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Posts Tagged ‘tryst press’

  1. Bookbinder of the Month: Lang Ingalls

    March 16, 2014 by Erin Fletcher

    FantasyAndNonsense-LangIngalls

    The exhibition showcasing design bindings of the Tryst Press edition of Fantasy & Nonsense has been mentioned a few times on the blog. I first discussed the exhibition with my own submission, then again when I featured the work of Coleen Curry and Mary Uthuppuru. The book itself is a compilation of works by the American poet James Whitcomb Riley paired with beautiful wood engravings by Berrot H. Hubrecht. Each of the exhibitors really captured the whimsy of the poems and illustrations, transforming each binding into a unique object.

    Lang Ingalls‘ binding of Fantasy & Nonsense is no different in this respect. Her simple yet elegant design extracts the illustrations and complies them to form an intriguing landscape across the open binding. Lang created the binding in 2012 for the exhibition which was hosted by the Rocky Mountain Chapter of the Guild of Book Workers and displayed at the J. Willard Marriott Library at the University of Utah. Bound in the French technique in full light blue goatskin. The linear design was painted with acrylic inside a pulled leather line. Other design elements include colored head edge, custom paste paper endsheets and hand tooled title in blind on the spine.

    I love the color palette on this binding. Even though I had the opportunity to view this binding in person, I was stumped by how you created such a fine line of color in the leather. Can you talk about the technique you employed in this binding?
    This is one of the techniques I learned form Hélène Jolis — it is called an incision line. You actually cut the two sides of the line with a scalpel, remove the leather and paint with acrylics (yes, you need a paintbrush with only three bristles!) inside the line. I advise an optivisor for the work…


  2. Book Artist of the Month: Mary Uthuppuru

    January 20, 2014 by Erin Fletcher

    FantasyAndNonsense-MaryUthuppuruIn 2012, the Rocky Mountain Chapter of the Guild of Book Workers held an juried exhibit of design bindings based on a book of James Whitcomb Riley poetry called Fantasy & Nonsense. The text block was beautifully letterpress printed by Tryst Press and includes wonderful and whimsical wood engravings by Berrot Hubrecht. 

    Mary Uthuppuru’s binding of Fantasy & Nonsense is covered in a thin hand-painted tissue, which allows the scattered LED lights embedded in the covers to shine through. These lights glow at alternating intervals and represent the goblin’s “green glass eyes” as described in the poem Nine Little Goblins. The book is housed in a cloth covered clamshell box, which contains a compartment holding three spare batteries. Watch the video below to see the LED lights in action.

    The exhibition was held in conjunction with the 2012 Standards of Excellence conference in Salt Lake City, Utah. At the time the books were on display at the University of Utah’s J. Willard Marriott Library, where Mary’s binding was awarded second place. 

    There are so many creative elements in this binding and so many design questions I have for you. Can you talk about your process for creating the painterly look of the cover?
    While I usually use paste cloth (Mary will discuss her paste cloth technique in next week’s post) when I want total control over cover design for my bindings, this book had unusual needs. Paste cloth, while thin, would not allow me the translucency that I needed for the LED lights. Not only did I need the cover material to allow light through, but I needed it to look like the surrounding material when the light was off. For this reason, I turned to Japanese tissue mounted to cotton. The tissue could be painted exactly how I wanted, and in the areas where the LEDs would be placed, I could thin it even more. This way, when everything was painted, it would blend in, but when the lights were on, it would have the effect I wanted.

    The steps for getting from plans to the final book are as follows: create the cover design on a piece of paper to scale, plan the circuitry and light placement, bind the book, add circuitry, work on the cover material. (You’ll find some in-progress images below: layout of design and circuitry, layout of circuitry on front cover boards and detail of wiring.)

