Al Rodriguez: Mark Making Tools

Months ago, I contacted a fellow artist and inquired if he would be willing to give a small workshop on “Mark Making Tools.” He’s always making tools; mostly Book Arts tools, like hand carved bone folders made in bamboo or teflon, or a lovely paper tearing tool. But he also makes Bench Hooks, Hole Punching Cradles and Corner Cutters… all designed for making book-art projects a more fluid process.

His name is Al Rodriguez, and he lives in San Diego in the coolest house with his lovely wife Josie, who’s also an artist. Al’s studio is a converted garage, with lots of power tools, storage and a great place for an intimate class.

His class was a blast. We made lots of tools… I couldn’t wait to get home to “make marks.” I love the super rough, funky looking marks that cannot be purposely created. One really needs specialized tools to make these fun, scratchy lines, blobs and textures.

My Japanese Stab binding book was created from the experimental pages… now I am using the tools in my art journal pages too! What fun!

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