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Re: [BKARTS] craft standards, poor books

Charles Brownson wrote:
I am trying to master a style of artists book I might call 'rustic' -- to step outside the fine printing tradition of craft perfection. Think of the Zen tea masters' preference for a bowl a little misshapen, with a glaze which has dripped or crackled in firing. So the question is how to tell such a thing from a book which is just badly made.

Hi all, I'm a returning member who couldn't stand one more day without talk of the book arts and book making!

I haven't seen this issue written about, but in general, I think that the answer to what you're seeking is in the materials that you use. Handmade papers with deckled or hand-torn edges look more rustic than machine-made papers, for example. Raw leather bindings with natural edges look more rustic than books covered in leather with the edges tucked under slick endpapers.

What makes rustic books look professional instead of "crafty" or badly made are the techniques that you use in putting them together. If your techniques are professional, and the materials are rustic, then I think you'll have a 'rustic' artists book.

Perhaps you're looking for a more complicated answer?


bobbi c.

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