Saturday, October 30, 2010

My first pop-up book

This is my first attempt at making a pop-up book. I didn't attempt any amazing pop-up structures; I just attached my trees to little pop-up squares made with two cuts on the fold.

I've submitted this book as part of a BEST challenge so you can vote for it if you like it! Or vote for whichever you like best - by visiting the BEST blog. There are some really great entries in the challenge this year.

So, this is a Time for Patience. A handmade pop-up book to celebrate the procrastination innate in leaf raking. No sense starting until every leaf has fallen.

It is a 2-page pop up. So the first pop-up spread is a tree, barren of leaves, except for one at the top.

The second spread is a wider scene of that same tree and a couple others, with the rake and the raker and the fallen leaves, all waiting patiently for that last leaf to fall.

I also collected a few leaves and made some rubbings which are used on the covers of the book. Leather spine.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Gaspereau Press Wayzgoose

As I mentioned in the last post, I dragged my family to Kentville on Saturday to an open house at Gaspereau Press for their annual Wayzgoose. They also had other activities throughout the weekend like printing demonstrations, presentations, bookbinding workshops etc. I only made it to the open house. This is the first year that I have attended and they have been doing it for 11 years; maybe next year I'll get down to more of the events.

One thing I hadn't seen before, was this handy machinery that cast lead type in an instant. This is Andrew Steeves making a lead cast of my son's name - the whole process took only a minute and the lead was cool enough to hold when it came sliding out the front.

I also came away with a bundle of posters that were printed during the open house. Shown here top left, the BlUNT poster letterpress printed on a Vandercook proof press, then top right, a sample of some offset printing for the quotation from Henry David Thoreau. Bottom left, is the letterpress poster that Nicholas and Amos printed on another Vandercook proof press, and bottom right, a couple little cards printed on a parlor press using the lead cast that Andrew made a few minutes previously.

They also have an offcut paper sale, where you can buy offcuts of nice paper, and it's cheap. So of course, I brought home some paper too - bonus.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Visiting Letterpress Artist - Amos Paul Kennedy Jr

Amos Paul Kennedy Jr is a letterpress artist from Alabama. He has been visiting Halifax this month with his work exhibited in one of the NSCAD galleries coinciding with the recent city-wide "Nocturne" art event. He also presented a couple of public talks and attended some classes at NSCAD as a guest artist and teacher.

There is a gallery of some of his work on his website ( He designs and prints some terrific posters, including a great series on the virtues of coffee. Many of his posters are very clever and entertaining but many are also very serious in their message, dealing with a wide range of issues like racisim, civil rights, ecomonics, artistic freedom, etc. Apparently he served in the Peace Corps and also studied and worked as a computer programmer in previous lives, but left that behind to pursue the creative life of a letterpress artist. There is a very good article about him on the Daily Mountain Eagle website.

His visit to Halifax also happen to coincide with my last letterpress class earlier this week. He visited our class so it was nice to meet him and have a chance to talk to him a bit. And I saw him again today at the Gaspereau Press Wayzgoose where he was demonstrating one of their Vandercook proof presses and helping people print souvenir posters. I had packed up the whole family to go to the Wayzgoose, so my son got to print the souvenir poster - with some help from Amos.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Woodblock Letterpress printing - 3

Someone mentioned that I never showed a picture of those Christmas cards after printing the second colour. "Merry" was printed first in black, then "Christmas" was printed on top in silver. So here's how they turned out - some were printed on red and some on white...obviously.

After those were done, I started another project using a different kind of press. Here is one of the Dawson Printshop's parlor presses, all inked up with red right now.

This is a Kelsey parlour press; it is a table top press and it is entirely manual. Using this was much different than the comparably gigantic proof press that I was using before. Niko was explaining to me that these small parlor presses were really common in Victorian times when printing was a popular hobby and people just wanted to have one in their home, and of course they kept it in the parlor. So I used this press to print a cover for a notebook. I printed the second colour on them last night so now they are just drying and I'll make them into notebooks and show off a finished one here soon. We have one class left - I've already started something to keep me busy during those last three hours.

Tuesday, October 05, 2010

Autumn Leaves

This is my Autumn Leaves / Autumn Memories journal that I made for the current TCET Challenge! That's a photo of my kid a couple years ago, buried in a pile of fallen leaves. Drop by the TCET blog to vote for your favorite handmade item. Also, if you have an idea that you think our team should use for our next challenge, leave a comment and we might pick your idea! Go here to vote:

Saturday, October 02, 2010

Morgan Conservatory Open House and Auction - Today!

The Morgan Art of Papermaking Conservatory and Educational Foundation is an Ohio non-profit art centre dedicated to the preservation of handmade papermaking and the art of the book. I have met some of the key persons involved in the centre through my attendance at PBI in previous years. For its third year, The Morgan is having their annual Open House and Auction, today, October 2 from 6 to 10pm. So if you are in the Cleveland area, check it out at 1754 East 47th Street.

The silent auction will raise funds for The Morgan and its programs. Many of the auction items are made with, from, on, or otherwise featuring handmade kozo paper, made on site. There are also many other art objects for auction as well. Many well known artists, paper makers, and book artists are involved in this event and have made the items for the auction. And some not as well known - in fact, this leather journal, by me, is one of the items available (I didn't have any of their kozo paper to use). It features a full leather cover with an abstract floral detail, with marbled endpapers (marbled by me). Pages are Mohawk Superfine cream.