Art of the Accident: Zine Workshop

Due to a change of plans at university the graphic design students were invited to join in with the zine workshop for the illustration students. We were given a handout with various book structures on for us to experiment with for our zines. Having previously made poster books in my book arts induction and for explain the unexplained project earlier this semester, I decided to create a zine that used french binding, a bookbinding technique I have had no previous experience with.

As graphic design students were not initially meant to take part in this workshop we arrived unprepared with no imagery or work to put into our zine. What I did however was take my monoprints which I had just created for my art of the experiment project, these prints I deemed unsuccessful as they lost most of the detail from the original photographs I was basing them on and therefore did not link clearly to my concept of weathering and erosion, however I still liked the marks made within the prints. For the zine I took the prints with the most interesting marks and cut the A4 prints down to a5 sheets of paper, cropping into the most visually intriguing sections of each print with help of my cropping tools.

For the prints to be french bound the a5 sheets then had to be folded in half, the A6 pages would then be bound on the long


edge opposite to the fold. What I discovered unintentionally about french binding is that it is a good binding technique for monoprints. When producing my monoprints I rolled out water based ink onto perspex, then I place paper on top of the ink and worked onto the back of the paper with pencil and charcoal to pick up the ink on the opposite side. By french binding my prints you can view the marks made on the back of the paper by gently prying open one of the folded pages to view what it inside. These concealed marks are visually interesting, show process and add another way in which the audience can interact with the book.

The style of binding I used to hold the pages together was Japanese stab sewing. I first used a boning tool to create folds in each of the pages, so that when the pages were bound the book could lie flat. I then drilled holes into the folded pages along the long edge opposite the fold. Finally I used stringle to sew through the holes and bind the book.

I found this workshop to be very helpful as it allowed me to take work that I felt was previously unsuccessful and turn it into a successful book. I did not initially think of moving these prints forward by using process however by creating a zine I’ve allowed the imagery to not go to waste.

Art of the Accident: Monoprints

Based on my photographs of rust at Brighton Beach I produced several monoprints. These monoprints used black and/or red water based ink and was produced through a number of methods, such as applying pressure of wiping away the ink.

I choose the explore the medium of monoprinting as it quickly and easily allows for the generation of imagery, often producing unexpected results as often you can not see the design until you are finished printing. Furthermore the visual quality of monoprinting is very textural which I thought would compliment the textured nature of the rust imagery.


Although I find the gestural marks made in the prints visually interesting, I think the prints are too far removed from the concept. The imagery is so abstracted that it would be impossible to know that they are referencing rust without knowledge of their context. Furthermore the variety of bright and bold colours present in my rust photography is lost through monoprinting which normally used a limited palette. To continue my investigation of rust I believe focusing on the close up photography of rusted objects will be far more successful as it captures the detailed textures, as well as the variety of colours present in the rust.

Art of the Accident: Typography Experiments

Inspired by one of the photographs included in my mood board I decided to start experimenting with typography and how I can use process to weather and erode it. I began by printing out several copies of the word ‘erosion’ onto paper and tearing the words up. Using the torn up pieces I created several compositions, some were designed to make sure the word was still legible whilst others were more experimental. I also experimented with scrunching the paper up and twisting and distorting the paper to warp the letterforms. For each of my compositions I would photograph them and then take them into Adobe Illustrator where I would use the trace tool to transform my photographs into crisp vector illustrations.

I also explored typography through experimental wiped monoprints. On a large piece of acetate I rolled out black water based ink which I allowed to dry for several hours. Once the ink was fairly dry I used pencils and other sharp objects to scratch the word ‘erosion’ into the surface of the ink. Once again after creating each of these compositions I would photograph them and take them into Adobe Illustrator to turn them into vector illustrations.

Out of the two techniques I used I prefer the effect created tearing and warping the paper. I find the unpredictable distortion of clean and crisp letterforms to be more visually interesting than the effect created from scrapping letters into partially dried ink, as the outcomes created using this process could be recreated with pen, paper and messy handwriting. Further on into the project I hope to create a final outcome in the form of a book therefore my torn and warped paper typography experiments could be revisited and refined for use on the front cover or for titles within the book.