Tuesday, June 29, 2010

MOBY-DICK, Page 294

Title: ...to this block the great blubber hook, weighing some one hundred pounds, was attached.

7.25 inches by 10 inches
ballpoint pen on found paper
June 29, 2010


  1. Hello, I was wondering where you find some of the "found paper" that you use in this work. I use collage in my artwork and am always on the prowl for interesting paper.

  2. Helen, thank you for the question. When I was in grad school from 2004 to 2006, I worked for a Half Price Books in Ohio. Customers would bring in extraordinary numbers of books to sell and we would put the best stuff out while occasionally discarding the damaged, the unsellable (chemistry textbooks from 1954, etc.) or the useless. I was fortunate enough to have an understanding manager who let me regularly take home stacks of stuff we were going to throw away because I had a feeling, even back then, that I would like to do something with those old books and papers. I was always on the lookout especially for old diagrams, repair guides, maps and other books and paper with visual information on it.

    Wonderfully enough, after finishing graduate school, both my wife and I gained employment at libraries. I work for a public library system, she works at an academic library. Both of us regularly scour the library discard bins for similar books, maps, diagrams, and so on, and it has kept me in a more or less constant supply of "found" paper.

    Your best bet, if you're interested in this kind of thing, is to visit your local Half Price Books or used book store and look at their bargain sections. They're pretty hesitant about giving discarded books to customers, or letting customers dumpster dive. But there is a wealth of interesting stuff in the bargain sections, often priced at a dollar or two at the most.

    Also, nearly every library system has a sale of some kind where they price their better discards at sometimes pennies on the dollar. These can also be treasure troves of weird old stuff, especially in bigger cities.

    I hope this helps, but please don't hesitate to email if you have any other questions.

    By the way, this page is from a book about Leonardo Da Vinci that our library was discarding. I snagged it just yesterday and found some very appropriate pages to use right away.


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