    FantasyAndNonsense_process1-MaryUthuppuruFantasyAndNonsense_process2-MaryUthuppuru FantasyAndNonsense_process3-MaryUthuppuru

    The general design for the cover was painted on the tissue, predominately the midnight blue background and the trees. Next, the dry painted tissue was mounted to the cloth with PVA/Klucel G mixture. Once dry, the material was lined up with the paper design and holes were punched where the eyes in the design were to be. I then toned a thinner tissue to match the surrounding areas and put that in place. Finally, the painted design was completed and attached to the book being careful to line up the eyes over the LEDs.

    FantasyAndNonsense_process5-MaryUthuppuru

    Back of covering material and back cover of binding.FantasyAndNonsense_process6-MaryUthuppuruCovering material and front cover of binding.

    Your use of soft circuitry is very exciting and I’m looking forward to seeing how your work progresses with this technique. When did you first experiment with combining this technology with your bookbinding work? What challenges have you experienced? 
    I first started using the soft circuitry when Leah Buechley came from MIT to Indiana University to give a lecture and workshop about the promotion of these materials. I lucked out because my friend was helping put the workshop together and was able to get me a seat. During the workshop, we each created our own soft circuit using conductive thread, a battery and an LED light. The workshop was given in hopes of putting this technology in the hands of people, specifically educators, who make things and have the potential to distribute these skills to kids, especially girls. During the lecture, Leah explained these goals further and showed some amazing applications of the circuitry.

    After this exposure to the potential uses, I was really interested to try the technology in books too, but I wanted to wait until it actually fit the project at hand. It is easy to be excited about a technique or tool and use it just because you are excited about it. It is especially the case with lights and circuitry. It is my feeling that once you add lights to something, that you are trying to draw attention or add extra glitz. I wanted to be careful to reserve this eye catching element for a purpose, not just an adornment. It was this project that was perfect for the lights.

    The challenge comes when you try to figure out how to hide all the electronic components that, while small, are tricky to keep from distracting from the overall design. I wanted to avoid sacrificing my aesthetic to allow the new components, so it can be tricky. With Fantasy & Nonsense, the biggest challenge was hiding the LEDs under the book cloth and trying to figure out how to wrap the conductive threads around the spine.

    CircuitryBox-MaryUthuppuru

    It also required some additional education on my part since the lights are timed with a microcontroller that had to be programmed. I applied these similar techniques to a box I made and donated to the Guild of Book Workers Standards of Excellence auction. The box has a moon (which is also a button) that when pressed, lights up three lanterns. It was built so that when the lid is lifted, there is a panel that folds out and reveals the circuitry. Also included were supplies for a small project and a tutorial for how to put something like that together. (All of this is available for download on my website.)

    CircuitryBox3-MaryUthuppuru


  3. Bookbinder of the Month: Coleen Curry

    July 21, 2013 by Erin Fletcher

    fantasynonsense-coleencurry

    In 2012, the Rocky Mountain Chapter of the Guild of Book Workers put on a juried set-book exhibition which was held in conjunction with the Standards of Excellence conference at the J. Willard Marriott Library at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City. The set-book, Fantasy and Nonsense, is a collection of poems from 19th century American poet James Whitcomb Riley with peculiar wood engravings by Berrot Hubrecht. The text was letterpress printed on handmade paper in an edition of 230 from Tryst Press.

    The first prize went to Coleen Curry’s traditional French-style fine binding covered in a custom-dye pink Harmatan goatskin. Sewn on 4 cords with laced-in boards. The front and back cover cutouts have embedded electrical wires strung with floating glass beads. The decorative endpapers are made by Coleen; a collage made by laminating magazine strips, then sanding and painting the surface. The finished collage was then scanned and inkjet printed onto arches text wove. The bold color palette is a reflection of the whimsical nature of the poems and illustrations.

    fantasynonsense2-coleencurry


  • Visit My Bindery
    My name is Erin Fletcher, owner and bookbinder of Herringbone Bindery in Boston. Flash of the Hand is a space where I share my process and inspirations.
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