges, homes and forests 

I am self-destructing; shuddering
I sigh and my healing begins
You build me up, you tear me down
You dig into my soul
Drilling, exploding, ripping and tearing
All that holds me together
You cover my fractures with materials
Made from the extracts of my being...

This year I bound the poem into an artist book.

I used acrylic for the covers.  I scored them, drilled them, and painted on them using acrylic paint and an acrylic gel medium to add texture to the covers.  I also ground up some dried avocado pits with which I had been experimenting, mixing them into the paint. 

I used my photographs as background images that reflected each line of the poem. 

back cover 

This exploration, constructing and deconstructing occurs everywhere in the world and it is cyclical.  When humans are finished with an area, nature takes over and rebuilds until humans return and start the process over again.  Reclamation is a mild version of what existed before the deforestation and construction.  In this book I have left mis-drilled holes to represent dry bore holes and lumps under the paper to represent the treasures that are sought after, by humans.  Each page was bound individually and I left the long threads at the spine to represent the threads of intent.  


I have created five soft-covered photo books for a friend.  Her little daughter takes a lot of photos and in one of our discussions, I suggested she put her photos into a book so she can see her work and as a way to encourage her to keep taking photos.  When I asked the little one what her favourite colour was, she replied, "rainbow."  So I created very colourful designed rainbows for each book. Each book has 10 pages in it.  I made them square so  landscape and portrait formats would be accommodated.  
They measure 20.3 x 20.3 cm/8 x8 inches.  I used Bockingford water colour paper, pigment pens to draw the patterns and fill in was with water colours. 

Book 1 - front and back covers 

Book 2 - front and back cover - when turned sideways the front cover shows a different group of buildings and the back cover shows a kiss

Book 3 - front and back covers 

Book 4 - I only did the front cover on this book 

Book 5 - front and back covers.  I appliquéd paste paper, marbled paper and Japanese lace paper to this book cover and then filled in the spaces with drawings. 

That's all for now.  It has been a creatively productive year.  Wishing you all a pleasant autumn.  

If you have any questions about my work, you may contact me at: or through the blog.  



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