I’ve had a full plate lately: putting together a handful of fun classes, working on a new artist book (more info in the extremely near future!) and getting accepted into the upcoming publication “500 Handmade Books: Volume 2” by Lark Books. I had a hunch that 2013 would be a whirlwind of activity, but nothing quite like this!
At the SF Center for the Book this weekend, I taught my “Creative Carousel Books” class. Carousel books (also known as “star books”) are one of my favorite book structures to teach – all the excitement of pop ups, with the “wow!” factor of a tunnel book. And lucky me! I’ll be teaching this class at two different venues in the next couple of months: The Ink Pad in NYC (beginning of June) and the Focus on Book Arts Conference in Oregon (end of June). For more info, be sure to take a look at the RLD “Classes and Sightings” page.
Yesterday’s students at SFCB were wonderful: enthusiastic, eager to experiment and try out new ideas. First step of our books? Creating the blank pages, a.k.a the textblock. From there we moved forward into designing page layouts and positioning each visual element.
And once that was achieved, we stitched everything together!
Covers came together easily, with ribbon ties and a choice of decorative paper. After that, we were in the homestretch of the project: attach the textblock to covers, apply endsheets and put the whole thing under weight.
Everyone’s project came together beautifully and it’s always interesting to see how each person’s project is a direct reflection of their personality. That’s one of the amazing things about artists’ books: no two will ever look the same. The character of the person making the book speaks through the work, no matter what.
Each time I teach a workshop, students show me something new, in addition to the things I show to them. I’ve learned about low-tech tools, DIY techniques and troubleshooting from a variety of students met in various classrooms in various cities. I believe that this is the true strength of learning: empowering your peers through knowledge, inspiring by showing. Each lesson learned accumulates over time, to create a fuller, richer way of creating.