Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Chickens, Beef, and Gift Tags

Last week I headed into the San Francisco Center for the Book to do some letterpressing. A friend of mine had found this great chicken letterpress image and asked me to print it. The form printed wonderfully and I was so enthused, I made a day of printing, making not only chicken cards, but also some beef cards and gift tags from the scraps.

I tried to make the perfect 'chicken orange' but I just ended up with regular orange. Oh well.

Chicken form, ready for printing

The cards got yellow and red envelopes.

I packaged the cards for my friend, using an old magazine page as the wrap.

Beef cards in the same style

Inked press, ready to print some gift tags

I made 5 different gift tags with various font colors, besides the 'hi friend' ones, I made tags that said 'awesome', 'hey there', 'love you', and 'why hello'.

I wrapped the cards, envelopes, and some gift tags for my friend in old encyclopedia pages and tied them with fancy kitchen twine.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Intermediate Bookbinding: Week 3

Leather scraps

This past week, in my bookbinding workshop, after learning how to sew our own silk endbands, we practiced leather paring, with both paring knives and paring machines. I loved sewing the endbands, I happily would have sewn endbands for everyone in my class! The leather paring was a different story. It is very unlike anything I have done before, so, needless to say, after 3 hours of attempts at paring, I don't know that I'm any better than when I started. I am determined to become proficient but, I think it'll be a while before you see anything more than crumpled leather scraps from me.

Sewing an endband

Yay, a finished endband!

Getting down to business with my paring knife (on the wrong side of the leather)

A lot of unsuccessful starts

While I was still struggling with my paring my edges, one of my classmates was using a paring machine (it pares in wider strips, kind of like lawn mowing)

The goal for the night was to pare a thin strip of leather with our knives. The strips look like noodles; here's me and my first noodle!

Thursday, March 22, 2012

TA Adventures

Stacks of paper, just waiting to become books

On Tuesday I had the honor of being the teaching assistant for a new SFCB instructor, Jaye Lee Fishel. Jaye was teaching the same workshop I have been teaching, Introduction to Bookbinding, but, it was nice to take a break and be a helper this time around. Plus, Jaye had a ton of little tips and tricks up her sleeve, things I had never thought of (like having students bind the handouts, instead of stapling them). Plus, being the TA gave me the chance to do something I can't do while teaching--take photos of what we were making.

Finished pamphlet stitch

Book from a single sheet of paper (maze book)

Accordion book in process

Here's Jaye teaching

Double signature book

Students making books

Triple dos a dos

Waxed linen thread

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Bookbinding, The Next Level

Hammer+knife=books?! Why yes, it does! In November I completed my first traditional bookbinding course learning 4 hard cover, multiple signature bindings covered with various book cloths and papers. Two weeks ago I moved on to the intermediate level where I will make only 2 books but learn a whole lot of other, more complicated binding techniques including rounding and backing (the part involving a hammer) and leather paring (the part involving a knife). Last week I successfully rounded and backed for the first time. This coming Wednesday I will learn to wield my leather paring knife--I'm so excited! Here are some photos from the first two weeks.

Once again our fearless class instructor is Juliayn Coleman. This one page handout makes it all seem so easy...

14 signatures (groups of folded pages) whoa, this is gonna be a big book!

End sheets. This purpley/pinkish color reminds me of the black raspberry ice cream at Peaches N' Cream in Litchfield, Connecticut (best ice cream ever).

Sewing stations punched

That kettle station (far right) is a little inconsisent up but I successfully sewed on frayed cords

In the job backer just waiting for me to mold it with the hammer. How else would I get a nice round?

Aw, yeah, look at that 'perfect' rounded spine. Well, perfect for a rounding and backing virgin, at least.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Rock Portraits

As promised, here are more photos from Sunday's photo shoot at Mile Rock Beach. I am quite pleased with the images I made that day. I think they show a distinct difference from the beach pictures I've made over the past few years.