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The Altered Editions of Rachael Ashe

Rachael Ashe is a Vancouver artist whose specialities include photography, collage, and a very unique approach to the art of book alteration. Drawing inspiration from the vast variety and influence that our cities nature provides us, Rachael strives to incorporate bits of nature into all of her artwork. We sat down with Rachael as she shared exactly why she alters books, how she approaches them, and what drives her unquenchable desire to create.

Interested in some of the tools seen in this video?
Lineco Bone Scorer
Precision Knife
Alvin Self Healing Cutting Mat
Bookbinder Needle

See more of Rachael Ashe’s work on her website.


Wow! I absolutely love what Rachael is doing with these materials and admire her imaginative sense of whimsy. Her books, wall pieces, etc. are just gorgeous.

What creativity. I really admire Rachael's approach emphasising the exploration of materials. Her art is so beautiful and evocative.

I cringe at the thought of defacing a book, by any means :(

I have said it exactly how she explained in those words before how when you're being creative it's like "not thinking".. it is a total oxy moron but it's how I feel when I paint. All my bills, my job, lifes obstacles take a back seat and I feel focused and at peace in my art. It made me happy to hear her say it too.

I really love her art work, I can understand how it feels when your so wrapped up in what your doing. When I'm designing and carving my leather, time and the outside world just doesn't exist.

Interesting that you should say this. I would have totally agreed with you at one time but with the number of books I have Ben collecting over the years and have tried to give away, sell to used book stores and sell through other means I am realizing that they are now possibly destined for the landfill. I think this is a brilliant alternative! It was my love of books that brought me to this website because this brings welcome alternatives to disposing of them. The landfills are filled with books and this is a way to give them a new life. How incredibly creative!! I know it will be hard to do anything with a book but read it but am looking forward to challenging myself to take that mammoth leap and honour my books in a whole new way.

The above comment was in reply to the earlier entry that said "I cringe at the thought of defacing a book, by any means :("
Just wanted to clarify that!

Totally agree, Ashley - the zen state, the meditative state, "not thinking" - whatever we call it, that place that we get when we're "in the zone" and just creating is one of the most incredible, most beautiful benefits of art.
It is something that should be celebrated and encouraged - imagine how much happier people would be, how much stress and anger could be reduced, if more people had a creative practice!

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