Monday, July 28, 2008

Off to a Workshop

Hurray, hurray, later this week I'm off to attend my first-ever bookbinding workshop! It's at the Seattle Center for Book Arts, and the instructor is Elsi Vassdal Ellis.

The workshop will cover German long and link stitch limp covers (limp covers are the soft, wrap-around leather covers, like the journal from my Etsy shop pictured here:

As Elsi says in the workshop description: "There are two distinct styles of limp structures: the Italian with a more relaxed approach to the stitching and the northern with structured designs employing more rigid supports." I got my ideas for making soft-cover leather journals when I was in Venice, Italy, a few years ago, so my journals are mostly in the "relaxed Italian" style. I'm looking forward to making more northern-style bindings in this workshop.

Also, I have to say, I'm very excited at the prospect of having other bookbinders to talk to! I've actually been quite happy working out how to make books on my own, but sometimes it does feel a bit isolated out here in the wilds of the British Columbia interior. Very beautiful here, but not a lot going on bookbinding-wise.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Arte y Pico Award

So there I was, having a rather lumpish day, when I got word from JudithHeartSong that she was giving me the Arte y Pico award--thanks, Judith!
The rules for this award are:

1) You have to pick 5 blogs that you consider deserve this award for, creativity, design, interesting material, and also contributing to the blogger community, no matter what language.
2) Each award has to have the name of the author and also a link to his or her blog to be visited by everyone.
3) Each award-winner, has to show the award and put the name and link to the blog that has given her or him the award itself.
4) Award-winners and the one who has given the prize should to show the link to the "Arte y pico"blog , so everyone will know the origin of this award.
5) To show these rules.

There are so many lovely, creative blogs out there--how can you even choose? Here are five blogs that inspire me:

Milkmoon: creative in her art and in her life (she also has a blog about "an adventure in childhood", called Dandelion Songs

Sweetwater Designs: The most beautiful handmade beads

Little Paper Bird: A fellow book arts addict :)

Barnacle Goose Paperworks: beautiful paper creations, plus great posts about her life "down under"

Rima: her blog is a work of art in itself, plus all that lovely artwork she makes

There are many other blogs that I love to read, but didn't include because they already have the Arte y Pico award (not surprisingly!): Acornmoon, Middle of Nowhere, Waterrose, Calico Cat Press, and on and on...

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Nice, fat journals!

Some of my customers have been asking me to make leather journals with lots of pages, so I did! Here are a couple that I just added to my Etsy store. This one has 320 pages of 50 lb writing/sketch paper:

And this one, with a grey suede cover, has 336 pages of 50 lb writing/sketch paper:

Enough, I think, for a good, solid year's worth of journaling, accounting, of course, for those few odd days when you don't get anything, including journaling, done at all....

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Exhibition of Cuban Books & Prints

A while back I did a couple of posts on handprinted books I picked up on a trip to Cuba. (You can see the posts here and here.)

Recently the Gallery at Zea Mays Printmaking in Florence, Massachusetts, did an exhibition of Cuban books and Prints. If you'd like to see more, check out this link for some photos from the exhibition. Wonderful stuff, especially when you consider the conditions in which the artists are doing their work (well, they do have rum and cigars, which maybe is all you need to get inspired :)

Thursday, July 10, 2008

The View From Here

A big rainstorm came through today, which was wonderful and refreshing. Here is a view of it arriving, taken from an upstairs window.
The Thompson and North Thompson Rivers come together here, and we can see rainy weather heading our way down the North Thompson river valley. It's been hot here, so I wanted to go outside and stand in the rain when it got here, but some lighting decided to come, too, so I stayed inside and watched all the CRACK and swoooosh of it from a window...

Monday, July 7, 2008

Buddha Whirlwind Book

I've started making whirlwind books, and I can't stop! :)

This one (see my previous post for more info about the whirlwind book) has two quotes from the Buddha:

"If we could see
the miracle of a single
flower clearly
our whole life would change."


"Your work
is to discover your work
and then with all your heart
to give yourself to it."

I've started to put my whirlwind books up on my wall in a very willy-nilly fashion, wherever there is a nail:

I'll show the rest of them in more detail in upcoming posts.