Looking back on 2009, I realized early in 2010 that my book making had petered out. I’d get ideas, but the execution of even a small run seemed daunting. But I missed it. To me, there’s nothing like that moment when a bunch of paper stuck together becomes a book. I’ve taught bookbinding in the school system for years, and that ‘aha’ moment is my very favourite moment of every single workshop. I never get sick of it.
So in January of 2010, I decided that I would make one book a month, just one. Of course, I ended up making small runs every now and then, but the goal was just one, and it was totally manageable. In fact, it was exciting – I’d spend the month thinking, gathering, collecting and sketching out ideas. It was a far more thoughtful process than my previous manic-crazy-run-out-of-paper-mid-way-through-book-making adventures.
Truth be told, many books got made at midnight on the 31st of the month, but I still did it, a book every single month. And I pushed myself to experiment with different ideas I’d often been meaning to play with – paper cutting, letterpressing and pop-ups (still need to play around more with this one!).
Looking at them all now, it’s clear that I am smitten with Nepalese paper for its forgiving nature and almost fabric-like texture. I also love St. Armand paper. It cuts like a dream, and holds letterpressed ink like nobody’s business.
I’m going to continue the book-a-month project in 2011. I was thinking I should push myself and try new papers…and I will, but I’m going to focus on collaborations this year. Songwriter-photographer-fibre-and-art friends, beware!
Happy making. 2011’s going to be a good one, I can feel it!
ps: here’s a run down of my 2010 books