A Book a Day? What's Up With That?

Hi, and welcome to this year-long project. So what's this all about and how did it happen, you might ask. In mid 2007, artist Noah Scalin decided to make a skull out of anything he could find, every day for a year. It stretched him in ways he never imagined, as an artist, a writer and a person. His experience turned into a blog that went viral, and then a book.

Others have picked up on the idea: 365 Hearts, 365 Masks, 365 Bears drawn on a cellphone, 365 paper napkin mustaches.
I wanted to play, too, and I chose books. I love books, I know a bit about making books (thanks to my talented book-maker sister, Marilyn Worrix), and they're broad enough in definition to give me a lot of creative leeway.

The whole point is not really the books. The idea is to stretch myself in many ways as an artist and a person, to set up a discipline, stick with it and see what that teaches me.

I hope you'll join with me and follow along on the journey chronicled here, and let me know what you think.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Book 123 - Embossed and Painted Amate Paper Journal

More hand made books to post, now that I am back from an unintentional break. The modem in my poor pitiful laptop finally bit the dust sometime Sunday and so I have had no internet access since then. Wouldn't work in my room in San Miguel and wouldn't work in two different airports I tried. Ahh, technology; it's such a miracle... except when it's not.

So while I have continued making handmade books, I have not been able to post them here. Time for a little catch up...

Book 123 is another amate bark paper journal. This piece has been embossed and hand painted. I bought it like this at the Artisans' Market, although it might be interesting to try embossing some myself. (but that's for another day and another project).

I now know from firsthand experience that for all its thickness, amate paper can be fragile. It tears easily, and stitching with a longstitch binding can pull right through the paper. So I first stitched the signatures to a separate spine of cardstock. Then I glued that cardstock spine to the center of the inside of the amate paper cover and stitched the book block to the cover with a single row of pamphlet stitches. The glue I had available is not very good so there are gaps, but now that I am back in the US, I will add some better glue to make the structure of this handmade journal stronger.

I'm sure I haven't invented this type of book binding, but I haven't seen it in any of my books on bookmaking. I just thought through the problem and made this up. It seems to work.

I brought about 30 sheets of amate paper home with me so I'll have some to play with for future hand bound books.

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