Saturday, September 5, 2015

365 True Things: 160/Craft

I am not a crafty person—with one exception: I love to make artist books. Which aren't really a craft (like scrapbooking), in my mind anyway. Though I couldn't tell you exactly what the difference is.

What I do is certainly closer to crafty-ness than what artists who really devote themselves to the medium do. There are some amazing examples out there. Just google "book arts / images" or visit Fuck Yeah, Book Arts!, for example, and you'll find many beautiful, creative, inventive, complex (and simple too) artist books. A treat for the eye.

But regardless: making books is one of my pleasures, though I indulge in it far too seldom. I enjoy working with paper, and sometimes cloth, and needle and thread; I enjoy the painstaking attention to detail. Sometimes I showcase photos I've taken, and it's nice to have a presentation mode that's different from framed images on the wall. I enjoy holding the finished object in my hands and paging through it—even if it's just blank pages.

Here are a few of the books I've made.

Non-adhesive accordion book

Sewn tape binding
Stitched soft cover

Side binding
Case binding

Soft-cover side binding
Jacob's ladder: "Raining Cats and Dogs"

Hardcover accordion book

Hardcover Japanese side-sewn (tortoise shell design) book
Accordion book: 0E-W/0N-S
Side binding

As I look at these pictures, I'm feeling inspired to make another book. Not long ago I ordered a kit from Volcano Arts, thinking that having everything prepared might help me get going. I should get going! I've got everything I need. Including time, if I just allot it sensibly.

Next May, I'm taking a five-day books arts class with the same Volcano Arts. It's all about making "metal furniture": protective corners, bosses, clasps. Pliers and blowtorches, yeah! Even though I feel like a beginner at this book arts thing, I think it will be fun to spend five days with fellow book artists. Maybe it will encourage me to make more time for this could-be passion of mine.


  1. Wow--stunningly beautiful, Anne. I'm so impressed. I find it hard to believe it took you to #160 to write about this part of you : )