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A found poem altered book page

For my page in the Altered Book group anniversary book, I decided to do a found poem. I've got an old novel called My Lady of the Fog (Ralph H Barbour, 1908) and another Russian text called Selected Stories (Daniil Kharms, 1919). Very different from each other in feel, I decided to use one of the illustrations from Kharms's book and do a found poem using a page from Barbour's.

Really, I couldn't do it the other way around: I can't read Russian!

Here's the instructions that I wrote two years ago for using tissue paper as a guide when creating found poems. This project was done in a similar fashion as the steps below will show.

Materials & Tools

Card stock paper
Pencil, colored pens
Plain white tissue paper
Cutting mat and ruler
Exacto knife
2 book pages, at least one with text
Glue stick

1. Collect your material, tools, and two book pages that you want to use for your found poem. Cut the pages and a piece of card stock to the same size.

2. Find the words and phrases that you want to use in your poem and put a box around them with pencil. Place a piece of tissue paper over the page, and mark the corners. Trace each word box onto the tissue paper.

3. Place the tissue paper over the other page. This page can be an illustration, photo, or more text...whatever you choose. Make sure the corners are lined up properly, and cut through each box with an Exacto knife. Discard the tissue paper.

4. Stack the pages with the card stock on the bottom, the text in the middle, and the page with cut outs on top. Adhere them all together with a glue stick or other low-moisture adhesive. Decorate the top page as you choose. I outlined each phrase with colored markers, and I think I'll probably add some more embellishments before I declare this page finished.
Copyright 2009 Cyndi Lavin. Not to be reprinted, resold, or redistributed for profit. May be printed out for personal use or distributed electronically provided that entire file, including this notice, remains intact.

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Limarea said…
That's a really fun way of putting a piece together =) And it looks cool too =)
Cyndi L said…
Thanks Limar! It's really easy to do as long as you've got some tissue paper to help line up the pages :-)
Limarea said…
Thanks for your comment on my blog! Yes, that's a whole new adventure I'm throwing myself into =) Let's see how it goes =)
Cyndi L said…
I'm happy you're going to give blogging a try :-)
Sherri Osborn said…
Love this idea! I have been trying to figure out some create wall art for my craft room and I just might have to try this project.... it is very frame-worthy! :-)
Cyndi L said…
Thanks Sherri. It works well to do it in an altered book, or separate, maybe even as part of a larger collage spread :-)
Great idea. I wonder if this would be a good way to find inspiration when my muse fails me. Just randomly pick out words from a page and play with them.
Cyndi L said…
Thanks Eileen! I like to skim my eyes over a page and see what words jump out. Eventually you'll find one where several words make an interesting "collection". That's a great idea to use this as an exercise when you're between ideas :-)