While I Was Away

I have actually been visiting Canada’s Left Coast (British Columbia — mostly Vancouver and area) for the past week. Personal book arts activities were non-existent, but I did find some things that relate to artist’s books on my travels. There were two at the Vancouver Art Gallery. The first was unavoidable as it is a text-based installation by Barbara Kruger in the main rotunda.

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Friday Night Flicks: Bringing a Pop-Up Book to Life

You may recall that Monique Martin and I recently collaborated on a pop-up book called I Love My Love, and entered it in the jurying for Pop-Up Now II at 23 Sandy Gallery.

We have learned that it has been selected for the show, so in celebration here is a Ted Ed video on how to make your own pop-up book with a little bit extra about filming a pop-up with stop-motion animation.



Perhaps you will make a pop-up this weekend. If you want to start simply with a pop-up card, you can find some printable plans with instructions on Robert Sabuda’s website.

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The Cloths of Heaven

Back at the beginning of July, I wrote about one of my entries for weloveyourbooks dot / dash on-line exhibition. I used Hedi Kyle’s panel book structure for my book Over The Hills.

Using the same structure I recently designed and printed two more panel books. They are part of my ongoing series of works inspired by colour-graphemic synesthesia. Continue reading

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Friday Night Flicks: The Hoxton Street Monster Supplies Cookbook

This past Sunday I posted about Putting Up Mangoes, an artist’s book from Convivio Bookworks. Today’s two short videos are promotions for a book which, if not an artist’s book, is still quite artful.

I have been a fan of Hoxton Street Monster Supplies (the fund-raising front for The Ministry of Stories) since their early days, so I could not resist showing their latest fund-raiser here. (If you leave the player running you will get to see four recipes.)



You can read more about the cookbook here. Perhaps you can get hold of a copy this weekend. If you are in North America, the book (with appropriate measurements by volume instead of weight) is called The Monster’s Cookbook, with a release date of September 20, 2016.





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Putting Up Mangoes

The title of this post sounds like I might be about to pass on a recipe, but Putting Up Mangoes is the title of a book. Like most book artists, I collect as well as produce artist’s books. This one arrived on Friday.

It has been quite a process, starting back in July. Convivio Bookworks was having a sale and I ordered a copy of Putting Up Mangoes.

On Jul 2, 2016, at 12:22 PM, Cathryn Miller wrote:
Hi John,
I would love to buy a bound copy of Putting Up Mangoes, but the address form does not permit me to change the destination country to Canada.
Do you not ship across the border?!
P.S. I would need to know shipping costs before confirming the order.

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Friday Night Flicks: The Bookbinding Tool Maker

This is a lovely little video featuring a German-trained woodworker who started building bookbinding tools by accident. Be careful not to miss the miniature plough about half way through!



Perhaps you can spend part of your weekend figuring out this gentleman’s name. (I think he may live in Australia.)

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How to make an interlocked band closure for books (and other things)

(I think that is my longest post title yet!)

On August 21 a reader asked a question in the comments section of an old post: she was curious about the interlocked band I had used, but could not make out the details in the picture.

I replied and included this image.

Although that seemed to satisfy the reader, I thought “If one person has taken the time to ask, perhaps complete instructions are in order?”

So here they are. Continue reading

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Friday Night Flicks: Calligraffiti — Rajat Bhele

A post on BoingBoing on Monday reminded me that I haven’t posted a calligraphy video for a while. Here’s a short film of Indian calligraffiti artist Rajat Bhele designing and lettering an installation piece for J. J. Hostel, Bandra, Mumbai. (It took me a few moments to recognise that the lettering is in English.)



And here’s the video of Toronto’s famous Graffiti Alley that inspired me to go looking for calligraffiti.



Perhaps you could try your hand at some brush lettering this weekend or, if you live in a big city, see if you can find some examples of local calligraffiti.

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Some Assembly Required 2

This was the week for actually putting I Love My Love together. I have done a movable book before, so I knew that there was a lot of careful work to be done. On the whole I think things went well with the assembly. David photographed the book for me so I had images to enter the work in POP-UP NOW II, an upcoming exhibition at 23 Sandy Gallery. The pictures were taken before putting a cover on the book as it made it easier to prop all the pages at the same angle. I used a piece of foam core as a support so that there was no shadow from an external prop.

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Friday Night Flicks: Cosmology

I don’t usually post videos by book artists in the same week as they are announced to the public. I am making an exception this week because Helen Hiebert’s book Cosmology is such a simple and elegant structure that I thought it should be shared as widely as possible. It is also a collaborative effort as you will see by the credits at the end of the video.



Here is the text of the poem in case you missed some of it in the video.

Cosmology, by Carl Adamshick

Silence is a window
open to the mountain air.
The window, a transparent map,
of moonlight showing
an ocean floor
and the lost city
where your child grew tall.

Memory is the water
you hear falling
on the mountain
as your hand pushes
the silence closed.


Perhaps you will read some poetry this weekend, or even write some.

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