This fall, I traveled for the first time since the pandemic. So, naturally, I turned the trip into another book-related exploration. I was fortunate to be in Oxford during three significant book-related exhibits: the International Designer Bookbinders Exhibit, the Bodleian's exhibit entitled Sensational Books focusing on the senses that are evoked through reading books, and the Ashmolean's exhibit on the Pre-Raphaelite artists, including their book illustrations.
I spent the last months of 2022 making slow but steady progress. First, I'm collaborating with a talented wood engraver, Keith Cranmer, for the publication of a fine press, limited edition book. I've had the manuscript of the book for almost a year now. Keith will be creating around 25 illustrations for the story, some will be line drawings and others will be wood engravings.
I was fortunate to spend a day in my studio with Paul Moxon, a master book designer, printer, and author of the book, Vandercook Presses: Maintenance, History and Resources (4th edition of this important book will be published soon).
These are photos of Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass and What Alice Found There, printed at Pennyroyal Press in 1982 with wood engravings by Barry Moser. Bookbinder Philip Smith completed the forwarding of these two fine press books over in the U.K., but the binding was not completed before his death. He made a notation on the colophon at the back of both regarding when he had started the forwarding of the books.
These are photo details from sewing and forwarding the book. There is a significant difference between making one or two design bindings and creating the same binding multiple times for a limited edition binding.
Last month, I finished printing my latest book project on Rives BFK paper on my Vandercook Universal III in the studio. There will be 25 copies of this limited edition. Below are pictures of the process of printing and folding the signatures.
The Springback Binding is from the 19th Century, used for guest books or accounting books.
My current book project is a short story I wrote in 14 vignettes. I'm printing this project on the Vandercook Universal III.
I printed my first small book project on the Chandler and Price. This project was my first attempt at producing an editioned book.
One of the many online bookbinding and printing courses I took during the pandemic included a month-long course taught by the amazingly talented bookbinder Samuel Feinstein. He offered a workshop entitled Intro to Blind and Gold Tooling that was hosted by the SF Center for the Book.